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How to handle - blended family

(14 Posts)
Frenchie85 Wed 24-Jun-20 16:40:19

Hi all, after some advice and opinions as unsure of best way forward. I've been with my partner for 5 1/2 years, I have one DS from a previous relationship, and he has 1 DS and one DD. We have all been living together for 3 1/2 years.
Things have been getting progressively worse between us over the years, and I have often felt the best way forward was to split, however never quite had the courage to actually do it.
Finally made the decision and told him after yet another argument that I was done and wanted to leave.
The house is his, so it would be me and DS leaving. We also have a family dog.
He has asked whether the children could still see each other and have play dates etc, as they are really close to each other and have blended as a family.
My personal view is probably that, as hard as it will be for them and us in the short term (they will be heartbroken), in the long term a clean break would be better. I'm also reluctant to leave too many doors open for continued contact, as I really need a complete clean break from him, our dynamic is very toxic.
On the other hand, I obviously want to try and minimise the hurt for the children as much as possible.
RE the dog, I'm going on the assumption that she will sadly remain with him, and again this is something that will really upset my DS (and me too, but I'm an adult and can manage), but I expect he might try and suggest some kind of 'sharing my arrangement, which again I'm not so comfortable with due to increased chances of contact, but unsure if that would be best for DS, even if only in short term, while he adapts.
So, interested in people's opinions: clean break, or maintaining some contact?

OP’s posts: |
flamingochill Wed 24-Jun-20 17:04:08

Clean break imo.

Aquamarine1029 Wed 24-Jun-20 17:05:27

Clean break, 100%. It's the only way forward.

Sunnydayshereatlast Wed 24-Jun-20 17:07:34

When me and dh split our dc had zero contact - though the dc didn't see that much of each other.. And I most def kept the ddog..
And the 2 dkittens!!
Clean break imo is best.

Flittingabout Wed 24-Jun-20 17:13:09

Are the children old enough to have an opinion? Are they on SM?

I wouldn't be so quick to suggest clean break without thinking of the above first.

Having people just disappear from your life is a huge trauma for children. I might want to get a little more creative than a clean break if they wish to see each other.

Flittingabout Wed 24-Jun-20 17:13:46

Also, I should have started with this...I am sorry things haven't worked out for you guys.

SunbathingDragon Wed 24-Jun-20 17:15:30

How old are the children and why should he keep the dog?

If you are likely to be moving to somewhere relatively near and the children might come across each other at school or other activities, it won’t be a clean break anyway.

HowFastIsTooFast Wed 24-Jun-20 17:19:24

I think the age of the DC will make a big difference, if they're secondary school age they can likely see the reasoning and get over it but if they're little and have been living together 3.5 years (longer than they could probably remember if they're much younger than 6) it could be an enormous wrench. Good luck with navigating it x

Frenchie85 Wed 24-Jun-20 17:20:32

@Flittingabout thank you, it is very sad, but I feel I've tried all I can, and it's time to go now, as it is so toxic and unhealthy.
DS is 8, partner's children are 9 & 8, so not on SM, but have devices to communicate with other parents and games console to interact with friends.
The dog I'm assuming because I will need to rent as I don't own, and it's very difficult to find rental who accepts pets where I am.
I am looking to go back to where I lived before moving in, I work near there and my DS actually still attends school there, as I never moved him (might have been an unconscious inkling).
I'm also of the view to go clean break, but don't want to cause further trauma for the kids at the same time - they consider each other family, and don't remember not being in each other's lives really sad

OP’s posts: |
Frenchie85 Wed 24-Jun-20 17:25:05

Obviously, it's also very possible that the kids' mum will have her own opinion as to whether she wants her kids to maintain contact or not. We are civil and generally get on, but as a mum in her position, I'd probably want my kids to have a clean break.
This is what's stopped me so many times before from going, but now I feel I've made it worse, as the kids have an even stronger relationship, and really unsure on how to manage this - there is no escaping this will hurt and damage the kids especially sad

OP’s posts: |
Flittingabout Thu 25-Jun-20 12:04:22

It sounds like you have worked really hard and can leave with no regrets about the relationship now.

In terms of the kids their mum doesn't have to agree as on contact days their dad could facilitate contact. It would be easier if they were teens and could do it themselves.

In your shoes I would probably go low contact with an occasional outdoor activity or playdate (not with you and their dad both there though so as not to confuse them) then gradually move to less and less face to face contact if you feel it appropriate depending on how it goes.

It is definitely a balancing act and it depends if you can put aside your feelings for your ex as well.

You might want to read up about how to broach bereavement with kids as there is a lot of overlap here.

BarbedBloom Thu 25-Jun-20 12:12:49

I think clean break too. In a few years they will probably find each other on facebook anyway and will be old enough to manage their own friendships with them. This is what happened with my friend. Her kids found his as teens and are still friends, but my friend and her ex don't need to be involved when they meet up

Frenchie85 Thu 25-Jun-20 14:03:32

@BarbedBloom that's a good point. It won't be long until they have phones (his kids already do) - so they can communicate themselves, without us needing to get involved. Thank you, I hadn't thought of that, and it makes me feel a bit better.

OP’s posts: |
Frenchie85 Thu 25-Jun-20 14:07:22

@Flittingabout yes that will probably be what I end up doing. Maintaining low contact at the beginning and maybe as time goes on relationships will revolve naturally for the children - they either stay in touch or naturally fade away.
I'm fine with putting feelings aside my concern is that he will use the excuse of 'contact for the kids' to maintain contact with me. He is narcissistic and has control issues, so I really need to cut him off properly to be able to move on.

OP’s posts: |

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