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There is no throwing up icon.

There is no panic icon.

There is nothing to express what I feel right now.

My daughter just told me she thinks she wants to go live with her dad.

But we are too close to the school year starting to do it now. Wouldn't be until next summer, possibly.

I just sat there. I finally said it was natural and to be expected.... And that she and her brother had been what got me through...That I had been the one there for her for all these years...That I wasn't the one to leave....

Yeah, maybe I shouldn't have said all that....

Then I said she was the biggest blessing, besides good parents, that I had in this world and that there was only One person who loved her more. That person is God

And she should remember that I love her
-As high as the sky
-As deep as the sea
-As wide as the whole world
-As long as forever
-As true as can be

(Her nightly blessing)

Then I left her room and she went to call her dad and tell him that she had told me.

<img border="0" alt="[Teary]" title="" src="graemlins/teary.gif" />

<img border="0" alt="[Teary]" title="" src="graemlins/teary.gif" />

<img border="0" alt="[Teary]" title="" src="graemlins/teary.gif" />

<small>[ August 21, 2004, 04:17 PM: Message edited by: cinderella ]</small>

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Ohhhh...that hurts. Next year is a long time away tho....plenty of time to think about things.

How is custody set up with you...and how does your ex interact with your daughter?

Hang in there...breathe deeply and try to stay calm. Prayer tends to work wonders also. You will be in mine tonight. Take Care Pat

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I am so sorry that she has said this to you!! I know that it hurts my OD did it to me and then screamed and hollered at me that she hated me and everything else. But right then at the time her dad wasn't even taking care of himself. She got over it!!!

And like Pat says next year is a long time from now and things can change.

I know that you feel betrayed again as you are the one that has always been there for her and will always be there for her. Just let her know how much it is that she is loved by you no matter what or where she lives.

You and her both will be in my prayers tonight!

Dawn <img border="0" title="" alt="[Smile]" src="images/icons/smile.gif" />

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My dearest princess,

I too have been in your shoes, when my S was not doing well in school and for a brief moment he considered living with his dad. I don't mean the thought passed through his mind...I mean he actually weighed the pros and cons, and considered whether a male influence in his teens might be best, and dad is a stricter disciplinarian whereas I'm more gentle, and since my son is ADHD as is his dad--sometimes dad understands things that I can't and understands routine and schedules...

You get the drift.

At first I felt like I wanted to die. How COULD he?? How could my S even consider going to live with the unstable, abusive, unfaithful guy who had literally abandoned him MORE THAN ONCE??? HOW???? It seemed incomprehensible to me that I would give up my needs to provide for my S, and yet he would consider just moving in with the man took off for months at a time whenever! How is that possible? What...can exH just do ANYTHING and be forgiven??? Can't he see that his dad consistently chooses cheating and lying about money rather than supporting his own children?? Why is my S doing this??

That's when I got the frypan on the head. God bonked me a good one. This wasn't about "me" and what I need or "what I did to sacrifice for the kids" or "who cheated on who" or even "who left his kids"...this was about my S and what he needed! And good, bad, or ugly that man was his FATHER. And yes I did sacrifice at times for my children, but I did so willingly and it was my choice--they didn't owe me. And yes, exH did not sacrifice for his children, but they EACH had to come to understand that on their own, in their own way.

Speaking as a child whose father sexually abused her, I did not feel hatred or anger toward my father over the way he treated me...I longed for his approval! I wanted to be friends with him and I wanted him to like me. To some degree, I even idolized him and wanted spend time with him. Well, geez...doesn't it make sense that my kids might feel similarly about their own father? Even if he was rageful and mentally ill, he is their DAD, and they probably long for his approval and want him to like them! DUH!!!

So, my lovely majesty, I know you feel like the lowliest rug right now, but put yourself in your D's shoes. She does not see her dad as the permanently fogged-in, selfish man that you do...she sees him as her daddy. And he IS her daddy.

In the end, I panicked on the inside but gave my S the freedom to explore the option of moving in with his dad. On his own, of his own decision and conclusion, he decided that if dad couldn't even handle seeing him once a week--chances were pretty good that he wouldn't be able to handle living together and would probably end up abusive. And the good part is that S decided that on his own--so it's HIS decision that he has embraced. He reached that conclusion on his own, so now he feels like it is HIS OWNERSHIP.

Let your D explore the possibility, princess. Talk to her about the pros and cons. Let HER figure out a "how mommy has acted" and "how daddy has acted" chart and reach the conclusion on her own. That way, she will feel like SHE made her own choice and she will support it on her own.

BTW, also bear in mind that our ex MAY be leading her by the nose in some effort to reduce CS and such too. Hey, your ex is tricky...I wouldn't put it beyond him!! Keep an eye out for that and be a wise mama. I know you love your kids, but this isn't about you and what you need. It's about your D and what she needs.


CJ

<small>[ August 03, 2004, 02:54 AM: Message edited by: FaithfulNewCJ ]</small>

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Princess, it will be okay. Most of my girlfriends from divorced families toyed with living with their dad. One did. The others didn't.

It's the teenage mother daughter thing sometime.

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Careful not to allow a sense of betrayal take hold. What CJ said was right on.

Both my girls at one time or the other expressed an interest to live with their mom. The first time I allowed the betrayal sense to come in and that was my bad. A lot of it had to do with me trying to manage a blended family and shield my new wife from all that.

After several years they both approached me with interest on living with their mom. And my wife was very excited at the idea of it being just the two of us. To me it felt like betrayal² and when it did happen my ex took it to the extreme and attempted a custody change. I felt like a failure as a Father.

It took me awhile, but I learned CJ's lesson. It's not about you and how good of a parent you are.

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x has planted this idea, watered this idea, fertilized this idea, and nurtures it.....

he and wife are building a brand new condo close to my house.

Sneaky thing went through my mind....I have the right amount of house but it is arranged WRONG. And I have half an acre of yard but that is more than I need.....I would consider more give and take between the children as long as I maintain primary care. I could live in the same development - end unit as far from them as available. Children could have the freedom to go back and forth more....

D's best friend lives with her dad.
D has friend at church who goes to the school her dad would like for her to attend....a school that does not offer adequate academic challenge for this gifted child - according to what I hear about the school.

x and daughter are both somewhat manipulative with x being a champion at it.....d has no respect for my property or my boundaries and is your typical often b----y teenage girl.

I've already called her psychologist who can help me stay stable and steady...With school starting in less than 2 weeks, it's time for a visit anyway. D sees her only occaisionally - I keep her going sporadically for check-ups....she had a depressed spell a few months ago and it was good to have her around....when we have traumas, it assures us fairly rapid access to some sort of mental health consultation. Even if her dad thinks she doesn't need the psychologist. And with a second school change in two years, I think a visit or two this fall would be good.

Meanwhile, she is becoming excited about the start of the school year. As is son.

BTW, I think she may think that going to her dad's would get her more attention as her brother wouldn't be there all the time.

Our parenting schedule has the children splitting each weekend between homes so they are not w/ dad more than 24 hours straight more weekends. I am considering suggesting that we go to an every other weekend schedule and their weekends with him can be from Fri PM to Mon AM school drop off. That would give them more time for reality.

I'm doing ok. I do think I need a psychiatrist now to manage ADD medication and maybe throw in an antidepressant so I won't get too far down too quickly because I bet x is going to push the issue.

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Hi Cinderella,
I don't know if you'll remember me...I don't post much anymore, but your post really hit home.
My 18 year old daughter moved in with her dad last weekend. It is just killing me.
I have been divorced for about four years, just before her graduation from 8th grade, and told her (and my 16yo son) that they just didn't get to choose where they were to live until after high school graduation.
Well...she graduated a few months ago, and just broke up with a boyfriend...hated her job, so she left. I checked myself into a hotel last weekend because I knew I couldn't bear watching her take her stuff out of the house.

You know the kicker? Since my former husband is now happily married to the OW...and they live in a big nice home, drive nice cars, seem to have plenty of extra money...I wonder if it's better for her...and possibly my 16yo son that is still here with me...to live there. They can certainly offer them more financially than I can and there are two of them vs. one of me.

I pray I am doing a good job here struggling by on my own. I try to be the very best mom I can be and am petrified that my 16yo will want to go now too. I don't know what I will do if he does.

I am sorry that this is no help to you. I don't mean to add to your sadness with mine. I just know how you feel and wanted to tell you that I am sorry you're going through this too.

I believe we are good moms...and I just dont' know what these kids are thinking. I think sometimes it's just a whole lot more about THEM than it is about US. The only thing we can do is try our hardest not to take it personally.

It is a nightmare Princess. I will keep you in my thoughts.

allison

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I am sorry for your pain and I understand it completely. My 18 year old son went to live with his dad (2 miles down the road) when he graduated and still lives with him. He is 20 now. It still hurts me and I know the reason that he went to live there was because his dad requires no rules. (or not many). I wanted him to get a job and I wanted him not sitting in the house playing playstation all day. So, his answer to that was "move with dad" who is out of town a lot and single. He still comes to eat a lot and spend time with his brothers, but its not the same. I feel he is losing family values and special things that you get from a "family" environment, but what can I do? I just want you to know that I sympathize with you and know how you feel . Sorry.

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</font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Arial">Originally posted by cinderella:
Our parenting schedule has the children splitting each weekend between homes so they are not w/ dad more than 24 hours straight more weekends. I am considering suggesting that we go to an every other weekend schedule and their weekends with him can be from Fri PM to Mon AM school drop off. That would give them more time for reality.</font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Arial">That’s exactly what I want to suggest!
MOREOVER, arrange with your husband to have your daughter for a WHOLE WEEK! from time to time!
For the beginning. (Tell him you either have some things to do, or you are no there, or whatever works in your case; on the other side say to your daughter that you’ll be always there for her if she might need you.)
This way, your D will see what life with him could look like.
It’s very different when she sees him 'less than 24 hours' and when she sees him in every minute of a daily life with its routines, obligations, and life-is-not-just-a-fun hours.

I had the same fear, and still have to cope with.
My X is having our son also for short periods of time and it’s always fun and loving and caring… for those 4 hours per week!
The last weekend was the first full weekend he took our son (just 2,8 old), and he was "sooo exhausted" on Sunday afternoon bringing him back… My son told me X hit him!
And, X confirmed, said 'it was just symbolical'! Already, and just first weekend together, just after first 48 hours in row ever spent with him… <img border="0" title="" alt="[Roll Eyes]" src="images/icons/rolleyes.gif" />

My dear, our goal is to raise our children to be ready to live without us one day.

That day can be when they are 10, 14, or 20 or more… and they will leave us moms… with their dads, GFs/BFs, or to live alone – it shouldn’t be so big difference for us…
At least I 'program' myself to think so… that one day they won’t need us (to live with us)… but I’ll always make myself available in the case my son ever ask me for comfort/support/help… and that’s only I can do… He has his own life and RIGHT TO CHOSE, even if I don’t like it… and he WILL make choices that I won’t be pleased with, as I did vs. my parents wishes… and we HAVE TO ACCEPT their choices…
(Well, when I think this way, it works for me… hope it’ll do the same to you… <img border="0" title="" alt="[Smile]" src="images/icons/smile.gif" /> )

Also, you already sacrifice quite a lot for her and her health and her happiness… so – if she IS happy living (even with <img border="0" title="" alt="[Razz]" src="images/icons/tongue.gif" /> ) her dad – my dear, be happy too…
Isn’t it a goal of us mothers?!!

Try as suggested… it might stop the way of her thinking of living with dad, moreover, she will be PREPARED for it and in the case of a 'failure', it’ll hurt her less than if she moved (after a year of dreaming about) than got disappointed…

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Just a couple of quick thoughts...

1. It is not the end of the world, even if she does decide to leave. You are stronger than you think.

2. Patience! I was on the other end of a very similar situation just a few short months ago. D wanted to move back in with me, in part because she wanted to return to her school down here with all her old friends. She eventually dropped the idea, and this past Sunday, as we drove by her (new) school, she said "I can't wait to go back to school!"

Hang in there.

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I'm trying to decide if this is for real or an exercise.

She is journaling about me hitting her and causing bruises in common places so the wouldn't be shocking. Truth is, I don't hit her.

She writes about words I have written that she found betraying - things like '(my boyfriend's name) + (my name) forever' in a heart - the sort of things teenagers would do. I don't journal. I've told her repeatedly that I have no intention of packing up and dragging she and her brother from their dad. That I want them to see him and know him. That children need both their parents.
That she and her brother would leave for college before I would ever consider moving from this town. And, at the time I told her that, she seemed happy with the idea that I would still be there even when she was the first to go off to college.

Ah, children, their goal in life is to drive us crazy.

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Oh, Cinders, I'm so sorry. It sounds so stressful. You might want to talk to her therapist about those writings. I just wanted to let your know that you're in my thoughts.

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She didn't journal for about a week but she wrote several pages today.

I swear she doesn't act depressed. I'm confused and feel so panicky.

Seems like she's writing less about going to her dad's and more about suicide. Will I last long enough to get her to Dr. Gilbert's.

I feel so overwhelmed. Like this is from someone else's life.

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I'm feeling very paranoid about the whole thing. Very. Don't know if I am depressed or not but I see the psychiatrist this week. Couldn't come at a better time.

Thank goodness she also sees her pschologist this week, too.

Part of me is enjoying our time together better and part of me feels like I'm waiting to die.

She did a little writing then took a break. I don't think she's written anything in a few days but she took the book with her to her dad's today. No telling what lies she will write. Like I told her I was going to get another belt - one that would hurt....well, I did mention another belt but it was to ask her if she would like for me to knit her a belt. So, where do these lies come from and what is their pupose.

Is she going to give this to her dad to use as ammunition against me? The same dad who has pressured me for years to stop taking her to her psychologist?

How do you resolve the differences between the child writing about being suicidal and the child seeming so happy? Hormonal but happy.

I am SO not doing well with this.

<small>[ August 21, 2004, 04:24 PM: Message edited by: cinderella ]</small>

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Cinderella,

What has happened in her life this week? Has she started back to school? getting ready to start back to school?

Are her and her brother fighting more these days?
does she feel you side with her brother more than her?

Did she ask you buy her something and you said No?

Look at the little things or things that YOU think are minor--because to her--they might be big issues--

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Potential issues:

- She is seeing more of her best friend - who lives with her dad and stepmother. Friend supposedly has issues with this situation. Definite parallel. D is living with her mom (and brother) and is suddenly having trouble with it.

- Her dad and stepmother have, from what she said, talked to her over the years about the fact that, when she is a teenager, she could choose to come live with them.

- Her dad and stepmother are building a new townhouse.

- She is changing schools for the third time in 4 years. The first was totally necessary. She attends public schools and, at end of 4th grade, she had to change schools as that is the end of elementary school here. At the end of 6th grade, I found out how I could get her into one of the best public high schools in the state - if she changed schools for one year. So, last year, she changed schools to a school she did not like but succeeded at knowing that, at the end of the year, she would be able to move on to one of the two best high schools in the city and one of the best in the state.

- Her brother is also changing schools because he has some learning differences and would be overwhelmed in the public school system. There is not enough control/structure in that setting for him.

- Best friend has become a new member of the youth group where we go to church so best friend is getting a lot of attention.

- This was the first summer in years that d didn't go to day camp. At 13, there are few camps available.

- She is 13. That might be enough reason to be weird.

- She has talked for over a year about wanting a pair of Birkenstocks and I found a way to get her the style she wanted for $45 instead of $110. So, she got them.

- She went to a 2 week orientation program at her new school. They kept stressing the importance of organization. I am an ADD adult and don't have that gene. And I keep house like an ADD single mom with a full-time job. In other words, I don't prioritize organization of the house. I don't have that ability. x is anal about organization/structure/things like that. Her father has complained about that to the children and they have told me. This was the reason she gave me for wanting to move "I need more structure and organization." But can I get either child to help? NO!!!!!

These are the only reasons I can think of.

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cinderella,

It sounds like she's got a lot of stress factors for a child going on--but the big question is how can YOU help her deal with it??

The issue that really stands out to me is this
one--

- Her dad and stepmother have, from what she said, talked to her over the years about the fact that, when she is a teenager, she could choose to come live with them.


TR--Have you asked her if that is something she would like to do?? Not that you want her too--but is it something she would like to try for awhile?

But it sounds like she feels she HAS to 'choose' between mom and dad--and that if she stays with you--she's hurting dad--and if she goes w/ dad she's hurting you--

And her comment about needing to be organized--fit's in with this as well--

Dad is organized, he will force me to be more organized too--something mom can't do--

It might also be why she may be writing things that aren't true--trying to convince herself that it really won't hurt if she decides to go live w/ her dad--

tough spot to be in for a 13 year old kid to feel totally responsible for her parents happiness--and them feeling love for her--

by that I mean--if she goes to live with dad--then mom will be mad at her and not love her anymore--(not that it's true--but it's how she's acting) as you stopped loving dad when he moved out--so for her--that means you would quit loving her too--if she were to move out--

And well dad already moved out--so He must not love us anymore--but he would love *me* again if I went to live with him--

I'd rather die than to have to choose between my parents--why can't they both just love me no matter where I live??

Why am I always the one having to make the changes? Having to change schools, change friends, change homes--I'm always having to do something--so they will love me--but nobody ever asked ME what I wanted!!

Nobody asked me if I wanted to go to a new school-
Nobody asked me if I wanted a divorce--
Nobody asked me---what I wanted--

I just have to do what they tell me--because they say it's BEST--

I know my ex tells my son--he can choose to go live with him when he's 13 as well--(however he hasn't said anything to the girls about this choice)but they already know they have the choice-

And our son has asked me if it's true--I told him yes it is true--he could choose to go live with his dad at that time--and then he'd get really sad, which would then turn to anger--mostly against himself--saying he should just kill himself--

I sat down with him each time he exploded this way--and just held him--and explained to him--that
this wasn't a choice he has to make now--and even more importantly--that no matter who he decided he wants to live--isn't going to change how either one of us feel about him--we will STILL love him--no matter where he lives be it with me, his dad, or when he grows up and moves away--we'll still love him--

And I tell him that if/when he decides to go live w/ his dad--I'd have to adjust to not seeing him everyday, just as he would have to adjust to not seeing me every day--but together we could do that--and he could call me if he missed me and wanted to talk--just as I would call him--I told him it wouldn't be easy for me--but I'd do it--because it's what he wanted--and because I love him so much, and his happiness is important to me-
I'd let him go--and see him every other weekend--

My son is 9, and struggles with that--so just talk to her openly about it--ask her if she's afraid that if she chooses to go live with her dad
that you'd be mad, upset or stop loving her--
as that is really what it sounds like she's struggling with--

It might also be why her friend is having such a hard time with it--she may feel like her mom stopped loving her--because she's living w/ her dad--

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TR - you said a lot of good things.

Regarding the school change...while she didn't want to do it, she and I talked about it and what could be gained by doing it. The first change was really hard on her. It all happened over the summer with no time to prepare to leave her friends after 6th grade. This change this year - for 8th grade - was the goal of the former change. By changing schools for 7th grade, she set herself up to get into one of the best public high schools in the state without having to hold her breath for weeks during the lottery process. Seats are so hard to come by, they are awarded by lottery. But students at the school she attended last year can get in without going through the lottery. So, she had a lot of say in that one. Not total say but a lot of say. Her father never said anything about it and didn't contribute at all to the process. Never even thanked me for the hard work. And getting the info was not easy. His choice on where to send her is a private school which would not challenge her academically.

What scares me is that my job for the last 9 years has been to raise these children. I am looking forward to her going to a good college but I don't know how I would cope if she moved to her dad's. It would feel like he was taking her away from me. He took my financial security. He cost me social status when he left. He left his then-loving wife totally devastated. And it took me years to recover. Years. I can't do that again.

I think she is hoping to get away from her annoying brother. Yes, he is annoying. Not too much more than her bit--y hormonal 13-y-o attitude can be, though.

Nate's dad left when he was 2. I don't know how he would cope if Gillian left. I honestly don't know how he would cope.

She did see her counselor today. I don't ask what she talked about - she says she talked for almost a whole hour and she said she doesn't often do that. The counselor wants her to come back in 3-4 weeks. When I told d about the appt, she rolled her eyes and said "Still?" because she doesn't like going.

But she hasn't complained about the idea of going back.

<small>[ August 26, 2004, 11:41 PM: Message edited by: cinderella ]</small>


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