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upset by DD's DF and in floods of tears

(35 Posts)
justfornow25022016 Thu 25-Feb-16 13:21:46

I'm crying my eyes out and trying to look after my DD (she's asleep for now) and struggling to do that, I can't even read the Cat in the Hat because my voice is catching and I'm sobbing on every line.

I've done a stupid thing and I can't take it back, and the only person I've ended up hurting/punishing is my DD, and it's eating me up.

It's to do with her dad's maintenance, I think I mis-read a situation and/or gave him the excuse he was looking for, I asked the csa to step in to try to sort things out because his payments were becoming less reliable, it's backfired because they have made things 10 times worse. He's now going to be paying about £10 a week.

It means that financially, I'm going to be about £100 worse off per month (so £1200 per year) and I feel like all I've achieved, is to make life harder for DD. That money would have covered all her clothes, shoes, play, little treats. I've just wiped all that out.

At the same time, I'm upset by the tone of the messages he's sent. The back story is that DD was the result of a fling, he left me to decide what to do with the pregnancy, right at the start of it (cut contact completely and moved cities) and has never met her despite my best efforts to set that up, but until now we've been able to discuss the money quite amicably. The messages I've received today are horrid, he's accusing me of only contacting the csa to money grab from him (which wasn't my intention at all). He sounds angry and is telling me how he's been struggling to make ends meet and is glad that this means he won't now be paying as much for DD, and basically accusing me of being a nasty person, who has been making life hard for him.

I've tried calling to have a reasonable conversation but he won't answer, I've also tried replying to his messages to point out that the only person he is punishing by paying less is DD. Given that he's rejected her since day one, I guess it's silly of me to think that he would care at all about her. But I care about her, so I have to try.

What's really upsetting me is the tone of the messages, and the fact that he seems to think he's been doing me a favour by paying anything, and is now taking the higher moral ground because I was somehow trying to 'milk him' for more and failed. And the talk of him struggling, that's really galling. He doesn't have a clue what I've been through because he didn't stick around to discuss or deal with any of it. I was completely on my own and still am. Noone was there when I spent most of my pregnancy trying to hide it and trying not to cry uncontrollably on public transport, or when I went through 2 days of labour/birth on my own. I've spent most of the last 2+ years raising DD with zero support, in a new place, where there has never been anyone to talk to about my feelings ever and I've been holding them all in for so long. I haven't used a babysitter and gone out ever and have devoted myself to doing a good job with DD. So many things have been so incredibly hard. I think if I told him the truth he would just think I was exaggerating. He seems to think I'm lying when I say I'm not on benefits and struggling to find work, but I'm not.

I think he blames me for continuing with the pregnancy after he'd disappeared (and then asking him for financial help once DD was here). But I didn't know what to do, I didn't even get to talk to a counsellor back then and was so emotional, and before I knew it it was too late to 'get rid' of DD. And I'm glad in the end because she is wonderful. If he had stuck around back then we could have at least talked about it.

There are so many things I could say to him about how life has been but I don't think he's ever really been interested (which is why I haven't), and definitely isn't now. Maybe what's coming out today is just all the emotion from holding it in but I can't help it.

DD doesn't seem to know what's going on and isn't much affected by me crying and I'm glad about that. But I'm so mad at myself for the stupid conversation with the csa and thinking that they could somehow fix things.

Anyway, I have noone in RL to say these things to and am struggling to pick myself up today, I can usually do it.

Grumpyoldblonde Thu 25-Feb-16 13:28:59

Hey, you did NOT do a stupid thing, he has. You know why? He is going to miss out on having a relationship with his wonderful daughter. £1200 a year will not break you, yes every penny counts but he will eventually pay the price when you daughter does not want to know him when she is older.
She was as you say the result of a fling, he never wanted a bbay by the sound of it. It is hard now, but children grow so quickly, school days will be here before you know it and you can work and build a good life for the two of you.
Meanwhile, do you go to toddler groups in the area? Friendships mean support, can you move nearer family? Any practical way of making life better for both of you?
Hang on in there, I am sure you are doing great for your child.

Chocolatteaddict1 Thu 25-Feb-16 13:36:48

OP fuck him and his £100 a month.

You will get by.

You sound just what that little girl needs - a loving nurturing mother. I have a 2 and half year old dd so I know how hurt I would be if her df didn't want to know. Why do these animals not want to know their beautiful little children.

I raised dd1 for 15 years, 10 of those on benifits and we scraped by. One day you will look at your dd and know that the lovely child infrint if you is all your own hard work. Dd1 works in law now so me being a single mother and skint did not hinderance her at all.

Dig deep, cuddle baby and pull yourself together (in a nice way)

Fuck him. He ain't worth shit to her.

flowers xx

QuiteLikely5 Thu 25-Feb-16 13:47:45

Op what he has done by abandoning his child is awful but can I ask you to look at this objectively......

If the CSA have dropped your money he obviously was paying you extra.........you say that he wasn't reliable though with the previous arrangement so at least now he will be........

You must have thought he earned more than he did and it has backfired?

A lot of women do what you did and end up worse off if the gather them decides to scrap the private arrangement and pay the lesser amount

Re your dd having a father, sometimes it is truly a blessing when a parent is absent.

Why aren't you claiming benefits? Where are you family?

Lweji Thu 25-Feb-16 13:56:26

If he was becoming unreliable, you might end up getting nothing anyway, and he could be struggling now. Do you know much about his actual situation?

But, going through the CMS you could ask for regular revisions and he could end up paying more again if he earns more.

So, I think it was a necessary and good thing you did. Definitely don't beat yourself.

As for his messages, at this stage, I'd tell him not to contact you and I'd block him. No need for him to harass you.

justfornow25022016 Thu 25-Feb-16 14:41:15

Grumpy and Chocolate thank you, your posts made me cry too sad but I know that you are right and I have to keep going and support my DD with everything I still have. I like hearing stories of other LPs who have turned things around and things have turned out ok.

Quite and Lweji it wasn't about 'more' money, that's the conclusion he's jumped to too but it's not true and it feels unfair that he's saying it because it's not true. I just wanted communication and to know when he would pay so I could budget. I haven't had anything to do with the csa before so maybe misunderstood how they would handle this and didn't foresee it blowing up in my face.

What feels the most unfair is the way he's taken this opportunity to tell me how angry he is, to tell me how much he's struggling, to tell me I'm a bad person - when I have about 3 years worth of anger that hasn't had any outlet and I just have to suck that up daily, and I have financed everything else to do with my daughter and been 'there' for/to do everything she ever needs. I could have said so much to him over the past few years but have bitten my tongue in the interest of DD. Things like him telling me how he's had to cut his social life back to 4 nights a week and only go overseas a few times a year, when I haven't been out of the house for a night out once in years. Our lives just don't compare. It bugs me that we were both equally responsible for the pregnancy, but he could just leave and not have to make a decision, and can pay £10/week and I have to shoulder absolutely everything else for 20 years. And put up with peoples constant assumptions and prejudices about me as a single mother, when he doesn't face any of those despite being the one who does no caring for DD and is absent.

Grumpyoldblonde Thu 25-Feb-16 14:54:15

It is unfair, but you are railing at the tide, you won't change it. He will one day be a lonely old man and you will be the Mum who, despite the struggles your daughter looks up to, loves and admires and you in turn will feel proud of you both.
I would say you do need some kind of support, be that friends or family, seek it if you can, even a cup of coffee twice a week and a moan will keep you sane.
Really, this man will never step up or understand your life now, try to let it go for your own sake. Much, much easier said than done I know. I wish you all the best and much peace for your and your girl.

Grumpyoldblonde Thu 25-Feb-16 14:58:07

sorry for all those typo's - and I went a bit hippyish there!

bimandbam Thu 25-Feb-16 15:04:14

Firstly why aren't you claiming benefits? If you are entitled to them then get a claim in straight away. Don't let stigma stop you getting help while you need it. Put your pride in your pocket and ask for help.

Secondly it's much better to know what you are getting in and budget rather than be guessing. Look at it a positive way.

Thirdly he is a dickhead. Nothing you can do about that now. Let the csa deal with him and don't contact him again.

Chin up love. It gets easier. And if you are entitled to some benefits she should get 15 hours a week nursery so you can use that time to have a bit of a break. Maybe do a college course or just drink a coffee in peace.

I was a single parent for 2 years and my ex was a complete nobber. We got by and me and dd got ourselves on our feet. I noe have a lovely dp and a ds too. It gets easier I.promise.

tribpot Thu 25-Feb-16 15:09:49

Stop trying to be reasonable with him. Is he a reasonable person? No he isn't. You don't owe him any kind of explanation.

You know the saying a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush? You aren't 100 quid worse off because you had no certainty that money was ever going to arrive. He was becoming more and more unreliable, that's the exact reason you took the action you did. None of us have a crystal ball but my feeling is you're probably better off than you would have been in six months' time if you'd done nothing.

Of course, it was very wrong of you to steal his sperm and use it to impregnate yourself .. what do you mean, that isn't what happened? So he willingly had sex and presumably knew enough of biology to understand what may happen as a result of that? Well, here we are. You father a child, you pay (a token sum) for that child.

I wouldn't bother trying to create a relationship between them, it will be far worse for your dd if she meets him and he feigns interest for a bit and then disappears again.

I have a friend who's in a very similar situation to you except that her ds is now 11. Over the years she has made her peace with the situation and in fact has gone on to meet a far more worthy bloke and have a lovely dd with him. She likes it when we occasionally talk about it because I have not had to make my peace with it and so get really angry every time and tell her the same thing I am telling you: I don't understand how anyone can live with themselves for abandoning a child. He is an unspeakable shitbag.

Peppaismyhomegirl Thu 25-Feb-16 15:11:52

Are you claiming benefits? I was in your position and they are a god send. I worked part time and claimed working tax credit and I was perfectly fine: I didn't need his money. Good luck. You will do it!

Atenco Thu 25-Feb-16 15:14:53

Firstly why aren't you claiming benefits? If you are entitled to them then get a claim in straight away. Don't let stigma stop you getting help while you need it. Put your pride in your pocket and ask for help

This

I totally understand your rage, been there, bought the T-shirt.

Is there still much of a stigma about being a single parent? I haven't lived in the UK for yonks, but I brought my child up alone in Ireland and didn't notice any stigma myself.

niceupthedance Thu 25-Feb-16 15:19:31

The best advice I can give you (as above) is to try and make peace with yourself about the situation. People are selfish, there ain't a fat lot you can do about it except put strategies in place to make your life better.

I was in your shoes exactly. DS is now 5 and I'm about to qualify after going to uni (extra benefits for lone parents studying including childcare grants). My son's dad hasn't paid a penny for over four years. Fuck these kind of men, they aren't going to enjoy their children for years to come. Their loss.

Peppaismyhomegirl Thu 25-Feb-16 15:20:34

I didn't feel much stigma as a single parent. Infact, I'm married again, DH has a very good job and we live very comfortably. I get more stigma for not working and being a sahm than I did as a working (part time) single parent, but that's a whole different thread!
If you make an appointment with the local large job center, they will go through all your options. They were amazing and really helped me when I felt like you, had recently been through trauma and felt totally overwhelmed. It gets so much better, I promise

wotoodoo Thu 25-Feb-16 15:37:10

I think you sound like a wonderful mummy, you have a wonderful little girl who is worth more than all the jewels,money, valuables in the world and you don't have to have that horrible and mean person in your life!

When you stop crying op I hope you can smile because he has lost out big time and you are the luckiest one.

flowers

IdStillRatherBeKnitting Thu 25-Feb-16 15:59:49

Please do apply for benefits if you are entitled to them. I didn't, for two years...ended up losing three stone as I couldn't afford to eat as well as the DD's. Swallowed my pride, and now get child tax credit. I look forward to the day I no longer need to claim, but right now, I do.

My ex and I are still on a private arrangement, but I usually have to ask him each month, which is shit. I am 8 years in, another 10 to go. But I have my wonderful DD's, and I don't have to share them as ex walked away to start a new family abroad.

Can you just let it go, and accept that he doesn't want contact, and live your life? The csa will sort the money from here, and you don't need to look back, and enjoy your dd - honestly it is his loss. flowers

Chocolatteaddict1 Thu 25-Feb-16 16:24:42

Ah the bollocks he is posting to you is what he really feels inside about himself. He must feel like an absolute bastard over the way he has treated you both but he will tell you and himself it's all your fault- because your nasty. Boo hoo.

He really has done your dd a real big favour staying away from her. She doesn't need arseholes like him around her and neither do you!

The CS is really easy to manipulate. They are shit. If he can afford to go on holidays abroad he should be able to pay the £10 a week. I'd transfer that money straight in to a savings account and watch it grow.

You will be ok op. Have you got RL support? Why can't you talk to anybody about it?

AutumnLeavesArePretty Thu 25-Feb-16 18:26:31

If it was a fling, then there was no relationship to leave. He had no choice in you deciding to go ahead with the pregnancy. What support did you realistically expect other than financial?

It would be nice if he paid more but as you chose to use the CMS he can chose to just pay the minimum.

You can't force him to see her, it's upto him. He may regret it later in life but that's his choice.

justfornow25022016 Thu 25-Feb-16 18:50:49

Thank you everyone, I feel like I've spent the whole day crying and reading what you've put helps. Have taken note of all your advice xx

Chocolatteaddict1 Thu 25-Feb-16 18:59:02

flowers

You will be ok just

justfornow25022016 Thu 25-Feb-16 19:07:25

Autumn no it wasn't a relationship, but when I found out I was pregnant I did tell him and ask to sit down so we could both discuss and decide what to do. He didn't do that, just went silent and moved jobs/cities. He left me to make the decision when I would have gladly made it together. I was completely on my own because I didn't tell anyone because I didn't know what to do about the pregnancy and didn't want the whole world to know in case I chose to end it. In the end I was such a wreck it wasn't a decision, more of a non decision, the days/weeks just came and went and I wasn't in any good state of mind. I don't regret DD at all, but saying that I had the power in choosing to go ahead with the pregnancy doesn't give the correct picture. As a man, he able to 'not' make a decision and just hope it would go away. As a woman, I had to live with 'it' inside my body and not making a decision led to a baby. I think a late term abortion would have made me suicidal, especially given the emotional state I was in and that I was unsupported/alone.

He also had a choice at the point we conceived, as he was not wanting to use any contraception. I actually took the morning after pill but it didn't work, I was shocked/reeling when I found out I was pregnant 6 weeks later. I was so upset at the doctor's, the doctor had to leave the room to collect herself. The DF didn't get to see any of that, as I was quite composed when I told him, and I've never actually told him much of what I've been through in pregnancy, birth or raising DD alone. It wasn't like I was trying to become a single mother from a fling, who sane person would choose that as their life?

Yes I have asked him for financial support, I think that's fair. And yes he can choose to pay what the csa suggests but I just hoped he would reconsider and pay what he had been paying until now - around £33/week. Life with DD costs around £250/week. He's now paying about £10/week. I'm covering the rest, and my entire life is devoted to raising DD.

I agree with the folks above who point out that things could be worse and maybe I have to be grateful for his lack of interest, and in some ways hope it continues because the last thing I want is to have DD messed around as she grows up.

justfornow25022016 Thu 25-Feb-16 19:08:31

Thank you chocolate

Chocolatteaddict1 Thu 25-Feb-16 19:12:16

just how are you money wise ? Are you still working ? Are you claiming what you are entitled too?

justfornow25022016 Thu 25-Feb-16 20:40:39

chocolate I've been living on savings for the last 2 years, had put away a sum for a house deposit before I was pregnant. I was really careful with money my whole life, this sum is my pocket money from when I was little, money from part-time jobs and then from proper jobs. It's going down fast but is not quite at the point where benefits kick in. I know that puts me in a better financial position than a lot of other LPs, it's a bit sad for me because I worked so hard to have it and once it's gone I can't see it being easy to build it back up. I get child benefit and tax credits. I should be starting a job soon and that will cover most bills, though anything else will still need to come from the savings.

As for anyone in RL to talk to, everyone seems so busy and the people I know are mostly other mums who work/have new babies and enough going on, hardly any time to spare. I don't want to be the new acquaintance who expects to turn up, and dump TMI/burdens/negativity on them.

I'd love to hear how the other LPs on here got back on their feet, found a lovely DP/DH and so on. I'm not ready to date yet would probably just cry into my wine but good to hear it can be done and have a happy ending xx

DaemonPantalaemon Thu 25-Feb-16 21:11:18

This is upsetting but think about it this way: if you had wanted a termination, there is no way he could have forced you to have a baby. By the same token, as you chose to have the baby, there is no way you can force him to love it or see it as his daughter. You can no more force him to be a father than he could have forced you to be a mother.

Yes, he is losing out, but that is his choice, The only thing he is obliged to do under the law is to pay the minimum ordered by CSA. And that is really all you can ask. Don't spend too much time being angry and bitter over a situation you cannot change. Instead, rejoice in your child, and do the very best that you can do for her.

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