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Should I let ds be NC with his dad?

(6 Posts)
saffynool Sun 04-Sep-16 11:37:11

Will try to keep this brief!

Xh and I split up when ds was a year old, due to xh's drinking and abusive behaviour. Since then, however, I have always tried to facilitate as much contact as possible between ds and his father.

For the first few years this worked ok, with ds spending weekends at his dad's and them having a pretty good relationship. In hindsight however much of his stability was down to xh's then-girlfriend, who (thankfully) doted on ds as well.

That relationship broke up about 4 years ago and xh went off the rails, ending up in rehab for three months just before ds was due to start secondary school. Since then, xh has been much more erratic, although still keen to see ds. Since xh's rehab I have always been very clear with ds that it was his choice whether or not to see his dad. Ds has still spent fairly regular time with him but it has been less consistent, however ds never showed any signs of not wanting to see his dad when possible.

About two months ago it became very clear that xh was very bad again in terms of alcohol and substance abuse. I had to call an ambulance for him as he was threatening suicide. I stopped contact with ds immediately and talked to him about the fact that his dad was having problems again (obviously didn't tell him about the suicide threats etc).

Xh was then signed off work for six months and has returned to his country of origin to try to get clean with family support.

The issue is that ds has not wanted to contact his dad since he left the country. He's not been angry or upset, but has just refused any offers to talk to his dad, text him etc. In all honesty part of me is quite relieved, but it is really unlike ds and I am worried that he may regret not maintaining contact with his dad - who is a useless father in many ways but is not a bad person deep down.

My instinct is to leave it and let ds do what he wants. I've told him he can ask me for his dad's contact details anytime he wants. But is this the right thing to do? It's a very sudden break after years of pretty regular contact and I don't want ds to end up regretting it. I don't think he's hiding any upset from me but I can't be absolutely sure. I worry about him so much and regret al the crap he's been through over the years with me picking such a loser as his father.

It's ok to let ds make these choices now, isn't it? He's 13 btw.

jeaux90 Sun 04-Sep-16 11:43:17

Yes I think it's fine, my DD is no contact with her narc dad. The one thing I do keep up is the relationship with the exh's family as they are lovely. If you think it's right and that is what you ds wants then it's probably right. Besides that kind of influence.....better off without. Xxx

Sn0tnose Sun 04-Sep-16 13:49:48

I think it's fine.

I stopped contact with my father when I was eleven. My decision completely and I've never regretted it. My mum always made it very clear that she'd support me having contact if that was what I wanted, so I never felt that it would be upsetting her if I'd decided to try and re-establish contact.

And I'm totally sure that he isn't blaming you for your choice in men, so don't be so hard on yourself.

eyemonster12 Sun 04-Sep-16 14:06:08

I had very similar situation with my (substance fan) father, saw him sporadically, maybe a couple of times a year, until I was about ten (when he remembered/could be bothered/whatever or when he needed money, or when he needed driving to the hospital etc etc etc) then I think he went to prison when I was about 11/12 and I didn't really see him again after that. It has been presented to me as my choice since, although I don't honestly remember making it. I certainly didn't ever ask to see him, and I didn't miss him, and I knew my mother had his contact details if I wanted them. I saw him at his mother's funeral when I was 20, about 10 years ago, and haven't seen or heard from him since.

You've given your son the option of asking for his contact details, and you haven't imposed no-contact. I don't think there's a lot else you can do. I think your son has probably made quite an instinctive decision based on how he feels about his dad, and it feels like you've handled it perfectly.

saffynool Sun 04-Sep-16 14:26:03

Thanks all - it's good to know that others have been in the same position as ds. I do worry about what will happen if/when his dad returns, as I'm sure he will be very keen to see ds but I guess we cross that bridge when we come to it.

Xh texted me the other week to ask why ds hadn't been in contact. He had been texting ds's old phone which is broken. Ds now has a new phone and I went to give him his dad's number and he said he didn't want it. So I guess xh will be in contact again soon wanting to chase up contact, but I will just have to be honest and say that ds is not wanting that atm..

It's so sad, but ds has a stable life here with me and dp (with whom he gets on v well) and really he would be better off in the long run without the influence of a drinking, gambling, drug-taking dad... It would be great if he decided never to come back to the UK tbh...

ImperialBlether Sun 04-Sep-16 16:11:22

Would your partner want to adopt your son?

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