Toddler missing us(5 Posts)
Hello, my son is almost two and spends two nights per week with his dad, he also usually sees him once during the week depending on his shifts for either the day or a shorter visit.
We had a period where he was getting upset coming back which I put down to missing his dad and being anxious about leaving him but it had settled and he seemed to be used to the routine. But things have started up again recently as he has been getting very upset as his dad goes and rampages around or hits out though settles quite quickly. His dad says he is not sleeping at his house and is very unsettled, saying my name and crying.
I feel so awful that he is obviously missing one parent when he is with the other. I feel so guilty I am putting him through this and I can't even explain it to him. Will it get better when he can communicate better so he can tell me how he is feeling? I hate myself for what I have put him through.
That sounds really hard for you. How well do you get on with your ex? Could you suggest he doesn't stay overnight until he's a bit older? Or wouldn't that go down very well? Could he just spend the day with his dad?
I think I'd do what could to make contact with both parents regular and short. Also, does your DS go to nursery at all? When my DSD was that age, handovers were better when they were done at nursery - so Dad would drop her and Mum would collect her etc.
I wouldn't want to take his overnight contacts away, it wouldn't seem right to me. I wish that maybe we could have a regular meet up so it is not so long for him between visits. One week it is 3 days between the next seven as he has him on different days.
He is not always upset sleeping at his dad's - sometimes he is fine, others he says my name and is a bit unsettled. He is too young to tell us what he is feeling which is the hardest part for me.
We get on well, but it was very difficult at first. I am afraid things will deteriorate again at some point because how we are now is hood for our son.
It is hard whatever you do. In my experience (I've gone through it myself and help others) the transition is often the hardest thing for the kids. Most of them settle down 10 minutes, etc. after handover.
Tense standoffs (you know...the `High Noon Handover') can upset a child so it's best to make them short, sweet and courteous.
One thing I would recommend would be that some of your DS' toys go back and forth with him between your and your ex's house. As does a picture of you at his house and vice versa.
As long as both you and your ex are good parents this will pass. It IS hard - but with kids, what is OK this week isn't next week, etc.
I often see a lot of parents fighting tooth and nail over overnight stays. They ARE important and send an important message to children. Some parents say `Kids need ONE home...MINE'....my personal view is that this isn't the case. My son has grown up with two homes and considers both of them home. It seems natural to him that he lives with me part of the time and his mum the other.
This is despite an extremely acrimonious struggle to make child arrangements...so there is a LOT of hope for you if you are on relatively good terms with your ex.
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