Is my dad emotionally abusive?

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Anonymous #1
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I am 17 and I think my dad is emotionally abusive and so does my mum. My mum and dad are separated. My dad gets angry at me on a weekly basis and insults me almost every time I see him. He tells me I am unloveable, unlikeable, mean, unkind, selfish, getting fat, that I am turning into my mother (yes that is used as an insult and he picks out all of my mum's bad qualities), he has said that I abhorrent to him, I disgust him and he wants me to go and live with my mother and he looks forward to it when I am not at home.

Obviously these are hurtful things but he also punishes me for small things like not peeling potatoes quick enough and says that he will remove all funding for tennis (my main sport) if I misbehave towards him i.e. I might answer back because no one else is here to defend me. To give you both sides of the story my dad does pay for school fees and tennis coaching etc.

So am I overreacting or is this emotional abuse?
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robthefool
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Sounds like emotional abuse to me..
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Sparkle24
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It sounds like emotional abuse to me too.
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Guy Secretan
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are you a girl or boy he is also kind of blackmailing you with the tennis couching thing
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Elspeth*
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Are you scared of him? Are you walking on eggshells? Do you doubt yourself?
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Anonymous #1
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(Original post by Guy Secretan)
are you a girl or boy he is also kind of blackmailing you with the tennis couching thing
I am a girl. He is blackmailing me but he has never carried through his threat ... yet.

(Original post by Elspeth*)
Are you scared of him? Are you walking on eggshells? Do you doubt yourself?
I am extremely scared of him when he is angry, not so much when he is not angry but worried that he will flip. Yes I feel like I am walking on eggshells and yep I doubt myself.
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Elspeth*
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Where you say about peeling potatoes too slowly, can you recount the conversation and how it went?
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Anonymous #2
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(Original post by Anonymous)
I am 17 and I think my dad is emotionally abusive and so does my mum. My mum and dad are separated. My dad gets angry at me on a weekly basis and insults me almost every time I see him. He tells me I am unloveable, unlikeable, mean, unkind, selfish, getting fat, that I am turning into my mother (yes that is used as an insult and he picks out all of my mum's bad qualities), he has said that I abhorrent to him, I disgust him and he wants me to go and live with my mother and he looks forward to it when I am not at home.

Obviously these are hurtful things but he also punishes me for small things like not peeling potatoes quick enough and says that he will remove all funding for tennis (my main sport) if I misbehave towards him i.e. I might answer back because no one else is here to defend me. To give you both sides of the story my dad does pay for school fees and tennis coaching etc.

So am I overreacting or is this emotional abuse?
I had a similar situation when I lived at home. I was also told that I was overweight and unlovable and he told that I'd never be able to find a job. My dad also paid for my school fees so I was to scared to say anything. It affected my confidence a lot (and it still does).

I think the best thing you can do is move away when you go to uni (preferably far away). It was the best decision I ever made and even my relationship with my dad got better after I lived away for a few of years. We talked about what happened about two years ago and I don't think he realised at the time how much he hurt me (although I'm still finding it difficult to believe).
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chocolatesauce
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why do you have to see him?
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Elspeth*
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Also you say you are scared he'll flip ?
What has made you feel this way? Is it his body language , his tone, his words( you've already told us he's communicated some hurtful nasty and disrespectful things to you) .
Its really good you can tell your mum about it, are you close?
What happens if you try to tell your dad how he is making you feel?
lastly, do you think he's always been like this?
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Anonymous #1
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(Original post by Elspeth*)
Where you say about peeling potatoes too slowly, can you recount the conversation and how it went?
Well I was peeling some potatoes for tea and he said 'peel them faster', so I tried to, to which he resulted in shouting 'why do I have to do everything myself? You can't even peel some f-ing potatoes! You are useless!...' his rant went on for some time like a good 10/15 minutes and even after that he continued to insult me.


(Original post by chocolatesauce)
why do you have to see him?
1) he is my dad
2) he pays for my school fees and tennis coaching


(Original post by Elspeth*)
Also you say you are scared he'll flip ?
What has made you feel this way? Is it his body language , his tone, his words( you've already told us he's communicated some hurtful nasty and disrespectful things to you) .
Its really good you can tell your mum about it, are you close?
What happens if you try to tell your dad how he is making you feel?
lastly, do you think he's always been like this?
Yeah I am scared that he will suddenly turn and become really angry, which happens a lot. All of them to be honest.
I am not that close with my mum, but he acted this way towards her when they were together and she sometimes sees him get angry at me.
I have previously told me dad how I feel and I got two different reactions. First reaction was sympathetic and apologetic, second was the opposite and blamed me and said I was so sensitive.
I think he has got a lot worse in the last few years but to a certain extent yes I think he has always been like it
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Elspeth*
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He's controlling. He's lost the control over your mum, now he's trying to control you.

There are 4 main types of emotional abuse from a parent
Verbal assault. Your parent/s verbally assault you in every way possible. They may blow your flaws out of proportion, make fun of you, call you names, berate you, scream at you, threaten you or criticize you. They may blame you for everything or humiliate you with sarcasm and endless insults. Over time, this type of abuse can completely destroy a person's feelings of self worth and self esteem.

Emotional neglect. Your parent may supply you with all of your physical and material needs, but completely neglect your emotional ones. They may show no love or affection, continually ignore you, or refuse to support you during times of emotional need.

Invalidation. Closely linked and overlapped with emotional neglect, invalidation occurs when the victim's feelings and needs are completely invalidated, usually with harmful intent. A good example is when the victim tries to confront the parent/s about the abuse; the child may be told “I never do that”, “You think too much”, “You shouldn’t be upset about that”, or “You are exaggerating.” The abuser usually controls the victim’s emotions by telling the victim that those feelings and opinions are wrong, by continually ignoring and rejecting emotional needs, and influencing the victim feel as though there is something wrong with him/her. Invalidation can also be done passively, for example, when a victim tries to confide in a parent about a problem and is told that the problem is not really an issue, or that the child should simply get over it. Invalidation is particularly damaging, as it leads the victim to think that s/he is wrong, stupid to feel this way, undeserving of any feelings at all

Unrealistic expectations; unrealistic or impossible expectations such as perfection or forcing the child to be someone s/he simply isn’t, are placed on the victim, and if these expectations are not met, the victim is criticised or even punished.




NONE OF THIS IS YOUR FAULT.
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FAN13
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It's definately emotional abuse. Dissaciate yourself from him immediately...i had to do something similiar to my dad and it worked out. It will work out for you as well.
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FAN13
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(Original post by Anonymous)
I am a girl. He is blackmailing me but he has never carried through his threat ... yet.



I am extremely scared of him when he is angry, not so much when he is not angry but worried that he will flip. Yes I feel like I am walking on eggshells and yep I doubt myself.

Sports coaching is not worht the emotional abuse trust me. I have been through the similiar path you are on and i stuck with the abuse to play sports. And it was not WORTH IT. unless you are on track to be making millions of dollars in the next few months....such a thing just isn't worth it. Not to mention....it's just coaching you can get better by yourself...just watch the motion of the pros and how they play.
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Anonymous #1
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(Original post by Elspeth*)
He's controlling. He's lost the control over your mum, now he's trying to control you.

There are 4 main types of emotional abuse from a parent
Verbal assault. Your parent/s verbally assault you in every way possible. They may blow your flaws out of proportion, make fun of you, call you names, berate you, scream at you, threaten you or criticize you. They may blame you for everything or humiliate you with sarcasm and endless insults. Over time, this type of abuse can completely destroy a person's feelings of self worth and self esteem.

Emotional neglect. Your parent may supply you with all of your physical and material needs, but completely neglect your emotional ones. They may show no love or affection, continually ignore you, or refuse to support you during times of emotional need.

Invalidation. Closely linked and overlapped with emotional neglect, invalidation occurs when the victim's feelings and needs are completely invalidated, usually with harmful intent. A good example is when the victim tries to confront the parent/s about the abuse; the child may be told “I never do that”, “You think too much”, “You shouldn’t be upset about that”, or “You are exaggerating.” The abuser usually controls the victim’s emotions by telling the victim that those feelings and opinions are wrong, by continually ignoring and rejecting emotional needs, and influencing the victim feel as though there is something wrong with him/her. Invalidation can also be done passively, for example, when a victim tries to confide in a parent about a problem and is told that the problem is not really an issue, or that the child should simply get over it. Invalidation is particularly damaging, as it leads the victim to think that s/he is wrong, stupid to feel this way, undeserving of any feelings at all

Unrealistic expectations; unrealistic or impossible expectations such as perfection or forcing the child to be someone s/he simply isn’t, are placed on the victim, and if these expectations are not met, the victim is criticised or even punished.

NONE OF THIS IS YOUR FAULT.
My dad does not emotionally neglect me. He does tell me that he loves me and is there for me in moments of need. However he has another side to him which only those close to him see and unfortunately I think he does do the other three to varying degrees. However he sometimes does acknowledge that he has been mean to me, on the other hand I don't think he will ever acknowledge this as emotional abuse.

(Original post by FAN13)
Sports coaching is not worht the emotional abuse trust me. I have been through the similiar path you are on and i stuck with the abuse to play sports. And it was not WORTH IT. unless you are on track to be making millions of dollars in the next few months....such a thing just isn't worth it. Not to mention....it's just coaching you can get better by yourself...just watch the motion of the pros and how they play.
Its not just sports coaching, its the school fees as well and also the support my dad gives me through my education. As rude and horrible my dad is to me he does help me with my studies. I have one more year and then I am hopefully going to uni and after that I am planning on distancing myself from him and I have already begun to (however he noticed this and got angry again). I have put up with this my whole life, I can deal with it for another year. I started this thread for the sole purpose of finding out whether I was being over dramatic or whether this was in fact emotional abuse and I guess my question has been answered, which in a strange way is rather consoling
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Elspeth*
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Bless you
I am concerned about you and I advise you to reach out and get some support.

The thing with abuse is that victims typically don't realise they are being abused.you don't know what" normal " behaviour is because you don't experience it much.

You are now at the point where you are one step ahead.
Please speak to your doctor sometime soon about getting counselling.
or contact womens aid who will tell you other places you can get counselling.
Womens aid is the organization that deals with abuse, you can speak to them, Samaritans are a good listening ear too.

it is strangely consoling I agree when you get your feelings validated.
Instead of thinking you are going mad you start to realise" ah oh yes, it all makes sense now-it wasn't me-it was you"
you may want to get your feelings out about this in a safe environment-counselling is perfect for this.

How DARE he treat you, his precious daughter like this.
www.womensaid.org.uk
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Anonymous #1
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(Original post by Elspeth*)
Bless you
I am concerned about you and I advise you to reach out and get some support.

The thing with abuse is that victims typically don't realise they are being abused.you don't know what" normal " behaviour is because you don't experience it much.

You are now at the point where you are one step ahead.
Please speak to your doctor sometime soon about getting counselling.
or contact womens aid who will tell you other places you can get counselling.
Womens aid is the organization that deals with abuse, you can speak to them, Samaritans are a good listening ear too.

it is strangely consoling I agree when you get your feelings validated.
Instead of thinking you are going mad you start to realise" ah oh yes, it all makes sense now-it wasn't me-it was you"
you may want to get your feelings out about this in a safe environment-counselling is perfect for this.

How DARE he treat you, his precious daughter like this.
www.womensaid.org.uk
He would say though that i do little to help at home and therefore dont help to calm his anger. Which i have to admit is true i dont do much at home, i only stack the dishwasher, clean the sides and occasionally unload the washing machine or dust/hoover. So does this change your opinion in any way because if i am not helping out as much as i should am i not sort of bringing it on myself?
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awe
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Elspeth has pretty much got this covered in my opinion, but I would just say could you try directly confronting him? I know it may seem rash, however, I grew up in a loosely similar situation with my father who didn't realise how he was treating me. It wasn't nearly as severe as this and I appreciate the situations are different, however I still received unjustified negative treatment from him that my sisters did not. I remember asking him once why he was like this and he did as you say yours did - sympathetic at first, but then defensive and aggressive.
The thing that ultimately made things change was when I was a little older, maybe 16, I demanded he stop treating me that way. I made it clear that he was not being a good father to me and would lose me if our relationship wasn't improved. That was important; it's a harsh truth that your father may need to understand. Things still aren't great but we are both happy with the closeness, or sometimes lack thereof, of our relationship.
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Anonymous #1
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(Original post by awe)
Elspeth has pretty much got this covered in my opinion, but I would just say could you try directly confronting him? I know it may seem rash, however, I grew up in a loosely similar situation with my father who didn't realise how he was treating me. It wasn't nearly as severe as this and I appreciate the situations are different, however I still received unjustified negative treatment from him that my sisters did not. I remember asking him once why he was like this and he did as you say yours did - sympathetic at first, but then defensive and aggressive.
The thing that ultimately made things change was when I was a little older, maybe 16, I demanded he stop treating me that way. I made it clear that he was not being a good father to me and would lose me if our relationship wasn't improved. That was important; it's a harsh truth that your father may need to understand. Things still aren't great but we are both happy with the closeness, or sometimes lack thereof, of our relationship.
Unfortunately thats simply not possible. If i confronted my dad (i have done something similar before but not quite as confrontational it was more of an implication) then he would be furious and threaten to take away my financial backing for tennis and not drive me to tennis training etc. if i do that then another argument/him shouting at me will ensue. But thank you for the reply
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awe
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(Original post by Anonymous)
Unfortunately thats simply not possible. If i confronted my dad (i have done something similar before but not quite as confrontational it was more of an implication) then he would be furious and threaten to take away my financial backing for tennis and not drive me to tennis training etc. if i do that then another argument/him shouting at me will ensue. But thank you for the reply
Yes, I thought that would be a likely answer but doesn't hurt to suggest I suppose! Very sorry for the situation you're in, I know it's unfortunately not always as easy as 'just leave'.
Can you keep yourself out of the house for as long as possible? Obviously you have tennis and I assume school, but perhaps some volunteering or part-time work? You could just tell your father that you're trying to make your CV as attractive as possible with these things etc, whereas I imagine if you spent too much time at a friend's house he could question it more aggressively.
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