How do I explain divorce when DH won't engage?

(9 Posts)
Judgeybear Thu 02-Jun-16 22:51:15

After years of being in a toxic marriage I finally saw a lawyer and sent a letter to DH. It wasn't a surprise to him - he's been goading me to do it for years and he wouldn't talk to me about any of it. There was a massive scene with him throwing stuff into a bag and shouting at me and telling our (admittedly difficult) DD it was all her fault then storming out. DD (12) was prepared for it, DS(8) doesn't know what on earth is going on, everyone is frightened and confused. DH won't talk to me so the prospect of us showing a united front to DD and DS is nil, I've talked to DD in advance and since and she's devastated because she loves him even though he was bike to her, but she understands I think. I don't know how to approach DS - he's used to DH being away on work for periods of time so hasn't really got any of this. What do I say when I suspect DH will not take a neutral line for the sake of the children? Grateful for any advice - I can't seem to think straight at the moment!

Lemond1fficult Thu 02-Jun-16 23:57:25

He sounds like a horrible and immature husband and father. It also sounds as if his behaviour might have explained why you're divorcing him. flowers

Maybe tell ds that his dad wasn't kind to you or dd, so you've asked him to leave. You don't have to put up with someone being unkind to you - that's a good example for both your children.

You're bound to be confused, but you've taken the first step to being okay again. It sounds as if you're well shot of him.

MrsUniverse Fri 03-Jun-16 02:35:12

I'm sorry but don't tell your DS that dad left because he was mean to DD. That's still laying the blame at her feet. It's an awful position you find yourself in but saying that you don't love each other anymore and that neither of you were happy, then reassuring your children that you still love them, might be cliché but it's better than blaming yourself. Or worse your DD. As for blaming him, you absolutely could and I wouldn't fault you for it, but is it best?

Hissy Fri 03-Jun-16 08:10:59

Your dd is 12, they will have or will be learning about abusive relationships is school.

Read up on the kind of information aimed at school children and talk her through it.

You could be literally saving her life.

Women who grow up with controlling/abusive parents can go on to emulate the imbalance in their own lives.

Your dd may become a lot less difficult when he's out of the house.

Make sure this bully fucks the fuck off and keep contact between him and the Dc to as much of a minimum as you can.

Hissy Fri 03-Jun-16 08:14:03

Sorry, thought it was dd you needed help with

Talk to ds and tell him the same, that some men don't like women and can't be kind to them. Explain that this is not the way a man behaves and that he may have stomped off out, but he has to go regardless.

You don't want him growing up emulating it admiring this prick.

My ds was 5, I was telling him and he said to me, is it because daddy shouts at mummy?

Your 8 yo can handle it. He has to. Give him little info and answer the questions he has.

Laiste Fri 03-Jun-16 08:21:27

Children are 12 and 8, OK. That's grown up enough for a good chat.

It's hard to put briefly, but my advice would be to talk to them together soon, at a time and place where you have all the time you need. Begin by telling them that none of this between you and their father is their fault AT ALL. Let them ask questions. Let them know they can ask any question they like and you will try to answer. Let them know the three of you can all talk about this again if they need or want to.

Try hard to present the answers about your relationship as two people who are not getting on rather than focusing on 'fault', but do it if you can. Tell them that they will be loved no matter what. It's very hard, but if you can be the adult who is approachable and not bitter and full of anger about the situation then they will have someone to talk to, and wont bottle stuff up. In time they'll see the whole picture clearly - you don't have to spell it out for them. (ie their dad is an arse)

branofthemist Fri 03-Jun-16 08:28:39

Sit him down and talk to him. You can stay neutral even if your H doesn't.

Don't get drawn in by your H into assigning blame or getting their with the truth first.

I know it's tempting when the other one is throwing blame about. But don't you pull your kids into 'he said, she said'.

branofthemist Fri 03-Jun-16 08:29:10

Or getting in there blush

Judgeybear Fri 03-Jun-16 23:05:12

Thanks so much everyone - great advice.

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