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What do you do if XP completely undermines your (plural, you thought) parenting decision?

30 replies

notevenamousie · 28/06/2009 21:05

Today I took my beautiful 2.6yr old dd to XP, who she loves seeing a lot. He had been quite aggressive previously about where he was taking her, and taking her where I wouldn't know, but seemed to have relented so she has gone to his as planned.

I planned, he agreed, that she's ready for toilet training. Since last Saturday she's been gradually dry daytime and naptime for ~5 days and some nighttimes and I am so proud of her. We've had trips out and we took the 3+ hour journey to take her to him today.

And he stripped her down and put her in a nappy.

I am so angry, that he is messing her about, he says it is "not convenient" for him. What about her!!?? Am I overreacting??

OP posts:
thumbwitch · 29/06/2009 00:29

well now, you could be - it depends on where she went with him.

If she was out and about with him, it would be harder for him to take her to the loo than it would be for you, so the nappy might be a sensible option and YABabitU.

If, OTOH, they just stayed in all day or only went for short outings, then no, YANBU and he is just being lazy.

Still, bloody annoying if it upsets her new habits - but wouldn't you be just as pissed off if he had taken her out and she had wet herself?

Monty100 · 29/06/2009 00:39


Its his responsibility too. for you!

mamas12 · 29/06/2009 09:08

wetting herself would just be a normal thing to happen during the process. Just carry wet wipes and a new change of clothes.
He sounds like he just couldn't be asked to me.
Don't really know how you would go about joint responsibility about this as he is not being a co parent at the moment.
All I can think is ask him if this was just a one off if so hyou will have wrtie it off or aske if he is going to commit to the potty training or leave it all to hyou which might mean no acces until it's done.
Bit harsh I know maybe you won't actually take that step but ask him about that scenario.

confused99 · 29/06/2009 10:06

Mamas12 are you really suggesting access should be stopped?

mrsjammi · 29/06/2009 10:10

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Janos · 29/06/2009 11:00

Good advice from mrsjammi I think mousie.

It doesn't sound like your ex is prepared to reasonable and discuss things with you so this is something you may have to let go, frustrating though it is.

I gave up trying this with my XP cause he doesn't give a flying F for my opinions/ideas and does whatthe hell he likes anyway!

From reading about your ex I'd say it's pretty likely he will enjoy the opportunity to do things that he knows will upset/annoy you.

If, however, if he is actually causing harm to your DD then that is another matter entirely.

mamas12 · 29/06/2009 11:08

confused No that is not what I am suggesting. I am just asking op to say this to her ex as a solution to wake him up because he is interrupting the potty training and it will take longer and be more confusing for dd.
Just to get him to look at it differently.
mrs is right you cannot control what ex does with dcs or he with you and that is how it is, but this is slightly different as the op and her ex had agreed something then he went back on it.
Bloody frustrating for the op as she thought she was on the same page so to speak then he changed it all.
As i said if it was a one off ok but op need to talk and agree again about the training.

Janos · 29/06/2009 11:12

mamas12 you are dead right it is frustrating, but my XP is just like this.

I have 'learned' over time not to let it get to me.

I would also point out that there is absolutely no point trying to talk or make agreements with someone who is manifestly unreasonable, because concepts such as reasonableness and compromise are absolutely alien to them.

Sounds awful I know but these people do exist.

seeker · 29/06/2009 11:14

I'm sorry - but it is a seriously bad idea even to SUGGEST that access be denied/changed over an issue like this. PLEASE don't give advice like that - it's really dangerous!

notevenamousie · 29/06/2009 11:41

It's ok seeker, I'm not going to say he can't see her.
I am just really sad for her. Janos you're right, as you so often are (you seem to go through the same sort of stuff as me with a child a bit older than mine, it is really reassuring, though a shame, to read that someone else has been there already).

He actually stripped her in the back of his gf's car in the waiting area outside Manchester airport. So I do think it is potentially damaging to her (her confidence and self-esteem, etc) not just irritating to me. I want us to co-parent, albeit seperately. Maybe I should just give in about it, but I do think it's worth keeping trying.

OP posts:
mamas12 · 29/06/2009 12:16

I repeat I did not suggest to withdraw access
i said to ask him if it would work better if she stayed with the op until it was done to shock him into thinking about it abit more.
Sorry to see that he is really not considering you dd at all just himself.
So sorry that it is going to be a long hard slog with him but keep posting for support.

Janos · 29/06/2009 13:04

mousie, I feel for you here, I really do.

Now obviously I don't know your XP but as I've said before he does sound very similar to mine.

My experience is, really, you can try until you are blue in the face to get then to come round to your way of thinking but they just won't. To me and you, and I'd like to think most people, co-parenting is absolutely the ideal and the preferred way of doing things.

As I've realised all this reasonableness, lets chat, talk about things, lets try and reach a compromise, lets put DC first just DOESN'T WORK with some X's and mine sadly is one.

Mousie, only you know what your ex is like of course and I'm not saying he is like this, it just sounds like he could be.

What I've had to learn is to let things like this 'go'. Yes it's infuriating and frustrating but if it's not doing your DD any actual harm then..well choose your battles!

That is not to say you don't keep an eye on him and what he is doing. Just be aware of what he is like and protect yourself and your DD.

mrsjammi · 29/06/2009 13:15

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Ivykaty44 · 29/06/2009 13:27

I agree with MrsJ - leave your ex to do what he will as long as it doesn't put your dd's life in danger.

Get used to this now as homework, school projects, disepline will all be a hassle for your ex and he will not do it.

Don't worry about it though cos if he does - well its a bonus and if he doesn't he has lived down to your expectation.

Thats what it is all about really - you have an expectation of him as a fahter - please dont.

Remeber though this works both ways his party line - so if you dont agree he will not get anywhere with you.

It really really is not a good way to parent - but there is no point trying to parent together if one parent refuses.

Niceguy2 · 29/06/2009 13:35

I think this is small beer in the grand scale of things. If i were you i'd bite my lip and save your breath for the big issues which will come up one day.

notevenamousie · 29/06/2009 15:51

Thank you for all the supporting and interesting posts.

Obviously my daughter being distraught and humiliated is a big deal to me, niceguy, I am sorry you think that it is merely "small beer".

OP posts:
lostdad · 29/06/2009 16:04

Sounds like you've already drawn your conclusions about this notevenamousie.

Have you discussed it with your ex? If not, why not?

notevenamousie · 29/06/2009 16:11

I haven't because she is with him and what if he takes his feelings out on her? I thought about it for a long time last night though. I just want to do the best.

OP posts:
Janos · 29/06/2009 16:33

mousie - of course you want to do your best. I totally understand your frustration and anger and have been there. You are not wrong for wanting to do your best by your DD!

lostdad - it's been said before and I think you have even said it yourself. You simply cannot reason with someone who is unreasonable. Mousie has already said she tried discussing this with her XP - but if he's not listening or doesn't care, what's the point?

Sad to say there are parents like this, both make and female and they are universally frustrating, difficult and upsetting to deal with when you are not of a similar mindset.

btw mousie if you want to chat on MSN please feel free to CAT me.

Janos · 29/06/2009 16:34

That should be both male and female, sorry.

mrsjammi · 29/06/2009 16:57

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GypsyMoth · 29/06/2009 17:06

Doesn't teach her much though does it? She needs consistency or she'll be playing them off against each other for her whole childhood, and that's not in her best interests is it?

mrsjammi · 29/06/2009 17:10

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Janos · 29/06/2009 17:12

Yes sadly you are right mrsjammi ! I have indeed learnt the hard way. I remember many times being in tears (anger, frustration and plain old upset) after trying to resolve various parenting issues with my XP. I'm sure you know what that's like.

Honestly, it is the psychological equivalent of banging your head against a brick wall.

Sorry, I've taken over your thread a bit with this mousie. Hope you're ok and thinking of you here.

Niceguy2 · 29/06/2009 18:03

OK, so correct me if I'm wrong. The issues are:

  1. That you are trying to toilet train your DD and your ex has put her in a nappy because its not convenient for him.

  2. He changed her in the back of a car.

    Neither of which are hardly grounds for claiming he's some sort of neglectful father. The worst thing he can be accused of is daring to disagree with the way you would parent.

    Its just a different parenting style. I am sure if your ex were here, he could find lots of things you do which he doesn't agree with.

    And yes, sorry if I sound harsh here but in the greater scheme of things it is small beer. Speaking from experience here your daughter's 2.5. Your ex will be in your life for a LONG time to come so unless you fancy spending the next 16 or so years fighting, you'll need to learn to pick which battles are worth fighting and which to just bite your lip and scream "Muppet!" under your breath.
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