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Daughter and wife in physical fight - what to do?

(186 Posts)
northernDad38 Thu 15-Aug-13 22:12:06

My 13 yr old daughter is really pushing boundaries at the moment, all the usual smirking and cheeky answers etc. But today which was meant to be a family day began with her refusing to put her shoes on. It sounds silly but it just got more and more antagonistic.

I managed to make peace with her and she helped me in the garden for a an hour or so.

But before we went out an argument about clothes with her mother got so out of hand I had to physically step in and pull them apart as her mum was actually trying to throttle her.

They both said appalling things which neither really mean and they spent the rest of the afternoon apart, and things have calmed down now but U'm just so shaken and upset by what happened I just don't want anything like this to happen again...

BeckAndCall Mon 02-Sep-13 11:15:43

wuldric I think you need to read the whole thread and see the journey that northern dad has already been on to get to here. He's doing a great job in getting help and support where it's needed and really doesn't need reminding about his responsibilities right now.

Wuldric Mon 02-Sep-13 00:27:50

I think the OP is married to Charles Saatchi ... Only this time, CS is taking it out on the kids!

Seriously though, I think you either need to remove your daughter to a place of safety or your DW to a place where she is not going to threaten your children. Your first obligation should be to your DCs who are not able to protect themselves. You seem to be conflicted with that. Do you have any doubt that your first obligation is to protect them?

Utterly ridiculous behaviour. And yes, I do have teenagers. And yes, they are PITAs.

SunshineBossaNova Mon 02-Sep-13 00:21:53

Best of luck northerndad, take care.

cory Sun 01-Sep-13 23:07:52

Just make sure she knows that if it ever happens again you will call the police.

cory Sun 01-Sep-13 23:06:51

Best of luck for the exams, northerndad, and well done for hanging in there.

northernDad38 Sun 01-Sep-13 17:36:30


Thanks. I am feeling less stressed, and life seems to be no more or less worse than it is for most people.

Fingers crossed life will stay on an even keel as i have work related exams on the horizon.

SunshineBossaNova Sun 01-Sep-13 12:51:41

Hope you're ok Northern x

northernDad38 Sun 01-Sep-13 10:06:18

My DW has been to the GP and for the moment she's been prescribed a higher dose of her current medication (Sertraline) and will be fitted with a Mirena Coil. She will also be going to some counselling.

i also visited my GP and was prescribed some anti-anxiety medication.

It's early days but things seem better.

AdoraBell Fri 23-Aug-13 23:10:57

Very well done northernDad and as for you 'forcing' her to see the GP, can you see the way she's distorting it? You are not forcing her, you have simply made the appointment that she wouldn't make. Do, please, talk to your parents and the helpline linked above.

Take care and keep the safety of your DDs in mind to keep you on track.

SunshineBossaNova Fri 23-Aug-13 22:52:26

Well done Northern. Look after yourself.

cupoftchai Fri 23-Aug-13 21:51:08 this was already recommended upthread. they have a helpline.

also these
helpline, more advice.

call them!

cupoftchai Fri 23-Aug-13 21:50:48 this was already recommended upthread. they have a helpline.

also these
helpline, more advice.

call them!

Maryz Fri 23-Aug-13 21:47:38

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

cupoftchai Fri 23-Aug-13 21:46:15

HI NorthernDad
This is a really stressful situation for you and I do empathise. I can hear you saying that you want to change the situation. However making changes is going to be very difficult - look at anyone in an abusive situation, their self esteem and confidence gets chipped away at, they are frightened, then they have to stand up to the abuser and make massive changes to their life: of course that is difficult!
But your daughters are the vulnerable ones here and you are the person in the right place to help them. You can do it!
Making doctors appointments is unlikely to be enough on its own. You need to nurture a sense of urgency in yourself. Think about the harm that has been done already to your girls, think about the ongoing effects of living with fear - it's not good.
What can you do to make them safe? How will you know when they are safe? and when you are all safe? - you deserve, too, not to be physically or emotionally harmed.

social work and police. you can ring children and families social work and talk through your situation. It would be braver to do this, giving your name, and letting them come to meet you. However if you need to talk to them first anonymously then that is better than nothing.

THey will ask why you didn't act already. don't leave it any longer. Do prepare yourself to be asked about the way you respond to stress and violence, and whether you have ever been violent yourself.

Put yourself in touch with a resource helping men who have been subject to domestic abuse - there are very few, but I know of one in wales which takes phone calls from all over. you can google it.

good luck.

northernDad38 Fri 23-Aug-13 21:21:39

I've booked Doctors appointments for DW and myself. DW does not want to go and refers to me forcing her into going. The stress Levels are already rising this weekend I'm hoping to talk everything through with my parents too. The worry is really getting to me, I've not been sleeping well and my work is starting to suffer.

Minifingers Thu 22-Aug-13 01:00:27

Sorry for you all OP. sad

My 14 year old dd has attacked me physically and verbally, wrecked the house, abused her younger siblings and I have on about three occasions become physical with her, in response to her (physically) pushing me up against a wall and screaming in my face or shoving and body blocking me. It's hideous. Would point out, my dd is as big and is stronger than me.

I second all the recommendations for your wife to get help immediately. She can't allow herself to EVER be physical with your dd again. It was a promise I made to myself after the last time things got physical between myself and my child - and I have adhered to it despite severe provocation from my dd. I hope your wife can do the same.

AdoraBell Wed 21-Aug-13 02:48:16

NorthernDad how are you doing tonight?

Libertine73 Tue 20-Aug-13 12:48:02

Northern Time to get real. You do know if she had scratched the children like that SS would be involved don't you?

You have to realise something terrible could happen here, it really could.

she sees red, and you have 2 children in her care, please do something!!

GoodbyeRubyTuesday Tue 20-Aug-13 12:41:08

NorthernDad I appreciate this must be incredibly hard for you, but you haven't actually mentioned taking any action apart from talking to your wife and daughter. The longer you leave this the harder it will be, and the longer your wife will have had to minimise it in her mind and make up excuses. You need to do something. You and your children are at serious risk from physical abuse. Did you seek medical attention for your daughter when your wife cut her head? It seems like you've been, possibly unintentionally, helping your wife cover up the abuse. If the situation was reversed I expect all the posters would be telling your wife to kick you out, regardless of any mental problems. Please, please take action and deal with this properly. It's all very well going to the GP and getting medical help for your wife, but treatment will take time to work, if it works at all. In the meantime, your children are at risk sad

OrmirianResurgam Tue 20-Aug-13 11:17:54

I have been aggressive and uncontrollably angry before - never actually hit anyone but shouted and kicked things in frustration. I once scared my eldest child when I got into a towering rage with him. I am utterly ashamed but it happened. It happened because I had undiagnosed PND after the birth of my second child. It has happened to a lesser extent when I try to come off my meds. I suspect your wife needs to have her med looked at - they may not be working for her.

I have learned my lesson. I will never allow myself to get to the point ever again. I don't think your wife is taking her condition seriously.

Maryz Tue 20-Aug-13 10:39:49

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

SunshineBossaNova Tue 20-Aug-13 10:32:35

Northern, I am so sorry you and your DC are in this situation.

Please think about involving authorities (social services, police). You and your DC should not be scared to live in your own home.

There is a very useful book by Lundy Bancroft called 'Why does he do that?' - it's about abusive men but you may find it enlightening.

I've been with an abusive man (mainly EA) and it is horrifying. Luckily for me I only had to get myself sorted.

Best of luck OP.

cory Tue 20-Aug-13 10:17:54

The other posters are absolutely right: you cannot afford to wait and see. You have got to do something NOW.

Your dd is not safe against future attacks from your dw- another head injury could easily kill her. Anyone who has banged their head like you describe should have seen a doctor.

You will not be able to persuade SS that your first priority is to keep the children safe if you do not act now.

And finally if you teach your dd that violent attacks are ok as long as you say sorry and hug afterwards you are setting her up for a lifetime of potential abuse from a future partner.

It must be absolutely horrible for you, but you are her father; if you cannot keep her safe and teach her ways to stay safe, then nobody else can. Hard as it is, you must force yourself to do this.

You are not going back on anything you have agreed with your wife or betraying her in any way: she is the one who is going back on her promise to see the doctor.

Phoning children's services sounds like good advice.

mignonette Tue 20-Aug-13 09:59:02

This puts a different spin on things doesn't it OP?

You are now complicit in the abuse of your daughter unless you do something.

You need to contact your GP and ask him/her to work with you and SS to deal with this situation.


Madamecastafiore Tue 20-Aug-13 05:02:22

You tell your wife to get help or you will start proceedings to leave her.

You tell her that next time something like this happens and she attacks you or dd that you will call the police and have her charged.

You go up to your child and tell her that you will protect her from her mothers violence as she has the right to be safe and protected in her own home.

I am trying not to get cross here but you need to take some responsibility for the situation if your wife won't. It's sad but it seems a mother attacking a child is more acceptable than a stranger as you can bet that if this was some random joe who assaulted her in the street you would afford her the level of respect and protection she deserves and report it to the police.

You are bringing up your child to think it acceptable to be abused by others, sadly those who are supposed to love, cherish and protect her.

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