Alex's Answer

Uncomfortable with dad in car

Your Question

My dad once in a while when I am in the front seat of the car puts his hand on my thigh. It’s always when no other woman are around and I screamed at him to move his hand and he did for a sec then put it back. He always does this in a playful way and I never know if he is doing it in a bad way or not. It’s been happening ever since I can remember. Is the a normal thing to happen? I have no clue if I should tell someone or not. it just scares me sometimes.

Answer

Hello there, welcome to Ask Alex!

Thank you for reaching out and sharing what’s been happening with you. It’s really brave of you to talk about something that’s been troubling you. It’s important to remember that your feelings are valid, and you have the right to feel safe and comfortable at all times.
 
When it comes to personal boundaries, everyone has their own comfort levels, and it’s crucial that these boundaries are respected, especially by family members. Your dad’s behaviour has made you uncomfortable, and it’s ok to acknowledge that. It’s not typical for someone to touch another person in a way that makes them feel uneasy, even if it’s presented as playful. Your comfort and feelings are what matter the most here.
 
Consider having a calm conversation with your dad about how this behaviour makes you feel. You might say something like, “Dad, when you put your hand on my thigh, it makes me uncomfortable. Please stop.” Clear communication can sometimes help people understand the impact of their actions. However, if you feel unsafe or the behaviour continues despite your efforts, it’s important to reach out to a trusted adult, such as a teacher, school counsellor, or family friend.
 
Your safety and peace of mind are paramount. If this situation continues to upset you or you’re unsure about what to do next, speaking to someone who can offer additional support is a good step. You have every right to get help and ensure your personal boundaries are respected.
 
You may find these articles helpful:
These are just 2 articles which may help you, and there are many more available also.
 
Remember, you can always contact us at Childline by freephone 1800 66 66 66 or Messenger at www.childline.ie (just click on the purple chat icon). We are confidential, non-judgmental, and open 24/7. We’re here for you for any reason, anytime.
 
Take care of yourself, and we hope you feel safer real soon,
Alex

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