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I've only been divorced for a couple of months now, and it just keeps getting stranger!<P>I've been sort of planning a vacation for a month or so. We'd always talked about going to Hawaii, but we never went as a family because money was too tight, and X had a terrible fear of flying, especially over water. Since we separated last year, money has been very tight for her, but I've managed to do well enough to afford a few things, including that vacation I always wanted.<P>When I informed X of my plans, she seemed very, very resentful. She said "oh, you're just going there because thats where we always wanted to go." I said "yeah, but you never would've gotten on a plane, so what's the point?" She obviously resents the fact that I can afford to do this, but tonight it got strange.<P>She said that our 12 year old D was angry because I was going! She said that D said "it isn't fair, he should take me..." and "why can't we just all go together?" She asked me where she could find out about Hawaiian vacations, how much it would cost, etc., so she could "send D to Hawaii." <P>Now, I don't know if she's planning to try and send D along with me, or if she's trying to plan her own trip. I know for a fact that she can't afford either. Is she trying to lay a guilt trip on me so I'll take D, or is she hoping to curttail any kind of "single guy" activities I might have by sending D along with me?<P>I wouldn't have a problem taking D on a vacation to Disneyland or Seaworld (like we've done in the past), but I kind of envisioned this as "my" vacation...just me, a beach, and a Mai Tai or two. I could probably afford to take D, but that's not the point...isn't it?<P>I guess I resent the fact that I watched D on the weekends that X went to Vegas to be with OM, yet I can't even leave town without being seen as an insensitive, selfish father!<P>Any ideas?

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Your ex is playing mind games with you. She is trying to lay a guilt trip on you. Ignore her. There is no need to discuss your vacation plans with her. You are divorced and have no obligations to her. Just go and enjoy your vacation.

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Sounds like she wants to be there for the good times. I'm sure if you said you would take D that she would insist on going too. <P>Of course she doesn't want you to have any fun. Her life has become less than wonderful since divorce, she is feeling less than happy and would hate for you to do something nice for you and perhaps have some fun in the process.<P>Yes, sending D as her personal spy would be very convienent now wouldn't it. I'm sure your D would love to go but remember this is for you. You deserve it CJack. You exW put you through emotional hedouble hockey pucks and is still trying to manipulate you. <P>I say go and have a grand time. Tell D that you need this time for you and you will promise to plan a vacation for the <B>two</B> of you another time. Of course she'll pout and stamp her feet, she's twelve, but she will come around. We all did at that age.<P>This might be the perfect opportunity to practice a bit of tough love too. Let exW see what she is missing out on. I would think that if you cave in and not go out of guilt she will know she still has you and will continue to manipulate you through D. <P>If only she could see what a terrible thing she is doing to her D by all this. As your D grows and matures she will begin to lose respect for her mom and that is a very sad thing indeed.<P>Take Care CJack.....I'm still listening [Linked Image from marriagebuilders.com]

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P.S.<P>Going on a vacation does not make you and insensitive, selfish father!!!!<P>Having an affair and divorcing the only father your D has known is insensitive and selfish. Using your D to manipulate you is insensitive and selfish.<P>Don't you dare feel any guilt for doing this CJack.<P>Okay, I'm down off my soapbox now. <P>Goodnight

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<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by cjack:<BR><B>...Any ideas?</B><HR></BLOCKQUOTE><P>Yes. Have a great time!<P>I'm in a very similar situation. I can afford to do many, many things my STBX cannot. That's her choice.<P>Hawaii is a lot of fun, I've been there several times. It's not a good kids vacation. You're daughter would not have a very good time there. Go to Hawaii. Have fun. Many Mai Tai's [Linked Image from marriagebuilders.com]<P>When you get back, plan a vacation with your daughter. I took my son to Maine skiing in February & we had a blast. I know he wouldn't have enjoyed Hawaii. One thing you can do that I like is to let your daughter drive the planning & picking out the vacation. My son & I will do a vacation together every year from now on. Next year it's going to be mountain biking & whitewater rafting.<P>My point is this, explain to your daughter that you want a vacation, and that the two of you will do something later. I'm sure she'll understand.<P>You deserve a vacation for you. Heck, you might even get lei'd [Linked Image from marriagebuilders.com]<P>Have fun! Aloha!<P>------------------<BR>nick<P>it's only time that heals the pain <BR>and makes the sun come out again

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...Nick..."lei'd"...hehehe...good one.<P>Cjack,<P>I quadruply (is that a word) echo the sentiments already expressed - this appears to be your ex's pity party. Let her wallow in it.<P>Enjoy yourself - drink a Mai Tai for all of us - and take pictures if you attempt the hula - we'd all like to see them...<P>Lisa <BR>(aka Soon2b)<P>------------------<BR>I am woman...hear me roar...okay - meow...okay - purr? Hey, I'm working on it.

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Hey, I know.....<P>.....you could do a "live remote" for us from Wakiki beach or the north shore of Oahu, whichever you prefer. OR, you could even hop over to the northern most island of Kawai (sp?, my atlas is misplaced) and do a remote from the Fern Grotto. <P>I think a helicopter tour of the big island and the volcano there would be great too! Have some time to yourself, leave the guilt trip that someone want to put on you at home! You'll be glad you did! Almost makes me wish I was living there again, darn!<P>Ragamuffin

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Thanks to everyone who replied!<P>Max: Ignoring her just makes her mad! [Linked Image from marriagebuilders.com]<P>Hopless in AZ: Thanks for climbing on your soapbox. I needed that!<P>Nick: I like the idea of letting her plan the next one, but I don't know how much more of Disneyland I can take! [Linked Image from marriagebuilders.com]<P>Lisa: No hula in these plans! I plan to spend 99 percent of my waking hours doing absolutely nothing on a beach!<P>Ragamuffin: I'm actually planning on going to Kauai (sp?). I work with a couple of people who used to live there as well. The live remote thing is a good angle...I could get PAID to lie on a beach!<P>Thanks again to all...<P>cj

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"Max: Ignoring her just makes her mad! "<P>That's her problem. Not yours. If you let your ex interfere in your life she will (unless of course you want her to). Otherwise enjoy your vacation.

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Kauai. Excellent choice. Best island over there. Enjoy.<P>Well, in the planning process, you could provide a little guidance. I like to spend time with my son with not too many others around. Hiking, Mtn biking, those types of vacations to remote areas allow for some serious one-on-one time. And no screaming kids like Disneyhell [Linked Image from marriagebuilders.com]<P>I love vactions with my son. He is the coolest little guy I ever helped make. I hope when he grows up he gets a cool little guy to raise, just like I did.<P>Aloha, have fun on the "barking" sands [Linked Image from marriagebuilders.com]<P>------------------<BR>nick<P>it's only time that heals the pain <BR>and makes the sun come out again

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Now promise me that you will drink Mai Tai for me.<P>AAAHHH bliss, alone on a beach just hanging out no pressure for witty conversation, no pressure about how do I measure up to the other women/men, no schedule. How I envy you.<P>Relax and enjoy.

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Thanks again for the replies!<P>Max: Thanks for the reality check. She is a very jealous person and hasn't quite gotten a clue as to what divorce really means. She thinks we're still friends and there is still a chance for "us." I'm enjoying my freedom for the first time in 6 years, and I think she is having a problem with that.<P>Nick: "Barking" sands? You'll have to explain that one to me! Do I want to go to the North shore, or the South? Aloha!<P>Hopeless in AZ: Are you really hopeless? I don't think so.<BR>Don't envy me, just figure out how you can do it yourself! [Linked Image from marriagebuilders.com]<BR>

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Feeling less hopeless everyday. I have zeroed in on a possible career path or two that I feel real good about and things don't seem as bleek as they did a few weeks ago.<P>As for a vacation....well a month on my parents cattle ranch with my kids is what I'm getting. No complaints as it is a great get away. I can go walking for miles and not see a soul. I love to go sit on top of a hill and look out for miles and relish in the beauty of it all. The ranch has been in the family for 4 generations and I'm pretty attached to it. <P>Maybe next year for "my" vacation. Unless I am too busy promoting my business!!!

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"barking" is the sound the sand makes when you walk on it. Also the name of the Pacific Missile Range Facility there. South side is my favorite, but the whole island is relaly nice. I think Jurrasic park was filmed there.<P>Mai tai's go down awfully easy in the sun. Be careful....<P>------------------<BR>nick<P>it's only time that heals the pain <BR>and makes the sun come out again<p>[This message has been edited by c00ker (edited May 05, 2001).]


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