What My Violent, Abusive, Neglectful Parents Taught Me About Being A Man

Dr Nicholas Jenner

I spend a lot of time talking about other people’s childhoods and how it affects the way they see the world. If is part of my job as a therapist to look at the cause of dysfunction in their lives and there is usually plenty to work on. I hear some real horror stories and some of these make you wonder how some people have managed to stagger into adulthood with any functionality at all. Sometimes in quiet moments, some of these stories naturally make me reflect on my own past and the road I have taken since.

My father was a violent, abusive cheater who made a conscious choice to abuse. I had 3 siblings but he decided that only one, me, was going to be the focus of his beatings, violent, neglectful behavior and punitive parenting style. My mother was an enabling,  controlling codependent who allowed this and…

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