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To expect EXH to sort out his own Xmas present returns\exchanges

(55 Posts)
Pollyanna9 Tue 27-Dec-16 22:10:37

Right now, this second, I have just reached my limit of absorbing XHs pathetic apathetic SHIT useless 'fathering’ - you know how we have to let all this shit go 'for the kids' to 'keep the peace'? I've had enough.

DD had sports brand joggers for Xmas from her dad. They’re really big so she said to him can she return these and he order her a x and x size instead cos were not sure which of the smaller sizes will be right.

There is actually some urgency because she needs them for a school trip where for various reasons the clothing they are going to take has to be inspected at school in a coup!e of weeks.

He knew for over 2 months he might be getting made redundant but made no on the side savings to put aside some cash - just gave me 9 days notice AFTER he'd been made redundant that I'd have no child maintenance for the foreseeable - 3 weeks before Xmas.

His text back to DD: "Sorry can't afford to order these as I've got no money coming in. I'll give you the receipt and you can exchange them for a different size at the X shop".

Meaning he expects ME to take it back on my time at my expense on his behalf using my car and my petrol - why the SHOULD I!!! It's HIS Xmas present, his responsibility.

I have absolutely had it with this excuse of a man.

Might I add that instead of setting funds aside for his children, he's prioritised tiling his conservatory and bought a new sofa for it instead - and now I'm supposed to manage his bloody Christmas present returns as well?!!!

He's got this entitled, cavalier, condescending attitude that really, REALLY, gets up my nose.

Suitable responses?

ThisIsStartingToBoreMe Tue 27-Dec-16 22:13:43

I'd do it. Don't really see the problem. Is the shop a hundred miles away from your house? How old is your daughter?

Fishface77 Tue 27-Dec-16 22:22:07

I think you bu, you will however get people who ask why it's a problem. The problem is the ex should clean up his own messes and sort his own mistakes. This doesn't sound like a one of (sp) and he doesn't sound like a great loss.
Then you'll have cries of "do it for the children!" And you will but it's pissing annoying!

Fishface77 Tue 27-Dec-16 22:22:36

I DON'T think you are (that should read)

FatalKittehCharms Tue 27-Dec-16 22:23:37

YANBU. He should take DD to town.

What a dick he is for prioritising tiles and sofa over his children.

VimFuego101 Tue 27-Dec-16 22:30:44

It doesn't seem unreasonable to expect your DD to go to the shop and try on the replacement rather than ordering two different sizes. I suspect that this is just the straw that broke the camels back though.

woundedplacerias Tue 27-Dec-16 22:31:51

YANBU. You are the default parent and therefore the one who thinks things through and prioritises the dc, while he doesn't. You will obviously do it for your dd, but he should be grateful and it shouldn't be an expectation. My ex came round for most of Christmas day and ended up asking for a tenner so he could drive the dc as planned to his mother's on Boxing Day. WTF? He had plenty of opportunity to set aside this tenner, but no, he thought he'd tap me for it instead. He left a bag of 4 stupidly expensive Christmas cards he'd bought for his family to give them on Boxing Day - why? He'd obviously bought them on the 24th when he'd got the dc's presents. He could have paid for the petrol with that. These men are twats.

elodie2000 Tue 27-Dec-16 22:35:43

Oh just take her and swop them. Seriously, be the bigger person and help your DD out. She has to put up with her PITA dad after all.

YelloDraw Tue 27-Dec-16 22:38:19

Oh just take her and swop them. Seriously, be the bigger person and help your DD out

And I'm sure she will.

But it's bloody annoying to always be the one who think and sorts everything.

Why can't the ex just return them in his contact time?

cocobo Tue 27-Dec-16 22:41:11


Pollyanna9 Tue 27-Dec-16 22:43:10

I do, all the time Elodie. There is a limit.

I've just done my income and outgoings got January. I'm going to be £400 over by the start of Feb. I literally cannot have ANY expenditure that isn't absolutely necessary. That's not by choice. It's necessity.

I'm SICK of being treated like his fucking wife or his personal assistant.

CalleighDoodle Tue 27-Dec-16 22:51:26

If someone buys me a gift in the wrong size i would swap it myself. If theres a store in town it makes sense dd swaps them herself.

hungryhippo90 Tue 27-Dec-16 22:54:21

I'm going to be devils advocate here, is it possible that he needs DD to go and sort the exchange so he isn't paying for two extra pairs of bottoms whilst waiting for the refund for the first pair?

Even at £20 a pair, that would equal £65 out of the account at that moment which I think would be hard for anyone in that position.

Whilst talking about this, how did he pay for joggers? Cash or card? If card, won't he need to be present with the card at time of exchange/refund? Shops can get a bit funny about these things.

I do believe that this is just the latest of many situations where you feel that he doesn't pull his weight, so a niggle of an issue seems quite a bit bigger than it should.

As a lasting note. Pathetic of him to have chosen a new sofa and tiles over security for his children's needs.

ThisIsStartingToBoreMe Tue 27-Dec-16 22:54:54

how far away is the shop?

ClopySow Tue 27-Dec-16 23:01:03

To be honest, i'd just do it. And that's coming from someone who has picked up the pieces for the last 14 years. Just try to let go of it. He's not going to change and your fury will do nothing but use up all of the energy you need to keep for yourself and your children. The only person that will suffer if you don't do it is your child.

It's not fair, it's really fucking unjust and it's really really shit. But it's not going to change.

But i get it. I really, really do.

melj1213 Wed 28-Dec-16 00:23:33

Honestly YABU ... if someone gets me a present, and it doesn't fit/is faulty, I will ask them if they have the reciept and then take the item to the store myself - that way I can either exchange for the correct size (and I can try stuff on) or a working item or get the credit note for it to get something at a later date.

If you are the resident parent for your kids, then you have more opportunity to take your DD to do the exchange now, rather than waiting potentially weeks (and having him be out of pocket by ordering extras while still waiting for the refund from the first pair). It's not about him expecting you to sort his problems, it's about a gift recipient being the one who has the responsibility for returns/exchanges.

Astro55 Wed 28-Dec-16 00:33:33

It's times like these that your DD will realize who's being the better parent - his loss really

You reap what you sow

Astro55 Wed 28-Dec-16 00:36:57

It's not about him expecting you to sort his problems, it's about a gift recipient being the one who has the responsibility for returns/exchanges

Or .... it's about DD asking her dad for help and him saying NO - sorry can't do that!!

Pollyanna9 Wed 28-Dec-16 08:22:11

Thanks for all the replies which I get the basically two opposing points of view, I honestly do.

Apologies - nodded off (ably assisted by a bottle of wine) so have only just had chance to review all your kind replies.

The receipt currently sits 86.9 miles from me. He's suggesting DS gets it when he goes down this weekend. However, when that receipt makes it back home I will be back at work doing 50 hour weeks and a fairly long commute. Then I've got to use my car and my petrol (and my time) to go up to a shop so she can try on the different sizes. Whilst he sits at home not having to go to work and ignoring his financial responsibility to his first two children. Talk about 'out of sight, out of mind'.

Someone spoke of his financial situation at the moment - he's still financially supporting his DC with his new wife, just not us, and I'm sure that additional outgoings are an issue - but they're more of an issue for me who's extremely concerned about this month and going into debt/overdraft because of his shortcomings and poor future planning. He knew the area of work he was in was a massively reducing market around 3 years ago - he did nothing. A good year ago he knew the regulations were being tightened in an area that would for ever and ongoing affect the area of work he was in - if he didn't get out then he was utterly stupid (he didn't get out because he's incapable of making decisions like this), and he originally hinted to me about possible redundancies (but with a heavy emphasis on he wouldn't be one of the ones getting laid off) a good three months ago and yet he did nothing to plan for this, curtail other spending or plan on how to keep 2 of his 3 children financially supported.

And yes Astro55, this is a BIG part of it. If it was DS he would do it for him.

I obviously, almost always, end up having to do the task that I don't want to do either because it's time sensitive or it would cause DD stress for me not to pick it up. And he just sits there knowing that if he just keeps saying know, someone else (me) will be forced to do it. But I resent every single time.

In addition to this he will shaft me financially in small (but significant, to me) ways that show that he treats me and these two children with disdain (but would never be like that with his own DD, his third child). Couple of weeks ago DD and DS went to his for contact by train. I specifically checked and made clear that if I'm booking train tickets for DD (DS does his own) I MUST be sure that he is not then going to say 'oh actually I'll come and pick them up from your house'. Obviously, no financial issue there, but the faff of a stupid and long-winded refund process with the train company is something I do not need when I'm raising two teenagers, doing a full time job and managing a house on my own - it's an insult to my valuable time. So he decides to take them to a different station on the way back thus meaning that 1/3 of the journey that I had paid for didn't get used; he made this decision alone so should accept the ramifications. I asked him to please refund me. He essentially laughed at me and said 'oh it's only 50p'. Well I don't know of any train journey that's 50p and when I checked it's a good £5 for that leg of the journey. Has he refunded me it - no - so in everything he does in everything I am involved with with him on behalf of the kids, I have to pick up ALL the shit, remedy ALL the problems even if they are caused by him, including financial. And it always has an impact on my time - he's allowed to preserve his time (so he doesn't get bollocked by his wife) and he's allowed to preserve his finances, but me who has a massive shortfall coming up, isn't allowed to do that. He is still having a massively negative effect on me - and we've been divorced for 9 sodding years! This is how it was when we were married - NOTHING trumped his needs, nothing. It's one of the reasons I divorced him.

DD will not be down there for contact for quite some weeks as she can only take certain durations and frequency of visits to him. As someone suggested 'can't she do it with her dad in her contact' - yes, this is exactly how it should be done if she were going there regularly, I totally agree. But even if she was going this weekend it wouldn't happen because he has absolutely no responsibility. He expects me to buy Xmas presents for his WIFE and pay for them - anything where it should be his responsibility, he shirks it (and so does she - how it is my responsibility to buy him birthday presents on behalf of my two children, at my expense, I have no idea)..

I wouldn't mind but I've been SO tired this year with work - it's a hard job and a lot of goals that I have to meet, I also have anxiety but have pushed myself hard in my job to get as far as I've managed to get (which ain't that far, don't get too excited!) but I've never ever stopped pushing myself. All this stupid shit on top does really get to me because of the impact on me when I am working so hard and keeping all the plates spinning single handedly. And on top of this I don't even have a single penny of spare money left (unless I plunder my DSs car savings account) to avoid going into overdraft (which will take me months to pay off btw and will severely restrict our lives for all of those months) because I've just had to spend all spare money I had put aside on a new blasted boiler. So I've literally got nowhere to hide financially which is very worrying, unlike him who if push came to shove his parents, her parents, all sorts of people would be able to financially support them (and wouldn't be surprised if they are already doing anyway).

Pollyanna9 Wed 28-Dec-16 08:24:04

saying *no

ClopySow Wed 28-Dec-16 14:41:39

I mean this in the kindest possible way. You have to let this shit go.

Don't pay for any train journeys. Don't buy his wife any presents. Don't think about where his money is coming from.

Completely disengage. Focus on yourself and the children.

It's not fair. It's fucking hard. It's exhausting. But it's 10 times worse if you are trying to change his behaviour and resenting the fuck out of him all the time.

Save your energy for yourself.

Pollyanna9 Wed 28-Dec-16 15:30:47

You see though Clopy I HAVE to pay for the train tickets for DD when she goes to see him as we are outside of our pre-arranged contact scenario so I pay for them - we used to meet at a half way point but she so hates going now that she has different travel arrangements and because they outside of the 'proper' arrangement, he won't pay for them. So if I don't pay, she wouldn't be able to go and see him, her step sister or any of the rest of her family at all. He then buggers me around if there's a refund needed.

And re the don't buy his wife any presents - Clopy, if I don't then when DD and DS go for contact at Xmas, or birthdays or whatever the occasion is, they get shit for it from either him or the SM. DD has had texts from SM in the past "Your dad had nothing to open from you on his birthday" - and this was when she was going for regular contact. My view: SM should have taken DD shopping for the present and them brought it together - I have no idea why I have to be involved. But if I don't do it, DD gets the resulting drama that makes things really awkward and cringy for her.

So I have to get involved and also fork out for these items and it wouldn't be so bad but money is really really tight and I cannot keep being shafted (with things like train tickets).

Honestly and I mean this 100%. If I never had to speak to this asshat ever ever again I would be SOOOOOO happy.

It's not about changing his behaviour (gave up on that years ago), it's about not being treated like a bloody servant. Honestly, the tone of his communications "You will do this" "You will do that" - not "Could you" or "Shall we". And I don't see why I should have to put up with that.

He's now excited about the fact these joggers have been reduced by £3 but he didn't see the significance of shafting me out of £5.50's worth of a train ticket - that's ok, apparently. And it's not just the principal, it has an actual financial effect on me. And that's not ok is it.

I follow the modus operandi you describe virtually all the time but then anything like this and he speaks to me like he's the boss of me and I just will not have it any more. I'm not his doormat to be told imperiously what to do and when.

Astro55 Wed 28-Dec-16 16:08:55


I'd DD wants to see dad outside contact arrangement so then you should tell her that it's her fathers responsibility to get her there - ask him -

If SM expects gifts she should pay for them - I don't expect gifts from my children - like you say she should take them shopping -

You seem to allow him to treat you as a doormat and now the kids are rolling over as well -

Start writing some rules - start saying no!

DONOT suggest gifts that are necessary - go for nice extra gifts -

Think outside he box and out manover him - you see bright and capable

Pollyanna9 Wed 28-Dec-16 17:27:32

Hang on Clopy.

In one post you've essentially told me that your view is that I should sit back and just let it roll over me no matter how shitty things get. Yes?

Now in this post even though I've confirmed that most of the time I do do exactly as above, but at other times I fight my corner because I don't appreciate being treated like shit, but that even though I've stated that, I am also at the same time, a doormat.

I can't be both!!

I could go with the hardline mode as you suggest. That would result in:
1. DD not seeing her dad, half sister, extended family
2. DD (and possibly DS) getting flack and bad attitude when they visit.

Believe me, over these years I have been VERY starkly black and white with him about many many issues too numerous to mention. And in line with many many parents who have to deal with XPs, I've also sucked up and let go all sorts of things rather than let them rile me. I think on the whole it's been a sensible balance from me.

Most of the time the let it slide thing works perfectly well. On occasions like this is sticks in my craw not least because of the financial impact on ME and/or the fallout on THE KIDS.

If at all other times I wasn't being asked to buy presents for his wife or spending my money to get him a birthday present (!) maybe I wouldn't be so pissed off with regard to these jogging bottoms. I would be happy to take them back. He just refuses to work with me sensibly on anything and speaks to me like a servant - when these issues arise.

You've said 'you can't change him'. You're right. Let me tell you what will happen if I say to him 'you have to pay to see her'. He won't see her. He's been happy to not see her for 7 months this year so doing that again would be entirely easy for him - are you actually saying that it's more important that I make a point and lose her her contact, then pay for a train ticket and she has contact? By the way, our contact order is based on us each travelling half way so me paying for a train ticket for highly infrequent contact for DD, isn't a massive issue - it's once in a blue moon so I've got absolutely no problem supporting her right to contact in this way.

But then you can surely see that where that falls down is when he changes the ticket like some dictatorial arsehole and doesn't repay me for the unused portion, that's where I have a problem. Just exactly what do I do about that then? Take him to court? There is NOTHING I can do. He's proven he cannot be trusted to be fair and reasonable and so the unrepaid train ticker is another one which I am again sucking up - not because I am a doormat, because it's what I HAVE to do do maintain contact for her and because, frankly, I cannot figure out how I would get the money out of him short of driving 180 mile round trip to his house, mugging him, and getting the £5.50 out of him that way. So here's one that I have had to let go. It's choosing battles and this is one I can't win so I'm leaving it, end of.

Yes, SM should take them shopping. But she doesn't/won't, they don't/won't. Result: impact on the kids if I don't on occasions do this.

'Now the kids are rolling over as well'? I have no idea how they are doing this or what you mean by that tbh.

'DO NOT suggest gifts that are necessary - go for nice extra gifts' - sorry again I don't know what you mean. What the type of gift is isn't relevant is it? You mean for DD/DS? The gifts she asked for were things she wanted so I don't know what you mean - sorry.

tinyterrors Wed 28-Dec-16 17:37:53

This isn't something to get massively worked up about on its own but I can see how the resentment has built over the years.

I second Clopy, you need to disengage. If you're dd won't go as part of the usual contact arrangements with her brother then she doesn't go. If she's a teen then she's old enough to understand the concept of money so tell her you can't afford to pay for the train and her father won't.

A teen is also old enough to take a bus to town and swap a pair of jogging bottoms for a different size that can be tried on to check they fit. Ideally you're ex would take her but he won't, so she can go herself.

She's also old enough to use some pocket money to buy her dad a birthday present if she wants to. If she doesn't then that's fine but you don't have to do it.

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