Originally Posted by nextcommercial
It probably seemed like you didn't really Do much for them.. but, it left the dad thinking. He may never admit it, but he's thinking about it. Deep down, he probably knows he was out of line..
I think this is probably closer to the truth than anything.
He's been better behaved all day today. I'm pretty sure he feels the collective disapproval about his actions last night, and knows that it won't be tolerated. I think he stayed in his room so long this morning because he was ashamed and embarrassed.
We're not going to split this family. We don't have the power to and we wouldn't choose to. They are a devoted couple and he is a devoted family man. So that's just not going to happen. He is not going to leave his home. And, importantly, his family doesn't want him to.
CPS isn't going to remove children for being dunked in the pool or for being yelled at and hit with a thrown hat. So being confrontational and histrionic isn't going to benefit anyone. Least of all the children, who would probably be the most upset and injured of anyone by it.
We are all carefully modeling gentle parenting, both with our own kids and also with his kids, before he has a chance to jump in with his tyrannical methods. I'm certain that it's making an impression on him. He won't change overnight, but if it spares the children some drama and fear then it helps.
Dh commented that if I saw him dunk dd like that, he knew that he would be divorced before the week was up. And it's absolutely true - I could not be married to someone who would treat our child that way. But it's not my marriage and SIL is making her own way through this as best she can. Thankfully, she is just an outstanding mother.
So, we'll see how this goes. If he comes unglued again then there'll certainly be fireworks. Because I cannot tolerate that abuse in my home. But in the meantime we're all trying to be as supportive as we can in helping him learn that he can be a better father.