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Divorce/Separation Post Reply     Print Topic    
User Topic: Conversation with 13
Nature_Girl
♀ Member
Member # 32554
Default  Posted: 3:15 PM, February 25th (Tuesday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

http://thewellcounselingcenter.com/2011/10/18/avoiding-triangulation-in-relationships/


Me = BS (Stay-at-home-mom)
Him = EX-d out (abusive troglodyte NPD SA)
3 tween-aged kids
Together 20 years
D-Day: Memorial Weekend 2011
2013 - I DIVORCED HIM, I'M FREE!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RBOJpIwF47Y

Posts: 9254 | Registered: Jun 2011 | From: USA
nekorb
♀ Member
Member # 40306
Default  Posted: 3:37 PM, February 25th (Tuesday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I'm not sure if you would have as much freedom to hang with your band on weekends with her, and she would be a VERY bitter woman at having lost her big house and her single-woman weekends - and can you imagine her moods if SHE had to start living among "poor people"?

Please don't teach them to modify their behavior to somehow control/contain/modify HERS.

Co-dependency is SO hard to unlearn.

Lots of good advice from the others. Your email to him was definitely one that should have been written and then burned vs sent. Then you send the 5 sentences that would have been appropriate.

Dear 13,

1. I'm so sorry for the situation you are in and what you are experiencing is upsetting you.
2. If I could change it for you, I would.
3. If you have a problem with your mother, please discuss it with your mother directly.
4. Please talk to the school counselor about what's happening at home.
5. I love you and I miss you.

Love, pass

[This message edited by nekorb at 5:14 PM, February 25th (Tuesday)]


Me: BS 44
Him: WH 47 aka CAT- colossal asshat
Married 22 years
D-day: July 17, 2013, with TT to follow
Heading for Divorce
3 kids: 15,17,19

Psalms 27:14
Wait for The Lord; be strong and take heart, wait for The Lord.


Posts: 1684 | Registered: Aug 2013
Newlease
♀ Member
Member # 7767
Default  Posted: 4:20 PM, February 25th (Tuesday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Pass - just wanted to add that I know you are struggling and doing the best that you can. Sorry if the 2x4 hurt - just trying to get you to see it from the other side of the equation.

I hope you are seeing someone for IC. And if you are, please discuss this subject with the counselor.

Sending more strength and peace.

NL


Even if you can't control the world around you, you are still the master of your own soul.

Posts: 7644 | Registered: Aug 2005
hemademesingle
♀ Member
Member # 21281
Default  Posted: 4:24 PM, February 25th (Tuesday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I do agree with other posters children should never be brought into adult situations, your son is mad at his mom, happens all the time with all children, I would contact the boys family doctor and see what kind of counselling can be found for them, when my daughter was 12 she was very depressed her family doctor referred her to a counselor, it was covered by OHIP, no out of pocket expenses to me at all, I just had to get her to the appointments

I do wonder what happened in your life to make you think that you deserved to be treated poorly by your x,

Your in Canada, with such a low income do you not qualify for legal aid? What about a children's advocate lawyer?

My understanding is that a child of the age of 12 can choose which parent that they want to live with, no court battle required.

Please look into counselling for your boys,


Posts: 372 | Registered: Oct 2008 | From: Canada
careerlady
♀ Member
Member # 16958
Default  Posted: 4:29 PM, February 25th (Tuesday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Gosh, I just wanted to say I agree with the others that the email was way too much. I agree with phantom limb that if he wasn't doing it before you've certainly given DS13 enough fodder to grow his hatred for his mother in order to bond with you. You even said "poor DS10" was stuck with her for longer without him even saying it was a problem for him. You went way over the top and into parental alienation. Perhaps the worst part is that you have no plan to change custody yet you are encouraging him to feel worse about it and to become codependent. I would argue that your son's text didn't require a letter at all. Could have gone something like:
DS: fuck it. Can I live with you?
Pass: why do you ask that? What's going on?

Maybe he just wanted to vent and you to listen. Maybe at the end you could reinforce that you and his mother love him and have put the best place in plan for caring for him. Please read the guideline undefinabl3 posted. This is critical or you are going to scar your kids for life. There really isn't a difference between what you said and her telling the kids if they lived with you you might try to kill yourself again. She is probably NPD and is sick and needs help just as much as you did, and at the end of the day you did make a choice, too, that hurt them. Neither of you should be encouraging the negative feeling your sons may have about the other parent (hate, fear, etc). My mom over shared as well, especially when divorcing my dad and made me feel responsible for her emotions and I think she's why I'm codependent (though I can't tell her because she'll cry, etc etc). You seem like a good person and I know you want to be a good father and not hurt your sons. So PLEASE listen to us when we tell you that commiserating with your sons about the Princess DOES NOT HELP THEM. You are HURTING DS13 and possibly his brother. Please stop. Talk to your counselor about this. Maybe even figure out if there are certain issues that can be brought up to the Princess and addressed. But stop this type of communication right away.

(((Pass)))


Me (BS, 35); The Snake (WS, 36) 13yrs together; 1 baby boy (DOB 7/12)
Serial cheater-Multiple OWs, Multiple D-Days
D by default 5/3/14!
Hasn't moved out yet
Summary: http://youtu.be/iaysTVcounI

Posts: 930 | Registered: Nov 2007 | From: Northern California
kg201
♂ Member
Member # 40173
Default  Posted: 4:33 PM, February 25th (Tuesday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Pass, some thoughts after reading this thread. The first question that sticks in my mind about the texts that you receive from you 13 is what is he looking for with those texts?

My sense is that when he has a hard time with his mom he doesn't have the skills to deal with it, and the default is to text you. Commiserating and empathy are important, but they don't give him any skills to deal with the situation in future events. One of the reasons your original email isn't healthy to a kiddo in that age group is that all it said was, "yup. She sucks, but there is nothing we can do about it." Since you struggled with the same behaviors this is an example of the blind leading the blind, I think.

I would advise that you try a paradigm shift in helping your son. The situation is not going to change so the question is what skills can you help him develop to deal with the interactions he has with his mom in a way that will be helpful to him. I would start by trying to ask questions. Don't just assume what his true feelings about a situation are. Try to ask questions to get the facts about the event, and questions that will help you draw out his feelings about them. "I don't want to live with mom" is not a feeling. It's an escape from dealing with the feelings he is experiencing.

Brainstorming solutions to his negative interactions with his mom could also be helpful. "When your mom did X, what could you have done instead?" "Next time your mom does X, what could you do that let's her know how you feel about it in a respectful and productive way?" Boys especially have a hard time identifying what is going on in interactions and don't have the words to use in dealing with them. Help him find those words. Help him identify patterns, and ways to break out of those patterns. Swears are nothing more than words used when we are frustrated, but don't know how to respond in a more productive way.

Anyway...my two cents.


Me: BH, 39
Her: WW, 40
Together 18 years, married 15+
LTA 3.5 years, ongoing
Dday: 7/28/13
Divorcing, 3 children
---------------------------------
"There can be no friendship without confidence, and no confidence without integrity." -S

Posts: 581 | Registered: Aug 2013
dmari
♀ Member
Member # 37215
Default  Posted: 4:40 PM, February 25th (Tuesday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Dear pass,

I am feeling very sad for you and your boys. Really really sad. I know in your heart you feel you made the right decision with your response to your son. There is no doubt about it that your intentions in your response was genuine. I hope you know we all know this. But I hope you will reflect on the feedback you are receiving from SI. The feeling that I get from your response is that YOU are still processing and grieving the many events that you have gone through and this may be blocking you from seeing the perspective that we are seeing in your response to your son.

After my suicide attempt, it took me a while to even admit that I had depression, and it took WAY longer to admit that while she didn't hook up the dryer vent or turn the ignition key - and she couldn't have foreseen that as a result - she was a huge factor. She definitely made it worse, and hurried me along to deciding to kill myself.

This comment concerns me. My stbx was depressed and had a suicide attempt along with passive suicidal behaviors and threatened to shoot himself in the head and have my kids find him. His decision to kill himself is HIS decision. He lacked healthy coping skills to deal with situations/life. I am not doubting or minimizing for one second the emotional abuse and treatment you received from your WS but please don't blame someone for your decision to end your life.

Like your boys, my DD18 knows only about his threat but both children don't know of his attempts and his suicidal behavior. Not that I am holding back the truth from them but I'm going by each of their therapist recommendation. I would highly recommend the boys be in therapy. They need someone who can be objective and help them build coping skills. They desperately need that. They were dealt with a shit sandwich and really really need support in handling it with healthy coping skills.

(((((pass and boys)))))


Me (BS): 42 Children: DD 18, DS 15
Mediation date: 7/10/14 and 7/22/14
Final final court date: Oct 2014

Posts: 2114 | Registered: Oct 2012
careerlady
♀ Member
Member # 16958
Default  Posted: 5:22 PM, February 25th (Tuesday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Was napping with DS and woke up to write that I also think you should apologize to DS 13 for talking so harshly about his mother and that you are still dealing with some hurt feings and don't always say the right things but you love him and you know his mother loves him and that you are all going through a tough transition but everything is going to work out fine, especially if continues to communicate with you AND the Princess

And the kids need therapy. You should tell the Princess the boys need it to help them deal with the transition. I'm not sure whether you should mention their complaints if she resists.

I agree with what kg201 said about the importance of conversation versus email and teaching coping skills.


Me (BS, 35); The Snake (WS, 36) 13yrs together; 1 baby boy (DOB 7/12)
Serial cheater-Multiple OWs, Multiple D-Days
D by default 5/3/14!
Hasn't moved out yet
Summary: http://youtu.be/iaysTVcounI

Posts: 930 | Registered: Nov 2007 | From: Northern California
BAB61
♀ Member
Member # 41181
Default  Posted: 9:13 PM, February 25th (Tuesday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

(((pass))) I'm just going to say that counseling will help your kids, and the advice to talk to the Princess about a 3rd party is a good way to go. Just mention that you are concerned that they are having some difficulty, and is there a counselor in another school that could talk to them.


Boss A** B*tch
BS/52 Me, STBXpos/56, dd's 16&14
1st D-day 10/19/2013 EA/PA
2nd D-day 12/7/2013 LTA/Rendezvous
S 12/7/2013 No-fault state, 6 mo S, counting down the days.

Posts: 1271 | Registered: Oct 2013 | From: DE
doctor49
♂ Member
Member # 15847
Default  Posted: 10:41 PM, February 25th (Tuesday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Pass (and I'm sorry if I've missed it) what are you doing to help you through this? I ask because it seems to me that your kids need you to be right for them (as well as you).

Posts: 243 | Registered: Aug 2007
Pass
♂ Member
Member # 38122
Default  Posted: 11:02 PM, February 25th (Tuesday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Pass (and I'm sorry if I've missed it) what are you doing to help you through this? I ask because it seems to me that your kids need you to be right for them (as well as you).

Ever since my suicide attempt in January of 2012, I've been seeing a shrink. He has helped me a lot with my esteem issues, and I no longer consider suicide an option. Thanks for asking.


Loyal spouse: Me; Disloyal spouse: The Princess
Two sons: Now 11 and 14
DDay: Nov 15, 2012
Separated: Mar 2, 2013 after married 17 years, now divorcing!

The best thing about hitting rock bottom is that everything after that looks fucking fabulous


Posts: 1666 | Registered: Jan 2013 | From: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
gonnabe2016
♀ Member
Member # 34823
Default  Posted: 11:09 PM, February 25th (Tuesday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Pass, it is so obvious that you love your kids deeply and want to *do right* by them. You are making some mis-steps, though, in regards to their relationship with their mom. You are placing them in an *us* against *her* scenario -- and that just needs to stop.

She may not be in the running for any Mother of the Year award, but she *is* still their mother and every exchange that I've read between you and your DS includes a LOT of *your mom doesn't deserve respect and is worthy of derision* language.

You say that DS13 has been complaining "more and more about his mom." I get the feeling that your way of *listening* to him is encouraging (and almost egging) his complaints on. Your DS complains about her....and you jump on the bandwagon. You aren't really *listening* to him...you are *yea, buddying* him. If I received the text that you did, my initial response would have been "What happened? And stop using the *F* word!"

It's my understanding that a custody flip where the kids live with you isn't even an option right now, right? So stop giving the kid the impression that if he were *awarded* to you tomorrow...that life would be awesome -- because you'd be screwed, wouldn't you? Having the kids live with you for the majority of the time isn't even a feasible option.

Your kids need to be given coping skills for dealing with the situation as it is right now. And as AJ pointed out....you are getting your information from the perspective of your kid(s). Kids aren't stupid and they are not *above* manipulating situations -- especially in situations where the parents are engaged in parallel parenting rather than co-parenting. Sometimes their perspective comes from the normal-developmental-stage of self-absorption/self-centeredness that kids have and sometimes the kid just knows how to *play* one parent off of the other. Your DS13 KNOWS that you will jump to *validate* him immediately and pile on the *denigrate mom* bandwagon.

Something to work on with your DS....."I'm sorry that <abc> happened to you and it made your feel <xyz>. Let's come up with some ways for you to handle this in the future....." NOT "O.M.G! She did that to ME too!!!!"


"Oh, what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive." - Sir Walter Scott

In my effort to be *concise*, I often come off as blunt and harsh. Sorry, don't mean to be offensive.


Posts: 7694 | Registered: Feb 2012 | From: Midwest
Pass
♂ Member
Member # 38122
Default  Posted: 11:13 PM, February 25th (Tuesday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Okay, now seriously, y'all, this is the kind of shit I left my kids living in. They were with The Princess at her parents' place for supper. I just received this text from 13:

WHAT THE FUCK! She just poked 10 with a fork to get out of her spot. He started crying, and Mom and Grandma started laughing!

Now I'm sure she didn't draw blood, or even mean to hurt him. It was probably just a playful poke that was accidentally to hard, but the woman is totally incapable of an apology. When confronted with the fact that she has done something wrong, her response is ALWAYS to belittle or ridicule them, so that they will think she didn't do something so bad.

She is a foul fucking person, and so are her parents.

So you'll pardon me if I don't give any credence to "your kids are half her". Horseshit. My kids were born with a clean slate and already have more empathy than she is capable of.


Loyal spouse: Me; Disloyal spouse: The Princess
Two sons: Now 11 and 14
DDay: Nov 15, 2012
Separated: Mar 2, 2013 after married 17 years, now divorcing!

The best thing about hitting rock bottom is that everything after that looks fucking fabulous


Posts: 1666 | Registered: Jan 2013 | From: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
careerlady
♀ Member
Member # 16958
Default  Posted: 11:16 PM, February 25th (Tuesday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

. If I received the text that you did, my initial response would have been "What happened? And stop using the *F* word!"

Oh yes that was my other point. Not only are you tolerating his cursing, but you are cursing when you talk to him ("it fucking killed me...", so you are validating that behavior. Were you kidding when you said you don't know where he gets it from?

Sorry for all the 2x4s. You know we wouldn't do it if we didn't love and care about you. If I wasn't you or someone else I cared for if just shake my head and move onto the next thread without comment ((hugs))


Me (BS, 35); The Snake (WS, 36) 13yrs together; 1 baby boy (DOB 7/12)
Serial cheater-Multiple OWs, Multiple D-Days
D by default 5/3/14!
Hasn't moved out yet
Summary: http://youtu.be/iaysTVcounI

Posts: 930 | Registered: Nov 2007 | From: Northern California
PhantomLimb
♀ Member
Member # 39668
Default  Posted: 11:22 PM, February 25th (Tuesday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Pass, I don't think it's a good sign that your son feels free to give you a play-by-play of every single one of your Ex's infractions. As others have said, this suggests to me that you may have inadvertently created a culture with him where, to quote gonnabe,
*your mom doesn't deserve respect and is worthy of derision*
. That is otherwise known as "parental alienation." That can otherwise be known as, say goodbye to your custody rights.

I'm not saying that what he just texted you isn't nothing (sure, it sounds callous), but IMHO it was unnecessary to bring you into it.


BS / D

Posts: 859 | Registered: Jun 2013
Pass
♂ Member
Member # 38122
Default  Posted: 11:24 PM, February 25th (Tuesday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Something to work on with your DS....."I'm sorry that <abc> happened to you and it made your feel <xyz>. Let's come up with some ways for you to handle this in the future....."

That feels like a platitude. My kid has a very strong bullshit detector, and would stop talking to me if he felt I were just saying the equivalent of "There there", and patting him on the head.

I am NOT encouraging him to trash-talk his mom. I am letting him know that he is not a part of the problem. He is not going to get the impression from me that this is okay behaviour from her.

It's my understanding that a custody flip where the kids live with you isn't even an option right now, right? So stop giving the kid the impression that if he were *awarded* to you tomorrow...that life would be awesome because you'd be screwed, wouldn't you? Having the kids live with you for the majority of the time isn't even a feasible option

My kids are not awards. I am not telling him any such thing. He is dealing with some emotional abuse from his mom, and he would not get that from me. Would I have financial problems if the kids were with me full-time? Yes. That's why there is such thing as child support.


Loyal spouse: Me; Disloyal spouse: The Princess
Two sons: Now 11 and 14
DDay: Nov 15, 2012
Separated: Mar 2, 2013 after married 17 years, now divorcing!

The best thing about hitting rock bottom is that everything after that looks fucking fabulous


Posts: 1666 | Registered: Jan 2013 | From: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Pass
♂ Member
Member # 38122
Default  Posted: 11:40 PM, February 25th (Tuesday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Oh yes that was my other point. Not only are you tolerating his cursing, but you are cursing when you talk to him ("it fucking killed me...", so you are validating that behavior. Were you kidding when you said you don't know where he gets it from?

Yes, I let him swear around me. He wasn't allowed to do that until he was 13, when he is alert and conscientious enough to know when not to do it. If I find out about him doing it when it is inappropriate, he's back to saying Darn. Fuck is a wonderful, expressive word when used properly and in it's place.

And to reiterate, yes, I understand that he is not my buddy. It is very clear in our relationship who the parent is. I may have a slightly different view of what are important issues - and The Princess and I agree on most of those things. I am not a Disney Dad.

And furthermore, in reference to your earlier statement:

She is probably NPD and is sick and needs help just as much as you did, and at the end of the day you did make a choice, too, that hurt them.

Since when has NPD been treated on this site as someone who is sick? It is usually treated as a synonym for "arsehole".

And how dare you colour my depression and suicide attempt with the same crayon. I was pushed to the point of believing my life was worthless, and that everyone would be better off without me. That is not totally her fault - I already had depression when I met her - but she kept stomping my self esteem further into the dirt.


Loyal spouse: Me; Disloyal spouse: The Princess
Two sons: Now 11 and 14
DDay: Nov 15, 2012
Separated: Mar 2, 2013 after married 17 years, now divorcing!

The best thing about hitting rock bottom is that everything after that looks fucking fabulous


Posts: 1666 | Registered: Jan 2013 | From: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Pass
♂ Member
Member # 38122
Default  Posted: 11:44 PM, February 25th (Tuesday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I think I need to step away from here for a few days. I love y'all, but am feeling picked on and pissed off. I need to cool my head.


Loyal spouse: Me; Disloyal spouse: The Princess
Two sons: Now 11 and 14
DDay: Nov 15, 2012
Separated: Mar 2, 2013 after married 17 years, now divorcing!

The best thing about hitting rock bottom is that everything after that looks fucking fabulous


Posts: 1666 | Registered: Jan 2013 | From: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
ButterflyGirl
♀ Member
Member # 38377
Default  Posted: 11:45 PM, February 25th (Tuesday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Please take to heart what others have told you about DS10. Personally, I would tempted to erase and PERMANENTLY delete any of any of this info, but you also don't want to put your kids in a position of being forced for lie for you as that can't be extremely damaging by itself, and no one parent should force their children to keep a secret from another parent... Believe me, STBX did the same thing. But those emails and texts are lethal to your case.

But, an another note:

It might even have to involve a child custody battle in court - which would make both of us poor, and honestly, I would run out of money for lawyers first. Also, she would have the ammunition of my mental health issues and suicide attempt to use against me.

I have a lot of these same issues, but pass, none of these are terminable, and all of your medical issues CAN BE TREATED, but only if you WANT help. For goodness same, I've seen full blown drug addicts get custody back provided they can start proving they are recovering, they have a stable place for the kids, and can prove they are no longer a danger to themselves or others. I hate to accuse somebody of giving up because the task seems too hard, but I think you can this. Get yourself counseling, meds; supportive friends, legal aid, etc. I've been advised to not depend on one penny of support from STBX, which has unfortunaltey happened at the moment, but dammit, I don't need that piece of shit! He will not hold me back! I will do ANYTHING to provide for my kids. They are my number one priority. Please reevaluate your situation and see if you can fix it without the Princesses help. I know you can do it....

And if I didn't say it yet, HUGS!!


xBW~ 35
Two of the most darling sons ~ 10 and 6

Posts: 1991 | Registered: Feb 2013 | From: Florida, USA
FirstLoveGone
♀ Member
Member # 25957
Default  Posted: 11:46 PM, February 25th (Tuesday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

The vast majority of us in this forum have to deal with the shittiest of people to co-parent with. You are not unique in this situation.

Yes, we get your that your kid is smart. But the vast majority of kids have pretty strong bullshit detectors. No one is suggesting you heap meaningless platitudes on 13. You can find a way to address his concerns using languauge he can relate to.

Stop using your kid's intelligence or saviness to excuse your behavior. He is still a kid and a 13 year old one at that. He needs firm guidance and a role model. Yes, you can be there when he vents. But for goodness sake, don't join him in venting.

One more thing - if he's so smart and savvy don't you think he could use those skills on you and play you like a fiddle?


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