Gia - posted on 06/05/2014 ( 1 mom has responded )
Hello everyone, I'm new and I'm looking for some advice/support here....
I was divorced 2.5 years ago from my daughters bio dad when she was 3 years old. He was verbally and emotionally abusive, and exhibited sociopathic behavior. He was very violent when he was angry, which was often, which I felt put my daughter in potential danger even if he never physically tried to hurt her- so we divorced because I knew we deserved better and I could see that his behavior was damaging her already....Skip forward almost 2 years, he found out I was in another relationship. My fiance is a wonderful man, kind, patient, gentle- he does whatever he can to take care of us- he and my daughter have a great relationship and he treats her as his own. The Bio Dad walked away from our daughter 8 months ago because he was angry and jealous over my new relationship- he lives only 5 minutes down the road from us, and has made no effort to see, speak to or ask about our daughter. The twice a month 1 hour long visits (his choice) stopped completely. He skipped her 5th birthday, christmas, easter- etc. The day before her birthday, he emailed me and asked if he could see her- after 5 months of silence- and I said no, not until you agree to be a father. I explained that my door was always open for him, and I encouraged a relationship between them but only if he got his act together and FULLY committed to being a dad- and not walking away and abandoning her every time something upset him. So he emailed me a few more times- calling me names, insulting me etc- and never once said that he missed his child. After that- silence again- and we are now at the 8 month mark.
Anyways, my daughter has never talked about him really....She has mentioned him maybe twice in 2 years, and I'm not surprised- You can't expect much attachment when someone never interacted with your child. She's far more intelligent than he gives her credit for- she knows what's going on and has always understood things in her own way. Last night we were talking, and she asked about fathers day. She asked if we could get something for my fiance because he's been in her life for 2 years and she views him as a father figure (we never encourage her to call him daddy, nor do we encourage her to forget about her bio dad- I have given her a photo album with pictures of her and her bio dad in it- she knows who he is, she just never mentions him) and I said yes....then she mentioned her Bio Dad....She said "What about the other daddy?" I said "what about him?" She asked "Will we go back to his house?" I said "I don't think so..." she said "Good, I don't miss him because he's mean. I don't want to see him ever again because he scared me.", later on she said "He was mean to you and made you cry,...I don't like mean stuff...he has to leave me alone" and "*Fiance's name* is nice to me, but not my other daddy..." I was taken aback...I've never really heard her go into so much detail about him....like I always figured, she just keeps these thoughts to herself until she's ready to talk about it. I never realized how much she remembered since she never talked about it much before.... After this conversation, she went back to painting her pictures, and that was really it.... Anyway, I tried to explain things to her and I think I did okay- but how do I go about explaining something like this to her? I want her to feel safe, secure and loved no matter what....but I also want her to know what's going on if she asks...but I'm not sure how to explain it? thank you, and I'm SO sorry this is so long!!!!!