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"Mom acts like a total bitch"

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Pass posted 6/27/2013 11:10 AM

A text exchange with our thirteen-year-old son yesterday:

13: I always look forward to the end of the day, so I can see Mom without a hundred students crowding us (he goes to the school she teaches at). At the end of each day, I'm always disappointed. She acts like a total bitch.

Me: Dude, that sucks. I'm sorry you're going through that. Are you alone right now? I could call you.

13: Nah I'm with Mom.

Me: That's a shame. We'll talk some time and I'll try to give you some preventative strategies.

13: I guess so.

Me: I'd talk to her for you, but I don't think that would be constructive - probably piss her off more. And that wouldn't help anyone!

13: Lol, don't do that!

Me: Just hold tight and keep your head low until we can talk. Above all, remember that both parents love the shit out of you.

13: Yeah I remember that but it's getting harder with Mom. Gawd she's miserable.

Me: That really sucks, dude. Give her some space and maybe she'll be over it soon.

13: Oh dude I've tried. She's just being so ignorant when she talks to us and she has no patience.

Me: Sorry, man. The good news is that you and your bro will be here in the city for a week!

13: I'm looking forward to our staycation.

Now 13 is just such a good boy. Nobody loves their mom more than he does. He is also very mature, as you can see from his language. I feel like I'm walking a fine line between being supportive of his sadness over this, and making sure he still has some respect for his egg donor.

My shrink says it is best to speak in general terms like "Sometimes people are in bad moods when they get home from work".

The truth is that she doesn't have me to bully anymore, and is replacing me with the next oldest male. Maybe it would improve if she spent more time with the boob she's dating?

I sent her an email innocently asking how things are going with the boys, and received the following reply: "Things are going well. Please don't fret about us".

I'm not sure there's a question here, I just needed to bitch.

Kajem posted 6/27/2013 11:39 AM


It's ok to come here and biatch and fret and to put those feelings here.

(((( Pass's boys)))))


Nature_Girl posted 6/27/2013 11:41 AM

The more you can stay away from being an intermediary between her and your son, the better. Don't fix their relationship. Listen to your son, give him coping strategies, but don't fix his relationship.

I'm struggling with this as well. My STBX is a volatile, abusive person. He also knows nothing about children and is NPD. My job isn't to make sure he & the kids get along anymore. As a former codep who will always struggle with enabling tendencies, it kills me to see him & the kids making horrible mistakes. My job is with the kids only, though. It's a land-mine filled battlefield to offer appropriate support & sympathy.

suckstobeme posted 6/27/2013 13:03 PM

I agree that coping stragies and ways to handle her moods are the best option. However, I'm not sure if all of the advice should come from you.

Please don't take that as me trying to claim you are incapable. Hardly. It's just me suggesting that an IC might be in order. It's a neutral third party that will help and will mean that you don't get sucked in too much in the middle of the relationship. You're still personally hurting a lot and guess what? When you see how much an ex can hurt your kids, the claws can come out real fast and it can be hard to control emotions.

Remember what a snaky, untrustworthy woman you are dealing with. Depending on whY you say to them, I wouldn't put it past her to try to claim that you are somehow turning the boys against her, even by agreeing that she can be bitchy sometimes.

The lawyer in me is always strategizing and IMO, you gotta be careful in these situations. Since there is no final decree and no court order on custody just yet, you need to be more careful with her than ever. Don't tip your hand and never let yourself get out of control. Help your boys as much as possible, but I agree that generalizations about her are best and I think IC is in order. Your kids need their own version of SI - a safe place to bitch.

Skan posted 6/27/2013 19:49 PM

And on the above note, keep coming back to vent, talk, discuss, and get support. That's what we're here for and better you should kvetch to us than blow up.

BTW, I must say that your son seems like a wise soul.

tryingagain74 posted 6/27/2013 21:44 PM

It's just me suggesting that an IC might be in order. It's a neutral third party that will help and will mean that you don't get sucked in too much in the middle of the relationship

ITA agree with this. This is one of the reasons why the kids and I are seeing an IC. I told her that I needed coping strategies because I sometimes feel way out of my comfort zone-- I turn into angry mama bear when I should be patient listener. I have only just started, but I look forward to getting help so that I don't become the intermediary or let my emotions cloud my judgment when my kids need me to be practical and rational.

I'm sorry for your boys, pass. It's sad to read how their mother is destroying her relationship with them.

(((pass and boys)))

ButterflyGirl posted 6/27/2013 21:48 PM

One of the biggest reasons I have my sons in counseling is so they can hear the truth from someone other than me.. My boys get upset and confused when I tell them one thing and STBX tells them another (like he lets them curse and I don't), so having a third party back me up is important to me..

I think your boys could benefit from some counseling to give them some tools to deal with this crap without anyone being able to claim that your personal feelings about the situation are getting in the way..

But I must admit Pass, I've heard you call your OM and plenty of other woman's asshole WH's a "boob," and I've yet to hear you call mine that yet..

Pass posted 6/27/2013 22:23 PM

Butterfly, your WH is one of the biggest boobs of all. I'm not sure if that means you win or lose the contest!

I guess I have to learn to accept what most of you are saying: I've been fired from the job of making sure my boys don't end up hating The Princess. It's just so hard to hear about her treating them shitty. I'm not so worried about them hating her as I am about them starting to believe they're arseholes. I spent years thinking I was.

I would love to get them in IC, but am not sure how to do that. I only see them on weekends, and I don't have access to what The Princess might through her benefits. She has made sure that SHE is seeing an IC, to help HER grieve the end of the marriage SHE ended.

Skan, you're right. 13 is a very wise soul. I always tell people he was born at the age of 30. Unfortunately, he is also very sensitive, so while he sees a lot more than the average kid might, it also seems to affect him more.

I take it back. My STBXW is at least as big a boob as Butterfly's WH.

ButterflyGirl posted 6/27/2013 23:08 PM

Yeah! Thanks pass! Of all the horrible names to call him, at least hearing him called a "boob," gives me a chuckle through my sadness

I totally hear you about not wanting the kids to think that they are arseholes or anything is their fault. It certainly comes with the territory of gas lighting and blame shifting. I would keep validating their feelings and supporting them as best you can. I agree he is a brilliant little man.. Since we aren't officially divorced yet, I'm taking them on the boob's insurance for the moment, and they should stay on it after the divorce, even though my personal IC will increase financially significantly... I hope you can figure something out.. Good luck. Big hugs to you and your sweet little boy..

Pass posted 6/27/2013 23:44 PM

Thanks, Butterfly.

After reading all these responses, I realized that it would do absolutely no good to confront The Princess about any of this. She still blames me for discovering her cheating, and says that it "terrifies" her that I did something so "dishonest" as reading her email. She once even told me that all the "drama" of my discovering her cheating could have been avoided if I hadn't "stalked" her.

God damn it, she's a stunned fucker!

Never apologized to me for a single thing during our entire marriage. I sure got good at apologizing though.

Did I mention that I'm in the anger phase. Dude, I am so in that phase, and it's my favourite one so far!

ButterflyGirl posted 6/28/2013 08:40 AM

Oh man, I was good at apologizing too. I have a perfect song for you for that. It's called "What I Meant To Say" by Daughtry. Here the link:

This was before I found SI, so I actually sent the boob (hee hee) this one..

Kajem posted 6/28/2013 09:02 AM


In your divorce do you have joint custody for medical issues with your kids?

If so you can push the princess to get the kids into therapy. With a counselor that you approve of.

If you can't do that... look up voicelessness in kid and read all you can about children and divorce. It helps.

Give your kids their voice by listening to them and validating what THEY see, feel etc. Do NOT validate the parroting of the X that will happen... THIS was the MAIN point the therapist had with me. My XH is a huge truth deflect the blame to where it doesn't belong. My kids could not see it, and when he would tell them what they saw was not exactly what they saw...they would eventually come to squash their own inner voice and take his word as the truth.

Problem with that: it sets the kid up to 1- learn that their voice is not to be trusted. And if that continues 2- they will take someone else's word over what they know to be true. It sets the kids up to believe every single lie that someone tells them... because they will not listen to that inner voice that is also attached to the inner lie detector.

The repercussions of them squashing that inner voice are too huge to name... that is just the beginning.

So listen to them, ask them "What do you think? What do you know? What did you see?" in a lot of things (not just with mom, but friends, family, sports events etc.) It helps them to learn to use their own thoughts and voice to figure out and make sense of things in their own lives.

I hope this helps... It has really helped my kids to know that while they love their dad, he can't be trusted with what he says.



Ashland13 posted 6/28/2013 19:34 PM

We have this happening, too.

DD is 10.5 and having a massive struggle. I don't believe she knows the full extent of Happy Pants (formerly Perv's) "activities" against her mother, but I work like a dog to help her without mentioning him...ever, ever, ever.

Yes, the general terms I try to use, but sometimes they feel hollow. I try to sort of validate that she has feelings, lots of "I'm sorry's" or "thank you for telling me and hugs.

She tells me sometimes that she doesn't trust him and only feels safe when she is with me and that is hard to hear, but also makes me feel nice, too.

It's a hard spot to be in. Kids bring out such a wide range or mix of emotions, sometimes I find it hard to sort out.

kernel posted 6/28/2013 20:08 PM

pass - is counseling available to your boys through their school? Perhaps you can get the school counselor to recommend to your WW that the boys see an IC. No doubt she will then take credit for it but if it works and helps the boys, it will be worth it.

Pass posted 6/28/2013 21:38 PM

That is a great suggestion, kernel, except for one thing: SHE IS THE FRIGGING SCHOOL COUNSELOR.

I would find that pretty funny if I weren't so pissed at her. Well okay, it's a little funny.

The boys arrived here for a week tonight. When he had a minute alone with me, 13 said that he had asked her the following when she was in a rare good mood: "You seem like you've been in a bad mood lately. Is there something I can do to help."

The kid is brilliant, and way more diplomatic than I am.

Her response was, "Really? That's weird! I've been in a great mood all week."

Then he said what I was thinking:, "God help us all if she's ever in a bad mood then."

Fuck I love this kid.

I just said stuff about how she may be overwhelmed with all the changes in recent months, and it sucks that he and 10 have to go through this.

Heavy Sigh posted 6/28/2013 21:53 PM

Tell him that it can be overwhelming to run a household alone, to remember to make all payments, car repairs, yard and be responsible for all errands and have no one to call to bring home items from the grocery store. And all of this may be surprisingly more difficult than she expected.

You aren't saying that he and his brother are difficult. (Don't use word 'single parent' or he will self-blame.Stick to household management as cause of her stress.)

You aren't saying that she misses you, which would send the wrong signal that the two of you might get back together and raise false hopes.

But you are sounding sympathetic, while at the same time pointing out to him that she may be having difficulty living with the consequences of her own bad choices, without saying it. And those consequences may not have been well thought-out - again, without saying it but giving him a chance to observe it himself.

That's not a bad thing for him to observe, and thinking about, see the truth of it, and perhaps at a younger age than most will see the value of thinking through one's choices.

[This message edited by Heavy Sigh at 9:57 PM, June 28th (Friday)]

kernel posted 6/29/2013 08:04 AM

That is a great suggestion, kernel, except for one thing: SHE IS THE FRIGGING SCHOOL COUNSELOR.

O M G. Now that sucks.

Pass posted 6/29/2013 21:52 PM

Heavy Sigh, tha's a great answer! Thanks!

kernel, I know, right?

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