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Child messaging absent parent(10 Posts)
Created a new profile for this as it could be outing.
This evening my 15 year old son told me he’s been messaging his father for the last 1-2 weeks I think.
The short back story is Father was abusive in more than 1 way but I hid it at the time, son does now know some of what happened but not the worst of it.
Father cheated on me and cut off all contact with our 4 children about 4 years ago.
I think I’m writing this to get it out if that makes sense, I think it also sounds light when it was anything but. It was horrific - being married to him and putting my children back together after he abandoned them. I’m so very hurt but am I being selfish? I’m hoping for some perspective on this please.
It's a horrible feeling to be connected again via your child to your abuser.
I don't think you can really control the contact unless you're worried about risk but I just wanted to say I know the feeling and it's awful.
A lot of children get back in touch around this age and often they can see the absent parent with more objectivity than you might expect.
I've known one boy who went to the extent of moving in with his dad but it didn't last long at all.
It's not like toddler age where they idolise their parents
It is very difficult and goes against instinct, but I feel you have to let the child come to their own conclusions (unless at real risk of harm). A helpful thing I heard was that if you criticize the other parent, the child feels you are criticising half of their own self.
In my experience, the older child will go through difficult emotions but ends up seeing true colours for what they are, and if those colours are not pretty it is hard for them but they will have made an achievement in understanding and learning how to cope - whether that means keeping, cutting or limiting contact.
And you will be respected for giving them the trust to make their own decision, and being there through thick and thin.
Thank you both so much for the replies.
I have told him that I won’t stop the contact but it broke my heart to do so.
The thing is I could have gone to the police about my ex but I didn’t because he was out of our lives and now I have to accept this. Can someone please tell me how? How do I pretend everything’s ok when all I feel is betrayed and that our relationship is ruined.
Let him message him. Was he abusive to you both? Or just you? Unfortunately he is at an age where he can make his own decisions.
Why is it ruined? He's not going to stop being his dad that can't be changed.
Pretending is hard.
I think it helps to have spaces to vent. Eg it might help to see if there's a women's aid worker or counsellor who could allow you to talk things through.
Then when you talk to your child it's easier to keep your child at the centre of things. Getting to know an absent parent helps with identity.
Whether they're crap or OK, it's better for them not to be a mystery.
If your son didn't know what was going on it's a bit harsh to say that he has ruined your relationship. I assume it was your son who made contact? You are taking this as a slight against yourself when it's not that at all, honestly.
If your son never witnessed the abuse, or the extent of it, and you hid it (understandable) and it never happened to him, lots of teenagers become curious about an absent parent. As hard as it is, try not to take it personally. By making emotive comments you put him in the position where he may instead choose to lie and hide it from you. It means your EX will then have unfettered access and your son will not feel comfortable talking to you.
How do you feel betrayed and that the relationship is ruined? Do you feel that he is only your child then? He gets fifty percent of his DNA of his father, of course he will be curious now that he is getting older. Don't make it about you. It isn't about you. It's about your son. He will have to decide for himself if he gains something by having a relationship with his dad. Even if his dad abused you, he can still have some worth for your son.
It's not about you.
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