Ask Jigsaw: Scared of being hurt again

Ask Jigsaw: Scared of being hurt again

Friday, 17 July 2020

I’ve never gotten along with my dad and he’s really hurt me in the past. Then he moved and now he’s calling me and being nice but he never apologised. I’m scared he’ll hurt me again and I want to forgive him I just don’t know how. What do you think I should do? Sorry to bother you with this i know it’s a hard time for everyone right now.


Hi Anna,

I’m glad that you got in touch because you deserve to be supported in this situation. Conflict with our parents can really affect us. From a young age, we learn to do what our parents tell us and we can feel a responsibility to do what they say. It’s understandable that you feel uncertain.

It’s our parents’ role to protect us from harm and to treat us with warmth and love. It is wrong, and in some cases illegal, for our parents to hurt us. It sounds like you’ve been hurt in the past. Whether that was physical or emotional, you are right to make sure you are protected from it happening again.

Jigsaw Clinician
It can be helpful to weigh up the risks and benefits to you of working on this relationship.

However, all of us will make mistakes at different times in our lives. It sounds like your dad wants to rebuild a relationship with you. It can be helpful to weigh up the risks and benefits to you of working on this relationship. It is your decision both whether to re-engage with your dad, and also how to go about this.

It might be helpful to get support in making this decision. Is there a caring adult in your life that you trust? We can feel pressure to do what our parents ask of us, so having someone else to support our choice is helpful. If you’re not comfortable speaking to someone you know, you could use the free helpline from childline to speak to someone impartial and understanding.

There are lots of different ways to have a relationship with parents. Initially, you might be comfortable with an email, and in time decide to have phone contact or to meet up. It’s up to you to decide what you want, although it’s essential that you have support to follow through with your decision.

I wish you the best of luck in making your decision.

Take care,

Megan, Jigsaw Clinician

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