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#1 of 21 Old 11-16-2011, 06:13 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I don't feel anxious about the kids telling him what we had for dinner? Seriously, my throat gets all locked up. The past three times they've talked to him (within this week), we have had dinner out: tacos, gyros, and burgers. He used to freak! First for eating out too much and wasting money. Second because it isn't healthy. I know, I know, it's not healthy, but neither is having a mom who is wigging out! I do take them out when I get home late and just can't fit in cooking a good meal before scouts, or science night or whatever. I try. I cook more fresh greens than any one I know. A couple nights a week I will make a full meal, with veggies from scratch. My kids will happily eat turnips and okra in the stews I make. But I just can't make it happen all the time. Soemhow he always asks them what they had for dinner on days it is junk. And I'm sitting in the background anxiety-ridden. Will that go away? Will he at some point not have so much of an impact on the way I feel about myself? 


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#2 of 21 Old 11-16-2011, 06:58 PM
 
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yes, absolutely, there will come a day when his opinions don't mean bupkiss to you, but it takes time and it takes work. I know money and time is beyond tight for you but is there any way you can find a counselor?? I've been seeing my therapist for a year now (just had our anniversary) and it's amazing to me how much it's helped. I still get a little anxious about talking to XH about some things (like the boys meeting my new boyfriend or him needing to buy them clothes) but it's so minimal now. I've discovered that he's gonna react however he does, but it's all ultimately my stuff to deal with, my life to live, my personal guilt to handle.

 

oh, and seriously, the boys and I lived on chicken nuggets, corn dogs, fish sticks and the monthly pot of chili & pasta sauce for a couple of years after XH moved out. I wasn't happy about it but it was the best I could do at the time. I slowly found ways to work better options into the rotation and we eat much better now and we STILL don't eat as many veggies as I know your kids do thumb.gif

 

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#3 of 21 Old 11-17-2011, 04:54 PM
 
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It will absolutely get to a point where you don't care any more! For me it was keeping the house clean. It had to be SPOTLESS when he picked them up and dropped them off. Now I couldn't care less what he thinks!


It's complicated.
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#4 of 21 Old 11-17-2011, 09:05 PM
 
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I know I'm the total oddball on this, but I didn't care for a long time, it's been about a year now....and suddenly, out of nowhere I care about every little thing. I get anxious just thinking about seeing him again and him peeking past my front door.
I hope THAT will go away.

I second the therapist idea. Not that I've managed to find a way to see mine, but I would love to again, she was so _SO_ so helpful!

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#5 of 21 Old 11-17-2011, 11:54 PM
 
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I know how you feel!  We have been split over a year, but are still in hellacious litigation, so I am paranoid about everything...probably to my own detriment.  It is likely I give my ex too much power in this process by worrying about everything so much...

 

So, I have no answers for you, but I feel your pain!

 


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#6 of 21 Old 11-18-2011, 05:48 AM
 
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For me, I think it will be easier when all the legal stuff is settled.  I don't worry much about house/food stuff but still worry about our interactions and how he can spin it against me, etc.


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#7 of 21 Old 11-30-2011, 06:14 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I guess the legal part will make it at least more settled. I feel like I am overthinking every single thing I do right now. 

 

I am looking for a therapist, but it hasn't been easy to find one on insurance who can fit my schedule. I hate that finding a therapist is so hard. There should be some master therapist scheduler out there so when you are in crisis you don't have to do so much work to get help!!

 

But I also just hate that I cringe every time the phone rings. If I have to speak with him my anxiety shoots so high that it wrecks the rest of the night. And he wants to talk to the kids daily, so I end up having to answer or hang up the phone and potentially talk to him daily! I am hating this soooo much.  


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#8 of 21 Old 11-30-2011, 07:40 PM
 
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I third or fourth the therapist thing.  Mine helped me more than I ever would have imagined.

One thing he taught me that I love when dealing with X is 'don't fight about things you agree about'.

So since you agree with X that healthy food is important (and I have this EXACT issue with X).  X has many times nastily said, THESE KIDS NEED TO EAT HEALTHY FOOD" in his most A hole tone of voice.  So in the past I would have screamed back.  But now I can just agree with him and ask him what he suggests.  So I calmly, gently say, "I agree they need healthy food. But I feel like we're eating the same cooked vegetables over and over again.  What do you give them when they're at your house that's healthy and they love?"  And the best thing is he sometimes starts to sputter/stutter out a retort but then realizes there is nothing bad to what I said and he is stuck. 

 

I apply this calm approach to all interaction with him including verbal threats not to pay support. 

X:  I'm not going to give you another dime!

Me: I'm sorry you're upset.  I know you love the kids and would never do that to them. 

X: uh... sputter, uh OK.  yeah.  See you later. 

 

And then keep in mind that if you are unable to do this just try again next time.  I sometimes beat myself up about screaming back or letting him know how I really feel (always a mistake - the conversation in that case goes like this

X:  I'm not giving you another dime b/c three years ago you told my mother I was having an affair

Me not following my own advice: You're allowed to have an affair but I'm not allowed to TELL your mother about it??  And how is that sleazy slut and by the way you'd better not get any ideas about her meeting the kids...

Me following my own advice:  I'm sorry you're upset.  I know you love the kids and would never do that to them. 

 

 

when I hang up the phone after the first conversation my heart sinks and I think he really isn't going to pay support.  when I hand up after the 'I know you love the kids" response I'm pretty confident that things will be ok.

 

Another thing the psychologist taught me is that with ex I do not need to be genuine.  So I would never put up with a friend or new bf yelling at me about eating healthy food but with ex it doesn't matter.  Let it go.  Learn to live in peace.  He can't be changed.

 

With me btw It's not that the kids tell him we eat unhealthy things it's that he assumes we do.  And I do not know anyone -really ANYONE who eats healthier than we do.  This makes it even harder to react gently b/c it's so absurd.

 

But also it does make me thankful every day that I divorced this guy.  Anyone yelling at you about that is just looking to pick a fight with you.   You say you 'cook more fresh greens than anyone you know' so your x knows you're going to want to fight back when you accuses you of just the opposite.  Your gut reaction will be to defend yourself.  Instead just agree with him and get off the phone.  Fast!

 

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#9 of 21 Old 11-30-2011, 07:50 PM
 
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My xh bought my 8 year old a phone so my 8 year old could tattle on me. It s working out great let me tell you. I hate it. the other day we had to stop by there to get a book for ds. DD gets out of car with no shoes on. She took off her shoes in the car. My blood ran cold I know someday I will have to answer for that in court.


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#10 of 21 Old 12-01-2011, 04:19 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Emilie2 View Post

My xh bought my 8 year old a phone so my 8 year old could tattle on me. It s working out great let me tell you. I hate it. the other day we had to stop by there to get a book for ds. DD gets out of car with no shoes on. She took off her shoes in the car. My blood ran cold I know someday I will have to answer for that in court.



If your child told you it was because Daddy said to call him to tattle on you, well, he's going to have to answer to that in court.  And when he states where he got any information, such as above, he's only going to prove what you said. 

 

Trust me, the court will not like the actions of your ex at all.  He's putting the child in the middle and judges don't like that.  In other words, the chances of his actions backfiring on him are very high. 

 

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#11 of 21 Old 12-01-2011, 04:22 AM
 
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So what if you take them out to eat.  They are eating.  Has your ex threatened legal action over the eating out?  If so, he's in for a rude awakening.

 

Do you have caller ID?  If so, when you see it is him calling, let the kids answer the phone.  If not, let it go to voicemail and have the kids call him back.  This way you don't have to talk to him. 

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#12 of 21 Old 12-01-2011, 05:08 AM
 
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Oh and as for the dinner thing- I have bought sandwhiches from a gas station and called it dinner. IT is what it is.


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#13 of 21 Old 12-01-2011, 05:10 AM
 
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Ya- and that's pretty much why  I got full custody was because of his ridiculous antagonizing behaviour. UGh. Sometimes It s so hard like when they don't wear shoes.


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#14 of 21 Old 12-01-2011, 06:52 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Rocky, that's brilliant. I will try so hard to use that not-fighting technique. It is so hard, but I do like the idea. 

 

Also, you said: 
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by rocky View Post

 

But also it does make me thankful every day that I divorced this guy.  Anyone yelling at you about that is just looking to pick a fight with you.   You say you 'cook more fresh greens than anyone you know' so your x knows you're going to want to fight back when you accuses you of just the opposite.  Your gut reaction will be to defend yourself.  Instead just agree with him and get off the phone.  Fast!

 


You totally nailed me on that one. You are so right. Because I care about healthy and already feel guilty about eating out (but, btw, too on the edge of totally losing it to cook all the time) it is a total sore spot. 

 

the ridiculous part is that he doesn't even call me on it. It's just that he has moaned about it for 10 years, so I cringe right away. I might not even speak to him, but as soon as the kids say, 'we're eating burgers' I get all tight in the throat and wiggy. 


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#15 of 21 Old 12-02-2011, 06:19 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Emilie2 View Post

My xh bought my 8 year old a phone so my 8 year old could tattle on me. It s working out great let me tell you. I hate it. the other day we had to stop by there to get a book for ds. DD gets out of car with no shoes on. She took off her shoes in the car. My blood ran cold I know someday I will have to answer for that in court.


 

Why don't you have your 8 year old leave the phone at his house then?  Not only is it annoying, but that's a horrible position to put your kids in and really not good for them.  Having to leave this phone at his house should solve the issue.  (I'm just waiting for this to become an issue at my house.  My 9 year old has been asking for one and he would text his dad every time he was the slightest unhappy and say i was being "mean").  

 

Ask your attorney, but I don't think any judge is going to say that an 8 year old needs a cell phone for any reason.


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#16 of 21 Old 12-02-2011, 06:50 AM
 
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ya... it's a pain. Luckily xh has been calling ds on his nonsense. But i know everything gets written down to be heard someday in court.

At least that's my fear.


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#17 of 21 Old 12-04-2011, 07:25 PM
 
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I am really sorry to hear that you spilled lemonade all over your child's phone, and that she turned it on and fried it before you could help her dry it out....to me, your reaction of walking on eggshells is just proof that you were in an abusive relationship.  I do it too!  When court is done, you can blow it off.  While you are paying your atty, find out what can be used against you.  Barefoot kids are not interesting to CPS here, or to divorce judges.  I really breathed a sigh of relief after our last court date in Oct. But I may have to go back soon, and will start the same ptsd reactions as you.  Have you read Why does He do That?  by Lundy Bancroft? 

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#18 of 21 Old 12-04-2011, 09:34 PM
 
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I know my x is documenting everything he possibly can, just in case. It's unnerving still, after all this time. But I'm in a different state now so the geographic space between us helps. And I also liked "Why Does He Do That".


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#19 of 21 Old 12-05-2011, 06:30 AM
 
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No but I have heard it said before to read it.... I really should. I read the verbal abuse book by pam evans that helped me a lot. I may check this out.


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#20 of 21 Old 12-05-2011, 10:58 AM
 
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Reading "Why Does He Do That?" made a huge difference in my ability to see stbxh for that type of person he really is and to reaffirm my feelings.  (Because after 10 years, I was starting to doubt my sanity/perceptions a bit.)   I highly recommend it.  


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#21 of 21 Old 12-20-2011, 05:26 AM
 
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"Why Does He Do That?" helped me a lot too to let go of the walking on eggshells bit.

 

It does get easier over time... and the more you do for yourself and build yourself up, and just reclaim yourself, it gets much much easier.

 

If EX gets verbally abusive, I simply hang up the phone. I let it go to voicemail, or text. Disengaging is some of the best advice I received here, it takes time to find the strength to do it. I know the anxious/cringe/waiting for the explosion feeling all to well.... but each time you stand up for yourself and ignore his belittling, you gain another piece of yourself back and it's so empowering.

 

Be gentle with yourself on eating out. You are doing the best you can. You are doing the job of two people. Remember that. You are human and you can only do the best you can with what you have. If anyone wants to judge you for that, ignore them. You know your truth. Your ex can rant all he wants to your voicemail about it. If he wants the kids to eat better... he can come over and make them dinner. He can bring a healthy dinner to them. Nothing stops these Dads from providing more or doing the things they expect YOU to do. They just like to rant and rave, because it's who they always have been. And you already know, no matter what you do, they will find something to rant about. So, just let it go... *hugs*


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