Legal Question in Family Law in Texas

Ever since I was little my father has called me worthless and stupid etc. when I was 11 the day before my 12th birthday, my mom kicked him out because she had enough. Well we didn't talk for like 6 months. Then my cousin / best friend ( on my moms side ) died and I fell into depression, and we started talking.. It was good for about a year. So as the story goes, I was 13 about 2 months before my 14th birthday my dad started the name calling again and yelling like 2 inches away from my face telling me I was stupid and never going to be as good as my sisters ( from his previous marriage, before my mom ) and I would go home from his house crying and begging my mom not to talk to him because I thought it was my fault that he called me worthless, like I wasn't meeting his standards as a daughter. Well me and his 18 yea old room mate, which he is 47 so I find it bet off that this 18 year d girl is is living with my father. But we went to a concert and she missed the turn so my dad threw his phone and shattered the windshield of her car. On our way back home I called my mom and she said I didn't have to see him again. And that was in April, so I didn't talk to him until a few days before my birthday, my mother made me invite him out to dinner. A few days later my older sister said I needed to talk to him so I called him and said I didn't like the way he talked to me and he said that I needed to be talked to like a father talks to his daughter. A father shouldn't tell his daughter she's a slut. Or that she's worthless. Or anything rude. And then he told me to get my head out of my ass. I then started crying and I hung up on him. He has texted me several times but I refuse to talk to him. My oldest sister is mad at me because I don't want to talk to him.. I want to take him to court or something because its verbal abuse and I am sick and tired of him thinking he's such a good dad when in reality, he makes me depression get worse and worse. I don't know what to do. Please help me. Can I take him to court or something?

Asked on 7/17/13, 10:42 pm

3 Answers from Attorneys

Adam Kielich The Kielich Law Firm
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Unfortunately you cannot take a parent to court and sue them for being a jerk. If you could do that, I would have done it to my parents when I was growing up. I definitely understand how you feel.

However, it does sound like you do not need to have him around you. You should have a serious talk with your mom about severing your connection with him. Until he has a court order protecting his rights to visitation, he does not have a legal right to have any connection with you. That might also mean severing your relationship with his other children. It's not healthy for you to be around that kind of environment or be treated that way. If your mother requires you to be around him and you feel endangered then you need to call the police or CPS to get involved. If he is throwing objects in a car with you then that is not very far away from doing something violent to you.

It would probably be a good idea to talk to your mom about your depression, if you haven't already. If you don't feel like you can talk to your mom then you should try to speak with one of the counselors at your school (I don't know if they are available to talk to during the summer). If you can't talk to anybody else, you can call CPS and talk to somebody there about what is going on.

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7/17/13, 11:05 pm
Thomas Daley Power Daley PLLC
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I am so sorry you are having to endure this horrible behavior. Clearly something is wrong with your father and he is projecting that on you. There are two things to do.

(1) You need to find a way to get some counseling. You can't make him a better or even a different person, but you can get some help in how his inexcusable conduct impacts you. For example, if I call you an "IDIOT", you probably won't care too much because I don't know you well enough to pass judgment on you. Well, he doesn't know the value you have inside you, he doesn't see the strength of your spirit or the power of your persistence. So, he doesn't know enough to pass judgment on you either. A counselor can help you with this.

(2) If you have court-ordered visitation and your mother is going to make you go, she could file suit to stop the visits or modify the terms and conditions of your visits. It would probably be an expensive undertaking and might not turn out the way you hope, so don't judge her if she doesn't do that. Her making you invite your dad to dinner was good advice. That's what I would have told her if she hired me to advise her. It's a worthwhile step, even if it doesn't work out perfectly.

Be Strong!!

/tjd/

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7/18/13, 9:12 am
Fran Brochstein Attorney & Mediator
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Adam has given you an excellent and thoughtful answer.

I agree with Adam.

Stay away from your Dad.

Get some counseling. If you have no money, look on the internet and find some free or low-income (sliding fee scale) counseling.

If you are 18, you no longer have to see your father ever again.

You might also want to go see a medical doctor and have a total physical. Perhaps there is a medical reason why you are feeling bad. Sometimes a medical condition can do it.

Lastly, I wise woman often recommended to her college students that they begin walking then slowly jogging. Why? Because you could get good at it so quickly. Also, being in the fresh air is good for you and makes you feel better. Get outside and enjoy nature. It also gets you away from people and lets you think clearly. So get outside and just walk. Start at a block and work up to a mile then 2 miles. You will also look better very gradually. And, you know that if you look better then you will feel better - I'm a female too so I know that! LOL!

If possible, join a gym. You will meet people and have fun. Hang out with people your age and find supportive and fun people -- that are not your relatives. I don't recommend a bar! You don't need alcohol and the drug scene - it brings negative energy.

Also, begin eating better and juicing. Again, it brings you positive and healthy energy into your body.

Try taking a daily vitamin. Sometimes a vitamin deficiency can make you feel bad.

There is a system on you-tube called "emotional freedom technique". Look it up. There are a lot of videos. Many people find it very powerful. It is free. It is impossible to do it wrong.

You need to be around positive and healthy people.

Join a fun and positive church. Hang out with young people that are fun.

You need to laugh and have fun. You are young. You deserve fun and laughter. You deserve to know that you are a worthy person!

Volunteer at a place like an animal shelter or a food pantry. You will again meet fun people that are supportive. You will feel successful and productive. You could meet someone that will give you a job. You will build your self-esteem.

Find a fun hobby - jewelry making. etc. You will meet fun people. You will build your self-esteem. You might develop a career.

Lastly, you are young. Your life is just beginning. Believe me when I tell you that at your age that your life is the worst that it is. It will get much better. You need to take "baby steps" now to make it much better later.

When you hear your dad's negative comments think "cancel, cancel, cancel" -- his words are b.s.!

I've given you a lot of ideas of how to build your self-esteem and your future.

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7/18/13, 9:22 am

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