Poll: Would you ...
stay in contact
make a fresh start
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Stay in contact or fresh start
#1
Would be interested to hear the view of more seasoned separated dads.

Myself and my partner of 8 years separated recently and she has moved to a nearby town with our 4yro daughter. To begin with I was keen to have lots of time with my daughter and my ex also wanted me to have plenty of time with her too. 

But since our split my daughter has instinctively stuck close to her mum, which is totally understandable. She doesn't want to come with me, constantly asks to see her mummy and is often upset. She really just wants to stay with her mum.

I'm finding my parent time really hard, as I just seem to be dragging my daughter away from where she wants to be. In the future I can only see this becoming more difficult when my ex has a new partner and they become a new family unit, and my daughter effectively has a new dad.

So, I'm considering breaking off contact (expect for paying maintenance) and making a fresh start, I think this is the only way for me to move on with my life.

For those who have been doing this for a while, is it worth staying in contact?
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#2
(11-30-2017, 12:56 PM)nibbler Wrote: Would be interested to hear the view of more seasoned separated dads.

Myself and my partner of 8 years separated recently and she has moved to a nearby town with our 4yro daughter. To begin with I was keen to have lots of time with my daughter and my ex also wanted me to have plenty of time with her too. 

But since our split my daughter has instinctively stuck close to her mum, which is totally understandable. She doesn't want to come with me, constantly asks to see her mummy and is often upset. She really just wants to stay with her mum.

I'm finding my parent time really hard, as I just seem to be dragging my daughter away from where she wants to be. In the future I can only see this becoming more difficult when my ex has a new partner and they become a new family unit, and my daughter effectively has a new dad.

So, I'm considering breaking off contact (expect for paying maintenance) and making a fresh start, I think this is the only way for me to move on with my life.

For those who have been doing this for a while, is it worth staying in contact?

Wow, dude - that's a really strong admission there, and I can totally understand where you are coming from.

I'm personally only six weeks in to the separation, so unable to offer any advice gained over the long-term, but I do know that what you're describing is one of my greatest fears.

How long ago did you split?
How often do you have your daughter?
What sort of stuff do you do with her when you have her?
What was your relationship like with her prior to the split?
What's your relationship like with your ex?
Are there any court orders in place?

Just trying to work out if parental alienation is at play, although it doesn't sound like it if you say your ex wants you to spend time with your daughter?

Little girls always need their Dads, bro - would she feel that you abandoned her, further down the line?
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#3
(11-30-2017, 12:56 PM)nibbler Wrote: Would be interested to hear the view of more seasoned separated dads.

Myself and my partner of 8 years separated recently and she has moved to a nearby town with our 4yro daughter. To begin with I was keen to have lots of time with my daughter and my ex also wanted me to have plenty of time with her too. 

But since our split my daughter has instinctively stuck close to her mum, which is totally understandable. She doesn't want to come with me, constantly asks to see her mummy and is often upset. She really just wants to stay with her mum.

I'm finding my parent time really hard, as I just seem to be dragging my daughter away from where she wants to be. In the future I can only see this becoming more difficult when my ex has a new partner and they become a new family unit, and my daughter effectively has a new dad.

So, I'm considering breaking off contact (expect for paying maintenance) and making a fresh start, I think this is the only way for me to move on with my life.

For those who have been doing this for a while, is it worth staying in contact?


Honestly? I think one day you'll wake up and regret cutting off contact. And by then it'll be too late.

I don't want that to sound harsh, because believe me I really feel for you - I know the agony that you're going through. And I know that if you didn't care about your daughter, you wouldn't be considering such a drastic measure. 

But I think that for the pair of you - both now and in the future - this would be a mistake.
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#4
I think you should tough it out for a while yet. If you’ve only split recently your daughter will still be getting used to it, which could explain why she is reacting like she is. As her dad you have to try and provide her with some stability and consistency, even if it’s tough for you.

Personally I don’t think you should ever cut off contact fully unless children choose this when they are much older. If you do decide you can’t carry on as things are, at worst I would say become like a more distant relative that sees children occasionally and always remembers birthday and Christmas etc. But even then, keep a close eye on how she is developing, and then increase contact if it’s clear she wants to see you more or would clearly benefit from it.
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#5
Thanks for the responses guys, I needed that. I was starting to put my needs ahead of my daughters' and that's not on. I've got to face the music for her sake, as painful as that gets.

It's nearly two months apart and it's raw and I guess it's tempting to run away from the cause. I had a great relationship with my daughter before everything started, one which I've now learned my ex is jealous of (she complains that her relationship with her isn't good enough). Some emotional issues there which I have yet to understand.

So far my relationship with my ex has been respectful but tense, and I can't let that deteriorate for my daughter's sake. There have been no courts yet, thank God.

@AkentishMan - you're absolutely right that little girls always need their Dads. Who knows maybe one day me and her might live under the same roof again.
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#6
(11-30-2017, 04:55 PM)nibbler Wrote: Thanks for the responses guys, I needed that. I was starting to put my needs ahead of my daughters' and that's not on. I've got to face the music for her sake, as painful as that gets.

It's nearly two months apart and it's raw and I guess it's tempting to run away from the cause. I had a great relationship with my daughter before everything started, one which I've now learned my ex is jealous of (she complains that her relationship with her isn't good enough). Some emotional issues there which I have yet to understand.

So far my relationship with my ex has been respectful but tense, and I can't let that deteriorate for my daughter's sake. There have been no courts yet, thank God.

@AkentishMan - you're absolutely right that little girls always need their Dads. Who knows maybe one day me and her might live under the same roof again.

I think you're making the right decision. And you've chosen the hard path - I applaud you for that.

But please don't beat yourself up - I think I speak for all of us when I say that we've had moments when our head goes down and we lose faith during all of this. 

That's actually the thing that binds us all on this forum - we've all felt the loss of our children and are driven to stay part of their lives.

You're not alone - and you won't be judged.
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#7
Hi nibbler....things must be rough right now for you to think that...I would say stay in contact...hang in there bro...I'm sure it will get better. Just give it some more time. Must be hard for your daughter aswell. You said you had a good relationship with your her before and I'm sure you will get that back....stay strong for her and make sure the time you have with her is special. Show her how much you love her....you will always be her daddy.
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#8
Well done mate, you won't regret it.

Stick through the hard times with your little'un and she'll learn the importance of that, later in life.

Be her hero, bud...do stupid sh1t with her, build a den in your front room, take her to a soft play or a park, play with her dollies with her...sure I'm teaching you to suck eggs, but just show her that Dad time is fun time, so she looks forward to it every time.

(11-30-2017, 05:54 PM)Petem Wrote: I think you're making the right decision. And you've chosen the hard path - I applaud you for that.

But please don't beat yourself up - I think I speak for all of us when I say that we've had moments when our head goes down and we lose faith during all of this. 

That's actually the thing that binds us all on this forum - we've all felt the loss of our children and are driven to stay part of their lives.

You're not alone - and you won't be judged.

Amen to that, brother - Petem is basically the Yoda of this forum.
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#9
Thanks everyone for the encouragement. The solidarity on this forum means a lot right now.

I picked my daughter up this morning from my ex's house for the school run and she ran to the door shouting daddy! Her little world has been turned upside down in the last few months and I know I can't make it worse for her by disappearing from her life - that simply can't happen, I would regret it.

So when my ex moves down south, which she says she wants to do, I'm going to do the miles to see her. Or when I meet her new man and feel jealous, I'm just going to have to suck it up for her. in the past I have taken the easy path but this will have to be different.
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#10
Well done you. And we'll done for posting. A lesson to us all. Sometimes you need a voice from outside your circle to advise. She s probably doing through nothing more than a phase. And even is she wasn't, it can be the case that she's mummy upset and wants to stay with her to make her feel better. Both have happened to me.

Never give up. If you live there you wouldnt. When they are older they may tell us all to take a walk but honestly, would you give up then either? Not easily that's for sure.
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