Dear Someone I used to know You may call this a passive aggressive communication or complain to your solicitor. Go ahead but I'm not drunk nor lashing out which is the only way that you have made contact with me in the last 18 months from which I have needed protection. Am I calling you a w........ here. No. I am writing because I am concerned about your lack of contact with the girls. Yes you message them on Facebook, send them the odd text but I think you should have more direct contact time. Try, I know it's hard for you, to put yourself into their shoes. You could FaceTime them, Skype with them and certainly phone them. I think it's sad that you prfioritize the ow over them every time. You come to our town and don't tell them. You had to tell our elder daughter last time because I saw you when you drove past the house. How shoddy was that. This affects their self-esteem where they don't feel worth much. So you spent both your birthdays with the ow, Xmas in a country hotel, all your holidays with the ow. The girls were upset about not seeing you on Boxing Day. You gave some cock and bull story but were actually up in town just before with the ow. I wonder how her daughters are feeling. Similar I imagine. Yes you have given them the odd weekend but you could have invited them down for a few days this Summer not just a proxy weekend. Of course I understand that the ow lives with you so where will she go. You don't have to take them out for meals, just do simple things. Anyway all in all, I have been disappointed in your self-serving behaviour and actually a little surprised. I just cannot understand why you haven't come to town on your own and invited the girls out and round to their Grandma's.. You know very well that you could orchestrate this. It must serve some purpose for you to keep the rift going or it's co-dependency. Yes you will see our younger daughter more in the Autumn as she is going to uni in your town but there is still our elder daughter. She is very sad that you have never visited her at uni. It's money you tell her but come on...you have driven all over the UK with the ow, visiting her relatives. The ow is simply someone you have known for just over a year yet you give her everything.
Thank you wikis for putting things into perspective and your empathy. I would say that this has been one of the worst aspects of our divorce. I so didn't want things to turn out like this. Teecher, I remember reading some of your blogs on this matter last year and I was staggered by your ex's behaviour. I didn't realise you still had a 10 year old at home. I am shocked yet this year I can see how possible it is. Vastra, you define what's going on so well. It must be easier for them to cling to their rewrites of history without the evidence staring them in the face and the new partner may not be too keen. Vastra, I know you have been experiencing something similar and it's much more in your face. It's so damn sad. The children have us though. Sometimes I think that I am deliberately staying single so that my daughters don't have to contend with an om. I'm not saying this is right but I'm worried about having my own infantile midlife crisis. They are both going to uni in September which will make this easier for me if I'm up to it.
I'm sorry to hear your STBX is continuing to be so hurtful and thoughtless towards your girls. We all share the pain of seeing our kids dropped as our partners run off with their lovers, and sometimes end up spending more time and energy with a new set of children. I agree with the others, it's probably because their own kids are inconvenient guilt-provoking reminders of their first family. Guilt is not fun, and these creatures are all about escaping uncomfortable feelings and making sure Number One is enjoying him or herself. It's one thing to treat your spouse shabbily, but to hurt or ignore your kids really shows up their character in a very ugly light. Shame on him, you and your daughters deserved a lot better than this.
I think teecher is right - they can't face up to themselves so avoid anything that might mean they have to. It's as though they've never grown out of the playground 'it wasn't me' claim. It was rubbish then, and it still is.
Sadly your ex is not unique- his lack of contact with his daughters mirrors exactly what is happening in my family, too.
My ex husband salved his conscience by saying that his kids were grown up and needed to live their own lives (conveniently forgetting that his youngest daughter was only 10 at the time.)
My theory is that seeing their families makes them uncomfortable because it means that they have to face the extreme hurt that they have caused and being cowards as well as cheats they just can't do it.
It helps to realise that these people are damaged and therefore no great loss.
Continue to be there for your daughters and reassure them that they are not the problem- he is.