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Dealing with a controlling dad

Community Member

Im 26 and live at home. My dad has handeled alot of the family finances for as long as i can remember which has been hard to handle. I was having to ask for money to be taken out of my account if i wanted to go buy a dress or a pair of shoes or to go out for dinner with friends.

When i turned 24 i bought a property as an investment and therefore all my accounts needed to be signed over to me. Having my money signed over to be was great, i finally had that feeling of independence. I decided to spoil myself with an overseas trip and some other items which i could not have bought if i asked as to my dad seemed too expensive even though i was asking for my own money!

Things between us has just gotten really bad, he may not addmit it but he hates the fact he has lost that finacial 'control' over me. He threatens to go to the bank and get my accounts put back in my parents name so he can control things again. I dont know if he's trying to call my bluff or if the bank has actually disclosed my information to him (another issue in itself!)

I just dont know what to do. I feel anxious and depressed because ive done nothing wrong. He feels that ive spent too much money and i have no savings, i have savings but according to him not enough in his eyes. Hes stubborn and doesnt see the effect he is having on me by tying to control what i do with my money.

I believe I am an adult and should be able to live my life according to myself and not according to him. I have an extreamly stable job, im respected in my profession but i just feel trapped in my home life. Im happier when im not at home.

Has anyone eles been through this? Am I being unreasonable?

2 Replies 2

Champion Alumni
Champion Alumni

Hi CLC and a Warm Welcome to the BB Forums

My name is Paul and I understand very well what you are going through. I had a 'Helicopter' dad hovering around me for many years and they can make life more difficult than it needs to be. You are an intelligent and well articulated adult. You are trying to be independent which is the right you have as a responsible adult.

Sometimes a parent has to accept that you are not 12 anymore and let you fly on your own. My super stubborn and controlling dad tried to run my life to such an extent that I have had to cut ties to care for my own well being.

Living at home is a bonus if there is a reasonable harmony ...no worries there and there are many young adults living at home nowadays too.

With all respect to your dad CLC he has been through his 20's. I do hope he can respect that you are entitled to live through your 20's without his interference. You are being perfectly reasonable. Even though he is your dad..he must let you find your own path in life. This is important where your own peace of mind and development is concerned.

I do hope he stops trying to pull your strings CLC

Kind Thoughts


Champion Alumni
Champion Alumni

Dear CLC89

Hello and welcome to Beyond Blue. Wow! I am amazed at your parents having your bank accounts in their names. Once you reach 18 you are definitely able to manage your your own finances, and no, your dad cannot have your bank accounts transferred to his name. He may believe this is the case but it is not correct. So no, you are not being unreasonable. It is your father who is unreasonable.

I suspect your dad wants the best for you and part of that is making sure you have some financial reserves. It makes a lot of sense but it is your choice to do this. Your dad has obviously taught to budget, which is great, and now you can manage this on your own.

If you believe the bank has disclosed your financial standing to your father I suggest you ask the manager. Alternatively, if you cannot get a satisfactory answer, then transfer your accounts to another bank, preferably in an area your father does not go. Perhaps close to where you work? You can still manage your finances without going to the bank by using online banking.

I notice you say you are unhappy at home. Have you considered moving out to a place of your own? Perhaps you could rent a unit for a while and later buy a home for yourself. At 26 most women have left home and have either rented to bought a place of their own. You do not need your parents consent to buy a home for yourself, so have a chat to a bank manager about borrowing money for a home. Even if you do not want to do this immediately it would be useful to have the information on what you can afford etc.

You are most definitely an adult and can manage your own life. It may not be to your dad's liking, but then most parents feel a bit concerned or worried when their children fly the nest. This sort of control by dad is unwarranted and it's sad that he cannot see the damage it is causing your relationship.

I also believe that living with such a controlling person could damage you. No matter how much he loves you and wants the best for you, there comes a time for all parents and children when they live apart.

Consider your options and perhaps write down pros and cons. Come back and talk as much as you like.