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So my kids hate me because i won't let their dad come to the house anymore

(64 Posts)
Yogagirl17 Tue 30-Oct-12 17:03:55

We split in Jan after I found out he was having an affair. Kids are 9 & 11 and don't know anything about the affair. We tried to be "amicable" for a while - I used to let him visit with them in the house after he finished work. In addition he has them to his place at the weekends. But over the months he's become more and more nasty and bullying towards me to the point that I told him he simply is not welcome in the house anymore. I've said he can see the kids whenever he likes, just not here. If he wants to see them on a weekday evening I"ve suggested he can take them back to his for dinner and drop them home again later or take them out for tea or meet them at his mums...whatever.

But now the kids are furious at ME. They say I'm unfair, they say their dad says I'm being unfair too. Of course in their eyes he is a saint and I'm the one who is unreasonable. Adn just now when I had my DD(11) screaming about how I only ever think about myself I made the mistake of telling her how awful he is to me. I guess I wanted her to understand where I was coming from but I also know that was the wrong thing to do.

I don't know what to do now. I can't make them understand, they aren't going to forgive me and I won't change my mind. So now they just hate me. sad

TinyDancingHoofer Fri 02-Nov-12 15:25:46

That sounds very sensible Yoga and i would agree that you would have to tell both. Tell them in a very simplistic way, no nasty details and then answer any questions they have. Secrets always come out in the end and it would be far better having it in the open than coming out when they are older and it being a huge issue.

Yogagirl17 Fri 02-Nov-12 13:59:57

Will have to wait til next monday or tuesday I think as they are going to be with him all weekend and I'd rather they had some time to process and talk to me if they want before they see him again. It would seem a little unfair to tell them tonight then send them off to spend the whole weekend with him feeling confused/angry/whatever they may be feeling. Think I will have to tell DS(9) too as I hate the idea of telling one but not the other, then I'm just encouraging more keeping of secrets.

mummytime Fri 02-Nov-12 13:34:14

There are couples who use their kids as a weapon, or tell them too much. You don't sound like one of those. If he is still going to be seeing OW or have a string of girlfriends, at 11 your DD is going to work out the bare facts pretty quickly. If you tell her then she will know at least you were honest about this, and hopefully will trust you a little more in future.
My parents split when I was 2, my mother told me very little then, little bits came out over the years, but I still don't know all the gory detail, and don't want to. But I knew enough to accept it.
Of course you want to pick your time, so it isn't in the middle of an argument, or just a "blurt out".
Good luck!

TinyDancingHoofer Fri 02-Nov-12 13:18:23

I think they are old enough to know why you split, rather than it coming out when they are older.

I was told about my mothers affair when i was about 8, really changed my attitude towards my dad. I had spent a long time thinking he had made my mother leave rather than her walking out. I don't think he actually used the term "affair" and it was said during a proper conversation rather than just blurted out. He said she didn't love him anymore but of course she still loved me. But because he still loved her it was hard for him to have her around when she loved someone else. Didn't really change my relationship with my mum, custody was 50/50. We are still close now and my parents developed quite a good co-parent relationship.

I guess every situation is different as is every child. But if you do tell, do try to do it in the proper way, as a conversation not when she is shouting and saying she hates you.

ledkr Fri 02-Nov-12 13:14:19

Never sure if I was right to do it but I told ds3 who was 14 at the time, that hid dad had left me for ow. I had kept it secret for a yr and then when there was a sniff of me dating again he went mad and I said his dad was upset hmm I decided as the main carer and constant parent that my relationship with him was crucial that I would tell him. He was fine but shocked and now in his twenties says I was right.
Op you are a human being too and do not have to feel uncomfortable in your own home.

ivykaty44 Fri 02-Nov-12 13:06:21

Thing is eventually your dc will find out the truth about the affair - then they will wonder why you were such a walk over and never said anything.

I would be very much matter of fact, dad had an affair and I couldn't live with him any further. So now we live apart and I was hoping we can both move on with our own lives and that includes your dad not coming in the house as if he was a friend.

Funnylittleturkishdelight Fri 02-Nov-12 12:45:00

I think she needs to know. She's old enough and needs to understand why he can't come in the house. If he hadn't made a issue out of it, you wouldn't have to tell her.

daytoday Fri 02-Nov-12 12:27:55

I don't think telling your daughter is tit for tat. I reckon you know your kids and what they need to know.

Protect them from arguments etc. But not the truth. I think if my mum hadn't told me my dad had met someone else our relationship (my mum and mine) would have been damaged quite badly.

Once we knew the truth we accepted it. We were hurt of course, but maybe not as angry with her - at a time when she was vulnerable too.

Yogagirl17 Fri 02-Nov-12 10:24:46

What was 'too much'? And was there someone else involved in your split?

The thing is, at the beginning I really hoped for an amicable split and did a lot of 'protecting' him, not just from the kids but from friends and family as well. But he has proved over and over that he IS an arse and has made life unimaginably difficult for me over the last ten months. This recent argument over him not coming to the house is just the latest example. At first he emailed me to say he would "fully support & respect" my decision. So when the kids turned to him and said 'dad, it's so unfair that mum won't let you in the house anymore', his response should have been 'we have to respect your mum's decision, don't worry about it, we'll just make other arrangements'. Instead he totally feeds their views that I am the one being unfair.

Is it so wrong to just want to level the playing field a little?

Daddelion Fri 02-Nov-12 10:16:14

My parents told us too much about the reasons for their divorce and I didn't want to know.

I separated from my ex and all we've told the children is that we don't love each other anymore but we love them.

But my ex isn't an arse (but we could have easily had an horrendouse split)

You know your children (and ex) best, so it's really your call

Yogagirl17 Fri 02-Nov-12 09:50:02

Daddelion are you speaking from any personal experience with this type of situation, either from when you were a child, or as a parent?

Daddelion Fri 02-Nov-12 09:04:25

Well, I can't see it suddenly making her happier.

She'll either be more angry with your ex, or if he gives his side of the story
(and the way you have described him he will) she'll be more angry with you.

Don't you think there's a danger of getting in a tit-for-tat situation?

AnyFucker Thu 01-Nov-12 23:19:43

Good call.

Yogagirl17 Thu 01-Nov-12 23:18:41

Thanks - will obviously not go into gory details (most of which i wish I didn't know myself and unfortunately do!) but will explain some version of the fact that this woman was daddy's girlfriend while we were still together and that when I found out he told me he loved her and I was very, very hurt - and of course that he still loves DD very much and is a good dad to her but I just can't be around him anymore. I think she will like the fact that I think she is grown up enough to know the truth and that I don't want to keep any secrets from her.

AnyFucker Thu 01-Nov-12 22:59:31

Good luck x

I agree that the benefits of telling her (child friendly version) outweigh any potential downsides

Yogagirl17 Thu 01-Nov-12 21:41:48

Thanks day, it's so interesting to hear how people feel about their own childhood experiences.

I've been given a lot to think about. I think on balance it seems the long term benefits of telling her outweigh keeping it secret. I'm going to wait until after the weekend though as she's been pushing my buttons the last few days and I don't want to do it when I'm feeling wound up and stressed out.

daytoday Thu 01-Nov-12 19:51:06

I'm going to post something that may be controversial.

My dad had affairs and my parents eventually split up when I was a teen, but brothers younger.

My mum didn't go into the gory details but did tell us my dad had met someone else and I'm bloody glad she told us.

She never bad mouthed my dad but in our childish minds we totally understood why they couldn't be together.

Im in my forties now and I adore my mum and time has revealed my dad as a sad man. I have never allowed myself to accept bad treatment from a man, even as a teen. Knowing the facts of my parents separation has allowed me to stay close to my mum but to also have worthwhile conversations with her about good relationships, love not always being forever. I guess what I'm saying is truth is really important.

ivykaty44 Wed 31-Oct-12 16:23:00

Pooh and this would be before weekend

ivykaty44 Wed 31-Oct-12 16:22:15

I would sit then down together

Tell them you have not tools them befor as you didn't want to cliff their thoughts but there dads friend was the reason you and hon. fell out, but you are over that note and it is time to move on

You want your life a privecy do no more dad here

Mutt Wed 31-Oct-12 16:16:47

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Yogagirl17 Wed 31-Oct-12 16:10:43

Yes, absolutely. He heard one of the kids say to me on the phone they had met a friend of his at lunch so he then emailed me to say 'by the way, just happened to bump into OW at restaurant today and she joined us for lunch.'

Mutt Wed 31-Oct-12 15:54:28

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Yogagirl17 Wed 31-Oct-12 15:40:32

So now I'm just wondring whether to do it before the weekend or after? They are supposed to be with him the whole weekend...? Might just wait til next week.

mummytime Wed 31-Oct-12 14:06:46

Yes sounds as if she is thinking about it. If you are honest then that is a good starting place.

Also make sure you have people and places to let off steam.

Yogagirl17 Wed 31-Oct-12 13:59:12

"But parenting teens (and just before) is tricky."

Ha ha tell me about it! But yes, she does have people she talks to - in fact two of her best friends have parents who are divorced. Just found out today she told one of these friends that she met a "friend" of daddy's he said she was just his "friend"...but obviously if DD is talking about it there are already questions in her own mind, right?

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