Some days I

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Wiped Out, May 13, 2009.

  1. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    feel like waving the white flag:whiteflag: I've been doing really good with letting stuff roll off my back lately, felt like I was really building up my rhino skin!

    Then today...

    difficult child started of telling me multiple times how fat I am (by the way, I'm not, I'm no skinny mini either but I'm below my ww goal). I had a lot of fun thinking of mean responses but not saying them. (I didn't let it bother me)

    easy child didn't do her chore of taking out the garbage and was mad that I was making her do it because she was making us both late. She called me dumb and told me to just leave because nobody liked me anyways. (Once again the rhino skin intact and it didn't bother me.)

    After school we found out easy child didn't turn in her project today because it wasn't done even though she told us it was. She told me how ugly I am even with my new make-up (at this point I politely thanked her-it really wasn't bothering me-she also threw in an "I Hate You!")

    Then she told me she wished I would die. I left so she wouldn't see me upset but that was the kicker, my rhino skin fell away and I came downstairs and couldn't hold back the tears. husband was very kind said not to let it bother me (but he went and talked to her) I was so hurt. I left and did a bit of grocery shopping.

    Then around 8:15 tonight husband and I went to the health club, the workout helped and I know I can make it through another day but I was just so incredibly hurt. Why can't my rhino skin be intact all of the time?
  2. Fran

    Fran Former desparate mom

    You are patient beyond normal limits. Maybe they push it and push it because there is no line in the sand. Where is their boundary? Rhino skin wears out if you don't defend yourself.
  3. Andy

    Andy Active Member



    I was thinking today, I get that parents are not given instruction books with their kids but I wonder why is it then fair that the kids are given instruction books on which buttons to push? They have to be reading this somewhere - we certainly did not teach them where the buttons are and that it is o.k. to not only push but to lean on them.
  4. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    "OK, easy child - and that is relevant because...?"

    "OK, difficult child - and that is relevant because...?"

    When kids attack like this (hey, when ANYONE attacks like this!) it's an attempt (often all-too successful) to deflect us from the real problem and try to divert our attention. It's important not only for ourselves, but for our kids to learn that it's NOT right to use bullying and insults to slide out of personal responsibility.

  5. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    Ignore it as you may try, but there are just some things you cannot let them get away with saying without repercussions. That's how the rest of the world works, so why not your family?

    I tell my kids that they can THINK to themselves whatever mean nasty things about me (or anyone else, for that matter) that they want. But they DO NOT have the right to verbally abuse me. That means no name calling, no veiled threats, no disrespectful outbursts. You get sent away to cool off if those things happen, and maybe an extra chore or two tossed in as a reminder of what manners are expected. Usually all it takes is an "Excuse me?" from me and they start apologizing and backpedaling quickly.

    No amount of rhino skin can protect you forever from a constant barrage of verbal assaults. Tomorrow is a new day to zip up your rhino suit and start taking names and numbers and reminding everyone of their place in the pecking order around there.

    And I agree with Marg on the likely reason they are lashing out at you. As usual, her insight is spot on!

  6. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Fran-They do receive consequences, it just doesn't seem to matter to them or maybe I just haven't found the right consequences yet.

    Andy-Thanks-I agree they definitely know which buttons to push.

    Marg-I totally agree with you and we've tried to explain this to them-it's not sinking in yet.

    Gvcmom-I agree-and we do send them away and give extra chores-I will not be dropping easy child off at school this morning, she'll be walking from where I drop her off. Unfortunately, I can't make her walk from home as it's about 19 miles.

    Thank you everyone, I realize I wasn't clear on why easy child started her verbal garbage. She was upset because I had just given her consequences for lying to us about not doing her work. She's off tv and computers for quite awhile and was none too happy with me. Still-doesn't excuse her verbal assaults just thought I should explain more clearly.
  7. Fran

    Fran Former desparate mom

    Sharon, I told difficult child that if my spouse spoke to me like he did that I would divorce him and I frequently put him in my place. If I spoke to him the way he was speaking to me(at they time) what would he do and how would he feel?
    Reflecting back helps somewhat even if it isn't apparent.
    I grew up in an environment where it was ok when angry to vomit up any sort of negative talk. Somehow, the justification that they were angry carries almost no weight with me. I'm not living with it as an adult.
    I know different people have different levels of tolerance but if consequences don't work then you may need to try something else. Would easy child's therapist be an arbitrator to help you get through to easy child that it is not allowed to speak to you in such a belittling way.
    by the way, you are beautiful with or without the new make up. Good for you for trying new stuff.
  8. Stella

    Stella New Member

    The "I wish you would die" comment is of course going to get to you no matter how thick of a skin you have. I used to react to these comments and before I'd know it i'd be in battle with difficult child but I suppose i've learned to respond rather than react. There has to be some form of consequence for it. Completey ignorning it does nothing for your dignity and does nothing to gain respect from your difficult child. The main thing is not to react in anger. I really do understand how hurtful their comments can be though. Especially when you are going above and beyond what parents of easy child kids have to do to help their kids get through childhood!! It's such a thankless task...hang in there though and try not to let the comments get to you too much. I bet deep down they feel even a glimmer of guilt for their comments!!!
  9. SearchingForRainbows

    SearchingForRainbows Active Member


    I think you've been given great advice. I think Marg is on target. My difficult children also try to get out of their responsibilities by changing the subject, showing me their "best" difficult child behaviors, etc... I've been called a "trucking ugly witch" more times than I can count...

    The insults fly fast when I try to make my difficult children accept responsibility for either something they were supposed to do and didn't do, or for something they shouldn't have done to begin with. I'm always quick to point out to them that verbal abuse will not be tolerated under any circumstances. Like gcvmom, there are negative consequences for verbal abuse - difficult child 1 loses gaming time, difficult child 2 loses monkey puppet. I wish I could give them extra chores to do like gcvmom does, but trying to get them to follow through and do them appropriately is HE77!!! Even though you said consequences don't help, I would still give them consequences. No one is going to tolerate verbal abuse from them in the "real" world.

    I like Fran's advice about asking your kids how they would feel if they were in your position. It doesn't work at all with difficult child 1. difficult child 2 will have a "lightbulb" moment about a day after the incident. However, in difficult child 2's case, I'm not sure if he totally feels that his verbal abuse was wrong, or if he is just saying what he knows is the right thing to say. Lots of times I just think he feels badly that he lost time with his monkey puppet. Reflecting back works with my easy child. At any rate, I think Fran is right - All kids need to be made aware of how hurtful their verbal abuse is even if you feel like you're talking to a "brick wall."

    If you can't get them to stop their verbal abuse, then I think Fran's idea of asking their therapists for help is good. I can't think of anything else you can do.

    And, as far as not being able to be strong all of the time, I think it's humanly impossible!!! A long time ago, I think it was either in one of Star's or Fran's posts, this sort of thing was compared to a drop of water hitting you on the head constantly. At first it doesn't bother you, but after a while, you just can't take it any more.

    I hope today is a better day for you. Thinking of you... Hugs... WFEN

  10. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    All you can do, is what you're already doing. Keep on plugging. One day it will sink in. In the meantime - be good to yoursewlf, try to nnot own any of the stuff they dump on you. Not easy. We can survive this!

  11. DaisyFace

    DaisyFace Love me...Love me not

    ((((Hugs)))) to you....

    I have not read all of the responses, so please forgive me if I am being repetitive....

    One of the things that has always helped me is remembering the true meaning of the phrase "I hate you" (No, really!!)

    Emotionally speaking, hate is NOT the opposite of love. (And anyone who has ever been through a relationship that dissolved over time can attest). The opposite of love is APATHY--when you just are beyond caring about the other person and literally don't give enough of a d*** to even get emotional about anything that they do.

    When someone screams "I hate you"--they are really saying that they love you, but they are anrgy, frustrated and upset and they don't know how to deal with you in a way that will give them what they want. "I hate you" means that you are being a good Mom by setting limits and enforcing boundaries and your kids can't figure out a way to get around it.

    Next time you hear that phrase--mentally insert the true meaning behind it. You will find that you don't need a rhino skin at all. For example:

    You enforced the rules about doing chores--and your daughter came back with "I love you, Mom, but this makes me angry, frustrated and upset and I can't figure out a way to get you to stop making me do my chores!!!"

    Makes perfect sense, doesn't it?

    Hang in there!

  12. crazymama30

    crazymama30 Active Member

  13. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Fran-Thanks for the idea of having easy child's therapist act as a moderator. It's worth a try! Thanks for the compliment about being beautiful with or without makeup. It has been fun trying new makeup. Now if I can just get the courage to get my tatoo!

    Stella-easy child will be receiving consequences and thanks for understanding. I think easy child was feeling a bit guilty this morning.

    WFEN-Thanks, husband and I keep reflecting back to easy child and difficult child. Funny thing is how mad she gets at difficult child for doing it to me but then will do it herself. Hopefully it will start to sink in.

    Marg-Thanks-we will keep on plugging even though there are times when I want to give up.

    DaisyFace-Good idea:)


    She woke up all cheery this morning as if nothing had happened. At first she couldn't understand why I was still upset. Then she gave me a nice apology but I told her apologies aren't always enough and maybe she should think of something she could do to make up for it. She tried to be nice the whole way to school and start conversations, I answered but that was about it. I do plan on having her walk some mornings part of the way. I did this morning but it didn't really work out because her best friend happened to be at the spot I needed to drop her off at.
  14. trinityroyal

    trinityroyal Well-Known Member


    I still think dropping easy child off to walk part of the way is a good thing. Even if she gets to walk with her friend, she's still being deprived of your company and attention (not to mention the lift), which reinforces the message that you find her behaviour unacceptable.

    Also, sometimes the perspective of a peer will get through where a parent's words can't. If she and her friend talk about the situation, her friend may help her to see that she was being a menace in a way that you can't, because you're the one responsible for discipline.

    I find that "everything's okay now because I feel better" attitude as hard to take as the outbursts. I think you handled that part extremely well.

  15. AnnieO

    AnnieO Shooting from the Hip

    difficult child 1's favorite is, "That's so GAY!"

    I usually laugh, which of course annoys her no end. But I keep thinking about what that word meant when I was a child... HAPPY! CHEERFUL! Cool, she thinks it's a good thing! Whatever "it" is.

    She quit with the "It's not fair!" after a few hundred replies of... "I wonder what your basis for comparison is." Then my book club watched Labyrinth, and she got to see that part... The look on her face was priceless.

    My father had a good quote that goes hand-in-hand with detaching...
    "Don't show them you can catch bullets in your teeth... They will start shooting at you."

    No skin can deal with repeated jabs, rhino or otherwise. So while you sleep tonight, let it breathe a bit. When you zip it on again tomorrow, there won't be any holes.
  16. DazedandConfused

    DazedandConfused Active Member

    I remember when Daughter was about 14 or 15 she said, "You're fat and ugly and I'm embarrassed to be seen with you". Now, she had said some hurtful things to me, but that one not only hurt, it made me angry. We had just left a therapy session and it wasn't a good one.

    Interestingly, I had to stop by the mall to pick up something. So, I ordered her to stay in the car as to not be seen with me and the mall is Daughter's favorite place to be. For a few weeks, I wouldn't let her go anywhere with me because "I don't want to embarrass you with my fat, sloven, and hideous appearance".

    I have to say, difficult child or no, insulting your parents isn't ok. Rhino skin or not.

    She really regretted saying that to me and luckily doesn't anymore. Her favorite thing was to call me an Abuser or that I'm overprotective. I know, doesn't make sense, but she was 13 and 14 and not much of what a difficult child says at that age makes sense.

    Now, I'm mostly dealing with Son and his mouth. Arrrggg!
  17. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    I always did like Dazed and just kinda built on whatever it was they said.

    If they said I was fat, I'd say "I know. Don't let yourself get fat and ugly like me." If they said they hated me, I'd say "too bad you feel that way. I kinda liked you."

    I never got too much of it, tho. My mom got a lot of it from difficult child 1, but this was her tactic, and it worked for her, too.
  18. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Trinity-Thanks. I do totally hate that everything should be fine because I'm not mad anymore attitude. I wish her friend would talk some sense to her but this friend is truly not a good friend to easy child, she has spread rumors about her before and husband and I can't even figure out why they are friends.

    Step 2-Good quote. I like the thought of letting the rhino skin breathe a bit.

    Dazed-You handled that well:)

    Shari-I've done similar things too, it all just got to be too much yesterday.

    She was rather quiet and crabby tonight so we pretty much left her alone.
  19. jannie

    jannie trying to survive....

    I am sorry you are feeling so beaten up.....Keep that warrior skin going !! Don't let them bring you down, you are an amazing and dedicated parent. One day the kids will totally appreciate everything you do for them.

    My kids push my buttons too; we just need to not take it personally.
    Last edited: May 15, 2009
  20. flutterby

    flutterby Fly away!

    Honestly, when my kids pulled that - more difficult child than easy child - I told them to get away from me. If they hated me so much or were so embarrassed by me, then they didn't need to be around me. Let them spend some quality alone time in their rooms. Letting it roll off my back didn't work. Coming back with something along the lines of, "thank you for sharing" didn't work. They are looking for a reaction. ANY reaction. I removed them from me instead. And until they apologized to me, the only conversation was what was necessary and was very monotone. When they did apologize, there was a discussion about it - doing the reflection thing like Fran said, and letting them know that I won't be treated in that way.

    And I really don't get it very much anymore. It never worked for them. I will not tolerate it. Period.

    Last night, it was easy child and I told him to get out. He went to a friend's and I told him not to come home last night. But, he's older.