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Familiarity breeds contempt.

(131 Posts)
SofaHugger Sun 18-Oct-15 22:15:07

DH is a deputy head of a primary school. Kids love him, parents adore him etc etc. He's clearly good at his job and does loads and loads with every year group.

We have 2 DD's, 7 and 9. They're in a different school because of distance. He coaches them in maths and it is quite literally, hell.

I fucking hate it.

It inevitably ends up in tears with him shouting. He denies its shouting, but he doesn't appreciate what a fucking loud, shouty voice he has and especially so since he's sat next to the poor things.

One of his bugbears is that they don't answer quickly enough, so instead of giving them time to think, he repeats the sum. I've heard him repeat it louder and louder every 5 seconds or so and will ask about 7 times before DD explodes or dissolves into tears.

Did I say I fucking hate this? In the past I've 'interefered' yes DH, that's what you call it and I've copped his temper, doubly so since he says I undermine him. When I wait for the girls to be out of earshot, I'll say the same but he accuses me of saying it loud enough for the girls to hear, making me the good cop and m the bad cop.

I think his behaviour is so damaging and he doesn't see this at all. I ask him whether he treats his class kids like this but he ignores the question. He has started this treatment of 7 year old just lately and I'm feeling more and more lame and pathetic as a mother for not protecting them from this, I feel stuck. His defence is that he wants what's best for them and he doesn't want them slipping with numeracy. I argue that neither do I but his methods are tortuous and counter productive. His second defence is that I shout at them too and that I'm a hypocrite for telling him off and not supporting him. Yes, I do go off at them on occasion, about messy rooms, not listening, fighting and squabbling, risky behaviour etc. I cant put it into words but I don't feel it's the same.

I see their attitude to homework and school work changing so quickly. They hate it and things like spelling practice, handwriting practice etc etc isn't getting done on time and when it IS done, it's wrong and it's sloppy. They bloody hate it and I don't know what to do.

I've name changed for this because he knows my usual UN here and finding this thread would be the catalyst for him.

Im not even sure that any of this is in proper order and makes sense. It's all come out in a muddle. I have two unhappy girls in bed and I'm tense as hell.

I've posted here for the honesty, gloves off response. Not sure I can take it, but it can't be any worse than the atmosphere at home sad

LunchpackOfNotreDame Sun 18-Oct-15 22:19:11

He sounds knackered by his day job which has eroded his patience for tutoring the kids

Leave off the tutoring and return to family time being relaxation time. Why do they need tutoring anyway if they're in a good school?

werewolfinladderedtights Sun 18-Oct-15 22:20:43

He sounds like a dick.
Sorry I haven't got any wise words for you. But I would get pissed off in this situation. I'd probably ban him completely from having anything to do with school work for a while.

AnchorDownDeepBreath Sun 18-Oct-15 22:21:49

Why is he tutoring them?

They need him to be their dad, not their tutor. Get another one, if they need one at all.

knittingwithnettles Sun 18-Oct-15 22:35:01

Record him.

Doesn't he know that tutoring is bad for children anyway? All the independent schools now refer to it as a "scourge".

Get him to do cooking with them or measuring for some project. That's numeracy.

Tell him they love him as their dad not as their teacher. Tell him YOU love him as their Dad and not their teacher. He sounds exhausted if you ask me, and under a lot of pressure to prove that his own children are turning out well.

Book a babysitter, go out to supper with him or a film and have a chat. Away from the kids. If he says he's too busy to go out, or chat to you you have your answer that he is cracking up to some extent.

SofaHugger Sun 18-Oct-15 22:36:36

I agree with you all and have suggested it. He ignores me though and puts their good performance of National Tests down to his 'tutoring'. I see their relationship with them being eroded slowly but of course, they're children and they bounce back with him eventually. He doesn't get my concerns that this is what they are remembering more and more.

I've physically intervened at one point when they are sobbing and exhausted, and ordered them upstairs to bed, change, etc and he follows them upstairs with their books and makes them go through it again so he undermines me constantly. He never sees it like that though.

I've hidden some unfinished spelling homework from him tonight because of the response it would provoke. I'm cheesed off at DD for being so slack, but his reaction to all things with them is unbearable.

minipie Sun 18-Oct-15 22:36:50

Agree he needs to stop the tutoring.

If DH is resistant perhaps you could suggest a trial period - say, 3-6 months without him tutoring and see what happens to their schoolwork. And also see what happens to family relations. Agree to assess both at the end of thr trial period...

minipie Sun 18-Oct-15 22:39:18

Also - this may be just me and my dsis - but the more we were nagged by our parents to do homework, the less we did. It was as if it became their responsibility rather than ours iyswim.

Recording him and showing him later is a good idea.

wotoodoo Sun 18-Oct-15 22:39:24

yes, record him or set up a secret video. He sounds like a bully and a short tempered unreasonable one at that.

What are his good points?

knittingwithnettles Sun 18-Oct-15 22:39:25

Btw I wouldn't challenge him on his classroom technique. That, after all, is a whole different way to engage children. It may work much better there, the loud shouty method in school hours when you are not tired and have better things to do (as all children should after school or at the weekend)

I think you absolutely right to protect your daughters btw. And that it has to stop, but I'm just thinking of a fruitful way to make it stop, as I'm sure he is a good man underneath.

LunchpackOfNotreDame Sun 18-Oct-15 22:45:40

He's bullying them

Turn it around onto him say you've read on mumsnet about a dad being overbearing about a hobby and if it were one of his pupils what would he be saying to the parents...

Then, if he's like my DH and comes out with the model answer, ask him why he can't see that with his own kids

knittingwithnettles Sun 18-Oct-15 22:49:26

Or write him an email or a letter saying you want to talk everything through; not telling him what he has done wrong, but just how concerned you feel and how upset THREE people in the house are becoming. He is not your boss, he is your partner in bringing up the children, and you want to work in a partnership with him because schoolwork is important, but family life is more important. He must be in contact with families where the children aren't given any homework support, or have absent neglectful parents; do you think he has been conditioned by this to feel rather anxious about his own role as the perfect father/family mentor?

flixybelle Sun 18-Oct-15 22:50:33

I feel for you, my DH is a teacher too but OMG he is dreadful with our DDs when it comes to homework. I think he actually forgets to switch out of teacher mode and after a long day with other people dc his patience is thin.
It annoys me so much, I want to slap him! However dh is a fab dad and can't be perfect all the time.
Homework is now done either with me, or my sister (who picks up a few days a week.) Nothing is worth ruining father/daughter relationships.

BSites Sun 18-Oct-15 22:52:46

This is a really serious situation. You don't say what your relationship is like in other areas, but he certainly seems to think he's the boss.

Poor kids, being bullied in their own home. Very upsetting.

knittingwithnettles Sun 18-Oct-15 22:55:17

I don't think you should be trying to win or catch him out, presumably he has his good points or you wouldn't have married him, but somewhere he has lost his way; you don't want to be all teachy and preachy to him either, telling him to pull his socks up and be a better dad etc. That won't work, and you will probably both end up screaming at each other.

No, you are trying to tell him it is alright not to be the perfect deputy headmaster at home.

KingJoffreyLikesJaffaCakes Sun 18-Oct-15 22:55:17

He's a bully.

Does he make the kids at school cry? How's that working out for him?

Sounds like your children don't have a home. It's all school. Always.

knittingwithnettles Sun 18-Oct-15 23:01:31

Tbh, the bit which really worries me is that you say finding this thread would be the catalyst for him. To do what? Blame you for everything, the atmosphere, the kids misbehaving, not listening to him, sloppy spelling.

That is actually quite scary. sad

Anyway, you may have developed a phobic reaction to listening to him tutoring the children, I think you owe it to both of you to sound him out, gently at first and try and communicate more. If he throws it back in your face and continues to not listen to you, you have your answer. He IS a bully then, with issues.

AliMonkey Sun 18-Oct-15 23:12:42

I can identify with this a bit. We were encouraging DD to do practice questions to prepare for 11+ exam. My way was to say "right let's do 10 mins of maths" (and occasional longer timed tests). DH's was to insist on at least half an hour and get frustrated when she got stuck, exacerbated by doing it just before bed time as was the only time he was home. I pulled him up on it a couple of times and was accused of not caring whether she passed or not - which I guess is true as I just want her to go the school that is right for her, whichever that may be. No advice though - luckily as was preparing for exam it had an end date - although worry it will start again next time she has to sit an exam. Only thing I found that helped was to do a bit with her before he got home, so could truthfully say she had already done her maths practice, or say "my turn tonight". DH not a teacher btw.

KKCupCake Sun 18-Oct-15 23:15:46

Oh dear sofa My DM grew up in a house with a bully for a Father and it left her traumatised and scarred. Her and her DB have had self worth issues and severe depression their entire life due to their Fathers constant belittling treatment of her. DM and DU have had nothing to do with her Parents since leaving home at 16 and 17 respectively as they feel she should have intervened and are still so angry that she didn't. Sorry if that sounds scary, but really not acting now could mean you lose your DC and GDC, DB, DS, 3 Cousins and I have never met GM or GD, we also have 16 DC between us they'll never see. Your actions (or lack of) now could affect your life forever. Good luck x

nippiesweetie Sun 18-Oct-15 23:22:06

A teaching colleague of mine always used to leave homework to her non teacher husband. 'because I know it would be like having the 26th pupil of the day.' Wise woman.

mimishimmi Sun 18-Oct-15 23:25:42

Send them to a different tutor. It's hard to maintain professional boundaries when you are the parent. My dad sent me to an external guitar teacher even though he is an excellent guitarist himself.

cleaty Sun 18-Oct-15 23:26:44

What is he like the rest of the time?

ThoseAwfulCurtains Sun 18-Oct-15 23:35:34

How horrible for you and your kids. I'm a teacher but when my kids needed tutoring we paid someone else. Because I'm their mum first and foremost.

I hope he treats the kids in his school differently.

Sgtmajormummy Sun 18-Oct-15 23:36:05

You can't teach through intimidation and you can't learn through fear.

This situation needs to stop right now. In your house DH is the father and not the teacher. At 7 and 9 the DDs will soon forget about it and if he wants to coach them for the 11+ or whatever then he can do it as a project closer to the time.

At the moment all he's doing is making family life miserable. Does he eventually calm down and apologise for his woeful behaviour?

SalemSaberhagen Sun 18-Oct-15 23:37:00

The worst bit here is having to namechange. Do you think he reads your posts on here OP? The catalyst for what?

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