How can I stop my mom from talking bad about my dad? They’re divorced.

Question:

My parents got divorced about six years ago. Ever since then my mom is always talking bad about him. I love my dad and don’t want to hear bad stuff about him. It’s getting to the point I don’t want to hang out with her.

Answer:

Unfortunately, Nikki, this is too often the case after parents divorce. Rather than focus on the psychological health of their child, parents, one or both, start using the child as a pawn to hurt the other parent. This is the worst thing a divorced parent can do. I would suggest you tell your mother that you don’t want to hear negative things about your dad; remind her that you’re not the one who’s divorced from him. If she persists, leave the room if at all possible. Sometimes parents just don’t get how much damage they’re causing. You may want to choose a time when she’s not upset to bring up the topic of how hurtful it is to hear negative things about your dad. She might be more apt to listen, than when she’s in the throes of bashing him. Give it a try. If that doesn’t work, let me know. Good luck!