My dad was abusive to my mom and us kids growing up. He still scares me.

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As a kid he was cruel with his words and hands. Even now, he is old, and sometimes I see that rage in his eyes again. my husband and I are still young (40) we had our children young, and have 4 grandchildren.It was their room we gave to him. We adore these babies and used to have them over as often as possible. Now Im afraid of what he might do to one of them, so they almost never come now, and if they do I try to keep them away from him. He talks to them the way he did to us. he says mean things and tries to correct them even when its not apropriate. he says hes teaching them right, however I dont see how sternly telling a 18 mo old child that they need to color it the lines is teaching. Its mean. and shes a baby, just learning fine motor skills. I dont want her to be afraid to come to Nana and Papas house. But more than that I dont want any of them to have that fear I had as a child. I cant point this out because the past he remembers does'nt include the terrorizing of his family. when I tried to tell him he would not be allowed to bully my family he told my husband " shes crazy, I never mistreated my family, its all bullshit" So not only was he mean he lies about it. Not that i want to say "look here this is what you did" The past is gone. I just want my babies to feel safe, I want to feel as though they're safe. Im afraid as his dementia progresses this will worsen. I worked in a nursing home when I was younger. A fancy one for people with private pay, and the day i walked off my job I told my boss I would not put my dog in a nursing home. But I may have to put my father there. The guilt is terrible heavy. But I love them more.

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My 0.02 worth, based on the information given, would be to put him in a NH and let Medicaid take care of the cost...if he has any property or a home, use that directly toward that and get him out of your home ASAP.
Your husband may not understand but it doesn't matter. It is the two of you's home but he is your father and you KNOW he was abusive and you KNOW he potentially still is (I'd say if he had the chance, it is very likely so don't take that chance)...and your grandchildren do not deserve to be fearful nor do any of you deserve to be deprived of bonding and spending time together because of your father's abusive nature.

Karma is a b****, as they say...and you get what you pay for. No one made him abuse you all and if he winds up in a NH and hates it...he still is getting off easier than you and your siblings did. It is the kindest thing for all concerned, IMO.
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wow this is all the best advice I've ever seen you do need to get your dad out of your house I got my 2 sons away from my mom. 2 one way tickets to Hawaii but they were over 21 and not tied down. But you have grandchildren and children that have lives. God Bless you. Please keep in contact with the log.
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Get your Dad out of your house. You are letting him stay in charge. Don't let him control you any longer. The stakes are too high - your happiness and mental health and your grand-kids safety.
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These stories are so heartfelt. God bless you all. My mom has always been not so nice we were latchkey kids day and night lived with 2 different relatives I called her by her name for the longest time. She's slapped me several times as a child and as an adult. She never stops talking if shes not right, then she gets mad and will not talk for at least 1-2 hrs. that's when I get a break. So sometimes I cant go on here because I'm busy cleaning up all her messes. Kissing her butt and listening to her non stop gossip all day long. I get tired then sleep for 4 hrs every night. Once u help her your doing everything and it never stops. She wants me to put her pills in the boxes but then accuses me of stealing them. She call me a liar a bad daughter and stealer. I haven't had a date for a year I rarely leave this apt. My sister will not come over ever. she talks back about my sweet dead relatives.The ones that are alive make excuses not to come over. I just want to say Hey you are mean and you complain way to much now one wants to here that. But I don't. I breathe and keep listening. And pray to God she'll go to Heaven.
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Your father doesn't remember being abusive because he never saw what he did as abuse. Most abusers don't.

Amy Tan, author of The Joy Luck Club, wrote about a conversation with her demented mother who said, "I think I wasn't always a good mother, but I can't remember." I forget the answer, but Amy Chan was able to forgive and reassure her mother.

If your husband has sympathy for your father, he has to lay down the law to him, man to man. If he won't do it, or if it doesn't work - it probably won't - you need to get him out of your house. The NH will put him on antipsychotics or antidepressants, and he won't be able to refuse to take them. The right meds will turn him into a somewhat nicer person. Put him in the NH. Don't feel guilty.
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Your children/grandchildren will see you stand up to someone abusive, and will not be abusive to you. You cannot reason with your Dad who was abusive, so you'll just have to figure out how to deal with this. Don't worry, he's an angry man who will never see that what he did was wrong. Your children/grandchildren however will feel your love/strength and reward you for standing up to the abusive person and getting them out of their lives by refusing to be in his presence. You cannot tell any child they are doing something wrong unless they hurt someone. Look how your self esteem was hurt that you are letting him have power over your sense of what is right/wrong. "No one can take advantage of you unless you let them"= Eleanor Roosevelt. Take care of yourself, your grandchildren. Let the old codger think what he may, but he doesn't deserve the respect he's "commanding". Respect is earned, not a right. Time to stand up to the abuser by refusing to participate. For free help contact Al-Anon. It will help you deal with his alcoholic behavior, even if he's never had a drop. You're doing this to stop they cycle of abuse. A lasting gift to your family, and most importantly your own physical/mental health. Time to find a place that will accept the abuser. It won't be easy, but it's the right thing to do. God Bless and keep you as you heal, and as your family sees you leave a legacy of the right thing to do when someone cannot see their abuse as wrong, and you cannot try to prove you're sane to a crazy person. Been there. Done that.
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The psycho-dynamics of abusive behaviors are pretty classic.
Your feeling guilty is classic reaction to having been abused/manipulated.
PLEASE get your Dad OUT of your home, into non-family shelter--a facility-- that can deal with it appropriately...you deserve better.
PLEASE find some counseling help for yourself, too, to help you understand what happened to you, and learn better tools for coping better with life, to help you avoid anyone else doing to you what your Dad did. --those who have been abused, tend to get steam-rollered by others in our life who do similarly to us--UNTIL we learn better to "see those trains coming" and get off the tracks!

Please keep us posted!
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...flaky mouse is sending things faster than I can think and type!
In our family, abusive/controlling/manipulative behaviors have continued through at least 3+ generations that I know of for sure. Likely longer than that.
But every once in awhile, one child in a generation will choose to leave the family and never look back, or, block the offender from their lives to protect their own kids, for instance.
The ones who return to try and patch things up, hoping the offending parent will somehow show their "better self", usually end up getting further destroyed.
When there is abuse by a parent, there is no really safe way to have them in your home. You WILL be abused further, and your children and grandchildren are at risk, too.
A chronic abuser needs to be placed in a care home run by others. You can still be their advocate, if that works out. You can still visit, if you wish or if you can.
BUt allowing them into your home is a huge mistake.
Our son still cannot bring himself to come to our home anymore, after he experienced what Mom did under our roof...even though she got moved out of here, he still cannot deal with the triggers inherent in visiting this place.
Find your Dad a more appropriate place to live!!!
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So much good advice!
It is so hard, growing up like that. We carry the after-effects of that trauma, thru our lives--the best we can do is learn to deal better with all the triggers for that trauma, and learn to protect our children from it better than our parents did.
Abuse usually travels from generation to generation, in one form or another, unless and until at least one child stands up and chooses to stop allowing it in their lives any longer.
An abuser can be so subtle, other siblings do not see it, leaving the abused kid[s] on their own to figure out how to survive.
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It seems to me that the only way to make sure that your father does not EVER abuse your grandchildren is to NEVER have them in the same house together. It only takes a moment - while passing in the hall, when you run to answer an important phone call, while you are in the bathroom, when he has unsupervised access to one of them, for irreparable harm to be done. It does not matter what kinds of verbal boundaries you set or what rules you give him, he will not honor those boundaries any moment he is given a chance to act the way he wants to. And your grandchildren may never tell you, for all the reasons that children who are victims of abuse don't tell - the abuser threatens to hurt them more, or to hurt people/ pets the child loves if they tell, or fear no one will believe them, or fear of tearing the family apart if they tell, etc. They will just live with it, and they will be changed. It does not matter that he denies being abusive in the past, you've seen him be mean to an 18 month old baby. If he has treated that child that meanly in front of you, what might he do in a moment that you are not there to challenge him? That is enough evidence for you to justify (to yourself and to him, and to your husband) getting him out of your home. You don't need him to agree with you, or to admit anything - he never will, so don't spend any time waiting for him to. What matters is what YOU know and how YOU feel. YOU are afraid for their safety and for their innocent hearts. Don't let him suck you into any arguments over it, just get him out, whatever way you can. I know, easier said than done. I think of all the stories I've heard about women who were victims of domestic violence for years and finally somehow got the courage to leave when they saw that their children were being, or were about to be hurt. A good place to start might be to call the Alzheimer's Association's 24-hr helpline. They are incredibly kind, compassionate and knowledgeable, and they will listen with understanding and give you referrals and send you whatever materials you need to point you in the right direction. But until he is out of your home, do not have your grandchildren over. That is the only way you can be 100% sure that they won't be hurt by him.

It will take a lot of strength, but you can do it. Be strong, girl. We are all pulling for you, and for your grandchildren.
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