This is a Premium feature
To use this feature subscribe to Mumsnet Premium - get first access to new features see fewer ads, and support Mumsnet.Start using Mumsnet Premium
Aviuding making the same mistake(11 Posts)
So I find myself in a reverse situation where my DS father has recenty moved in to his home his GF and her DC x 3. My DS (14) has seemed ok about this, the GF has been around many years prior to moving in and other than samll little comments he seems to behappy enough. Or so I thought, however he seems to be finding reasons to be back at mine on what is usually his Dads contact time (50:50) and yesterday escalated into a bit of a scene and in the end I persuaded him to go as it's fathers day but he only agreed on the basis he came back to mine.
Now I am very concious how to deal with this as I do not want to be like my now DP's ex and say nothing to ex at all and let the problem get worse (which is sadly what we have experienced with the DSC) so I want to encourage and support the contact but clearly I don't know what is the real issue and DS is not saying but there is something. DS just says he finds my house quieter and more organised but Im not sure i think thats the real reason. His Dad thinks it is because my house in nearer his friends.
How should I approach this, could it be we need to re-consider changing the contact arrangements now he is getting older?
Are the DC are lot younger the comment about it being alot quiet could stem about him not wanting to be around young little kids at that age, does he have his own space at his dads?
Like what @Snappedandfarted2019 says - my dd & ds2 go to their dads regularly but moan a lot more going since their half siblings appeared on the scene 3 & 4 years ago. Dd in particular gets a bit frustrated with the noise level & lack of peace & quiet.
Friends actually is a legitimate reason at 14 same for computer at his or unlimited WiFi.
I strongly suspect our dss might wnat to see us more as dp doesn't restrict his Internet unlike his mom - I don't agree but get shouted down on it. They also share a hobby.
Are you all friendly enough to sit down together and talk about it? He clearly still wnats to see his dad which is good
The DC at his Dad's are actually older, it seems there are not really any boundaries that I can tell. So free for all with going in rooms and taking stuff without asking. Food ransacked before he has had a chance.
He does have his own room but has had to move room's which I think was a big mistake by my ex to be honest. Altough my lovely DS has been very accomodating about that.
I have a horrible feeling that my ex has moved in his GF and sat back on the sofa to enjoy someone else doing everything (you can see why he is my ex lol ) but has omitted to discuss with her is she is ok about inlcuding our DS in that. So I wonder if he feels a bit out on the edge - however I don't want to pass blame to the GF as this is my ex's responsibilty to make sure DS feels inlcuded and not overwhelmed isnt it?
It’s probably a combination of the things you are putting forward and suggestions above. Don’t over analyse and let him come home if wants. My DS is the same age and has fabulous arrangements at his dads and most of the time prefers to come home to his own bedroom. Lots of adults prefer their own bed and home comforts.
I think your house being quieter, his friends and feeling at home in your house are reasons enough tbh.
I think making him move out of his old room was wrong, especially if it came without consulting him.
From DSs POV... Dad moves in GF and her kids and I'm turfed out of what has been my room for X number of years.
From dads/GF POV... he's only here 50% of the time and her kids need the bigger room.
He also now doesn't get dad on his own...GF and her kids are there.
He sees his dad 50% of the time and now, the one to one time is gone. He very likely feels pushed out of a house where he was the only child.
Go with how he feels and don't push him to go.
The best thing is to encourage your DS to talk to his dad about what's wrong. Would you be about to begin sweet this up? Does he ever see his dad without the others? If not could they arrange to go out for dinner once a fortnight or something, maybe on place of some of the existing contract? I've had similar issues with my kids randomly coming back to mine when they're supposed to be at their dad's as they've got into their teens. I think it's natural enough in many ways, they're getting old enough to have more autonomy over where they spend their time, and they no longer need looking after in quite the same way as when they were younger. But it does sound as if your DS is feeling less at home in his dad's now that the GF has moved in.
@firefliess - yep he has text to ask to come back tonight after school for a few hours, only went back yesterday...
SandyY2K - you have summed it up very well there I think. He is an oly child and it was the two of them or a long time so most the adjustment is on my DS witht he new living arranagment. I dont blame the GF as its understandable but she has move din and even down to the meals now cooked is all driven by her and her DC tastes and so its been a huge change for my DS in so many aspects.
I agree he needs tot alk to his Dad but that maybe we will end up with a change of routine, perhaps the same for weekends but just do a night each week with his Dad which is one on one time.
We are currently experiencing the reverse situation with dss (I had a thread recently). You sound lovely and really supportive of a good relationship between your ds and his Dad.
We are trying our best to understand things from dss's pov, but it is still hurtful when this happens. In an ideal World, from the pov of the other side of your sceanrio, I would encourage your ds to speak to his Dad and try and be honest about why he no longer wants to stay over as much, and whether there is anything that his df can change to make him more comfortable and happy. I would also encourage ds and his df to discuss changes to current arrangements and get ds's input on what basis he'd like to spend time with his df.
We have accepted that contact with dss may have to be in shorter bursts now - for example him and dh go to the cinema or dss comes for tea, but then goes back to his dm's. As he gets older and goes out more, perhaps it will be dh picking him up from a night out or giving him a lift somewhere.
The dynamics naturally change I think, but if his df has been a good father, I do feel it is important to ensure your ds is aware and sensitive to his df's feelings.
@Stepmoose I agree and I am firm with him about being open to his Dad but also kind.
I have spoken to his Dad to and reassured him it's not about him, it's just a friends, convienience, surroundings issue.
I am lucky that he takes things onboard as is already looking to implement/change some things to make DS feel more at home/inlcuded. I in turn support both Ex and DS with all of this.
I never understand why exes think alienating or just being gleefull about them wanting more time at one home than the other is one upmanship.....I lost my Mum when I was 10 and my parents were divorced, I ended up coming to live with my Dad and his GF whom I barely new and only had a negative view that had been instilled via my Mum.
It meant we never really got off to a good start despite her efforts (we are very close now by the way even though she is not married to my DF anymore)
I hope I am around a very long time however it's always in my mind that I want my DS to have a good, no great relationship with his other parent.