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Originally Posted by DonH
Originally Posted by DnJ
Kids are far more aware and accepting than we give them credit for. The kids of a good friend of mine were explaining their week. What they did in school. And the bedrooms they have at their two homes.

Switch over had just happened, and it was perfectly normal for them. My friend, still rather freshly minted into this divorce thing, was the one having difficulties. The kids were not.

How can you know this? Or how can you be so sure? I mean it could be just as you assume but far too many times it is not. Did you grow up wishing you could have 2 separate bedrooms or get shuttled to different houses, have to endure mom or dad having different men and women shuttle in and out of your lives?

The fact and truth of the matter is the majority of kids want mom and dad to stay together. They often pray for them to get back together even years after a D. This is more the truth. Kids will often figure out what the parents want and need and do what it takes to try to please them. They may try to be accepting and they most certainly are aware but if given the choice I’m confident the great majority would ask to have their mom and dad back together and would give up their two bedrooms and fractured lives in an instant to have their family whole again. They may be trying to make the best of a terrible situation but it is not normal - and if living like this has now become normal it’s just another notch on the downfall of society.
this has been what my son reports as his experience.


M 20+ T25+
S ~15.5 (BD)
BD 4/6/15
H moved out 4/24/15
D Final 12/23/16

You have no idea what people are going thru in their personal lives. Be nice. It's that simple.
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I planned to reply to your other post--been busy with Halloween. I completely agree pre-existing assets are a complex topic when divorcing and an area I would do some strategizing. Wishing you and yours a wonderful Halloween creating some new memories. (:



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Got an update for us BL?


Me: 40 W:41
T: 14 M: 11
S: 5

BD & OM Jun 2020
W moves out Aug 2020

"What happened happened, and couldn't have happened any other way...because it didn't"
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kml/bttrfly/Dawn70/DnJ,
Originally Posted by kml
As for OM2 - your kids know YOU are dad.
Originally Posted by bttrfly
echoing kml - you are their dad. that won't change.
Originally Posted by Dawn70
You’re still their dad and your family is still just as important to them.
Originally Posted by DnJ
You are Dad! In son’s eyes, at his age, there is nothing you cannot do. You are all powerful and all knowing...Regardless of the pet name that was written upon son’s homework, Dad’s is written within his heart.
Thanks for the support and reassurances on the dad-front. I appreciate the kind words. There's no doubt in my mind I am crushing it as a dad. I like S6 and D3 to pieces, and am doing everything I can to be their rock in this difficult and confusing situation.

kml/bttrfly/Dawn70/DnJ,
Originally Posted by kml
And let’s hope OM2 turns out to be an okay guy - it will be better for your kids if that is so. Being across the street from his sister may even give a measure of safety for your kids, as there are extra eyes in the relationship between your ex and him.
Originally Posted by bttrfly
suddenly there's this perfect stranger who helped implode your marriage having a relationship with your kids that you have no control over.
Originally Posted by Dawn70
Like kml said, let’s all hope he turns out to be a decent guy, for the sake of your kids. You will always be a strong, positive, stable influence for them.
Originally Posted by DnJ
I get how that hurts. I get how I wanted my kids to resent their Mom and what she did. Acceptance and forgiveness are incredible gifts for one’s self. The path and effort to find them is very much worth it.
In terms of OM2, you're right it will be better for the kids if he's a good guy and good to them. I need to swallow the hurt I feel with him in the picture and focus on what's best for the kids. The good thing is I have no indication he's not being nice or good to them. The only thing was D3 told my mom she likes when it's just her and S6 instead of OM2 too (but that could just be she wants more attention/focus from ExW and doesn't get as much when OM2 is around).

DnJ/DonH/CWarrior/Ginger1,
Originally Posted by DnJ
Kids are far more aware and accepting than we give them credit for.
Originally Posted by DonH
How can you know this? Or how can you be so sure?...The fact and truth of the matter is the majority of kids want mom and dad to stay together. They often pray for them to get back together even years after a D. This is more the truth.
Originally Posted by CWarrior
I think this speaks more to what DnJ said--LBS (adults) having trouble adapting. I doubt most kids have dreams or wishes one way or another about stepparents, beyond what they get from Disney films or fairy tales.
Originally Posted by Ginger1
Do the kids prefer this situation? Of course they would prefer one home with two stable healthy parents. But absolutely they adapt and they can be happy. We have a harder time adapting than they do.
Good discussion on the impact to kids.

Long-term, I honestly don't know what to think about the impacts to my kids. I've read studies and heard stories on both sides, some saying there are negatives on personalities/education/future relationships and others talking about the ability of kids to adjust and be resilient. The friends and family I know from divorced families seemed to have at least periods of significant impact whereas those I know from non-divorced families seem to be better adjusted career/relationship-wise, but it's anecdotal.

Short-term I do know for sure my kids have had significant struggles. A year of now S6 crying and meltdowns and asking why didn't they try harder; D3 crying for mommy and confusion on schedule and asking why things are always changing. That's been heartbreaking to see as a father. But, all I can do is my best to be their rock and help them through it.


Me:39 Ex-W:37
M:7 T: 9
S:6 D:3
BD/IHS/Confirm EA/PA: Feb '20
OM1 affair ends: May '20
W/OM2 & moves out: June-July '20
W files for D: Jul20
OM2 confirmed: 9/2020
Divorced: May '21
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CWarrior/OnlyBent,
Originally Posted by CWarrior
Wishing you and yours a wonderful Halloween creating some new memories. (:
Originally Posted by OnlyBent
Got an update for us BL?
Thanks for checking in.

Halloween was good; made some memories with the kids. It's so fun trick-or-treating, seeing them run from house to house and try to carry their bad of candy which gets heavier by the block. I did have a down moment when I dropped them off at ExW's and saw mutual friends at her place with her and OM2 instead of me and also OM2 in a "family costume", but took a moment to be sad and then went over to another friend/neighbor's place for some warm spiked apple cider.

Last week (my week w/the kids) was extremely very difficult. On Tues when ExW dropped them off after her dinner night D3 was clinging to her and crying that she didn't want mommy to leave and ExW asked if she could come in and sit on the couch with D3, which I agreed to. Then S6 started tearing up and longingly looking out the window when she left. On Wed & Thurs my parents usually watch the kids but my dad was out of town and my mom had a medical issue so I was flexing out and taking off from work both days which was challenging. D3 continued to have meltdowns throughout the week/weekend. Even something like getting out of the bathtub. It's very hard on me emotionally as a single parent and with the divorce and honestly it really wore me down to the point I was ready for the relief of ExW's week. I'm doing my best to do it all, but it's not easy.

This week (ExW's week with the kids) Monday I take care of S6 with after school activities anyway, but apparently D3 wouldn't go to dance class. Then on Tuesday I found out D3 later didn't go to preschool due to a meltdown with ExFIL. Wednesday went well and I took the kids to a drive-through Christmas light show at a zoo for our dinner night, which was nice, but Thursday I ended up picking S6 up from school because D3 wouldn't get in the car for ExFIL. Meanwhile ExW is working through a lot of this, and letting me and her parents take up the load. And D3 is definitely struggling recently and having a lot of emotions and I feel for her.

Anyway, I feel a little guilty but do need a mental break and am looking forward to some relaxing by myself this weekend before the cycle starts again Monday.


Me:39 Ex-W:37
M:7 T: 9
S:6 D:3
BD/IHS/Confirm EA/PA: Feb '20
OM1 affair ends: May '20
W/OM2 & moves out: June-July '20
W files for D: Jul20
OM2 confirmed: 9/2020
Divorced: May '21
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I’m sorry. It’s all very difficult and yea, it’s emotionally draining. It’s ok to need that break.

Is your custody schedule one week on and one week off? Honestly, for young kids, it’s not a good schedule. Especially for someone as young as D3. When they leave for the other parents house, it feels like forever when they are going to see the other parent and tend to cling to them. I didn’t have 50/50 with my ex and there were periods where she didn’t see him for a week and she would get really upset because she knew it was going to be a long time. She rarely got upset when she went from my house to her dads, because she saw me very often and it would never be longer than 2 days until she was with me again.

You might want to figure out somethings here there is a shorter period of not seeing the other parent. I truly believe it helps

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Good Morning BL

I understand the feeling of guilty for desiring a little down time to rejuvenate one’s self. Realize, you need to be ok, if you want your children to be ok. There is no need to feel ashamed or guilty about placing your life vest on first. And I know you will continue to place the needs of your kids high on your priority list. Right as it should be. Just once in a while, place BL42 up there too. Finding times with minimal impact is the real trick.

Originally Posted by BL42
In terms of OM2, you're right it will be better for the kids if he's a good guy and good to them. I need to swallow the hurt I feel with him in the picture and focus on what's best for the kids. The good thing is I have no indication he's not being nice or good to them.

It’s nice that OM2 is doing alright.

I’d like to encourage / suggest something for you:

“I need to swallow the hurt I feel with him in the picture and focus on what's best for the kids.”

Uncouple these two items.

Always focus on what’s best for the kids. That is its own thing. Do not utilize it as a reason or defence for altering your feelings. That will just build resentment.

No, you should not swallow your feelings. At the time of interaction, yes do remain calm. However, you need to let go those feelings. Experience those feelings. Rationalize those feelings. And in that, gain influence and therefore “control” of them.

Of course you’re hurt. It is ok. Make time to safely feel it. To work through it. To find peace.

I find a scheduled time work pretty well on altering and influencing one’s irrational emotional self. Emotions stir from triggers, be those external or internal. These events happen randomly and we react. When you schedule a time to force/encourage yourself to feel, it lessens the affect of future triggers.

A very important part of this scheduled forced feeling is stopping it. Schedule yourself 5 or 10 minutes where you allow (force) a freely expressed response of your hurt. Set an alarm for both start and finish. With this out of your system the reminder of your day is your’s.

In time, 10 minutes becomes 5 minutes, then 3, then 1, and then zero. You uncouple the irrational response from a trigger by rationalizing the trigger and your response. It’s emotional understanding, which is the essence of acceptance.

Originally Posted by BL42
Long-term, I honestly don't know what to think about the impacts to my kids. I've read studies and heard stories on both sides, some saying there are negatives on personalities/education/future relationships and others talking about the ability of kids to adjust and be resilient. The friends and family I know from divorced families seemed to have at least periods of significant impact whereas those I know from non-divorced families seem to be better adjusted career/relationship-wise, but it's anecdotal.

There are many stories that illustrate many different outcomes. I caution using the word studies as it gives a certain unrealized credence to such. And there are far too many variables in such chaotic systems as family interactions and life’s interactions to distill it down to divorced or not.

You know me and my situation. I’m divorce. I’ve got an awesome family and life.

My views and belief - which is the real driver of an outcome, IMHO - you will achieve that which you strive for. Be that consciously/purposefully or not.

If you believe that broken families are in a deficit and are more likely to end up truly broken, they will be.

Notice, the use of “broken family” instead of parents that are divorced. Did you notice that? Did it seem normal for me to state it that way? We all create our realities. If one is predisposing themselves to a certain way, which we all are smile , make it what you want.

If you believe that children of divorce parents have no intrinsic dysfunction or deficit than any other child or person then it will be so.

Our children’s paths are not decided by our marital status. Believe that!

Your path is not decided by your marital status. Believe that too!

Even if the “studies” are true. Be the anomaly. Be an outlier on the graph. Be the Dad and kids that thrive and enjoy a wonderful life. Join me, let’s band together and make that the norm of future stories and studies.

I’m pretty big proponent for casting of self-imposed shackles. Be it fear, worry, doubt, or whatever. Rise up. You got this!

D


Now: Me54 XW50 S24 S23 S21 D19

Oct 8/17-BD, Moves in w/OM, Leaves Kids
Me49 W46 S20 S19 S16 D15
M26 T29
Dec 9/17-Legal Separation
Oct 3/18-W Files
Apr 6/19-Divorced

Love the Sinner, Forgive the Sin.
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I’m also going to address the “impact “ to the kids.

The impact is honestly minimal of both parents stay peaceful and the kids are left out of the personal stuff.

Honestly, this has sukked more for me and my daughter. She’s a well adjusted 14 year old. Happy and healthy. I can’t honestly see any impact our divorce has had on her in the long run so far. She never knew us together, but she’s lived between the 2 houses, has lots of people who love her and her parents get along even if we don’t live together . She is very smart, thriving in school and thriving socially . No depression, just a snarky teenager, but a happy one, nonetheless .

I couldn’t have asked for a better outcome for her through all of this.

Me, I’m the messed up one, lol

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Hi BL42, I strongly support what Ginger and DnJ shared. I had one more thought--

Originally Posted by BL42
I dropped them off at ExW's and saw mutual friends at her place with her and OM2 instead of me and also OM2 in a "family costume"

Then on Tuesday I found out D3 later didn't go to preschool due to a meltdown with ExFIL.

ExW asked if she could come in and sit on the couch with D3, which I agreed to.

My XW and I are 11yrs divorced. I've never seen her boyfriends. She's never stepped foot in my home. My XGF saw her XH twice in the three years we were together. While working through your feelings towards OM2 would be helpful, it should also be possible to restructure your handoffs such that you see a whole lot less of what's going on over there. In my case, the person taking custody does the picking up, hand-offs happen at the car, the kids walked out on their own once they were old enough, and we leveraged school and daycares for contact-less handoffs.



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Ginger1,
Originally Posted by Ginger1
Is your custody schedule one week on and one week off? Honestly, for young kids, it’s not a good schedule.

You might want to figure out somethings here there is a shorter period of not seeing the other parent. I truly believe it helps
Yes, our current schedule is one week on and one week off with a "dinner evening" on opposite weeks. We'll have to monitor and reconsider if it's not good for the kids.

I thought the "it's daddy's week" / "it's mommy's week" would be a more structured & easier to understand for the kids than going back and forth every 2-3 days and all the associated transitions. And with my flexible work schedule and volunteering for kids' activities, and all last year watching them before/after school even on ExW's weeks, I've seen the kids almost as much as her during her weeks. So it might be as you say more upset leaving ExW than me because of my additional involvement.

DnJ,

Originally Posted by DnJ
Uncouple these two items.

Always focus on what’s best for the kids. That is its own thing. Do not utilize it as a reason or defence for altering your feelings. That will just build resentment.

No, you should not swallow your feelings. At the time of interaction, yes do remain calm. However, you need to let go those feelings. Experience those feelings. Rationalize those feelings. And in that, gain influence and therefore “control” of them.
Originally Posted by DnJ
My views and belief - which is the real driver of an outcome, IMHO - you will achieve that which you strive for. Be that consciously/purposefully or not.
Originally Posted by DnJ
Even if the “studies” are true. Be the anomaly. Be an outlier on the graph. Be the Dad and kids that thrive and enjoy a wonderful life. Join me, let’s band together and make that the norm of future stories and studies.

I’m pretty big proponent for casting of self-imposed shackles. Be it fear, worry, doubt, or whatever. Rise up. You got this!
Always insightful posts.

You're right about decoupling the kids and my OM2 emotions. I do for the part most...always focusing on doing my best for the kids and not burdening them with my OM2 emotions, but then take some time afterwards to process. Sometimes, if I'm being honest, my frustration seeps through when I'm with them but mostly not.

Great attitude about adjusting the mindset, casting aside the self-imposed shackles, and striving to be the outliers. I do think I'm striving to thrive and have a wonderful but an area to work on for sure!

CWarrior,
Originally Posted by CWarrior
While working through your feelings towards OM2 would be helpful, it should also be possible to restructure your handoffs such that you see a whole lot less of what's going on over there.
The good news is, based on feedback from the board, ExW & I did agree to switch weekly transitions from Sunday evenings to Mondays before/after the school day, so now drop offs are limited to off-week dinners. It's fewer transitions for the kids and further reduces the need for me to bring them to her house, with a potential OM2 sighting. Halloween was a one-off so we could each do some trick-or-treating with them. ExW does has a habit of stepping into the house with D3 or to drop off their bags, so I may email her about that.


Me:39 Ex-W:37
M:7 T: 9
S:6 D:3
BD/IHS/Confirm EA/PA: Feb '20
OM1 affair ends: May '20
W/OM2 & moves out: June-July '20
W files for D: Jul20
OM2 confirmed: 9/2020
Divorced: May '21
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