Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, see our mental health web guide which can point you to expert advice.

The lies I told haunt me

(13 Posts)
hellhasnofurylikeahungrywoman Tue 04-Aug-15 21:43:09

I lied to the children many years ago, hid the truth. Big lies, but I couldn't see another way. I still don't think there was another way. The lies didn't change the truth. They didn't diminish the situation but they were lies. We always promise not to lie to our kids don't we? This year the guilt seems worse for some reason. The kids are adults know, they know the truth, they think I did the right thing but I cannot (will not?) forgive myself.

hesterton Tue 04-Aug-15 21:44:56

Why on earth not? It all sounds a bit emotionally masochistic.

Be kind to yourself.

hellhasnofurylikeahungrywoman Tue 04-Aug-15 21:51:12

I have never asked myself that and I should.

Given the same situation again I would do it again so I guess I should slap myself and realise I did what I had to do. I am not good at being kind to me, an abusive childhood put paid to that but I have largely moved on and it's time I put this to bed too.

Fugghetaboutit Tue 04-Aug-15 21:52:09

They've forgiven you. It's time to forgive yourself.

jellyjiggles Tue 04-Aug-15 21:52:24

Ah yes the guilt thing is a sod to shift at times op.

The thing is it's actually not down to you to forgive yourself IMO.

You say your kids know and understand. Phew! Job done! They are the best to judge in this instance. It's not you that's the judge.

Seriously your punishing yourself for something that happened so long time ago. You did what you thought to be right at that time and your adult children agree with you op!

Your being unnecessarily hard on yourself.

Nobody is perfect! Everyone makes mistakes! At the time you made your decision you did it with the best will of your children at heart!

Your not a machine. Your a human being. Give yourself a break op.

Guilt isn't a useful emotion its destructive. Don't destroy yourself over something that happened years ago.

Your not a bad person winkthanks

WishIwasanastronaut Tue 04-Aug-15 21:53:30

Do you want to talk about it? We're here if you do.

Are you having any kind of counselling or therapy?

Do you have anyone in RL you can talk to?

hellhasnofurylikeahungrywoman Wed 05-Aug-15 20:32:25

I have had counselling in the past but not for this.

When my DD was young one of her friends went missing with another child. The news broke on a Monday, the following Saturday (while the friend was still missing) we went on holiday, the area we holidayed in had no phone signal, few shops and no TV so when her friend's body was found a few days before we were due to come home we chose not to to tell her. When I say 'we' I mean me and DH but it was my decision to hide the truth. We were able to avoid the news, we kept away from areas where the kids might see billboards etc, didn't listen to the radio (except for stations broadcast in the language of the country we were in as they weren't broadcast in English) and avoided answering questions about what was happening back home. On our last day my SIL who was with us and staying on for an extra week, offered for our kids to stay with her but I wanted them to hear the news from us and not run the risk of the children finding out and SIL having to deal with the fallout so we sat them down and told them that their friend and classmates (DS was in the same class) had been found and they had been killed. We told them that two people had been arrested and it was people they knew. It was cowardly not to tell them as soon as we knew. I felt knowing the truth would ruin their holiday before we needed to.

Getting hung up on this is stupid. I don't know what telling them earlier would've achieved but I have always told them not to lie, to tell me the truth no matter what and I didn't live by that standard.

MiscellaneousAssortment Wed 05-Aug-15 21:52:14

You made the decision to let your children carry on living in a world without that terrible tragedy in it.

You let them have a holiday and then you told them something that children shouldn't have to hear or have to come to terms with. That's big. That's not evil of you. That's being a parent, making decisions for the good of your children. That's not done selfish or inexplicable lie that would come back to haunt you and them.

Maybe you selfishly wanted to have that nice time with your little ones, that you couldn't bear for it to spoil a much longer for or saved for holiday? Maybe that's why you feel such huge guilt? But that's ok to have felt like that if you did, you are a human, and that would be a very human thing to do.

I know something about not being able to make your child's life what it should be, and having to be the one to change their world by telling them something really bad. It's something I struggle with everyday, not for the same reasons but with a similiar result.

All you can do is help them understand at the right moment and in the right way, and just be there to help them deal with the emotions you can't save them from. And that's what you did. And what I'm trying to do.

If my ds grows up to tell me I did anything right like that, I'll know I did ok in my flawed and human way. I think you should grab onto that, what your children think.

I didn't tell ds my father, his grandpa had died. Not for days. I didn't want him to feel my grief, my pain and I just wanted him to live in a world where he had his grandpa, who was more like a father to ds than a grandpa, just a bit longer.

UnbelievableBollocks Wed 05-Aug-15 23:21:41

Everyone lies to their kids at some point. Everyone.

However in his case you didn't actually lie to them, you just didn't tell them straight away.

IHeartKingThistle Wed 05-Aug-15 23:26:52

thanks

I would have done the same.

Lolimax Wed 05-Aug-15 23:30:33

Life never comes with a manual and the circumstances you are talking about are horrific and certainly something you can never ever prepare for. I suppose I can make an educated guess at the case you are talking about and if I'm right then how on earth would you have been prepared for that? You did what you thought was right at the time, and would do so again. All you want to do as parents is protect your children, and that's what you did. Please take comfort from that and know you made the best decision you possibly could.

Rainicorn Wed 05-Aug-15 23:30:58

IMO you did the right thing. Keeping this news for a few days, I doubt had any impact on them finding out.

WanderingTrolley1 Thu 06-Aug-15 23:02:20

You did the right thing, OP.

Please don't beating yourself up over it. flowers

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now