The problem of fathers and children seems to be eternal. Epochs are changing, but generations still find it difficult to find a common language with each other. And it is not so scary if random people came across, as when parents do not want to understand and accept the children's right to independent decisions. And if rejection entails aggression and manipulation from the closest people, we are completely lost in how to live on.
Is there a chance to improve relations with the parent with his persistent manipulations?
Here it is worth considering the situation from two perspectives:
1. The child. Why in this case this happens to you and what needs to be adjusted at the level of thoughts, words and actions (relationships) so that the process of interaction with the parent changes.
2. Parent. His aggressive behavior and manipulations are due to something: his fears and beliefs based on these fears. If you try to understand what is behind the external manifestations of his behavior (does not mean to go to his requirements!), Then for him this will already be a significant help and, most likely, will help him to meet with them himself.
Any aggressor and manipulator actually behaves this way not because he really wants to be an “evil beaver” deep down, but because he cannot behave differently in this situation because of some internal problems.
Is it worth it to follow his lead and fulfill his requirements?
Fulfilling the terrorist’s requirements in this case is a destructive strategy for both. It’s like indulging a child in the desire to eat a box of chocolates a day - it won’t become happier and it will ruin your health. It’s easier to figure out what feelings he lacks and compensate for this psychological hunger.
Is it possible to live in peace in this situation?
There is a problem, and it is rather complicated. Therefore, a quiet life without remorse and regrets is subsequently possible only if you help the parent to understand his crisis (obsessions and their real sources).
But the strategy of avoiding communication with parents is more reasonable to reject, because then, when they are gone, you can reproach yourself all your life for this. And who will help our loved ones, if not us?
And how can one help?
A direct approach with the offer of help to the parent, as they say, in the forehead, here, unfortunately, is not an assistant. The only thing you can work with is your position.
This begs the head a vivid example of changes through oneself (of course, it is too simplified) in the film “Inadequate People”. There, a teenage girl manages to improve relations with her mother through changes in herself.
At first, it all starts with our internal acceptance of what is happening, what is called “in fact.” If you understand that something that the parent says and does, he does not because of you, but because of himself, then you can get out of the position of someone who is painful and insulting. And become in the position of the one who accepts the parent with love, regardless of his words and actions. And with warmth and a smile patiently over and over again expresses an understanding of his feelings and his right to them.
Yes, I understand that it bothers you, hurts ...
No, this does not mean that I will do this and that, because it will make me unhappy as well ...
Yes, I understand that you consider me frivolous, but I have my own plan and I want to live my life and get my own experience, no matter how unusual it may be. This is the only way to my personal happiness.
And all this with a smile and trying to cause warmth in the chest in the region of the heart in order to “turn on” the feeling of love and acceptance at the moment when your body is used to creating other chemical reactions in response to what is happening.
If you live a life that the parent does not understand and does not accept (trying to convince or force you to live the way he considers right), for him, of course, the task is not easy - to accept it.
But if you manage to build a relationship with him from the perspective of you as an adult with his child (in this situation, you are more likely to show the flexibility, wisdom and unconditional acceptance that are characteristic of an adult) and give him emotional confidence that you have everything according to plan and so safely that you are even ready to support him, when he is lost in his pain and anxiety, this will greatly change his attitude.
The fact that he is so conservative and looks at the environment, trying to match him, suggests that he is terribly unsure of himself as a small child who in other people unconsciously searches for parents. After all, they will say how to correctly and approve the appropriate behavior. In his experience, this is the only safe strategy, stable and effective.
And to help him see other strategies, you first need to give him a sense of security.
Only a person is internally very strong and self-sufficient able to learn in crisis situations. A weak man will simply break.
Therefore, it is best to start in a relationship with a manipulating parent with safety and the acceptance of all his feelings and anxieties. At the same time, delimiting both for himself and for him understanding with the fulfillment of requirements.
The right to feelings and indulgence in these feelings are very different things.