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To feel so upset regarding contact.

(1000 Posts)

Some of you may know my backstory from the nature of my post. I namechanged a while ago and have been trying to put the past behind me and move forward with 5mo DD.
Me and my ex have a rather volatile relationship. He didn't want me to keep DD. since she has been born he hasn't provided physically or emotionally. He pays half the maintainence he should.
I tried to keep him seeing DD, him coming here, me there (2.5 hour drive). Supervised by me.
I don't want or agree with any child been taken away from their father but he is so inconsistent and to put it bluntly useless it had crossed my mind that it may be better if he goes away.
He has had a new girlfriend who seems to have taken priority since when I was 5 months pregnant.
It's now 22 days since any contact with him. He's ignored my attempts to send pictures and updates and is like to know if I am BU by thinking this is not acceptable and letting it upset me.
I'm a bit of a wreck today. I know this is AIBU but please try to be gentle.

GregBishopsBottomBitch Mon 11-Feb-13 20:48:48

Your the mum, the RP, you make the rules, what you say goes, if they dont like it, then they can only blame themselves.

I would get this official, so he cant play silly twunts.

I said Thursday is fine.
We start arranging details, he scares me about his parents.
I mention mum is going. No reply.
So now all I am going to bed knowing is Thursday!!

SoftKittyWarmKitty Mon 11-Feb-13 21:30:32

Just make sure you're mum, at least, is going. When you make the arrangements make them for somewhere you and your DD will be comfortable such as a nice cafe or soft play. Don't have them to the house because if you want to end the visit you can't leave - you have to get them to leave. Don't leave your DD alone with him/them because this is a supervised visit, as offered by you several times, so don't let them pressure you into deviating from this.

This visit has to be on your terms, not his/theirs. You hold the power, you call the shots.

I don't think he will contact me now until the eve of day before. Now he knows mum is coming.

anonacfr Mon 11-Feb-13 22:46:03

Just to be on the safe side is there any way you could have someone else there as well- to keep tabs of how things are going?

Remember your rules. He doesn't like it, visit off!

flow4 Mon 11-Feb-13 23:47:11

Make, I know you don't feel like it at all, but you have the power and control in this situation:

- You have your daughter.
- You decide where to meet - definitely in a public, neutral place (like a soft play place)
- You bring whoever you like with you - at least your mum - don't meet him alone.
- He has suggested a day and time - but you can say no if it doesn't suit (but only say no if it really doesn't suit, not to 'play games')

With hindsight, I can see that my DS's dad felt quite powerless and a lot of his arseyness and nastiness was a reaction to this - attempts to make himself feel better. I'd bet good money that your Ex feels the same. It might help to bear this in mind when you're dealing with him...

It's ironic really: we feel powerless and vulnerable... And they do too!

I'm not sure who else could come but
I feel safe with mum.
Since I said mum was coming he hasn't answered so do I send a text saying 'is x time and place okay?' Or do I ignore it and let him wind me up by emailing the night before?

flow4 Tue 12-Feb-13 08:34:42

Ideally, you ignore it and don't let him wind you up the night before! grin

If you text him that Q, you are giving him another (perhaps bigger) opportunity to wind you up again, by not answering.

If you really, really feel you need to send something, try "Ok then, X time, Y place. Pls confirm by end of today".

Don't ask Qs, don't explain, don't mention your mum or give unnecessary details. Detach! smile

Be prepared for the fact that he still may not answer. If he doesn't confirm, you're free to make other arrangements, if anything else comes up. smile

Thank you flow.
I know he's doing it on purpose. I just do not get the point, that's not really thinking of DD. it's trying to get to me, it's not about me it's about DD!

flow4 Tue 12-Feb-13 09:46:31

I know. It makes no sense. Or at least it makes no sense to any sensible person!

Detach, detach, detach! Remember you cannot control how he behaves: if he's an arse, there is nothing you can do about it. But you can control your reactions : you can learn to say to yourself "Oh, he's trying to wind me up there. Silly man. Well, that's not going to work!"

IMO, he's fighting to assert himself because he feels out of control, and though it feels like he's trying to get at you, really it's not about you or your DD, it's all about him. Emotionally, he is behaving rather like a spoilt child who wants the toy, and you are the mean grown-up (or just the glass cabinet hmm ) who is stopping him from having what he wants. He is not thinking of your DD as some one, but as some thing. He might - just - be thinking of you as some one, but you're someone who is stopping him from having what he wants. And even worse, wink he thought you were someone who was no problem, someone he could boss about, someone who would do whatever he wanted - but now you're standing up to him, and he finds that confusing and infuriating!

So, this week... Make your plan. Decide how the visit needs to be/go for your DD to enjoy it, and for you to stand it. Discuss it all with your mum. Stick to it. If he emails you a load of unnecessary detail and orders and rudeness today or tomorrow, just ignore him. If he says "This is going to happen" or "That isn't going to happen", just ignore it. It's just noise!

You must focus on detaching and not reacting to his bad behaviour, because the chances are, he is going to behave badly for a lonnnng time. hmm There is nothing that you can do that will make him behave better; he has to make himself... And meanwhile, you just have to tap your fingers and twiddle your thumbs and wait for him to grow up stay calm and look after your DD and yourself.

anonacfr Tue 12-Feb-13 09:53:45

Exactly. Just say 'this time/place works for us, see you then' and then leave it. Don't ask him if it's ok, if he really genuinely wanted to see his daughter nothing would stop him.
If he comes up with shitty 'I can't make it' arguments then tell him what a shame let's re-arrange at a later date and leave it at that.

Be strong!!!!

Well I've still not heard a thing so if I haven't heard by say 7pm I'm assuming they won't want to meet halfway (see what I did-I offered to show I'm reasonable) I shall text mother and email son saying x time x place with the postcode of the place

Sound okay?

bunchamunchycrunchycarrots Tue 12-Feb-13 13:02:44

Remember to add something requiring their agreement or acknowledgement so if they fail to agree by say tomorrow or 9pm tonight you make alternative arrangements. Keeps you right and means your mum isn't kept hanging as well as you.

Exactly wink

flow4 Tue 12-Feb-13 13:18:15

Yes, so long as the place you choose is local to you and somewhere you would enjoy visiting with DD anyway, because I'm afraid there is a chance he won't turn up. (This seems to be part of the 'pattern'; I lost count of the times DS's dad didn't turn up or broke/changed arrangements).

If I were you, I wouldn't put too much energy into trying to show/prove you're reasonable. For a start, you are being reasonable - you don't need to prove it. But also nothing you do will satisfy him (IMO because fundamentally he wants total control and he doesn't/can't have it) - and you'll be left feeling even worse when you've bent over backwards to be helpful, and he's still angry and dissatisfied.

It is beyond reasonable to travel all that way to meet a man who hasn't made any effort himself. If he was already making arrangements to see your son - if he had 'shown willing' at all - then it would be kind and reasonable to meet him half way. But doing it now is too much.

Tbh I'd stop making any offers for now. Let him do the running. If he makes a request, decide whether it suits your DD/you, and if not, then you can offer something slightly different that does. But for now, don't take the initiative... Once you know he really does want to see your DD, and isn't just playing games, then you can start to give more. Right now, you need to learn to give less!

Do you know what flow, I've always been that person the outgoing one. The one that does things to suit others, the one that's upset but says nothing, the one at everyone's beck and call.
No more.
They are both getting a message saying x place x time I'm not even asking if its suitable and you know if they don't turn up me and my mum will have a nice lunch!!
Now soft play or nice lunch/restaurant.
They will hate hate hate soft play and I can't see them playing with DD. so I'm thinking nice pub restaurant. There's a pub close to my home one of those table table ones or there is one on the beach (nice walk etc)
Also taking two cars so I can leave if it gets too much.

GregBishopsBottomBitch Tue 12-Feb-13 14:17:41

Make Good, trying to please these idiots gets you and your DD nothing anyway, state where your gonna be if they dont turn up, then you wont be offering again.

anonacfr Tue 12-Feb-13 14:18:46

Didn't he say he was coming to you? Pub lunch sounds perfect. I would avoid walk etc.
If they're no happy with the arrangement their loss.
If it does get too much by all means leave. Try not to stress waiting for an answer though. You know he'll wait to the last minute so that he can play his mind games.

He is coming this way but all I know right now since last night is X afternoon. Wonderful smile

I have tried making arrangements for X to arrange a place/book table etc with no feedback. Me, DD & mum will be at X at 3.30. I assume that shall suit everyone, the postcode is X. Confirmation would be good.

Is that ok?

SoftKittyWarmKitty Tue 12-Feb-13 16:48:36

It's good but 'confirmation would be good' is a bit wishy-washy, plus if you and your mum are going there anyway to eat (as you said previously) it doesn't matter a huge amount if he doesn't turn up, so I'd leave that bit out altogether and make it more direct. I also dont think the first sentence is necessary and might just serve to get his back up, which you don't want. Maybe tweak to something like: 'For your access visit on Thursday afternoon Me, DD & mum will be at X at 3.30 until 5pm (or whatever time you plan to leave). The postcode is x. See you there.'

SoftKittyWarmKitty Tue 12-Feb-13 16:53:20

Forgot to say the reason for putting a leaving time is two fold. One, it stops him from turning up half an hour after you give up and go home, then claiming you didn't turn up. Two, it tells him that at 5pm the access visit will end, so you can get DD home and ready for bed or whatever, so he doesn't throw a wobbler as you get up to leave. Time limits help each party know exactly where they stand.

anonacfr Tue 12-Feb-13 17:06:50

I would scrap the first sentence- he'll just say it sounds passive aggressive. Last is indeed wimpy.

Soft's message is perfect. Add the full address, maybe a 'see you then' and that's it.
If he then decides to throw a tantrum and tells you he can't make it after all just reply 'shame, give me a date that works for you and I will check to see if it is convenient for us'.

Let him do the work! You have gone through hell and are doing an amazing job looking after your little one. If he wants to stay in her life he has to do something. You've got enough on your plate.

Thanks kitty Got a rather blunt message back 'I will discuss it with twunt' twunts mum

ProphetOfDoom Tue 12-Feb-13 17:12:19

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

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