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Resolving the Conflict

The legal matters have finished, now the ongoing shared parenting communication and conflict resolving needs to develop for the sake of the children. Can you move forward?

I think that internal meter you talk about can cause much conflict in children and as much exposure as possible to stability will assist them finding their way.

If one or the other parent is frugal with conceptional truth and honesty as well as social orientation it can leave children with mis conceived ideas of what family is about, this in itself can work to alienate the parent from the child and a false consideration of who to be loyal to, an attachment to the parent who is destroying the childs relationship with the other parent.

Even if games are not played on the part of the concerned parent and even if this parent does not dis the childs other parent there is still a tendency for the child to accept bad behaviour through reward of attention and more readily reject the other parent through guilt or fear, simply put " self preservation ".

How do you best compensate for this?

Especially if you have recognised and compensated negative traits and improved your parenting style.

What are the possible solutions?
D4E said
I think that internal meter you talk about can cause much conflict in children and as much exposure as possible to stability will assist them finding their way.
You are correct, children naturally go through internal conflict as part of their journey from child to adult and what particular developmental stage they are 'wrestling with". Stabilty is desireable and what many families aim to achieve however for many children even in families together often stability is not really offered. The challenge is how to give this stabilty.
D4E said
If one or the other parent is frugal with conceptional truth and honesty as well as social orientation it can leave children with mis conceived ideas of what family is about, this in itself can work to alienate the parent from the child and a false consideration of who to be loyal to, an attachment to the parent who is destroying the childs relationship with the other parent.
In any family where one or both parents or carers are operating from some form of disfunction the above can happen. Often the process of alienation form one parent and sometimes both parents in older children has started long before the separation. A parent can start the process of subtle and not so subtle put down, emotional black mail and many more patterns well before the parents have decide to go their separte ways. These children have not only the stress of the conflict surrounding the separation but already have a history of game playing and disfunction which sometimes has started from birth!
D4E said
Even if games are not played on the part of the concerned parent and even if this parent does not dis the childs other parent there is still a tendency for the child to accept bad behaviour through reward of attention and more readily reject the other parent through guilt or fear, simply put "self-preservation".
Very true!
D4E said
How do you best compensate for this?

Especially if you have recognised and compensated negative traits and improved your parenting style.

What are the possible solutions?
This is not an easy answer in  a few lines. You state you have improved your parenting style - this  one positive approach to assist your relationship with the child or children. You may be called on to even develop a deeper understanding of the challenges of parenting; so any course or book that helps you understand what is going on for the child will also help you devise strategies to deal with problems as they arise.

We often say we love our children or others in our life- this is really true - however what gets in the way sometimes is our emotions when we react to what another person may be doing that is affecting the relationship say with a child. A child needs the stabilty to come from the stable parent; who is always clam, firm, nurtures and protects. When we can't do this we are still on our own personal journey of learning and growth through this experience. (Even when we say we are upset because of the child). It is hard sometimes in these higly emotional situations hard to impossible to observe ourselves in a self growth experience; but this is what is happening. When we truely love someone they will start to pick this up; even if they go through stages of adjustment through withdrawing, rebelling, fighting against or judging.

So possible steps towards solutions.

1. Recognise you are on a journey and so is the child and it is not a desirable journey.

2. Read as much as you can to understand child development or do courses that are insightful on what is happening.

3. Deal with your own emotions away from the child and the x-partner so you can really radiate love to your child.

4. Accept things are not what you want and look to small steps you can change.

5. Make the environment the child comes into as pleasant and home like as possible; e.g. make sure their room is a safe haven and attractive with all they need in your home. They will prefer to be in their old home otherwise all or most of the time.

6. Don't engage in trying to explain anything about the behaviour of the other parent; they need to feel loyal often to the primary care giver and your challenging this (even if you are justifed) can send them more into alienation. As they become teenagers thay may start to talk to you about the situation; but they need to initiate it and still you need to support their 'love' for the 'needy' or disfunctional parent.

7. Focus on having fun with your child; children basically want to play; (age of child?) or as teenagers be with their friends.

As you can see I have not got into the behaviour of the other parent; you cannot do anything about this once all the court proceedings are over. You can however really improve and change your experiences with the child and offer the stabilty you have talked about. If you wanted you could study and find out all about the behaviour of the dysfunctional parent; this can help understand what is going on but is not really necessary if you focus on the above. It has taken me over 20 years of study and personal relationships to be able to recognise most behaviour patterns and how to defuse them! Hope htis is of a little help.
It helps many not just myself.

Recognising that the other parent is different and that they will deal with things as they choose was one of the first hurdles that I had to overcome.

My daughters mother did not behave this way when she was in a family unit with myself but rather adjusted back to her " fail safe zone " from before she met me.
This caused conflict of parenting because suddenly the gap between parenting styles was immense.

I do not think this unusual and suggest it is systematic for a person who adopts aspects of alienation, they still refer to others that they believe the kids time with dad is important but work towards sabotaging this time.

As you suggest acceptance of this or other similar situations is imperative to adjusting how you deal with your childs enviroment when they are with you. Although I agree an introduction by ones self of factors of alienation is a very negative situation and can effectively drive the child towards the other parent, it's important that mistakes are made to improve habits, in other words be accepting of the fact that you are allowed to make mistakes and improve from them.

I agree totally with supporting the love for their other parent but I think sometimes it's important to the child that they realise what makes people different so to this I would ask. Is there an advantage to working through the childs problems with them to encourage acceptance of behaviour as simply differences in people or is it better to ignore their problem because it involves negative behavior by the opposing parent.

At this stage I should explain I have 50/50 time and care, this at times can amplify problems especially when schools are now explaining certain aspect of negative social behaviour that can be seen in one enviroment but not the other.   
D4E.

You have stated you have 50/50 time and care; so you are very significant in the development of your children.

I don't believe we ignore behaviours; it is how we deal with them so our children don't feel threatened in their loyalty to the other parent. Don't put the child in the position where they have to choose a parent to be loyal to! Children as they get older will start working out some patterns for themselves. We can still direct their learning through discussion and even introductions to some suitable books that help a child form their own opinions.

Basically we are the guide, who walks beside to  teach our children values and attitudes and behaviours without directing them as a criticism or judgement at the other parent.

Values such as RESPECT - care and consideration for others can lead to discussion without launching an attack on our ex partner. Most negative behaviours when we look closely at them will lead us to consider the value, attitude or behaviour we would like in its place. Focus on these values with your children and let them make their own mind up.

If we take 'telling lies"; in society to-day many adults have difficulty with this; but if we think it is important we can teach our children why it is important to tell the truth.

Schools are increasingly teaching topics that suport constructive behaviour; so they will reinforce what you are teaching. Start to consider what you actively want to teach your children when they are with you and how you can do this for them to be interested. Even a discussion on the values displayed in a movie is a safe way to bring some of the topics up that you may want them to be aware of.
Not one to shy away from the commitment neccessary in trying to be a good parent does not prepare you for the subtle strategies needed to best introduce good behavioral habits.

By this I do not mean controlling the child's behaviour and how they perceive life but rather cover alternate behaviour for them to make their own decisions.

We had some friends of my daughter over who's mum has just got a new boyfriend, the children were confused about their roles and referred to the man as " their new dad " and his children as new siblings.

When the 5 year old suggested that she did not want to lose her old dad I automatically explained that she wouldn't as no one could take his place.

After they left my daughter questioned if I thought she was lucky seeing her mum and dad. With out hesitation I expressed I thought she was very lucky.

So many things we fight against to establish a relationship with our children and we take so much into consideration yet the other parent simply do as they please.

I can understand why many would slip back into negative enforcement. It really is a life time commitment that is being discussed on a very different level than co-parenting.

Books can explain a lot but nothing will replace support, I hope you expand and grow with the site Sage all my best.
Thank you D4E for your insights and kind words and I hope that I am able to offer support that is constructive when needed.

I agree that a co-parenting situation, especially when dealing with destructive behaviour patterns on the part of one parent, can take the other parent to a depth of personal understanding and challenge that they may not expect when they initially separate from a partner.

As an 'older' person I know that my journey has become easier from learning through the crises of my life! Unfortunately some people get "stuck" and do not learn or stay constructive or positive!
My guy and his ex wife are in a period of conflict right now, and it is not the first time they've fought, and now I finally think I see what is going on here. What I have realised is that about 90% of their confict is not about the child at all - it is their unresolved emotional issues from their marriage. The child and parenting responsibilities are just a handy excuse to have a dig at each other - admittedly mainly from her to him - but he capitulates and in my eyes is equally responsible for the situation.

My guy has moved on quite well from the end of the marriage - we now live together, are very happy, the child and I get along really well and they like me, the child sees how happy their dad is, and so on. He has the chlid every 2nd weekend. He pays more than the assessed child support on time every time - a four figure sum. He can afford the sum but has an unpredictable job - flexibility is required from both sides when it comes to contact with the child and so far it has happened, but it is becoming more difficult.

Their issues are usually about contact - she refuses to allow me to spend time with the child unless the father is around. I live with the father, and have known the kids for well over a year, and sometimes the father's job is such that he will ask me to collect the child for the weekend - maybe one in every 10 times. I have no issue with this, and neither does the child, who is early teens in age. The mother refuses to allow this, and now refuses to speak to the father, insisting only on email contact.

This is the source of the current battle between them. I think my guy needs to learn how to deal with his ex more effectively. So far he has sought her approval and acceptance, and it is never going to happen. He has become distracted from doing the right thing for the child, by wondering why she is being so difficult all the time.

I accept that she is jealous - her elder children have said this enough times - but I am not interested in having a competition with her. I just want some peace, and I hate seeing this child missing out and being caught in the middle. There are so many fun and beneficial things he can do with me and my folks, but he is not allowed, yet he wants to. I can understand why my guy avoids dealing with her and it is easier for him to give in because in the past their discussions always ended in conflict.

I suggested he look into independent counselling through the family court or similar - how can he find out more about this?
Relationships Australia or any psychologist is the way to go.

You often find people that have been through these difficult relationships contributed to them in being passive agressive in their own behaviour.

Capitulating when they should have stood their ground or been more direct and assertive in their communication.

This is Sage's area of expertise and I'm looking forward to her answer. Sage is very busy and I thought I'd pop my comments in.

Personally, I'm thinking of buying my partner some time with a lifecoach to improve his communication skills.

Junior Executive of SRL-Resources

Executive Member of SRL-Resources, the Family Law People on this site (Look for the Avatars). Be mindful what you post in public areas. 
Prachay said
My guy and his ex wife are in a period of conflict right now, and it is not the first time they've fought, and now I finally think I see what is going on here. What I have realised is that about 90% of their confict is not about the child at all - it is their unresolved emotional issues from their marriage. The child and parenting responsibilities are just a handy excuse to have a dig at each other - admittedly mainly from her to him -but he capitulates and in my eyes is equally responsible for the situation.

My guy has moved on quite well from the end of the marriage - we now live together, are very happy, the child and I get along really well and they like me, the childsees how happy their dad is, and so on. He has the chlid every 2nd weekend. He pays more than the assessed child support on time every time - a four figure sum. He can afford the sum but has an unpredictable job - flexibility is required from both sides when it comes to contact with the child and so far it has happened, but it is becoming more difficult.

Their issues are usually about contact - she refuses to allow me to spend time with the child unless the father is around. I live with the father, and have known the kids for well over a year, and sometimes the father's job is such that he will ask me to collect the child for the weekend - maybe one in every 10 times. I have no issue with this, and neither does the child, who is early teens in age. The mother refuses to allow this, and now refuses to speak to the father, insisting only on email contact.

This is the source of the current battle between them. I think my guy needs to learn how to deal with his ex more effectively. So far he has sought her approval and acceptance, and it is never going to happen. He has become distracted from doing the right thing for the child, by wondering why she is being so difficult all the time.

I accept that she is jealous - her elder children have said this enough times - but I am not interested in having a competition with her. I just want some peace, and I hate seeing this child missing out and being caught in the middle. There are so many fun and beneficial things he can do with me and my folks, but he is not allowed, yet he wants to. I can understand why my guy avoids dealing with her and it is easier for him to give in because in the past their discussions always ended in conflict.

I suggested he look into independent counselling through the family court or similar - how can he find out more about this?
  Hi Prachay

As a man who has evolved through various stages, white knight, hero, sex god,:lol:provider, father, perfect, not so perfect and a number of other roles and stages I feel what your guy needs is some straight talking. Counselors are fairly limited in my experience, he has to find this out himself and in a healthy way. He needs to practice NOW with you probably.

Women (as we see from this site) will routinely use power of AVOs, courts, CSA , tantrums, money, withholding children , etc.
The reason they do this is to cause damage and make the man angry.
The reason they do that is to 'bait' the man
They often use controlling and 'baiting' techniques - especially when they cannot physically hit the man.

These games begin very early with females - Notice any playground or primary school and notice how girls hone their skills in social manipulation, exclusion and exercising control and power while the boys are kicking the footy or playing cricket.

Its these coversations he needs to see, have, accept etc - or a version of it.
Stepping out of percieved roles and calling behaviouir for what it is in others AND ONES SELF is a VERY POWERFUL tool and can open up HEALTHIER and HAPPIER releationships. We all need to do this.

I'm a man with opinions, ideas, experiences, skills and faults and I am PROUD OF WHO I AM and I don't need or want other people's permission to be me.

(Moderator Note)
Parts of this post have been deleted by a Site Moderator.

 Maybe I am not explaining myself well enough
Jon Pearson said
Prachay said
My guy and his ex wife are in a period of conflict right now, and it is not the first time they've fought, and now I finally think I see what is going on here. What I have realised is that about 90% of their confict is not about the child at all - it is their unresolved emotional issues from their marriage. The child and parenting responsibilities are just a handy excuse to have a dig at each other - admittedly mainly from her to him -but he capitulates and in my eyes is equally responsible for the situation.

My guy has moved on quite well from the end of the marriage - we now live together, are very happy, the child and I get along really well and they like me, the childsees how happy their dad is, and so on. He has the chlid every 2nd weekend. He pays more than the assessed child support on time every time - a four figure sum. He can afford the sum but has an unpredictable job - flexibility is required from both sides when it comes to contact with the child and so far it has happened, but it is becoming more difficult.

Their issues are usually about contact - she refuses to allow me to spend time with the child unless the father is around. I live with the father, and have known the kids for well over a year, and sometimes the father's job is such that he will ask me to collect the child for the weekend - maybe one in every 10 times. I have no issue with this, and neither does the child, who is early teens in age. The mother refuses to allow this, and now refuses to speak to the father, insisting only on email contact.

This is the source of the current battle between them. I think my guy needs to learn how to deal with his ex more effectively. So far he has sought her approval and acceptance, and it is never going to happen. He has become distracted from doing the right thing for the child, by wondering why she is being so difficult all the time.

I accept that she is jealous - her elder children have said this enough times - but I am not interested in having a competition with her. I just want some peace, and I hate seeing this child missing out and being caught in the middle. There are so many fun and beneficial things he can do with me and my folks, but he is not allowed, yet he wants to. I can understand why my guy avoids dealing with her and it is easier for him to give in because in the past their discussions always ended in conflict.

I suggested he look into independent counselling through the family court or similar - how can he find out more about this?
  Hi Prachay

As a man who has evolved through various stages, white knight, hero, sex god,:lol:provider, father, perfect, not so perfect and a number of other roles and stages I feel what your guy needs is some straight talking. Counselors are fairly limited in my experience, he has to find this out himself and in a healthy way. He needs to practice NOW with you probably.

Women (as we see from this site) will routinely use power of AVOs, courts, CSA , tantrums, money, withholding children , etc.
The reason they do this is to cause damage and make the man angry.
The reason they do that is to 'bait' the man
They often use controlling and 'baiting' techniques - especially when they cannot physically hit the man.

These games begin very early with females - Notice any playground or primary school and notice how girls hone their skills in social manipulation, exclusion and exercising control and power while the boys are kicking the footy or playing cricket.

Its these coversations he needs to see, have, accept etc - or a version of it.
Stepping out of percieved roles and calling behaviouir for what it is in others AND ONES SELF is a VERY POWERFUL tool and can open up HEALTHIER and HAPPIER releationships. We all need to do this.

I'm a man with opinions, ideas, experiences, skills and faults and I am PROUD OF WHO I AM and I don't need or want other people's permission to be me.

(Moderator Note)
Parts of this post have been deleted by a Site Moderator.

 

John
I do not think your post was very helpful! It is more of an angry rant by a male who clearly suffered going through the system. Only a small majority of women use the tactics you describe, however, the nature of the site means that you will get to hear most of that small majority. People tend NOT to need help when both sides are being amicable. People come here because they are in conflict and need help.
Do not judge what women or men do by your own bad experience, or by the postings on this site.


Monti

Executive Member of SRL-Resources, the Family Law People on the site (Look for the Avatars).   Be mindful what you post in the public areas. 
Prachay said
My guy and his ex wife are in a period of conflict right now, and it is not the first time they've fought, and now I finally think I see what is going on here. What I have realised is that about 90% of their confict is not about the child at all - it is their unresolved emotional issues from their marriage. The child and parenting responsibilities are just a handy excuse to have a dig at each other - admittedly mainly from her to him - but he capitulates and in my eyes is equally responsible for the situation.

My guy has moved on quite well from the end of the marriage - we now live together, are very happy, the child and I get along really well and they like me, the child sees how happy their dad is, and so on. He has the chlid every 2nd weekend. He pays more than the assessed child support on time every time - a four figure sum. He can afford the sum but has an unpredictable job - flexibility is required from both sides when it comes to contact with the child and so far it has happened, but it is becoming more difficult.

Their issues are usually about contact - she refuses to allow me to spend time with the child unless the father is around. I live with the father, and have known the kids for well over a year, and sometimes the father's job is such that he will ask me to collect the child for the weekend - maybe one in every 10 times. I have no issue with this, and neither does the child, who is early teens in age. The mother refuses to allow this, and now refuses to speak to the father, insisting only on email contact.

This is the source of the current battle between them. I think my guy needs to learn how to deal with his ex more effectively. So far he has sought her approval and acceptance, and it is never going to happen. He has become distracted from doing the right thing for the child, by wondering why she is being so difficult all the time.

I accept that she is jealous - her elder children have said this enough times - but I am not interested in having a competition with her. I just want some peace, and I hate seeing this child missing out and being caught in the middle. There are so many fun and beneficial things he can do with me and my folks, but he is not allowed, yet he wants to. I can understand why my guy avoids dealing with her and it is easier for him to give in because in the past their discussions always ended in conflict.

I suggested he look into independent counselling through the family court or similar - how can he find out more about this?


I agreee with your realisation that one main reason many ex-partners continue to have conflict is not really about the child but is still the need to resolve their emotional issues. Depending on the unresolved issues of each person or one person; this will determone behaviour. The four main games are played; power struggles, the need for continual recognition or attention, retaliation or revenge or self righteous pedantic type of behaviour. Unresolved issues can lead to one or more of these being used by a hurting and often jealous ex-partner. You can not change anyone else's behaviour; you can however change your own behaviour and resolve your own unresoved issues and this means the person can't play the same games with you. When you and your partner are not emotionally reacting you know that you have worked through your emotional issues and you will be able to make decisions and take actions that are clear and resolve the problem. It does not mean that the other person will not continue to be 'difficult'; it simply means you will handle these situations in a more constructive manner.

The contact has been become your issue. A parent; male or female often find that all their own jealousy issues raise their ugly head when a new partner has a fun and enjoyable relationship with the child of the new partner in a relationship. Obviously this comes from low self esteem and fear at a deep level. It also comes from a perception by many that they 'own' their children rather then they are responsible as a parent to do the best they can to give the child a loving guiding relationship and allow them to develop and make their own decisions. So the question becomes how does your partner negotiate with his ex-partner for contact to work to the advantage of the child and also to have his rights met. Your role as the new partner would have escalated the problems; a year seems a long time for an ex-partner to work through their emotional issues, however for some people it takes years and others unfortunately will never choose to move on and will destroy their own life and if you are not careful harm the 'weapon' the child. Your partner would gain by working with a professional to improve his skills to negotiate a reasonable solution; if he is in conflict and is emotional he needs to deal with his issues. Sometimes; even if you have a great relationship with the child you have to be careful how you conduct your relationship with the child; not because you have done anything wrong; but because the child will suffer if your relationship is seen to be a threat to the relationship of the mother and the child. It is not fair but you need to navigate this challenge carefully so the child can gain through the positive modelling of the new relationship his father now has. Smart kids walk this fine line all the time; the difficulty is that the child sometimes is forced to support  the 'weaker' parent out of duty, loyalty, natural love of the parent no matter what they are doing. their are some good books out there on being the step parent; start to do some reading. Also the child can access the following website for their own needs
ERROR: A link was posted here (url) but it appears to be a broken link.
www.chatfirst.com.au/kids/
Thanks Sage. What you say makes perfect sense. Certainly the vast majority of the emotion is coming from the mother, and my guy accepts that her emotions are not his issue to solve, but since it does affect their interractions, he has to deal with it, and he is concerned that his child is being bullied by the mother (the child's fear when he reveals things his mother has said and done). My guy says he has emotionally detatched, but I see that he will still use emotional means to negotiate with her. He says he talks to her in a calm and quiet manner, and I have heard this when he is on the phone to her. He has mentioned things such as the child might want to come and live with us, he can reduce his payments to her (he currently pays above the assessment). I do not think this is the right way to go in sorting out things for the child - he is no better than her if he brings these things up in discussion over the current issue.

They have been separated for well over 2 years now, and yes, it is more than enough time for her to get over things and start to move on. And it is her choice to remain where she is, emotionally, but there is a strong element of blame towards him and a bit of 'you owe me' in her thinking.
Prachay said
Thanks Sage. What you say makes perfect sense. Certainly the vast majority of the emotion is coming from the mother, and my guy accepts that her emotions are not his issue to solve, but since it does affect their interractions, he has to deal with it, and he is concerned that his child is being bullied by the mother (the child's fear when he reveals things his mother has said and done). My guy says he has emotionally detatched, but I see that he will still use emotional means to negotiate with her. He says he talks to her in a calm and quiet manner, and I have heard this when he is on the phone to her. He has mentioned things such as the child might want to come and live with us, he can reduce his payments to her (he currently pays above the assessment). I do not think this is the right way to go in sorting out things for the child - he is no better than her if he brings these things up in discussion over the current issue.

They have been separated for well over 2 years now, and yes, it is more than enough time for her to get over things and start to move on. And it is her choice to remain where she is, emotionally, but there is a strong element of blame towards him and a bit of 'you owe me' in her thinking.
 It is good to see you have insight to the emotional inter-plays of both parties. When some one is very calm and at the same time are 'threatening' to have the child come to live with them; they are still playing emotional games, it is simply not obvious to many that this what is happening. Depending on the personality style and the positive or negative qualities being engaged; this will determine what the 'game' looks like. The quietest, most 'controlled' person can have intense emotions directing their behaviour; they simply have more ability to control the emotions. Relationships bring up all the unresolved emotional issues we need to work through in our lives. Children intensify the emotional issues because they are emotionally and spiritually connnected to the parents. When I can own that my own emotions are really showing me what is unresolved I can choose to work on these issues. I then hold the power in my own life no matter what anyone else does. I know I have the power to make decisons to move forward and release what no longer serves me emotionally. Really at a very deep level it is the conflict between my own ego and my own spirit. The ego at its core is really about fear and the spirit is about love. Every conflict we are in gives us an opportunity to move closer to spirit and out of the fear of ego. When we have worked through issues often after many years we are then able to move to compassion; compassion comes from love not fear. You are in early days; even withour children involved a breakup of a relationship that has been in place for a number of years can easily take a minimum of three years for people to move on. Add children to the relationship and it can take many more years. When we enter a relationship with someone who is still processing a  relationship; and many people do this; we become part of the process and we either handle this in a constructive manner or a destructive manner. Your insights indicate you are leaning towards a constructuve involvement; you will learn much from this relationship that at present you will still be unaware of. To me this is your journey and it also can be a very worthwhile and positive learning experience depending on how you handle it. Don't end up doing you partners work for him; engage him to do his own process - I think you are doing this from what you have said. Be careful you do not expect someone to move on in two years; many people are not able to this for many different and legitimate reasons - it certainly helps if they work on their own emotional issues with  some one they trust. I also believe many counsellors have skills to help; but if they  have not worked through their own emotional issues they can not help in very complex emotional inter-plays. If you look for professional help only stay with someone because 'you' (or partner) is actually moving forward and releasing emotionally.
 

John
I do not think your post was very helpful! It is more of an angry rant by a male who clearly suffered going through the system. Only a small majority of women use the tactics you describe, however, the nature of the site means that you will get to hear most of that small majority. People tend NOT to need help when both sides are being amicable. People come here because they are in conflict and need help.
Do not judge what women or men do by your own bad experience, or by the postings on this site.


Monti
 
Prachay - Sage provides good advice

The main thing is men are allowed to get angry, frustrated, express dismay, call people for their actions, etc.
Its very important to say things like 'What she has done to me is wrong - what she is doing to our child is wrong'
'i'm not perfect or nor is she but thats an action i think is bad'

This at least recognises (and validates) one's on view on the matter.

Then the questions is what to do about it.(and thats a whole series of things)

But on the inner level -
When people are driven by fear, political correctness, confusion etc thatn they can sometimes not control their actions.
This is the a problem.

your man has to build his strength and one of the most difficult things is to stand up to women, the politically correct, judges and so on.
It takes real strength of character - particularly given the repression of people for decades.

Why I quoted Monte was to highlight some of the problems he will face. Those in power will judge, reach all sorts of conclusions, make personal attacks or accusations, get upset , misunderstand and so on - its par for the course. The main thing is for him to know what he thinks, wants and what he can do and can't do to make things better.

thanks to monte for illustrating the point so well.:)

 Maybe I am not explaining myself well enough
Jon, there is a difference between:

being assertive and being agressive,
standing ones ground and pushing your view down another's throat.

For the passive person it can often be hard to get the balance right. Firm but fair should be your man's mantra all the way.

A lesson from personal experience Parchay is that your man may practice his new skills on you and often get it wrong. It takes a while for the pendulum to return to the middle when it's been stuck at the other side for so long.

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Executive Member of SRL-Resources, the Family Law People on this site (Look for the Avatars). Be mindful what you post in public areas. 
By the sounds of things they still have a symbiotic relationship to which they both need at this time, whether this is because neither have decided to make the effort to diffuse the situation or that their personalities have engrained from the prior relationship is irrelevant.

To achieve resolution in most conflicts people have to take the time to recognise the triggers and negate them.

Trigger is my descriptive word but it really is more like a trap for the stupid, no offence because I'm stupid too. They are best described as standard behavioural responses that have become habit and although the words may change the meaning is the same. The solution although simple is extremely hard work because it takes commitment, self control and willpower.

One person has to step outside the situation and take responsibility to remove the triggers, this in itself if you remove the sexist cogitation lends to some of what Jon has said simplified, your man has to take a stand build his strength and confidence and put into play some new rules but as Sage has expressed this is not your responsibility, hard as it may seem you are not one of their parents and even if you side with the kids as to what they say about the other parent it can backfire with major ferocity and you could become the enemy so care is needed.

As Artemis states " there is a lot of difference between assertion and aggression " unless you are blinded by the treasure you seek and then they can be very similar to the participants and the receives views as aggression where the instigator views as being assertive.

If he wants resolution he will need  to change his habits and take back some of his power that he has given the other party willingly in the past.

But this is only my opinion and Sage may find a more beneficial way to reduce the conflict the thing is you may need to try a few suggestions until you do find a workable solution, just take careful note of Sages suggestion of not doing his work for him.

Best of luck D4E
I think all people need to build assertiveness (discussed at length elsewhere) but also recognise their emotions, validate their feelings and thoughts and be able to express themselves. It really can help with relationships. While it might be consider 'sexist' to suggest men need more help and special skills in this area than women - I still suggest it.

That does not mean I hate women or all women are bad all men are victims blah, etc. It just means - being a man entitles one to see oneself as A MAN  (not the ultimate of denial - just a PERSON) and understand what that means to them.

In the same way its OK to see oneself as a WOMAN and whatever that means.

I personally believe that this gender view is one of the views people can use to see things another way - as well as the PERSON view, victim, hero view, roles, etc.

One of the problems is that strong or assertive people are sometime seen as too full on or aggressive so instead they become timid to and shy - rather than hurt those people afraid of them.

One of my friends told a story about himself growing up.
All he said to me was 'I was tall for my age all through school'. This (with enough imagination) shows all sorts of abuses, taunting, fear, laughter, expectations and so on that one places on another person just because of THEIR biases and perceptions.

 Maybe I am not explaining myself well enough
No sly dig intentional Jon and although it may be caught up in situational political correctness and perhaps a simpler view of sexism it sometimes needs to think of people as entities that act in a specific way mainly because if you do stereo type, which all are guilty of then you limit the amount of useable information that can be given to help, apart from being reminded of monti python's the life of Brian where every man ( or woman ) that reflects on aspects of this quite some years ago.

I do not disagree that a high percentage of fathers out there are seeking help from worse case scenario's and it does help to be aware of what may happen and some have good reason to hold bias and despise the person whom has caused such pain in their lives but it is still habitual that gender sticks up for it's part of the some and may offend those of lesser skin density perhaps thats why I used  cogitation.

I do agree that it's a very confusing time to be a man where there seems so many thing we have to be and even then perhaps not right because they liked what we were in the first place and many men know what you are speaking of just that for Prachay to go off and tell her man what you've suggested may confuse him more and escalate problems between them. I agree with you that men need more help in understanding their situation and and how best to diffuse it, empowerment for men really I guess.
I think there are many support groups and areas which can help people who are going through this stuff, DIDs, Lone Fathers, parents without partners, as well as counselling groups etc.

the point really is about using the chance to see others, talk real stuff, make up your own mind, check your value system, learn about other people's experiences, understand the statistics , understand the history , etc.

I was suggesting that her man should visit this site and have a look at other people's discussions, , experiences and ideas. - This all helps in opening up and improving communication. The constant 'sexist' type accusations and so on are a bit of a bore really and as I have said before - many times those sorts of instant judgments are usually designed to avoid discussion more than anything - which is just counter productive to any sort of communication but there will always be (no matter what the topic) those who are quicker to reach all sorts of judgments than others. Some people are more open to ideas - even if they are different to what they have been trained to believe.


 Maybe I am not explaining myself well enough
In this time it is confusing being a man we seem to have to live up to what we are suppose to be and still have our cave man instincts stirred with a little gentlemanly behaviour and perhaps in there mixed in is women who have been told men need direction otherwise they can't achieve.

In my opinion there is an unfortunate need for political correctness to negate things being taken to extremes. Much like avoiding triggers that you know will effect the other person. Calling a spade a spade will always get the response from someone that it's a shovel.

Although I may not disagree with some points that are made I can stand outside and look in and see why it would offend some, there is also the consideration that politeness and respect to other may be mistaken for political correctness and avoidance techniques could be presented as fear, taking a stand may work or it may make things worse as you have suggested in many cases it is done to create a negative reaction from the man and if we are aware of this and bite at the bait then more fool us.

Words are powerful tools and they can invoke war just as easy as they can diminish suffering too often are they used to incite because we give them more power than they deserve so it stands to reason that when we take a word away then the idea comes forth, to this point the idea may make more sense than the word, judgements come in many cases from words used that have social cogitations attached to them and in many cases the person is aware of this so if the word is policed doesn't it stand to reason that they then have to express the idea in a different manner. Perhaps this little token gesture may align people to the idea then who could be offended by the word.

Remove sexist attitudes pondered perhaps by the reader will then be left with some valid points, my little tongue in cheek black humour playing on words asking more consideration be given to what is behind the strong words used.

Over time I have learnt that part of me is being comfortable with the necessity of political correctness on open forums for both men and women and equality is not about being the same it's about allowing differences but that is simply opinion that I am enough of a man to have and voice, not through fear but rather acceptance.

I have felt the shame of allowing another person to degrade me for years and losing myself to the abyss but when I finally learnt how to walk again I understood who I am and I am happy with that person and I do not mind discussing the issues but I'm not going to convince people that my way is best but rather just an option as any one's is.

 
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