Children's parties & access(36 Posts)
I am newly separated from exP.
He's still very sore about it so we are keeping our distance. Not in position to talk things through properly (no surprise there - this is one of the main reasons we split). ExP is currently seeing DC on Wednesday afternoons, and Sundays. I intend to get a proper agreement in place soon, but it's early days. Also he doesn't have a new flat sorted yet so he says he can't have DC to stay overnight where is is currently staying (with family).
Issue is DD1 is 5 and gets quite a few party invites. She got one for last Sunday from a close friend - as it's ment to be exP's 'day' I thought he either needs to take DD1 to the party or tell her why she can't go. He refused and then said he wouldn't have the DC for the day at all So I took her to the party (though I did offer to cancel it but I ever heard back from him).
DD1 has just got another party invite - again its on a Sunday in a couple of weeks.
It feels wrong to be to decline the invitation just because it falls on exP's day.
My view is it's all about the DC. And if DD1 wants to go to a party she is invited to she should be able to go, and the parent who has the DC on that day needs to incorporate the party into plans for the day (ExP lives in same town BTW - it's not a matter of geographical inconvenience). DD1 enjoys parties above all else as do many kids her age. ExP's usual plans pretty much just involve hanging out at his Mum's for the day, which is fine but it's not like it's a huge inconvenience to take her to a party.
So I'm interested to hear how other families handle this - is it that the exP needs to suck it up and deal with any parties that fall on his day?
Or is it actually all about the adults and what they want to do, and therefore I should refuse all Sunday invites obo DD1 - which is what exP wants me to do (when he takes a breath from telling me it's ALL about the DC!).
I agree that children should be allowed to get on with their social life, but in the terms as described by Balia. You need to think how much will be won and lost in a battle about parties, and then make a decision.
There's nothing to tell anyway & I'm too bloody knackered to even think of going out beyond a Sunday lunch.
I don't tell him anything and I'm not relying on him for anything either. But his DD's do need to see him.
Appologies for multiple postings.Phone playing up
I think whether he's willing to take her to activities is something you should discuss when you look to moving to alternate weekends. If he won't take her you'd be better pushing him to have a fixed day and night every week rather than a whole weekend alternate weeks.
If you think he's trying to screw up your social life best thing is to keep your plans to yourself and try not to rely on him for times you'd like to go out. He'll probably get bored of caring after a while.
It's his choice to only see them Wednesdays & Sunday afternoons. He is thinking he is controlling my social life by doing this and not having them nights or for a weekend (therefore I can't go out - in his mind I'm having some wild alter ego life because I don't live with him anymore).
It's not about the DC - he thinks he is punishing me buy restricting his time with the DC. If it weren't so sad it would be hilarious!
Looking forward what about things like swimming lessons - next term DD1 is due to start swimming lessons on Saturday mornings. Assuming by then he will be in a position to have the DC every 2nd weekend, is it unreasonable to expect him to support DD by taking her to these? Or must she miss every 2nd lesson because it's HIS time? I will have to pay for the entire term of lessons regardless.
So he only gets to see his kids on Wednesday afternoons and Sundays and you think you should dictate how he spends that time? He's their dad, let him decide.
On "his" day I think it's completely up to him how their time together is managed.
I think a lot of men don't realise what a faff it is to take a child to a party:
Accept the invite,
buy the present,
buy the card,
buy the wrapping paper,
get DC to write the card,
find out how to get to venue,
stand around for a couple of hours and make small talk with other (predominantly female) parents,
take DC to host to thank them,
Leave, but not forgetting party bag.
Then again, maybe they do and make the perfectly understandable decision to NOT take DC to party because they realise its such a faff!!
Btw why did you want your ex-p to tell you what he was going to do about the party? He should be contacting the host himself. You should step out of the picture completely and let him deal with it.
Your ex-p is on a steep learning curve at the moment. Let him crack on with it.
If it helps, I find that if I invite another child to a play date and they are with the other parent at that time, the parent I have asked simply says 'no, they're with their other parent'. No one has ever asked if I would be happy to contact the other parent to ask or volunteered to ask the other parent...with one child I do contact the other parent as I have his number but he usually doesn't answer or reply to texts.
I'm pretty sure he would be one of the parents that didn't RSVP if I did that.
He picked up DD's from school/CM last night, took them to mine and put them to bed etc & I left the invitation out for him. I emailed him previously to say "party invite on the fridge, let me know what you want to do" - no comment received yet.
It's not yet a big deal - but it's really good to know I'm on the right track as far as covering these issues with him in the future goes.
One tactic you could try is to send the party invitation to him direct - "oh, this is for you" sort of thing, so then needs to contact the friend's parents to let them know if DD can go. Maybe he's feeling anxious that he would be expected to stay with her, or that he'd have to tell everyone about the split and can't face it just now. Should get easier in a bit.
I have usually taken her to parties in the past. But she is 5 now and getting to be the age where she could be dropped off at a party and collected in a couple of hours, while he spent some one on one time with DD2 elsewhere. Or he could stay and enjoy the party - he actually (up till now) is the one who knows all the parents as up to this year he did all the school drop off's.
I don't expect children's parties to take absolute priority over all other plans. But in the absence of a good reason not to go, I think she should go & he needs to deal with it. It's all part of 'normal' life isn't it?
As I said, the split is very recent (one of the Xmas casualties) so I'm hoping things will improve with a bit of time.
I can see this topic being a great source of advice & support as we weave our way through this.
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