Interesting article on how to deal with not liking a difficult parent.

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doglady

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https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2020/sep/11/my-father-always-put-me-down

A thought-provoking piece, but while I found the advice interesting and somewhat helpful, many of the comments were much more so. A small minority really don’t get it, as is usual (lucky them, I guess) and were (in my opinion) rightly called out on their gaslighting, etc. But overall, the comments were validating, very insightful and I certainly gained some extra tips. I’d be interested to hear what others think.

(I have also taken some rough notes of various bits and pieces in the comments that I found helpful and hope to come back to add them here later.)
« Last Edit: September 11, 2020, 10:51:42 PM by doglady »

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treesgrowslowly

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Re: Interesting article on how to deal with not liking a difficult parent.
« Reply #1 on: September 13, 2020, 09:30:02 AM »
Hi doglady,

Thanks for posting this. And for your advice to read some of the comments. Usually I avoid those! But you were right.

The comments were helpful this time. As I read them I realize how little recognition there has been for my own life of NC from abusers. When I went NC, and certainly before that, no one I knew thought it was acceptable to have boundaries with my parents. Going NC and not liking my parents really isolated me from others. They were all busy enjoying a much freer life with relationships that were not as painful.

I was on my own because I happened to have very immature and often abusive,  PD parents.

 For years I stayed silent about it because not liking ones parents was not understood by anyone around me. I was expected to have been born to good (non-abusive) parents.

I have come to see that a lot of people go through life expecting everyone around them to Like our parents because they had good enough parents. Lucky them. Indeed....their understanding never goes beyond 'I like my parents...what's wrong with you?'.

I am going to keep this in mind today.

I can see how strong I had to be to stand up and make boundaries between me and my unlikeable parents. And how much that separated me from everyone who didn't have any insight about what my life was like with a PD parent.. I had to learn to enforce boundaries that I guess most people are lucky enough to never have to learn.

Thanks again for the boost of encouragement this article provided.

Trees

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doglady

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Re: Interesting article on how to deal with not liking a difficult parent.
« Reply #2 on: September 29, 2020, 07:40:55 AM »
Hi Trees, glad you found the articles and comments helpful. I certainly identify with your comment: 'Going NC and not liking my parents really isolated me from others.' Does it ever!! Thank goodness for this forum. Otherwise we can feel so alone. You are so right, when you say you had to be strong and learn to enforce boundaries 'most people are lucky enough to never have to learn.'



I also just wanted to add a few things that stood out for me in the comments:

'In Buddhism, forgiveness is not about carrying the hatred and bitterness with you, but in no way implies keeping toxic people in your life or even seeking to understand them - "If someone has stolen half your furniture, you don't invite them back into your house to steal the other half"

'You decide how you are treated in life and you don't need permission to avoid those who don't treat you well.'

'Don't waste your time on someone who doesn't deserve it.'

'The letter writer sounds drained... this situation is taking too much precious emotional energy that should be going somewhere else more lightheartedly.'

'Forgiving someone doesn't require us to like them or even understand their behaviour...it is a way to set yourself free...it says your [the perpetrator's] behaviour was wrong and hurtful but I refuse to see myself as a victim anymore and I refuse to give you further power over me.'

'Abusive people need victims like we need oxygen...behave like that and you are out of my life.'

'I'd like to respectfully encourage you to care for the child inside of you who was not fathered well. Let that child play, risk, explore. You're worthy now and always were.'

'A counsellor enable me to see that other people's problems are other people's - not mine. I made great use of her visualisation of X trying to hand me a carrier bag containing their problems and then my firmly handing the bag back to the rightful owner. I also had a simple diagram of several carrier bags, all labelled with the owner's initials. It really helped me to see I am not responsible for people's burdens.'
« Last Edit: September 29, 2020, 07:46:15 AM by doglady »

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GettingOOTF

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Re: Interesting article on how to deal with not liking a difficult parent.
« Reply #3 on: September 29, 2020, 09:32:45 AM »
Thanks for posting. My father also always put me down. It got worse as I got older and then when I found professional success. I came to see it as his own issues with his self esteem but the damage has been done. I lacked any confidence in myself for most of my life and made very poor choices as I thought I wasnít worthy of anything.

Iím now NC with my father. My life has only improved. It was alike a huge weight was lifted and I was finally free to be myself. Itís incredible how much those little comments chip away at you.

Iíve come to see that people who put down others are themselves deeply u happy and unfulfilled. I no longer allow these people into my life.

I donít have children but I look at my friends young children and I simply cannot imagine to them what my father said to me. I think there is something deeply broken and possibly evil in anyone who puts down a child.

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Boat Babe

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Re: Interesting article on how to deal with not liking a difficult parent.
« Reply #4 on: September 29, 2020, 11:14:02 AM »
I have low contact with my mother as I feel sorry for her and she no longer pushes my buttons. I have residual love for her as she wasn't a complete nightmare and I understand her own suffering at the hands of her parents and my father.

I can't say that I like her though. She is petty minded, racist, judgmental and indignant.  She can also be charming but I never know what I'm going to get when I see her, so have to psych myself up everytime.

PD parents, gargh!!!!!!
It gets better. It has to.

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blacksheep7

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Re: Interesting article on how to deal with not liking a difficult parent.
« Reply #5 on: October 04, 2020, 01:20:29 PM »
Thank you for posting, it will certainly help many to feel less alone in having those unwanted, unvalidated, Taboo feelings  of not liking our parents!

I remember in my early 30's when I began therapy seriously trying to find a therapist that I felt comfortable with and for me it had to be a woman because of my Raging NF that gave me nightmares.

I found her, a psychotherapist which had a good connection to because she told me one thing that I never heard anyone say before and still remember thirty years later ęyou don't have to like your fatherĽ.   I can not even tell you how I felt, just like I had won the lottery.   ;D

I may be the black sheep of the family, but some of the white sheep are not as white as they try to appear.

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Jolie40

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Re: Interesting article on how to deal with not liking a difficult parent.
« Reply #6 on: October 09, 2020, 01:12:05 AM »
 read the article & some comments

this is what I related to from article:
"siblings brought up in the same house can have very different perspectives"


^ I have totally seen this with my siblings.....some have positives feelings re parents & not sure about others as they don't say (I was SG)

 it really is weird how parents can treat siblings SO differently

« Last Edit: October 09, 2020, 01:27:35 AM by Jolie40 »
be good to yourself