When you are divorced and you share a child with an ex, there are times when you feel as if you are still married. Trapped…in limbo…waiting until the magical age of 18 when you can forever cut ties with your ex! But until then, you are left to dangle there, wanting nothing more than to never have to deal with your ex again! You lived through the disappointments while being married, and now you are living through the disappointments once again! But this time, it’s worse! Why? Because now, not only are you disappointed, but your heart is breaking! You are looking at your beautiful child, the only thing good that came out of the marriage, and you are watching your child slowly lose faith in your ex. You watch time and time again as he disappoints her, over and over. You listen to the excuses that were once reserved for you, now spoken you to the child you both share! And it hurts…
What I like to call the beginning of the end, when my ex and I were still married, we had an argument because of him disappointing one of my other children. My oldest daughter did not have a dad to visit on the weekend, her dad died before she was born. Her relationship with my ex was extremely important to her. She didn’t have anyone else as a father figure, so to her, he was it. She was cheering for a rec league and had a competition coming up locally. She asked him to attend the competition, but he declined and told her he had to work. He promised her he would attend Regionals in Orlando if they qualified. He had no idea that their squad would do just that! Regionals were held during Thanksgiving weekend. We planned on eating with his parents, then heading to the competition for the remainder of the weekend. At the last minute, he refused to go. He stayed at his parents house instead. So I left their house upset and angry for my daughter! I knew how much it meant to her and knew she was broken hearted! He was full of broken promises and was unapologetic for it!
Over the years since our divorce, I’ve hidden the broken promises from our daughter as much as I could. There were a lot of times he just wouldn’t call, he wouldn’t come get her, he didn’t show up to her special events, he just didn’t care. But with her being only 2 years old when we separated, it was easy for me to keep it hidden. That was up until the last couple of years. She got older and when she became a teenager, the lack of contact he had with her was apparent.
Now I’m sure his family and friends will tell you this is because I moved her all the way across the country, but that’s not why! He never had scheduled visitation. He never took her whenever he could. He went on vacations by himself numerous times since our divorce, but only one time in 10 years had he included our daughter, and that was with his parents. She missed out on a family wedding…the only one missing….with the excuse “I thought you wouldn’t let her go!” He never asked! When my husband got orders to Washington, my ex was upset. I promised I would let her see him as much as possible. We agreed to each pay half of all flights back to Florida. When we had divorced, our child support had been set based on our current situation. 10 years later, I had never sought an increase with the agreement he would just help with any extra expenses that came up that weren’t factored in to the original divorce. During the first 6 months we lived in Washington, my ex refused her for Spring Break and her birthday…he would go 2-3 weeks at a time without calling her or returning her phone calls. Finally, after 6 months, I flew to Florida and she came with me and stayed for 5 weeks. During that time period, she spent almost every day with her stepmom. Her dad was always working. I was so thankful she had her stepmom, but sad for my daughter who longed to spend time with her dad as well!
Upon returning to Washington, we found out he had cheated on his wife and was planning on filing for divorce. Once again, my daughters heart broke! I was so glad we were living in Washington and she wouldn’t be subjected to another divorce on a daily basis!
My daughter was due to return in December for Christmas. I asked him repeatedly not to introduce his new girlfriend to our daughter. He kept denying he had cheated on his wife. He promised he would not introduce her to any woman…it would be just him and her spending time together. Less than 24 hours after she got off of the plane, she met her dads new girlfriend, who was also still married, and her two children. While there, they went to Orlando on vacation and her dad and girlfriend slept in the same bed together while my daughter shared a bed with the girlfriends daughter! Of course when I found out I was livid!! He couldn’t understand why I was SO upset that his 12 year old daughter was in the same room as them. Helllooooo!!!! Are you freaking kidding me?? First of all, she was still getting used to the idea of him getting a divorce, second of all, they were both STILL MARRIED TO OTHER PEOPLE!
I felt like an idiot! Since we had left almost a year before, anytime I had asked for help with her extra curricular activities, he told me he didn’t have any money! He couldn’t pay $250 for his half of cheerleading. He couldn’t afford half of school supplies….he had NO money! But here he was, spending money on his new girlfriend and her kids, meanwhile our kid is being left out. So I told him I was taking him back to court! Since then, he is refusing to talk to me. He will tell anyone who will listen it’s because I moved her to Washington, but that’s not true! It only became an issue when his child support was adjusted per Florida guidelines! I didn’t ask for more than what guidelines suggest! I’m not greedy by any means, but let’s be honest….if you can spend money on your mistress and her kids, you better be ready to spend it on your own child! You had her first and she’s your responsibility just as much as she is mine!
So this year has been full of disappointments for my daughter. She’s on the cheer squad and had been asking her dad since the summer to go to a cheer competition. I even offered to let him stay in our home to make it more affordable! He kept telling her he had to work! Her cheer squad made it to state….she continued to beg him to come….then he told her he didn’t have the money! The very same month he refused to come see her, he went to Central America with his girlfriend…supposedly for her work, but he had to take time off from work and there had to be out of pocket expenses for him. Once again, he let his daughter down. By the way, they won state!! 🙂
Then Spring Break came along. She was supposed to go to tryouts for cheer for the High School she is attending next year. They got into a big argument because he wanted to go to North Carolina with his girlfriend and her kids and stay in a cabin. He never asked our daughter about going. He didn’t care if she missed tryouts. He didn’t care if she didn’t get to see any of her family or friends while there. Not to mention, she told him herself he spent $800 on a cabin but couldn’t afford to see her cheer! Smart girl! Luckily for her, she got to tryout the day before they left for North Carolina…and she made it! 🙂
Now that she’s on the team, she has responsibilities for fundraising. Unfortunately, we are here and can’t participate. My husband has already reported to work and was able to attend the cheer parent meeting. My ex promised his daughter he would be there….no surprise, he was a no show! The next day she was at her best friends house when her dad returned her phone call. While on speaker, her friends mom heard the entire conversation regarding him missing the meeting. He denied telling our daughter he would be there. He stated he had to work, even though he never called or texted to tell her he had to miss it. My husband signed up for 4 shifts for the upcoming festival to work since my daughter won’t be there to work her 2 and her dad wasn’t there to sign up for any. When my daughter told him he needed to work 2 shifts he told her he couldn’t commit, he MAY have to work! He’s a fireman, he knows his schedule in advance! Later on, the mom told me about the conversation. She said she was so upset for my daughter. She said he was so cold, so cruel, not apologetic at all….she was pissed! She did say she was proud of my daughter though for standing up to him…my daughter said to her dad, at least I can count on my stepdad to be there for me! My ex had no idea someone else heard just how cruel he really is….the real him…the him that is the only true thing about him…cold and cruel!
So tonight I sat here once more listening to my daughter beg and plead to her dad. He finally committed to working one shift on Saturday for 3 hours. My husband will be responsible for the rest of the shifts. My ex asked why granny (my deceased husbands mom) couldn’t work a shift for her! Are you kidding!!! His girlfriend had just told my daughter she was not her REAL grandmother during Spring Break when she complained about not seeing her, but now that you want her to do something for YOU, she’s her granny!! This woman has been there since day 1…she has always been her grandparent…always calls…every week…and yes, she offered to work a shift, but my husband told her he would do it because she has family coming in! What about my daughters “blood” relatives that live in town! Her grandparents, aunt, uncle etc….why can’t they cover his shift!! They are only related to her when it’s convenient for them! And what’s my exes excuse for not working a Sunday shift? Oh….he has to paint a bathroom! Seriously….I can’t make this shit up! A freaking bathroom….it’s full of shit and so is he!
My precious daughter sat here begging and pleading for her dad to do this ONE thing for her….Please dad, please….can’t you just paint it next weekend…aren’t I more important than a bathroom?
Of course you are baby…and don’t you EVER forget it!