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Telling a four year old that daddy is moving out...

(12 Posts)
Ringonrighthand Sun 17-Jul-16 08:59:53


My first post here and I am looking for advice please if anyone has been through the same?

Been with my now ex partner for 8 years, we have a four year old daughter whom we both adore. We have split up because he promised marriage, proposed, booked it etc then told me it wasn't what he wanted after all. I've been heartbroken and distraught but I am strong and will get through it.

My main concern and upset is for my daughter. We have told her we are not getting married anymore and that we are just friends but we both love her. The house is mine and in my name only (thankfully) and he currently sleeps on the sofa and keeps clothes in her room so that I have my bedroom to myself.

She seems to have accepted it but obviously asks lots of questions, the problem is there is another month until he moves out as the flat he is going to isn't available yet and she keeps asking why daddy has to go and saying she is sad and doesn't want him to leave. It upsets me to see/hear it and the timing is so bad as she is starting school and leaving nursery a week then two weeks after he goes. We are both keeping things amicable (I grin a bear it A LOT!!) but any advice on the right things to say to reassure her please? Thank you if you've read this far x

Ringonrighthand Sun 17-Jul-16 20:11:28

Did anyone have any advice please?

MaisieDotes Sun 17-Jul-16 20:18:08

Sorry this is happening flowers

All you can do is keep reassuring her that you both love her very much, as you have been doing.

Children are amazingly adaptable and you'll probably be surprised by how well your DD takes this in her stride once the break is actually made.

Yes, there is a lot of grinning and bearing it. Unfortunately being a lone parent has a large element of that. But when you are alone don't be afraid to feel sad for yourself and the loss of the future you thought you would have. Think of and care for yourself too flowers

Rowanhart Sun 17-Jul-16 20:23:30

It's a lot of change at once isn't it. It would be good if he could sleep on a friend or family members sofa so that your DD can be in her new routine properly for school starting.

I'm really sorry for you and think you're doing brilliantly well.

Ringonrighthand Sun 17-Jul-16 21:40:29

Thank you both for replying, I really wish he could/would go somewhere else but apparently he can't hmm

Yes I keep reassuring her we both love her, I have told her current nursery and the school she will be starting and we talk quite openly to her about it and answer any questions she might have.

I do feel like I can't quite grieve the life I thought I was getting, not until he has gone properly. Just counting down the days really sad

Rowanhart Sun 17-Jul-16 22:27:06

If its your house your name, you don't have to give him the option?

Not sure why your allowing all on his terms?

Ringonrighthand Sun 17-Jul-16 22:48:39

You are right, and I could go down the nasty route, change the locks etc but he is my daughters dad and I don't want to put her through it. At the moment we are pretty amicable, just getting on with it, he's like a lodger in a way and I know there is an end in sight. My feelings for him have changed so much, I don't feel I love him anymore and things were so tense and awful between us towards the end that I'm pretty relieved it's over. I just want her life to be happy, hence why I am so certain it's over as we can't make each other happy but I just want to do the right thing by her and make sure I am reassuring her as much as I can x

SandyY2K Sun 17-Jul-16 23:01:21

I agree that reassuring her you both love her and that daddy will still see her even though he'll be living somewhere else is all you can do.

It's hard to explain anymore at this age really.

As long as she has 2 loving parents, she'll be fine in the end.

When she's a lot older, you can explain further.

ConcreteUnderpants Sun 17-Jul-16 23:16:55

I think you are doing great in the circumstances.

Young children are remarkably resilient. She is very lucky that you are both amicable and reassuring.

When i was younger, my best friend was initially upset when her parents split. But soon became used to it and it quickly became the 'norm'.

Keep doing what you are doing. Love her and be honest about the situation.

isamonster Sun 17-Jul-16 23:21:38

I've been in a similar situation - I spent 6 weeks sharing a house with ex and dd who nearly 4 after he'd told me he didn't want to be with me anymore. In the end he decided he'd changed his mind and wanted to try again. When I said it was too late we argued and I finally chucked him out. Better all round especially for dd. Get him to leave. The longer it drags on the worse it is.

Paleninteresting Sun 17-Jul-16 23:22:00

My DD was 3 when daddy left and a year is a long time but this is what worked (I think for us). A future focus, a positive description of how it will be when daddy moves out, particularly if he is starting to imagine this too. I know this sounds tricky but the idea of a new routine with mummy and daddy can be interesting at her age.
A regular new routine of good things: movie nights, long lies with mummy and events that she can choose.
A focus on school is a plus, building her skills and positive view of school means you can focus on that as a distraction.
Reliable and predictable behaviour from all.
Hugs for you, you and she can do this.

Ringonrighthand Mon 18-Jul-16 07:41:57

Thank you all so much, it's helpful and reassuring to hear people who have got through it. I wouldn't take him back if he asked and I don't think he has any interest in that anyway. She is excited for sleepovers in his new flat and for starting her new school, we've been getting uniform and talking about it lots, she can't wait!

Will keep on going, week days are much easier as he gets to and goes to work then me and dd do our own thing, my parents and friends are amazing so I have tons of support. I can and will get through it! Thank tiy all again x

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