Contact and difficult logistics(10 Posts)
Not sure what I'm after here really, I've kind of come to the point where I feel like I just need to accept "it is what it is" and get on with it as best I can, however that's really not very well currently so if anyone can offer any practical advice / support / a grip then that'd be great...
Long story short STBXH left suddenly a few months ago, soon became apparent there was an OW, with whom he is now living, approximately 90 minutes from DC and I.
Due to logistics and his work schedule (often away / out of the country) it's difficult for X to see DS during the week and so since he left he's had DS practically every weekend (bar a couple where he's been otherwise engaged with OW) from after school on Friday to Sunday mid-afternoon.
I'm finding this really hard. Despite my feelings towards X I will always endeavour to support his relationship with DS and it goes without saying that DS is top priority in all this.
But...I am seriously struggling with the injustice of it all. X walks out but sweeps in at the weekend, the absolute epitome of Disney Dad, and takes DS to do XY or Z fun thing, meanwhile during the week I'm the one nagging DCs to get up / go to bed, school run, homework, tidying rooms and general monotonous routine. By the time I get home from work, walk dogs make dinner etc etc there's very little scope for actual quality time Ultimately I feel that although X is the one who left it'seems me who's being punished while he faces no consequences whatsoever, but I don't see a way of changing the current set up without a negative impact on DS.
Would every other weekend work better for you and the DCs? That would give you quality time. Just because weekdays are not possible for your ex doesn't mean you should have less quality time. I assume there is no court order and this has been decided between you. Did you consider other options? It's still quite new so no harm in saying this isn't working, let's try something different.
I agree with pp eow would probably be better and I would also be sending homework with them too and encouraging ex to do mundane, day to day, tasks as well as treats.
My ex has the kids every other weekend. He doesn't seen them mid-week as he lives too far and work too late for it to be convenient.
We tried every weekend for a while but the kids resented not being able to see friends and chill here. Mon-fri is too busy for quality time unless it's the school holidays. If his weekend includes a bank holiday then he keeps them for an extra day.
Thank you all for your suggestions.
I probably should have clarified in my original post that I casually suggested to DS the other day that maybe he could spend the odd weekend at home but he's (entirely understandably) reluctant to do so if it means missing out on time with his dad.
I think I will suggest that at least sometimes STBXH needs to organise a mid week pick up from school and drop off the next morning in place of weekend contact. No doubt it will go down like a lead balloon as it involves putting himself out slightly but I fail to see why I should facilitate things for him at my expense.
What age is DS? He probably isn't old enough to understand the long-term mpact of having less leisure time with you. He may think you're reducing his time with his dad but you're not - you're evening up the balance of leisure time.
I hear you considering, suggesting and giving DS and your ex alot of say in the decision. That's very nice but you're putting yourself last. You don't have to justify your decision if you think it's right.
It's your responsibility to make DS available for a reasonable amount of contact time. If STBXH objects to the reduction in weekend contact, offer reasonable weekday alternatives. If you think he's going to be difficult, do it in writing so you have proof.
Have you considered mediation?
Unless DS is a teen it is not fair to bring them into the discussions. I would tell ex you are changing it to 1 in 3 or EOW so you get quality time with the children.
Emeralda Yes, we are going for mediation, it should have been in a couple of weeks but X behaved so atrociously last weekend (deposited 14 year old DD in a strange city 90 minutes from home, unsupervised for 36 hours to be with her 17 year old boyfriend and duped DS into meeting OW against his will) that I postponed the appointment as I was so angry I couldn't bear the thought of being anywhere near him.
Coincidentally enough he has now emailed me a spreadsheet (colour coordinated and everything!) of when he intends to have the kids - once again all on his terms and including weekends with DS staying at his place which at the moment DS has made it clear he's not ready to do because of OW.
It's all such a mess. I have responded that we will discuss it during mediation. Just don't want my little boy to suffer anymore than he already is
How old is DS?
I agree wait till mediation.. assuming DS is about the same age as DD, it may be worth saying email me the dates you are available and I will let you know when they would like to come.
If he is going to not see DD for 36 hours that is not contact anyway .
He's 10 Starlight and would happily see X every weekend, just not en masse with OW and her DD.
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