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I don't know what I did wrong

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I don't have the best relationship with my parents but this morning completely shocked me and threw me off. My dad asked me what the pots and pans on the stove were and I said something like 'that's mom's stuff' probably a bit incoherently since I'd just gotten up and he suddenly got angry went off at me, said  something like my body language was hostile, and that I was anti-social then turned around and stomped off to sit at the computer. He didn't explain any further and didn't wait for me to try to explain myself. I was too scared to try and clear it up.

It shocked me so much because nothing like this has ever happened before. I honestly don't know what I said or did that came off as hostile. I didn't use any swear words, name calling, didn't say anything sarcastic like "well obviously". I don't know what kind of answer he was looking for. I don't understand if he was  trying to start a conversation, trying to test me, I don't have any answers. 

It was pretty out of the ordinary and I don't know if there' something else going on with him that's making him lose his temper or if there really was something I did that came off as hostile. I ended up wasting most of my energy crying all day. I hated having to sit through dinner with him.

I'm so exhausted. i could hear him talking to my mom about how I don't have any friends and am anti-social. I'm too scared to approach him about it and I don't know whether going through my mom about this is a good idea. I feel like I should say something to someone though because it honestly scared me.

I'm not anti-social but it's difficult to hang onto friends when they people I knew at school live at least a hundred miles away. They didn't bother to keep up any kind of relationship with me despite my messages so what can I do?

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I'm sorry that happened to you, DarkRain  

Family should be a place where people are appreciated and treasured, but sadly that is often not the case.  Sometimes a person is bugged by something in a family member and they focus so much on that, that they completely forget the million and one things about the person that could be appreciated and loved.  

Then being critical becomes the status quo.  Criticism, even covert criticism breeds more criticism and pretty soon everyone is framing every else in only hostile terms.  It is so difficult to stop this vicious circle since someone has to be the first to appreciate and compliment.  In a hostile environment no one wants to be first to do that.  I know that is true in my own family.  I think it sometimes true in other families too.  

I wish I knew the answer to it, but unfortunately I don't.  In my own family if everyone is in a rut of hostile framing of each other, I try to be the one to show appreciation and offer some sincerely felt compliments.  Sometimes that is all that is needed to make things better.  Sometimes it doesn't work at all, especially if the hostile framing is long standing and deep seated.

I can really feel for what you are going through though as this has happened to me so very many times in my life.  It is so painful to feel underappreciated or unappreciated by a family member.  There are no words to describe the pain.

Hope things improve!

- epictetus


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My younger brother, in his early life, was the object of both my grandfather's (mother's father) and my father's projections of the things they liked least in themselves.  They didn't know it at the time, and since my grandfather is dead, I don't think my father would admit to that 100%, though he has evolved a lot.  It was very painful for my brother to be snapped at out of the blue with no apology or explanation.  It was behavior my father endured from his father, so at one point, we had three generations of men suffering at each other's hands.

I'm sorry you have been hurt by your dad's behavior, and I hope it stops.  It's unfair and you don't deserve it. 

Thinking of you,


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