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Question- looking back, would you have avoided divorce if you could? - Page 2

post #21 of 72
I am so sorry he is putting you through this. I can’t even imagine how hard this is for you.

I can certainly understand your own feelings of ambivalence about having another child and the temptation go along with his ultimatum to keep the peace. However, if you’re contemplating going through with an abortion you’re not comfortable with in order to “save your marriage” then I think you need to intensively and realistically evaluate what kind of marriage you have now and would have afterward.

Would your feelings of love and trust in him remain after he has coerced you into an abortion? What kind of man would abdicate responsibility for his part in this situation and then would feel comfortable coercing you in order to get his way? Is that the kind of man you want your life tied to? Could you really go back to “the way things were” before the pregnancy without this whole situation and everything he’s put you through tainting everything?

If he’s willing to coerce you in this most reprehensible way, could you really trust him to not use the threat of divorce later on in other circumstances? If his reasoning for not wanting another child is that it would make his life too hard, would you really be able trust in his support and love in the future if something terrible was to happen like you or the kids were injured or sick? Would you be constantly on edge that anytime life got hard that he would find a reason to abandon you and the kids?

Is your marriage worth trying to save if you can’t trust him to stand by you through both the good and the bad times? I think his ultimatum is more than unfair, it’s a betrayal of one of the core foundations of marriage in my opinion and I personally would not be able to get past that.

Whatever you do, it’s going to be hard road and I wish you the best with whatever direction you end up taking.
post #22 of 72
Quote:
Originally Posted by bananabug View Post
Thanks everyone. It's helpful to have a reality check. I have to admit though that I have days where I don't want this baby at all. I was done with the newborn/infant phase, and it seems overwhelming to go back again, especially on my own. That being said, I've gone in to do a termination, and I just sit there and can't do it. It's not even about my H when I consider termination, it's about my two kids and what I'm taking away from them. And I know it's H who has put me in this position, but ultimately I will feel guilt about making a decision to continue a pregnancy that leads to our family changing so drastically. No matter how many times someone says "it's your H's fault, not yours", I will feel responsible because I did make a choice too. And will I even be a good mother to three? Is it fair to my two kids that I'm adding a baby to an already difficult situation?

Sorry, just having a really difficult day today. Pregnancy hormones don't help




Of course you'll be a good mother to three. And keep reminding yourself that you're not choosing divorce--your dh is.
post #23 of 72
Quote:
Originally Posted by Goodmom2008 View Post
Your pregnancy isn't what is leading to the change in your family. Your stbx's inability to act like a responsible grown up is what is leading to this change.
Wise words. People change; people lose jobs, change careers, become disabled, become overwhelmed with care for their own aging parents, and sometimes become pregnant. Some changes are intentional; many aren't. Some changes are welcomed; many - like perhaps this pregnancy - aren't. For a spouse to throw a hissy fit and insist that his world and the people in it not change seems naive at best. For a spouse to instead say, as you have, "I'm ambivalent about this change but I have to accept its reality" is mature. I'm sorry he couldn't be your equal partner in this change to your lives.
post #24 of 72
Sometimes I think about not going through with the divorce and try to win him back, but I come back to my senses. He had an affair and would probably
do it again and I have been called so many names and pushed a few times.

Things could never be good again.

I remember when I got pregnant with my last child accidently,There are 6 years between 3 & 4. He said I got pregnant on purpose to stay home for 5 more years and do nothing but sit on my butt..
post #25 of 72
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ginger_rodgers View Post
bananabug, what support do you have there?
My sister lives nearby and is my best friend. She calls me at least daily to check on me and helps with my kids. My parents alos check in daily, although they live several hours away. My mom is coming tomorrow though (staying at my sister's- she can't deal with my H right now). I also have good friends who are neighbors, they've offered everything from taking the kids to shoveling my driveway if I need help with that. I have a wonderful neighborhood (although only those 2 people know so far). I do have lots of good friends and supportive family members, but no one can take this horrible decision off my hands for me, unfortunately.
post #26 of 72
Termination or not aside... I doubt you'd ever be able to forgive such a man.
post #27 of 72
Oh, and huge
post #28 of 72
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by hazelmama View Post
I am so sorry he is putting you through this. I can’t even imagine how hard this is for you.

I can certainly understand your own feelings of ambivalence about having another child and the temptation go along with his ultimatum to keep the peace.
Whatever you do, it’s going to be hard road and I wish you the best with whatever direction you end up taking.
Thank you. At this point, I'm not even thinking about making peace with him as a reason to terminate. I don't think our marriage would be the same. But I just worry that I'm not doing what's best for my two kids. We may be headed for divorce one way or the other- does it make sense to go forward with a pregnancy when it will be a struggle already to care for my two kids on my own in this economy, not to mention help them transition through some hard times? I'm trying to take my emotions about the pregnancy out of it, and be realistic about what I can manage as a mother (and I do want to continue to be a good mother whether I am married or single). I'd love to have another baby that would be brought up in the context of a loving marriage and stable family....but being realistic given my current situation, will I be able to provide what this baby needs if I am doing this on my own?
post #29 of 72
Quote:
Originally Posted by bananabug View Post
Thank you. At this point, I'm not even thinking about making peace with him as a reason to terminate. I don't think our marriage would be the same. But I just worry that I'm not doing what's best for my two kids.


They'll have another sibling. That's a huge gift. (I'm not trying to influence your decision, but I just wanted to give you another perspective to think about.)
post #30 of 72
When faced with this kind of decision in the past, what really did it for me in terms of making such a decision, is asking myself; Is there any chance whatsoever I would regret NOT having this child? Because you can never really regret HAVING a child, but you CAN regret NOT having one. And just to give you some perspective, my answer to this question was "Yes" for DD #3, and was "No" for my last pregnancy. Which ended up ending in a miscarriage.
post #31 of 72

Banana Bug

This is really heavy stuff. I think there's some excellent advice already here. My only response at this point would be to encourage you not to take on the blame for the breakup. It seems like he is the one choosing to walk away from his family & I feel suspicious. I don't know why; it just smells fishy that he would give up his family just b/c he didn't want to have another child. It seems like there's a lot more to it. Just my opinion.


Cynthia
http://blackswanpapers.blogspot.com/
post #32 of 72
Well, sure. The easiest way you and I could have avoided divorce would have been to not marry such selfish and immature men.

But, since we did, divorce is sort of the only option we had left.

Don't beat yourself up. This was not your fault.

Sometimes we fall in love with someone who isn't good for us. I don't believe we should punish ourselves for the rest of our lives over it.
post #33 of 72
I could not save my marriage at the price of my morals.

I am one in what seems to be a very small minority of the ECUSA who still sees divorce as a terrible thing. Even the priest I went to for counseling seemed rather blasé about it. I would have done nearly anything, when I was going through it, to have stopped it.

Know what, though? I'm a better person on this end of it. I'm communicating with my ex. He's basically a good man, but he cheated on me & ran out on me & took my kids. I was pregnant at the time. I miscarried that baby. I am not yet ready to completely close the book on reconciliation, but I am taking a hard look at it, and he'd have to treat me one hell of a lot better than he did the last time we were a couple for me to consider anything lasting again.

I miscarried my baby. I did not terminate. But I still get mad at him sometimes for his part in the loss of my child. I am frankly not sure I could move past it, even were everything else perfect between the two of us.

Having a newborn as a single mom would have made my life exponentially harder. But looking at other babies who are the same age my fourth child should be right now is worse. Sometimes I look for her still. I cannot escape the fact that I should be a mama of four.
post #34 of 72
Honestly, looking back, I would've avoided marriage if I could. I would've just had a baby on my own. No men, no fuss.

I have little use for the nuclear family arrangement...and find it to be a stifling, oppressive one.

Edited to add a for Sagesgirl. I'm so sorry, mami.

Edited to add again after reading of the OP's situation :

Oh mami. How completely horrible. I've been in a somewhat similar situation...recently. I got pregnant last year and miscarried, with my Whatever He Is Right Now. He didn't want the child and was adamant about me having an abortion. I waffled back and forth, but in the end decided to terminate. I couldn't bring a life into the world that wasn't fully wanted in such a situation. I miscarried the day I made the decision to terminate. It was ugly.

I wish you peace and clarity. You'll know the right answer. It will come to you.

I will say that if I were you, I would run far, far away from that man.
post #35 of 72
To answer your thread title.... yes. I would have avoided it if I could. And I still would (it's not final yet).

But... there is the question of "could".

When I was before the judge I just started sobbing. I told my lawyer after that it wasn't what I wanted... it was what had to be.

And it's true.

This divorce is not what I want but it is what has to be given the current circumstances. I've tried to change my "starbucx" (I love that nickname from another set of threads). I tried for years. I tried doing what people here say to do... to set boundaries. And finally I realized that I could not change him, I could only change how I react to him.

For your situation specifically, I would find that to be a deal breaker. My children are my children whether they are born yet or not. And no one threatens my children's lives like that and gets away with it. Especially the person that I and my children are supposed to trust most... my husband/their father.

I can tell you that I have been in the situation that you describe. I decided that this child was going to be a blessing regardless of his/her father. It's been stressful but this child truly has been a blessing. And my life with this child has been better than my life before when I lived with starbux and had one less child. You won't know now how you'll deal with life after this child comes but you'll find that you'll take things one step at a time and that you're surviving and then thriving.
post #36 of 72
Quote:
Originally Posted by ginger_rodgers View Post
I think something is lacking in our education. In my early 20s, I was also one of these women who got involved with family-abandoners. Twice. I really figured that the previous marriage had nothing to do with me, and that it was part of some chopped-off past -- and that in turn had to do with the fact that I'd had nothing to do with the world of babies and young children, or family-raising, in a decade or more. Mothers and young children were as invisible and devalued to me as they are to most of the rest of the world.

I think we need to do more to keep our girls in contact with young children and their families, so that they're talking to the mothers, and seeing what's involved in having a young family, especially as a single mother or a child who's been left. On its face, that sounds like a throwback sentiment, and not one that would be likely to come from a second-wave feminist. But without that connection and understanding, I think it's unlikely that young women will really see anything awry in these men's behavior. Which means that it comes as a big surprise when Mr. Wonderful turns out not to be so wonderful, even if he does stick around because he doesn't want to rack up another failure.
I think this is so true. I don't know if I believe that simply seeing the reality of the mothers and children would be enough though. I know smart women in their 30's who actually grew up with single moms and dead beat dads and STILL got involved with family abandoners.

I feel like there is an underlying (even overt) blame put on women when men leave them (or force the women to leave). The women who come into the losers life subsequently feel like they will be his savior. All too easily viewing the other women as he describes her (crazy/bitchy/insane/frigid, etc...)

Men get away with a lot that women don't and aren't held equally accountable for the dissolution of families, for the failure of birth control, etc.
post #37 of 72
Ghannit -

YEAH THAT. I'd love to see men held accountable for half the crap responsibility dumped on women's heads for every conceivable thing.

When pigs fly, but it would sure be nice to see. Thanks for that comment, truly. Glad someone else is aware of this, too.
post #38 of 72
Well (and this is wandering OT), I don't think it need be when pigs fly, but many more of us will have to be willing to be total bitches, and quite directly. Or at least be willing to get called bitches and be viewed that way.

For instance: My daughter's school doesn't provide either after-school care or transportation to after-school care, which means someone has to come pick up the kids at 3, or 2, or 2:30, or whenever the school decides to let out that day. I went and talked to the principal and assistant principal about this early in the year, and it was clear that their attitude was "well, parents do whatever they have to to accommodate us, and most of the parents here are rich anyway, and they're not complaining." In practice, of course, it's mothers who do it, because our non-child work is unimportant, because we're unimportant.

I told them at the time that I'd been doing freelance work in order to stay flexible enough to deal with their scheduling issues, but that it looked like the work might be drying up, and that I'd have to get a real job. In which case it would be impossible for me to do this midday pickup thing, and also that -- since there's not some hubby bringing home big bucks -- I wouldn't be able to afford to jeopardize my job or reputation by dashing out whenever a hired driver flaked.

The school folks did their very best to shove me towards putting together some rickety, anxiety-ridden "mom support system" that they'd never tolerate for their own work, so I pointed out to them what they were doing. They were shocked, but as there was no immediate problem, we let it all go. They've been unhelpful in trying to put together alternate transportation systems for other parents in the same situation.

Now the work has indeed dried up, and eventually I will have to take whatever work I can get. When that happens, I fully intend to let the school figure out what to do with my daughter until someone can come to pick her up. Every time. They can work with me on arranging regular, reliable, alternate transportation; or they can call the police, and explain to the community -- which is pretty lefty, and already angry at how few social problems this rich neighborhood has to deal with -- why it is they're tripping up single parents trying to make a living. Other schools seem to have figured out this after-school thing, so I imagine they can too. But one thing I won't do is let them shove it off on to me.

I'm also going to crash the "learn how to deal with students of color" parent/teacher/administrator seminar-party the district is holding later this month, and do two things:

1. Force them to be very careful about their categories. We've had "students of color", "low income students", and "students from single-parent household" for many years. Most of them have been university and professional families. What we haven't had are the very poor, uneducated, urban black families who've recently migrated here and whose children are often the subject of police calls in the schools (this is the impetus for the seminar).

I already get rather insulting mailings weekly from the district which assume that I don't bother with my kid's education, can't feed her, and have neglected her through the divorce. I don't want more of this as the district's politiclly correct social-work policies expand, and I don't want my daughter or myself slotted into categories that are more likely to harm us than help.

2. Make it plain that the district has been unwilling to deal with the problems it creates for families which are not in crisis, but are low-income, single-parent, etc. It's great that they want to do counseling and be understanding. Wonderful. Now how about fixing the childcare problems they've created so I can go on making a living and supporting my kid.

I expect that someone from the district will helpfully suggest I drop my career for a few years and get a job as a substitute teacher, so my hours match theirs. At which point I'll underscore, publicly, that they'd never, ever suggest that to a male resident at the hospital. Why? Because men's careers are important.

And they can call me what they please.
post #39 of 72
Ginger -

Amen. AFREAKINGmen!!! I wish you and your daughter all the luck in the world. I hope they pull their heads out of their backsides.
post #40 of 72
I am not in your shoes, but one thing I *do* know is this: if you carry this baby to term and bring him/ her into this world, no matter what your immidiate circumstances (single/ married, money/ no money), you will never regret this baby's life, that fact that this baby will exist and he/ she will be with you. And that will last beyond your immidiate circimstances. Sending P&PT for you and your kiddos.
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