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Yet another - am I being unreasonable thread, could still do with input though!(20 Posts)
Those of you who know me since dawn of Mumsnet will know that my ex-H had an affair, we tried to fix it, he couldn't leave the new woman alone, so 2.5yrs later we are now divorced.
Anyhow, he currently has the children every second weekend and he has recently starting to have them stay on Wednesday nights with him & his girlfriend. However, everytime this happens if I am not there in the morning (already left for work) he tells me how upset the children are that I wasn't there, or if I am there like I was this morning, there is great upset because my ds then doesn't want his father to take him to school but wants me: tears, etc etc
Anyhow, this morning I was at a loss for what to do in face of my son's tears, I tried to reassure him & tell him that it was a real treat to have daddy to take him to school, I tried to distract him with the offer of a sucky yoghurt for the car, I gave him a hug & gently tried to persuade him to toddle off with his father. Said arsehole of a father is standing in the doorway telling me not to pander to this manipulative behaviour (ds is 5), telling ds not to be so stupid, not to be a baby etc etc
Anyhow, the upshot was I virtually force poor ds into evil ex-H's car & watch the poor bean drive away in floods of tears.
Evil ex-H then phones up to tell me that I handled the situation wrongly, shouldn't mother the child & reward bad behaviour with treats etc etc etc. Is very unpleasant towards me and basicially tells me that all his family think I am a inadequate mother who doesn't know her own son.
Question is, do you think I am being unreasonable in suggesting that we go back to the original arrangement whereby if ex-H wants to see children during the week, he can come to the house & do bath & bedtime there? I suggested this to him & he says I am depriving children of their right to enjoy an evening with him during the week.
But are they enjoying an evening with him during the week? and is that then over-ridden by ds's upset in the morning?
No I think that you are quite reasonable to want to avert this in the mornings.
Can I just ask, can't he take the children directly to school, rather than bring them home first. DS might find that less stressful, than coming home then immediately being seperated from you again.
I would also try to find a quiet time to cuddle ds and find out why he gets upset about daddy taking him to school (perhaps he doesn't wait until they go in, or some other difference from what you do).
The children's feelings have to come first in this. I would be VERY upset to set my little boy off to school in tears.
I dont think your being unreasonable at all. It seems to me whatever you do/don't do it would still be the wrong thing in your exdh eyes. If he feels your children are being deprived and wants an evening with them , then could he have them on Friday evenings instead.Which would stop the school run problem.
i would find out from DS what the issue is with mornings -- if he is ok with dad and gf at weekends, there must be something to upset him... I would get to root of problem first - think your ex is being awful with his critical attitude... he is obviously not foing soemthing right if his DS is too upset to go to school with him...
Crikey I do not blame your ds from not wanting to go with im!
Follow your instincts, if my ds was that upset seeing his dad in that way, I'd change it so he asn't upset
He can call it pandering, you can call it love and caring.
Depriving them of him
This is happening to me. Ex manipulates, threatens and is basically a total b***d to the children but has a court order so they have to stay with him when it's 'his time', aaarrrrggghhh!
Nothing to add but my support. Totally agree that your dh sounds a bit off vis you 'depriving children of their right to enjoy an evening with him during the week' when HE TOLD YOU about the problems in the mornings. That doesn't sound very enjoyable for anyone - but kids come first, not his wish to have a nice evening with them. If he can't suggest a sensible solution to the problem, I think you're absolutely right to go back to original arrangement.
You're not at all unreasonable. Point out to him that it's HIS behaviour that is unreasonable. Your ds doesn't want to go to school with his dad so for his sake it stops. Your ex is being very selfish and is just using every excuse to snipe at you. F*ck him and what he's telling his family, you know what's best.
Thank you all. Good point raised by Octavia that nothing I do will ever be right by him. I have sent him an email suggesting that we should try & stick to a set routine so that the children can get used to the same thing every week. And that if he can't do that, then we go back to the previous arrangement where he does bath & bedtime at their own home.
I am steeling myself for the spiteful response he'll give me.
Despite a very clearly worded email, he deliberately choose to misinterpret it and said that I was denying him access to the children mid-week & then said he wouldn't discuss it any further as I was being pedantic.
Our interactions always leave me feeling outraged by his childishness & a sense of injustice & impotence. I keep thinking I should be able to deal with this better - but just don't know how.
Send him another clearly worded e-mail suggesting that he takes the kids directly to school after his evening with them. Point out that you're not trying to deny him access and that you're only thinking of the best for your children and that you're sure he wants the best for the children too.
Is he nasty enough to actually want to upset your child in this way or to have some weird reason for doing it?
How does your other child react?
Finally, is it worth sending a copy of your e-mail and/or a letter outlining the situation to the lawyer who dealt with your divorce case. Just to get something on the record. (I'm probably being paranoid here.)
Oh bugsy, sorry he's being his usual arseish self. Why can't he have them and take them to school directly from his house? I think he must if he wants a weekday arrangement to continue. Either that or you insist that it's too disruptive for them and he has to come to your house OR just see them every other weekend.
Agree with Easy - are the children 'enjoying' an evening with him?
Don't think they are that fussed about it tbh. All they do is drive to his house, have a bath & go to bed. Think they would be just as happy staying at home. He says he is "not comfortable" doing bath & bad time in my house! (I should add I make sure I go out so that it really is "his" time with them.)
Bugsy, why doesn't he take them directly to school, rather than home first?
Given how little sense it makes, I can only presume it is because he likes to check to see if I am at home or not. (ie did I stay out all night)
Bugsy he sounds like a complete t*sser and I agree with everyone else's comments. Also I think the way you handled your ds sounded lovely and kind and that's not 'pandering' to him - he was genuinely upset. Why do people (probably mainly men!) think you have to be harsh with little boys when they are upset - to make them into men or something??! I think that just ruins their self esteem and confidence and makes them less secure not tougher. I only have dds and their father never sees them and when I hear things like this I am very glad he made that decision!!
His family sound awful too. God why are people like that?
I think you should insist he either takes him straight to school or doesn't see him in the week except at your house. Stick to your guns and f*ck him!!
Definately, either he does bath and bed at your house, or he takes them straight to school in the morning.
If it was me, I'd hide near school once or twice too, to make sure kids weren't upset when they got there.
Oh, and I treat my ds like that too. When he's upset he needs comforting
Well Bugsy that's your answer. You suggest 'nicely' that you don't want to deprive him of seeing the kids in teh week but that obviously it is the coming home bit that is bothering your kids. Please could he take them directly to school. I mean sometimes you are not there because you have already left for work - so how can he tell if you ave been out all night ??
I can (in some way) see his point about bath and bed at your home, simply becasue it isn't HIS home and even if you are out it is uncomfortable for him.
Bugsy - I would like to add my support. I have 3 DSs and their father makes everything as difficult as he possible can, but like SoManyKids I am told by the courts when he has his time with the children. Children need consistency so decide what is best and just tell him - I think no trips to your house before school - or - make sure he has lunchboxes to prepare and money to send in, and reading/homework to do, and swimming lessons to fit in etc etc - he'll soon go off the idea!
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