What to do about ExH & his partner(29 Posts)
Sorry it's a long one!
Quick backdrop..Had one daughter with ExH, amicable split when she was 2 and have always been on good terms. Has always been close to my family, and we continued to live close to each other, in our own respective homes. He was very much the doting Dad to DD, and she loved spending time with him. I met DH2 many years ago, and he has been very supportive of my daughter, and I have never asked ExH for anything financially. We had a clean break and simply split our home 50/50, even though it was my original equity, and I made no other financial claim with regards to pension etc. Money was never something I wanted to be an issue, and things were very harmonious for years, until his GF came on the scene 4 years ago. He had bought a nice house from the proceeds of our split, with a beautiful bedroom he had decorated specially for DD, and she loved staying with her Daddy as and when she pleased. His GF has 2 kids, and an ExH of which relations are extremely hostile. They did not own a property together, and she was living in a rented flat when they met. She works on a low wage, whereas ExH is a big earner, and within 6 months, he announced to DD that he had sold his house, and they were moving further away to live with his GF and her kids. 3 bedroom house, one each for her kids, and none for DD. Her kids have huge dysfunctional emotional issues, and one is a self harmer, which completely freaked my daughter out, as whenever DD would go to see her Dad, they insisted she sleep with her in her bed. To try and 'bond' with her. Unfortunately the girl is very messed up, and needed more than a teenage ear! His GF is not very family orientated, the kids spend most of their time in their Dads flat. They never spend Xmas together, never holiday together..it is always them as a couple. They have been on many exotic holidays, but never take the kids.
Needless to say, this has affected DDs relationship with her Dad, to the point she simply didn't want to go and see her Dad. Her kids have bedrooms even though they barely stay there, yet DD was expected to sleep in the girl's bed, or on the couch. And they always arrange for her kids to be there, the same night DD goes to stay. She can't stand them, the boy is arrogant and rude, the girl is reclusive and simply doesn't speak. On the rare occasions DD has tried to spend time with her Dad alone, his GF has insisted that she and her kids come too. It has driven her to despair. DH is forever buying this lady expensive gifts and holidays, yet DD is now a teenager, and can see what is going on. On a recent shopping outing, DD was admiring a coat that cost 50pds, and her Dad scoffed that she had better get herself a weekend job. Then bought GF a leather coat for 400pds!!
The latest in this sad saga, is that ExH came into a large sum of money a few months ago, and has now announced to DD, in front of GF, that they are getting married in 2 weeks time. GFs idea of course, and they'll be honeymooning for 6 weeks. Alone of course. When DD expressed surprise at the luxury of their upcoming trip, he laughed, and said..if you're worrying about your inheritance, then don't. If there's any left, GF will split it between the three of you. They are not inviting any of his family to the wedding, as GF doesn't like them, which also saddens DD, as she used to love visiting them, and misses how things used to be. She came home and cried, and has declared her relationship with her Dad all but over. So how do I broach this, without over stepping the mark? I know it is not my business, but I'm just so sad for my daughter. What would anyone else here do?
Apologies, I can't see how old your DD is. Can you organise some time for your X to come over to yours for a chat. Do you still have the relationship where you can tell him how it has been for your DD, or has that ship sailed?
Ultimately his behaviour is his choice but perhaps he is still in the 'honeymoon' loved up period with new girlfriend. Does he genuinely not see the harm he is doing to his relationship with DD?
Would you take DD to see Xs relatives? I doubt they're happy with the situation.
they insisted she sleep with her in her bed No! no! no! That would be enough for me to pull visits.
Fuck what a tricky situation. Basically daddy is a total idiot and is prioritising getting his cock sucked than having a relationship with his daughter.
Can’t really see how you speaking to him will help.
Firstly, how old is your DD? If she's a teenager then she's old enough to start cultivating her own relationship with her extended family on her dad's side,and if she wants a relationship with them then I would start there in terms of encouraging her to maintain contact with e.g. Grandparents, aunts, cousins etc.
With regard to your ex, if you're on amicable terms I would call him when the GF isn't there and have a conversation with him along the lines of why your DD doesn't want to go there any more, In truth if his family have been cut off by the GF as well they likely know why his DD doesn't go there either, and while none of you might be in a position to change things, at least he can never say that he had no idea.
And in the meantime if your DD doesn't want to go then don't make her. But don't say anything about her father in front of her either. With some luck the relationship with the GF might not last, but even if it does, he is the master of his own destiny, and as such so is your dd. Hth
As your daughter is in her teens, she cannot be made to spend time somewhere that she feels uncomfortable. And that does sound really uncomfortable.
Yes, if you are able to contact your ex husband's family, then do so. If your ex husband is still interested in spending time with your daughter, he can do so at his family's house.
Yes we agree re the bed situation.
DD is now 17 and his GFs daughter is almost 16, so it has been horrendously awkward for her.
I just could not see how any mother could see this as acceptable. Or father for that matter!
She started sleeping on the couch about a year ago, and they couldn't understand why?!
She has been making excuses not to go, and when she does go over for a night, GF often takes him out to the pub or for dinner, and leaves DD at home with her 2 kids. DD often finds herself alone wondering why she even bothered going over!
Last week GF arrived home drunk, and they took themselves to bed at 9pm..for a session that had my poor daughter having to plug her earphones in!
The whole thing sounds incredibly disfunctional. As your DD is seventeen how would she feel about just being absolutely honest with her father and telling him the reasons why she doesn't want to go over there?
I've been split up from my DS father since DS was a baby. He's now 13. ExH used to have DS overnight twice a week but when he met his partner it dropped to once a week (this was about eight years ago) and then when DS then when DS was 8 or 9 years old it dropped to once a fortnight. The reasons given were that ex and his partner "needed a social life" and his partner also told me that in her opinion ExH saw DS too much.
I made my peace with Ex being a completely spineless twat. However at 13 DS isn't bothered about staying the night at his dad's and sees him on a more ad hoc basis, for example they go to the football together.
Does your DD want to spend the night at her dad's house? Or is this making her feel worse? It seems clear that neither your ex or his girlfriend want your DD there and she must be picking up on this. Of course she wants a relationship with her dad but at what cost? Someone has got to be the adult and I'm guessing it's not going to be your ex.
They need to sort her a bed and it's perfectly acceptable for her to say she is not coming until there is one. She also needs to confront her father about wanting to spend time alone with him. Both these things are genuine issues.
The rest of it is absolutely none of your business. You're very unpleasant about his girlfriend and her children and the stuff you say about expecting him to buy her what she asks for, their marriage and his will is pretty horrendous and grabby.
You might need to make sure you're not passing this attitude on to your daughter because he will pick up on it. Making comments about 'worrying about your inheritance' and getting a Saturday job might suggest he already has.
Did I understand correctly that you don't ask for any financial assistance from your ex? Do you mean he doesn't pay maintenance?
Frankly, your DD is practically an adult and your ex is a twat that do not care enough.
In all honesty I'm very surprised that regular contact visits are ongoing especially given her age and the difficulties she is enduring at her Dad's house.
If she doesn't want to go don't pressure her to go, do not intend to sort things with your ex, he will not see any reason considering how he has been behaving. He is gone.
Concentrate in acknowledging your DD feelings and supporting her at this time when she needs space away if his selfish dad.
I can assure she will feel better when she is not being messed by that toxic environment regularly.
No Margaret, that is not the case at all, and I really do not see why you would suggest this. I have done nothing but try to encourage my daughter's relationship with her Dad, and have tried to get her to talj to him, and find an understanding. He is not a bad person, and she does love her father. She just feels sidelined, and who wouldn't in that situation?
As for your suggestion that my daughter is conveying money grabbing vibes, how preposterous! He does not and has never paid maintenance, and I have never expected him to. We have had a good relationship and one that we have been proud of, as our daughter has been happy to have both her parents in her life, without the acrimony of so many divorce situations. So where from that scenario, can you suggest for a second, that we are being unpleasant about this? At 17 years old, my daughter is old enough to know what is going on. She is not stupid. She works after school, has regular babysitting work and has saved for her own car. She quite simply, takes nothing from her father, so I have to say, your comment is quite wrong.
I think he is showing your dd how money orientated he is. I can't imagine having any respect for a father that didn't pay a penny towards my childhood or provide a bed at his house for me to sleep in alone.
Yet another 'father' that thinks kids live on fresh air and grass.
Support her if she decides to stop visiting him.
As for the inheritance comment, my daughter was quite taken aback by it too, it has certainly not been anything that was remotely mentioned before, and leads me to think that this has certainly crossed his mind in that regard.
I know many people who have remarried partners where they have children from prior marriages, and they have all ensured that their children's financial interests are protected in some way. I don't see that as being unreasonable? Yes, if ExH chooses not to do this, that is very much his business, but I as a parent, would be wary in his situation.
As for our daughter and her visits, yes she is now of an age where she can refuse to see him, but she loves and misses her Dad. A few weeks ago they had planned to go for a pizza, as his GF was going out. She threw a wobbly in front of DD, and demanded to know why he wasn't taking her kids too. And naturally, her Dad complied.
Does the GF ever go out with her children, and not your Ex? Something like visiting her family, or a female friend. So that Ex could see your DD then?
It may be if your DD is able to convey to him how upset she is, and doesn't go to visit, he may make more of an effort. Do you think he wants to see her?
Elements of this are v similar to my divorce and my son’s situation with his dad. He’s a mature 14. His dad doesn’t give him any time just the 2 of them, no supporting his hobbies. Everything is focused around his much younger girlfriend and her young son. I have tried to mediate but nothing improved. My son has virtually written off his relationship with his dad. He and his dad are very different characters and his dad has limited emotional intelligence unlike my son and so I always suspected this day would come. My son has close, loving and strong males in his life, and I make a great Mum and dad. I hope your daughter’s upsetment gives way to ambivalence. Entirely his loss
So he's never paid maintenance and you have a good relationship. Not surprised.
If she’s 17, she’s old enough to now control the relationship with her dad. He sounds fucking horrible, though.
Ignore Margaret, what a stupid comment she made. People on MN love using the word "grabby", regardless of how irrelevant.
OP, this sounds really hard. I don't have any advice. I do think you were wrong not to sort out any maintenance payments. He is a high earner and you could have put it aside for her. This would at least mitigate some of what she is experiencing now. You could put the money towards trips to see her extended family, for example.
Start claiming the maintenance. She deserves this money. If she wants the coat she can have it out of the money he owes her.
£50 is too much for him as a high earner? Fair enough if he was contributing to her upbringing (or ever had) but he's not. Claim the maintenance and put it away for her.
Her relationship with her father sounds dead in the water.
I'm not suggesting you're short of cash, by the way. But having absolutely nothing to show for her dad's involvement in her life - even if it's something as cold as cash - can't be much comfort to you daughter.
Agree completely never . OP you seem to think you did the right thing by never claiming money from your ex - by you are wrong. Sorry
Twatyer by name....
Given her age OP, she'll work that it's not worth her time or effort to continue the relationship herself. You just need to be there to comfort her when she does. It's not fair, but she'll remember that you were the one there for her in the end.
I would start claiming maintenance as what Never knowing said. back date it if poss.
I would also leave your daughter to decide if she wants to see her Dad. maybe suggest to her that she invite her dad to a coffee shop alone or a walk in the park. just so she has some time alone with him but not go the house.
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