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My ex, my DP and my injured DD(34 Posts)
I can't see the woods through the trees with this one, I feel like I just need others' opinions and maybe advice on my position on things...
I will try and be as succinct and factual as possible while giving a bit of background.
I left ex-DH 3 years ago. For a number of reasons...porn addiction and no sex life, he was getting more and more controlling and emotionally abusive. I was very unhappy.
He was devastated and still hasn't moved on really, although he is a lot happier in himself lately since getting a new job and making new friends. We have co-parented DD, who is 4, pretty well. He has her two nights a week, although his access is becoming increasing sporadic and disorganised due to this new job and a new found social life. The main disagreements we have had concern my new DP.
I met DP a year after the split. He is so lovely and I am very happy, he would do anything for us.
Because of X's emotional state and also because I wanted to be absolutely certain, I didn't introduce DD and DP for nearly a year. They are now very close and we will all move in together in the summer.
DH has been angry at the idea of DD spending time with this "other man". We had a huge blow up when DP took us both on holiday in October. EX and DP have never met but DH speaks of him with absolute disdain.
DD, DP and I were all home last night. They were playing in the living room, she loves playing quite rufty-tufty games with him and likes him to chase her and tickle her and throw her about a bit.
He was being a monster trying to eat her feet. At one point he grabbed her leg and pulled her to him so he could eat her foot. Her top rode up and she got a carpet burn on her back.
She didn't tell us about it until a while later when we were eating, and said her back hurt. I had a look and saw these three patches of friction burn going up her spine. I took her for her bath and put some cream on them. Apart from them being a little sore for a while, she didn't mention them again. I checked them this morning and when I touched them she said they didn't hurt anymore. They looked red though and to be honest, pretty bad.
Then I took her to her dad's as she is with him for the Easter weekend because next week we are going on a family holiday. With my parents, siblings, nieces, nephews and DP.
Knowing his attitude to DP I thought it best to tell him what had happened before DD told him and he would be angry with me for not telling him first. I knew he'd be annoyed but he was very very angry. I can see his point in some ways...it's not nice that your child has been hurt and it was careless.
Although I wish it hadn't happened and that he had been more careful, I am not annoyed with DP myself because I know it came from a place of fun and play and that he would do absolutely nothing to hurt her purposefully. He feels awful that he was too rough and I know it won't happen again. DD is completely unaffected, she laughed this morning when I was looking at them and said "it was funny though"
Anyway, DH says I have shown a lack of duty and care. And that DP has too. He is now saying he doesn't want DD to go on holiday with DP this week and that DP is never to be left alone with her.
I have said I think he is overreacting. He asked how I would overreact if he had a girlfriend and my girlfriend hurt DD?
I don't know if i have a leg to stand on. I am obviously biased. Firstly, how much of a point does he have? I am really bad at arguing with him.
Your ex DH us being an utterly unreasonable prick... He has no point at all
Ha! itsall, thanks! The speed and brevity of that message made me smile. I just find I doubt myself so much when it comes to ExH
I think you should ignore your ex.
I also think your dp should stop the rough and tumble games. They pretty much always end in tears, IME
He has no point. Your child had a minor accident at home. As happens to every child, usually on multiple occasions throughout their childhood. There's nothing there to suggest abuse or neglect.
Maybe give him some time to cool down, and try to discuss it again. But do not concede any sort of change in arrangements that you're happy with. I sincerely doubt he'd get anywhere if he tried to take it further.
Accidents happen. Of course you could keep your child sitting in front of the tv and never doing anything and you might minimise the risk of an accident, but your ex is just using this as a way of getting at you. I love the scars I have from my childhood as they bring back good memories.
True anyfucker I have said that and he agrees
There is no cause for concern here, other than a controlling exH who needs to STFU
I'm relieved that is everyone's opinion so far. I did think some people might be appalled that I could let that happen.
I always usually avoid getting in arguments with ExH face to face and now make a habit of doing these things by email if they ever come up because I find myself getting completely railroaded and unable to stand up for myself, even though it never really happens with anyone else.
I couldn't do that this time though and came out of it very badly and unsure of myself.
He has no point, it's a nothing. Honestly, it's no big deal at all.
You're doing fine op.
There will always be accidents- and if you are with her more then inevitably they will come under your watch.
I have to say I probably wouldn't have mentioned it. It's a tribute to your honesty that you did- shame ex didn't see it like that.
I think xp and dp should meet . I would want to meet anyone coming into contact with my children if I was separated. Your X might of built an image of your DP into a monster and that will continue unless they meet .It should be on neutral ground .
Everyone is right- he's just being a dick. If he'd done the same would you be angry? Would he even be this angry if it was your fault rather than your DP's?
Also AnyFucker is right anout rough play. I've been in the somewhat mortifying position this week of having to explain a nasty carpet burn on my 1 year old's face to nursery after rough tickling got out of hand . Will be reining it in...
Actually I think your ex has a little bit of a point here. It wasn't an accident that couldn't be anticipated. If you play rough with children there's always the possibility they will get hurt, especially an adult playing with a small child. And as he said, I suspect you wouldn't be as forgiving and reasonable if it was his new partner who had hurt her, however accidental it was. However, it shouldn't mean that your dd is kept away from your partner, that's your call and he is being unreasonable about that.
Kids have accidents. Mine broke her arm and jaw on separate occasions under fathers care. Shit happens. But they were accidents . Arseholes are arseholes. I've never thrown it in his face but when she fell in the river (I jumped in after her) he tried to have the kids taken away.
Bert DP has offered to meet exH, exH wants nothing to do with it. To be honest, I also don't want them to meet, at least not yet, I know exH will be an arsehole to him and I also know he will then pick at him to me after that and I dont want to hear those things and I don't really want to subject DP to that before it's absolutely necessary.
I agree peas, I think because he's relatively inexperienced with kids other than being the fun uncle to a couple of boisterous nephews he gets carried away, and he's a bit of a novelty to her because of the rest of her family are all pretty small and he's a big bloke, like the BFG but he's learnt his lesson.
Last year we had an awful incident, DD and I were making up a dance routine and I swung er by her arms and actually dislocated her elbow!! Can you believe that's apparently one of the most common injuries in the under fives??!! I was horrified and so upset. Surprisingly ex-H was understanding and when he mentioned that today and also highlighted a couple of bruises shed picked up while with him, he said it's different because we are her parents and love her and accidents do happen but DP is an outsider and has "done" something to hurt his daughter. Couldn't really think of anything else to say at that point
I see what you're saying gracies. I see why he's annoyed that DD was hurt. If it happened at nursery for example, I'd want to know how.
I do disagree that I wouldn't be understanding or forgiving if he had a girlfriend and something happened. I am a much more reasonable person then he is. I actively want him to get a girlfriend and although I think he is an arse in many respects, we have actually always held each other in high regard as parents and if he deemed somebody fit to spend time with our daughter and believed something was an accident and told me about it, I would respect his judgement
The dislocated elbow thing happened to my DD too OP, DH and my DSS were swinging her between them while we were out shopping. We took her to hospital and I arrived panicking at A&E and told the receptionist I thought her arm was broken, she asked what happened and immediately said it would be dislocated, not broken, it really is so common even reception staff recognise it! As for your current situation you're already doing everything which should be done to prevent your DD from getting accidentally hurt again, your ex doesn't have a leg to stand on with the rest.
You are giving your ex way to much information. If you keep arming him with ammunition he will keep using it to manipulate you.
"She got a rug burn when we were playing. Here is the cream for it. I'll be by at 6pm tomorrow to pick her up." You owe him no further details.
It's fine I remember sheepishly explaining the carpet burns on ds's back from dragging him around the lounge whilst playing to his teacher in case she saw them when he changed for PE
Agree you are going OTT with the communication because you are a nice person trying to appease your grumpy ex because that's the habit we get it to with EA.
Keep up the email contact, for minimal communication sticking to facts dates etc to do with your daughter -carry on with your holiday plans & don't let him occupy your headspace.
He's not in the right, I hope you feel convinced about this.
I do agree that the ex and your new partner should have met, but I'm not entirely sure how, as it will be fraught with tension and ill will.
Especially now, when he's finally got some 'proof' to justify the (guilt fuelled) hatred... So basically, horrible for everyone.
It sounds like you could introduce him to an actual bonefide saint* and he'd still pin all the hatred and contempt and vileness he has inside on a perfect saintly man...
*except alive, not a ghost, a besainted-ghost-lover-man... Now, that would be weird!
If so, his dickishness could be fuelled in part by guilt/ shame/ the knowledge that he caused his family to have to leave to protect themselves from him. And that emotional load is probably going to come out as anger against anyone / everyone except himself (?).
People don't behave well when they are to blame, or they feel guilty, so I guess impotent rage doesn't seem too out of place here... Especially towards the man that supplanted him. The man you judged better than him (due to the whole, not addicted and abusiveness thing!) . The man who is sitting in 'his' spot in your house, and heart, and with his daughter.
He's worked himself up into a frenzy, determined to pull this other man down off his pedestal, and I suspect he really wants it to be true so he can feel better by comparison.
So now he can add self righteous anger and powerlessness to 'protect' his little girl to the list of unpleasantness fuelling him.
Ugly, ugly, emotions.
I wonder if your ex has the capacity for any self reflection? Would he ever take a look at himself and see what he's become? I suspect not, having met addicts and abusers before...
Many relationships fail because of compatibility or changing values, but he failed you and his child by being such an awful man in the relationship... Porn addiction, abusiveness, controlling... And now reducing contact because he prioritises socialising and going out more than being a parent to his daughter?! Not exactly the biography of a good man is it? You did well to walk away and make a better life for you and your dd. You made good decisions.
It's so hard when someone can pull you back into an unhealthy and powerless relationship dynamic. And he'll be using all the manipulation and power he ever had to try and control you again. Keep strong.
Hmmmmmm....maybe I do need to get myself more into the mindset of what happens on my watch generally is not something I need to discuss with him unless necessary.
I told him about it because if I didn't I knew she would and the fallout would be almighty.
When I first introduced DD and DP we had a day out somewhere and she told her dad about it excitedly and an almighty shitstorm erupted because I hadn't warned him
that introductions would mean spending "my daughter spending quality time and having days out with another man who is trying to be her father".
When it calmed down he told me hearing her mention his name is painful and he would appreciate a heads up. I've always made too many allowances for his cycles of depression and tried to make sure there's no come back on me for making it worse. It's been 3 years though, I really just want to go about my life not having to worry about his reactions to things. I know That's on me though isn't it.
I'm just rambling now and probably overthinking and making it deeper than it is
miscellaneous thank you. You've hit lots of nails in the head there.
At first he did a lot f self reflection and counselling but when he realised I wasn't coming back he quickly managed to figure out how I was to blame for the failure of our marriage.
And you know I wasn't perfect. And I do easily feel very guilty for his situation now.
On the surface, we run along ok with the co-parenting, although I do find myself accommodating him a lot at the same time as trying to fend off his periodic attempts to win 50:50 as I don't feel that would be in her best interests because of his living situation.
When you scratch the surface with things like this, I realise it still is and probably always will be one big fuck up.
I think you were right to tell him, if you hadn't your dd would have when he saw them and that would have made him worse.
rough games always end in tears imo, which is why I don't play them even though the dcs love it. Dp still does and then wonders why dcs are high as a kite etc
your ex sounds like a twat, I'd just ignore him
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