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Ex driving me mad

(16 Posts)
Bloodybloodyhell Mon 29-Feb-16 20:11:28

We've been separated for 4 years. And have a super little (DC) who we both love to bits.

But Ex has always been SHIT at making arrangements / sticking to them to look after DC.

He says its because of his job. He does work odd hours and is away from (his) home for a few nights a week. (Not same ones each week)

Because of this, we've never, ever had an EOW arrangement or similar. He says its impossible. He won't even commit to every third weekend, or just committing to one night a week.

So it's all ad-hoc and last minute. DC is therefore with me most of the time. Which is fine. And I bend over backwards to accommodate Ex seeing DC when he can.

But last week, we had a dreadful row about it all, after he suddenly requested seeing DC when I had already made plans.

I went crazy at him. And now feel terribly guilty.

I've just had enough.

But really, I'm after advice on how we move forward from here. How do you make arrangements with an Ex who won't commit and wants to keep things "spontaneous"?

TheNaze73 Mon 29-Feb-16 20:24:54

I think he's being totally unreasonable. It's not fair on yourself or the child. There's a time & a place for spontaneity but, child care arrangements cannot be managed like that. Have you explained & spelt out just how difficult he's making things for all parties?

Robotgirl Mon 29-Feb-16 20:32:17

Hi bloodybloodyhell
How old is your child?
I'm in a similar position & will be lurking here to see what comes up. It's a nightmare!
My ex is 43 going on 16 & has pretty much admitted his younger GF (of a year) takes priority over DD. He hasn't had DD overnight since October & I instigate everything....
DD is 4 now & starting to ask when she's going to see/stay with daddy. I asked him to let me know dates but no reply... Do you feel slightly maddened? DD needs her dad and I need a break sometimes !

Bloodybloodyhell Mon 29-Feb-16 20:38:54

Yes, I have been saying the same bloody thing for 4 years. That I'm delighted for him to see his child as often as he wants - he just needs to let me know in advance.

Basically, he just wants to see him when it suits him - and often at the last minute, just because he has nothing else to do.

I have pleaded / argued / been very reasonable for years. He just takes this piss.

I don't doubt at all that he loves our child. He just wants to parachute in for a few hours here and there, when it suits him. And not commit in advance. He always says "but I don't know what I'll be up to - or if something will come up that night / weekend, so I can't be sure".

Bloodybloodyhell Mon 29-Feb-16 20:42:04

Robot - maddened doesn't even come close at the moment.

I completely lost my shit with him the other day - properly yelled - and ended up crying in a public place, because he just doesn't get it.

He was cross because I'd made arrangemebts for this coming weekend - to include DC, as he'd told me he was going away. Then he cancelled his trip - and wanted to have DC! Tells me I'm being unfair.

He too is 43 going on about 14. A proper Peter Pan. If it wasn't for DC, I really, really wish I had never met him.

Bogeyface Mon 29-Feb-16 20:45:42

I would say that you need to get official now.

You have tried nice, you have tried amicable and all that has happened is he has taken the piss. You need to get a solicitor to write to him requesting that you both attend mediation to get access sorted and set down in stone.

He wont like it but frankly I dont see what other choice you have.

Bloodybloodyhell Mon 29-Feb-16 20:48:37

I had really, really been hoping to avoid that, Bogey. But you may be right. I know there are two sides to every story - and he thinks I'm the problem. But surely, SURELY, just waiting to know in advance what is happening - and when, for all of our sakes, is not too much to ask.

Robot - I'm sorry youre going through similar xx

balia Mon 29-Feb-16 21:01:04

My ex used to be like this, unfortunately we didn't have a happy ending as all the 'other things' that might 'come up' got more and more often and eventually DD got tired of being the very last in a long line of priorities.

However, what did work in terms of my sanity, for a while, was to have my own boundaries and plans. I realised I wasn't making plans myself with DD until the last minute in case he rang. So I would sit down each month and work out what I wanted to do, what I wanted to book, what I could be flexible with. Then if he rang I stuck to the plan. If I had something booked I offered an alternative, if it was a flexible thing I said I'd move it, but bottom line, I had my own boundaries. The first time I said a flat no he was really shocked, but he was very used to getting his own way generally. It allowed me to be a lot calmer and feel much less resentful.

Robotgirl Tue 01-Mar-16 09:11:29

Hi bloodybloodyhell
How are you doing?
I have to see ex later to 'suggest dates' again when he would like to see his daughter.
Usually he either ignores my texts/emails or when I ask him to let me know face to face he says 'I'll let you know' ....yeah right.
These approaches aren't working - any suggestions? Mediation might be way forward but I too didn't want to go down that road (oh, & when I suggested before, he Said 'my mate at work reckons mediation is a load of shit' ...yep, he's a teenager in a man's body hmm

Lweji Tue 01-Mar-16 09:44:31

I've had informal arrangements and regretted it.

Then, I dictated how much previous warning I needed and in what days and times contact could happen, and things are so much smoother and hassle free.

I'm still fairly flexible, within reason, but if it can't be, then it can't be and that's the end of it till next time.

Cabrinha Tue 01-Mar-16 11:34:02

Well, bollocks to him loving them to bits - love is a verb and all that.

My child arrangements are nominally 4 days me, 3 days her father. But because of my job (frequent travel abroad) our actual arrangements have to be flexible, and we make it work very well.

I think you need to have a basic framework, and be flexible for variations around it.

I work away Sun-Thu EOW, as a basic pattern. Reality is some times it's 2 on the bounce the 2 in the UK, or I'll go to another location and only be gone Tue-Thu.

So we have a basic rule: if I'm home, she's with me. We use a shared online calendar and if he wants a particular date either with or without her - in it goes. I do the same. Sometimes we text at the last minute to change it - that can be her request too.

There is no reason he can't do EOW and a day in the week where that day is decided the previous Sunday night. Or whatever variation. He's taking the piss. It's perfectly possible to have a variable arrangement that is also reliable and frequent.

VimFuego101 Tue 01-Mar-16 11:36:47

How far in advance does he need to know his shifts? He should work with you then to arrange visits.

Cabrinha Tue 01-Mar-16 11:37:06

Re the short notice changes: if it's leisure, then we accommodate if we can but no bad feelings when we can't. But if it's my work (pretty rare) I do expect him to reschedule anything else. Work is necessary, and the travel is directly a result of the divorce which was his (lying cheating bastard!) fault! So he just has to suck that up - but it is quite rare.

Bogeyface Tue 01-Mar-16 14:05:43

when I suggested before, he Said 'my mate at work reckons mediation is a load of shit' ...

Meaning that his mate at work had to do mediation for a divorce and actually had to act in an adult and responsible manner. Asshats like that hate having to actually step up!

Bogeyface Tue 01-Mar-16 14:11:28

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Bogeyface Tue 01-Mar-16 14:38:35

Sorry, posted above on the wrong thread. Will report blush

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