The Catch 22... What would you have done? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 20 Old 01-26-2011, 04:24 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Ugh... so I've been trying to stand my ground with ex because over the last few weeks he has kicked it into high gear to depserately regain control over me and has taken to upping his verbal abuse towards me again. 

 

So last week he tells me he is ready to take the kids both Fri. & Sat. nights EOW now.  Pick-ups and Drop-offs have still been kind of wishy washy and I'm trying to make a clear arrangment so it's not in question.  Since he has not done a Friday night since before DS was born, I texted him to discuss the plans.

 

He texts me back that he actually cannot take the kids both days that he can only take them Sat. - Sun., but only if I do both drop-off and pick-up because he has no money for gas, and no money to feed them longer than that.

 

Seriously??  He just got a large bonus in Decemeber, and was showing off his new $500 camera at Christamas.  Not to mention that he now picks up his eldest DD every day after school and gives her dinner. 

 

So I'm PISSED!  I asked where the bonus money went, specifically the money he told me that he set aside just for the kids.  He says he spent it on bills and this is what happens when you have more going out than coming in...  (I wanted to reach through the phone and strangle him, because he still hasn't given his CS check from last week, and! He KNOWS he is only paying me half of what I should be getting right now because he gives me the sob story everyday how he knows he will be in the arrears when we go to court next week... um... then maybe you shouldn't have went so splurge happy on yourself with your bonus money?  UAV UAV UAV!!!!)

 

So my first reaction was to stand ground and I said, as per the agreement, you will do ONE of the transportation needs, either drop off or pick up.  He told me how messed up I am to not be helping him because he has come down here to help me a few times, and now that he needs it, I'm giving him the middle finger.

 

(Um, he came down Black Friday so I could go shopping for the kids, he came down last week so my Mom could sleep instead of staying up all day watching OUR kids, and he took DD ONE extra day while I was in the hospital... wow... sign him up for Father of the Year award!  He SO has not gone above and beyond in helping in anyway.)

 

So I got defensive and told him, that fine, he could not have the kids this weekend if he refused to pick them up.

 

I was SOOOO upset.  This also meant me cancelling plans that I have had for a month.  I was fuming about how he always gets to pick and choose when to be a parent, and it's so infuriating.  But DD LOVES him.  :(  And she asks about him all the time, and she lights up when he comes to pick her up...  So I have all these tangled thoughts in my head. 

 

I ended up texting him back that I will do drop-off and pick-up, but it will have to be from Fri. - Sun. and if he needs me to provide dinner for Friday, I will do so.  All of a sudden he has something on hand and I don't have to worry about it, but yes, he will take the kids those days as long as I do all transportation.

 

He may have felt he won... I don't know... but I know I felt like he had more control over me by flaking on his kids and making me cancel plans, and then I'm at home all weekend dealing with a heart broken 2 year old. 

 

I just wish I could beat him.  It's like he has gotten worse...  And it HURTS!!  He has never ever once cancelled on his eldest DD... but yet he flakes on my two kids ALL the time!  I don't undertand!!  This is the same man that would yell at me about favoritism and make sure I had the exact number of pictures out of each girl.

 

I just don't know what to do... I know a big part of me giving in had to do with I didn't want to cancel my plans either... and perhaps that makes me as selfish as him?  I don't know... but his last weekend that I was planning on FINALLY getting some rest, DS ended up getting sick, and we were in the hospital the whole weekend, definitely not restful.

 

I just really need a break.  And maybe it's totally un-mother like to feel that way... because my parents are telling me everyday that it is.  But I'm on ALL the time, with minimal help from anyone.  On top of that I'm dealing with both of my parents emotional abuse and ex's!!!  That's three freakin people kicking me down constantly!!!! 

 

So yeah... I needed this weekend away to get some breathing room for a time...

 

What would you have done?  Any ideas for future?  I just feel in a very "damned if you do, and damned if you don't" kind of place.


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#2 of 20 Old 01-26-2011, 04:43 AM
 
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I am thinking its going to be super important to get something IN WRITING and COURT APPROVED in order to keep the peice with your stbx.  Otherwise, he will constantly be changing the rules, and constantly be using you as a doormat.  If its all on paper, and he tries to sway, you can just hold up the order and say NOPE, sorry charlie, but this is how it is.  Figure it out! 

 

As for the rest of the UAVness, perhaps DoubleDutch will chime in soon.  She always seems to have great ideas at dealing with the ridiculousness that is the Emotionally Abusive Ex Husband. 

 

Also, have you read "Why does he DO that"?  I cant remember, but if you havent, im willing to bet it will be a real eye opener.  If you have, perhaps you should pick it up again.  Always good to refresh when it comes to dealing with men like your ex. 

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#3 of 20 Old 01-26-2011, 05:08 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Yes I have read it and own it and reference it a bit actually... but I don't see how that applies in this situation... I'm just not sure what I'm supposed to do... The parenting agreement didn't mention about if one parent can't "afford" to take the kids a certain time.  It addresses that if one has to cancel last minute and the other parent has plans, that the party canceling is responsible for childcare... but if he already doesn't have money and that is why he is cancelling... obviously he can't cover childcare.

 

Really... I think agreements boil down to BS.  If you have a co-parent that isn't going to abide by it... no one enforces it anyway, so you're left to figure out what to do from that point, anyhow.

 

I'm just trying to be able to live my life too... which is why I caved and decided to do the transportation.  At least he's taking his kids and will do something with them.  *shrugs*

 


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#4 of 20 Old 01-26-2011, 05:15 AM
 
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I meant reference the book on how to deal with the BS excuses he inevitably will throw at you on a regular basis to keep you under his finger.  It all boils down to control.  He has lost a form of control over you, so he is going to find other ways to control you.  And lets face it, hes not above using his own children as leverage. 

 

Have you ever straight up called him on his BS?  "OH really?  You have NO MONEY for gas, but you pick up DSD every.single.day.  Whats the difference?  Shes closer to you?  Or you just dont have a problem following the rules with your FIRST ex wife, since you know you can bulldoze me with excuses of having no money?".  Stuff like that.  Call his bluff, and see where it gets you.  Cuz at this point, what do you have to loose, right?

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#5 of 20 Old 01-26-2011, 05:32 AM - Thread Starter
 
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LOL!  Yeah I did try that out last night, and a few other times Gina.  Last night, He just said for me to stop bothering him and to have a nice day.  :p  So it shut him up... but it still did not ultimately budge him to do what he should be doing.

 

And yes... that is the sticking point with me that has me SOOO infuriated... the fact that he uses his children to get at me.  :(  It's sickening!!  I know this all came about as punishment to me because he found out that I had a cake for DD last weekend and I got tired of waiting for him to put together DD's bike for her birthday, and had my Dad do it.  He kept throwing huge fis about how he wanted to put the bike together with DD and I better not take that away from him... yet every single weekend it'd be one excuse after another about why he couldn't do it... Well, I waited long enough.  DD's birthday was at the begining of the month, and it was ridiculous to wait on him... So that was another line I drew. 

 

I've been trying so hard to be amicable and flexible with him for the children's sake, and while we were waiting on finalization with the court... But I'm just SO DONE with trying to break bread with my abuser.  Very tired of it. 


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#6 of 20 Old 01-26-2011, 05:54 AM
 
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When you go to court to finalize everything, make sure the court order spells out transportation responsibilities.

And, if you will be sharing those responsibilities, have it specify (in appropriate legally worded super-clear unambiguous language) that the receiving parent is responsible for picking up. 

It also needs to specify specific times. i.e. pick up is at X time such and such day.

It should also have a clause that if he is more than X amount of time late (an hour or two if you want to be really reasonable), he forfeits the weekend.

 

He'll still be a UAV. He'll still try to jerk you around. But it's easier to disengage when that's the deal:

UAV: I can't pick up the kids because my new Mercedes hasn't arrived yet.

You: Sorry to hear that. Thanks for letting me know. If you find a solution, let me know. Bye.

UAV: bla bla bla [controlling drama]

You: Sorry to hear that/ sorry you feel that way [=pass the bean dip]. I've gotta go now. Let me know if you find a solution. Bye. [hang up]

 

You need to realize that he might not follow the agreement. But the agreement needs to be written so that when he doesn't he's the one that misses out. And written in such a way that *your* responsibilities are clear. So that you can fulfill them no matter what he does.

 

Sorry he's such a UAV.

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#7 of 20 Old 01-26-2011, 06:46 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ione View Post

 

When you go to court to finalize everything, make sure the court order spells out transportation responsibilities.

And, if you will be sharing those responsibilities, have it specify (in appropriate legally worded super-clear unambiguous language) that the receiving parent is responsible for picking up. 

It also needs to specify specific times. i.e. pick up is at X time such and such day.

It should also have a clause that if he is more than X amount of time late (an hour or two if you want to be really reasonable), he forfeits the weekend.

 

He'll still be a UAV. He'll still try to jerk you around. But it's easier to disengage when that's the deal:

UAV: I can't pick up the kids because my new Mercedes hasn't arrived yet.

You: Sorry to hear that. Thanks for letting me know. If you find a solution, let me know. Bye.

UAV: bla bla bla [controlling drama]

You: Sorry to hear that/ sorry you feel that way [=pass the bean dip]. I've gotta go now. Let me know if you find a solution. Bye. [hang up]

 

You need to realize that he might not follow the agreement. But the agreement needs to be written so that when he doesn't he's the one that misses out. And written in such a way that *your* responsibilities are clear. So that you can fulfill them no matter what he does.

 

Sorry he's such a UAV.


*nods*

 

Yeah all of that is in there... exactly worded that who's parenting time is begining does pick up, and times.  But times have been sort of scrapped because ex can't fit three car seats across in his car, so he can't pick up DD and DS if he already has his eldest.  So that has been a factor as well.  And well, I'd be a major UAV if I didn't let him see his kids because he doesn't have adequate car space to pick them up...   So we've been trying to work with that...

 

I've even tried having those sorts of conversations with him too... And have hung up the second he gets verbally abusive.  I have definitely taken a lot of control away from him.

 

I guess it's just me wishing I didn't have to deal with his wishy washy UAV crap... period.  Eh, wishful thinking... gotta love it.

 

I think it doesn't help that everytime he is blantly a UAV and I get upset, my parents right away are, "well you loved him so much and had to have children with him... you're problem now."  It's just so counterproductive...   


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#8 of 20 Old 01-26-2011, 08:01 AM
 
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I don't have a lot of experience with this as my ex lives several states away and goes more than a year without seeing our son but...

 

...I can offer a suggestion for dealing with your two-year-old. Don't remind her that she's going to Dad's house until you know he's on his way. Then if plans change at the last minute, at least it's only you who will be impacted.

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#9 of 20 Old 01-26-2011, 08:36 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I don't remind her... I never ever tell her that her Dad is coming or anything like that because I don't trust him nor count on him.  DD has a VERY good internal clock or something though... because without fail by Wednesday she is asking and talking about "dada".


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#10 of 20 Old 01-26-2011, 08:51 AM
 
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To lessen the blow if he doesn't show up, can you have her call him?  DS calls his dad on the phone (I think your dd is 4 or 5 day's older than my ds :), and he LOVES talking to him on the phone.  I dial, and then put it on speaker and give ds the phone - then when ex picks up, its ds on the phone!  It's adorable.  It helps him miss daddy less, and then he's better for a few days.  When he starts talking about him again, or asking to call daddy, we call.  I help him leave messages too if ex doesn't pick up. 

 

ETA - if your ex won't talk to her on the phone I think you should just start saying things like, "OH I don't know where daddy is!  Maybe he's doing......." and just make something up.  My ds always tries to ask to call daddy at bedtime, and I tell him that daddy already went to bed and we can call him in the morning, or the next night after dinner or whatever works at the time.  Sometimes he asks what daddy's doing, and I'll say, "daddy's eating dinner" or "daddy's working" or something like that.  It helps him not miss him so much b/c he knows whats going on (kinda sorta) and

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it's not selfish or unmotherly to need a break.  i'm glad you're getting one!  it's okay that you said you wouldn't provide transportation both ways, and then changed your mind - at first you were being reactive, and then after you had a moment to think about what it was that you really want/need (a break and your fun plans vs 'winning' by not providing transportation both ways), you offered to do it after all.  that's really okay, imo.  then again, i provide ALL transportation.  i will admit i was like 'f*** yes!' when i read that you told him he could pick up his kids or give up his time with them, but that decision wasn't serving you so you made a compromise that works best for you (and dd!).

Quote:
Originally Posted by ~Charlie's~Angel~ View Post
As for the rest of the UAVness, perhaps DoubleDutch will chime in soon.  She always seems to have great ideas at dealing with the ridiculousness that is the Emotionally Abusive Ex Husband. 


ROTFLMAO.gif  that's because i'm doing it too!  and not doing it well, mind you - i'm just learning from my own mistakes here.


 

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He'll still be a UAV. He'll still try to jerk you around. But it's easier to disengage when that's the deal:

UAV: I can't pick up the kids because my new Mercedes hasn't arrived yet.

You: Sorry to hear that. Thanks for letting me know. If you find a solution, let me know. Bye.

UAV: bla bla bla [controlling drama]

You: Sorry to hear that/ sorry you feel that way [=pass the bean dip]. I've gotta go now. Let me know if you find a solution. Bye. [hang up]


LOVE!  i will be filing this away in my brain.

 

you know, i went through something similar recently.  it went like this.

 

stbx was taking the kids from 11am to 7pm.  i had a b'day party to go to at 4:30.  the kids had been sick but seemed to be feeling pretty great when i dropped them off.

3:15 i get a text that says 'ds is really sick, i don't have any tylenol or money to buy it, suggestions?'  (i didn't see his text immediately)

3:45 i miss a call and get a voicemail saying, 'he has a fever, i don't think he's going to make it until 7pm, maybe you can pick him up early?'

3:48 i call him back, and he says, 'he's lying on the floor, sleeping and shivering. i'd walk to the store and get tylenol, but i only have a couple of dollars, i need you to pick him up.'  i said okay.  this is all going down at his mother's house, which is how he would be able to leave them while he runs to the store.

3:49 i tell my aunt and uncle i'm going to pick up the kids and why.  they are like, 'come on! is he 12 years old? he's their dad!  your kid is asleep, not freaking out! he's just bored because it's not fun to parent sick kids, but you know what, he's their dad. do not go pick them up - you have plans!'  we discuss for like 20 minutes.

4:15 i text stbx saying, 'borrow the money from your mom and i will pay her when i get there. i have plans, i will be there by 7.' 

 

woohoo!  okay, seriously, i didn't even consider saying no to him until other people called bs!  it was so stupid. and when i got there, my kids were fine.  they had a great time, and it's not like they needed me - they were with their dad and grandma.  yet i'm so conditioned to just go along with whatever.  he's always asking me to drop them off later or pick them up earlier (and that is 11-7 one day a week, that's all he chooses to spend with them).  so anyway the point of that whole long story is, it's really hard to change these patterns and i think you are doing a great job. 

 

have a super crazy fun weekend!

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#12 of 20 Old 01-26-2011, 04:20 PM
 
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 ex can't fit three car seats across in his car, so he can't pick up DD and DS if he already has his eldest.  So that has been a factor as well.  And well, I'd be a major UAV if I didn't let him see his kids because he doesn't have adequate car space to pick them up...   


Hey, if he has three children, he needs to find a way to cope with transporting HIS three children.

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Phoenix~Mama View Post
 ex can't fit three car seats across in his car, so he can't pick up DD and DS if he already has his eldest.  So that has been a factor as well.  And well, I'd be a major UAV if I didn't let him see his kids because he doesn't have adequate car space to pick them up...   


Hey, if he has three children, he needs to find a way to cope with transporting HIS three children.



What she said.  Oh man I wouldn't be accommodating him.  This is my grumpy face.


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#14 of 20 Old 01-26-2011, 06:39 PM
 
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Don't give in.  If the court order says he is to do one of the transportation, then he is to do that.  If the court order specifies a time that he is to pick them up, tell him the kids will be ready for him to pick up at that time.  If he is more than 20 minutes late, you will text him with where you will be as you are not changing your plans due to his tardiness so he will just have to go where the kids are to pick up.  And let him know that you expect the kids to be ready for you to pick them up at the time in the court order or the agreed upon time. 

 

If you cave now, he will just keep doing this.  And don't have it set up to where you take them there at the beginning and he brings them home.  Because I suspect he will then say that if you want them, you have to come and get them.  Thus forcing you to provide transportation both ways. 

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#15 of 20 Old 01-27-2011, 07:38 AM
 
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Just a reminder that both your kids are very young. I know you are in for the long haul with your ex but things with your kids will get easier and it will get to the point where you don't need him as much to get a break and it will be easier to resist caving into his demands to be able to get time off. Good Luck


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#16 of 20 Old 01-27-2011, 10:43 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I like your thought process doubledutch.  lol  

 

I've been standing my ground on sick visits too.  DD is sick all the time now (whole different topic)... so if I kept her everytime she was coughing and on medicine (above and beyond her daily asthma inhaler anyway), she'd never get to go.  So, I've started taking the stance, of he is still their father, as incompetent and lazy as he is... but still he usualy does at least go at get her fever reducer when needed.  He did call the doc last time she was there and got one of her allergic reaction rashes... granted the severity of that one the doc I took her to the next day said that likely should have been an ER visit... but well, he tried?  End result, she was still okay, and there still hasn't been anything to make a court cease visitation, so I have to accept that he may not be as on top of various things as me, but the kids will still be okay...

 

But, yeah... as for doing transportation this weekend... in the end, I thought back over the whole it's okay to do something for myself once in awhile... doing the transportation give me the MUCH needed break I need for this weekend... so I still "win".  If I do have to end up doing transportation so he will actually take the kids... I guess I'm prepared to do that.  It's just a lot going on right now, and I know it won't be this way forever.  But in this moment, I need a break.  Mama sanity is pretty important.  And I've definitely noticed I'm a far better Mother when I get a chance to regroup and revitalize a little.

 


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#17 of 20 Old 01-27-2011, 11:18 AM
 
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But in this moment, I need a break.  Mama sanity is pretty important.  And I've definitely noticed I'm a far better Mother when I get a chance to regroup and revitalize a little.

 



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#18 of 20 Old 01-27-2011, 05:56 PM
 
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End result, she was still okay, and there still hasn't been anything to make a court cease visitation, so I have to accept that he may not be as on top of various things as me, but the kids will still be okay...


 


Mama - you have come a LONG way!!!!  YAY for you!!!  It is SO much easier when you just let it roll off your back.  Hopefully he will take her to the ER next time (and CALL you to tell you), but good for you for just letting it go!!!!  I am SO PROUD of you!!!!!!!

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#19 of 20 Old 01-28-2011, 07:17 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Aww!  Thanks SSMama!!!  :hug


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#20 of 20 Old 01-31-2011, 11:21 AM
 
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Isn't your arrangement that you and your ex each do either pick up or drop off? In that case, I'd drop the kids off at his house and have him bring them back. Then you're guaranteed the time you need for your plans, and the kids get the max time with their dad.

 

If you wait for him to pick up, it might never happen and you're stuck waiting around, and then you also have to keep an eye on the clock to head out to get the kids again. If you drop them off, it's all on him.

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