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Father's Day Card upset

(20 Posts)
MagnumPieEye Mon 19-Jun-17 11:07:45


Not sure whether to be upset about this.

I'm recently separated from my ex-H and we have 50/50 custody of our 9yo DS. I found a Father's Day card today that DS made in school saying that he couldn't wait until ex-H came back.

I thought me and DS got on well and we've always had a better and more easy-going relationship than he and ex-H do. So I'm a bit upset about this.

Should I mention it to DS? I don't want to make him feel bad and he's been really accepting of the separation so far and seems (or seemed) to be adjusting well.

Changedname3456 Mon 19-Jun-17 11:15:55

He loves his Dad. It doesn't mean he doesn't love you and it should never come down to "our child should love me more than XP" which is a little how your post reads.

If you think he's harbouring the idea that this split is just temporary then have you (or your exH) given him reason to think so? Perhaps you've tried to soften the separation a little too much?

MagnumPieEye Mon 19-Jun-17 11:22:49

No, I'm pretty sure he realises we've split for good.

I'm just surprised as when we were together, I did most of the parenting stuff. Ex-h would avoid family time, working until DS went to bed for example. Maybe the split is forcing him to step up to the plate. Which is good but this still hurts.

Aperolspritzer123 Mon 19-Jun-17 11:31:24

Hi OP, I totally get why this would sting a bit!! I have an 11yo ds in similar circs - if it were me I would have a chat with him about it, make it clear that he can talk to you without fear of upsetting you. Maybe it's a good thing as it might have given you a bit more insight than you thought.. and then you can reiterate that it won't happen and deal with it together??

isitjustme2017 Mon 19-Jun-17 11:42:53

Hi OP, I know it hurts a bit but please just forget it. My youngest DS had a rubbish relationship with his dad when he lived with us, never did anything with him or had much time for him. Now he's moved out DS often asks for him when he's crying!!

MagnumPieEye Mon 19-Jun-17 11:49:44

aperol DS isn't great at verbalising his feelings so thinking more on it, I'm not sure a direct talk would help. I'd be afraid it'd make him clam up.

isitjust eah, I think exH is probably trying harder to bond which is obviously good. But he doesn't tell me what they do when I'm not here so I feel like I'm cut off from half of DS's life.

Is it normal to want the other parent to let you know what they've been doing with DC?

Looneytune253 Mon 19-Jun-17 11:50:10

I don't understand? You're upset that your son made his dad a father's day card? Surely he can still do that and have you as his equal or even favourite parent. I'm not quite sure what you're upset about?

MagnumPieEye Mon 19-Jun-17 12:15:23

Looneytunes - I'm not upset he made him a Father's Day card at all. I'm upset that he wrote on it that he couldn't wait for him to come back. It makes me feel that he doesn't enjoy spending time with me.

MagnumPieEye Mon 19-Jun-17 12:20:27

It's also making me think he's not taking the separation as well as we thought he was.

Changedname3456 Mon 19-Jun-17 12:29:35

"But he doesn't tell me what they do"

Goes with the territory I'm afraid. I'm a father and only find out what the kids have done if I ask them. You then get into walking that fine line between genuine interest / having a conversation and feeling like what you're doing could be perceived as being nosy about ex (I'm not at all, but I'm very aware of the potential for it to look that way).

Unfortunately when you split with someone you do lose access to that part of your child(ren)s life. If you're really unlucky, or as most would call it, "born male," the chunks of their life you end up missing are much larger than 50%. Take it from me, that's a much shittier feeling.

I get the "I want Mum" thing occasionally when the DC are with me. Usually just after I've had to tell one of mine off! But then I know exW gets the reverse, which doesn't make it any harder to take. It always hurts a bit, even though you know they're not intending it to. Your exH will be getting the same, and feeling the same, as you on occasions.

pudding21 Mon 19-Jun-17 12:29:43

My 9 year old was sobbing in the car to me the other day because he didn't like what his Daddy (my ex) had said to him (he was angry about something) and that he wanted to live with me all the time. He said he doesn't want to be with his dad and that he knows why I left and how much happier I seem (amazing insight for a 9 year old)

10 minutes later he was saying how much he wanted us to get back together. The reason is he doesn't really like splitting his time, it makes him a bit confused at times.

How long have you been split? i think its natural for kids to want what they knew, even if it was dysfunctional and toxic.

Changedname3456 Mon 19-Jun-17 12:31:02

*easier to take!

MagnumPieEye Mon 19-Jun-17 12:36:58

Changedname - exactly - I don't want to seem nosy or like I'm checking up on exH but it feels weird not to be able to talk about what DS has been doing because I don't know.

pudding - we've only been split three months so I guess he needs time to adjust. He doesn't talk about it though. If I ask how he is, he just says 'fine'. His teacher and his best friend's mum are also keeping an eye on him and haven't noticed he's distressed or sad either.

bibliomania Mon 19-Jun-17 12:56:53

Hi OP, I mean this nicely, but the thing about the card is your issue, not your ds's. What is he going to write, "Daddy, I love you, but not quite as much as Mummy?"

On a personal level, of course it's hard. My dd rang her dad for father's day to tell her how much she loved him. Fucker never even called back.

MagnumPieEye Mon 19-Jun-17 13:45:16

God, biblio that's tough.

yeah, it is my issue. I need to get over myself, I think.

bibliomania Mon 19-Jun-17 13:47:22

You're allowed to hurt too. You just have to work hard to keep it away from your son's relationship with his father.

inkydinky Mon 19-Jun-17 14:16:39

It's not a reflection on your parenting. Honestly. My 9 year old wishes her Dad would come back. And that's despite us both having moved on with new partners. He lives with his and she spends a lot of time there. She knows that we are happier apart, but SHE would be happier if we were still together. She doesn't like having two lives and trying not to upset us both has caused her a LOT of upset as she has been wary of telling Dad that she's had a good time with me (and vice Versa) as she doesn't want to hurt anyone's feelings. This is absolutely not what I want, I'd be gutted if she was having a terrible time with her Dad. Please don't bring this up with him. It will only serve to tell him that he is wrong to miss his dad, and that he needs to be considering your feelings in his communications with him which isn't fair. I do understand your hurt, but this is about what he's missing, not a criticism of what he's got with you x

Ohyesiam Mon 19-Jun-17 14:36:16

This isn't about you op.
My dad was emotionally absent even before my patents split. So my picture of him in my mind was mostly fantasy, because I has filled in the bits he didn't do, and of course on my fantasy he was perfect. My more nuts and bolts relationship with my mum ( who I could rely on much more) was much less idealised.
When I became an adult and ended up with a psychologist, I was told this was classic.

So if your son wants his dad to to come back, it's to do all the stuff he never did, but should have been doing.

MagnumPieEye Mon 19-Jun-17 15:35:31

Thanks everyone.

I'm not going to say anything to DS. I picked him up from school and he's happy. He does seem reticent about telling me what he did all weekend but maybe it's like what inkydinky said re feeling guilty that he had a good time.

Isetan Mon 19-Jun-17 16:15:53

He's expressing a preference for a situation not a person. For him it would simply be more convenient having his Dad home than elsewhere, in fact his Dad might even be a better parent but the pull of the familiar set up is strong, even when the new relationship is more beneficial than the old.

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