Children playing parents

Children learn from a very early age how to play their parents just so they get what they want. Children tend to learn very quickly how things work with their parents, particularly if their parents are having problems.

They learn that just because their mum might say ‘no,’ doesn’t mean their father will. They also learn that if they were to ask for something, that something will usually appear. A child may adapt their request to that of each parent so that they increase their chance of acceptance.

It doesn’t take children long to realise the advantages of playing one parent against another so that they get what they want. Through their ‘knowing’ both parents, they will adapt to their parent’s circumstances, in order to extract what they want. Children tend to know the parent that gives in and may choose to focus their energy on convincing that parent instead.

Sadly, where there is miscommunication between the parents, a child will often use one of their parents to again extract what they want. For example, one parent may approach a child and get them to agree to their plan without speaking to their spouse. Although this is quite common it is not recommended, as it teaches children that it’s okay to manipulate and that it’s acceptable behaviour.

Parents must stand firm where children are trying to pit each parent. It’s important parents focus their attentions on each other and work as a team, otherwise they’re sending the wrong message out to their child.


30 Mar, 2018

2 thoughts on “Children playing parents

  1. My parents were usually the ones playing us against each other, which was actually pretty sad and pathetic.

    There was always the underlying message that they were only together because of us kids and they were always testing our loyalties, just in case they ever got around to getting a divorce again.

    My mother was the one that everyone would say that I was manipulating to get what I wanted, but it was more along the lines of her giving me what I wanted in exchange for my obedience like giving a dog a treat.

    My siblings always said that I was very spoiled, but I don’t think that they realized what the price was that I had to pay for her attention. She expected me to always do her bidding, even when it was treating my siblings or my father badly, because they wouldn’t do what she wanted.

    She eventually turned me into a monster that I didn’t even recognize or want to be, with her brainwashing. People think I’m kidding when I say that she should have worked for the CIA with how good she was at it.

    Everybody thought that she was this sweet little lady, but didn’t seem to notice that behind closed doors she turned into a shrieking harpy, capable of crushing your soul with just a few choice words.

    It still makes me physically ill when I think about it too much, seeing as I behaved in ways that I wasn’t very proud of, but when you’re rewarded for that kind of behavior as a kid, you really don’t know any better.

    My father wasn’t much better, since he was always whispering in my ear about how I should treat her just to be a little shit and thought it was hilarious.

    This is why I’m actually glad when people decide not to have kids since they are usually the ones who will end up despising them the most.

    Obviously it’s no wonder as to why I ended up with such serious mommy issues and ending up in such toxic relationships with women who were down right batshit crazy, who have used and abused me the same way she did.

    Looking back on it, this was how I figured out why so many people keep ending up in the same type of relationships, but just with different people like I have done.

    My friend keeps asking me Why I would stay in my current relationship, since she treats me like a retarded slave, but it really isn’t that hard to figure out.

    You live what you know. I was well trained in the art of people pleasing, which is pretty much a waste of time with someone like her, seeing as nothing I could ever really do would make her happy, or at least anything I have tried.

    Right at this point I just want to find a way to escape that doesn’t leave me feeling like I’m the one who gets the shaft, like always used to happen.

    1. Thanks Randy. As hard as it is to hear, your friend is absolutely right. You’re in the driving seat. You get to make your own decisions as to who you choose to have in your life. He’s got your back.

      I came to realise the same thing myself. And as scary as it seems to make the first move, not making any move is more scary. I think once you have more self-confidence, you’ll find it easier to make a decision and stick with it.

      As far as your parents are concerned, they’re not unique playing one sibling against another. It also happened to me. It’s sad when children play their parents in the same way. Parents should work with their children.

      I understand you having to do your parent’s bidding Randy. That usually happens when a parent can’t cope with themselves and they use a child to do their bidding.

      Or they can’t cope with one of their children and they use another child to bid for them. Either way it’s classed as child abuse.

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