If you have closed the door forever for reconciliation here is a possible response:
I realize, profoundly, how broken marriages and relationships affect children adversely. It breaks my heart to see them cry and see their world torn apart.
Your advice is noted, and I will try to spend more one-on-one time with our children, rather than try to entertain them with trips or activities or have my relatives visit to give them a larger sense of family, which I had hoped would make them feel more secure.
You say I am too self-involved. While I will do a self-check on this as you advise, I would suggest you do the same.
You are miserable, I think, and your unhappiness is less out of the concern for the children, than because your boyfriend situation didn't work out as you had hoped, so now you're stuck living with your parents again, out in the world on your own having to recreate your life.
If the boyfriend crush had worked out as you had hoped, you would be happily telling the children how lots of kids have divorced parents, and you would not be giving a thought to moving back in with me. Not one, not even for their sakes.
Truthfully, I think you want to move back in for your sake financially, and while some of your motivation is to make the children's lives go more smoothly each day, your motivation to return is not for wishing to be with me apart from using me for financial and time convenience for you, and for escaping the need to live with your parents. You want me to just fall into line with whatever you need at the time, as if my feelings of personal humiliation, betrayal and loss of trust can be recovered in a snap of a finger at your convenience and time schedule.
Daughter is upset, saying you cry and want me to help you and let you move back in. You are manipulating her by putting her in the middle, placing an unfair burden on her, to believe that it is her responsibility to help you ,and that she is personally failing at this responsibility because I'm not emotionally capable of living with an ex-wife who doesn't want to truly be with me beyond convenience, and so in the future, would likely walk out again putting kids through a second split-up when her finances are better or the next time she met someone she believed would be a "trade up" for her life.
I will work on being closer to the children rather than keeping them busy to distract them. Distraction is how I've overcome my pain of the past two years and had thought it might work for them.
In the meantime, please stop making our children believe that if they try hard enough, they can get their parents back together. Our failures are not theirs to repair. Live with your parents, get counseling at school if they offer it to learn about who you are and what has happened the past two years and why, and you may come to realize why I'm not willing to risk being hurt again by an ex-wife who has little interest in me personally other than for convenience and as the nearest life raft.
Not seeing you or talking to you is how I've dealt best during your affair and the pain it gave me, and your time living with another man. It's how I've had to heal myself. The distance is not done out of spite. It's how I've kept my sanity and dignity, and moved on after you had moved on in your life with another man.
[This message edited by Heavy Sigh at 8:18 AM, July 18th (Thursday)]