I refused to do the discussion with him. We had agreed to but then he pulled such monumental fuckery in the following weeks that I changed my mind.
Thank fuck I only have to see him a few times a year. If we had to do handovers in person on a regular basis and he was pulling this shit I'd be insisting on handovers at the local police station.
Mostly I ignore whatever he is saying. A few times I've told him I won't discuss anything and he'll need to put it in writing. I shut him down when he protests by repeating my request and closing the door or walking off with my girls if I'm picking up.
He tried to engage me in a fight in front of the girls several times. But I stayed calm, told him he was mistaken and bid my girls a happy farewell.
Once he forgot their bags upstairs so asked me to wait - I stood there watching him chat up a neighbour (leopard, spots) for about 5 seconds then caught myself and thought WTF am I doing? I interrupted him and said "sorry - can you grab the bags so I can go, we don't need to be standing here" he says "yeah, in a minute" and keeps talking so I walked off. He shouted after me and came out with the bags just as I finished strapping they girls in the car. Car doors are closed because it's a hot 40C outside and I have their favourite music blaring.
He says "can't I say goodbye to my children?". I say "I thought you had. In future say your goodbyes to them before you start chit chatting - I will not wait around for you. Now or ever."
All out of earshot of the girls. I didn't let him reach into the car because I told him I did not want him in my space. I unbuckled the girls and they said goodbyes.
This wasn't venom - this was boundaries. He has been a good rat since (apologies to rats).
I'm all for united fronts and all that but not with fuckwits like this. Confronting you in front of your kids like that is a low act. He will do this again - mark my words. You're just seeing the tip of the iceberg. I couldn't believe the fuckery the sad clown pulled. I had to remind myself I wasn't the one who cheated and lied for years. He did.
Do not break NC. Get it all out here. Write what you want to say/write to him here.
He will use whatever you send him against you - perhaps in front of a judge. Do not give him that ammunition. Keep a copy and a backup of whatever he sends to you. Insist on all comms in writing. DO NOT SPEAK TO HIM. Keep a VAR on you if you do have to see him and record everything he says.
That is the only way these guys learn - some never do but at least you'll save yourself ugly performances like this in front of your children.
You won't believe me when I tell you this but someday you won't even have the urge. The thought of giving him any ego kibbles will disgust you enough that it won't even be tempting. I didn't believe it when they said it to me but it's true.
Until then you need to white knuckle it. Contacting him will just add fuel to he fire. He thinks you fucked it up and nothing you say will dissuade him. He fully expects you to continue making him the good guy for your kids. Sometime soon you may want to stop telling them he loves them because you won't be sure of it. I know I'm not so I don't tell them that anymore. I tell them and show them that *I* love them a million times a day - it's not my job to tell lies for him. Not anymore.
((Klove)) nothing would make this easy. My big girl was 4.5 at Final S - a few months later she asked why daddy couldn't live with us and I told her because he broke promises husbands are not allowed to break and because we're all happier this way. She started crying and said "but I'M not happier this way". I told her I was sorry, that I loved her and I knew this was hard for her. I cuddled her until she fell asleep. My little girl sobbing loudly - me weeping silently. Then I sobbed all night long without a wink of sleep.
You're going to be OK. Your boys will be OK. It's hard to see them choking on this shit sandwich but the best you can do is keep them out of the drama and support them as much as you can.