whats usual re parties?

(86 Posts)
JumpingJackSprat Wed 17-Apr-13 12:56:56

Dss lives with his mum a 4 hour round trip away atvthe moment we have him every other weekend. his mum has accepted a party invite for sunday afternoon which means that rather than leaving ours at 5pm to take him back we will have to leave at 12.30 when we havent seen him for 2 weeks. is it unreasonable for us to say that dss wont be able to attend birthday parties on access weekends unless theyre actual friends? My understanding is that this party is a "whole class" affair. Dss is 5.

NotaDisneyMum Mon 22-Apr-13 09:55:50

I know it isn't the same for all NRPs but my ex certainly wouldn't swap roles with me if I gave him the chance - it's too much like hard work!

That's not the case in the situations described here though, isn't it? In most of the cases described, the RP refuses to "allow" the NRP to play a more equal role in the DC's life, and at the same time, insists that the DC's time with the NRP is reduced further by prioritising the DC's activities such as parties and clubs above the DC's time with their NRP.

If a DC witnesses one parent placing a low priority on the (often very limited) contact that they have with their other parent, this influences the value that the DC places on that contact themselves. Like the RP, they begin the believe it's not important or valuable, and are comfortable with ever-diminishing contact, "after all, the RP thinks that school friends parties are more important". It's only later in life they may realise what they missed out on - and if they are lucky enough to have the chance, they may be able to build a relationship with their parent then.
In my opinion, there is nothing more important than the chance for a DC to understand the value of a relationship with their parent.

balia Mon 22-Apr-13 18:08:40

Excellent post, NADM, exactly what I was clumsily trying to express. The 600 hours thing - that's just basic hours in a day (over a 4 week period) for the purpose of showing the ratio of time and how unbalanced it is. You can chose any way of measuring you like - so long as you apply the same criteria to time at Dad's/NRP's because DC's sleep when they come to the other parent's house too, you know, and need meals preparing and putting in the bath and clothes washing and shoes finding and taking to sporting activities and shopping to do and all the other ordinary stuff life is made of. Most Dad don't or can't live in a bubble and clear the decks totally when DC's come over - and if they did it would be Disney parenting and hardly healthy for the DC anyway!

Petal02 Mon 22-Apr-13 19:31:09

I take your point Balia, but should point out that lots of non-resident Dads DO clear the decks (excellent expression) and create a bubble-like existence for their children!

balia Mon 22-Apr-13 19:50:18

Well in fairness I would be tempted to as well, if I only saw my DC's for such a small amount of time.

NotaDisneyMum Mon 22-Apr-13 19:55:43

And a lot of RP expect the NRP to do so, and complain bitterly when they don't!

Petal02 Mon 22-Apr-13 20:03:33

Disney parenting need a thread all if its own!!!!

willyoulistentome Mon 22-Apr-13 20:21:10

..so a random party invitation is one thing. Sorry to lead the conversation slightly off track, but what do you intend to do when DSS says he wants to join a weekend football club at home?
Just wondering what folks have done/would do about that? Years ago my DH wanted to enrol his son in OUR local rugby club, but it was pointless as he would never get picked due to missing EOW. Same would apply at the Mums end - 90 mins away. Neither would budge on access rights, so sporty DSS could never do any weekend sport.

allnewtaketwo Mon 22-Apr-13 20:37:09

That's pretty sad willyoulisten, and hardly in the best interests of the child

Petal02 Mon 22-Apr-13 20:38:29

Willy, I think the strict adherence to the access rota is 90% to blame for DSS18's "failure to launch." Access rota came first, life/development/normality was not a priority.

willyoulistentome Mon 22-Apr-13 20:55:56

Yes - it is pretty sad. My DSS is also 18 now, and stopped coming EOW at about the age 14 when the older two girls also started wanting to go out at the weekend with their mates instead of coming to see us. I think you do need to let the kids have say iin what they want to do at weekends, where reasonably possible.

allnewtaketwo Mon 22-Apr-13 20:59:46

Yes, and I think it needs to start early enough before it the rota is so engrained that it is no longer questioned. For example if a 14 yo is adhering to the rota to the letter and has no social life, it's a bid red warning signal. One I tried to point out but was ignored. We're seeing the effects now 3 years on from that with no end in sight. The rota still rules.

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