Ex dh is divorcing again. DD losing stepmom.. Its Monday!! Party time! - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 84 Old 10-13-2007, 02:49 PM - Thread Starter
 
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So this is probably an odd post.. but I need to talk about this.

My ex husband told me the other day that they are divorcing. They've been married about 4 years, together 6 years. I'm not sure if anyone remembers my ranting before in this forum, but basically.. when my ex got together with her, they took my daughter from me. The judge awarded him residential because he made more money that I did and they thought that was more important at the time. DD was 4 when she went to live with her father. Life for her has been pretty stable there. Emotionally things have always been rough. She doesn't get much time with her dad, or time in their house.. she's on the go a lot because they over schedule her so she's being babysat. They both worked jobs that required a lot of hours, and when they weren't working.. they partied and things like that. Instead of being with me during those times, I was left out in the dark and my dd was shuffled around to friends houses etc.

So now.. they are divorcing. (he told me that the step mother was cheating on him with multiple women. Not that it matters any, except that he did tell me the reason) My daughter is understandably, devastated. She doesn't remember our divorce, she was only 2 years old. This one she is involved in. Her step mother didn't do a lot of "mothering" stuff. But she was the one who bought her things, and shuffled her to activities. She was *there* and she had a relationship with her. When she was 4, this transition to having another mother was hard for her. My ex did a lot of things wrong, like forcing her to call her "Mommy" and trying to alienate me. However my daughter and I have worked past that. We have a very strong relationship despite things her dad has done.

So now, my 9 year old daughter is depressed. She isn't eating. She's crying all the time, and she's misrable. She hasn't seen her home over there in over two weeks because she's shuffled around so much. When her sm picks her up from an activity, she bring her to her new place. When her grandmother picks her up she brings her to her house, etc.. so she's sleeping at 4 or 5 different places and not at her house. They get up extra early in the morning to drive her to her house so she can get on the bus and go to school, so thats not disrupted.. but gosh.. so much else is. I've been through a divorce and I know its a crazy time, but this arrangement really stinks.

Honestly, this would be a great time to go back to court and get my daughter back. He's unstable, things are difficult. He lost the only support he had, etc... However.. its not the right thing to do. As much as I would love to have my daughter back full time, right now that would be one more huge change in her life and I don't want to do that to her. I do however, want things to be more stable.

I called him and expressed my concerns. He seemed to have the same ones but was unsure of what to do about it. He said things will be crazy for awhile until he knows whats happening. I understand this.

His goal is to move to the next town over from me and change her school to there during the summer. I told him that I'd like to see her with me, when he has to work.. instead of bouncing around with different people. It makes sense that she have a stable place to be. His job is demanding with odd hours and triple shifts sometimes. I know his job is important to him. However, my daughter is important to. I know he's unhappy about me asking that she stay with me nights when he is unable to be there, but honestly.. is it out of line to ask that?? I thought that would be more preferable to me taking him back to court for everyone involved.

My daughter is moarning the loss of her dog as well. I guess he gave her dog to the stb ex.

For now, the step mother is still driving her places and picking her up etc.. but she no longer lives with her. This situation is hard on my dd. She's uncomfortable, but at the same time loves her step mother. kwim? I cannot imagine what it feels like for my daughter and my heart breaks not knowing what I can do to help. Knowing what would make it worse.. and knowing as her mother I do have to do something. I have to advocate for stability and to try to be involved as much as I can.

My daughter isn't one that likes people sugar coating things. I've let her know that even though the step mother is involved right now, soon she won't be as much. And honestly, even if there was an open policy to see her stb ex step mother.. I don't think it would be in dd's best interest. She already has such a hard time splitting herself between parents she HAS to be with.. let alone ones that are no longer in that capacity anymore. A gentle but thorough switch is needed I believe.

Ugh. The whole thing is so hard to sort in my head. Between watching her hurt, and doing whats right for her regardless of what I want to do. My ex and his stb ex wife have never been even civil to me. They've left me out, degraded me, lied to me, lied to my daughter, etc.. the list really goes on and on. Thats why its so hard for me to sit back and be a mother to my daughter and try to support her.. and yet not do what I really want to do.
So many negative things have come from my ex and his marraige. So many things my daughter and I overcame. So I am happy they are divorcing. I'm happy she'll be out of the picture. HOWEVER... I know this isn't a happy thing for my daughter. I have expressed NO happiness to her about this. Its entirely my secret. My only concern is my daughter and how to help her during this time.

I realize this post is spotty and a huge run on sentence. I apologize. I'd really like some support about this. I realize I'm taking the higher road for my daughter, and as much as its a good thing... it really doesn't feel it sometimes.

Please don't flame me. I'm trying to do the best thing for my dd right now.

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#2 of 84 Old 10-13-2007, 03:25 PM
 
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Ugh...you'll get no flames from me, but big props for understanding that while you (justifiably, from what I've read, she sounds like a real piece of work) are glad the woman's going away, it's hard for your daughter.

It's completely NOT out of line for you to ask to have your daughter when he can't -- that's totally reasonable. Your kiddo is going through a tough transition right now -- she needs her mom, she needs her dad, but the last thing she needs is multiple caregivers (even Grandma) unless it's completely unavoidable.

As for SM's continued interaction with your daughter...I really don't know if a complete cut-off would be in her best interest (so much depends on the circumstances and the individual, and you're in a better place to judge than us strangers on the Internet), but I know what you're saying. Realistically, things do taper off. I know, if something happened between my SO and I, I'd try to keep a relationship with my SD but it would be hard and likely would become infrequent...more like a free babysitter than anything. (Keep in mind some states do allow stepparents to petition for visitation...so that may come up.)

The high road is a good one...yeah, it doesn't feel so good at the time, but it will in the long run. (Short-term gloating/revenge/etc. can be fun, but it's short-lived, and collateral damage can be great.)

Best of luck to you.

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#3 of 84 Old 10-13-2007, 03:41 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Do you have any knowledge on how prevalent this step parent visitation is in the state of Maine? Is it something that I would have a say in at all?

Seeing her stb ex step mother I am not against, however.. keeping her in the role of step parent when she is no longer isn't something that is going to be easy on my daughter. She already has so many issues with feelings of conflicted loyalty, and betrayal.. and I do not think my ex husband will be able to effectively co parent with TWO ex's. As his "effectiveness" is already in question with just one.

I thought if this day ever came, I'd be overjoyed.. but seeing her in pain isn't much fun at all. The situation is a whole lot of :

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#4 of 84 Old 10-13-2007, 04:02 PM
 
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Do you have any knowledge on how prevalent this step parent visitation is in the state of Maine? Is it something that I would have a say in at all?

Seeing her stb ex step mother I am not against, however.. keeping her in the role of step parent when she is no longer isn't something that is going to be easy on my daughter. She already has so many issues with feelings of conflicted loyalty, and betrayal.. and I do not think my ex husband will be able to effectively co parent with TWO ex's. As his "effectiveness" is already in question with just one.

I thought if this day ever came, I'd be overjoyed.. but seeing her in pain isn't much fun at all. The situation is a whole lot of :
I'm not really sure -- I found some conflicting information. It appears the specific provision of the Maine code allowing stepparents to pursue visitation has been repealed, but later case law still says stepparents can pursue visitation (custody only if the living parents are unfit) if it's in the best interest of the child. (Case law governs if there's no statute.) I'd imagine, if you can articulate why it wouldn't be in the best interest of the child, you could say something. (Talk to a lawyer, though. I'm not one yet, and not in Maine.)

That said...my gut tells me few stepparents pursue formal visitation, because it creates legal ties to their ex that they may not want.

However, if your ex wanted the SM to see your daughter, he probably could let her without court involvement (just like married and divorced parents everywhere take their kids to visit grandparents, friends, etc. For instance, even though my SO does not care at all for his ex-mother-in-law, and wouldn't cry if he never saw her again, his ex can still take their daughter to see her during her time; we can take my SD to visit my parents -- even leave her with them as babysitters -- during our time). It's when it becomes formal, enforceable visitation that the courts get involved.

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#5 of 84 Old 10-13-2007, 04:09 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm not really sure -- I found some conflicting information. It appears the specific provision of the Maine code allowing stepparents to pursue visitation has been repealed, but later case law still says stepparents can pursue visitation (custody only if the living parents are unfit) if it's in the best interest of the child. (Case law governs if there's no statute.) I'd imagine, if you can articulate why it wouldn't be in the best interest of the child, you could say something. (Talk to a lawyer, though. I'm not one yet, and not in Maine.)

That said...my gut tells me few stepparents pursue formal visitation, because it creates legal ties to their ex that they may not want.

However, if your ex wanted the SM to see your daughter, he probably could let her without court involvement (just like married and divorced parents everywhere take their kids to visit grandparents, friends, etc. For instance, even though my SO does not care at all for his ex-mother-in-law, and wouldn't cry if he never saw her again, his ex can still take their daughter to see her during her time; we can take my SD to visit my parents -- even leave her with them as babysitters -- during our time). It's when it becomes formal, enforceable visitation that the courts get involved.
Yes, I don't mind if during his time my daughter sees her. I just really don't want an additional parent that isn't a parent at teacher conferences and things that are parental things. Its been so hard on her as it is. I am not against them having a continued friendship/relationship. I'd just rather her not have authority in that manner. Its been so hard dealing with the two of them, I can only imagine dealing with both of them seperatly would be a nightmare. And honestly, I cannot imagine being squeezed out of the picture any more than I already have been... by a former step parent.

I know some families that the mother or father has been remarried multiple times. (more than four) How many visitation requests by step parents can be stacked on top of one another? There has to be a limit to how many acting "parents" a child can have.

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#6 of 84 Old 10-13-2007, 06:45 PM
 
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I can't imagine courts going with anything other than token visitation for a former stepparent (unless the other biological parent is dead or unfit and that stepparent has been a long-term de facto parent -- i.e. Mom died, Dad remarried, and 10 years later, they divorce without an adoption). Something to preserve contact, but not to mandate overnights or more.

Then again, judges have done some crazy things...family law is like that, though. Judges get super-broad discretion.

And I agree fully with your other point -- ex-SM shouldn't be going to parent/teacher conferences or similar. Heck, I don't go to parent/teacher conferences and won't (although if SD lived with us during the school week, I might, but only if SD's mom couldn't make it over), unless there's a specific reason.

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#7 of 84 Old 10-14-2007, 03:27 PM
 
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i don;'t think it is out of line at all to ask for your dd or even to go to court. First of all you are her mother and she should be with you. She needs stability and you sound like the only stable person in her life right now. You are not change ~ you are a constant. She needs you. The poor kid sounds like she is sleeping in a different place every night. it is right for you to bring her home. there is no reason she should be at other peoples homes when she has a parent who can be a source of stability for her.

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#8 of 84 Old 10-14-2007, 05:30 PM
 
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So this is probably an odd post.. but I need to talk about this.

My ex husband told me the other day that they are divorcing. They've been married about 4 years, together 6 years. I'm not sure if anyone remembers my ranting before in this forum, but basically.. when my ex got together with her, they took my daughter from me. The judge awarded him residential because he made more money that I did and they thought that was more important at the time. DD was 4 when she went to live with her father. Life for her has been pretty stable there. Emotionally things have always been rough. She doesn't get much time with her dad, or time in their house.. she's on the go a lot because they over schedule her so she's being babysat. They both worked jobs that required a lot of hours, and when they weren't working.. they partied and things like that. Instead of being with me during those times, I was left out in the dark and my dd was shuffled around to friends houses etc.

So now.. they are divorcing. (he told me that the step mother was cheating on him with multiple women. Not that it matters any, except that he did tell me the reason) My daughter is understandably, devastated. She doesn't remember our divorce, she was only 2 years old. This one she is involved in. Her step mother didn't do a lot of "mothering" stuff. But she was the one who bought her things, and shuffled her to activities. She was *there* and she had a relationship with her. When she was 4, this transition to having another mother was hard for her. My ex did a lot of things wrong, like forcing her to call her "Mommy" and trying to alienate me. However my daughter and I have worked past that. We have a very strong relationship despite things her dad has done.

So now, my 9 year old daughter is depressed. She isn't eating. She's crying all the time, and she's misrable. She hasn't seen her home over there in over two weeks because she's shuffled around so much. When her sm picks her up from an activity, she bring her to her new place. When her grandmother picks her up she brings her to her house, etc.. so she's sleeping at 4 or 5 different places and not at her house. They get up extra early in the morning to drive her to her house so she can get on the bus and go to school, so thats not disrupted.. but gosh.. so much else is. I've been through a divorce and I know its a crazy time, but this arrangement really stinks.

Honestly, this would be a great time to go back to court and get my daughter back. He's unstable, things are difficult. He lost the only support he had, etc... However.. its not the right thing to do. As much as I would love to have my daughter back full time, right now that would be one more huge change in her life and I don't want to do that to her. I do however, want things to be more stable.

I called him and expressed my concerns. He seemed to have the same ones but was unsure of what to do about it. He said things will be crazy for awhile until he knows whats happening. I understand this.

His goal is to move to the next town over from me and change her school to there during the summer. I told him that I'd like to see her with me, when he has to work.. instead of bouncing around with different people. It makes sense that she have a stable place to be. His job is demanding with odd hours and triple shifts sometimes. I know his job is important to him. However, my daughter is important to. I know he's unhappy about me asking that she stay with me nights when he is unable to be there, but honestly.. is it out of line to ask that?? I thought that would be more preferable to me taking him back to court for everyone involved.

My daughter is moarning the loss of her dog as well. I guess he gave her dog to the stb ex.

For now, the step mother is still driving her places and picking her up etc.. but she no longer lives with her. This situation is hard on my dd. She's uncomfortable, but at the same time loves her step mother. kwim? I cannot imagine what it feels like for my daughter and my heart breaks not knowing what I can do to help. Knowing what would make it worse.. and knowing as her mother I do have to do something. I have to advocate for stability and to try to be involved as much as I can.

My daughter isn't one that likes people sugar coating things. I've let her know that even though the step mother is involved right now, soon she won't be as much. And honestly, even if there was an open policy to see her stb ex step mother.. I don't think it would be in dd's best interest. She already has such a hard time splitting herself between parents she HAS to be with.. let alone ones that are no longer in that capacity anymore. A gentle but thorough switch is needed I believe.

Ugh. The whole thing is so hard to sort in my head. Between watching her hurt, and doing whats right for her regardless of what I want to do. My ex and his stb ex wife have never been even civil to me. They've left me out, degraded me, lied to me, lied to my daughter, etc.. the list really goes on and on. Thats why its so hard for me to sit back and be a mother to my daughter and try to support her.. and yet not do what I really want to do.
So many negative things have come from my ex and his marraige. So many things my daughter and I overcame. So I am happy they are divorcing. I'm happy she'll be out of the picture. HOWEVER... I know this isn't a happy thing for my daughter. I have expressed NO happiness to her about this. Its entirely my secret. My only concern is my daughter and how to help her during this time.

I realize this post is spotty and a huge run on sentence. I apologize. I'd really like some support about this. I realize I'm taking the higher road for my daughter, and as much as its a good thing... it really doesn't feel it sometimes.

Please don't flame me. I'm trying to do the best thing for my dd right now.
Do you think that maybe one BIG change (moving in with you and being in a stable environment) is better than LOTS of continual little changes that are going to continue for how long? Obviously, only you know if being with you most of the time is really the best situation (are you able to provide for both of you?). From what you've said, it seems like you really know your daughter better than any other people involved. You are her MOTHER. I would think, of course - if he isn't able to be with her, she should be with you. I applaud your concern and level-headedness in all of this. I can't imagine going through all you've gone through. You are amazing - you have handled all you've been put through with such grace, and the fact that you are looking out for your daughters' best interests (whatever that may be) - Thank you for being such a wonderful mother to your daughter.
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#9 of 84 Old 10-14-2007, 11:18 PM
 
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I just wanted to step in and offer you some support. My kids' dad and his wife are divorcing right now, too. Our over-all situation is different (50/50 custody), but still, it hurts to watch them feel confused and frustrated.

I hope things get settled for your DD very soon. to you both.

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#10 of 84 Old 10-14-2007, 11:50 PM
 
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Do you think that maybe one BIG change (moving in with you and being in a stable environment) is better than LOTS of continual little changes that are going to continue for how long?
I agree! No need to go to court and get sole custody--but this sounds like a good time to get a new custody arrangement. Do you really think that if your ex retains primary custody, your DD won't keep getting shuffled around like crazy, now that he'd be a single dad?
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#11 of 84 Old 10-15-2007, 09:55 AM
 
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First, a few things. I've been advised that DH may or may not have an automatic right to contact the boys if he and I divorce: he has parental responsibility for my children through what's called a residence order over here. This would not hold in the event of a separation, and doesn't trump the joint custody ex has if I die, but will leave DH with the right to see my sons if I die. Therefore, the other woman involved may not be an issue legally.
Based on everything you've said about this man, you need to go back to court and apply for joint custody (I'd seek legal advice on whether to ask for full or not). This is NOT a time for being nice. This is not a time for being compassionate. This is a time for thinking what's best for your little girl, and in order to make sure that you are part of that decision-making process, you need legal recognition as her parent.
You know I have strong views on men who seek full custody of children and take them from their mothers, especially at such a young age, but that isn't what's governing my decision so much as knowing how much it hurts my DS1 that his dad could see him more, could do more for him and doesn't.
- and a big to her, too. Alex was up crying all night because he was afraid DH and I were splitting up, so I can sympathise with how hard it must be for her- and all her parents.
One other thing- don't try to do this without a lawyer. This man cannot be trusted to act like a decent human being, unless you've exaggerated wildly.

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#12 of 84 Old 10-15-2007, 11:04 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm not sure if I was clear on one thing, we do have shared custody 50/50 in paper. We also have shared residential on paper, however she goes to school where he lives.

He lives in a town nearly an hour from me. I have two other young children and it would be impossible to get up early enough to get her ready for school, drive an hour, etc.. so, the arrangement is that he has her during the week and I have her every weekend, we split holidays, and she's supposed to be with me when he cannot watch her. Thats how its been for the past 5 years.

On paper I'm supposed to have her every other weekend, and every wednesday and thursday. But because of the distance and school situation, we changed it to every weekend instead. In my mind it seemed to minimize the back and forth switching just a little bit. The court judgement had her going to his house every few days, then my house, then with me for the weekend, then not at mine the next, .. it was kinda crazy. This way we had something concrete and solid every single week. Of course things come up and we switch things around to accommodate each other. (well.. me more than him but thats besides the point)

My daughter has told me that right now she doesn't want me changing where she lives. I really think for her that would be too much of a huge change. School, friends, family.. it would all change.

I don't have the money to get a lawyer anyway, and the free one I had last time didn't work out quite so well... :

Anyway, thank you for the support everyone. I appreciate it. I really just want to do whats best for her in all of this. As much as I'd love to have all my girls together in the same house 24/7.. I just don't feel right doing that to her. I'd rather be her constant here and not be the one that made things worse.

IF her father doesn't find a way to make things easier on her soon, I will talk to him about taking her. I doubt he'd agree... but I will at least voice it. Unfortunately, money seems to make a lot of the decisions regarding where children go around here. He still makes more than I do. (I'm on SSDI) and he always will make more than me. So in the eyes of the court, he's probably still the best parent. I hate how some people view money..

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#13 of 84 Old 10-21-2007, 09:55 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I talked to my ex yesterday and told him my dd needs to come stay with me for now. Whether its temporary until he gets on his feet, it doesn't matter. She just needs to be someplace stable. I want to help her, and I want to let him see her when he has time instead of the situation now. He doesn't see her much at all, and she lives there. I want to work WITH him to do whats right for her. I told him that it wouldn't take much to transfer her to school here, and though it would suck to tranfer schools for her... one big change would be a lot better than a million little ones all the time.
(thank you to whoever said this before... it really stuck with me. You're right.)

I talked with my daughter more this weekend about it, we talked A LOT. She agrees with me that the situation is not a good one. She said she doesn't know where she's going to be sleeping any night. Even though she knows everyone, it still stinks that she doesn't seem to have a "home" there right now. And since her stb ex stepmom told her exactly why she left her father.. my daughter is really uncomfortable being around her. She said to her, "Do you know why I'm living here with A?" "Yes." "But do you REALLY know why?" "Umm... yes. I'm pretty sure." "I'm living here because A and I are lovers now. We're girlfriend and girlfriend." and then my daughter said the rest of the night the two of them were rubbing each other, kissing, and calling each other babe and honey. She said, "It was just like you and daddy.... it was weird."

I have nothing against those who chose to love the same gender. (I went through a time when I was younger where I slept with a woman myself. Pre kids. ) So I really am not against that. And I've taught my daughter to accept that as well. We know several women who are lesbians. Its not a big deal.

The big deal is this sudden change. A week ago her stb ex stepmom was with her dad and loving her dad, and now suddenly she moved out and is loving up on not just another person, but a woman. And my daughter is confused. Its all happened so fast for her.

My ex had no idea that his stb ex said those things to my daughter. He wasn't happy about it and said it was completely unnecessary. He had no idea that she brought her to the house and made her help her pack her things the day she left. It really as if the stb ex step mom has no idea how much all this hurt my daughter. Selfish...
My daughter just wants her to be gone if she's going.

So.. my daughter is willing to try living here. (she left when she was 4 1/2. .. she has few memories of living with me so its a new thing for her)

As much as I would love my daughter to live here for the rest of her childhood.. she's my daughter after all! I want whats best for her, and if after my ex is settled and has appropriate child care or worked something out we agree on... and she wants to go back.. I will let her. I want her to be happy AND safe. My goal is not to take her away from him like he did to me. I know she has accepted it at his house, and its all she really knows. So I know it will be different and hard for her..

She plans on talking with her father later on today with me. I want her to finally be able to tell him HER thoughts. He's going to tell her all the things that would suck about living with me, I know that. And I was honest about the things that WOULD change.. while telling her about the positive things that would be cool too.

I was sad to hear that the stb ex step mother wasn't respectful about my relationship with my daughter at all. I didn't realize to what extent though. She actually told my daughter that because she didn't have as many toys or clothes over here as she did over there... that she didn't have to visit me if she didn't want to. "If you don't want to see your mom ever again, I can make that happen. You don't have to see her.." : My daughter said she talked like that all the time and it was obvious to her that she was trying to get me out of the picture totally. She called me names to my daughter, talked about my life, money, house, .. etc.. it just goes on and on. The judgment about me when she doesn't even know me..

Its really sad I guess. I never had anything against her. I was always polite to her, and never talked about her behind her back or said things. I respected that she was trying to build a relationship with my dd. Or I guess we thought she was. Its obvious now that she was only it in for show or something.. there is no caring there for my dd now.

Ugh.. okay this is a book and I'm rambling now.

I just wanted to update everyone and to ask for some positive thoughts for tonight. I really want to do whats best for my daughter, and I really really need my ex to come with an open mind and put aside the hatred he's held for me for so long. Please, please... I need some positive vibes for tonight.

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#14 of 84 Old 10-21-2007, 10:29 AM
 
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Good thoughts and good luck, Nature.

It really sounds like your daughter's soon-to-be-ex-stepmom (STBXSM? yikes) has done just about everything wrong. I have a friend who came out, mid-marriage, at 35--and she and her ex went through a long, difficult coming-to-terms with it, including family counseling, to minimize the disruption on their son, and it was still tough... STBXSM seems more like a cheater who happened to cheat with a woman.

This woman sounds like poison.

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#15 of 84 Old 10-21-2007, 10:53 AM
 
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i don;'t think it is out of line at all to ask for your dd or even to go to court. First of all you are her mother and she should be with you. She needs stability and you sound like the only stable person in her life right now. You are not change ~ you are a constant. She needs you. The poor kid sounds like she is sleeping in a different place every night. it is right for you to bring her home. there is no reason she should be at other peoples homes when she has a parent who can be a source of stability for her.
: I would weigh this with her not wanting to change schools. I wish you could move to her town! But whatever happens with regard to the town she lives in, you have a right, I feel even an obligation, and a perfect opportunity to stand up for her needs right now.

I would also start a journal and document everything. Because while affection is wonderful whatever the genders involved, I'm concerned from your description that your ex's stb ex may be going past appropriate limits about physical contact with her partner, in front of your child.

Take the time to heal from your marriage before you move on with someone else. Make a list of all the qualities you would like in a new partner and then work on growing that way yourself. ~mandib50
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#16 of 84 Old 10-21-2007, 12:12 PM
 
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Many hugs to you! I hope this works out well and that things get steady and settled for all of you.

I want to second what a PP said: start documenting everything. It doesn't have to be super detailed, but good documentation is everything if you end up having to do something in court. I've made the mistake of not documenting enough because I get along pretty well with my eldest children's dad, but that bit me in the butt eventually. If you don't need your notes, all the better, but better to have them just in case.

Oh, and I think it's wonderful that you're staying so flexible while looking what will work best in the long run for your DD. Very admirable, and it will for sure benefit your girl!

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#17 of 84 Old 10-22-2007, 12:42 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you so much everyone for your positive thoughts tonight!! Something out there must have worked... because my ex husband was pleasant, honest, open, and easy to talk to tonight. He agreed with me that my dd was not in a stable environment there and agreed that she should be with me. We both talked with her, and she is happy with what was decided. She was able to talk to him and be honest because she knew he wasn't going to tell her stbxsm and she wasn't going to be able to start a war.

We actually hugged each other and agreed to do this together for her. We haven't done that in 9 years. It was... nice, and kind of scary.

I'm going tomorrow to get the paperwork to transfer her to this school. Our custody arrangement is "shared rights and responsibilities, and shared residential" so that shouldn't be a problem.

He even offered money. I told him I didn't expect anything but if he can help me out, thats great and I won't turn it down. He also said anything I need to let him know, and he'll help out. He said this is the best thing for him as well right now.

I'm in shock still and waiting to wake up.

Of course, she's not here yet. I wanted her to go to school tomorrow at least and say her goodbyes and things. If he can make sure that someone appropriate like her grandmother is watching her at night, then she can stay a few days for school. He's going to give me most of her clothes and things so I don't have to buy more, and I'll call him tomorrow to let him know about the school paperwork. He said if I need him to sign anything or write anything, just let him know.



This is the man that fought for custody when she was 4 and took happiness in ripping her away from me. Two weeks ago he told me he was getting another divorce... and now he's willingly letting our dd come live with me. Its all kinda : for me to wrap my head around.

I am thrilled, and happy, and excited... and... scared. This will be new for me. I've never had a child in school that wasn't preschool.

Thank you so much for listening to me ramble. And think of me in the next few days please. She's not here yet, and that always means with my ex that theres room for a complete turn around in attitude. I really hope that he sticks with this decision and we can move forward.

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#18 of 84 Old 10-22-2007, 04:50 AM
 
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, Nature. I'm so, so happy for you.

Helen mum to five and mistress of mess and mayhem, making merry and mischief til the sun goes down.
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#19 of 84 Old 10-22-2007, 08:28 AM
 
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Wow Nature! That is just wonderful - I hope things work out perfectly for everyone!
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#20 of 84 Old 10-22-2007, 09:00 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you! :

I'm still reeling. I could barely sleep last night. It feels like christmas.

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#21 of 84 Old 10-22-2007, 09:44 AM
 
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What a wonderful update!!!

He who can no longer pause to wonder and stand rapt in awe is as good as dead; his eyes are closed.  ~Albert Einstein
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#22 of 84 Old 10-22-2007, 10:30 AM
 
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I've got my fingers and toes crossed for you!

Are you expecting that she start school in your district before the end of the week?

Keep us updated!
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#23 of 84 Old 10-22-2007, 10:40 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I've got my fingers and toes crossed for you!

Are you expecting that she start school in your district before the end of the week?

Keep us updated!
We're both hoping so, yes. His work situation is crazy and that means she'll be bouncing around. He agreed to get her grandmother to watch her at HIS house while he's working so she doesn't have to sleep everywhere last night, tonight, until she's here.

I'm going to the school in about an hour to see how to go about doing this. Wish me luck! Hopefully its a quick and painless transfer. I mean, if we had moved here .. they wouldn't want to keep her out of school that long yanno? So there has to be a quick way to do it.

hopefully.

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#24 of 84 Old 10-22-2007, 11:09 AM
 
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I'm so glad things are working out for you and your dd. This sounds like a MUCH better situation for her.

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#25 of 84 Old 10-22-2007, 11:11 AM
 
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What a great outcome! I've been lurking, and keeping my fingers crossed for you.

It stinks that it took years to get to this point with your ex, but I hope that the good will between you both continues. I hope that the transition goes smoothly and that you all enjoy the new arrangement.

Best wishes to you all!
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#26 of 84 Old 10-22-2007, 11:27 AM
 
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I'm happy for the outcome. Be sure to continue documenting everything. I hope dh's good will toward you continues. Hope that it does, but make plans in case it does not would be my advice.

Take the time to heal from your marriage before you move on with someone else. Make a list of all the qualities you would like in a new partner and then work on growing that way yourself. ~mandib50
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#27 of 84 Old 10-22-2007, 04:50 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Like I expected, when I called my ex today he tried to change his mind. He said why don't we wait a few months? A few weeks? Can we slow down? Can we not do this right now? Give him time.. he needs to think.. he needs to make sure he's doing this for the right reasons .. that this is a good idea... etc etc.. "My ex is out of the picture now! I talked to her and she won't see dd anymore. Dd doesn't want to see her. She's pissed, but she's out.. so.. we don't have to do this anymore.. she can stay here.. I'll call work and change my schedule.. I'll.. I'll find a babysitter.. I'll..."

He asked if I had a problem with not going through with this right now. I said, "Actually I do. I've already transferred all her school paperwork. I told you I was going this morning to do it, and thats what I did. Her teacher also called me because dd told her that she was moving to my house and her teacher wants to throw her a goodbye party. We talked for about a half hour and she's very supportive of this. She feels dd will do great. I'm only waiting on a call from the bus company in our town to see what time it picks up.. other than that... its all done."

Oh.

Well uh... can we wait until next week? Can she finish this week off?

"Yes. Yes she can. Do you want to call her school and let them know what her last day will be?"

No. Since you already talked to her teacher.. you can go ahead and do that..

But.. what happens a year from now if I want her back?

"If she is unhappy here, and wants to be back with you... and your situation is stable for her.. she can go back with you! I have no desire to keep her where she doesn't want to be. And likewise I hope if a year from now she's happy where she is... you will respect her decision if its to stay here. She's old enough now. I think its important we both listen to her."

I asked him, since I usually have her on weekends..does he want her this weekend since I'll have her during the week.

No.. I'm working. Just have her for the weekend too.

....

I got his address for the paperwork because I left that off since I didn't know it. I asked for his insurance information to add that too. I let him know he was on the pick up list. I asked if he had anyone else from his family he wanted me to add to the list... he said no.

I asked if he wanted me to make sure the school put in two folders for paperwork to go home every week. He said no. He barely reads it anyway and its just a hassle for him. Okay.. what about report cards? Do you want me to have the school mail one to you? Do you want your own copy?

No.. just show it to me. I don't keep them anyway.. I just look at them..

He said to come down to his house on Sunday so we can help bring back some of her stuff to our house, her clothes and things.

I told him I'd call both schools and let them know her last day would be this Friday and she'd start here on Monday. He said okay. I told him, "If I call them and tell them Friday.. I don't want you calling me back and changing your mind again. Because we can't keep going back and forth after we agree you know? I mean, what am I supposed to tell dd? Even though we both talked to her and agreed... now you've changed your mind? We can't do that to her. She's already excited about this change, don't confuse her more. "

He said he wouldn't and Friday was fine.

But he sighed a lot in the conversation. He said he had no family support that agreed with him. (they all hate me) I told him I know it was hard for him, and sudden.. but it really is best. And I want him to be able to SEE her on his days off instead of what it is now. I honestly want him to be able to call me up and say HEY! I have the day off.. can I pick her up after school?? But I have a feeling that without a regular schedule on his part.. he won't be able to be regular with dd.. and because he's not regular.. he won't make it priority. Which is kinda sad really. I want them to have more time together than they do now. I want to help that.

I guess he talked to someone who he thought would be neutral and they weren't. They totally told him he was doing the wrong thing. He also talked to his stb ex and let her know she was out of the picture as far as our daughter goes. Our daughter does not want to see her. stbex was pissed at him he said. So I'm guessing she probably said a lot of things to him about her coming to live with me.. most likely like.. "Oh, I see.. now that I'm not there to take care of YOUR daughter and do all the work.. you just ship her back to her mothers! What a man you are! What?? Can't find a way to screw around with other women while you're a single dad??!" or something like that. Because he was second guessing his motivation for this change and not feeling like he was doing it for the right reasons. He said he felt selfish. I assured him that while it might have perks for him, I think its best for dd too. I have no idea if the conversation with his ex went anything like that... but I know my ex, and most likely it did. All it takes is one person to say the opposite of what he feels.. and he doubts himself.

I told you all... give him 24 hours and he can totally change.

I'm really hoping that this is a done deal, but until she gets on the bus Monday morning... I won't feel at ease.

It took me all day at the school filling out paperwork. My hand is still cramped up.. it was pretty easy. No one even asked to see my custody papers at all. But it still took a lot of time out of my day to do.. and my anxiety level is sky high.

Please keep us in your thoughts! 6 days is a LOoooooooong time for my ex to sit and think about this.

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#28 of 84 Old 10-22-2007, 06:25 PM
 
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I rarely am in the section but as a Mama with a child who lives his Dad, I had been following your situation. Hoping things will work out without too much more chaos.

It really sounds like your dd needs to be with you right now and hopefully your ex will get that through his head, its not about you two its about your child. Sounds like he is cut from the same cloth as my ex who recently moved back to the midwest because his lady friend was tired of New England. In our case the ex refused to listen to our son who is almost 16 was uprooted to frickin WI in his sophmore year of HS :. When ds turns 16 though in Feb if he wants to come back here to me his Dad said he will let him come but like you I see drama.



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#29 of 84 Old 10-22-2007, 06:41 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Shay I know its been hard for you without your son. You are the only other mama I've ever known in a situation like mine.. I was so glad when you shared your own story with me before as the "non custodial" mom. Because so many people think things that aren't true when they find that out. The mother not having the child?! Unheard of!! You must have done something wrong!! : I really hope that your son gets to decide for himself soon where he wants to be. He's far old enough to help in those decisions.

I was really hoping this would be a smooth transition for my dd. I am hoping and praying that he just lets it go right now. She needs this.. and obviously I can handle this. (Hey, I managed to register her for school and transfer her records and contact all the parties involved on my own! I've never done this before and I did okay. I think I can do this.)

Its my hope that my ex won't contact me at all this week. Her school thing has already been done, a last day given, etc. I emailed her teacher a little while ago to let her know about her last day so they can give her a little goodbye party.

After all of that, how can he really back out now? The school knows the reason for the transfer. Her teacher asked me, and I told her. He's going through a divorce, dd was staying with different people every night because the nature of his job is odd hours all the time and she didn't have a stable caregiver over there since the step mother moved out. If he tries to reverse this... everyone at the school is going to know the situation and wonder about dd's stability with him... it might not put him in a very good spot legally if they decide to pursue that. I mean, sleeping on other peoples couches 5 nights a week isn't any life for a 9 year old and I doubt that the state would feel it is either. And then when they find out that I was trying to give her stability and he wouldn't let me... Mmm.. I don't see that going well for him. I really don't.

It seemed when I told him I'd already done all the paperwork and the change was in progress, he gave up on resisting against it. I just hope he keeps that mindset for the coming few days..

Thank you all who are lurking and reading, and giving me positive vibes in all of this.

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#30 of 84 Old 10-22-2007, 11:11 PM
 
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: for you that all goes well this week.

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