Mild Panic! I've agreed to drop off DSS on NYE alone.(9 Posts)
That sounds like a plan. No longer convo needed, just hi xw, ok, dss, have a fab time, see you soon, and wave. You can say a proper goodbye in the car as you get there, as he might be a bit split in the car anyway. And why can't you do the lunch box idea for the journey anyway, will help him relax
Ooops sorry - I read that you were picking up not dropping off hence the packed lunch suggestion! My bad....
Thank you ladies, I will keep it brief and I won't say anything unless she breaks the silence first. DSS will be 11 so no hugs necessary, I will say goodbye in the car and let him say goodbye to his baby sister (if he wants to) before we go over to his mums car. I am sure all 3 of us are going to be nervous as hell.
I don't really want to start texting her, DSS has his own phone so he can let his mum know our progress etc, which is what he currently does when DH takes him to drop off. I don't want her to start using me as go between, as those 2 really need to learn to communicate better for sake of DSS.
I will leave DD in the car unless we end parked far apart or she is awake and irritable and therefore Im not leaving her on her own. Thus giving perfect excuse to zoom back over to the car and make my getaway.
I agree with the others, keep it brief - don't try to be her friend, just treat the situation as if you are a friend of a friend. She does not know you so don't let her judge you. In fairness she is probably panicking about it as much as you.
I often found that it was a lot more civil when I dropped Kids off than when ex did?!?
I always give kids a kiss and a hug before we get in the car because they feel uncomfortable doing it in front of their mom - that way it takes the pressure away from them and they know I don't think any less of them for it
I'd be polite, make it brief, and if possibly leave your baby in the car. Waving around a cute baby that is her ex's and not hers will only make any jelousy worse.
I wouldn't even bother introducing yourself unless she initiates that. After all, you've at least volunteered (bravely!) to do the drop off - she's had no choice in it being you, so if she's not wanting to meet you yet, then let her decide whether to initiate any further conversation, or not.
And say whatever goodbyes, when you'll see him next, etc you need to DSS beforehand so there's nothing more you really need to say in front of his mum.
the drop off doesn't need to be a long thing. i'm thinking literally something along the lines of,
"hi DH's ex, how you doing? (i'm in ireland and we say how you doing as a greeting rather than a question we want an answer to so this may not work if it isn't commonly used where you are) it's freezing isn't it/it's not too cold today, thank goodness. OK DSS have a great time at the party we'll see you soon <hugs>? (does he do hugs with you?), bye" <get in car and go.
very quick. a minute tops. i wouldn't go down the route of introducing yourself if you think she will be hostile as it gives an opportunity for her to snub your outstretched hand and makes an awkward interaction where it can be avoided.
my DC's stepmum texted me from her own phone a really nice message before we had properly met just saying that the dcs were welcome at her house anytime even when EXP wasn't there and that if i ever needed her to have them that was no problem. i know for some that might be overstepping the mark but i really appreciated it. it sort of broke the ice as i really had no clue how she felt about me. not sure if a text like along those lines would be appropriate in your situation. maybe you could text saying "hi DH's ex, it's HKnight, i'm just texting to confirm i'm meeting you at X service station on NYE morning at X time for drop off. any change of plan just let me or DH know. see you then.
I'd just be polite, avoid any meaningful conversation and drive off as fast as you reasonably can while still keeping it as relaxed as possible for your SS.
Have an excuse about why you have to leave quickly at the tip of your tongue in case she does start any kind of confrontation or 'deep and meaningful' and have something in the car to distract SS if it does get awkward. You don't say how old DSS is but maybe a magazine and a packed lunch (mine find being given a lunch box terribly exciting and can't wait to get it open to see what's inside)! As it's Christmas maybe put a cracker and a party hat in. (Again, I'm assuming your DSS is a child, this would probably not go down so well with an adolescent)!
Don't feel intimidated about her being older than you - you're not a teenager and she has no basis for looking down at you for being 'a first time Mum in your early thirties' - that's a perfectly sensible age to be a first time Mum
Personally I wouldn't draw attention to your baby - I'd just leave him / her in his carseat. My DH's ex tried to pick my babies up a few times and would coo over them even though I knew she'd been telling people they were really ugly behind my back so that always made me feel super-uncomfortable. In fact occasionally I remember I even put the raincover over the pram so she couldn't get to them / see them very well.
Yeah in short I'd try and come across as happy, relaxed, competent, confident and purposeful. That's not a tall order at all is it?!! Good luck!
sorry I forgot to add we are collecting DSS on his birthday so he only gets half day with DH side of family.
To cut a long story short, DH and his ex can't agree on birthday and xmas contact (close to each other and DH hasnt spent either with DSS for 3 years), I've agreed to do the drop-off on NYE morning at a motorway services. This has to be the day because of a family birthday on the DSS side, and because DH has to work. DSS has indicated he would like to spend either his birthday or Xmas with us, and although ex wife has DSS for Xmas she won't let DH have him for whole of his birthday (or the other way round). The distance between our homes means we can't split each day in half. DH is pursuing mediation but is too late for this year.
So I decided to just offer to do the driving so DH and the in-laws could see his son (DH cant get time off NYE).
I have only met her twice, at the FDR hearing and when DH had to collect some items from FMH. We were never introduced. I am 16 years younger than her, and she criticises to my DH about things, in her correspondence to DH solictior she is very critical about us. I think because of my age and being first time mum (I am early 30's). I want to show her I am confident, willing to be civil and I am prepared to do best for DSS, but not come across as 'I am better than you/I hate you.' She has a hold over my DH but with my insistance he has started to stand up to her, I won't let her tell us what to do with our own home/baby/money/car/holidays/DH time with DSS. Ex wife must know I am pushing DH to stick up for himself, becuase I have only been on scene for 15 months and they separated 3 years ago.
Has anyone got any tips? I am assuming she hates my guts, but is this likely? Should I introduce myself to her, or wait for her to do it? Things to avoid saying? I will have my baby with me which may or may not make things worse. I really am over analysing this I know, but I am acutely aware that if I don't get the first impression right I could be making things harder in long run.
Sorry I've been putting a lot of posts on Mumsnet recently but what with DH trying to resolve contact via sols and now mediation, it's starting to take over my sense of perspective and is a little bit stressful. You lot are full of wonderful advice. I think once an agreement is reached I can detach emotionally, but it is the not knowing what is to be expected in the future which is hard to deal with. Once there is an agreement then DH can plan holidays around it and I wont have to get involved.
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