Advice for children's father in an unheatlhy relationship

Kelly - posted on 07/21/2015 ( 2 moms have responded )




Let me start by saying this isn't a jealousy post. I DO very much want my children's father to find someone that he is happy with that also make our boys happy.
We had a great co-parenting relationship and often had joint birthday parties and were guest at each others family holiday celebrations.

That all changed:
A year and a half ago my children's father met a woman and they started dating. I was very much apart of the process - meeting her before she met our children. Exchanging phone numbers, keeping in contact with her when she would have our children when their dad got called into work. Everything started out fine. She has 4 children (2 who were with their father and she didn't have custody and 2 (a boy and a girl) that she had with her full time - 2nd father did not have custody at all). her youngest two are around my children's age and the boy has a lot of disciplinary/emotional issues. Her daughter is autistic which was a great source of bonding because our youngest is also autistic.She was a great resource and helped us find additional services for our son.
Around the 5 or 6 month of them dating I would start getting text messages from his girlfriend over conversations I had with him about our children. Offering her advice or her opinion. When I would bring this up to my children's father he would brush it off or say she was just trying to help. I didn't like her having an opinion when it came to our children. Slowly he would start taking her advice over parenting decisions we made previously and would start calling them into question. We would start having disagreements over things we previously agreed on. Then she would start texting me things my children's father 'supposedly' said about me and get me angry and upset with him.So bascially our great co parenting relationship was starting to breakdown. We spent less and less time actually talking about our children and more time giving each other short text messages or matter of fact voicemails.

Her youngest son began to have problems at school and he started negatively affecting our children. While our children were with their father and his girlfriend, her son would pick on our children. Steal their toys, break them, tease them and bully them. My children would come back to me starting to say that this boy didn't like them and even though they wanted to be friends he wouldn't share and he was mean. I'd ask them where their dad was during these situtations and they would say he was sleeping or not there and I'd ask where was his girlfriend and did they tell her what her son was doing and they said yes and she would say her son didn't mean it.
Not being a mom that wants to tell another mother about her children I went to my children's father and told him what our children were telling me. He said he'd address it and I let it go.
Fast forward to an incident where her son locked my eldest son in a closet and laughed while my son cried and begged to be let out.
When i found that out, that was my final straw and i did tell my childrens father that i wouldn't allow her children around mine anymore.My boys were becoming miserable. Withdrawn, angry, acting out in school and i could only tie this behavior to this negative child.
I did push and threaten (i will admit) to keep our children until he told this woman her kids were to not be around our children. I knew it would make it harder on their relationship but i was concerned for my children. Especially if this bullying was happening when their father wasn't around and the child's own mother wouldn't do anything about it.

He agreed and spoke with his girlfriend and what he told me was that he asked her to take a break. To cool off for a couple months and they would talk again after summer break.

Fast forward to a day where i am picking up my children from his house. Our nanny told me she was taking them to the park for the day and they would be back by the time i was done work. I arrive at his house, our nanny's car is in the driveway but she isn't answering the door. I call her cell and her phone is off. I walk around the house trying to see if they are in a different part and they can't hear me knock (he doesn't have a door bell and i didn't have a key - at the time- to his house). I start thinking all the bad things that are possibly happening in the house while I'm outside. The nanny and the boys are passed out because of Carbon minioxide poisoning, someone broke in and they are being held in the know scary mom thoughts and just as I am about to call the police - my children's father girlfriend pulls up with my nanny and my children. They all went to the park together. She told my nanny my children's father gave her permission. I was so upset because he told me they weren't supposed to be around each other. I take my boys and leave a message for their father to call me.

I get home and realize a medication my youngest needs isn't in his stuff, so i call their father again and again no answer so i drive back to his house and see that he is home, knock on the door and when he answers asks for our kids meds and also ask why he hasn't called me back and why he didn't tell me his girlfriend and him aren't on a break anymore. He looks at me stunned like i said something crazy and i tell him what happened and he tells me he didn't even know the boys were with his ex girlfriend that he didn't give her permission to take our children anywhere. that they were on a break and that he'd only see her without the boys and her children to talk. She was actually upstairs in his bedroom when i stopped by so he called her down and asked her what happened. She stuck to her story and i looked at him and said "either she's lying or you are. If she's lying she took our children today without your permission or my permission and lied to our nanny to do so. And that is a HUGE problem and almost criminal. If you are lying then she didn't do anything wrong and you and I have a huge problem because you are lying to me." I told him to figure it out and until he knew what was going on the boys would stay with me.

He ended up calling me the very next day stating he wasn't lying and that she was and that he completely broke it off with her because he couldn't trust her.

And our 'happy' co-parenting life went back to normal.

Until a week ago when my eldest told me he couldn't stand keeping lies and secrets and that Daddy told him and his brother to lie to me about the fact that he got back together with this woman (she has all 4 of her children now) and they've been all hanging out and spending time together since May.
I was floored - i was shaking. I was so beyond upset that he would keep this from me and moreover that he would look our children in the face and tell them to keep this from me. My son said the reason he told them to lie is because "Mommy would ruin Daddy's life and take you both away from me." that's how he got them to keep his secret.

I confronted him and told me he knew i wouldn't be happy and that he didn't think he had any other choice but to keep it from me.

I can't trust this man and i am so beyond hurt that he would jepordize my relationship with our children - especially since when all the bad things happened in this relationship in regards to my children I was the one they told. I am so terrified of the possiblities that could happen with my boys and I REALLY don't respect this woman at all. I know i can't control who is around my children BUT i still view this person as a bad infection in our lives and I'm at a loss.

At the end of the day this relationship wasn't a good fit for our children but he doesn't see that. Our family counsler (yes we all see a therapist together - i meant it when i said we try very hard to be a good co-parenting unit) said we need to compromise and try to work through this but my foundation of trust with him is gone. How do i try to compromise with a person that would comfortably tell our children to lie to their mother. Their own mother????? So he can be happy?

Am i wrong to view this as completely selfish on his part?
What options do I have? I was planning on going back to court to try and limit visitation but he is a good father - its the person he's with and her children i have a bigger problem with.

I really am at a loss


View replies by

MaryAnn - posted on 07/21/2015




I cant say that any of what he did or she did isnt wrong- the situation sounds pretty messed up.
But part of post-divorce coparenting is accepting that when your children are with him- you have NO control. You cant just walk into his house. Beyond education and health, he has no obligation to tell you anything- and who he has the children around is his own business. You cant just take your kids away because she, or her children, are there. Remember, even for a time- it was equally their home. You, too, have responsibility in this- and its unfair to expect him to tell you the truth if youre going to go outside court orders.
You should probably get back with your lawyer, see where you stand within your rights, get back onto the plans as per your existing order, and see what changes can be reasonably made.

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