For 'the other side'.

loridarlin

Hello, I have a message from a biological dad with custody to "The other side".

Intact familys are not always the best basis for children to grow up in. If one parent will not except responsibility and will not help the other parent raise the children properly. I do not care what you believe but if you do not believe this statement then you do not have a clue about raising children.

Thats all.

Just a little message from a BF with custody that has read your post and obviously realizes you are a nut! lol

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finedreams

define "properly".

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sieryn

properly:

1.adapted or appropriate to the purpose or circumstances; fit; suitable:

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finedreams

suitable for whom and fit based on what and appropriate for whom? what is appropriate for you is completely inappropriate for me. and judging what people tell here about their families what is proper and appropriate differs from person to person and culture to culture.

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doodleboo

I will agree that intact families are not always the best environment for children.

Divorces happen because people no longer see eye to eye. They can't get along. They don't love each other anymore. They change. They find someone else. There is a ton of reason's it could happen. I believe it is better to move on. Divorce will hurt the child no less than seeing their parents miserablle all the time. Or even worse...watching them hurt each other over and over.

If these people stayed together "for the kids" and for the kids alone you can bet it would not be a very comfortable, stable or loving environment for the children. The resentment, stress and sometimes hate between the two parents would be felt by the kids. To me this would cause alot more emotional damage in the long run.

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ceph

I will second that intact families are not always the best...
To be honest, my uncle is a homophobic, selfish jerk.
My younger cousin was turning out to be a real little a55hole too (to quote my great-uncle: "I always knew he wouldn't amount to a pinch of bird sh1t, and that son of his isn't going to amount to a pinch of bird sh1t either")... Then, when the boys were about 15 and 13, my jerk of an uncle cheated on and left his wife. A year or two later, my cousins came to visit with their mom and the younger one was quite pleasant, he wasn't the mean, selfish sarcastic kid he had been for the previous 14 years or so. He is now 22 and has turned out to be a great guy, with a great girlfriend and he gets along really well with his mom. He has actually mentioned that he doesn't like what a selfish jerk is dad is, and that he's made a real effort to not turn out like him. (PS - their mom never badmouthed their dad to them)
My other cousin, the older one, came out of the closet a few years ago. His mom and her longterm BF are very supportive and my cousin's BF is welcome at their home. My cousin is a wonderful guy - my friends who have met him bemoan that he is gay because he's so nice and very good looking. When he came out to me, and I asked about his dad, he told me "I've been with BF for two years, we live together, but my dad has never asked me about my love life or made any mention of BF. When I tried to bring up BF, he told me he didn't care about my love life until I wanted to get married, only then would he meet my date." IMO, he would never have been comfortable with his orientation around his family if my uncle hadn't left.
It's too bad that the guys don't have a good relationship with their dad, but I firmly believe that they are better off for not having my mom's jerk of a brother in their day to day lives.

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ceph

Or maybe I was thirding?? LOL

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ashley1979

In my opinion what children need to see is a loving, working relationship, whether that is with their BM and BD or with a SM or SD. I know lots of people who come from intact families that have absolutely no idea how to argue constructively or be affectionate to their spouses mainly because they never witnessed these things from their parents.

My son's BD and I argued a lot, but we never came to any resolutions. Actually, his idea of a resolution was shutting me up in some way. One (of the many) reasons I left was that I wanted to have an example of a functional relationship for my son to build on. I wanted him to see adults, with 2 different ideas of how to do something, learning to compromise without someone backing down and giving in all the time because of fear.

My father told me a story of growing up an era where parents neither argued or showed affection for eachother in front of their children. He knew that they cared for eachother, but never heard them say any kind or encouraging words to eachother. On the other side of that, he never saw them argue. They would always have any and all discussions behind closed doors and with quiet voices. The result was a home where everyone coexisted instead of interracted. He told me that he had a had time after marrying my mom because she is a much more vocal person. He didn't know how to compromise with her. He would either put his foot down, or (more often) force her to make a decision since he didn't know how. This caused a lot of problems in their marriage early on. After my DS was born, my dad pulled me aside and told me what he had learned and that it had taken him 20 years to start learning it and he wasn't done learning yet. He also stressed the importance of not just telling my son how to do things, but being an example since he will learn most of everything this way.

I am in no way advocating having serious arguements in front of children. But, it might not hurt to hear the discussion and end result of maybe the age-old dinner arguement (what would you like for dinner?......I don't know what would you like?....etc.) just to show them how to compromise.

My BF and I feel like it's important for our children to see that we love eachother and that eachother is important. I'm learning to compromise and that would've never happened if I had stayed with BD just for the sake of the child. If we would have stayed together, my son would have a seriously warped way of treating women and an even more warped view of women in general. I was weak and spineless and driven by fear. I don't want him to think that's how all women are or that he should treat women that way.

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theotherside

"One (of the many) reasons I left was that I wanted to have an example of a functional relationship for my son to build on. I wanted him to see adults, with 2 different ideas of how to do something, learning to compromise without someone backing down and giving in all the time because of fear."

And how did you know that he was going to see ANY relationship, much less a "functional" one, if you left your H when there was no one waiting in the wings? You would have had no way of knowing whether you would ever be in a committed relationship again. You also were making the choice to potentially expose your child to whatever future relationships your exH gets involved in, and what makes you think they will be "functional?"

Not to mention that there was always the option of staying together and choosing NOT to back down, to become something other that "weak and spineless and driven by fear." You seem to be implying that your boyfriend is somehow responsible for your personality change.

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loridarlin

TOS, when someone leaves a relationship they are for many reasons. No one knows the future but if they leave they are hopeful it will be a better one. A intact family is not always best for children to grow up in for many reasons. Like abuse and adulty those are just to of many. No one wants a child to learn or thing that hitting is okay and no one wants a child to think cheating is okay. Children do pay attention and they do learn by what they see. What ashley ment was she was not seeing the life she wanted for her child and had a better chance at it if they were apart. And it sounds like she was right on her part as I was with mine.
Anyway the post from the BF was to you why dont you try staying with it and not bashing someone else.

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imamommy

"And how did you know that he was going to see ANY relationship, much less a "functional" one"

When I started dating, I chose to only date guys that I felt would lead to the kind of relationship I wanted. I was very picky and knowing what I wanted as well as what I didn't want, made all the difference. Finding a great guy might happen with luck, but it's more likely gonna happen with effort.

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imamommy

it will never happen if you waste your life pining for someone that doesn't want you or someone you can't have. it will never happen if you spend your life angry and bitter at men. it will never happen if you spend all your time on the gardenweb.

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kkny

Ima, I dont see TOS wasting her life. She works full time, is raising a number of children. I dont define not having a man in my life as wasting my life.

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finedreams

i completely agree with kkny.

first of all raising that many children does not leave much time for personal life. and I think TOS still has minor children. now there is also a big difference how to raise children. it seems that TOS is doing a good job, her adult children are educated and succesful and her younger children are on the pathway to success. all of her children are close and helpful to each other. she herself has education and career and apparently works. and probably has hobbies and other family members and friends. i totally agree that not having a man does not mean a waste at all!!!!

I did not raise that many kids, only one, but most of my adulthood I was not dating or was not in a relationship. i was busy with bunch of other stuff. in fact i think that only now i am in a first trully serious relationship since i got divorced very long time ago. My DD whom i raised a succesful young adult is on a right path in life and i accomplished very much in my life on my own. my life was very happy and full-filling. it is also fullfilling now when i am in a relationship but it was not less happy when i had no man in my life. i think it is a very wrong thing to teach young girls that they need a partner (a man or a woman) in life to be happy or succesful. hope nobody teaches their daughters this way!

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theotherside

When making the decision to divorce when you have children, one needs to compare the current situation with how well off the child will be growing up with a single parent and having to visit with the other parent, regardless of his or her parenting skills or with whom he chooses to associate (unless they are proven drug dealers or such). Another possible scenario to consider is that the divorcing party could lose primary or even any custody. It is irresponsible to choose to divorce based on a best case scenario, but that is precisely what people in the midst of affairs tend to do. They tend to believe that they will leave their husband/wife, live happily ever after with their affair partner, get primary custody of their children if they wish to, the children will love their new partner and vice versa, and everything will be fine and dandy. As we all know, life rarely plays out like that.

loridarlin,
If your bf wished to post on this board, then it is easy enough to sign up for a screen name and do so. I have no idea what his post was in reference to, because as far as I know there has been no recent discussion of whether intact families are better until you started this thread.

ima,

As they say, a woman without a man is like a fish without a bicycle.

"it will never happen if you spend all your time on the gardenweb."

Coming from you, that is just plain hilarious. Thanks for the laugh.

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finedreams

LOL, tos

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kkny

Ima, with all due respect, some of us were just as selective in chosing the father of our first child(ren). I know you have pulled yourself up, and I do commend you for that. But I don't think you understand that the type of choices you made in your 30s, others made in their 20s. And if you are ever looking for a man when you are in your 50s, then you can give more seasoned advice to others of that age.

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pseudo_mom

Thats when you look for a man with uneven shoulders from the weight of his padded wallet.

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kkny

Pseudo,

That is exactly what my Xs GF did. I would like to think I have too much integrity to do that. I meant things like being a caring, responsible person.

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colleen777

"I would like to think I have too much integrity to do that. I meant things like being a caring, responsible person."

A person just has to shake their head at your myopia. You have zero for integrity and you must be dreaming if you think you are a caring, responsible person.

The comments you just made to ima are worthless and obnoxious. You have no control kkny, you don't get the difference between a little jab and full frontal assault.

Are you just naturally a very mean person, or is that mental pause you are going through?

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kkny

Another hillarious reply.

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ceph

I would also agree that TOS isn't wasting her life...
I would agree that she dwells and broods over a jerk, which probably isn't the most happiness-inducing thing she could be doing, but she appears to be successfully raising kids and working a job she enjoys.

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finedreams

that's very mean and rude colleen to tell the person she has no integrity. nothing what she shared about her life experiences indicates lack of inegrity or lack of responsibilities, quiet the opposite. she does not seem to be doing anything quetionable in her life, neither now nor in the past. Unless of course you know her from real life, which is very unlikely.

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ceph

Hmm, KK, see, I didn't think Colleen was trying to be funny (punny, maybe). I'm pretty sure she was seriously asking if you're genuinely mean.

My unsolicited opinion about KK being mean: KK has a nice side, but for some reason, generally shows us her bitter side. I think that KK often interprets people's complaining about their SO's ex as a personal affront, but since many of us have tried to watch the generalizations, she's been taking it easier. I think that KK has a lot of frustration with her ex, which is understandable, but doesn't want to blame him, so chooses to blame his SO instead, and that comes out here as an anti-SM attitude.
That's just what I think, and maybe I'm way off-base. Many of us on here (me included) are guilty of many of the same sorts of offenses... We just deal with them differently and KK is on 'the other side', along with TOS (FD comes and goes between 'sides') and so I think her shortcomings get overblown.

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ladygrace_2008

HAHAHAHAHAHA! REEAALLYY THE OTHER SIDE!

That is quite amusing coming from you who spends a lot of time on this site under the very ulterior motive of *study*.
An extremely bored middle aged divorced woman and very bitter, vitriolic first wife with too much time on her hands who loiters around a stepfamily forum, mostly frequented by stepmothers.
I have been reading here with interest for a little while before joining. I will say undoubtedly, Ima gives good advice and always tries to help in a constructive, compassionate way. Thats a lot more than you acheive my dear with your digs, prods, snarky comments and purile innuendo. And as for your hilarious claim to be here studying! LOL! Studying what TOS? Trolling 101?

I am thoroughly intrigued TOS! what is the payoff for you being here? You contribute little if nothing positive in the way of support or advice to the majority of the forum members here. It cant be the thrill of the debate because frankly my dear you cant debate your way out a wet paper bag without KKNY or one of your small number of cronies holding your hand. And I am not buying your "study" delusion. (study indeed). Now what could that leave? Could it be? Lets see... A bored bitter, divorced, middle aged woman with too much time on her hands and an internet connection and no imagination to think up something original to do... DoH! She goes and signs up on a Stepfamily forum where the membership is mostly stepmothers and designates herself Queen Troll! Really original!

You need to take yourself off to your local bookstore TOS, buy a dictionary and look up the meaning the word support. After all this is what the Stepfamily forum is supposed to be. A support forum! Not your personal troublemaking playground to take out your childish frustrations on innocent people.

And honey one final thing: When your man exited stage left;

YOU WERE SUPPOSED TO BUILD A BRIDGE AND GET OVER IT!
NOT COME HERE AND GET UNDER IT!

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colleen777

Thank you finedreams, those kind words mean so much to me coming from you.

So let me ask you this. Is it showing integrity to continously raise up some very traumatic experiences from years ago in another persons life as a way to slam them? See, in my world that is a total lack of integrity. There are many other ways to communicate your point without tearing the wound open again.

There is a BIG difference between saying someone is pining away for someone, which that person openly admits to, only in different words, than saying:

"some of us were just as selective in chosing the father of our first child(ren)." quote by kkny

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ceph

Yes, FD, you're right that Colleen was also being rude to say KK has no integrity. We don't really have a way to know that... We do have plenty of evidence that she has a mean streak, so I think asking about that was not too out-of-line.

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kkny

Colleen, I think Ima would be the first to say she has come a long way. Have you read her earlier posts?

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colleen777

Excuse me kkny is this you asserting your moral superiority again? Who are you to sit in judgement of anyone's journey? Nobody has come a long way anymore than anyone else. Have YOU come a long way?

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ceph

Ima HAS come a long way!
Don't try to tear down what she has done.
Many people here have come a long way. Many of us have broken out of abusive marriages, stepped up to help SKs climb emotional mountains, been dirt-poor single moms with little or no support from dads, put ourselves through school, dealt with our own 'interesting' stepparents, you name it and someone here has been through it! I say congratulations to all for the hurdles we have jumped!

Also, ROFL, at our new ranter, Ladygrace. That cracked me up!

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kathline

Does every post have to end up in an IMA/TOS slag? Please

Colleen, KKNY may have said it, but the fact is, IMA in this instance seemed to attack TOS, immediately after she ( ima) posted this

"When I started dating, I chose to only date guys that I felt would lead to the kind of relationship I wanted. I was very picky and knowing what I wanted as well as what I didn't want, made all the difference. Finding a great guy might happen with luck, but it's more likely gonna happen with effort."

Its not implausible that the first thing that went through my head when I read that was....what, you had kids with three different men, none of whom you married, and you somehow think you are a relationship expert? I dont think in the past IMA was particularly choosy, although I certainly hope she was with her husband.

KKNY actually said it much more nicely than I thought it. NO, it shouldnt have to be brought up, because IMA is no longer that person. BUt really, when Ima attacks TOS, portraying herself as some kind of relationship expert, she sort of opens herself up for it.

I just wish IMA would ignore TOS' posts, and vice versa, since the two of them seem to spark off each other. I am getting tired of seeing the personal attacks.

I am getting to the point where I am sick of this board, because its turning into a bunch of high school whiners.

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colleen777

We have all come a long way ceph. And please don't put words in my mouth. I am in NO way trying to tear down what IMA has accomplished in her life and in fact quite the opposite.

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ladygrace_2008

KKNY,
who are you to sit on the throne of judgement? That's a pretty high stance you are taking there lady! Ima has put in the hard hard yards getting to where she is now. what is this? The Imamommy anti fan club or something?

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ceph

No no, I thought KK was trying to tear down Ima - not that you were.

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imamommy

"Ima, I dont see TOS wasting her life"

Well, kkny must think the same of TOS if she thinks I was talking about TOS. I was talking in general. If you are hung up on a guy and spend all your time at home on your computer, you are less likely to find a great guy. That wasn't directed at anyone in particular but if the shoe fits, then the shoe fits.

and as for the choices I made in my 30's that others made in their 20's, that's true. But, I also had different life experiences that I've learned and benefited from in my 30's that I didn't have in my 20's. All I did was respond to a statement that if you are in a bad (dysfunctional) relationship and want to leave it to find a good one (functional), how would you know you will ever find any relationship and I was in a bad (dysfunctional) relationship and I knew that I wanted a good one so I determined what my criteria was for the good one, decided what I didn't want and when I decided to start dating years later, (I had nobody in the 'wings' when I left) I knew what I wanted and I dated a lot of people. Most were first dates that didn't meet my 'criteria' because they were mostly divorced guys that talked negatively about the ex wife on the first date. My husband isn't perfect, but he was a perfect fit and if he didn't meet my standards, I might still be alone but I would still be open to finding the right guy. I wouldn't give up and spend all my time being miserable and trying to make others miserable. When I was single, I loved my life. I wasn't unhappy being single, but I also know that I wanted to share my life with someone and while I enjoyed being alone, I didn't want to grow old alone. I guess for some people, that is fine with them and that's what they want, I'm only talking about me. If I should outlive my husband, it would not bother me to be alone again. I still wouldn't rule out finding someone to share my life with either.

But, the question was

"And how did you know that he was going to see ANY relationship, much less a "functional" one"

and I answered it based on MY experiences.

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serenity_now_2007

I have to admit I find it distressing how kkny and tos get so *demonized* on here for sharing their opinions and perspectives. I've been checking out these threads almost daily for six months now, and as heated as things get, I have NEVER seen either one of them call anyone else on here any insulting derogatory name (i.e. "troll"), even when they are being called such things. I have found their posts to be rational, articulate, and no more tainted by their own personal biases than ANY OF US on here (b/c we do all have 'em). They have their personal problems and things they cling to as ALL OF US do. They make the same amount of errors of assumption as do any of us given the limited actual knowledge we have of everyone on here. They have different perspectives than some others on here (and, occasionally, with each other), but these are no less valid than anyone else's. And again, apart from the fact that the content of their messages simply disagrees with someone else's viewpoint (or raises important questions about it which, if heeded, might actually help an SP gain some perspective, even if it's at times uncomfortable), I have never seen them be openly hostile to other posters on this board. They raise pointed questions and provocative arguments, and assert them plainly, but they don't namecall, or tell anyone else on here that they should get lost, or resort to suggesting that anyone else is crazy.

IMO, the heatedness of some of these debates can be very educational. I've actually gained a lot of insight even from those replies to my posts that most contradict or challenge me. They've all prompted me to think and examine my own behavior, and I think we're all better off for having the access we do here into the mindset of other people/roles in these situations.

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ceph

For the most part, I agree that TOS and KK take a lot of heat around here. A lot of it is undeserving, because none of the rest of us are prefect either...
When I get frustrated with them is when they only offer criticism or generalization, without any constructive ideas. I get frustrated with anyone who blindly criticizes without helping though, so it's not just ~them~. Perhaps I would be more tolerant of unconstructive criticism if people said "I don't have any advice here, but I think ___ could be the problem"

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imamommy

I must have missed a bunch of posts because I didn't see all the comments about me or TOS and I want to say to all those that thought I attacked TOS with my comment, would you mind pointing out how that is an attack on her, other than it followed HER comment that I was responding to?

I'm sure there are plenty of women out there that are still not over their ex, they spend way too much time at home & on the computer and they complain about men all the time. I met many of these types when I was working in the office. I have relatives like this. and if someone here thinks I attacked them by saying it, then it must have hit close to home because I don't know how much time anyone here spends on the computer, or exactly how they feel about their ex, or how they feel about men in general. As far as TOS is concerned, I only know what everyone else here knows from what she's written and if they all jump to the assumption that I am attacking HER, then they must think those things fit her. That's not my fault and it was not a personal attack on TOS. Sorry if it got interpreted that way.

BTW, would anyone disagree with my statement? Can you find a really great guy if you are doing those things? I'm curious and if I'm wrong, I'd be more than happy to apologize for it.

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kathline

I met my husband on the internet :D

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ashley1979

Thanks, IMA, for understanding my post. Just for the record, marriages and relationships go bad for lots of reasons; not just infidelity. I had no one waiting in "the wings". But my situation was worsening. I had no plan. I just had to get out. The night before I left my X was the final straw. It had started with throwing things at me and went to punching walls, screaming in my face, throwing me across the room while holding my baby and he hit me once in the face. He was getting more volitile. A couple of weeks before he threw me out of our car at 2 AM on the way home from an embarassing evening out with our friends, drove to my parents house, put our son in the car, drove back by me walking home (and sobbing and trying to call someone to get me), and told me that if I ever wanted to see our son again that I'd better get in the car. All of this with my 3 y/o watching from his carseat. The night before I left, we were at a birthday party with all of our friends and their children (including my son). My X's friends decided to throw him into a pool just as a prank. So one of them grabbed him and threw him over his shoulder. As they were on their way to the pool, I grabbed his wallet so it wouldn't get ruined. As soon as he came up out of the water, he started pulling stuff out of his pockets and chunking them at me saying "You stupid b*tch! Why didn't you take the stuff out that would get ruined? This is all your fault!" This was in front of about 60 people including kids and including mine who was standing right beside me. He was drunk, but wouldn't let me drive home. So I prayed all the way home that God would keep us safe. He did and I left the next day.

So, you see, I was better off taking my chances on my own than showing my son that a marriage is supposed to be filled with drunk driving, fighting, screaming, throwning things and crying. And, yes, I was spineless, but not so spineless that I wouldn't protect my son.

In my opinion, the purpose of having a mate is someone that compliments you. Someone that polishes your rough edges and you polish theirs. Someone that is strong where you are weak and someone that is weak where you are strong. Someone you can lean on when you need help and someone you can lift up when they are down. My BF did not change my personality, he compliments my personality so that I don't have to be spineless anymore. And he lets me speak my mind without making me be afraid of the outcome.

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imamommy

Kathline

So did I. However, I wasn't hung up on an ex and I didn't hate men. I also didn't spend all my time on the internet or on the computer. I think the internet is great place to meet people, although it takes more effort to weed out the bad ones and screen the good ones, but you definitely can meet many more people than IRL. I think I wrote 'gardenweb' because it's a forum of mostly women and most are married already. I meant a combination of those things. I think everyone spends time on the computer, at school, work and at home. It's probably rare to not have a computer so lots could make the argument they are on the computer a lot and met a great guy.

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pseudo_mom

I met mine at the market .... his kids were acting up and I said something stupid like ... "you have some badass kids there" and he said do you think you could do any better of course I am supermom!!

Ah the MAGIC!!

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ceph

Good for you, Ashley!
It's scary to leave a "secure" abusive relationship. I'm proud of that you had the courage to do it!

And, I think you hit the nail on the head about a perfect match being someone who compliments you by allowing you to be comfortable with yourself, and helping you be a better person by "filling in your gaps".

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imamommy

That was the headline of my husband's ad. I teased him on our first date and kept giving him compliments. I knew what he meant on his ad and the one line that stuck out at me was "I have a daughter. I am not looking for a mother for her, she has a good one." I knew after our first date, he was the one. I wasn't wrong.

Someone else pointed out something the other day about guys blindly believing everything their ex tells them. That's exactly what happened with mine. She was convincing because she had me believing she was mother of the year. There was a time I was envious of her mothering. Then, either she changed drastically (which I don't believe a good parent can become a bad parent unless they choose to) or her great mom facade faded when she was overtaken with jealousy at DH marrying me. I still won't ever understand how she can go from great mom to mom that would rather leave her kids behind for a guy she's known for two or three weeks. NEVER.

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doodleboo

I can't say that I believe that ANY of us are wasting our lives. Your life is only what you make of it.

I will say that I still believe it is deffinatly not a good idea to stay married souly "for the kids". I honestly feel that the emotions involved (or lack there of) would inevitably trickle down and have a negative affect on the children. Often parents make better parents when they are not together.

In the case of questionable parenting and the visitation....depending on how "questionable" it is maybe that parent shouldn't HAVE visitation. I am aware that kids crave the involvement of both parents in their lives but there are cases where just because they WANT it doesnt mean it is good for them.

It's a different story if the parents are both loving, responsible parents but just have different parenting techniques.....that will just have to be gotten over. At least if they arn't living together the child won't have to witness the fights over the differences. If they relationship SUCKS you can only fake it for so long. Children are not stupid. The seperation can be gotten over but years and years of bearing witness to your parents at each others throats....that's another story. Plus these parents will just divorce when the kids move out. Even though they are grown it still is going to affect them so whats the point in delaying the inevitable?

This doesn't seem to happen very often anyway. Once a party in the marriage decides it's deffinatly over....it's over. They typically don't spend much time getting general consensuses'.

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imamommy

KKNY

"Ima, with all due respect, some of us were just as selective in chosing the father of our first child(ren). I know you have pulled yourself up, and I do commend you for that."

Thank you very much but I don't need you to commend me. I didn't choose the father of one of my children. And I didn't stay with the one that was a cheater for 20+ years. WITH ALL DUE RESPECT.

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ashley1979

OMG, Imamommy! That's EXACTLY how I feel/felt about my BF X! I was so jealous of her! Jealous of her money, her house, her devotion to her daughter. And then all that started sloughing off. It's amazing how that changed! She manipulates FSD so that SHE benefits, not FSD. So sad! Here's a story for you:

She baked cupcakes for a picnic. Really fancy cupcakes that cost more than buying some from a store. She was late picking up FSD from my BF's house. On the way to the picnic, she told FSD that if they were late, and all the cupcakes didn't get eaten that FSD would have to pay her the money for the cupcakes out of her savings account. She was 10! And it wasn't her idea to make the cupcakes anyway. So FSD starts crying and apologizing. For what? She didn't do anything wrong. Then she made FSD call my BF and tell him that she couldn't come back over because she was in trouble for making them late. That's basically when I realized that it was all about her and her agenda and she doesn't really care about her daughter as much as I thought. It's all about appearances with her.

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finedreams

ima, tos' replies are usally one-two liners. it probably takes her a minute or so. she never types much.

and if we follow your logic, when you do find a great man, you can spend hours on the internet typing long messsages? it does not make any sense. i think precisely when you (hypthetical) do have a family, you should be devoting your time to them not public forums.

it might be hard to meet a guy sitting at the computer but it also is tough to raise children doing that.

and honestly why do we assume that women have to be looking for a guy? maybe people spend time doing whatever simply because they do not want to find no one? frankly some women don't even like men.lol

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imamommy

"ima, tos' replies are usally one-two liners. it probably takes her a minute or so. she never types much.

and if we follow your logic, when you do find a great man, you can spend hours on the internet typing long messsages? it does not make any sense. i think precisely when you (hypthetical) do have a family, you should be devoting your time to them not public forums."

Following your logic, nobody should be here. It is a step family forum and most of the people here have families. I guess we are all bad people that should not be here. Although most of us are here for support and advice for our families, not here to cut each other down. I could be wrong about others, but for me, the time I spend on here is when my husband is at work & my SD is at school. I also come on during the evenings when my kids are in bed and my husband is watching TV here next to me. That's when I read him some of the posts here, we talk, he tells me his points of view.

"it might be hard to meet a guy sitting at the computer but it also is tough to raise children doing that."

That's true. Nobody should ignore their kids to spend time on gardenweb or on the computer in general. Again, most of the time I spend on the computer, I am at my desk working and keep the window open so sometimes I am here all day doing paperwork. Other days, I'm out working & driving around serving people. Of course, I do have my laptop in the car where I can go online and mess around when I am staking out a house. Keeps me from getting bored. But, my schedule revolves around my step daughter. Too bad her mom's doesn't.

"and honestly why do we assume that women have to be looking for a guy? maybe people spend time doing whatever simply because they do not want to find no one? frankly some women don't even like men.lol"

This is what I wrote:

"When I was single, I loved my life. I wasn't unhappy being single, but I also know that I wanted to share my life with someone and while I enjoyed being alone, I didn't want to grow old alone. I guess for some people, that is fine with them and that's what they want, I'm only talking about me."

I didn't say everyone needs to find someone. The question posed earlier from TOS was "And how did you know that he was going to see ANY relationship, much less a "functional" one" and I answered it for me, nobody else. It was only how I feel about it. Not saying I'm right or wrong.

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kkny

Ima, I didnt stay with a cheater for 20 years either (as far as I know). Some things became clearer in the last year, and after seperation.

And yes I am very sorry about the one, but as I recall you had 3 children at an early age.

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imamommy

"Ima, I didnt stay with a cheater for 20 years either (as far as I know)"

I never said you did. All I said was that I didn't. At least at the young age of 21, I didn't feel the need to stay with a guy when I saw that he had the capacity to cheat on me. It probably made my life harder because he wanted to marry me. He probably would have stayed married to me if I had been desperate enough to put up with him. I think that even if I made a poor choice in allowing myself to get pregnant, I was wise enough to know he wasn't the kind of guy I wanted to be around, once I learned he cheated (which was after I was pregnant). I don't consider that I 'pulled myself up'. My biggest hurdles in life as a single mother have been financial so in that sense, I have worked my way up and doing quite well now. The choices I made as a teenager and young adult have more to do with reacting to my situation (rebellion & dealing with my emotions that related to dealing with an alcoholic mother and not realizing how my actions would impact the rest of my life).

"you had 3 children at an early age."

Yes, I did. Am I the first to do that or am I being judged for the way it happened? You don't know everything about me so you can't judge me. I could easily say that your husband has always had the capacity to cheat but just didn't act on it until he met his GF. That would mean he's always been a cheater in his moral fiber. There are guys out there that would never cheat on a woman.

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justnotmartha

wow. Take a couple days off and come back to WW3.

Okay - we all know tensions can run high between some members. There are certain people here that have views we personally don't support. There are others we feel *close* to. What ever the case may be, this constant post picking apart is getting so old. We need to stop making the assumptions that generalizations are directed at us personally. We each b!tch about posters being negative, but yet look to each post for the negativity to feed off of. Enough! If I wanted to go back to high school I'd by a back pack and get on the bus!

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theotherside

Serenity,

Thank you for your kind post.

doodleboo et al.,

I don't know why so many people assume that divorce is preceded by the parents "being at each other's throats," or that anyone was "faking" anything. Every one of my kids (except for the one who couldn't talk yet) said that they had absolutely NO idea that their parents might divorce. It came as a complete shock to them. My exH himself said that a few months earlier he was not considering divorce.

ima,

It is not really a surprise to me that your SD's mother used to be a much better parent. Someone I know once said, about a mutual acquaintance, that she was a great mother except when she had a man in her bed. Unfortunately, this is true of far too many people, of both sexes.

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justnotmartha

"that she was a great mother except when she had a man in her bed."

I believe this can, unfortunately, be very true. There are some parents who can not keep their priorities straight when in a relationship and allow it to consume them. In the case of my SD's mom, I believe the underlying problem to be her need to be needed. It seems that she finds her validation, or worth if you will, in being part of a couple. If the couple isn't she and a man, it's she and her daughter. Whoever that 'partner' might be was the *most important* thing in her world. With each new relationship the priority would shift; man/daughter/man/daughter.

Funny, I guess if you think about it the priority was the same - her. The men and the daughter took 2nd and 3rd.

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imamommy

theotherside

She wasn't a much better parent before she had a boyfriend. She has always been flaky and inconsistent since I knew her. At first, she talked a lot about being involved at SD's school and PTA blah blah blah. She talked herself up a lot and there was no reason to not believe her. She was being friendly with me and seemed to be doing everything she claimed with her daughter and I was just dating DH at the time so I didn't get very involved in what was going on with her. She told DH that she was PTA president for three years. He just believed her, he had no reason to doubt it. He never went to PTA meetings because he was at work. He went to school functions in the evenings and he probably should have been more involved but missing PTA meetings isn't the end of the world. Especially, when he thought BM was involved in it.

Then we go to a function and they are giving out awards to all PTA board members and BM is sitting in the audience. They introduce the PTA President (and it's not her) and she is not even on the board. I guess she decided that since she paid her PTA membership dues, she can call herself President to DH as long as she didn't think he'd find out. That's only one example. There were other things that didn't sound right to me that DH didn't pay much attention to. He found out that she was leaving the kids home alone, keeping them out late to hang out with her friends, signed them up for taekwondo because she was interested in dating guys that went there (instructors) and fooled around with a couple of them, but never 'dated' them. I didn't bother to look into these things until she dragged me into it by accusing me of not liking her, then being mean to her daughter and constantly complaining about me and my kids. I didn't have to dig very deep (because I know the ins & outs of getting information) to find out that most of what she had told DH wasn't true. It was only after she met this new guy that she has been openly doing stupid things that shock us, even though nothing should surprise us anymore, like lying that she's sick to spend time with her BF's kids. If I think back to when we were dating, she did tell DH she was sick several times and had him keep SD longer than usual. It makes me wonder if she wasn't lying.

I wouldn't blame her flaking on her new boyfriend, there were many problems before she met him, which is why DH wanted SD to come live with us during their custody battle. He was happy to have 50/50 time share when he thought she was a great mom. When she started showing the side that she kept hidden, then he got concerned. One of the first things that struck me as odd is how she always wanted to cut her weeks short, sending SD over to him before her week was up. She never wanted to make up time and more than a few times, she acted like it was an inconvenience to take her own daughter. That was the first clue to me that she wasn't such a great mom. Maybe it is a difference of opinion, but I can't imagine a mom acting like that. I'm sure some do and I don't doubt they love their children although I wonder sometimes the level of love they have.

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theotherside

"I didn't bother to look into these things until she dragged me into it by accusing me of not liking her, then being mean to her daughter and constantly complaining about me and my kids."

None of these things forced you to search out (or invent, which is likely her point of view) negative information about her. None of the negative things you mentioned are verifiable, except whether she was president of the PTA - most of what you said comes under the heading of gossip and innuendo. As to the PTA, how do you know she hadn't been president of the PTA the previous year - typically the term is one year? How did you find out all this information? Did you query people who knew her? Obviously you can't find out her reasons for signing her daughter up for Taekwondo by looking it up on the Internet. For that matter, why do you care what her motivation was? You have mentioned the Taekwondo thing at least a couple of dozen times. Why is she taking up so much space in your head?

"I am not looking for a mother for her, she has a good one."

I think your H was in a better position to judge her mothering abilities than you are, since he lived with her, and if she changed after they separated, that is consistent with my comment in the above post.

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finedreams

it is quite possible that you do type your posts while doing some other paperwork or while your kids are at school etc. But then TOS types her posts while all single great men are working so she could not possibly be chasing them. plus like i said her posts are usually very quick so it can hardly be called spending all of her time...etc. so you can't be judging what others do if you are doing exactly same thing or even more than that!

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colleen777

I agree with TOS on this one. Why are you digging up all this negative information about your stepdaughter's mother?

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finedreams

who cares about PTA. i never attedned one metting and DD grew up very well adjusted. she used to joke that thank you mom for not being in PTA, those are all moms who have no life. lol exagerration of course. it seems that BM has to be on defensive all the time so she maybe invents stuff so you guys leave her alone and don't accuse her of things. people sometimes lie so others just leave them alone.

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finedreams

how can you know who BM was screwing with and who she was not "dating". How can one know such intimate info about anyone and why would anyone care. and how can one know true motives behind one's actions and why would anyone care? this is unbelivable. it is hardly appropriate.

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gigglemonster

Imamommy, I'm going to try to say this gently, but none of what you stated above is any of your business. Additionally, there is no way that anyone can verify someone else's motives and the motives and reasons you are applying to BM have nothing to do with you or DH or SD.

It sounds to me that you don't like the woman and have indulged in gossip and hearsay to justify your and DH's position on how she is such a bad mom.

Where is the real evidence? Why are you involved in her personal life? Does it matter that she fooled around with a couple guys but didn't date any? You defend your past and said you've grown, but then you are judging this woman under a microscope when it is not your place/right nor does it even have any bearing on what kind of a mother she is to SD.

I have kind of resisted saying anything to you, but I will say now that the tone and content of your posts related to BM are heated, full of vitrole, frustration and have an air of your are more worthy and that you are entitled to the judgements and accusations you've made against her without proof. IMO, you've become enmeshed in the situation and have lost sight of reality and balance. In all gentleness, I urge you to back off -- let the parents be the parents, support your spouse and maybe seek out some counseling to deal with this.

I don't mean to come off as harsh and I hope you can take my post as a cyber friend trying to help out another cyber friend.

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dirt_yfingernails

Giggles, just get over it. For gosh sakes, Ima is a decent person, and even KK and TOS are, I suspect. There are some on this forum that just like to sling barbs and rude comments that are not called for. Ima doesn't like them and neither do I.

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gigglemonster

Get over what? That I have an opinion on a message board. How about you get over my opinion? That'll solve that.

No one said Ima is not a decent person. My post is not a bash in anyway, it is my opinion. Ima is opining on what a bad mother SD's mom is using gossip and hearsay.

In any case dirtyfingernails, I don't need you or anyone to sign off on what I say. If you feel a connection with Ima battling internet bullies, good for you! Just keep in mind that if you are going to get offended about what someone posts in response to you then you might want to think again about posting. But, you are offended that I posted in response to Ima -- so what was your point? I'm pretty sure Ima can defend herself (although my post wasn't made to make her defend herself.

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imamommy

It is my husband's business. It was affecting his daughter and he was getting frustrated and not understanding why his daughter was behaving the way she was. At 6 years old, she was grabbing her 9 year old cousins (boy) crotch and 'flirting' with him. She even invited him to sleep with her in our trailer on a trip and she said it in a come hither way. Her cousin was so upset that he didn't talk to her the rest of the trip. After that, he'd stay away from her and she would chase him and try to always sit by him. She had a crush on him and everyone thought it was disturbing. She had no idea about boundaries and had to be told several times that he's her cousin and you don't act that way with boys at her age, let alone her own cousin. She also did the same (had a crush) on every male nephew in my family. Most of them are teenagers and young 20's. We didn't think much of her 'crushes' but the grabbing crotch was a red flag to me. Later, she was found in her room with all her Barbie's naked and posing them in different sex positions. By that time, she was in counseling and the counselor talked to her about it. Before DH realized all this, he was just getting frustrated. He was assuming that BM was raising her exactly like him. When he said he was concerned about SD's behavior, BM told him she thinks she has ADHD and took her to a couple of doctors asking that she be put on medication. When she was told that SD does not have ADHD, she turned to me and said, 'guess it's time for a new doctor, this one sucks.' That was the only time I had gone with DH & BM to an appointment for SD. I was shocked because I'm a mother and I would want to try every possible solution before I would resort to putting my child on medications like that. She wanted to jump straight to meds. That was another red flag. After that, DH and I tried behavior modification at our house and BM looked for another doctor. Within a couple of months, SD was behaving very well for us but BM was still calling us and saying SD needs to be on medication, she is too out of control at her house. DH told her that she is fine at our house and told her what we were doing. She got mad and never did take SD to the doctor. She wanted us to pay for it and since DH said she was doing fine here, he wasn't going to pay for the doctor. He told BM she can take her herself. She never did. She started cutting her weeks short and we had her more and more.

Like everyone else here, there was a lot more that went on over the years and there just isn't enough time to write it all. I disagree that I have indulged in gossip and hearsay. I may be speculating about some of her motives, but her ads on the internet were pretty blunt. Some of what I know is from her posting it on the internet herself. Some is from court records.

I guess the only real evidence is pictures she posted on her myspace showing her with the men. Comments on her myspace. I googled her name and her online dating ads came up, including ones to partner swapping sites and one for a lesbian site, although I don't think she's a lesbian. I think she might be bi or into groups. When DH saw that, it clicked in his memory that she did ask him once if she could invite another girl to join them. He said no. She had been drinking and he thought it was the alcohol talking. It never occurred to him that she was into that lifestyle. They broke up by the time SD was about a year old. She was cheating on him but he didn't know much detail. As for her drinking, he says she did drink but kept it toned down while she was with him, probably because he doesn't drink at all. When they broke up, he kept a journal for a while. He says that he knew how she was with her older daughter when he was first dating her. BM would leave her daughter with her mom to go see him. When BM's mom would try to call her, BM would tell him she's not answering it. She knew her mom was calling to tell her to come take care of her daughter. DH doesn't get any brownie points for having a child with her but he was already thinking about breaking up with her when she told him she was pregnant. It wasn't a planned pregnancy, she told him she was on the pill. Yes, he screwed up and he'll admit that.

Obtaining information, whether anyone thinks it's my business or not, is not being involved in her personal life. I did a background on all guys I was going to date. In my line of work, I have access to investigators and tools to get information and many people here have said it's wise to investigate a potential partner when you have children. Then why isn't it wise to check up on the other parent? If they are doing nothing wrong, you'll find nothing. If they have a secret life that your kid's are exposed to, would you want to know? Most of what we've found out has an impact on his daughter and also explains the daughter's behavior. She was showing signs of being sexually abused, but in learning about her mom's lifestyle, it may be that she is modeling her mom's behavior. In understanding what her mom does in her life, it makes it easier to understand what SD does. and giggle, you are wrong if you think it doesn't have a bearing on what kind of mother she is to her daughters. They model her behavior. If she's having sex in front of them, it has a bearing. If she ignores them and leaves them alone to be with a man, it has a bearing on them. There may be nothing we can do to change or stop what BM does, but knowing what she does helps us understand SD's plight. Her counselor is also able to help her more if she has a better understanding of the two very different homes that SD lives in.

As far as my feelings toward BM. My primary motivation was to find out what happened with SD. I was convinced that SD had been molested. I'm still not convinced that she wasn't but I am not so adamant that she was. The things I've found out about her mom explain a lot. Do I hate BM? Not at all. I don't like her, but I don't need to. I do feel sorry for her at times, but I also feel anger at what I see her doing to her children. Not just SD, but her other sister. I am very frustrated with BM although I'm beginning to accept that she is not going to change. As for being more worthy or entitled to make judgments or accusations, all I have said is what I know or what I believe. I've never said I was a wonderful, perfect parent and she is crap. I don't agree with some of the things she does but she is the mom. DH nor I have ever told her how to raise her daughter, even though she has felt it's her right to tell us how to run our home. I appreciate the insight. I agree that it sounds like I am obsessed with her and at times, it feels like I am. I'm not sure counseling would help since the problem is in my head. See, I'd love to go about my days & weeks doing what I do and living my life. But, before we married, she made a habit of calling DH EVERY week when SD went back to her (when it was week on/week off) so it came to the point that every time SD went back, we'd be anticipating that call. Usually, she'd drill her about what she did at our house, then call to complain about me or my kids. After awhile, it creates anxiety. Now that she moved away and we have SD, she's made a habit of calling DH every Friday to change the pick up time when she knows that I am the one that is affected by it. It's to the point that I was having anxiety every Friday until 2pm. (when she is to pick up SD). I can't go work without worrying that she's going to call and say she can't pick up SD and if I'm not here to get her, SD will be left alone. So, every Friday I would leave my schedule open just in case. It puts me behind in my work and then if she doesn't call, it pisses me off that I waited around all morning 'just in case'. So, yeah, I let her occupy my head too much. She plays these games and I finally told her that I won't be here, it's her time and she needs to be there to get her daughter or make arrangement. I'm not going to be her arrangement. Then she started picking her up early and DH put a stop to it. Her response? She started accusing me of physically and psychologically abusing her daughter. Currently, for the past two or three weeks, when we come to get SD, BM makes us wait. She has been leaving SD at her BF's parents' house and when we get there, BM is home and calls her BF to bring SD over. We've let it go, say nothing, do nothing and it pisses off BM. Sure, in my mind I wonder why she would be home and her daughter is with BF's parents and I think she is wasting her time with her daughter, she should be spending it together but isn't. I have my opinion on that but nobody is telling her she has to do anything. We say NOTHING.

Part of why I vent on here is because we say nothing to her and we let her live her life. We wish she'd let us do the same. Perhaps, coming to a forum like this also allows her to occupy my head since some of the things I read here make me think of the situation with her. As for backing off and letting the parents be the parents, my DH gets nowhere with her and I let him deal with her 100%. I am a custodial step parent so I do take on some of the responsibility when DH is at work. BM doesn't call or inquire about her daughter during the week. She drills her or takes things SD might say and makes assumptions. She then makes accusations against me. None of the information BM gets is from us, she won't communicate much with DH, except to accuse him of what SD is telling her. It is very volatile right now because he is taking her to court for support and she is angry about that.

I do appreciate everyone's opinion. and theotherside, she was possibly PTA president one year, but she was claiming to be the current PTA president. The PTA website listed the last two or three years of minutes and she wasn't listed on anything there so she may have done it when SD was in Kindergarten or when her other daughter was younger, but she was caught in a lie. But, like I've said, she's a pathological liar. It doesn't really matter anyway. She isn't the person she was or said she was, so it's moot.

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gigglemonster

Imamommy, what she puts on her myspace, who she sleeps with, her favorite sexual position, her sexual orientation and her decision whether or not to be involved with someone is none of DH's business much less yours.

I still have not seen one shred of evidence that the child is being abused, which would entail the heavy investigation you are putting her through.

You are using your morals as a basis and justification to "investigate" bio mom. "She isn't the person she was or said she was, so it's moot." This does not matter Ima and it is not up to you to prove or disprove this.

I understand the aggravation of someone trying to control you through changing schedules and times, which is what BM is probably doing to get back at some of the antics you and DH have pulled investigating her. I did read where you called her BF's ex to discuss her, I'm sure those kind of things have gotten back to her whether you intended it to or not or whether you have said anything to her personally or not.

I think counseling would benefit you tremendously. I go to counseling to deal with anxiety and I also have OCD, sometimes it just helps to talk to someone unbiased and get it all out.

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imamommy

It's not a father's business that the mother is having sex in the same room with his daughter possibly watching? When he has to raise a little girl that is acting out sexually at age 6? Just this school year (3rd grade), she was written up for sitting on an 7th or 8th grade boy's lap on the bus and trying to kiss and hug him. Just a month ago, she was kissing another boy and talking about wanting to have sex with him. If that's not dad's business, then what is?

When she's accusing me of putting bruises on her child and being mentally cruel to her child, then I have a right to use any information I have that affects her credibility. She just recently put in court papers that I am abusive to her daughter. She is making false allegations and has no proof, but if I didn't have some of the information about her, she might be believed. Of course, she has also not done what any normal mother would do if they think their child is being abused, she hasn't called the authorities or tried to take DH to court for custody. She is only saying those things because he is asking her to support her child and her response is that we are abusing the child. I agree with you. I don't see evidence of the child being abused, although she has mysteriously become very clumsy at BM's house. She does come back with bruises since BM started allegations that I was physically abusing SD. It would be very sad and disgusting if she is putting bruises on her child and documenting it so she has 'proof' to say I did it. That would be sick. I'm not going to sit around and wait to have to defend myself. Everything I have found out about her has helped in dealing with her and much of this behavior started before anything was ever investigated. Her actions and things she said in response to DH's concerns over their daughter is what sparked him to want to find out more.

When you know the entire story giggle, then you can make an informed opinion. Like I said, it's impossible for anyone to write about every incident and detail of things that have happened to lead up to where we are now. I understand your stance based on the limited information you have. You are entitled to your opinion and I appreciate your input. I'll give it all the consideration it deserves. Good luck in counseling with your problems.

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finedreams

why do you google her name? it really does not matter what intimate life she has and if she posts on dating sites as lesbian. so what? her not picking kids on time is relevant but all this is not. searching for her private life facts or calling her BF's ex and all that is not only irrelevant, it is inappropriate, it is kind of unhealthy obsession over her life. almost stalking. of course BM knows about that and of course she is upset. and her child probably knows that you search facts about BM...it is hurtful to a child. please back off for kid's sake.

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gigglemonster

Imamommy, I don't think anyone needs the "full" story to realize that going into this woman's personal intimate life and then posting it again on the internet is clearly inappropriate and just plain catty. It does not signal a SM that is concerned for her SD's safety and doing it just for the good of SD, it is trying to prove something to yourself and carry on an unhealthy obsession via an internet crowd.

How would you even know that BM was having sex with BF in the same room as SD? Even if true, it is beyone reasoning how you would know this or even obtain this information.

DH needs to take care of his child, there is no arguments about anyone denying that. Yes, some of those behaviors are inappropriate. But you know what, they can come from anywhere. Watching too much tv, daycare, watching an older sibling with a gf/bf.

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imamommy

"How would you even know that BM was having sex with BF in the same room as SD?"

She told us when she was found posing her Barbie's in sex positions. She also told her counselor. It would have been when she was about four or five and her sister was seven or eight. (also in the same room)

finedreams, I don't care what she does with her personal life or who she dates or what she does when she dates, but when SD is acting out sexually at a young age, then knowing that mom does these things explains a lot. If SD is acting out because that is what she is seeing and exposed to, then it becomes relevant. If your exhusband had sex with his GF or wife in front of your DD when she was 5 and he was into a lifestyle of parties and partner swapping and doing that with your DD there, would that have been your business? SD talks about her mom having 'parties'. That could mean a backyard BBQ or it could be orgy. Who knows but it is a concern when SD is talking about having sex at 8 years old. If knowing her mom's lifestyle can help us understand her behavior, then what is the problem? If your only argument is that I "investigated" her, well I investigated my husband. I investigated other people I've dated. Why is it okay to investigate a potential BF but it's not okay to investigate the other parent that may be doing things you didn't know about? They were never married and their relationship was less than two years. He obviously dropped the ball in finding out more about her before he had a child with her, but he has every right to know the kind of person that is his co-parent. She has every right to investigate me and find out about my past. She has every right to investigate my BF. She should also investigate her BF. I did and found he had a drinking problem but he's been sober for a few years now. She should know what kind of guy she is bringing around her child. As a parent, she not only has that right, she should have an obligation.

There are parents out there that molest their own children. Maybe with a little background check, a parent would find out the other parent has a history and they can protect their child. There's no reason to care unless someone has something to hide.

If she wants to have orgy parties when SD is here and SD is not exposed to it, that's her business. When SD is acting out and we know she has that lifestyle, then it's not unreasonable to assume mom's lifestyle may have something to do with it.

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finedreams

SD spends way more time in your house (according to you) so it is possibly safe to asume that her behavior is more likely learned in your household and your family's lifestyle not BM's (if we believe she rarely goes to moms). so which one is it, she learns bad stuff from BM because she is mainly there? or she is with you and DH and your kids and learns all that at home? unbelivable. and i bet you when you accuse BM of all deadly sins, she says that SD learns all that bad stuff from your teenage kids and you. no wonder there is so much drama. unbelivable. and poor kid stuck in the middle.

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theotherside

In my state, a criminal background check is required to volunteer at the schools, with girl scouts/boy scouts/4-H etc., to teach, or to work with children in a number of capacities. However, this is a CRIMINAL background check. You can be hired to work with children in any capacity after far less "investigation" than what imamommy has done on her stepdaughter's mother.

It is one thing to make sure your boyfriend does not have a criminal record, is really divorced, or has not actually been married seven times, but I would think most boyfriends would not remain in that role very long if their girlfriends started trying to dig up dirt by talking to their neighbors, their coworkers, ex-wives of their friends, etc.

What is really worrisome is that, because imamommy has shared so much personal information on her Facebook page to which there is a link on this forum, sooner or later someone who knows imamommy IRL will find this forum (the six degrees of separation concept could apply here) and that could cause irreparable harm and embarrassment to the biological mother and, more importantly, the child.

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ceph

Oh for Pete's sake!
Yes, now that Ima's SD is 9 she spends more time with them. I believe that began when SD was 8, or maybe it was late 7. At age 4, her mom had her most of the time. The Barbies in sexual poses incident was when SD was 4 or 5.

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ceph

I know it's a character reversal from Ima's situation, but I wouldn't think it was too out of line if A__ started acting really strangely and BM did some sort of intense background check on me. I might be a little annoyed, but I can see where she might be coming from - strange behavior comes from somewhere, and IMO if anyone who loves a child that's a part of their life (biochildren, N&Ns, stepchildren, neighbour's child, you name it) sees alarming behavior, they should be trying to figure out what's causing it.
I don't recall for sure - Ima, did you talk to DH about your investigation before you did it? If you did, then I think you did just what any concerned person should. If you didn't, then you should have talked to DH first, but the principle of the investigation is fine.

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kathline

You know,

There is absolutely no purpose to continuing to knock what the other people on here do, or dont do. Each of us does things that make sense to us, based on our past experiences, current situation, upbringing,..a whole slew of factors.

When I look at Ima, I think, yes, she jumps to conclusions a lot, and the things she claims BM does, may have some basis, or may not, or maybe she is giving them the wrong interpretation.

I know I have said before, if you ask BOTH people from a divorced couple, you are likely to get two totally different stories about what happened in the marriage, how the kids are being raised wrong, etc etc.

In ima;s situation, some of her conclusions seem to jump immediately to the worst possible explanation. I am sure if you asked bm, you would get a totally different side of it. In fact, we know this is true just from some of the things IMA posts.

Imagine we have two posters on here. Ima posts that...

BM had sex in front of the daughter
BM gave the kid some kind of narcotic as a relaxer
scrapes on knees are from sliding behind a truck
tuna and ice cream made the girl sick

and other things

NOw, for just one minute, imagine BM was also on this forum, but we didnt know it was the BM in ima's life. We would hear things like...

STepmoms 21 year old scares daughter with movies all night long
STepmoms other teen son has threatned to kill dd with a knife
STepmom yells at dd if she is scared in the night

And ,many other things.

We would be advising BM to get that horrible stepmom out of the kids life, wouldnt we?

We are all over BM cuz of what IMA says, but I would hazard a guess that if BM were a poster, we would be all over the stepmom because of what BM said.

In divorce, the parents often seem to try to find a way to blame bad behaviour on the other parents upbringing of the child. I wish I had a loonie for every time I have read on here that my stepchild is being rude, inconsiderate, lazy, blah blah, and its OBVIOUSLY the fault of the BM, or the SM, or th Dad.

Nothing is that obvious, and its rarely any one persons fault.

I think IMa's sd enjoys the power play between ima and her husband and her BM, and I think ima and her hubby and BM all fall into that power play quite willingly. I dont think any of the three of them really want it to stop. Its their way of dealing with each other.

I also think Imas SD fakes a lot of the scared, sick, etc, to get attention. Nothing wrong with needing attention, but she knows her BM is distant , and she probably knows that IMA doesnt really think she is good enough - or at least she believes that. She is looking for sympathy.

I wonder, Ima, have you considered the idea tht BM really DOES believe your son threatened her with a knife and that you yell at the girl for disturbing you, because SD TOLD her mother that?

I really think you both are being played.
Arent you glad it really doesnt matter what I think?

The truth is that we always see things through the filter of our own fears, and experiencs, and that both sides probably have some validity to what they think, and both sides probably have a whole lot of fears that are not based on anything real.

I guess also, that I am considering the best possible motive for some of the things that others say about their former partners spouse...that the things said are based on the posters own experiences, fears and interpretations. I also think it can be true that the motives are less clear, and that some people enjoy confrontation, get an emotional payoff from putting down the other parent, have an inappropriate fascination with the details of other peoples lives, and refuse to see any point but their own.

BUt, as has been pointed out, none of us are perfect. we all have our own baggage to carry .

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imamommy

Kathline, that was a great post and very insightful. I agree with just about all of it. Do I believe BM really believes her daughter was threatened? All I can say to that is that her actions say no. If my child were being threatened and I felt my child was being yelled at by stepmom and if I really cared, I would have done something about it. I wouldn't wait two weeks or three weeks and only mention it when I didn't get my way. i would have my ex in court immediately asking for an emergency protection order.

Yes, I completely agree that SD is playing this to the hilt. BM plays right along with her and while I may b*tch and moan about her here, I don't react or say a word to or about BM. That doesn't mean they don't know how I feel, I'm probably not that good an actress. Body language may say it all, but I don't play BM's game. If any of the accusations BM has made toward me were true, then yes I agree, I would be a horrible person. But, you are a mother. Would you do anything if your child said those things to you? If your child said stepmom's kids were mean to your child. Wouldn't you at the very least make a phone call to dad or send an email to find out what's going on?

Her actions speak louder than her words.

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doodleboo

TOS

Maybe your situation was a spaecial case but in all the divorce cases that I have heard of from the people involved (and considering the divorce rate thats half of my friends and family) the relationships hit the skids months and sometimes YEARS before the divorce took place.

Why in the world would someone decide all of the sudden they wanted a divorce? I'm sure it happens but my goodness, is there no connection in the marriage or what? How could you just drop someone out of the blue that you "love" for no reason? Makes no sense. Seems there'd have to be something going on there.

Even in the case of cheating. Happy people in good relaionships are not gonna just up and leave. I'm in no way making excuses for cheaters....not even for a nano-second. It just seems strange to me that so many people defend relationship's so heatedly when they ended in infidelity? It was NOT good if the man you were married to went looking to someone else. He was NOT a good man and the relationship was not stable.

Sorry...went a little off topic with the cheating thing there. I just can't understand the desperate attempt at validating relationships when the man was a cheating jerk.

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theotherside

I have seen it happen over and over, and the usual cause is mental illness or extreme stress. I am sure you are aware that the divorce rate in couples who lose a child or who have a child with a severe illness or disability is very, very high - somewhere around 90%. Are you saying that their marriages were any less stable than the average couple's, among whom the divorce rate is considerably lower? No, they aren't less stable, they are just subject to far more stress. Are you therefore claiming that 90% of marriages are not stable?

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kathline

Ima,

If my child told me things about his other parent, I would believe every word of it, and think the worst. I think every parent would.

Kids in divorced families surely know how to pit parents against each other.

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theotherside

In March, ima said,

"My DH's ex did the same thing, when he was involved in their custody battle, she kept complaining that she didn't want her daughter around me because I was doing 'mom' things and she is the mom. She also said that my son was a danger to her and he was threatening to kill her. (she perceived that my son was threatening her with a knife, because he was in the living room, cutting an apple with a knife to eat it and SD came into the living room and my son told her to go back to her room, so SD went back and told her mom my son threatened her with a knife)"

Although I think the mother should have done everything in her power to make sure that her daughter was protected from your son if she thought she was being threatened, it doesn't sound from your description that the child actually told her mother that your son threatened to KILL her. Perhaps she didn't pursue an immediate order because she (or her lawyer) didn't think she had enough evidence to get one. I personally don't understand why she would want her daughter to live in a household with a couple of unrelated teenage/early twenties boys. I was a bit uncomfortable when my children were young and visiting their father because his new wife's teenage boy was sometimes there - and at least my kids never went over there alone at that age.

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mrsmaddog

"I personally don't understand why she would want her daughter to live in a household with a couple of unrelated teenage/early twenties boys."

TOS- what exactly are you implying?

Unless there was reason to believe the teenaged boy was interested in a young child in an unhealthy way- you know what I mean- how would their being unrelated matter? If you just mean because they are older/bigger and therefore more capable of physical harm, then wouldn't that apply to teenaged girls,as well? If you meant what I think you did, it matters not how old they are, nor their gender, nor their relationship. Kids who hurt kids do it regardless.

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kkny

Mrs MD,

I dont think TOS said anything specifically re teh boys, but I agree, having a younger unrelated (which is what steps are) child with older ones would make me nervous. Read the papers. Abuse by steps does happen. The proximity makes it convenient.

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theotherside

Kkny is correct. The same thing applies to their friends' older brothers, neighbors, etc. Would you leave a daughter who was approaching puberty with an 18 year old boy, or a 15 year old boy, for that matter? Yes, I think some teenage boys would be interested in a child of nine or ten, many of whom are already going through puberty, and even more would be interested in a young teen. Would you leave a 13 year old alone with a 16 year old boy? Or a 14 year old with a 16 year old boy?

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kkny

I think to try an think that steps are the same as bios is just unrealistic. Just becuase parents get married, doesnt mean that children regard each other as family.

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doodleboo

TOS

I know all the statistics since I have looked them up out of curiosity. I am aware of the 90%. What I could never find was how many of ALL divorces where caused by death of child, sever disabilities, or adult mental illness. It's always the statistic for JUST those circumstances. I am sure that those numbers wouldn't account for a higher percentage than say inreconcilable differences, disillusion of marriage and infidelity. Would you at least agree with that?

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colleen777

What a sick direction this conversation has headed off into. TOS, I also am interested to know EXACTLY what you are insinuating.

My girls stayed home alone on occasion with their 6 years older stepbrother and I was never once afraid for them. I know if he were to read your comments he would break down in tears that there are strange people who would automatically think such nasty things about him. My God woman, give your head a shake.

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mrsmaddog

Thanks Colleen!
Tos-
I mean, so are you saying my DS15 is somehow a threat to my Niece aged 5, simply because he is male? Or DD11's friends?
If a child/teen is inclined to cause harm to a younger/weaker person, isn't that the point- NOT generalizing teenaged/unrelated boys?
And YES, KKNY, TOS did specifically say BOYS!
I will never leave my DD11 alone with my SDAUGHTER16 because she has proven herself dangerous, but have no fear of my SS15 or SS19, or SS22, or SS25. Now my SS21? I wouldn't leave him with my dog, but that's for different reasons!
In my experience, normal teenaged boys are interested in teenaged girls, or grown women.
It is pretty sick to lump all males into a predator/p3dophile category!
Another thought- related or not, teenagers should not be having s3x in the house where any younger children will be exposed. (Nor anywhere IMO, but that's a different topic!)

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ceph

If we're villainizing all unrelated males, I guess male teachers, uncles by marriage, friends' dads, male coaches and stepdads are all p3dophiles too.
It's important to be cautious, but you can't live your life thinking everyone wants to molest your child.

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theotherside

Yes, it is important to be cautious, and that includes not leaving your child alone for any extended period of time with any adult or teenage males that you don't know very well - including coaches, and male teachers, etc. No male coach/teacher/scout leader with half a brain would allow himself to be alone with any unrelated child. My daughter's martial arts instructors give private lessons, and a caretaker is required to stay with the child for liability reasons.

It doesn't matter if YOUR particular teenage boy can be trusted with a young girl. Would any of you actually leave your young daughter or son with an 18 year old you had never met, say a friend of a friend? Or a friend of a friend of your ex?

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theotherside

doodleboo,

I don't understand what you are asking.

"I am sure that those numbers wouldn't account for a higher percentage than say inreconcilable differences, disillusion of marriage and infidelity."

Death of a child, severe disabilities, and adult mental illness are factors that lead to divorce, not grounds for divorce. (I think mental illness is, but that refers to the mental illness of the defendant, not the person filing for divorce). Infidelity and irreconcilable differences are grounds for divorce, but "dissolution of marriage" is just another term for divorce. People don't file for divorce on the grounds of severe disability of a child. They may, however, fall apart under the stress, which can lead to infidelity, drug or alcohol abuse, or physical abuse, etc. Are you asking whether I think that the majority of divorces which are filed on the grounds of infidelity or irreconcilable differences do not involve death or severe disability of a child, or mental illness? If we are talking about long-term marriages, then no, I do not agree. I think the vast majority of them do involve depression or other forms of mental illness, and there are a number of psychiatrists who would agree.

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mrsmaddog

Tos, we were not talking about a complete stranger, but a stepbrother,no?

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doodleboo

TOS

That is what I was asking exactly. How many divorces are actually caused by death of child exc.exc. I think the mental illness being the main cause is horse hockey as well. If there is really THAT many mentally disturbed people walking the face of this planet I'm locking my doors and staying in the house.

Also why if mental illness is the major cause of divorce do these people not get back together after treatment? If it is a chemical imbalance wouldn't meds and counseling help level this person off thus ending the problem and making it so the marriage can continue? I mean are you insinuating that he must of been CRAZY for leaving you?

This is not a personal attack. I'm just trying to understand where you are coming from. It is just very intersting that some people don't think marriages can just end because the love from one side has diminished. That's what happened in my first marriage....the love just left. There was no hate or ill feelings but no love. It was time to go.

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theotherside

No, I don't believe long-term marriages end because "the love just left." The chemical changes in the brain that produce the high characteristic of the newly "in-love" do not typically last more than a couple of years, and when that is gone, sometimes there is nothing else left - but that does not explain divorces after twenty or thirty years.

People who suffer from depression are not "crazy," and you don't need to "lock your doors." That is not an accurate depiction of the mentally ill. Only a tiny percentage of the mentally ill are dangerous. About 1 in six people are significantly depressed at some point during their life. That means that the probability that neither partner in a couple will be depressed at some point in their life is 25/36, or 11/36 of couples, almost a third, will have at least one partner suffer from depression at some point. The chance of someone suffering from depression during the marriage is actually pretty high.

A large percentage of people who suffer from depression go undiagnosed. Not everyone who is diagnosed undergoes treatment. Some of the people who receive treatment do not respond, or have unacceptable side effects from the medication.

And this is just depression. There are a number of other mental illnesses, any of which can affect marriages as well.

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theotherside

"Tos, we were not talking about a complete stranger, but a stepbrother,no?"

In many cases, the stepbrother IS a complete stranger to the mother of the child involved. I have never met any of my exH's wife's kids. I doubt if imamommy's SD's mother is extremely well-acquainted with her sons. Does ima's SD's father know his exW's BF's kids really well?

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kkny

I agree, my X has only met his SOs sons briefly. They are notcomplete strangers to him, but just about.

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doodleboo

I don't think everyone who divorces is going through a depression. I'm sorry. I think a strong 25-30 year marriage would be able to work through a depression spell. And again, how many of those that agree to undergo (and respond to) treatment return to their spouses? Not many.

I just wonder what the "mentally ill" ex spouses would say their reasons for leaving were. I seriously doubt most of them would say they were going through a depression. I'm betting it would be more along the lines of "we grew apart, we just got to where we fought all the time, he/she became more like a friend" exc.

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theotherside

"And again, how many of those that agree to undergo (and respond to) treatment return to their spouses? Not many."

I don't have numerical data on how many people remarry their original spouse, but I know people who have done so successfully. From what I have read, it isn't all that uncommon.

Do you have any references to back this statement up?

I actually know of quite a few people who have attributed their divorce to depression.

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mlly

I don't have numerical data on how many people remarry their original spouse, but I know people who have done so successfully. From what I have read, it isn't all that uncommon.

OH FOR THE LOVE OF GOD TOS HE IS NOT COMING BACK TO YOU HE HAS BEEN MARRIED TO SOME OTHER WOMAN FOR WHAT IS IT NOW? 9 YEARS?

Perception is reality and the bottom line is I'm sure his perception was and is entirely different from yours

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theotherside

Gee, I thought Doodleboo and I were having a theoretical discussion. How did my exH get dragged into it?

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kkny

Actually I know people who have divorced and then later reconciled. More likely in situations where the first marriage was long term, children, etc.

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doodleboo

KKNY

That's a one in ten chance at best. I know far more cases where the person married someone else and moved on completely than folks who eventually got back together. In fact....I know of no cases where the people got back together. At least not personaly. I'm sure it happens but not near as often as the other option.

TOS

I have no numerical evidence. Just personal cases I have heard of from friends and family who have been through divorce....the same as you. There is ALOT of them to gather information from too sadly enough.

As far as people contributing their divorce to depression...I know a few who say it as well but in the few cases where I have heard it it has been from the spouse who was left not the spouse who did the leaving. I would just be curious to hear the OTHER side of the story. I kindof doubt they'd say they left due to mental illness.

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theotherside

I think that would depend on whether their depression was ever treated. A huge percentage of men who are depressed never receive treatment (I believe I read that it is around eighty percent).

Actually, I think one in ten is pretty good, especially when you consider that the chance of an affair leading to a long-term marriage is only 3 in 100.

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doodleboo

I agree that affairs have short shelf lives relationship wise too.

When I said 1 in 10 I was being generous. When I discussed this topic with my husband he said in his case and alot of his male friends who have gone through divorces....the depression left when they left the women they were with. He admits he still has small bouts of it now and again but that I actually HELP HIM FEEL BETTER when I come home and he snaps out of it.

He said he has no desire to leave just because he feels down every now and then. I am his support ans his rock. That's how it's suppose to be. His ex was the opposite. She made him feel worse. Thus the reason he left her. Lifes too short to be with someone who doesn't bring out the best in you. This was a males perspective.

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kkny

Well doodle, my X is apparently taking trips with a new friend. FDs x is on his third.

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theotherside

Doodleboo,

That is easy to say when you have only been together a few years, and married a few months. Things may be very different in twenty years.

I don't quite understand the time line here. His children are four; you've been living together a few years - that would mean they were about 1 when you moved in together. In my state, and I think many, if not all, others, you can not divorce your wife while she is pregnant (not to mention that that is a really slimy thing to do). How young were his children when he left his wife? If you did not have an affair with him, and assuming you did not move in with him a couple of weeks after you met, he sure didn't must have jumped into a new relationship quickly. And as to his ex-wife making him "feel worse," one has to wonder if he expected her to be continually perky and upbeat while taking care of infant twins.

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justnotmartha

KKNY - seriously? Your ex is 'stepping out' on the pool girl?? Good stinkin' grief. Perhaps there is some solace in that though - obviously the issue lies within him.

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kkny

No, not solace.

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doodleboo

I don't know whats not to get about the timeline TOS. Not that it's really any of your business but the girls are going to be five in a few months. Jonathan left her many times but left for good when the girls were two. I met him a few months later. We become friends and started dating shortly after. I didn't move in with him untill the girls were three. At the time mom still had primary custody. We lived together for a year and roughly eight months and then got married a few months ago.

I assure you I have no reason to lie to you nuts about whether or not I was sleeping with him while he was still with his ex. Give me a break. While we are getting personal do you mind telling me why your husband left you. I am unaware of what went down there.

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doodleboo

TOS...you need to go back and read some of my posts. She is certified mentally ill as in has attemtpted suicide multiple times. The worst of which she blew out a lung with a double barrel shot gun at point blank range. She should of never of had kids at all.

Just as recently as Easter she OD'd on pills and couldn't get the girls for the egg hunt because she had been commited as a result. I assure you that Jonathan tried to do right for the kids and "make it work" but as I have said there comes a time where making it work is not only not doing the adults involved any good but the kids involved either.

She refused to get clean and get mental help and ultimatly it cost her her marriage and if she doesn't get her act together it's going to cost her her children as well.

Do not try to victimize this woman because she does a good enough job making herself the victim. Any hardships that she has had live through her adult life have been brought on by herself and her unwillingness to do what she needs to do to get well.

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doodleboo

TOS....the final draw was when he came on off the road to find she had moved another MAN INTO HIS HOUSE! It's the same man that wound up trying to choke her to death infront of the girls a few months back.

He asked me to make mention of that again. He doesn't want anyone thinking he's a scum back just because you can't handle how your marriage turned out. I really don't understand whats up with you woman. You have all of these opinions but as soon as someone disagrees with you you try to "expose them" as bad people. I assure you my intentions with my husband and his children have been nothing but honorable. I am raising two girls who arn't even mine (that I love dearly I might add) because their bio mother is a piece of S*** and you are trying to make me out to be a home wrecker....you have some nerve.

I can't imagine why your husband would leave you...you seem like SUCH a nice person.

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theotherside

I didn't say that you were a homewrecker - just that your husband must have very quickly jumped from one relationship to the next.

I originally asked about the time line because, in the introduction thread, you said,

"2nd and current marriage only a few months but we have been living together for a few years."

I personally would not consider less than two to be "a few years."

I am curious. You said in the other thread that the twins will be five in August. If you moved in with your now husband as soon as they turned three, then one year and eight months later would bring you to this April - but you said you got married a few months ago. April was just last month.

I can't say I understand how leaving one's mentally ill wife to raise two toddlers alone can possibly be good for the children. If you were to reverse the situation, and a mother left her children behind with a suicidal husband, even for a short time, I think a lot of people would ask why she didn't stay around to protect/supervise them until she was certain she would have full custody.

I have posted before about the murder of our young relative that precipitated my then husband's depression, followed quickly by his affair and desertion. He himself told me afterwards that as of a week or two prior to the murder, he was not planning to leave.

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imamommy

TOS, do you really have THAT much time that you go back to OLD posts and create timelines of what everybody says so you have something to challenge their credibility?

Well, perhaps you messed up on MY timeline. If you are so interested in why a mother would leave her young daughter in a home with two boys that are late teens/early 20's, well, first you'd have to ask her. It is obvious to me that she placed her new boyfriend as her top priority, above and beyond her daughter's safety if she really believes her daughter is in ANY danger. (well, even if her daughter isn't in any danger, she still chose to leave her girls to be with a guy she just met) Secondly, the "threat" she perceived from my son that involved a knife happened last summer, before the trial in August 2007 (it was brought up in the trial and the judge didn't believe her. My son was cutting up an apple and she said that because he was holding a knife when he told her to go back to her room, that SD felt threatened. He was sitting on the couch at least 20 feet away from her). She moved with her new boyfriend in September 2007 and gave us custody so she must not have been THAT concerned that my son was a threat to her daughter. She gave up custody knowing he lived here with us. She has also made a few accusations that we are abusing her daughter over the last few months, yet she has done absolutely NOTHING about any of it. The ONLY time she has even mentioned her 'accusations' is when DH won't do what she says. Her daughter's safety must not be a big concern to her. The ONLY time she has put any of it in writing to the court is in her response to modify child support. Then she didn't show up for the hearing where she could have voiced her worries and concerns and asked for temporary custody or some relief. She didn't. Again, you would have to ask her why her daughter isn't her top priority or why she hasn't done anything if she believes the things she's accusing us of. Makes no sense to me. Like I said, if it were my kid, I'd have done something by now... if I cared.

I also don't know what you are implying about unrelated males living with girls. Sounds perverted if you ask me. But, honestly probably brought up to be controversial, which I noticed it did create a stir. Congratulations. Good one.

Hope you had a good weekend...

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theotherside

Oh for Pete's sake - it is not an old post; it is right there on the first page. I went to look at it because I wanted to refresh my memory on whether she had been married a long time or not.

I questioned why she wasn't concerned about her daughter living with unrelated teenage/early twenties boys. I never said I thought she was mother of the year. I don't think she should have moved her daughter in with some guy she had just started dating, either.

When your daughter was in her early teens, would you have wanted her to live in a household with unrelated boys of your son's ages whom you did not know? Would you really have trusted boys you had never met, or had met once or twice? Would you even be comfortable with her living in a coed dorm, at 18? How about a coed apartment, which is becoming more common on college campuses? Based on things you have said, you sound pretty protective of your daughter (not that that is a bad thing), so I really doubt that you would be comfortable.

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colleen777

TOS, if you are so concerned about a teenage daughter spending time with an unrelated stepson, why wouldn't you go and meet those children? Get to know them. Or is it that you just want to desperately hold on to another BS reason why a child should be terribly afraid of being at Dad's house. You don't want it to work plain and simple and you will do everything in your passive aggressive style to make sure it doesn't. Your views are very common coming from jealous exes and for the most part thinking people can see right through them.

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doodleboo

TOS...it got to the point where she was so crazy he was on the verge of wanting to stomp her and he didn't want it coming to that with the girls present. Not only that but did you actuallt expect him to live there with the other man in the house??? He had to get out. You should know that custody cases take a loooong time. We are STILL fighting to get full custody of the kids even though bio mom has all kinds of evidence of instability stacked against her. He couldn't of just snatched them up and brought them with him. He had to move in with friends till he could get back on his feet. He has no living relatives to stay with. Where would the kids of stayed? At his bachelor friends house? There wasn't even a spare room for them. They would of been on the couch. He did the best he could do. He has them now which is what he has been working towards since I met him. I don't understand what you're getting at. Are you trying to make him look like a bad father now just because he dared to have an opinion against yours?

I will tell you he is the (not one of but THE) most hands on father I have ever known. This man raises his children alone. I help of course but the brunt falls on him. He is a wonderful guy and his kids love him very much and thats the only thing that matters when it all boils down, is it not?

I don't think I'm even going to try and justify myself to you anymore. I am very happy. I am married to a beautiful talented man. I have to step daughters who I love and they love me. They call me MOMMY. Go ahead and throw darts at me....I don't care. I NEVER told them to call me that. We all love each other. We have a baby on the way that we just found out about a few weeks ago. Go ahead and go check the post so you can give me the precise number of weeks....I don't keep up with crap like that. All I know is we are all very happy. We have a great family. You can't be happy for me because you are miserable and jaded. ALl you do is look under rocks for the negative. I am really sorry things didn't work out for you TOS. I hope you can move on one day. If it's been nine years I don't think he's coming home....

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colleen777

Maybe he will, maybe he won't. But if I were him I would be much more amenable to return to an EX if they were being decent to me and were also prepared to look at their fault in the marriage breakdown. If it were a control issue from one side, it would never happen.

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kkny

Colleen,

I think that TOS Xs wife wont even allow most of her children in her house. And I guess on this board only the wife is ever at fault.

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theotherside

doodleboo,

In my experience, "I won't attempt to justify myself" usually means more or less the same thing as "that's the story I'm going with."

Everything I have read indicates that if you want custody of your children, NEVER leave the marital home. If you have to leave, as in cases of physical abuse, you need to take the kids with you.

colleen,

Meeting her kids a few times would in no way provide enough information about their character, and I can't envision any way of getting to know them well when they live so far away. I have never allowed my children to stay alone with any unrelated teen or adult male, but fortunately that doesn't come up often because most responsible males wouldn't put themselves in such a position - teachers don't provide after school help with the door shut, etc., in this day and age.

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colleen777

But remember when you are talking about another person's child, that child is not a stranger, but their own child. So while you are busy putting out some very nasty insinuations, BE careful what you say.

And please don't me laugh kkny about only wife being to blame. And didn't I read somewhere that your EX is taking another woman on his trips now? What does that mean?

I guess IF it means he is stepping out on the TOW, you have just lost a huge amount of your moral ground. Unless of course you are going to go after the TOW of the TOW.

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theotherside

Huh? Everybody is somebody's child. Would anyone here really do something like hire a friend of a friend's 20 year old son to babysit their 11 year old daughter? He might be perfectly fine, and he is someone's child, but would any sensible parent take that chance?

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colleen777

What you talking about?

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ceph

Doodle, I don't think anyone else has any beefs with your relationship timeline. Don't worry about TOS and her crabbypants.
I can't say for sure what anyone else thinks, but I think your DH sounds like a fabulous dad, and that you've been a great Dad's GF, FSM and now SM.
IMO, your SDs' BM probably wants to be a good mom, but her mental health troubles prevent it. It's too bad for her daughters that their mom isn't capable of being there for them, but they have other great people who love them! It sounds like you and DH have done a good job letting them know they are loved, no matter what!

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theotherside

"But remember when you are talking about another person's child, that child is not a stranger, but their own child."

As I said, everyone, pedophile or saint, is someone's child.

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imamommy

I would assume that EVERY parent that loves their child is going to be diligent in making sure that the unrelated people that are around their children are not going to abuse their child, WHETHER THEY ARE THE MOTHER OR THE FATHER.

It sounds like a double standard to say that a mother has the right to decide who is in the father's house and if the mother doesn't want her daughter around the father's teenage stepson's, then the mother gets to decide the child shouldn't go there. But, that would be like my husband having a right to tell his daughter's mother that he isn't going to allow his daughter to visit her home because she lives with a man he doesn't really know and her boyfriend has two sons that are slightly older than his daughter. In fact, I would think the 10 and 12 year old boys in my stepdaughter's mom's house, would be more of a 'threat' to stepdaughter since she's 9 and boys are usually interested in girls around the same age. Only pedophile men are interested in 9 year old girls, so it would make more sense that the boyfriends' sons would pose more of an interest in my stepdaughters than my sons.

In that case, what should we do with stepdaughter? The choices are that

1. She lives with mom, along with mom's boyfriend (who was fired from his job for an internet porn addiction at work & barely avoided a sexual harassment suit) and his two sons (10 & 12) that are just a bit older than stepdaughter and his daughter that is 7... and assuming her other daughter 12 comes to live there.... and they share a house with no bedrooms, just a loft where mom & boyfriend sleep. The kids sleep where ever.

Or

2. She lives with dad, along with stepmom, stepsister18, a stepbrother19 that is hardly home and my oldest son21 moved out a few weeks ago so he isn't around her at all. She has her own room (as do the other kids), with a door & a lock so that if she feels that someone MIGHT bother her, she can keep her door locked.

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kkny

Colleen,

Excuse, me how did I loose moral ground? I did nothing wrong. And if he is treating TOW badly, I am certainly not to blame.

I think this is why these timeline questions are relevant. These seriel relationships, of going from one to the next, are OK for consenting adults, but then it is hard to figure out how to make it work for the children involved. Maybe once you make a break, the next gets easier. Who knows?

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barefoot_diva

Actually, my husbands first marriage DID end because of his depression, so that ends THAT argument for me right there.

A quick sidestep here  TOS is correct. Depression is a chemical imbalance of the brain, and in most cases cannot be correctly dealt with correctly without medication and/or intensive counselling.

In my husbandÂs case, his depression was both hereditary and as a result of long periods of stress.

Of course, it wasnÂt really helped by his ex-wifeÂs numerous affairs, her violent attacks on him (in front of their young children), her insistence of belittling and insulting him in public or her repeated passive aggressive manipulation that had him thinking he was going crazy anyway.

Boy, that divorce sure was the best medication he could ever have taken!

Is this the kind of depression that ends a marriage that youÂre talking about, TOS?

Fast forward to his second marriage (with his obviously superior and utterly gorgeous second wife  and it goes without saying that as the stepmother of his two divine children, IÂm also perfect in every way  duh!), and his prolonged battle with a bitter and angry ex wife (how DARE he move on with his life and find happiness with someone else?!?!), his depression reared its head again. And it wasnÂt pretty.

But hereÂs the difference  he had a wife who supported him, who gently loved and nurtured him, who took care of him, made sure he had enough rest and kept his stress levels to a minimum, who encouraged him to talk through his feelings and stroked and kissed his beautiful forehead when he felt at his darkest.

And funny enough  gee, as if by magic, he got through it and weÂre still together. Can you believe it? I mean, whaddya know? My husband suffered the same clinical depression caused by chemical imbalances in his brain that he suffered in his first marriage, only we didnÂt get divorced. Okay, I suppose it does help that this time round he wasnÂt in a miserable, unhappy marriage pretending to be happy when all along he was dying inside.

A man doesnÂt leave his marriage because he is ÂdepressedÂ. Depression isnÂt a Âone-off get out of jail free cardÂ. What he had before, for whatever reasons, didnÂt work for him. What he has now clearly does.

Ain't life a funny old thing ;)

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ceph

Ima reminds me of something here that I think we all can benefit from:
It's important to examine all homes and caregivers under the same lens.
We often problematize everything that happens at the other home(s) while glorifying what happens at our own. I'm not innocent of this, but I try to keep an open mind about the other homes.
It's easy to ignore the bad points about your own home, and focus on the bad points of the other home(s), but many of us meed to make a better effort about this.

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kkny

Like I say, its amazing how many perfect SMs there are here. Come back in 5 years. %s are YOU WILL BE THE NEW X.

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colleen777

From what I see you are a wonderful and involved mother to all of your children. Crappy pants TOS reached an all time low with her insinuations.

I would much rather be called a troll than have someone insinuate my son is going to or may molest one of my stepchildren. What a remarkable ---- she is.

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ceph

Barefoot, like previous posters who have said the same thing, is right.

In my case,
I have had some depression troubles here and there since I was about 18. Mine are typically in the winter (probably mild seasonal disorder) or when something else is wrong with my health.

My ex held it against me when I had a rough spell. He said I was being lazy or didn't love him etc etc. That was far from helpful and it caused huge problems in our relationship.

FDH has talked and listened, tried to help, picked up my slack, and most importantly, UNDERSTOOD that this was not my fault and only temporary. I'd be lying if I said he wasn't occasionally frustrated or that he was pleased that I hit a slump, but he's been a great help and it hasn't caused any problems in our relationship.

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barefoot_diva

Oh right, you're the other bitter one. Hi :)

Honey, I'm such a perfect stepmother and second wife that the people in my town put on a big parade for me every month. Balloons and everything. The Mayor even sends all the first wives of the town to me to kiss my sweet feet. Sure, they hate it, but at least they learn their place.

Don't be too amazed at how perfect I am. I know, it's hard and it must cause you many sleepless nights, and sometimes I must admit I do feel a little twinge of guilt at how I manage to sleep so well with all that 'ex wife' suffering in the world. But c'est la vie, huh?

I feel for you. Honestly I do. Never mind, you might be lucky enough to be invited to one of my monthly parades and join the lucky bitter first wives in their feet-kissing fun. I think you might even like it ;)

p.s. Sorry sweetie, I'm too busy counting the blessings in my perfect life to worry about silly things like percentages and BIG SCARY SHOUTY WRITING. That's for the 'little people' to worry about, not me ;)

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barefoot_diva

I completely understand what you are saying. I suffered from severe postnatal depression in my first marriage, and it was a world of difference when I had the same experience after our last child in this marriage.

My PND didn't break up my first marriage, but the way it was all handled was an INDICATION of the state of the marriage itself. Two completely different things.

You can get through pretty much anything if you have the right support in your relationship.

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imamommy

"You can get through pretty much anything if you have the right support in your relationship."

this is one of the wisest things I've read on this board. I'm glad you are no longer just lurking....

and love the parade idea... sounds like such fun!!!

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doodleboo

CEPH

Thank you. We are happy and I think that's what is causing the problem. Apparently there isn't any room for blended families who kid along on this blog. God forbid my husband and I love each other and the kids all adore me.

TOS

I'm not not justifying myself to you anymore in this case simply means I can't force you to believe the truth and frankly I don't care if you do or not because you are nothing to me.

I read all your replies to my husband and he said you sound bitter, bi-polar and desperate to make up your own reality. When others don't by into your reality you get angry. Some points you make seem valid but then you go way way way out on limbs to cover every possible gray area and you wind up sounding desperate. All your VALID points are forgotten and you turn into that crazy ex wife. Are you bi-polar? Do you have social disorders? He also said he knows your type....controlling, nagging and insecure.

I think he's right. Everything I have said is true. He did all he could do for the girls. He fought tooth and nail to get them and still is fighting. Can you say your ex would do that? Oh wait, but that's the new wifes fault not his. Please. The man was a dog looking for an excuse to bail on his marriage and now he uses his new wife as an excuse not to see his own kids. STOP PUTTING ALL THE BLAME ON THE TOW! There was faults in the marriage there was faults in your ex and there was faults in you or the marriage would of never of ended. It takes two to have an affair my dear and for all of his depression he sure got over it long enough to go crawling into some other womans bed. Did he cry the whole time he was having relations with this woman and think I am SOOOOO depressed. I think not.

I can admit that my first marriage wouldn't of ended had it been strong and we were meant for each other...I am woman enough to do that. Why can't you?

Bare Foot

You are a riot:) The best medicine for depression sometimes is to get out of cruddy relationships. That is exactly what my husband said.

P.S. I want to come to one of your parades

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imamommy

" * Posted by kathline (My Page) on
Sat, May 24, 08 at 0:04

Ima,

If my child told me things about his other parent, I would believe every word of it, and think the worst. I think every parent would.

Kids in divorced families surely know how to pit parents against each other."

I completely agree with you. My question however, was would you do anything about it? I think that parents should believe their children, but if your child is telling you they are being mistreated and you believe them, do you say or do something or just let it go until your ex doesn't give you your way and THEN bring it up... and still DO nothing but make an accusation?

There's no doubt in my mind that my SD is saying things to both sides. This weekend, she told her grandparents (DH's parents) things about me that aren't true and they came to me and talked to me right away to find out what's going on. They did what I think her mom should have done, they acted on it right away. Whether the things she is saying are true or not true, if the mom believes them or not, she should find out why her daughter is saying those things. That was my point. Instead, her mom doesn't say a word or do a thing, she waits until she doesn't get her way or my husband brings up a concern he has about their daughter and that's when BM decides she needs to make her accusations.

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imamommy

"In many cases, the stepbrother IS a complete stranger to the mother of the child involved. I have never met any of my exH's wife's kids. I doubt if imamommy's SD's mother is extremely well-acquainted with her sons. Does ima's SD's father know his exW's BF's kids really well?"

As I mentioned above, BM's BF has two son's 10 & 12. SD is 9. The first time SD was at her mom's BF's house where the BF's sons were there, BM let SD sleep on the bed in the loft with both boys. That was the very FIRST time SD met BF's sons. They WERE strangers.... but when DH told BM that he didn't think it was appropriate to let her BF's son's sleep on the same bed as his daughter (and he didn't even imply that anyone did anything wrong, just that he wasn't comfortable with that sleeping arrangement), BM's reaction was to accuse ME of putting bruises all over SD. Her answer had nothing to do with the issue at hand, she deflects the subject to something else and never addressed his concern. To this day, he has no idea where his daughter sleeps in relation to the BF's sons. All he can do is hope that BM is looking out for her daughter the way he looks out for her here. There's no way on Gods green earth that he would ever let one of my son's do any harm to his daughter. He has to trust that BM would do the same to protect her there. That is all divorced/unmarried parents CAN do.

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theotherside

"You can get through pretty much anything if you have the right support in your relationship."

So if your partner is severely clinically depressed and commits suicide, it must have been because he didn't have the "right support in your relationship?"

Claiming that the "right support" will guarantee anything is highly presumptuous, to say the least.

Claiming that just because a marriage survived one major episode of clinical depression, it will survive a second or third, is foolhardy.

ima,

"That is all divorced/unmarried parents CAN do"

This is one of the major downsides of divorce and remarriage/new relationships. Does your husband have absolute trust in his exW to keep their daughter safe - both from sexual predators and from other physical dangers? Certainly not, based on your posts. As soon as you divorce, a large portion of your ability to keep your kids safe, to raise them according to your beliefs, is lost to the court system, to an ex-spouse whom you may no longer trust, and to any new SO's that he or she may acquire.

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theotherside

Doodleboo,

It is interesting that you accuse me of getting angry, yet you are the one ranting.

My theory (not that it is original) is that a lot of people in second marriages are scared - scared that their second marriage is going to end, just as their first one did. Therefore they want to "prove" that their marriage is better, so it could never happen to them. Unfortunately, there are no guarantees. You could, in theory, be a perfect spouse and parent and yet your marriage could still end.

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imamommy

"This is one of the major downsides of divorce and remarriage/new relationships. Does your husband have absolute trust in his exW to keep their daughter safe - both from sexual predators and from other physical dangers? Certainly not, based on your posts. As soon as you divorce, a large portion of your ability to keep your kids safe, to raise them according to your beliefs, is lost to the court system, to an ex-spouse whom you may no longer trust, and to any new SO's that he or she may acquire."

FINALLY!!!! Something we agree on! (well, sort of)

The only thing that we may never agree on is that I think when you make a child with someone, whether they are married or not, you never have that right to be a sole decision maker, unless the child's other parent willingly leaves (as in my case) or dies, the other parent will have an equal right to raise their child as they want (unless a court says they don't). Even when couples stay married, the spouses may not agree on how their child is being raised by the other parent within the intact family. Surely, you don't think that in every intact family, the spouses completely agree on parenting and have exactly the same morals & beliefs. I'm sure there are many intact families that do and it's probably the best situation when the couple discusses those things before having children, but sometimes there are still differences and disagreements. It's not just a downside to divorce and remarriage/new relationships because it happens in intact families too. I can't tell you how many married couples I have seen over the years, disagree on what they should or shouldn't let the kids do. They argue and fight sometimes. I'm sure that in some situations, it may be part of the reason they divorce. Perhaps your marriage was perfect and you and your ex agreed on absolutely EVERYTHING. I doubt it, but I can give you the benefit of the doubt. But, not all families agree on everything. It would be nice if they could, but I doubt it can really happen. You may know couples where one just gives in but doesn't necessarily agree. That's just my opinion.

All I have said is that even if the parents are no longer together, it has to be assumed that they still love their children, even if they don't love each other. I don't think my husband has absolute trust in his exGF (he didn't have kids with his exW) based on things that have happened over the last year, but he can't change the fact that she is the mother and he has to assume, until she proves otherwise, that she will keep their daughter safe. And you are right that you may lose some of that ability to the court system in a divorce/unmarried situation, but I have also seen married biological parents lose their children to the court system for one or both mistreating their children. Staying together is no guarantee that the children will be safe.

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ceph

"The right support" is a very subjective phrase and it's not a one-sided action.
No matter how supportive one party is, if the other isn't willing to receive that support, they might as well not bother. You could be the most supportive person on the planet, and it might not do you any good if your partner won't accept your support. (I had an ex like that too - he wouldn't accept my support in a very stressful time and it caused some major problems) Sort of a "you can lead a horse to water..." thing.
"The right support" is a team effort. If one person isn't willing to be part of that team, the whole thing falls apart. Just like anything else in a relationship!
TOS, no one is saying you didn't try to support your exH (well, at least I'm not saying that) just that for one reason or another, it didn't wind up being "the right support"

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doodleboo

TOS

I never said my marriage would never end. Right now all is well but you never say never. But in the case it DID crumble I would admit that there was something lacking in the relationship and with my pride still in tact...I would move on.

I'm not much of one for flogging a dead horse. Especially if said horse cheated on me.

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barefoot_diva

Whoa, you ladies know how to ride that pony. I have two minutes to write something real quick, so let's see how I do ...

1. Ceph, you are absolutely (okay, mostly) right. The right support in the right environment works. Immaturity, self-shame, confusion ... all these things play a part. Sometimes the person matures and can cope with these things better in a second marriage. Sometimes it's just a case of it not being the 'right support'. And sometimes, just sometimes, you can be part of the problem, not part of the solution. It all depends.

2. TOS ... you're funny. Clinical depression doesn't happen 'once'. It's something that is always present, lurking in the hidden realms of your brain. I doubt your ex suffered one bout of depression and then ran away and never experienced it again. It may well have been the turning point for him, or the catalyst, if you will, but depression has a way of shaking things about and surviving it can seriously open your eyes to many things. You can blame his depression for his leaving you for someone else, and that's okay. Whatever is needed for a good nights sleep, old girl. But I bet his wife has been sleeping pretty well all these years also.

3. I would like someone to explain to me how it is that when you are married to a man, you somehow trust him to take care of your children if you're going out on a girls night, or visiting your mother for the weekend, or even if he's taking them out for a day at the zoo, but suddenly when you're divorced he cannot be trusted to keep your children safe from all those nasty predators that lurk around every corner? When you were married, he protected them, but now he 'cannot be trusted' ?

I've spent far too long sitting here now (7 minutes) writing this and it feels like my skin is crawling. Eeeuuwww! I need a manicure NOW. My fingers feel filthy.

p.s. doodleboo, come along to my parade. The local wenches make cookies in the shape of broken hearts. Cool, huh? (arsenic is free for first wives - they love it)

p.p.s. (ooh, this is starting to look like a cheesy sales page). TOW, you little obsessional nit-picker you, I know about suicidal people, in ways you cannot even imagine. Be a little chicken and peck, peck, peck all you want, I'm still too fabulous to do anything other than laugh at what you write. It's like having my own little Gary Larson show right here on my computer. Oh wait, I have that as well. Damn. You lose.

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theotherside

I agree that my exH probably has suffered more than one bout with clinical depression - my point, exactly. Over the quarter of a century that we were together, our relationship probably survived many bouts of depression in my exH, but just because it survived one, or a dozen, doesn't mean it is going to survive the next one.

"I don't think my husband has absolute trust in his exGF (he didn't have kids with his exW) based on things that have happened over the last year"

ima,

Based on this statement, it seems that your H has less trust in his exGF than he did when he was still with her. It is common for exSO's to behave very differently than they did while you were together. My exH and I did not always agree, but we shared the same basic core beliefs in what we thought was important when it came to child-raising. In addition, it is much easier to reach a consensus between two people than it is when there are third parties who put their two cents in - whether those third parties are the courts, or new SO's.

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theotherside

ceph,

"You could be the most supportive person on the planet, and it might not do you any good if your partner won't accept your support."

I agree. I would not call this not providing the "right" support - the problem does not lie with the quality or quantity of support, but with the ability of the partner to receive it. Sort of like when your body can not utilize the insulin that is produced effectively.

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imamommy

"ima,

Based on this statement, it seems that your H has less trust in his exGF than he did when he was still with her. It is common for exSO's to behave very differently than they did while you were together. My exH and I did not always agree, but we shared the same basic core beliefs in what we thought was important when it came to child-raising."

That's obviously NOT TRUE if he cheated on you during the marriage. I would assume that your trust in him wasn't the same just before your marriage ended as it was in the beginning of your marriage. He obviously behaved differently when he was still married to you. It's not true that you and he shared the same core beliefs in child raising.... if it was a 'core' belief, then why did he abandon his children for another woman? Where are his 'core beliefs' now? He must not have believed in it enough to keep him from allowing this evil 'other woman' from tearing him away from his kids.

If you want to go on believing that and if it helps you get through each day, so be it. But don't insult the intelligence of eveyone that can see what you refuse to...

Oh yeah, my husband didn't trust his ex very much when they were together. That's probably why they were only together a couple of years. She lied to him about money, stole from him, cheated on him and when he wanted to end it (after the first year), she mysteriously became pregnant, even though she claimed to be on the pill. He stayed another year to try and make it work for their baby, but she was cheating on him and driving him into financial ruin. We're still paying on some of her debt and it's been 8 years. The trust was pretty much destroyed. He did however give her the benefit of the doubt that she was a good mom to her kids. He wasn't with her long enough to see that her ideas on parenting were polar opposite of his.

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kkny

Ima, I also get the feeling that the "support" that TOSs X wanted was also financial. So it is TOSs fault that she didnt have as much money as TOW. I suspect now, after listening to my DD, that all X wants to talk about is the good old days when we were first married, is he wants to regain his youth -- is it my fault I cant support him in his quest.

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finedreams

ceph, according to imamommy her DH had 50/50 custody until he had met imamommy. so it is safe to say that SD was equal amount of time in both houses so whatever she has learned could be easily learned in both houses. she was never more at mom's house.

i am not saying that she learns bad stuff at dads house, i do not know, but if imamommy says whatever is bad comes from mom, mom could easily say the same thing. she could even say that until DH met imamommy and her kids SD never knew any bad stuff. you see, what goes around comes around...

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finedreams

on question what all divorced parents could do...

I think when we marry the first time and have children, we need to make sure we marry people who would remain good parents even if we get divorced, people who would not bring questionable partners or partners with bad kids into our children's lives if we get divorced. i could always guarantee with 100% that my X would never bring any quationable women with questionable children in DD's life. and he could always guarantee that I would never hang out wiht questionable men who have questionable children. that's why i never had to worry when DD was or is with dad and same with my X, he has no worries.

so there is a lot what people can do: do not have chidlren with idiots the first time around. it will save you a lot of trouble in the future.

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finedreams

if people cannot trust parents of their chidlren, i have hard time understanding why people had children with someone they cannot trust! and on many occasions more than one child! i would not have a child with X if i would not trust him to be a decent father who can be trusted around his daughter. i would not have children with people who bring unsafe partners to their house or endanger my child in any way. i cannot comprehend why people had children with someone they cannot trust their children to be with! it is a mystery to me. don't people think with their heads ot with you know what?so there is a lot people can do. think before having children!

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kkny

I think the problem is more like "6 degrees of seperation". For example, my gardner is a great, outstanding (and legal) guy. Sometimes he brings his son to help. What about the weekend he is sick, and son brings friend. That is when problems start. X may be fine, his SO may be OK, now we get into what happens when her sons or cousins, etc are in Xs house.

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finedreams

kkny,
decent people usually have decent kids and decent cousins and spend their time in decent circles of people. i mean of course there are exceptions, but really not that many...I do not have one person in my family or my surrounding who cannot be trusted around my DD. of course accidents happen, but when there are so many questionable people around then it really does not sound like accidents, sounds like string of poor choices. ...I had questionable neighbours, so i moved. and yet people have children with creepy people, then allow bunch of suspicous people to be around their children for years or even their whole life.

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pseudo_mom

Another post beat to death with 140 different subtopics

:)

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kkny

FD, I agree, I dont have one person in my life who cant be trusted. But my point is the further the chain goes out, the more likely it is that someone in the chain can not be trusted. I thought the play, Six Degrees of Seperation, was making the point that everyone has a friend, co-worker, relative of a friend, etc. that knows someone.

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