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Angry Ex

(21 Posts)
Paulo1 Mon 10-Oct-11 11:01:46

This is the first time I have posted on this forum but without going into too much detail do you think it is appropriate to stop our two children 13 and 10 seeing their father because even after repeatedly being asked he can not control his anger around them and it very definitely effecting both of them in different ways. The younger one has a statement for EBSD and the older one is very emotional and sensitive.
I think it is appropriate but am very wary of doing the wrong thing as they both love him and when he is not angry can be a great character and fun to be around. If I asked them they would want to keep on seeing him!
What would you do?

ChildofIsis Mon 10-Oct-11 11:14:52

I have no experience of this but didn't want to leave you unanswered.

Would a trip to your gp to discuss it help?
Or even your solicitor if you have one.

Clearly anger management classes would help but I'm assuming that the suggestion of this would make him cross.

koolaroo Mon 10-Oct-11 11:17:47

Hun ive had this problem and have had to stop contact with my 2 ds's dad. Your right to be concerned and I cant tell you what to do regarding contact but I know how the behaviour of a parent can affect the children. Mine are a lot younger and although they adored their dad he couldnt give them any kind of stability and messed them about, it has taken 10 months to get them settled and although they still mention dad they dont as much and are a lot happier. Surely your ex must be aware of the effect of his behaviour is having on the kids? Is there no where he could go with them where someone else would be about (grandparents,relatives) that could maybe assess him and make sure he keeps his behaviour in check? Have you spoken to the children about it? Personally I think if your concerned and you have already asked him to contol his anger around the children and it has been ignored then you are justified. I would give him one more warning and tell him if he cannot control his anger around his children then he clearly cannot be responsible to have access to them. Im a huge believer in fathers having access as much as possible but not when it is going to have a detrimental effect on the children and it sounds very much like it is. Good luck x

Paulo1 Mon 10-Oct-11 11:35:30

Thank you both for your replies

ChildofIsis - I have been to the GP they suggested relate not for him and I but for they boys and I. I don’t have a solicitor I didn't think it would come to that. We have spoken about anger management classes but I don’t think he has been to any and if he has it does not seem to have done any good.

Koolaroo the thing is in practical terms is responsible he has them every other weekend and pays what we have agreed he should pay. I don’t think he thinks about the effect he has on them. Normally he has them with his wife and her family but even then sometimes he struggles to keep his temper. When he has them on his own there is always an incident. Yes I have spoken to the children about it but actions speak louder then words especially with the younger. I have asked him to control his anger and I also asked his wife to have a word about it. I think the one more warning thing is good but I know that will just make him angrier and maybe take it out/exhibit it in front of them. I too wanted and believed that it is beneficial for children to see their father but I am now very much regretting that decision

koolaroo Mon 10-Oct-11 12:56:36

Well if I was you hun, I would suspend access until he can prove that he can control his anger. My eldest Ds(not ex's) grew to hate ex because of his temper/bad behaviour and it has really had an impact on him. He is having a lot of problems with aggresion (various other things too) bt he has a councilor and the things he has told her has left me mortified. Had no idea he felt the way he did and so much anger about him so it does have an impact on them and if you think it is affecting the children then I would tell him unless he learns to control his behaviour he cannot have access to them...or suggest a contact centre?? Maybe not ideal for children being the age they are but might be enough to make him sit up and take note!! He is suppossed to be the grown up and if he cant control his temper for the few hours he has his children then he needs help. Your children should not have to suffer though and you should do what you think is right x

Paulo1 Mon 10-Oct-11 13:55:13

Koolaroo
I take on all your comments and will have that conversation but feel it will do me no good whatsoever as if push comes to shove the courts will always favour on the side of the father seeing the children but also how do I know if he has learnt to control his anger as I dont spend any time with him.
If you don’t mind me asking how old is your eldest Ds and where did you access his councillor from as this is the road I am considering for mine?
xx

koolaroo Mon 10-Oct-11 14:31:21

My eldest Ds is 14 now but problems started at 11, very angry and constantly in trouble at school, it was the school who suggested the councillor and she takes Ds out of a lesson once a fortnight and talks to him. Since he has started talking his anger has subsided hugely but he also has other probs which they are looking into now but I feel horrendously guilty for not realising just how much ex's behaviour had on him. Could you have a word with your DC's school or GP? I went to Gp also and they have helped...but i had to shout, they tended to dismiss him as an attention seeker at first. Ds2 has been registered at school for SEN and his fathers behaviour has had huge impact on him too which is why I stopped access altogether. I did see a solicitor at first and tried to give him fortnightly access but it HAD to be constant...he couldnt even be bothered to reply so gave up and it was hard at first but believe they are so much better and settled now.
I would talk to the school and Gp hun, courts do take a dim view of parents denying access but if there is suspision that access is affecting the childs welfare they will listen. I feel for you, know how frustrating it is but please talk to someone x

koolaroo Mon 10-Oct-11 14:34:01

Should maybe mention I have 3 Ds's. The 2 youngest are to my ex, I have an older Ds too. Thought it might seem confusing after looking back at post!

GypsyMoth Mon 10-Oct-11 14:51:13

At those ages they would have a say themselves about what THEY want with regards to contact

They are old enough to make up own minds, perhaps not the 10 yr old just yet, but he soon will be

Is he almost 11? What do the kids want
?

cestlavielife Mon 10-Oct-11 21:31:36

Take the dc to a family therapist and see what they suggest

Paulo1 Tue 11-Oct-11 10:34:43

Thank you all for you replys
Koolaroo Dont worry I did understand about your family dynamic. With reference to your eldest son I am so glad things are improving sinse he is talking. It must bring you some peace of mind. My eldest has something simular because his 'issue' manifest itself in possible OCD tendancies and hight anxiety but as with your son sinse he started talking to us and his SENCO and Councillor he (helped by my partner and I) seems to be able to control it but my younger one's first emotion is anger which for everybody at the moment is causing pain and destress (including himself). Of cource his school is aware and they referred us to CAMHS but after several futil, in my opinion, sessions they discharged us and now are refusing a re-refferal. The school have spoken about getting behavioural support involved.
I dont know whether I feel guilty or not about exposing them to there fathers anger because they undoubtedly gain lots of other good things while visiting.
I have been to the GP and he advised we go to relate for Family Therapy (Thank you Cestlavielife smile ) which I am in the process of doing. But IF, as I do think, their fathers behavour is a magor factor to this behaviour then where do we go from here - Hence my initial post The school dont seem to want to get involved in the 'where this behaviour comes from'. Well if they do there not talking to me about it. I immagine they think CAMHS would deal with that but they didn't they just gave him stratagies to deal with his anger which he does not use or they do not work. Once again Thank you for your kind words and one positive for me it that I do take confort in talking about it and my family and friends do know the situation but nobody seems to have any constructive advise.
IloveTIFFINY - Thank you for you reply. I dont want this to sound harsh but do you think it is that simple? Surely there is other factors to take into consideration: Fear, Loyalty, Respect Family dynamic, and children dont always know whats best for them. A simplistic example to illustrate the point - if they had there own way they would eat chocolate and chips for every meal every day. Also reading threads on this site has opened my eyes to situations where adults dont even recognised they are being abused so how can we expect children to recognise that?
Once again Thank you all for your time and interest. I really do appreciate it.

Paulo1 Tue 11-Oct-11 10:50:45

Sorry IloveTIFFINY to answer your question my youngest is 10 He will be eleven in the summer 2012 and very emotionally immature.

With regards to what do the kids want? If I asked them now they would say they want to see him but we have had episodes in the past where the eldest didn't want to go for a while and every now again he will decide he doesn't want to go or gets a headache on a Friday afternoon which prevents him from going which stops after a suitable time. The youngest one has had episodes when he does not want to go and is not that keen when the eldest is not going (quite natural I thought)

cestlavielife Tue 11-Oct-11 12:45:15

i think you need to get outside view involved - so if it does come to arguing in court you have back up etc.

what about with his new family? is your ex abusive/angry towards them?

also try and speak to educaiotnal psychologist involved with your youngest and just informally explain your concerns and seek advice.

i dont think being around an angry person is good at all - even if there are periods of calm. it teaches them that anger is ok.

(of course ther are degrees and we all can get angry about something or otehr but it is how we cahnnel it and how it manifests)

Paulo1 Tue 11-Oct-11 13:31:13

Hi Cestlavielife

Yes he is abusive to his wife but for whatever reason she chooses to ignore it and live with it

When I talk to all the 'Professionals' involved with my son at first I was reluctant to mention this as it could be seen that I am trying to direct blame or that it is sour grapes (which it definitely is not) and what do I know I am a parent not a psychologist. I thought I needed to be seen to be impartial and now I have told the SENCO and headmaster my thoughts but they don’t seem to do anything about it. Although to be fair what can they VISABLY do.

I totally agree with your comment that being around an angry person who also a primary influence is not a good thing especially if they are seeing there are no consequences for that behaviour
Their Dad's anger manifests itself in verbal and emotional abuse. He makes lots of threatsbut I have never seen him physically abuse people only things although being a big chap (approx 6"5) it is frightening.

Tyr Tue 11-Oct-11 13:39:01

Exactly what harm have they come to in his care? If they were uneasy with their father, they would make it known. They love him and want to see him.
How do you know he is abusive to his new wife and is it possible you just resent him moving on?
Don't force children to choose and it is not within your gift to grant or withold access.
Drop it.

Tyr Tue 11-Oct-11 13:45:29

p.s I hope this isn't another of those gender change posters.

cestlavielife Tue 11-Oct-11 14:04:40

you cant do much about your ex.
wihtout proof/evidence/witnesses you can stop contact.

however - you /your ds can work with a therapist to channel their anger differently and not use ex as a role model.

eg my dd afterleaving e would hit ehr sister when cross and say "i couldnt help it". it took many patient times to explain yes she could help it and she could channel her emotions differnetly .

if your dc being constantly exposed to a particular role model - you need to counter it.
it if crossing into school etc then you need school/outside help

solidgoldbrass Tue 11-Oct-11 14:08:49

If he is verbally abusive to the DC to the extent that they are scared of him, you need to insist on supervised access ie with someone else there who can remove the DC or have the man removed from the situation if he can't behave himself.
Is this tiresome shithead the sort who lashes out randomly at everyone who crosses him, or is he one of those who behaves himself in public but feels entitled to abuse family members because he sees them as his property? If it's the latter, supervised access will keep the DC safe, if he is one big walking tantrum then reports of his aggressive behaviour from someone outside the family will help build you a case for stopping access altogether.

Paulo1 Tue 11-Oct-11 14:23:55

Hi Tyr
I can sense your 'defensiveness' for fatherhood and as mentioned I do/did believe that fathers should be involved in their children’s lives. Indeed I have facilitated that contact for the last nine years and there has been no physical hurt over that time apart from the usual childhood incidents and accidents.
You ask what harm has come to them. I believe lots of emotional harm has come to them through various incidents over the years which are not only getting worse but also affecting the children more deeply.
They have let me know they are uneasy with their father's behaviour at times but yes they love him
I think he is abusive to his wife as the children have witnessed and related some of this abuse.
I don’t resent him moving on as I have moved on myself but realise some might construe my worries as such.
You advise me not to force my children to choose...... but do I not have a duty to protect my children from harm which includes psychologically harm?
Thank you for your post and your opinion

Paulo1 Tue 11-Oct-11 14:25:15

PS this is not another of those gender change posters I have neither the time or the energy.

Tyr Tue 11-Oct-11 17:36:34

I am not defensive for fatherhood as such and I'd say the same whichever parent posted what you posted.

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