When you watch your child make a huge mistake


Recently, the family courts have established the requirement that the child in question be heard in a custody dispute and that the child’s wishes so expressed be given great weight in the decision.

This is where we mothers with a toxic Ex become fearful, knowing how much the child’s will is influenced by the toxic narcissistic child’s father.

How can we protect our children from making a capital, life-changing mistake now when they express their wishes in court?

After all, we can’t explain to them the extent of what this might entail without reaching into the manipulation box ourselves and driving the child even further into loyalty conflict!

So what can you do?

In the past, we could more easily protect our children from making mistakes

Back then, when your toddler wobbled through the living room with unsteady legs and you could see how he slightly tilted – bang! – you were there to catch him before he tipped over and hit his head.

During this time, you had all the alarm systems in the “watch out” position. You padded everything you could, secured cables, sockets, doors and windows.

As your child grew older and more confident in his or her movements, you gradually outgrew this guarded position.

You simply trusted your child not to tip over, yank on the cords, or put his finger in the socket.

You learned to let go little by little.

At some point, your child started climbing on wall ledges or trees. You watched him fall down – but thank God he didn’t hurt himself – but he bravely climbed back up and got more and more practice.

The child became more confident. And so did you.

Phew. Another phase done!

And so it went on and on. The child learned to swim, to play soccer, to ski or to climb a mountain.

Sometimes everything went well, sometimes it got a more severe injury.

As an experienced, confident mother, these injuries no longer panic you over the years, as they did in the very beginning with your first baby!

But at some point you realize that the physical injuries are not as bad as the psychological ones.

Like those that you yourself have suffered and with which you may even still be struggling today.

And you witness how your child is violently attacked and criticized by a teacher in the second grade because he or she cannot write as beautifully as the person sitting next to him or her.

And you remember your own feeling of inferiority that you had towards your own strict teachers during that time.

You get how your daughter is manipulated by her father when she is 9 years old. How she wants to help her beloved dad because he is so alone now.

You know that he is cheating on the child and in the back of his mind he just wants to avoid having to pay child support.

Maybe the child is so passionate about helping him that he is very determined to appear before the judge. He can really feel his new power in the adult world, and he also knows that you are the strong one and can get along easier without it.

You’re not so sure about that, but somehow it’s true.

You ARE the mentally stronger party, provided you have a narcissistic Ex who needs to cover up his low self-worth with aggression and manipulation – even if you don’t currently feel that way.

Anyway, you can find and evolve into that certainty if you put your focus on it.

You know and suspect the lies your Ex is telling the child.

You know that he has a completely different attitude towards your values, which you would like to pass on to your child so that he becomes strong and resilient.

You know that he is not empathetic and cannot accompany the child empathetically enough in everyday life.

And you may even remember your own narcissistic parent, and what toxic thoughts were planted in you early on, and have not forgiven them to this day because of it.

Now it all seems to be repeating itself.

Maybe everything went relatively well until the age of 15/16. And all of a sudden your daughter comes around the corner with a hooligan who is quite similar to your windy Ex.

She wants to marry him.

You fight against it with all means, but as soon as she is 18, she runs away and marries the guy and gets pregnant right away. 😱

(Well, how many secret horror scenarios am I servicing in you right now? Please keep reading, I promise it will get more helpful!)

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Anyway, you see your kid running to his doom.

And you realize that you can no longer just reach out your arms to quickly catch him.

But that the path your child is taking – whether he is free to do so at 18 or is heard in court at 9 and awarded to the father by the judge against your will – will have a significant impact on his emotional state later on.

You see the inner movie inside you and you are desperate.

You wanted to protect your child! And now this – the suffering, the tears, the shame… all this is now waiting for your child.

Stop, sweetheart.

Of course you have the insight and know more than your child! And of course you know your Ex and the true core of his perfidious actions.

However, your child is not you.

You can’t protect your child from bad experiences

Not in front of the poisonous teacher, not in front of evil neighbors, not in front of his own father, who pretends to be a victim and wants to make the child believe that he or she can make him happy.

But the child will draw his or her own conclusions from what they have experienced and will experience in the future.

They will develop their own emotions from it – and also derive their own consequences from it, which may well be different from yours.

Above all, your child will go his or her own way, which will look different from the one you have gone.

He or she will grow into another world with a greater clarity than the world you knew when you came into your first crisis.

They will find out new solutions to problem than what existed yesterday and today.

And do you know what is best?

Your child will always have you by their side no matter what happens

After all, you will never slam the door in your child’s face just because at 9 he was rock solidly of the opinion that he could settle the dispute between his parents with his testimony, and thought he was doing the right thing.

You will never slam the door on her just because your child was so in love at 16 that she thought this man was meant for her life.

You’re never going to keep your arms crossed when he’s standing at your door desperate for answers.

Are you?

You will rather help your child with all your knowledge, empathy and confidence to come to clarity.

Am I getting this right?


Do you want to feel confident about managing child hand-offs with your toxic ex?


What did our mothers actually know about narcissism back then?

How were our mothers encouraged in the past to leave their mean bastard and trust that they could do it?

What offers of help were there in the past?

What ones are you currently accepting for yourself?

My services for moms with a toxic Ex have only been around since 2017, how many moms do you think write to me and tell me, “I wish I had found you 10 years ago!”

I am convinced of this

I believe that in ten years’ time there will be completely different and more varied offers than there are today, in order to be able to better process the mental and emotional injuries and also to forget them.

Why on earth would we want to keep the memory of bad situations alive?

I believe that we will always experience and learn more in order to become resilient and happy in our lives.

And I also believe that every person can learn this – if they want to.

What I also believe in:

That every crisis is necessary in order to grow at all

Your child is initially learning to deal with physical pain – the tumble on the stone floor, the finger on the hot stove top, the violent kick at the soccer game.

And he or she is learning to deal with emotional pain. A hundred percent!

However, only if you also trust that your child can learn to do so.

And so I circle back to you, sweetheart

As long as you yourself do not know how best to deal with your emotions and hurts, you will most likely project your difficulties with them onto your child.

However, as long as you experience yourself getting out of an emotional slump and experiencing happier circumstances, then you can pass your own confidence on to your child.

What do you do today when your little child falls and skins his knee?

Do you reinforce his pain over and over again, tell the story to friends and emphasize the terrible circumstances that led to the fall, or do you get a band-aid, hug him lovingly and encourage him to try the feat again?

Which behavior do you think supports your child more in their perception of how to deal with pain and difficulty?

Your confidence in your child’s ability to learn from even the most difficult situations and thus grow mentally is key.

This is the best thing you can teach your child.

If everyone around your child just thinks they are going to fail, then it’s going to be very, very hard, and it’s going to take a hell of a strong personality to show everyone virtually out of defiance: “Look, I did it, even though no one thought I could!”

If you do not feel this confidence – because you yourself know that your child is not yet mentally there – and of course he is not yet there at 9! – the more important it is that you first mentally secure yourself. 

You must FIRST understand and learn to control your beliefs and thus your emotions

So that then, as soon as your child stands in the doorway and wants to talk to you to get questions on his inner confusion, you can stand in your clarity and calmly and confidently help him understand.

Let’s be clear, Sweetheart: of course you will do everything in court, if your child is not yet of age, to prevent the worst.

You will learn to argue against the child’s will and put all your empathetic weight into that argument.

But provided you’ve given it your all, and the dynamic factors – even judges apparently have a lot to learn! – are not the best for your child, then it is and remains your decision with which attitude you want to continue to accompany your child:

Knowing and full of confidence that he or she will learn in this childhood and also process everything emotionally – or full of pity and worry that he or she will not be able to cope.

Which attitude do you choose?

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