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Question
Posted by: M | 2010-02-14

Verbal Diarrhoea

CS. My husband told my 7- &  4-year old girls that I dont love them &  that I am going to leave them. He told them that I value my friends more than them, they are last on my list of important people. He carried on with them in the car for about 20 minutes. Then he acted all concerned for the 7-year old crying her eyes out. He then asked me why I dont console her, that is if I have it in me to do something so out of character. My question is this: I didnt feel at liberty to say something to her at the time. I blocked her ears &  tried to whisper that I do love her, so much. How do I minimise the damage? And if I do leave him, how do I protect them?

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

This is an awful thing for any father to do. It sounds like a temper tantrum on his part, and a wicked sense of using the kids and their upset to pressurize or get back at you - NEVER justifiable. Even if what he said was true, and I very much doubt that, telling it to the kids, and especially in that way, is simpl cruel.
Speak calmly to the kids at a suitable time, and re-assure them that none of that was true, that you do indeed love them very much and intend to always love them, and that daddy was cross with mommny and saying those things to upset you.
This sounds like an abusive relationship. LOok for support from others, and perhaps advice from POWA or some similar group

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7
Our users say:
Posted by: Maria | 2010-02-15

M, check the Divorce Support forum, there are some discussions going on about Parental Alienation Syndrom which might be applicable to you. Take care.

Reply to Maria
Posted by: M | 2010-02-15

I have two girl friends that I see about once or twice a week. Not in the evening, but during the day as I have the kids with me after school. We then visit one another with the kids. That is mostly how I get to see them. This last " session"  took place after I wanted to stay at home while he went elsewhere with the kids for the weekend. I only found out that my elderly mother would be at home by herself, after I got into the car &  we left. He knew this before. She has dementia &  gets epileptic fits if she is too stressed. Hence, the part re " The family is not important to me"  etc. Thank you for the comments Qwerty. I might have some people that can assist me.

Reply to M
Posted by: Bongi | 2010-02-15

As to how to minimise the damage - play therapy helped my kids a lot. It was expensive though (about R12 000 in total), but my medical aid paid for it.

Reply to Bongi
Posted by: Bongi | 2010-02-15

My ex-husband also said terrible things about me to my kids. Guess what - they are not stupid. They are young but they can see that you love them. They will be confused a bit by all this talk from their father but they will feel your love through your actions and they will know that he is lying. Good luck. Be strong.

Reply to Bongi
Posted by: qwerty | 2010-02-15

Are you in an abusive relationship..? It certainly sounds like it, and it sounds like you were too scared to contradict you husband at the time.

If this is the case, your question shouldn' t be " if"  you leave him, but " when" ! Do you have any family or friends who could help you get back on your feet when you leave? My heart goes out to you!! Stay strong for you children' s sake, and show them through your actions that they are the most important people in your life.

Reply to qwerty
Posted by: cybershrink | 2010-02-15

This is an awful thing for any father to do. It sounds like a temper tantrum on his part, and a wicked sense of using the kids and their upset to pressurize or get back at you - NEVER justifiable. Even if what he said was true, and I very much doubt that, telling it to the kids, and especially in that way, is simpl cruel.
Speak calmly to the kids at a suitable time, and re-assure them that none of that was true, that you do indeed love them very much and intend to always love them, and that daddy was cross with mommny and saying those things to upset you.
This sounds like an abusive relationship. LOok for support from others, and perhaps advice from POWA or some similar group

Reply to cybershrink
Posted by: Maria | 2010-02-14

M, why did he tell them those things? Can you give us a bit of context to this?

Reply to Maria

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