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Question
Posted by: Concerned Mum | 2010/11/30

My daugther

Hi CS. It is with a very heavy heart that I write this post. I don''t know how to address this situation, for fear of causing a family feud. I am concerned about my daughter and the way she treats those around her. She appears to have anger management issues, and takes her anger out on those around her. Not physically, but verbally. I am extremely concerned about my grandchildren (one in particular) who are caught in the middle of this. She also has a very obvious favourite of her children, and although I have addressed this with her, she simply will not see that there is a problem or that she oabiously favours one child. The eldest child has, in my opinion, far too much responsibility placed on her for a child of 8 and is always getting into trouble for things that she did not do. She is forever being yelled at to clean up her sisters room, pick up the toys, hang up wet towels etc, that the younger one leaves lying around. The youngest lies incredibly, denying that she did anything wrong, and loves playing on the fact that she is a " baby" , although she is 6, hence the eldest gets into trouble. The more the little soul tries to ask why she has to do things that her sister should be doing, the more trouble she gets into for daring to ask, and gets yelled at even more. Whenever my daughter speaks to her husband and children, it is with such anger and almost a tone of " hate"  - and this is killing me, as I don''t know how to approach this situation. I have been very worried for a long while now, but have not said anything to anyone, because I maybe did not want to acknowledge that there was a problem with MY child. The cherry now is that her sibling has just come back from spending time with her, and has come to me in confidence, to say that she is very worried about her sister, as something is drastically wrong. She has also observed all the same charactheristics that I have mentioned about her as well as the behaviour towards her chilren and husband. This has made me realise that I just have to find a way around this issue. Yes - I admit I am afraid of my daughter (so are her siblings and her father). I am not afraid of her physically, by I am afraid of her because of the way I know she will react and because she is very head strong, and very " angry" , and I am scared that she will " write us off"  for daring to get involved. My primary concern are the small chilren in this, but just how and what do I do. Please help me to figure out how to get this resolved.

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

I understand your concerns. a 6-year-old is not a baby, and it sounds as though this one is being trained to be a selfish, dishonest and spoiled brat. And when she moves outisde Mommy's care, she will be bitterly disappointed to discover that others in the world don't give her the same privileges.
Ironical, isn't it, that you have difficulty admitting something is wrong with YOUR child - part ofwhose problem is her difficulty in admitting that there is anything wrong with HER child ?
Its helpful to have the unsolicted confirmation from your other daughter than you are right in your concerns. DO you know how the husband feels about all of this ( he has to be aware of it, maybe fels hopeless too ? ) and it may be worth tactfully approaching him and discussing the issue with him ?
Counselling could help, but of course would only be able to do so if she acknowledged that there was a problem needing solution. You have the problem of lacking what the lawyers would call locus standi - a position giving you an unassailable right to intervene. If there are serious concerns about the children, Child Welfare might be able to help - but they tend to concentrate on gross physical abuse and neglect rather than on these equally important but more subtle forms of abuse and neglect.

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3
Our users say:
Posted by: Janine | 2010/12/20

Dear Concerned Mum, I think everybody - ie do you have other sons/ daughters/ your husband/ her husband? excluding the children, should sit her down and categorically tell her what a big bully she is to her older child, and that she needs to address her behaviour because what she is doing is abusive - not only to the older child but also to the younger (for allowing her to be the ''baby'' and to be deceitful to get out of doing things she should be doing). Your daughter needs to be woken up to these facts before she does more damage to her kids and those around her. If she then tells you all to get lost, so be it - at least you tried. But I do believe that when someone is told in no uncertain terms how they are affecting others, they will usually sit up and take notice. A bully will carry on for as long as they are allowed to. Don''t let this hurt your granddaughter any longer. Good luck

Reply to Janine
Posted by: Jordan | 2010/12/01

Gosh, thats a difficult situation you are in. But some people are just like that, always cross. You will find that as the little one gets older she will probably find fault with things that she does. My only advice to you is just to be there for the older one, encourage her to not take it to heart and just be strong. When she gets older she will be able to stand up for herself. Unfortunately you wont be able to change your daughters character. But I know some people that are like that. They are just miserable sods and nothing is ever good enough and they are always complaining. In fact, I work with someone like that. I feel so sorry for her family. They look exhausted and her husband doesn''t even work, but looks like he has been beaten up verbally. Stay strong and pray. Good luck.

Reply to Jordan
Posted by: cybershrink | 2010/11/30

I understand your concerns. a 6-year-old is not a baby, and it sounds as though this one is being trained to be a selfish, dishonest and spoiled brat. And when she moves outisde Mommy's care, she will be bitterly disappointed to discover that others in the world don't give her the same privileges.
Ironical, isn't it, that you have difficulty admitting something is wrong with YOUR child - part ofwhose problem is her difficulty in admitting that there is anything wrong with HER child ?
Its helpful to have the unsolicted confirmation from your other daughter than you are right in your concerns. DO you know how the husband feels about all of this ( he has to be aware of it, maybe fels hopeless too ? ) and it may be worth tactfully approaching him and discussing the issue with him ?
Counselling could help, but of course would only be able to do so if she acknowledged that there was a problem needing solution. You have the problem of lacking what the lawyers would call locus standi - a position giving you an unassailable right to intervene. If there are serious concerns about the children, Child Welfare might be able to help - but they tend to concentrate on gross physical abuse and neglect rather than on these equally important but more subtle forms of abuse and neglect.

Reply to cybershrink

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