My 5 year old son has witnessed more violence than he ever should have. Thankfully I was able to get away from his dad. 

My son has started to talk to me the way his dad used to. And he has started he hit me the way his dad used to. I've remained patient and I think I'm dealing with it ok. But when he starts to get physically violent and has that "mad" look in his eyes, my heart breaks. I've worked so hard to try to keep him safe. The hardest thing (I think) is feeling like I'm being abused by my 5 year old. Inside it feels as though it's his dad doing it again. I always teach him anger management skills when he's angry and help him recognize his feelings and find an outlet for it that is safe (ie; punching a pillow) and when he realizes that he's not having the effect he wanted, it stops and he goes back to happy, cute little boy....

His dad will not be seeing him until he agrees to make some changes. That's another issue. It looks like I'm headed back to court. But in the meantime......

I guess my question for men is, "What did your mothers do to teach you that hitting women is unacceptable?"

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It's not a gender issue! It's a matter of teaching one's son OR daughter that verbal or physical violence is not an option when dealing with others of either sex. I never witnessed abuse between my parents during my childhood. There was moments of anger but that was usually after my Mom's discovery of my own abuse at the hands of my step-father. Corporeal punishment comes swiftly at the hands of a career Marine unfortunately. 

You are on the right track by teaching your son to recognize his feelings and redirect his energy in a more positive direction. Your son's father seems to be a dark influence on him; I would not be comfortable leaving him in your ex's presence for any length of time. Supervised visits might prevent him from picking up any further bad habits. While not always possible, picking up and moving far far away from your past could be helpful. 

Yes I want to move. BADLY.... It is becoming a short-term goal as opposed to a long-term goal. I have nothing to stay for.

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