Bickering & Emotional Abuse

art from the Irish Times
Does anyone else have fighting parents?

My female boss is bitchy with her husband but only as needed, because he doesn't seem to get anything or do anything. He is mean to her, like cruel. He says terrible things to her in front of me and the children and I don't know what to do. I'd like to leave the room, but the last time this happened, I was literally frying fish. 

She was complaining about him not being around this weekend to take the kids to get swim team supplies. He said to her, "You want me to play the Dad role, but you have no problem subcontracting out your mom role" and some other stuff ending with, "don't kid yourself, you're no mom."

How do you handle it? I feel myself getting nervous, my heart beating fast and almost feeling panicked. I'd rather not deal with this at all, but imagine that I will be so I am hoping for advice!

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Anonymous said...

Find a new job. You don't deserve to be in a toxic relationship and you can't save the kids. This marriage needs therapy, divorce and mediator but its going to be a long time before that happens. Save yourself. Don't be collateral damage.


CleaverJune said...

You need to not get involved in their relationship. If you can't work in the environment with the belief that it will not change, you need to leave.

Jean said...

Don't get involved but the stressful situation can get to you. Are you open to looking elsewhere for work?

this_nick said...

I'm pretty sure most of us are gonna say we'd handle it by not staying in such a job. Personally I would also sit them down and tell them I was leaving because of the toxic environment they are creating for their children. (Not saying what you should do, just answering "how would you handle it?")

Anonymous said...

I have been in this situation before and stuck with the family for years. I really regret it.

I would look for another job. Keep an eye out to see if the child is abused in the meantime and report it if so. Be there for the child while you can. But don't let yourself stay in the situation. You can't save them. And you need to put yourself first.

If you end up getting too close, it'll be harder and harder to break away from them. And most likely, they'll end up playing emotional mind games on you too. It's just so sad a child's in the middle of this.