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Daughter feels unwanted

(14 Posts)
onoroff Sat 13-Apr-13 18:52:54

After a bit of advice here please. Me and ex broke up when dd a baby. She is now 7 and has lately started being upset that we are not together, obviously she is now old enough to realise the alternative. I had a text from ex today saying that she has been upset about this today (they are away together). He thinks that me meeting his gf with my dd would help as she would realise that we are all happy with the set up. I don't see that this would help and do not want to meet the gf and I am not 'happy' with the set up but just don't make a big deal about it. Am I being selfish to not want to meet the gf or am I right in thinking that this is not necessary and that he should concentrate on making our dd feel like she is important to him?

More importantly, should I be addressing this with dd as I don't want her to be unhappy or is it just a normal phase for a child to wish her parents were together?

bunchamunchycrunchycarrots Sat 13-Apr-13 18:59:13

My DD is the same age and has been asking lots of questions about me & her dad more recently. We both 'sing from the same hymn sheet' in telling her that we didn't get on living together but are fine now. I don't have a problem with his g/f and have met and spent time with her. I think it helps my DD see us get on but understand its not always feasible for everyone in these circumstances. Is there still animosity between you both? Is there any issues with the g/f?

onoroff Sat 13-Apr-13 19:10:34

I have no issue with the gf, she sounds nice, but I do not feel able to meet her. I am still quite bitter towards ex (ridiculous I know after so long) and just don't feel I can meet his gf. There is no animosity and in general we get on fine, I just don't think I can handle meeting the gf.

bunchamunchycrunchycarrots Sat 13-Apr-13 19:15:44

Is your DD getting a different explanation from your ex on why you aren't together? Has she explained why she's upset i.e. has anything been said to her at school etc.

DaydreamDolly Sat 13-Apr-13 19:17:53

Don't be pushed into something you don't feel comfortable with. All you can do is reassure your DD how loved she is. I don't see how meeting the gf will help especially if your DD picks up on your reticence to do so. Best of luck.

onoroff Sat 13-Apr-13 19:29:47

I am not sure why she has started to get more upset about it. I am wondering if I have over time given slightly more information than I have needed to on why we are not together and if perhaps that has confused her. I have not gone into great detail but perhaps her young mind has taken the bits I have said and made more of them, if that makes sense. I am sure she has picked up that I do not want to meet the gf as I was anxious when I dropped her off and thought she was there. I am not sure now whether to sit her down and have another discussion with her to try and stop her anxieties or whether the best thing to do is not talk about it as the talking about it is what seems to have upset her!

SoWhatIfImWorkingClass Sat 13-Apr-13 19:32:22

My SD said something similar to me the other day. She is 7 and I have been in her life since she was 4- everyone is happy with the set up. She just randomly said to me that she would like her mum and dad to be together but they don't love each other anymore.

I think in an ideal world all children would have their parents still together, and their love for each other will never end and everything would be all rosy. But it's not always the case, and sometimes it works better for the child if their parents are not together. That's my opinion on it, as I came from a broken family too. My parents split when I was 11, and although I wanted them to be together again so much that it was too painful to bear at one point, in time I began to realise that this was for the best. I settled down in to the new set up, and I was happy.

Your little girl has two parents who love her. It is a phase that she will most likely grow out of to want her parents to be together. My SD is very happy with how her life is, but I think every child in this situation thinks about their parents being together from time to time.

bunchamunchycrunchycarrots Sat 13-Apr-13 19:33:47

It's tricky. I think in your shoes id play it by ear and see if she asks again. If she does then that's your chance to try and get to the bottom of her upset.

onoroff Sat 13-Apr-13 19:40:08

Thanks everyone for the advice and wise words. It has really just reaffirmed what I thought anyway, that it is normal for her to want her parents to be still together even if she is at most times ok with the set up. I will, however, be more careful with what I do say to her in order to ensure that I am not exacerbating her anxiety in any way.

SorryMyLollipop Sat 13-Apr-13 19:45:10

You may not feel like meeting the GF (although it would be beneficial to your dd -I met my STBXH's GF purely for my kids to see us getting on so they wouldn't feel conflicted) but have you given your dd "permission" to like/love this GF? I know it's hard and it may stick in your throat but its well worth it.

One of my dds had a difficult time when new relationships were formed. I said "it's ok for you to like xxxx, she sounds lovely and daddy has chosen her so she must be nice. I am happy for you to love her too" my STBXH did the same regarding my bf - result - happier, more accepting, less conflicted children.

onoroff Sat 13-Apr-13 21:01:16

Thanks. I really don't think I could meet her but I could speak to dd and let her know it is ok to like her. I think I have acted like that as I have certainly never said anything bad about her but perhaps I need to be more specific about it so that she is sure.

keelyboo Sun 14-Apr-13 09:46:00

my elder two are 7 and 9 and the 9 year old understands why we arent together (shes old enough to remember the bad times) dd7 reguarly says she wishes me and her dad could live together again etc.
i explain as gently as i can why and give her a hug and just keep doing that i would say its quite common, sorrymylollipop makes a good point about children not knowing if they can like them!

I try and make sure im nothing but positive about his gf to them, although to be fair i dont know her so i have no reason to say anything bad lol, positive reassurance all the way she will be fine as long as shes getting the same words from both of you

HerrenaHarridan Sun 14-Apr-13 10:46:25

Agree with lollipop. You should make sure she knows its ok for her to bond with her dads gf and that it is in no way disloyal to you.

Also she may be feeling like she is trying to live to separate lives so try and so things to draw them together for her make cards with her and encourage her to address them to dad and gf, maybe get her a scrap book and a cheap camera, encourage her to chat about what she did with dad and gf. It is also with colliding with them so that certain things stay the same between houses for instance the same book for bedtime stories.

Also I don't know what your set up is obviously but if she doesn't already take a little suitcase with her from house to house maybe encourage her to so that she can take toys /books /treasures as she wishes

onoroff Sun 14-Apr-13 12:50:10

Thank you all. I do do most of what has been suggested but will try harder to be more positive as I do wonder if some of my unhappiness is filtering through and adding to the confusion. I try not to but sometimes perhaps I don't try hard enough.

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