“Hostile aggressive parenting involves the use of power to manipulate children to see things from a parent’s point of view. Hostile aggressive parenting is often present in families during divorce and child custody battles. For example, one parent speaks negatively about the other in front of the children, directly to the children or both. Parents engaging in hostile behavior frequently fight openly in front of the children or refuse to take phone calls from each other, directing their children to relay messages. In these situations, one parent often refuses to let the children see the other parent on scheduled visits, openly violating court-ordered visitation rules. The intention behind the manipulation is to coerce the children into taking sides. This eventually creates an unbalanced family structure as well as serious psychological distress for the children involved.” [Source: parenting.answers.com]
With all the difficulties we had with visitation, and being required to go back to court time and time again, we kept logs of all telephone communications with my husband’s ex, as well as his children. This is from one of those logs:
Telephone call from XXXXXX (my husband’s youngest daughter, who was seven years old at the time) at 6:35 p.m. on Monday, March 4, 1985. XXXXXX called to let her Dad know that she would not be coming over the following weekend. (We had not seen his oldest daughter, who was ten, for months at this time.) XXXXXX also told her Dad during this phone conversation that XXXX (the oldest daughter) was upset because Grandpa MXXXXX slashed the tires on her bicycle.
So, here we have a 7 year old being forced to pass along the message from her mother to her father that visitation would not be taking place the following weekend, while the 10 year old thinks her paternal grandfather slashed the tires on her bike. When we were finally able to talk to the older daughter about the situation dealing with the tires on her bike, she let it be know that the idea of her paternal grandfather slashing her tires came from her mother.
Hostile Aggressive Parenting? You decide ……