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AIBU to never make them go again?

(17 Posts)
EatMeSeymour Mon 17-Aug-15 21:58:39

Also posted in LP but posting here for traffic....and donning my flame proof suit...

Just received a message from eldest DC - 2DC are with XHB for 2 weeks.

Message reads: hi mummy, just wanted to say dad has been talking a load of crap about you again tonight and this is the last time we are coming here.

Background: DC1 (14) and DC2 (12) see their dad twice a year as he lives abroad. In between visits he skypes them sporadically and even lectures them during these calls instead of "spend time with them".

I can honestly say that I don't speak badly about him to the DC and try to be the peace maker, if you will, when they have a rant about him.

He continuously bad mouths me to them. No idea why he feels the need to as we have been separated 9 years, divorcd for 7 and he has remarried.

For the record, he has not paid any maintenance for over 2 years but I have said he needs to pay half of DC1's v expensivw school trip that I have already fully paid, so that may have set him off.

There is no contact order on place as we were divorced abroad and have since both moved to different countries complicated!!

Do I have to send the DC next time or are they considered old enough now to decide for themselves?

AIBU to never make them go again if they don't want to or would that make me a terrible mother?

Mrsmorton Mon 17-Aug-15 22:01:20

I think they can decide for themselves at that age. I wonder how is best to tell ex though? So he knows it's their decision and his behaviour that's helped them reach it...

Hmm. You have done so well in keeping the moral high ground OP.

Sirzy Mon 17-Aug-15 22:02:22

I think they are old enough to decide for themselves. I would say to them something like "I will never stop you going to see him but I am not going to force you to see him" and then send him a message saying the same and that you are leaving it to them.

Iliveinalighthousewiththeghost Mon 17-Aug-15 22:13:12

YNBU. He should be bloody demanded to pay maintenance but don't hold your breath. This government is only good at going after the RP. Yes I know he is abroad but I'm sure they could track him down if they really gave a shit.
Any way about your original question.
Your children have already decided that they don't want to go back there and it's good that you are respecting their wishes.
Your dcs are in another country without you and he is calling you. It is obviously very very uncomfortable for them. Your XH is not being a bit fair. Not only by calling the mother of his children but calling you when you're not there to defend yourself.
Clutching very tightly at staws here but he clearly hasn't moved on. Hence the need to talk about you. Could he still be harbouring feelings for you. Could it be resentment that you aren't together.

EatMeSeymour Mon 17-Aug-15 23:08:55

Hmmm interesting point Live.

He left me. For his secretary. The man is a walking cliché.

His parting words to me were "without me you are nothing and I will break you". I therefore think that any lingering resentment he has ia due to the fact he did NOT manage to break me. He came fucking close but not quite.

BlackeyedSusan Mon 17-Aug-15 23:21:18

I think they are old enough to make their own decision on the matter... check whether the 12 year old is unduly influenced by the older one.

Dowser Mon 17-Aug-15 23:31:27

I wouldn't want my children to go somewhere where they feel bloomin uncomfortable even if they are with their own father.

They are old enough now to make their own minds up.

WhyCantIuseTheNameIWant Mon 17-Aug-15 23:36:30

11 is the age uk courts generally consider the opinion of the child.

So, legally, no. You don't have to make them go and visit him.

But generally, people seem to think that contact with a rubbish parent is better than no contact.

Can you wait a few weeks after their visit, then ask them how they feel, when its not so fresh in their minds?

SolidGoldBrass Mon 17-Aug-15 23:38:46

Let them decide. There is fuck all he can do to you.

SaveMeBarry Mon 17-Aug-15 23:39:16

Well your ex sounds like a right prick! Not what you asked I know but thought I'd throw it out theregrin

Re the DC I would think they are absolutely old enough to decide for themselves. You've facilitated contact for years so can't be accused of alienating them, though of course it might suit him to throw that about. Respect their wishes and if it's really what they want I'd simply communicate that by email.

AcrossthePond55 Tue 18-Aug-15 01:32:08

I agree with saying that it is their decision, either way.

But I think I would 'table' any decision or discussion about future visits until after they've been home a bit. I'm sure it's been shit for them, but I think they need/deserve a 'cooling off period' to process all that's gone on. I think I'd say to them "It's up to you and I will support your decision no matter what it is, but let's give you a bit of time to relax and talk about it in a week or two". If they insist they aren't ever going back, I'd say that's fine, but to remember that no decision is written in stone.

He sounds like a Class A prick, though, and I'm sure your children are wise enough to know their own minds. You just don't want them to feel they've boxed themselves into a corner.

sleeponeday Tue 18-Aug-15 01:40:21

You don't have to legally, no. He'd need to go to court to obtain a contact order. And the court, given the ages of the kids, would want to ascertain their wishes and feelings. At that age, they would have a massive amount of say.

Otherwise, I second Across. Leave it in their hands, don't raise it yourself, but if/when they do just make it clear you love them, and will support either decision.

mimishimmi Tue 18-Aug-15 01:44:41

Why does he badmouth you if he left you? Why would he be interested in 'breaking you'? Egotistical jerk. Anyway, I'd just reply to the kids "It's completely up to you". I hope you are not paying to send them to him.

AcrossthePond55 Tue 18-Aug-15 02:05:09

As far as why he badmouths, that's simple. HE was the guilty party, but he must absolve himself from any guilt by painting EatMe as a shrew. Men like that are unable to accept any responsibility for their own actions and must always, always, blame someone else.

textfan Tue 18-Aug-15 02:19:31

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Atenco Tue 18-Aug-15 03:09:28

He sounds awful and your children are old enough to decide for themselves. That said, my dd never liked her father, he was hopeless when she was small and his attitude to her as a teenager was not at all endearing. Every now and then she would tell me she never wanted to see him again, but two or three months later she would be back in contact. From the age of twelve she seemed to feel the need for a father.

So rather than asking them if they want to cut off contact, just talk to them and tell them they can decide for themselves from now on.

EatMeSeymour Tue 18-Aug-15 07:04:25

Thank you for all your replies folds away flame proof suit

I will leave this completely up to them and indeed wait for them to raise the subject. And yes, I'm fully prepared for them to change their minds by the time the next holiday comes around!

Acrossthe pond you've got it exactly - nothing has ever been his fault and he wants the DC to fully believe he has a fucking halo dangling over his head. Sort of ties in with him still wanting the "Father Of The Year" award. Oh well.

Of course I'm biased but yes, he is a Class A prick. Still kicking myself for actually marrying the fucker grin

Luckily the DC are getting older now and are putting the puzzle pieces together in their own mind and draw their own conclusions.

The only "bad" thing I have ever saud about him to DC is that "no, we can't afford to do X now as dad has not paid me this month". I think they are old enough to hear that one.

Again, thank you for your replies. Feeling a bit better now about leaving it up to them and supporting their decision in this without being classed as "that horrible mother"! smile

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