Posted by: frogstale | May 16, 2014

How do you teach your children to be assertive with their bullying and manipulative father?

My children’s father, my ex husband James, has all the behaviours of a narcissist/sociopath. I still get angry with the things he does, but I have learned to deal with him and his nasty ways.

I helped that I got new orders 6 months ago which leave me out of the decision making about when the children spend time with him. It is now their decision entirely.

Or is it?

They both decided they only wanted to see him for 3 days this coming school holiday. At 17, with a girlfriend, a part time job, friends, homework and a band, my eldest is a busy boy. He wanted to spend more time at home with his mates and has got fed up of spending most of his holidays interstate with his father. Even the 13 year old, who still partially hero worships his father, only wanted to go for 3 days.

I encouraged them to tell their dad but I didn’t interfere – I left the phone calls up to them as I always do.

What did their father do?

Book the flights (only way they can see him) so that they have to go for 6 days.

His excuse?

There weren’t any other flights available. Yeah, right, I believe that one from the lying bastard.

Why did he do this?

It could have been many reasons:

  • The flights for the three days were too expensive – but he earns around $300,000 a year!
  • If they only go for three days it takes the nights he has them under a threshold and I could then apply for more child support.
  • He wouldn’t look good if they only went for 3 days, after all he has a part to play to his audience – father of the year
  • He wants to exert his power and control over someone, and as it is no longer me, maybe he has turned it towards the kids

Whatever the reason, my 17 year old was not comfortable saying anything to his dad about the extra days.

I don’t know how to help him. I can’t interfere. I don’t know what was said. I don’t know and can only guess they are being guilted and manipulated into this.

I can only encourage my son to speak up in future, give him moral support for his choices and talk to him about being assertive.

He is going to have to learn the hard way what his father is really like and how to deal with him.

I can share my techniques but he needs to be ready to listen.

Do you have any other suggestions?

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