I told my therapist about how I was affected by things a parent did that hurt me. He said that they were “normal” parent things. He compared me being called a “failure” (among other things) to his boss making him do tasks he didn’t feel like doing, saying that “just because you’re hurt or uncomfortable doesn’t mean you’re being abused”. He also said that if someone is hurting me, it’s up to me to decide what my emotional reaction is to it & that there’s nothing I can do about it. Is this true?
realsocialskills said:
No, it’s not true.
Parents shouldn’t call their kids failures. Calling a kid a failure is not at all similar to making an employee do their job even when they don’t feel like it.
Everyone has to do things they don’t feel like doing sometimes. Everyone feels uncomfortable sometimes. Everyone hurts others in relationships, including parents. All of that is true, but there is a line. And calling a child a failure is over it.
Also, don’t get too caught up in whether something is serious enough to count as abuse. If someone did something to you that they ought not to have done, it’s ok to object. It’s ok to say that it’s still hurting you. It’s ok to want help dealing with the ways its affecting you. If someone is hanging everything on what’s technically abuse, that’s a major red flag. (Especially if you said it was hurting you and they responded as though you were accusing someone of abuse even if you never said that.)
I don’t know what your life circumstances are, but it sounds to me like maybe you’re a teenager and this is a therapist that your parents are sending you to in hopes that it will make you more compliant. If so, this post might be helpful.