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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Among the many things I have been struggling with over my impending separation and divorce is how it makes me feel my stbx values my role in our marriage and in parenting our children -- all my effort, work, even sacrifice over the past 7 years we have had children seems to be worthless in his eyes.

I know, why do I care?

It is just that, until he made his announcement, I felt supported as a sahm. I thought he agreed with our AP parenting style; with my efforts to limit media exposure; to provide healthy food; to give our girls a slooowww entry into the hectic world (i.e. giving my older dd an extra year of preschool); and other efforts on my part. I thought it mattered to him the quality of life we gave to our girls with him woh and me sah.

Now, I feel like -- all that gift to our children and to the quality of our *family* life isn't supported at all. I didn't do a good enough job that he wants to stay, that he wants me to continue to parent as we have (i.e. sah).

And ya know, I was just, finally feeling like I had hit my stride; that I had found my place of contentment with our lifestyle; that I was doing a pretty wonderful (if imperfect) job with our kids and our family. I knew my relationship with my stbx needed work and pulled him into counseling, more than once, but ...

Such a slap in the face.

Ok, get over it; I know. I basically think he is a fool to not appreciate how good I have made our lives and how well I have done with our children. I think he has this idealized idea of what marriage is supposed to be (all about him and no fighting ever). His loss, right?

I will make a new life. I know I can do it. And I hope my dds will continue to be blessed even though things will change so much.

Thanks for listening.

M
 

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It sounds like a lot of things are happening and I wanted to offer some support.

I'm guessing that he's not so much changed his mind as he's needing a way to justify leaving and make it okay for himself by making it seem like everyone will be fine with the change in the family.

Being a parent has always been very important to me and while separating and divorcing, I realized that my children would follow my lead and that has continued to give me the strength and courage over the years to continue to offer them everything I could and support them to the best of my ability.

I'm sorry this is difficult for you right now.
 

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I just couldn't read this without posting a hug.

Sounds like you are an incredibly dedicated, loving, wonderful mother. You've done the best you possibly could for your family, and you will continue to do an awesome job. Keep your head up high and proud.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Quote:

Originally Posted by MsChatsAlot View Post


I realized that my children would follow my lead and that has continued to give me the strength and courage over the years to continue to offer them everything I could and support them to the best of my ability.

Oh wow, years of experience. Can you share that a bit? How old were your kids when you separated? What has it been like? What have been the successes for them (and you) in all this. Oh, I love hearing there can be good news along the way. Please share as your time permits!

M
 

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That sounds so very hard. I am sorry you are going through this.

Hmm. Does it help at all to think of it in terms of: he is divorcing you, not his children? That he is leaving the marriage for reasons unrelated to your parenting?

The life you gave your kids is unfortunately going to change because of it, of course, but. It doesn't mean it will be bad. It sounds like you have done a great job laying a solid foundation for them, and that will serve you well in the future.

It sucks, though. It's hard not to sit there and think of all the reasons why he's being incredibly foolish. But--his priorities are his priorities, even if they're not the same as yours.

One of the hardest things for me in my breakup (my ex also dumped me) was to understand that there was NOTHING I could do or say to change his mind. I could have changed into his perfect woman overnight and he would still have dumped me. On some level it didn't have anything to do with me at all, if that makes sense. And because of that, there was nothing at all I could do to change or fix it.
 

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big hugs momma! I'm going through the same thing now and it hurts so much to have him going back on things we've agreed to over the years, throwing it in my face that he was only going along with my way. He has said he doesn't want me to force our youngest to wean or to send him off to daycare, but on the other hand, he wants me to fully support myself (though the state of CA doesn't agree with him).

We will make it through this and have amazing lives. There is something huge on the other side of this pain and one day we will see what a gift it was to have our husbands leave us...
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
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Originally Posted by rubelin View Post
... it hurts so much to have him going back on things we've agreed to over the years .... He has said he doesn't want me to force our youngest to wean or to send him off to daycare, but on the other hand, he wants me to fully support myself (though the state of CA doesn't agree with him).

We will make it through this and have amazing lives. There is something huge on the other side of this pain and one day we will see what a gift it was to have our husbands leave us...
Yes, as you say ... my stbx said, for example, "no, I don't want them in wall to wall full-day "camp" this summer" and yet, wants me to go back to work and to school.

I guess he wants the divorce more than he wants his kids to have this blessed lifestyle, so the kids are the ones who have to give up their life so he can have whatever it is he thinks he wants.

And yes, as angry as that makes me, I, too, know that you and I and thousands of other moms will help create good lives for our children, maybe even *with* the help of our Xs.

Thanks!

M
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
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Originally Posted by fuller2 View Post
... On some level it didn't have anything to do with me at all, if that makes sense. And because of that, there was nothing at all I could do to change or fix it.
Thanks for the support and btdt wisdom.

Yes, it is all about him -- and that is the problem -- he makes it all about everyone/thing else in his life (his boss, his workspace, his commute, me--we are the problem), but nonthing is worth his making much effort to improve things -- its us, not him, don'tcha know ...

I know I can't stop this -- it only takes one to divorce. At this point I would have to think long and hard about whether I could take him back because he is being very irresponsible financially (again).

So, I have done as you said and been very pro-active about taking care of my kids (lots of reading; working on a parenting plan with professionals; kids with a counselor; maintaining all their current acitivites and subtly preparing them for the news--we tell them this weekend) and me (pursuing my job prospects; have a good attorney; working cooperatively with stbx, dreaming about making some lifestyle changes *I* would prefer, etc).

I will be ok. I hope and pray my darling children will be ok. And I have to hope he will be ok, because his children are gonna need him.

Thanks again!

M
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by meandmine View Post
Oh wow, years of experience. Can you share that a bit? How old were your kids when you separated? What has it been like? What have been the successes for them (and you) in all this. Oh, I love hearing there can be good news along the way. Please share as your time permits!

M
Not sure exactly what you'd like, but I'll give you a quick peek into the amazing life of MsChats!!!

My ex left 6 years ago. My oldest was 3 and I was pregnant with #2. We stayed in our marital home for a year, where I gave birth then moved shortly after. We seriously downsized, moved out of the city to a neighboring town and saved a TON of money.

I have been a SAHM since my oldest was born. I homeschool my kids and I go to school as well. I've been taking 2 programs and just finished the first, so I'll be working this fall part-time and maybe doing a little school too. I love that I've chosen careers that are totally flexible, will pay well (which means I don't have to work full time) and are things I love. It has certainly helped me feel even more confident and excited about embarking on a new career as my kids get older, it's a lot more do-able, yet I'll still have a lot of time with them.

I have gone from scared and dependent girl to independent and strong woman. I LOVE my life!!! I am so happy my ex and I divorced, we are clearly not suited at all and both of us are so much happier as a result. I spent a lot of time working on myself. Personal growth, reading, re-evaluating my life, etc. and I have finally come to like myself and really enjoy my life. It was a tremendously freeing thing to do.

My ex and I had a rollercoaster relationship for awhile. The beginning was awful, then it was somewhat civil (with nasty remarks made now and then), then it was really horrific when he dated an insanely-jealous woman and he stopped seeing the kids for 5 months) and now we are almost friends, which is nice, for everyone. He has a new girlfriend and she is quite nice and we've gotten to the place where I can tell him I'm going on a date and he will take the kids for me. We share a meal sometimes when dropping or picking up kids and have taken them to a few events together.

While it was ugly, it was hardest on the kids. I have tried to be consistent with the kids and my ex throughout but, there were times when I was being yelled at or called names, when I wasn't as strong as I would have liked. In the year and a half with the jealous girlfriend, the kids really had a hard time, especially our oldest, but I have been really honest and straightforward with them, I teach them about being proactive and learning to deal with things we cannot change.

The kids are thriving and my ex and I are both happy too. I think what has made the biggest impact was me really working on myself and growing. Even my ex admits that I put up with a lot from him and it was because of my attitude that has helped make it easier for all of us. One person being able to shift, makes all the difference.

In the beginning and through the jealous girlfriend stage, my ex did NOT value me being at home at all. He pushed me a lot to get a job, etc. until I showed him the numbers and he realized he'd have to pay part of the daycare, which in the end, would cost him more money.

But now, he acknowledges that the kids are doing well and that is a result of me being with them and the changes I've made personally. Sometimes they need a little time to get through the transition before they recognize just how important AP is on the kids.

Anyway...if you have specific questions, feel free to ask.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by meandmine View Post
I will be ok. I hope and pray my darling children will be ok. And I have to hope he will be ok, because his children are gonna need him.

Thanks again!

M
Your children will follow your lead.

If you show them that when times get difficult, you make the best of it, they will learn that as well. If you are compassionate and understanding, if you continue to really be there for them (whatever time you have with them), they will feel heard and validated and will get through it.

There is usually a transition time, but then the kids usually settle into the new routine.

I often use the most challenging times to show my kids real life lessons and provide them tools with how to handle things for themselves. If you look at it as an opportunity for them to learn and grow, it will make it easier for all of you.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Quote:

Originally Posted by MsChatsAlot View Post
Not sure exactly what you'd like, but I'll give you a quick peek into the amazing life of MsChats!!!
Oh, thank you!

Like I said, it helps SO much to hear "success" stories. And birthing your second "on your own" so to speak; you are brave and strong!

So, what career(s) have you chosen that are flexible and you are passionate about? Love ideas on careers.

I would love to continue to sah as long as possible since my youngest just starts kindy this Fall. I have some ideas for part-time as long as it doesn't reduce my cs an ss (temporary).

In order for us to save substantial amounts on housing I would have to move at least 1-2 hours away and I think it is better my kids be near their dad, for the moment, so I will have to deal with the high cost of living in my area. Glad you were able to make the shift.

So thanks again for replying, so glad you are your children are happy and whole. I would love to hear about your career plans!

M
 

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Sorry you're bummed. When you have kids with an ex, you still have to have a relationship with them! I have to deal with mine all the time!

I know what you mean about the blame thing. Maybe as time goes by, and his problems are still there, the blame will go elsewhere. Hopefully. Remind yourself that this is why he is NOT the one for you, that always makes me feel even more confident about my split. !

I am still at home with my cd. It's been 6 months alone, and I'm know it won't last. My ex is on the boat, but his boss/father isn't. That's really where the child support comes from, which I live off of, and I'm nervous!

Are you able to AP for the long run?
 

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Sorry you're bummed. When you have kids with an ex, you still have to have a relationship with them! I have to deal with mine all the time!

I know what you mean about the blame thing. Maybe as time goes by, and his problems are still there, the blame will go elsewhere. Hopefully. Remind yourself that this is why he is NOT the one for you, that always makes me feel even more confident about my split. !

I am still at home with my cd. It's been 6 months alone, and I'm know it won't last. My ex is on the boat, but his boss/father isn't. That's really where the child support comes from, which I live off of, and I'm nervous!

Are you able to AP for the long run?
<--- had to post this for my 4 year old.
 
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