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dahgts

Skokie, IL

#1 Feb 9, 2013
DEAR AMY: For years my husband has been controlling which television programs we watch and which radio stations we listen to. When I choose a radio station, he tells me the music is garbage and will tune it to his station. Until now, I’ve never felt it was worth arguing over.

Yesterday he was out of the house, and I was listening to a station that my daughters and I enjoy. When my husband came home, my daughter expressed her concern that the station was “not one of daddy’s.” She didn’t want to be confronted by him and went upstairs.

Sure enough he came in, realized that it was not one of his stations, said the music was garbage and turned off the radio, despite my objections.

He does the same thing with the television. His inflexibility and dominating behavior are obvious to me in other situations that are more important to me (such as the extreme lack of organization in the house and his unwillingness to look for a job).

He is a stay-at-home dad. This was great while the kids were little, but due to instability in my own professional position, this is now causing concern.-- Unable to Change Course

DEAR UNABLE: You have wrapped many complaints about your husband into one bundle. From your account he is intimidating and domineering; so intimidating that he has trained your daughter that he literally owns the airwaves.

Imagine the impact of his behavior on your girls’ impression of how men do/should behave.

This is not about a clash of media taste, though I believe that whoever occupies a room first (or is making dinner) gets to choose the playlist (truly tasteless or degrading music and commentary are not for public consumption and — like the Supreme Court — the adults declare that we know where the line is when we hear it).

I agree that he needs to change in many ways for you to have a happier, peaceful, orderly household. You should try to mediate some of these issues in couples counseling. Failing that, if you are unwilling to leave the marriage, you should pursue counseling to learn why (and how) you stay.

DEAR AMY: In a four-day visit, our middle-age daughter (from out-of-state) flew off the handle over minor matters. This daughter is a control freak who orchestrates the lives of her three young-adult daughters and husband. They all operate and apparently thrive on her instant and constant advice.

At our house, she seemed delighted when she was able to humiliate and make cruel and inaccurate statements to us, her elderly parents. It was truly scary to observe her acting calm and loving one minute and then becoming emboldened and excited to tell a humiliating 40-year-old story that criticized her mother. When her fury was over and her mother left weeping she said,“You know I love you...” It’s almost as if she enjoys creating conflict.

After spending time with her, we’re left exhausted and devastated. What should we be doing?-- Sad Parents

DEAR SAD: Your daughter might have a rage or personality disorder. Any number of things could be going on. She sounds almost too volatile to confront safely, but her problems do not have to become your problem.

When someone is unpredictable, frightening and creates chaos, the most logical thing to do is to avoid being trapped with that person. Limit visits to very short encounters when you have a ready escape hatch; when you’ve had enough, you can say,“This visit isn’t going well, so we’re going to have to call it a day.”

DEAR AMY: More on the issue of treating “step” children as “real” children.

My sister-in-law was not the best stepparent, but I admired her when her parents sent gifts to only her two birth children. She boxed them back up with a letter stating,“I have four children. If you wish to give gifts to any, you must include them all. If you can’t include them all, don’t send any.” Her parents got the picture.

Children are easy to love; they don’t need to be related.-- An Admiring Fan

DEAR FAN: Your sister-in-law’s spunk is inspiring.

Since: Jan 10

Location hidden

#2 Feb 9, 2013
L1 way to teach your daughters to tolerate this crap. Therapy for all three of you.

L2 no inheritance for her, Also you think her kids (I assume they are adults if you are elderly) thrive you really aren't getting it.

L3 so she wasn't a good stepparent but put on a big show at Christmas to make herself look better. Got it.w

Since: Mar 09

West Palm Beach, FL

#3 Feb 9, 2013
L1: Wow, he sounds like a real peach. Why did you marry him?

L2: "What should we be doing?" I think the real question is what should you have done 40 years ago, but it's too late for that. Unless, like Amy said, she really does have some sort of mental imbalance. In which case, therapy and meds for her.

L3: Heh. What Ang said.
dahgts

Chicago, IL

#4 Feb 9, 2013
L1: At the risk of being called a man-hater by a certain bona-fide woman-hater I will say this guy is a controlling ass and should go and live in a crappy, trashy and dirty motel room so he can have his tv and radio all to himself.

“I Am Mine”

Since: Dec 08

Location hidden

#5 Feb 9, 2013
Women should never be allowed to hold the remote control!

Toj

“Equality”

Since: Jul 12

Location hidden

#6 Feb 9, 2013
Thanks for post dahgts.

As for L1 and L2 -- let's hook them both up. That wife in L1 would have a better life.

L3: I wonder what made her "not the best stepparent". Eye of the beholder, I suppose b/c she did the right thing there and someone who would do that probably made sure all her kids were treated as equal as possible. No parent is perfect.

Since: Jan 10

Location hidden

#7 Feb 9, 2013
childless people make the best parents!!!:)

Since: Dec 09

Smalltown, Colorado

#8 Feb 9, 2013
I'm in heaven! LW1 and LW2 are dealing with controllers for me to bash. IMO, controllers should live alone so that can control to their heart's content and not bother anyone else.

Since: Dec 09

Smalltown, Colorado

#9 Feb 9, 2013
I can;t typee this mornings.

“...,to wit”

Since: Jun 09

Location hidden

#10 Feb 9, 2013
Mister Tonka wrote:
Women should never be allowed to hold the remote control!
some of us remember /know that you don't need a remote.

“reign in blood”

Since: May 09

Wilmington, IL

#11 Feb 9, 2013
RedheadwGlasses wrote:
Also you think her kids (I assume they are adults if you are elderly)
"orchestrates the lives of her three young-adult daughters and husband."

Toj

“Equality”

Since: Jul 12

Location hidden

#12 Feb 9, 2013
edogxxx wrote:
<quoted text>
"orchestrates the lives of her three young-adult daughters and husband."
Isn't it nice to be right at least once? ;)
dahgts

Chicago, IL

#13 Feb 9, 2013
PEllen wrote:
<quoted text>some of us remember /know that you don't need a remote.
Ha..and only AM radio in the car.

“reign in blood”

Since: May 09

Wilmington, IL

#14 Feb 9, 2013
dahgts wrote:
L1: At the risk of being called a man-hater by a certain bona-fide woman-hater I will say this guy is a controlling ass and should go and live in a crappy, trashy and dirty motel room so he can have his tv and radio all to himself.
I love how Amy "hinted" the woman should divorce this guy. Hey, she married him. Raised two children with him. I doubt his behavior is anything new. Then she throws in the fact he's out of work and has been for quite some time. She sounds like she's growing bitter.

And how is he to dictate what TV shows and radio stations everyone should listen to? He doesn't even pay the bills.

I think if the sexes were reversed, you all would be bashing the LW for not having a backbone and being a doormat. The dude is a controlling dickwad, sure, but the LW has her part of the blame, as well. She gets very little sympathy from me.

“reign in blood”

Since: May 09

Wilmington, IL

#15 Feb 9, 2013
Toj wrote:
<quoted text>
Isn't it nice to be right at least once? ;)
Oh don't start, honey. Yesterday I proved you all wrong and myself right. Again. Face it, I have never been proven wrong about anything I've claimed. Why do you people continue to doubt me? From now on, just start taking what I say as gospel. Wisdom is meant to be shared. Seek thee out when thee wishes to learn the truth.

Since: Jan 10

Location hidden

#16 Feb 9, 2013
he's not unemployed; he is a stay at home parent. He has no more explanation fo rhis controlling ways than a stay at home mom does, whose children are older and don't need so much care.

Since: Jan 10

Location hidden

#17 Feb 9, 2013
People like LW's husband (note, I said PEOPLE, not MEN) don't do well in a structured work environment. Many business owners/self employed people are self-employed/the boss because they can't handle being under ANYONE.

Since: Mar 09

West Palm Beach, FL

#18 Feb 9, 2013
RedheadwGlasses wrote:
he's not unemployed; he is a stay at home parent. He has no more explanation fo rhis controlling ways than a stay at home mom does, whose children are older and don't need so much care.
"His inflexibility and dominating behavior are obvious to me in other situations that are more important to me (such as the extreme lack of organization in the house and his unwillingness to look for a job)."

Sounds to me like he's a SAHD by default.

Since: Jan 10

Location hidden

#19 Feb 9, 2013
j_m_w wrote:
<quoted text>
"His inflexibility and dominating behavior are obvious to me in other situations that are more important to me (such as the extreme lack of organization in the house and his unwillingness to look for a job)."
Sounds to me like he's a SAHD by default.
Or started as a sahp ut when the girls got old enough where they no longer needed a parent at home so muc....
Wow my reading today gets a big fat F!

Since: Mar 09

West Palm Beach, FL

#20 Feb 9, 2013
RedheadwGlasses wrote:
<quoted text>
Or started as a sahp ut when the girls got old enough where they no longer needed a parent at home so muc....
Wow my reading today gets a big fat F!
Your typing isn't so hot either.
;)

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