A few years in with chaotic contact and I'm still regularly in tears when the children are with their dad.
Always seemingly having a better time more treats big presents for special occasions and a series of daddy's girlfriends keen that they have the best time, who are often younger, slimmer, prettier, better off and perhaps less exhausted than me! Plus they then enjoy time with my husband, without the distractions of children luxury hotels, weekends away and holidays.
I work full time manage the children often on my own with no planned me time, i have stayed generally amicable letting a lot go, always pleasant in front of the children hes always going to be more reliable, my husband cancels and rearranges contact regularly, I'm the fall back he's often 'working' sometimes I know he isn't.
I now know there were affairs long before I'd even suspected, guilty he should be, but it's me that can feel outdone and excluded from my own childrens lives, has anyone come through something similar.
I felt exactly the same! They don’t know what the ex is really like though...we do!
I have worked out that what you are told by children is different to what they feel/ actually happens.
It’s best to remember ex as the hateful evil person it was and pity the poor latest woman who has got involved.
The latest one I recently pitied turned out to be as evil as him and reported his children to social services as malnourished, as him looking after them at weekends didn’t fit in with their social lives? Unbelievable!
Put them out of your mind, do your best for your children with their time with you. Childhood is short.
My children have a brilliant relationship with me. I provide stability, a home, clean ironed clothes, school stuff paid for and done, on top of all their lives as well as my own.
They also seem to have a good relationship with their Dad, who can’t do any of the above, just introduce new women “Daddy has had lots of girlfriends”
I don’t care, I can do life on my own and provide and look after my children on my own, and this is what I will do and continue to do.
Stress less about what is flaunted and know that you are the better person.
You sound worn out, how about you plan some me time for next time the children are with their Dad, it doesn't have to be expensive I've spent some very enjoyable afternoons in bed with tea, scones and the TV on to provide distraction. My children were adults when ex and I separated so I didn't have to be involved in their contact with him and the less they told me about what he was up to the better I coped, try and let it go over your head. It's best that your children see their Dad and they will in time appreciate all you've done to keep their lives orderly so keep on doing what you are doing but try to factor in some rewards for you for everything you do.
Thankyou Under60 and Clawed you are both right, I am exhausted and things are probably not always as they seem with daddy, the eldest has already said a few things.
I too provide the stability for my children to make up for the daddy chaos and I've never tried to replace him as daddy, when he is being daddy he does it really well.
I feel sorry for the women he's cheating on now and wish I'd realised sooner as I'm scared to try again, or trust anyone but am mostly pretty good on my own, maybe one day.
Hi there. I'm almost two years divorced and two and a half years into dealing with the absence of my children, when they stay with 'the other mother' (I was in a same sex relationship - the children are genetically mine).
It's hard. I went through a lot at the time. Discovering an affair. Losing her, the emotional abuse that then ensued etc. financial difficulties etc, etc.
But this far on, the only one that still truly gets me down is the being without my children.
I suffer the same as you, I imagine. I want to be with my children all the time - so I lose. She stated that the children were one reason for her to leave, we spent too much time with them and not with each other - selfish cow but hey ho. So she gets what she wants - part time parenting - so she wins. This is how it feels.
I suffer with a feeling of 'competition. she has more money than me, and is buy, spend, buy, spend. And I can't compete with that. I have to listen when they talk about 'the other woman', their upcoming wedding, the bigger house, ex-in-law family members, who now just blank me. It hurts. And more than anything - I MISS THEM WHEN THEY ARE AWAY SO MUCH IT PHYSICALLY HURTS.
How I cope?
1. Sometimes I don't. This is important to note. Sometimes I get sad. And that's ok. As long as it doesn't get overwhelming why not have a little cry every now and then.
2. I make sure I'm doing stuff when they are away that I couldn't do with them. If I do things we could do together I feel sad, so i avoid those things. Eg. But I like to walk. If I'm on a 10 mile walk I can appreciate the freedom of hobbies long lost that I can now enjoy. I can on a whim pop to watch an 18 movie. etc etc
3. I remember that however they may paint it to the outside world she is most likely not happy all the time either. Because nobody is! I lived with her for 15 years. She's moody, lazy, and difficult. She won't have changed.
4. I rely and trust the wise-ness of my children. They are growing up (now nearly 9). They are beginning to understand what happened and seem not impressed. They get money thrown at them, yet still come home on a Sunday and says its their favourite day because I play with them. Don't get me wrong, I feel they need to have a relationship with her, and I suffer in making it so. My hope. That as young people and then adults I can retain their respect. I did what I could, and did what I believed was best, and they can and prob will judge her by the same standard and she will come up short. But I see its my job is to let them come to their OWN conclusions, whatever they may be, not try to make up their minds for them.
Divorce is terrible. Its hard to see the good side when the kids are away. But, when I have the freedom to pop out this evening to the theatre for instance I remember that though the children matter the most in all this, I also matter. And I am allowed to enjoy some me time.
Go find something that is just yours and enjoy it in that moment. He'll get his. Karma has a long arm.
I'm in the same boat as Krazy, except I worked full time and my wife didn't. Therefore she got residence of the kids (5,5 and 3). Although I do have a routine to see them it's never going to be the same as seeing their little faces every day. Not helped by the ex stopping any extra contact...except for when it suits her of course!! I try and keep busy with running and going to the gym, I should try and get out and meet people but I honestly can't face starting again after everything that has happened over the last year. Karma will bite back and as long as it doesn't affect the children as they are my one and only priority now!! Everyone tells me time will heal!!!
I'm sorry everyone is finding the contact so hard. I'm experiencing a totally different angle.
My children were 16 and 13 when the ex left. Next week it will be two years since he's seen our soon to be 16 year old daughter. He's seen our now 18 year old son 4 times. The effect on them has been heartbreaking to see. My lovely girl's self esteem has hit rock bottom and she is having counselling for self harm and depression, because she still loves and misses her dad. My son's just gone off to University and is brilliant but cynical as hell, and vows to have nothing more to do with his father. But the three of us are all incredibly close and have survived two awful years of uncertainty and stress and downright cruelty to me. I would never in a million years have imagined this was how my ex husband would behave. I think I will never truly accept or understand it.
So I guess my point is, however difficult it is to deal with the kids having contact with your ex partners, you are all doing so well, because you are putting the kids first. It's still got to be the best thing for them, because the alternative is fairly horrible too. Give yourselves a break and a huge pat on the back.