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Treated unfairly by DF. What would you do? AIBU?

(20 Posts)
Upnotdown Sun 16-Jun-13 08:52:58

Sorry if this is garbled -im typing on my phone...

I feel so hurt by my DF. He and DM split when me and my sis were little. He remarried and then had 3 stepchildren too. Family always said we were treated unfairly (his side) and regularly called him on it. We just got on with it, saw him when he wanted us. He did not pay maintenance to my DM ever. When I was 19, he had another child, my half brother.

Anyway - this week it was my birthday. He phones me up saying 'I want to bring your card - been calling all day' so he tirns up with my half brother. My sis was here too. He hands me a card but no gift and says 'Ill take you for a meal in two weeks. I m taking you to.....'. I was a bit hurt because I thought he could have bought a box of chocs or a token gift.

He then proceeds to tell me that he bought my brother a motorbike 2 days earlier. I felt like someone had stuck a knife in me.

AIBU to think its time to cit contact?

Upnotdown Sun 16-Jun-13 09:06:17

Also meant to add, my eldest is 13. DF has took him on a day out once. He lives 10 miles away. He didnt turn up at easter, either. These are just the occasions Im pointing out as we dont really see him in between. He works away - we only find out hes been home afterwards or via photos on FB. That said, if I say anything on FB/Twitter he gets huffy and phones me to ask why I didnt tell him (mainly career based stuff - social media is important to what I do).

CogitoErgoSometimes Sun 16-Jun-13 09:38:43

I think this is less about cutting contact and more about being realistic. I think you have to reassign his role in your life by revising your expectations and controlling him better.

By which I mean, stop thinking of him as 'Dad' because that's a word that is weighed down by childhood ideas of what a Dad should be, how he should behave & what obligations you have towards him. He's never going to be any of those things & you're a grown-up now so drop the hope and save yourself the disappointment. Think of him instead as (picking a name at random) 'Joe'.... some bloke you know, a friend of the family, a casual acquaintance.

So if 'Joe' gives you a birthday card, for example, you say thanks the way you would to anyone else... and you don't expect a gift. If he offers to take you out for dinner, you say you'll have to check your diary rather than feeling obliged to accept. You stop caring where 'Joe' spends his time or who he spends his money on. You stop looking at FB. If you specifically want to see 'Joe' you set something up but you don't expect him to be interested or involved in your life. That kind of thing.

I'm sure your DCs and other immediate family have busy lives that will be just fine without him.

bragmatic Sun 16-Jun-13 09:42:37

I think he elected not to behave like a father when he abdicated any form of financial responsibility for his children. I don't see any reason why you shouldn't stop acing like a daughter. If there will be repercussions on social media, delete and block.

Ledkr Sun 16-Jun-13 09:45:30

My Mum is like this op and it bloody hurts.
I have to say it hurts a lot less since i've just accepted it and backed off and lowered my expectations.
Possible the cowards way out but its made me feel better.
My mum remarried too and had two girls whom i adored but as theyve got older they are really close and bonded and have loads to do with my Mum and step dad while i'm left out of everything.
She even looks after my sisters baby while she works and I'm forking out a fortune for childcare even when I was a lone parent.
My dad is an equally crap parent who doesnt bother with me or dcs birthdays but complains if I forget his fathers day card.
I dont know why but I stil send one but make it from the dc as I can never find a suitable one from me as they all say untrue stuff.
So my advice its to expect nothing then you can t be disappointed.

Upnotdown Sun 16-Jun-13 10:01:39

Ive never really had high expectations of him but this just really upset me. It was the whole importance he placed on how he'd been calling all day to bring my card. I feel like he ruined my birthday for no teason. He could have posted the card and not mentioned my bothers motorbike. My sister and DP were both shocked. The atmosphere was stilted. He however didnt seem to notice and literally bragged about/brought the convo around to my brother at every turn. The kids were playing WiiU with my brother (my youngest is 5) and my dads going 'yeah, did you beat him, mate. Not to my my brother!!

I feel for you Ledkr - for both of the to be that way must be heart-wrenching.

I will try and grow up a bit in my head but Im a cryer - I feel things I cant control.

Ive not sent him a fathers day card/message but just noticed my step sisters wishing him a great day because hes a great dad...*sigh*. I suppose he is to them.

Upnotdown Sun 16-Jun-13 10:02:29

Sorry for the horrendous spelling. Stoopid phone.

CogitoErgoSometimes Sun 16-Jun-13 10:15:52

"He however didnt seem to notice and literally bragged about/brought the convo around to my brother at every turn."

And did you challenge this? Or did you say nothing and simmer? People like your DF have thick skins and don't notice stilted atmospheres. Be more assertive e.g. 'Shut up about the bloody motorbike ffs, it's getting boring....'

CogitoErgoSometimes Sun 16-Jun-13 10:17:41

BTW... what I say to my motorbike-mad friend when we want him to shut up about it is 'You know what surgeons call bikers don't you? .... Donors smile '

Upnotdown Sun 16-Jun-13 10:42:16

grin but if only it was just the motorbike...heres a typical conversation (and I swear this is all true- no exaggeration)

me: Ds has been learning piano!
dad: well our (db) has reached piano teacher level. Now hes learnt sax. As a matter of fact, he was playing in plymouth castle last week.
me: wow! brilliant!
dad (to dp) - what you doing for work now?
dp: still doing photography...
dad: oh (db) has got a really good camera now. Hes brilliant at it. Give you a run for your money - watch out.
me: brilliant! Well done (db)!
dad: hes getting his pilots licence in september...
me (thinking) oh just fuck off... (saying) wow! x

CogitoErgoSometimes Sun 16-Jun-13 10:48:16

So say 'oh fuck off' (or words to that effect) rather than just thinking it and getting cross. This is what I mean about dropping the 'Dad' tag... you seem hamstrung by something and I can only think it's an idea that you're not allowed to be rude to parents. If this was some randomly boring old fart down the pub pulling this one-upmanship crap, you'd say something (I'd hope) to shut them up. You wouldn't just let them jaw on, raising your blood pressure.

My best friend has a fund of acid put-downs. I can hear her response to what you're describing now.

"I'm thinking of nicknaming you 'Mimi' because that's all I'm hearing.. 'me, me, me'"

Upnotdown Sun 16-Jun-13 10:57:23

I need to grow a pair. I know. Assertiveness is not a strong point for me, especially not with df.

There are issues (he was a drunk and dv to my mum - nasty in drink to us too) but hes brushed all that under the carpet now. Along with us, it seems.

Just been talking to mg auntie (dads sis) who assures me its not all in my head and its time to speak up. The time just feels right to face this head on but if Im honest, Im a bit scared too. I dont know why.

nananaps Sun 16-Jun-13 11:07:35

Sounds like my situation shock almost identical in fact.

But i am 42 and a grown woman with 2 children of my own so it doesnt bother me.
My sisters & brother are pretty much like you, 2 of my siblings have cut my dad, his 2 kids & wife out completely.

I enjoy my dads company & im too lazy for agro so just thnk of him as "grandad" to my kids. His wife always makes sure my boys have cards & pressies so im happy with that.

Sometimes, you have just got to let stuff go.

Upnotdown Sun 16-Jun-13 11:23:35

Have you never brought it up with your dad, Nananaps?

CogitoErgoSometimes Sun 16-Jun-13 11:28:34

"Im a bit scared too. I dont know why."

If you lack confidence generally it can be very difficult to stand up to someone for the first time. Especially a nasty bully (and being spoken over is just another type of bullying). If it's any encouragement, it gets much easier with practise and rehearsing some answers is always useful.

I find starting the sentence with 'I'm not happy about that' or 'that's not what I want' or 'that's not acceptable' gets the ball rolling... Good luck

nananaps Sun 16-Jun-13 11:38:34

No i havent. I wouldnt want to get onto the wrong side of my dad, that said he has mellowed considerably in recent years and is a really good dad to his 2 little boys.

Thats what pisses my siblings off. Why couldnt he have been like that with us (dv with our mum and us, alcohol issues).

My siblings have had big confrontations with him. They are all very confrontational people....just like my dad. I'm not.

Upnotdown Sun 16-Jun-13 13:00:23

This is exactly it nananaps!

I could have written that post myself.

Confrontation is not something I relish at all. I just wish he hadnt come at all and hed posyed the card instead. I m used to that. Instead he had to come here and ruin my birthday and now fathers day because Im walking around with a face like a wet weekend and randomly crying.angry

Why do I do this! Im not generally like this at all - im pretty laid back. This has really cut me.

Ledkr Sun 16-Jun-13 14:02:44

I was chuckling at the Father's Day cards. I literally couldn't pick one because he hasn't done any of the things in the cards. Mi was half tempted to send a really sarky one but he's such a narcissist he'd probably think he deserved it.
He actually makes stuff up about being a good dad which are total lies and he also criticises other dead best dads ha ha

startlife Sun 16-Jun-13 16:18:04

I think its natural to have those feelings of rejection - you feel unimportant to him.Its bound to be hurtful however he is not likely to change so he will continue to have the ability to hurt you.You can make a decision to stop him having power over you.Recognise that he will let you down so find a way to minimise his involvement in your life.

Do consider counselling, I suspect the hurt and rejection you feel is still there from childhood.From your adult perspective you can probadly recognise that you don't need his support or approval but something is hoping that 'this time' he might be different.I suspect he knows exactly how to have maximium negative impact on you - try and stand back from the situation and it might enable you to see how selfish/insecure he is.If he is playing hurtful games, YOU can choose to stop engaging so that he no longer has the power to hurt you.

CogitoErgoSometimes Sun 16-Jun-13 18:53:08

"Confrontation is not something I relish at all. "

The day you learn to say 'piss off father, you're being a PITA' is the day you can put the Kleenex away. Whatever hold he still has over you will be broken.

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