When Your Father Is A Bully
Posted by Dr. Vollmer on August 13, 2015
What happens when your father is a bully? Does this mean that you will be bullied on the playground? Or, does this mean you live a life fearful of humiliation? Or, does this mean that fear dominates your existence such that your imagination is killed? These are the questions I ask myself as I think about Sue, thirty-three who is timid and fragmented in her thinking. Her problem solving skills are limited. She constantly tells me that she has few choices in her life, but looking from the outside it seems she has more opportunities than most people will ever have. The father-bully is a particular kind of child abuse which, on the one hand is subtle, in that there is no evidence to anyone, other than her mother, that this abuse is taking place. On the other hand, the father-bully makes it clear that Sue has no mind of her own, and she must do what father-bully demands of her. As a result, Sue, not only feels inhibited, she has no idea what she feels inhibited from doing, because she has never nurtured her mind to see what ideas pop in. It is sad, but there is hope that Sue can come to understand this obstacle to her growth and then get past it.