My father has always been very controlling, particularly through money. If he gives me a birthday gift of cash, it usually comes with instructions as to how it should be spent. He then invariably checks to make sure his wishes have been followed. He is also very suspicious about people’s motives, generally thinks the worst of everyone and always believes people are trying to cheat him.
Some years ago his mother, my grandmother, died and he gave me some of her jewellery to keep for my own children when they grew up. It was nice of him and I put everything safely away. I recently found out that he had apparently asked the children what they thought of the gifts. As they are still far from grown-up I hadn’t even mentioned it to them. A few days later he rang and accused me of selling her treasures and using the money for myself. He has since threatened to cut me out of his will and to tell everyone that I am both a liar and a thief. I don’t mind not inheriting his money but it will be shameful to be ostracised and my name blackened by the family.
I have tried to reason with him but he sees my explanations as ‘feeble excuses from a guilty person’. My mother is kind but weak and never stands up to him so she would not support me even if I asked her to.
Some horrid parents use money and their inheritance as a way to control and manipulate their offspring. It sounds like your father is also highly sensitive about being cheated and generally suspicious of people. This is both sad and difficult for you as there is little you can do to change his attitudes. Instead try thinking positively about yourself. Your friends and your own family value you and know you are trustworthy. As he assumes everyone is out to cheat him, it is likely that others in your social circle have come up against this too. If you know of anyone this has happened to, try opening up to them. It will help you feel you are not alone. Meanwhile keep reminding yourself that you are a good person whatever he says.