Why different rules for different people

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Regular Member

Date Joined Aug 2006
Total Posts : 35
   Posted 8/14/2006 11:36 PM (GMT -6)   
As I was talking with my wife this morning it occured to me that I have different rules for different people. Let me see if I can explain. My father never tried to maintain a relationship with me after I decided I needed to put all my energy in to my own family. We always initiated visits, we had to start the convesations, we had to create interest. It was draining to put all the energy out there with no positive return. So I stopped trying. I have put the questioning of his reasons for his behaviour out of my mind pretty much for 21 years. But when I try to stop my negative behaviours towards my wife I always seem to pull them back from the dead file. My father abandoned me for his newer family, My wife has stood by me through all the garbage I've thrown at her. She loves me and He doesn't. Why do I treat her poorly and let my father off the hook? It is the basis for the depressive episodes I have. I start with the insults, then I feel bad, blame myself and go even deeper in the dumps. While in the dumps I realize that I have no one to "blame" but myself and start looking for evidence that my fears are true and further add fuel to the fire.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 1529
   Posted 8/15/2006 2:52 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Ifixdit,

I wonder if this is because you know you'll get a reaction from your wife *because* she loves you, whereas nothing you can do with your father ever does get a reaction. It's perhaps that by getting a reaction you have proof that she cares -- and may be also you're testing her a bit to see how *much* she cares (not consciously), how much she'll put up with being like an indicator of how much she loves you. You may be rather insecure about love after your father's treatment of you (I had something similar with my dad's mother ... ugh). I don't know -- just ideas, but they might strike a chord.

Rosie x
People are not like fish: they do not work better battered.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Oct 2005
Total Posts : 4031
   Posted 8/15/2006 6:26 AM (GMT -6)   

Hi IFIXDIT,  What Rosie said makes much sense.  The thing I am wondering is if you have a relationship with your father now?  I does seem that you hold much anger and resentment toward him for his treatment of you and that is very much understandable.

I went though a whole long convulated a thing with my real dad and for a long time held alot of resentment toward him also.  The one thing that helped me over come it was that I had to learn and except him for who he is.  I needed to know that I did not have the power to change him or his attitude.  He also deals with issues from his own upbringing so, that makes it a vicious cycle.  Once I realized that and excepted it I had to decide if I wanted him in my life or not.  That power was mine and will always be mine.


Regular Member

Date Joined Aug 2006
Total Posts : 35
   Posted 8/15/2006 11:26 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Rosie, Els,
You both make fantastic points. I will try very hard to remember that "testing" for love is not healthy. I don't have a relationship with my father and don't see it happening in the future. I will bring up the resentmant issues at my next appointment and see where it leads. As if I didn't already have a years worth of points to follow. Sincerely, thank you both for the feedback. Jer

Veteran Member

Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 3036
   Posted 8/16/2006 7:08 AM (GMT -6)   
I can relate to this thread that is for sure. It is amazing how you let certain people get away with things,and other people you would never speak to them again.
My mom is my different rules person. I think she is very depressed and has been for a long time. Due to that she lashes out and says mean things. I just usually keep my mouth shut as I keep thinking that no matter what she is still my mom.
Chronic Depression, Panic Attacks,Anxiety Attacks,Anorexia

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