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#1 of 33 Old 08-31-2010, 02:16 AM - Thread Starter
 
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What am I supposed to be doing as a single parent. My kids always look like crap but they get to school on time. (its a ghetto school so no one is wearing designer clothes and matching socks and brushed hair is optional). i make their lunches most days (not today) and cook meals from scratch (mostly vegetarian which seems much harder than cooking meat. we had chicken tonight. really unhealthy chicken). I try to keep the house clean and laundry washed (fail. I wore dirty clothes to work today). Forgot to pick oldest up from school....Really, Am I expected to work a hard labor job all day and still be a soccer mom who brings home made cookies to church on the Sundays I teach their sunday school class? My xh seems to think this is all totally possible and maybe it is but I feel like I am drowning. I feel like since there is just me, exhausted me, some things just have to give. This track thing is killing me. She has to do it every day after school and one morning a week. except I need her to get her sisters ready and out the door in the mornings. She wants to quit and I want to let her but I live in constant fear of my xh taking me back to court to get more custody if I don't let him have his way. he thinks this whole divorce thing shouldn't effect them or their life style and I am the mom and I need to suck it up and be their driver/personal shopper/ providing them with every opportunity etc. (convenient for him since he doesn't have to do any of this and if it doesn't effect them he doesn't have to feel guilty about leaving us for another woman), I think this is our family and we are one for all and all for one and they just don't have the advantages of a two parent double income family and that sucks but thats life. He also thinks I am a bad mom for not calling the school and setting up their whole track thing for her. I still have no idea when meets are, whats expected of me, how long the season is but I think hey, she is in 8th grade, she needs to bring me this information. If she wants to do it bad enough she will be responsible enough to that. he thinks I am just being lazy. Oh thats right, what started all this was I was so tired after work I fell asleep abd forgot to pick her up. but we live less than a mile from school, but dd, I say this with love is lazy and called her daddy crying for a ride. told him mom wouldn't pick up the phone. ugh. she knows she is not supposed to call her dad to bail her out when she fails to plan. he always bails her out, calls me a bad mom for not jumping to attend to her and then she learns nothing. (really if she missed a couple of lunches she would stop forgetting her lunch box.)

Anyway, am I the only one who thinks that three kids to one single mom make sports and other time sucking activities out of the question? we have one bathroom. so when I get home at five we have 3 to 4 hours to get dinner (and real food is important to me. I cook for my family) on the table, homework done, find some cleanish clothes, take four showers, do chores, say prayers and get to bed. Where exactly am I supposed to fit in daily soccer/track/whatever his great idea practices and games? Am I a bad parent for not getting it? how do other people do it? fast food and late bedtimes? not an option. Also I don't get two days off in a row. ever. period. and I don't have personal days. and don't really get much vacation. Can't switch. I switched with a friend. one day. my kids haven't been to church in a month. too high a price. one day and we have had four weeks of chaos. I am not giving up my one day to sit idle at a track meat. there is laundry and cooking and gardening and church and a weeks worth of errands and chores to do. Am I a bad mom for HATING sports so much. I don't mind pick up games and individual athletic pursuits. Just organized city and school sports that are outside school hours.

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#2 of 33 Old 08-31-2010, 02:35 AM
 
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Being a single mom sucks, and I only had one baby at the time I was a single mom. I can't imagine having to do it now that that baby is a 9th grader.

One thing I would like to suggest...is there ANY way you can see about a carpool set up with some of the other track moms? That's really about the only way that our family survives the daily after school practices for my dd's soccer. Practices that for some reason aren't immediately after school, so the kids come home, are home for an hour and a half and then have to be BACK at the school for practice, which lasts either an hour and a half or two hours, and then back home again...and we live a good 20 minute drive from the school. So, DH and I have set up a car pool with 3 other folks. It makes all of our lives about 1200 times easier. Even someone that you could just trade days with could help.

As to the track schedule (track is a fall sport for you guys?) have you checked the school website? Does the school have a website? (you said it was a ghetto school, I used to teach at a "ghetto" school, so I know often, they don't have a website) My daughter's soccer coach posts all the game schedule and info and such on the website, and it's available for printing. If not, while I agree that it's her responsibilty to get the info to you and that in 8th grade she should be capable of it, I think that a call to the coach/school to get some more info might just make your life easier rather than more difficult, because you could make some plans based off it.

How old are the other two kids? Is your 8th grader really going to bed at 9pm? Perhaps you might consider giving her a little bit more freedom to choose when she wants to go to bed. Or, perhaps consider just moving her bed time back a little. That's a pretty early bed time for a 12 or 13 year old. That might help you, because then she can help get the younger ones ready for bed without having to get herself ready till later. A couple other suggestions for your night time routine...if you are cooking dinner, are the kids doing their homework at that time? If not, that might help too, rather than scrambling to get it done after dinner.

Please know, none of that is posted in judgement, I am only trying to offer ideas to help. As I mentioned before, I was a single mom with a baby in the past and it sucked. I worked and went to school and had the little one, so I know all about the time crunch. Even now, while I am no longer single, DH is working full time, 40+ hours AND in school full time, so he's gone basically all day anyway. It really has been like adjusting to being a single mom all over again, only this time I have a teen and a 2 year old and am pg now. It really does suck to have to be the one to try to manage it ALL.
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#3 of 33 Old 08-31-2010, 10:37 AM
 
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If her dad wants her to do this so much and is close enough to pick her up after school, why doesn't he take her to the practices and meets? He can drop her at your house when she's finished with practice and you can take care of the other two. There's nothing that says they HAVE to be together with one parent or the other; let him pick up the track meets and practices.
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#4 of 33 Old 08-31-2010, 11:00 AM
 
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If her dad wants her to do this so much and is close enough to pick her up after school, why doesn't he take her to the practices and meets? He can drop her at your house when she's finished with practice and you can take care of the other two. There's nothing that says they HAVE to be together with one parent or the other; let him pick up the track meets and practices.
I agree. Let Dad help more if he is willing. Also, unless your neighborhood is very bad, an 8th grader should be able to walk a mile home from school.

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#5 of 33 Old 08-31-2010, 12:31 PM
 
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yeah, she is old enough to walk, ride her bike, arrange for a ride for practices and/or her dad can help out with activities.

is he a good parent? what are the reasons you do not want him to seek a greater percentage of time with the kids?

it sounds really tough. i feel like i have it easy right now while my boys are small and both at the same preschool/daycare, but even so, i have trouble keeping up. like, they really should have had a bath last night but they didn't, because we had to pile into the car and zip to the store for diapers because i didn't realize i was out (ds2 only wears it to bed, so i use 1/night). by the time we got home they were both whining and fussing so much we had to go straight to bed. it happens. (and i'm not a daily bath freak, but they had been in the sandbox yesterday so they kinda needed it . . . ) of course i could have had them hop in the shower with me this morning, but they were playing happily and i just wanted those five minutes alone, you know? bleh.

eta: you are not a bad mom for hating sports - i would hate a DAILY freaking activity outside of school hours, too. however if it's important to your dd, i do think she's old enough to figure out how to make it happen for herself. i don't think it should be forbidden. i think when they're younger it's okay to say no, we can't swing it, but she should be able to arrange a ride for herself imo.
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#6 of 33 Old 08-31-2010, 02:18 PM
 
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Oh please...you're doing fine. I'd say that she can suck it up and he can suck it.
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#7 of 33 Old 08-31-2010, 02:25 PM
 
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Honestly, I'm not a single mom, and I still can't manage what it would take to have my kids on a sports team. You're doing fine. If he wants her on the track team, he can take her. But since she wants to quit anyway, I say let her.
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#8 of 33 Old 08-31-2010, 02:37 PM
 
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That's ridiculous. There are only so many hours in a day, and as a single mother you don't have many to spare. Don't feel one bit guilty about not wanting to do this!

My baby is 2 years old! How did that happen?!
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#9 of 33 Old 08-31-2010, 05:27 PM
 
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i would say, if he wants to be involved and play shuttle service, let him. otherwise, since you are only one person, continue to do what you can and let go of the rest. all of us are doing our best. there's not reason to get bogged down with unnecessary guilt.

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#10 of 33 Old 08-31-2010, 05:39 PM - Thread Starter
 
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i think part of it is that I went from being a stay at home homeschooling mother (with my kids 24/7) to getting to see them a couple hours a day and every other weekend. I am not keen on giving that up. School sports seem ok because it doesn't effect my time with the two little ones. But the whole soccer thing is insanity. it is your whole life for 9 months out of the year. and no one in the family sees anyone else in the family. Also church is really a priority for us. especially since the kids only get to go every other Sunday. So there is no way they are doing something like a game or a meet on any day we have church. If I trump the game for church my xh will have a hissy fit though. And coordinating anything with him feels like more trouble than it is worth most days. It is easier to just not do anything. And there is always the threat of him taking me back to court and leaving me with even less time with my kids.

oh and track is in spring, cross country is in the fall. Its all just running to me. for a girl who hates to run. But she wants to be in sports. even though she hates to move. I never wanted to be in sports so I don't get it.

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#11 of 33 Old 08-31-2010, 08:01 PM
 
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I heard you mention your ex's opinion of your parenting several times in your original post. Him complaining about you not meeting his standards of mothering must really burn. If he met someone else and left you to parent on your own, how does he have any kind of say in how you manage your home and parent the kids? I mean, who cares what he thinks? I think you should laugh in his face if he criticizes you. What- he's going to take you to court and get custody of the kids because you let your dd quit track? Because you prioritize nutritious meals and adequate sleep over a high commitment sport? Because you want to teach your dd to take responsibility for her own actions by not rescuing her every time she forgets her lunch? What kind of judge is going to listen to him?

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#12 of 33 Old 08-31-2010, 08:13 PM
 
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Some of us lose our minds, quite literally.

Best of luck to you figuring it out. I hope their dad steps up to the plate since he has so many expectations. Wish I could offer you advice, but the only thing I can think of is to tell X to put a sock in it and tell dd that if she wants to be an athlete, fine, but can she figure out a sport that's more conducive to your family life? Or find a friend that will give her a ride?
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What kind of judge is going to listen to him?
You'd be surprised at the absolutely crazy things a judge can think, say, and order to happen.

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#13 of 33 Old 08-31-2010, 08:14 PM
 
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So...your dd wants to quit track, and you want to let her, but you're making her stay, because you're concerned your ex will take you back to court??

Your ex is delusional. To think that the divorce won't/shouldn't affect the kids, while he's not doing any of the work, is cracked.

I really have nothing useful to say and most of what I'm thinking is in violation of the UA. Let your dd quit track. And, don't beat yourself up. I was only a single mom for a year, and while it was much easier than trying to function with the deadweight of my ex around my neck, it was still brutal...and I only had one child. Cut yourself some slack!

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#14 of 33 Old 08-31-2010, 08:55 PM
 
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I REALLY feel your pain. I went from a stay at home mom with little ones--and loved life--to suddenly alone, kids in school and now I have to work in a job I hate.
I just want to die sometimes.

I have no wonderful words of wisdom--but I have similar priorities to you (and I am in a similar boat):
my dd is a violinist--so it's music, not soccer...
but try these on for size:

When you are sitting at the soccer meet or whatever, take a little notebook and record what you CAN get done in a day on one side and what you MUST get done on the other. Number the lists (1,2,3, etc) and compare--take the things off the bottom of the list and leave them for the weekends you are alone without the kids.

Also--re: meals---cook and freeze in large quantities when you have those free weekends. I have a friend (wish he were single now that I am single) who has a garden and he spends lots of time making spagetti sauce out of his tomatoes and canning his other things. Then just add fresh pasta.
You can do that. The kids won't look back in ten years and remember how many times they had the same meal.

Lay your clothes out ahead of time--and same with the kids. I do this every night. It save me trouble.

Get into a routine and cut back on things that you don't need.

Get a carpool for soccer--or simply ask some of the moms to help--you need it, ask for it. Let them know the situation and that you'd be happy to give them some homemade spagetti sauce or something--child care on your free weekends.

Finally, get that 8th grader to get off her duff and help out. If she leaves her lunch--too bad--she needs to suck up and you and your x need to be on the same page about that.

hang in there--I'm in the same boat and I just want to curl up into a ball and die.
And right now I hate life--and if it weren't for the kids, I think I'd probably off myself. No kidding. I feel no sense or purpose in living--a job I hate, no one who loves me--no pity party--just the truth. Of course, BECAUSE I DO HAVE MY KIDS I will keep myself together for their sake, but honestly, at this point in my life--mid life, a crap job even with my advanced degree, and no love in my life--and distant friends--I just can't believe I am here and wish I weren't many many times throughout the course of a day.
Sorry, didn't mean to hijack or whatever--just wanted you to know that I get it and I wish I didn't. I wouldn't wish this he11 on my worst enemy.
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#15 of 33 Old 08-31-2010, 09:37 PM - Thread Starter
 
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GranoLLLy-girl, after my little pity fest up there this might not seem helpful but it does get better. Really it does. (((hugs)))

Part of my inability to get crap done is that I never ever have two days off in a row. I get Tuesdays and Friday when he has the kids and Sunday when I have the kids.

Thanks for all the support guys. Even if he can't win in court he can still take me and that is time and money I am already short on. One more thing to do ya know. Since he is self employed he has all the time in the world and a totally flexible schedule. He really thinks his lifestyle is available to everyone. That all you have to do is search the want ads for a job that suits your needs.

As for convincing him not to bail her out every time she calls him whining....His mom was still doing his laundry until the day we got married. They are total bailer outers and still buy things for their older kids...houses, cars, college, back to college etc...these "kids" are in their 40s. Is there any guess why they can't figure it out how to support themselves (they do not have children)?

Anyway, I am feeling better about life today. Even as a a stay at home homeschooling mom I still couldn't figure out where people found time to live the soccer mom life style. Guess I just don't get it. or the appeal of it. which makes it hard for me to find a way to make it work. I am at peace being a family who doesn't do all that.

And I need to stop listening to my ex. good grief. not having to listen to his crap....thats why I divorced him in the first place. (well that and his girlfriend...)

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#16 of 33 Old 08-31-2010, 11:05 PM
 
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What am I supposed to be doing as a single parent. My kids always look like crap but they get to school on time. (its a ghetto school so no one is wearing designer clothes and matching socks and brushed hair is optional). i make their lunches most days (not today) and cook meals from scratch (mostly vegetarian which seems much harder than cooking meat. we had chicken tonight. really unhealthy chicken). I try to keep the house clean and laundry washed (fail. I wore dirty clothes to work today). Forgot to pick oldest up from school....Really, Am I expected to work a hard labor job all day and still be a soccer mom who brings home made cookies to church on the Sundays I teach their sunday school class? My xh seems to think this is all totally possible and maybe it is but I feel like I am drowning. I feel like since there is just me, exhausted me, some things just have to give. This track thing is killing me. She has to do it every day after school and one morning a week. except I need her to get her sisters ready and out the door in the mornings. She wants to quit and I want to let her but I live in constant fear of my xh taking me back to court to get more custody if I don't let him have his way. he thinks this whole divorce thing shouldn't effect them or their life style and I am the mom and I need to suck it up and be their driver/personal shopper/ providing them with every opportunity etc. (convenient for him since he doesn't have to do any of this and if it doesn't effect them he doesn't have to feel guilty about leaving us for another woman), I think this is our family and we are one for all and all for one and they just don't have the advantages of a two parent double income family and that sucks but thats life. He also thinks I am a bad mom for not calling the school and setting up their whole track thing for her. I still have no idea when meets are, whats expected of me, how long the season is but I think hey, she is in 8th grade, she needs to bring me this information. If she wants to do it bad enough she will be responsible enough to that. he thinks I am just being lazy. Oh thats right, what started all this was I was so tired after work I fell asleep abd forgot to pick her up. but we live less than a mile from school, but dd, I say this with love is lazy and called her daddy crying for a ride. told him mom wouldn't pick up the phone. ugh. she knows she is not supposed to call her dad to bail her out when she fails to plan. he always bails her out, calls me a bad mom for not jumping to attend to her and then she learns nothing. (really if she missed a couple of lunches she would stop forgetting her lunch box.)

Anyway, am I the only one who thinks that three kids to one single mom make sports and other time sucking activities out of the question? we have one bathroom. so when I get home at five we have 3 to 4 hours to get dinner (and real food is important to me. I cook for my family) on the table, homework done, find some cleanish clothes, take four showers, do chores, say prayers and get to bed. Where exactly am I supposed to fit in daily soccer/track/whatever his great idea practices and games? Am I a bad parent for not getting it? how do other people do it? fast food and late bedtimes? not an option. Also I don't get two days off in a row. ever. period. and I don't have personal days. and don't really get much vacation. Can't switch. I switched with a friend. one day. my kids haven't been to church in a month. too high a price. one day and we have had four weeks of chaos. I am not giving up my one day to sit idle at a track meat. there is laundry and cooking and gardening and church and a weeks worth of errands and chores to do. Am I a bad mom for HATING sports so much. I don't mind pick up games and individual athletic pursuits. Just organized city and school sports that are outside school hours.
I think you are an amazing mama! You cook from scratch, get their schoowork and baths done and get them to church. Sports is not necessary to life. If she wanted it, she would be motivated. If it is important to him then he gets to rearrange his life to make it happen, period. I don't know why you don't simply tell him that if he wants sports to happen then he does all the driving to and from events and purchasing of the supplies/equip. Just tell him sports is not part of your family goals for the kids and that he lost the right to tell you what kind of mother you are when he left. Don't engage. Let your daughter quit. Their is nothing wrong with kids learning to help. My son and dd do their own laundry(have since age 10) and have gotten the younger three breakfast every day except Sunday since age 8. (Simple fruit breads and fruit, or oatmeal or cereal and fruit type options). They help me with the bath/showering, by drying off little ones and helping them get dressed. My dd helps with her sister's hair as she can. It is part of being a family. He is not part of your family, so he does not get to direct the children's time on your time. Make you one day off a family day. Do things you can do together as a family. And that can be sports (take a soccer or basketball to the park, or run together and then do a 1K fun run every now and again) or whatever you value (I would choose arts events myself). Focus on what you are doing right not what he thinks. Clearly he is a man of poor character. I long ago decided that people I don't have respect for do not get to dictate my own self respect!
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#17 of 33 Old 09-01-2010, 12:20 AM
 
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I long ago decided that people I don't have respect for do not get to dictate my own self respect!
Love this! SO many single mamas could use this as their motto!

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#18 of 33 Old 09-01-2010, 02:05 AM
 
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I just got to say, if he is so concerned about their lives not changing, why doesn't he give you enough money so you can actually stay home with them? It sounds crazy that he left you and expects everything to be the same but how can it possibly be when you need to now go out to work?!

I also agree that if it's so important for him that your DD does track and he has such a flexible schedule, then he should be taking her to practices. Also, I'd tell your daughter if she wants to do track she can run to and from school everyday as part of her training.

I'm really angry for you right now! Though, part of that might be PMS!

It's complicated.
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#19 of 33 Old 09-01-2010, 07:30 PM - Thread Starter
 
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He thinks I should be able to work 40 hours on my feet and still be everywhere all the time. He is an extrovert so staying home is not an option for him. He was NEVER home (literally. He would come home around 3AM and be gone by 9AM unless I had to work. I worked 10PM to 6AM though so he never saw the girls) and doesn't understand how wiped out this introvert is after a day working in retail. He also doesn't value bedtime and lets the girls stay up late. So his days really do have an extra 2 to 4 hours in them. the two days every other week he sees them and a couple of hours on Thursday. He can also clear those four days a month and make sure he has nothing going on. I am always a day behind. I don't have two weeks child free to get everything in order so I can focus on the kids. Hey yeah! I don't and he does. who couldn't do that?

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#20 of 33 Old 09-08-2010, 11:36 PM
 
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OP, he sounds like he's perpetuating the things from your marriage that continue to be triggers for you.....But the reality is, single parenting life is very different!

If we're into confessions here, then here goes--
Dd never has her hair brushed. It's washed a couple times a week and combed out then, but she's not digging the hairbrush at present. Do the teachers judge her at school? Maybe. Do I care? Not really. What was for dinner tonight? Cookies, lunch meat, avocados, leftover soup, lettuce and rice cakes. Well-balanced, home-made graze food. It took about 5 minutes to get in the graze bowls. My idea of ideal? Nope. Everyone happy and nutritioned? Yep. Clean house? Nope. Do I care? Nope. It's 9:30 and dd is still in her fairy princess fort and happy. Good bedtime? Nope. Everyone happy? Yep. Will tomorrow a.m. suck? nope. Why? Banana in the car, no hairbrush. Kid up and gone in 10 minutes. Ideal? no. Passable? yep. Happy? yep. As soon as I was able to make my own standards (I CAN do it, I CHOOSE not to sometimes) and could use my middle finger to my own hard-wired perfectionism, I found happy. You can too. When others judge me (and I know they do) I think, hmmmm, do I want to have a hard life? That's what they offer with their perfect ways. No way, Jose. We get er done and have fun. Way better.

If your dd wants to be in sports, it's cool to let her off the hook now and again for the morning events. She's a great help to you getting the others ready the rest of the days, but she probably needs to feel like a kid sometimes too. You might owe her a morning off, no? If she's talking about quitting, it might be to save the family the hassle of the loss of her care--that's pretty heavy for a teen. (coming from someone who gave up a lot to be the second-mom at home ---and resented her own mom for it)

SMC to dd 4/07.
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#21 of 33 Old 09-08-2010, 11:49 PM
 
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OP, he sounds like he's perpetuating the things from your marriage that continue to be triggers for you.....But the reality is, single parenting life is very different!

If we're into confessions here, then here goes--
Dd never has her hair brushed. It's washed a couple times a week and combed out then, but she's not digging the hairbrush at present. Do the teachers judge her at school? Maybe. Do I care? Not really. What was for dinner tonight? Cookies, lunch meat, avocados, leftover soup, lettuce and rice cakes. Well-balanced, home-made graze food. It took about 5 minutes to get in the graze bowls. My idea of ideal? Nope. Everyone happy and nutritioned? Yep. Clean house? Nope. Do I care? Nope. It's 9:30 and dd is still in her fairy princess fort and happy. Good bedtime? Nope. Everyone happy? Yep. Will tomorrow a.m. suck? nope. Why? Banana in the car, no hairbrush. Kid up and gone in 10 minutes. Ideal? no. Passable? yep. Happy? yep. As soon as I was able to make my own standards (I CAN do it, I CHOOSE not to sometimes) and could use my middle finger to my own hard-wired perfectionism, I found happy. You can too. When others judge me (and I know they do) I think, hmmmm, do I want to have a hard life? That's what they offer with their perfect ways. No way, Jose. We get er done and have fun. Way better.

If your dd wants to be in sports, it's cool to let her off the hook now and again for the morning events. She's a great help to you getting the others ready the rest of the days, but she probably needs to feel like a kid sometimes too. You might owe her a morning off, no? If she's talking about quitting, it might be to save the family the hassle of the loss of her care--that's pretty heavy for a teen. (coming from someone who gave up a lot to be the second-mom at home ---and resented her own mom for it)


This is exactly how things are run here too. DS doesn't wants to wear PJs to daycare? ok. will i be judged? probably. Why don't I care? because I don't want a morning fight, especially on days that his dad picks him up for the night. His last thoughts of me shouldn't be screaming panicky mom...it should be happy loving mommy.

Once I found my middle finger (figuratively of course), things started clicking into place.
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#22 of 33 Old 09-13-2010, 10:43 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Oh good heavens. He sent me an email about this thread. seriously. I can't even come to MDC to whine anymore. Muh. if he doesn't want to read the things I write he should find a better hobby. he called me a liar. I swear this is all true.

I am going to let her drop out of cross country by the way. It has been three weeks. She more than upheld her end of the bargain. She gave it a try and she still hates it. Her coach won't let her run in meets because of allergy triggered asthma (we don't treat it because it hasn't been a problem since we got rid of carpet. ) And her friend, the reason she was interested in cross country, dropped out because it is making her hate running. so now she doesn't even have her buddy to run with. screw this. I want her to like being active. tomorrow is my day off. I am going to call around about a family class for Tae kwon do. she loved that and we could all use some exercise. and since it is family classes we will all be together. good stuff.

The truest answer to violence is love. The truest answer to death is life. The only prevention for violence is for the heart to have no violence within it.  We cannot prevent evil through any system devised by mankind. But we can grapple with evil and defeat it, but only with love—real love.

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#23 of 33 Old 09-13-2010, 11:31 PM
 
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Very creepy, about the ex spying. He's got a lot to learn if he thinks you're not entitled to have a support group and to vent any way you see fit! You don't need to run your words by him for approval first, if that's what he thinks. Lame. More controlling behavior and yeah, too much time on his hands.

And yes, your daughter tried the sport, didn't enjoy it and it's eating up a lot of your precious little bit of free time. I loved drama when I was in school, and once signed my son up for a drama class, but his experience there wasn't good, he wasn't enjoying it, so I pulled him out because I knew he'd associate that with a bad experience if he stayed any longer. And just because I love it doesn't mean he has to, anyway.

And yeah, the sports thing - if one isn't totally into it, it's a pain and I don't understand the vast number of practices parents are willing to clog up their lives with. When exactly do they spend time as a family? When do the kids have, you know... free time? There is one sport my child has grown passionate about but it's one short season a year, not year-round, and it's not every day or anything. And he's in it because he likes it, not because he's forced to. My ex has tried to make him sign up for other stuff like that just to keep him "busy" but the fact is, he doesn't get to decide that all by himself as it affects MY time with my child (and I'm the one supposed to bring him), so: No thanks, I'll decide how we're spending OUR time. And your ex lost the chance to dictate your schedule when he left.

So there you have it. And your ex doesn't get to dictate what you do with your free time with the kids.
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#24 of 33 Old 09-13-2010, 11:55 PM - Thread Starter
 
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(since my xh is reading this I should point out that I threw him out. after he told me he had been having sex with another woman for years. But I threw him out. That seems important to him.)

I just told my dd. She is very happy but is scared her dad is going to be angry with her. I told her not to worry about it. I told her I would take the anger. I am used to it.

The truest answer to violence is love. The truest answer to death is life. The only prevention for violence is for the heart to have no violence within it.  We cannot prevent evil through any system devised by mankind. But we can grapple with evil and defeat it, but only with love—real love.

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#25 of 33 Old 09-14-2010, 11:38 AM
 
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Oh good heavens. He sent me an email about this thread. seriously. I can't even come to MDC to whine anymore. Muh. if he doesn't want to read the things I write he should find a better hobby. he called me a liar. I swear this is all true.

I am going to let her drop out of cross country by the way. It has been three weeks. She more than upheld her end of the bargain. She gave it a try and she still hates it. Her coach won't let her run in meets because of allergy triggered asthma (we don't treat it because it hasn't been a problem since we got rid of carpet. ) And her friend, the reason she was interested in cross country, dropped out because it is making her hate running. so now she doesn't even have her buddy to run with. screw this. I want her to like being active. tomorrow is my day off. I am going to call around about a family class for Tae kwon do. she loved that and we could all use some exercise. and since it is family classes we will all be together. good stuff.
Well since he is reading here, I hope he sees this. I hope he gets a life. His own life. He left his family. When you leave --you LOSE rights. You lose the right to express your opinion about your former partner's decisions, what happens in the home, what she does to make her schedule and 24/7 solo parenting situation work. The kids know he left. Trying to force his will on an older child who probably has her own resentments of the situation he has now placed the family in, will only backfire on him in the future.
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#26 of 33 Old 09-14-2010, 11:51 AM
 
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(since my xh is reading this I should point out that I threw him out. after he told me he had been having sex with another woman for years. But I threw him out. That seems important to him.)

I just told my dd. She is very happy but is scared her dad is going to be angry with her. I told her not to worry about it. I told her I would take the anger. I am used to it.
I am just laughing in disbelief. What a dream world he is living in. Did he really think there would be no consequences for what he was doing? And he still thinks he is the aggrieved party here??????? Yikes. His idea of what is important in life is misplaced in all sorts of ways, isn't it?! I know grooves that are worn for years are hard to undo, but I don't know why you give any thought or consideration to his feelings on anything at this point. Don't trouble yourself another minute. Just build a wonderful happy home for yourself and your kids.
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#27 of 33 Old 09-14-2010, 11:57 AM
 
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Yup - leaving and then still trying to control the family you left behind is called "having your cake and eating it too". It doesn't work that way.

My ex too was very concerned on whose "fault" it was that marriage technically ended. Sure, he was abusive and drank and God knows what else, but I am the one who make him leave and I am the one who filed for divorce, so in spite of his awful behavior, he takes great comfort in thinking that it's my fault. I think this is a common coping mechanism for people who feel guilty about making huge mistakes in their lives. And control freaks resent it when you take the control away from them.
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#28 of 33 Old 09-14-2010, 12:40 PM
 
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Yup - leaving and then still trying to control the family you left behind is called "having your cake and eating it too". It doesn't work that way.

My ex too was very concerned on whose "fault" it was that marriage technically ended. Sure, he was abusive and drank and God knows what else, but I am the one who make him leave and I am the one who filed for divorce, so in spite of his awful behavior, he takes great comfort in thinking that it's my fault. I think this is a common coping mechanism for people who feel guilty about making huge mistakes in their lives. And control freaks resent it when you take the control away from them.
Exactly this. I am the one at fault as per my ex's mindset because I left him. But it's not like I made such a big decision on a whim. He had gone back to using drugs on occasions, drank at least a 6 pack a night, criticized everything I did, helped not one bit with the home and kids, would get drunkenly upset if we interrupted his "relaxation time" after work (read: played video games for 2.5 hours while drinking)....nevermind I was working, going to school, taking care of the kids, trying to clean and cook when I could and never got "relaxation time" after a 7:30-4:30 job behind a desk with an hour lunch break. Oh, and I found out after I left him that he had cheated on me during our marriage. BUT it's somehow all my fault because I left with the kids. Yeah, I don't think so.

He moved a gf in after a year of separation after dating for about 4 months. She's nice and all, but I was really upset, since he was the one that went on and on about not introducing our kids to new partners.


lilyka, you do as your family needs. Don't worry about an overly snoopy ex.
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#29 of 33 Old 09-14-2010, 12:44 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I think for a lot of men, if they are having an affair or whatever, they try to make their wives miserable so they will leave before he has to be the bad guy. Also, if she throws him out not only does he look like the poor little victim, he never has to admit to his issues. If my husband had gotten me to leave before he admitted the affair he never would have. He almost made it too. But I am stubborn.

And earlier in the thread someone mentioned my oldest dds bedtime. She goes "to bed" at 8:30 but she has her own floor of the house and I don't know what she does up there. its her world. She just has to be up there and quiet enough so that no one complains (she is over the neighbors house) She reads a lot, finishes up homework, etc. So long as she gets up without whining in the morning I don't care how long she stays up within reason. Also she does not have to do much with her sisters in the morning. They are dressed and eating before I leave. She does their hair but only because she is so good at it and loves the way her little sisters think she is some sort of style goddess They have comb and go hair and are capable of doing it themselves. All she has to do is make sure they get out the door in time. Which is pretty easy because My neighbor sends her son out and her son comes and picks up the girls and they all walk together. So its not like she is shoulder a huge amount of responsibility. She is just *here* and thats whats important.

The truest answer to violence is love. The truest answer to death is life. The only prevention for violence is for the heart to have no violence within it.  We cannot prevent evil through any system devised by mankind. But we can grapple with evil and defeat it, but only with love—real love.

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#30 of 33 Old 09-15-2010, 11:10 PM
 
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That's ridiculous. There are only so many hours in a day, and as a single mother you don't have many to spare. Don't feel one bit guilty about not wanting to do this!
absolutely. i'm a single sahm to 3 and I don't like scheduling activities for evening hours. I feel like you do in that there's not enough hours after school to really get anything done other than a healthy homecooked meal and baths and homework and bed. Yeah I stay at home, and I'm so blessed to do that and it affords me lots more time to get my "chores" done during hte daytime hours but our only family hours are the 4 hours between the big girls coming home from school and bed for the 2 year old. And that includes the big stuff: dinner, baths, homework. How do you fit in activities that take up an hour in the evenings plus drive time? And let's be honest, I have 3 kids. To be fair that would be 3 activities 3 days per week, minimum. Not gonna happen. And they see their dad 3 days per week. that would leave us one day per week without a place to be and that's too much scheduling for us. I don't see the need to get all these activities in place.

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