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leaving home and the pain of being away from my kids
#1
Hi All,

I have recently separated from my wife and my kids after being married for 17 years. I have a 15 years old Daughter and 6 years old twin boys. This seperation from the kids is very painful and I am feeling very depressed. I have access to see them twice a week, which is a blessing, but the thought of not seeing them every day and not talking to them every day is killing me from inside.

I would really love to hear your thoughts and advice on how to cope with this pain, and what strategies or ways you used to feel better and manage this situation, which I am hoping to be just a phase that will pass?

thank you.

Sim
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#2
This was one of the biggest heartbreaks I have had in my life, after being told she had cheated on me. It's tough man, but do what you can to occupy yourself. Make the most of your free time, reconnect with friends, take up a hobby, watch all those movies she was never interested in. I also started doing some volunteer work to keep me occupied and meet some new people.

It's also worth spending a bit of time reading up on divorce, etc. Don't roll over and agree to everything she says. If you need to, make a note of it, say you will have a think and get back to her when you've had time to process.

If you're only seeing them in person twice a week, you might suggest Facetime (or other video call) a few nights a week just to say Hi. This worked for me as it meant I got to catch up on their day, tell them I loved them and say goodnight, as well as reinforcing when I would next see them. Calls with younger kids don't last long so shouldn't impact her time with them. You can return the favour if you take the kids away for a weekend, which she will appreciate as she might not be used to being apart from them.

Hang in there and just make sure you (and they) enjoy the time you spend together. Try not to get unduly angry/shouty with them, which is so easy to do when you're under so much emotional stress and desperately want your time together to be perfect (it won't always be, kids are kids  Wink ).

Best of luck
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#3
I learned to fill the time between seeing them, with planning and organising for the time son would be with me. Looking up places to go, researching stuff he'd asked me to find out about (how do you do xyz with redstone on minecraft). The day before, getting food in, thinking about what we'd have, getting clothes sorted etc. So it's like they do live with you full-time but have just gone away for a few days. Son also likes to leave me a few "jobs" to do - like getting xyz for him before he comes back - that kind of thing keeps a mental connection even when they are away - so they know you are doing something for them and look forward to picking up when they come back. Never see it as part time - I see it as he is here full-time in my life and mind and just goes somewhere else for a few days. You are a full-time Dad even if you don't see them all the time.

Not sure how amicable it is but offer to take them places and do the driving - after school clubs or whatever, then you see them more. How much time do you get twice a week? A full week-end every other week should happen really. And holiday times as well. I would try and keep on amicable terms if you can.
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