Mothering Forum banner

1 - 6 of 6 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
12 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
A bit of backgroud: Dh and I have been together 10 years since my first 2 kids were 3 and 1. We now have 3 more kids together. My ex and dh hate each other. Ex has caused a lot of disruption out of spite, so things have only got worse over the years. After an episode where ex came in our home and started yelling, making all my kids cry, we told him not to get out of his car when picking up or dropping off the kids, as it was always a long drawn out scene.<br>
Now, we have a very long driveway, which does get ruts in the spring, but rather than drive slowly, ex decided to drive off the driveway, putting ruts in the lawn....making more work for dh to fix after the weather warms up. Dh called him and asked him to please stay on the driveway as he had wrecked the lawn. Ex's reply was that our driveway sucks (true, but not nearly as bad as the back roads he drives on to get here) and rather than apologize or agree to stay on the driveway, he said, "I'll drive wherever I damn well please". So now dh won't let him drive up the driveway at all, and instead takes the kids down to the road or meets them there when it's pick up or drop off time. Now, I can see his point, but the kids are upset that their dad isn't allowed on our driveway. Dh won't change his mind unless ex apologizes which will never happen. What do you all think? I don't want my kids to think that people can treat you like crap and you just roll over and take it. We tried to protect and shelter them from the conflict for years, but ex involves them in it anyway...isn't it important to defend ourselves? How do you do that without pointing out that the ex's behavior is unacceptable? Any ideas?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,690 Posts
My dh's ex loves confrontation, and treats him really, really badly. Honestly, much as I hate it, the only thing we've come to over the years is to just let it go and act like you don't even notice.<br><br>
The yelling in your home thing I don't think you can ignore, and it upsets the kids. The driving on your lawn thing - that's to bug you, right? And it worked, yes? Probably that's the part he finds satisfying...<br><br>
Try to take perverse satisfaction in not rising to the bait, and encourage your dh to do the same. Sometimes, now, I'll hear dh on the phone with his ex sounding all Zen and happy (all "yes, of course, I understand," and "thanks, I'll keep that in mind" and "thanks for calling") and when he gets off the phone I'll learn that she was saying absolutely awful things to him. And she was sooooo ticked that it didn't seem to bug him.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,119 Posts
I guess I'd work on dh taking the "high road" and if ex did something like drive on the lawn ( leave marks, ruin my property!) I'd call the police.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,639 Posts
I'm not sure where you are located, but is there any way you could put up some kind of physical barrier for now? Either pile snow really high, or use a fence (even a cheap, ugly one) or large rocks to keep him on the driveway?<br><br>
Either that, or since he seems intent on damaging your property (which your kids should not learn is ok), maybe you need to find a neutral meeting place. For example, you could both meet in the Wal-Mart parking lot. The kids could just hop out of one car and into the other - you wouldn't even have to talk if you didn't want to.<br><br>
My bf and his ex get along pretty well, but something they did for convenience would also work for confrontation avoidance purposes. Which ever one has dd drops her off at daycare and the other one picks her up at night when the custody switch occurs. You could do the same thing with school (if you don't hs), since your kids are older.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
152 Posts
Wow, this one is easy. DH and your ex have no business interacting at all, particularly since they have an animosity-filled relationship. Do all the exchanges yourself. Handle it yourself. Keep the issues between you and DH between you and DH and the issues between you and your ex between you and your ex. In my opinion, it is inappropriate for him to be dealing directly with your ex at all. The kids are obviously really affected by it so end it.<br><br>
On another note, we ended up having to stop any drop offs at our house becuase the transitions from one parent to the other were so ridiculous and obnoxious and it really upset everyone else in the family. So for about 2 years now, my DH and his ex have done all the exchanges in a neutral location and it is amazing what just those few minutes of transition time in the car between neutral location and our house do to help the kids transition. They get to be alone with their Dad, catch up, reset for the coming week, etc. He can gauge their mood, whether they are exhausted or sick, anything relevant. By the time they walk in the front door, it is like they never left. WONDERFUL! It has virtually eliminated any adjustment issues for the kids on our end. So neutral transitions can have a positive affect in some situations.<br><br>
And of course this has the added benefit of shielding the rest of us from the toxic behavior dynamic that goes on with the ex and the skids. So we are all happier.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks for all your thoughts. I guess doing the exchange at the end of the road is a better solution than at the house. Both our families are living in very rural locations and only about 15min. apart by car, so that is about as neutral a location as any, and it shelters the other kids from any confrontations, and the parents don't even interact this way. Right now the snowbanks would keep him on the driveway, but obviously that is not the only problem. Part of me thinks dh should "take the high road" and just ignore the ex's BS, but that didn't work for the first 10years, it just kept escalating.<br>
It not as simple as not having dh deal with the ex. It's no better when I deal with him, or his wife. In fact dh and the ex's wife do more of the exchanges because of work schedules. But the animosity is directed at both of us. They have called the CAS twice and harrass us through the kids all the time. Since this affects dh's kids as well as his skids and his property, he has a right to be involved, IMO.<br>
I just dread the day one of our kids gets married, or they have birthday parties, etc. for their babies. I can't see us ever being in the same space without a LOT of animosity and hostility. It's so sad really, but the ex has said he will make our life miserable and he wasn't kidding. Just more proof that he doesn't care about his own kids and how it might affect them.
 
1 - 6 of 6 Posts
Top