Daddy Has Issues

| Australia | Parents & Guardians

(Growing up there were days when my dad would be a bad mood for no apparent reason; sometimes it was due to work. He has moods where he is unbearable to be around and the next day he acts like nothing happened. One day when I get home from school I see my mum is already looking annoyed. Soon it becomes apparent my dad is in a really foul mood. The moment I get through the door he is criticising and complaining about everything — including me BITING AN APPLE TOO LOUDLY! I can sense my mum is seconds away from blowing her top so to make things easier I offer to cook dinner. Within seconds of me getting vegetables out, my dad starts being a jerk.)

Dad: “OH, COME ON! Why you being so bloody slow?! You should have had those boiling in a pot by now!”

Me: “Dad, do you want to have dinner?”

Dad: “Sometime today, please!”

Me: “Then shut up and let me cook!”

(My dad doesn’t like that and stomps off to the living room where he proceeds to watch a never-ending series of news programs on TV with the volume turned way up. At dinner, he grumbles constantly about how dinner is ‘all wrong!’ and makes up imaginary problems with it. Mum repeatedly tells him to be quiet. After dinner, I head over to watch TV,; before I can my dad rudely snatches the remote.)

Dad: *sarcastically* “Gonna let me have a go with the telly?”

Me: “Dad, you’ve hogged the TV since we’ve got home. Let us watch something.”

(Without even asking, he turns on some boring made-for-TV movie and starts reading his paper. After ten minutes of this, it is obvious he isn’t even paying attention.)

Me: “Dad, can we please change the channel? You’re not even watching this.”

(No reaction from my dad, so in frustration, I just pick up the remote and change it. Immediately my dad looks furious.)

Dad: “OI! I WAS WATCHING THAT!”

Me: “No, you weren’t. You’re reading the bloody paper.”

(Dad throws down his paper and clenches his fists angrily.)

Dad: “YOU ARE THE MOST DISRESPECTFUL LITTLE—”

Mum: “OH, SHUT UP!”

(Dad suddenly goes very quiet; Mum is in her chair looking absolutely livid with him.)

Mum: “All night long you’ve nothing but a miserable old grump! You’ve yelled and you’ve shouted at us for no reason other than once again you’re acting like a bloody moron! Now, why don’t you p*** off and go do it somewhere else! I don’t want to see you until tomorrow! Go on, be a pain in the a** somewhere else!”

(Dad now looks very defeated. This is a side to Mum I have never seen before.)

Dad: *meekly* “But he should have asked—”

Mum: “He did! Your nose was buried in that paper. Now, OUT!”

(Dad shuffled out the room awkwardly and went to their room for the rest of the night. True to form, the next day he acted like nothing had happened and seemed genuinely shocked to see me and my mum give him the cold shoulder. He even yelled, “WHY’S NO ONE TALKING TO ME?” Sadly this wasn’t the last time it happened.)

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