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I'm not handling this well

595 Views 5 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  BabySlinger
I'm so stressed out and so angry and so FRUSTRATED. I just don't know what the hell is going on my with H. We are not divorced. He left us last month (me and my 2 kiddos, plus a baby on the way for Dec.) He just told me he didn't love me, didn't want to be with me, and he was so unhappy. Oh yeah, and he didn't want the baby either. Fine. I have really been ok with it. I mean, I got tired of cleaning up after him, having him treat me like crapola, and acting like an 18 year old with no responsibility. So whats the problem?

He is confusing me
He still calls every day and wants to shoot the breeze and chit chat. Then he asks to talk to the kids. Which is fine, I WANT him to call the kids. I just don't want him to ask me how *I* am. He doesn't deserve to know IMO. And he comes to see the kids 3-4 times a week, soemtimes more. But when he comes, he wants to STAY. Hang out here like he always has. But this is MY house now, yanno? I don't really want him here. I don't think he has the right to hang out here, watch my tv, and eat my food. If you were lookin in from the outside, its like he still lives here, just doesn't sleep here. If he doesn't want to be with me, he shouldn't want to be here! He should just pick up the kids and go, right?

And then tomorrow, I've told him the last 2 weeks that my mom is giving me a 30th bday party. I've been telling him he has to have the kids home by 4. Well he calls today and says, "its ok if i come get them at 3, right?" I of course remind him of my party, and then he says he's all disappointed he can't have them... when its MY freaking birthday party, AND I've been telling him all week.

I just feel liek I'm getting SO TOTALLY walked all over. He has everything he wants. He sees the kids when he wants, lives where he wants, gos out with the guys when he wants, and he comes here when he wants. And what do I get? A pregnancy alone, kids who don't understand and blame me for him leaving, chaotic financial stress, and a heartache that just doesn't understand any of this.

I just feel like the lots of the stress I am feeling shouldn't even be happening
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Maybe it's time to set up some ground rules:

He needs to call before he comes over, or set up a schedule for when he visits. Make "plans" even if it's to go to the store or park, whatever, and when he overstays, tell him that you are leaving so it's time for him to go.... try to get something written down so he can refer to that in case he "forgets" again.

Sounds like he wants the best of both worlds; a family when it's convenient, and his freedom as he wants it.

Have you talked to an attorney yet?

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I don't think it's a good idea for you to let him hang around your house, being a single parent myself, I realize how expensive groceries alone can be, let alone having someone there all the time eating your food, using more electricity, etc. Aside from the money aspect, him being around that much isn't good for you emotionally either. I think you should set some boundaries and the sooner the better. Don't let him walk all over you like this, you deserve so much better.
I second those emotions, especially mocha09's suggestion re: ground rules. I worked hard to set boundaries with my stbx immediately after our separation: set times for pick-up and drop-off of DD; insisted that he wait for an invitation, not just drop by my house; made a point of inviting him in (or not), inviting him to eat (or not), and ending visits clearly and intentionally. I often do this indirectly, i.e. telling DD that "Daddy has to go now."
I also keep phone calls with him brief (under 5 min.) and to the point.
It's hardest at the beginning.
I agree with everyone.
Set groundrules. It's your house, your phone etc. you don't have to let him be there and you don't have to talk to him. If he calls, just say, "oh, I'll get the kids", etc.

It is your house, your space. You need to feel comfortable so whatever you set, goes. That's it. Leaving a marriage & family has consequences....maybe it's time he realizes that too.

Right now you need to put yourself first, your kids second.
Another strong recommendation: Talk to a lawyer. Ask around for local referrals, especially through a moms' or women's network in your area. Don't look too far afield; you want somebody with experience, reputation and connections in the court where you case will/would be handled.

Even if you aren't sure that you want a divorce, talking to a lawyer can be very empowering. A good lawyer will help you set up what you need to protect yourself and kids - s/he will help you understand your situation vis-a-vis child custody, support, shared property and assets, use of the home/apartment/car(s), and visitation schedule. You can choose a "soft" (mediation-oriented) route or a "hard" (adversarial) one. (I started from a hard/adversarial position because it's easier to soften the terms than to toughen them up later.)

Not to scare you, but you are really vulnerable right now. You're dependent on your husband's goodwill and sense of responsibility toward you: do you trust him? Put in your claim for custody of the kids and for use of your car and home, especially if they are in his name. Move money into your own name, if you haven't already. If you have your own income, put it in a separate account. Stash cash.

You can make tough, self-protective moves without cutting off contact with your husband entirely. And you can take a lot of steps toward divorce - up to and including "legal separation" - without actually doing it (most states have a waiting period and lots of intermediate stages).

Best wishes in a very difficult time.
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