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How to stop DH?

(8 Posts)
snowyowls Mon 04-Apr-16 11:34:49

As a child I was reprimanded and beaten. I was told to be seen and not heard and was frightened of my DPs. It caused lots of anguish and unhappiness although I now understand that as older parents who went to boarding schools in the 1930s and 40s, my DPs belonged to a different era. To a lesser degree my DH experienced similar behaviour as he was brought up in a different culture abroad.

When I had DS I was determined to do it differently. I spoke a lot to DH about this and we agreed that we would not do physical punishments ever nor frighten our DS relying on time outs etc. Of course bringing up children is challenging and none of us remain calm all the time. But I wanted to resolve the hurt and fear that I experienced and avoid it affecting another generation in our family. Our DS is determined, sometimes to the point of frustration, but I think he is a good boy who responds well.

Recently DS told me that he never wanted his Daddy to lock him in the cellar again. DH admitted he had once got so frustrated with DS he'd locked him in the cellar. It happened quite a while ago, and DS had said nothing before but he was obviously traumatised by it.

I told DS while DH was there that I would make sure it never happened to him ever again. That evening I asked DH about it. He said DS had been very difficult and annoying and he had locked him in, in the dark, for about two minutes until DS became so frightened he let him out. I was so disappointed and angry I couldn't talk to DH. I told him I wanted to think about it. We have not spoken about it since. I know that when we talk about it we are likely to argue. DS has never reported any other incidents like this, although sometimes I have to intervene if a tired DH puts DS to bed as it can end up in irritation and tears. Otherwise DH is a good father to DS, gentle, caring and involved.

My question is how can I stop this happening again? How can I get DH back on track - if he ever was? Perhaps he was just paying lip service to me? I cannot ask DS to tell me if it ever happens again, because he'll lose faith in his father. I am not in love with DH any more. If we did not have DS, I would have left him long ago, but DS loves us both and I have decided it is better to stay. I need to resolve this somehow... If I can.

ThomasRichard Mon 04-Apr-16 13:25:06

You are unhappy in your relationship.

Your DH has terrified your son with his unacceptable behaviour.

It's your DH who needs to be working to put this right. You absolutely must raise this with him, perhaps with a neutral 3rd party present to prevent as much unpleasantess as possible.

Tootsiepops Mon 04-Apr-16 13:32:27

i would not stay with a man who locked our child in a dark cellar.

snowyowls Mon 04-Apr-16 17:20:13

Thank you ThomasRichard for reminding me it is up to him to make it right, rather than me. But the question is what could he do to make it right. Obviously I should know this, but I don't. I mean he could say he's sorry and never do it again, but obviously that wouldn't be enough...

I know there many people here would advise me to leave, or tell him to leave, Tootsiepops but at this point, I think splitting up would be more damaging for our DS.

OliviaBenson Mon 04-Apr-16 17:30:54

My mum felt the same op. What is more damaging is to stay together. You are modelling a poor relationship on him. Please find the courage to leave- your boy will be better off for it in the long run.

kiki22 Mon 04-Apr-16 18:49:38

More damage than being locked in a cellar really?! I would find it hard to believe this is the only time hes snapped and done something similar. Your damaging your son by letting this go unpunished how can he trust either of you if his father is cruel and his mother let it happen.

If my dp was as cruel as this to our son ds would watch me rain hell down on his father I would make sure my child seen I will never let anyone hurt him. I think its bloody safe to say he will have already lost faith in his father he needs to know this is not in any way acceptable to matter who it is.

ThomasRichard Mon 04-Apr-16 20:54:58

No, it's not enough for him just to say sorry and it won't happen again. He has an established pattern of losing control when caring for his child. It's not something he can 'just stop' without some sort of intervention.

The thing is that it needs to come from him really. I would be demanding that he sees his GP - emergency appointment - and that he then comes back and tells you his plan of action. It can't be swept under the rug and it can't be dealt with alone.

PennyHasNoSurname Mon 04-Apr-16 20:59:01

Your son was locked in a dark cellar and left until his dad deemed his sufficiently terrified.

Your son then kept it to himself a while.

Then he felt strong enough to confide in you.

Id say the absoloute best thing you could do for your son would be to acknowledge this awful thing his dad did and demonstrate, by separating from this vile man, that your sons happiness is your priority.

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