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to worry that my kids will be damaged because daddy's never there?

(83 Posts)
ThoseArtisticTypes Fri 03-Dec-10 15:52:28

I am really fed up.

My kids dad is never around. He works all the hours under the sun, misses plays, parent's meetings, your kid is in trouble meetings and never talks or plays to the kids. He thinks being a good father is providing and therefore works like a dog to be the best "father" he can be. Everytime I talk to him about it he gets really upset as he adores the kids but he never outwardly shows it. I think he's the type of guy that because he loves you it should be obvious so never says it.

What pisses me off even more is that he never considers looking in the school calendar to see what the kids are doing and today, with the worst weather all week, he decided to leave at the same time he normally would to get home for an important event. It takes him two hours to get home normally, so guess what - he left two hours to get home. The event has had to be cancelled and everyone is upset plus we have messed other people about who were helping us to organise it.

I don't know what to do. Nothing changes and yet he is such a kind and gentle man and I cannot fault him in any way. I hate to think that my kids will grow up and say, "We never saw our dad", like those screwed up buggers you see on TV!

Anyway just letting off steam and cannot see an end to this. Oh and him changing jobs is not even negotiable,

Marne Fri 03-Dec-10 15:59:41

"I never saw my dad" ,i'm not sure if it has effected me, we are close now, i was allways 'daddys little girl' but hardly spent any time with him as he was allways working, when he did have spair time he would go fishing and i would tag along (i didn't really like fishing but wanted to spend time him). We never went without anything as he was earning a good wage to support his family.

I am just as close with him now as i am to my mum (who spent every day with us whilst dad worked).

I would be worried that it could effect you relationship with dh, i would find it hard if dh wasn't about enough to support me.

Mum2HarryandBen Fri 03-Dec-10 16:01:10

UABU, he could have gone off with ow, told lies about you, not want nothing to do with them and tell people it was because you did not allow him, try to get you out of your home and not want to give you any money!

He could be dead and you could be a widdow with all that entails.

He could have had a horrible accident and been brain damaged/physically disabled etc...

It is not an ideal situation you are in, there are a lot of people much worse off then you!

You need to communicate better with him, and look at your lives!

classydiva Fri 03-Dec-10 16:03:14

My c hildren never had a father at home at all ever.

My 17 year old tells me he never missed out because he had no dad living with us.

The fact that he earns what you eat, what you live in, and what you all wear matters more.

Surely to christ he does not choose to miss everything his children do.

How do you think he feels about it all?

tigitigi Fri 03-Dec-10 16:06:38

I really feel for your poor husband. He is working to put the clothes on your backs, the roof over your heads and food on the table.

Children have two parents and sometimes one will not be able to be there because they are suporting the family in another way. My dad worked all the hours god sent, sometimes I didn't see him for months but the money he earned kept us clothed fed and educated.

My DH often has to work very long hours and weekends (we live at work) and rarely sees the kids during the week, it breaks his heart but we both know he is doing it for the best and that if he did not we would be homeless and penniless, I admire both my father and husband for the sacrifices they make and the work that they do for the family.

Set up a chat every week with the family - what are we doing all week etc.

defineme Fri 03-Dec-10 16:08:46

I don't think it's unreasonable to expect a parent to parent.
I don't think it's unreasonable to expect a partner to communicate their love for you every now and then.
I think it's unreasonable to let loved ones down when something has been arranged with your full knowledge.

Worse did happen for me.
My dad was killed in an accident when I was 23.
I didn't know him really. I miss the dad I could have had rather than the one I did have.

I think you need to have big talks and lay it all out. Use the language of no blame'I feel like this when you...' 'It makes me feel....when you...' As opposed to you'You are a wanker when you do that.'
I would suggest relate tbh. You sound lonely and sad. It's not a good example to set your dc.
Is a good wage worth this emotional cost?

starmucks Fri 03-Dec-10 16:10:12

Maybe he's just being the best dad he can be. Not all men are great with kids, or even teenagers. My Dad was a shocker: never around, or grumpy, stressed and utterly disinterested when he was. None of us suffered in the long run, although I did think of him as a twat at the time. The other implication was that my siblings and I were, and still are, very close to my Mum who has practical saint status in our family. Now were all grown up with kids, my Dad's retired and a completely different person. Firstly he's actually interesting in engaging with us as adults, and more surprisingly he's much better with his granchildren than he ever was with us.

I know it's not ideal but you can't change people.

ThoseArtisticTypes Fri 03-Dec-10 16:12:11

But he never speaks to them when he is at home, he just watches TV all weekend or would rather talk to me than the kids. I think he gains more happiness and self-esteem from working than he does from having a family.

Mum2, how am I lucky that my husband doesn't lie or cheat? Everyone deserves not to be lied and cheated too - No?

And I wasn't feeling sorry for myself but for my kids.

bruxeur Fri 03-Dec-10 16:12:45

Poor fucker works his arse off and spends 4 hours a day commuting and you're having a go at him?

Why not get a job? And stop whining. Doesn't matter which one first.

defineme Fri 03-Dec-10 16:13:37

I'm not being flippant about earning a living by the way. I know how it is to need every penny. But I also know that being emotionally distant and not playing with your kids when you are there is really not on.
My dh is bloody shattered after work, as am I. We still talk to them, play with them. We still take turns to take time off for stuff.

I appreciate that some jobs don't work like that, but what about the not playing with them?

chandra Fri 03-Dec-10 16:13:56

I disagree with the rest, there is more to life than money. Being married to a workaholic is one of the most common reasons cited in divorce petitions.

Yes, my father was not around much when I was growing up, but back then that was pretty much the norm. Nowadays dads are very hands on and participate more in children activities than our parents did, I wouldn't be happy with someone who apart of putting food on the table for us, leaves me with the full responsibility of raising the children on my own.

That's not such a good parent, sorry.

Niceguy2 Fri 03-Dec-10 16:14:50

I think YABU

What is it you expect from him? Can he simply pop off earlier? Esp in the current weather where most people are not even trying to go in, so those who are in the office are left to work even harder.

You could have a man who doesn't bother with the kids or works hard! Trust me, there's plenty of those types out there.

OK, he's not around much but in the face of the biggest recession for some time the fact he's working hard and gainfully employed should count for a lot.

The 2 hour commute each way must be an absolute killer and I take my hat off to his dedication. I assume it must be a very decent salary to make that sort of commute worth the while. And from his point of view, he's doing a 4 hour commute per day plus a full days work yet his OH is moaning he's not around. What more is he supposed to do?

I can understand why you are disappointed today. But don't forget to be grateful for what he does do.

ThoseArtisticTypes Fri 03-Dec-10 16:15:31

OH does not commute 4 hours a day as he lives in London Monday-Friday and has plenty free time to himself in the evening. Because of this I feel he should make an extra effort to come to their events and not ignore them all weekend.

chandra Fri 03-Dec-10 16:16:01

Get a job that may pay a bit less but allows him to see his kids?

bruxeur Fri 03-Dec-10 16:16:36

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bruxeur Fri 03-Dec-10 16:16:41

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bruxeur Fri 03-Dec-10 16:16:49

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ThoseArtisticTypes Fri 03-Dec-10 16:18:20

You are a pleasant person Bruxeur. hmm

motherinferior Fri 03-Dec-10 16:18:47

YANBU to be upset. He just sounds...not very interested in them. And saying Ah That Is Because He Has A Penis is rather missing the point imo.

He won't damage them, but I can't see why they'd like him. He's not exactly going about things in a way that'll build a decent ongoing relationship with them.

Niceguy2 Fri 03-Dec-10 16:19:47

Chandra, yes there's more to life than money....but presumably OP is happy living off the money he's slaving away to earn.

But what's the answer here? For him to give up his job? Get something closer to home? In the current climate?

TheCrackFox Fri 03-Dec-10 16:20:34

Actually, I think the OP has a point.

Yes, he does work hard but he also doesn't seem to speak to the DCs when he is at home. DH is a chef and works long hours but he manages to be very involved when he is at home.

"he adores the kids but he never outwardly shows it". Really, children need to be shown that they are loved - long hours or not.

mumbar Fri 03-Dec-10 16:21:18

YA & YANBU.
Many families have only one parent who does the 'school' stuff as the other works, some have 2 working parents and don't get assembly watchers, and some only have 1 active parent around who may/may not be able to attend if he/she works.

I think this is more about 'you' and him as opposed to the dc's. You want to see more of him, feel lonely etc.

Solutions:

a) can you move closer to his job?

b) can you take up a course/ hobby or something?

c)tell him you need to know your loved not just by material things.

BTW your children will be no more 'damaged' than my DS who hasn't seen his father since he was 2yo. hmm

defineme Fri 03-Dec-10 16:21:33

I have no idea why you're getting a kicking op.
My mate's dp works away all week and you know what he is a good dad too. He skpes them every night and knows what they're doing cos he asks them. He's on his phone to them all the time. He does his share of taking them to the park/football lessons whatever and cooks the sunday dinner.

It is not enough to earn the money.
I cannot believe that all these other posters think you can have a pass out of parenting cos you work hard.

How do you know the op doesn't have a job. Does being a sahm negate your right to a partner that does their share of parenting when they're at home?

I work til 2am some mornings and still find time for my kids-I don't expect a medal for it-it's what parents do.
She does not have to be grateful and she has a right to expect more from her coparent.

motherinferior Fri 03-Dec-10 16:21:35

FFS, having the odd chat with your kids occasionally isn't exactly impossible.

ThoseArtisticTypes Fri 03-Dec-10 16:23:37

I would be happy with him having a lower paid job but even when employment was good he wouldn't even consider it. I cannot currently work because of the kids ages and because he doesn't live here Monday-Friday which makes things logisitcally difficult. I have no skills so I would have a very poorly paid job and I don't think its worth shipping my kids off to nursery/childcare when they don't see one parent and he wouldn't change jobs just because I have one.

And this isn't about me. Why the posts about me feeling sorry for myself. I just care and worry about the kids - I didn't realise that was wrong! hmm

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