Co-parenting over a distance

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  • #18002 Report

    Drp
    Participant

    my husband and I separated nearly 2 years ago and he has been living a couple of miles away and having her one night a week and alternate weekends. He has met someone new who lives with her children 2-3 hours away and i would imagine that he is likely to move in with her sooner rather than later. I am concerned my daughter is going to be absolutely devastated. He won’t be able to have her during the week, unless it is at my house which is an option I guess as I work late that evening- and I can’t imagine she will want to be out of the loop with her friends alternate weekends. He has grown up children and did exactly the same with them 20 years ago (leave, move) and was then really really flakey which affected them hugely. I don’t want this to be repeated.

    Many suggestions?!?!

    #18006 Report

    Kathymumofone
    Participant

    How old is your daughter? Can she coach travel on her own?

    my ex moved 90 miles away so I’ve allowed him to use my sitting room almost every Sunday since to see our son. Son wants to stay locally to do sports class and friends birthday parties, plus I didn’t want him spending half of every Sunday on a motorway.

    Son goes to ex’s house one long weekend each half term & Easter, plus 5 days between Xmas & new year, and a summer holiday away.

    it works for us, for now, I go out or work in garden when ex is there. I guess it will flex as son becomes teenager.

    being flexible is key

    #18009 Report

    TrevCarp
    Participant

    Drp This is a hard place to be in and I am sure a lot of separate families find themselves in. I have a similar issue in wether to move further away or not. Due to where me and my boy is expensive, especially for a single dad. travel and rent is just stupid, and will always hinder our finance with me wanting to return back to work. I have chosen to stay, because of my son schooling, even tho he only gets to see his mum one weekend, and his gran and brother the other weekend, moving him would mean that would be affected. However I have then got to live with choosing not to move means financially we are on a very tight  line, just surviving. someone else may say in the long tern we should move. I have a friend who lives 2 hrs drive away from me, I would love to put some tinder on the fire, but cant because of the practicality of distance. but will I latter regret that, would my son benefit a family environment?

    Parenting is so hard, a good parent wants to always put their children first, but one parent normally has the role far more than the other, I hate to say normally the mum, but not always.

    Your partner is moving on, unless they are considering something closer, obviously the equal compromise a hour closer still would not work. Life may change that your daughter and father see each other less, I totally get you want to protect your daughter and want her to have the best, but you might have to do that in other ways, helping encouraging extra contact on weekends and holiday, including face time etc.

    What your husband done in his past is his past, you can only try and influence now and your daughter. I have no doubt you daughter will struggle but I also know by your concerns she has an amazing mum, and you will keep it as normal as possible for her. its always easier said than done when we are the ones that pick up the pieces. You also will have to deal with another women coming into your daughter life, trying to manage that in a positive way, you are going to have to be a saint.

    I wish I had the answer to say its all going to turn out perfect, but we never do, do we?

    #18016 Report

    Drp
    Participant

    Many thanks for your reply. It’s nice to hear you have found an arrangement that works. Was your son very upset when he moved?

    My daughter is nearly 8-so will be too young for a while yet.

    It has taken me a long time to get ex to be reliable- being too flexible will backfire with him. I think maybe him coming here during the week would work…but I’m not sure I want him here for the whole weekend and he won’t come every weekend of that I’m absolutely sure!

    #18018 Report

    Drp
    Participant

    Anonymous you make some great points!!

    I probably do try to make everything ok and sort everything out. Maybe I need to see what he actually comes up with. Ridiculously even though he left and behaved AWFULLY I have continuously supported him practically and emotionally.

    His son lives nearby actually….

    in terms of the new woman…. I have a great relationship with my step kids. I am closer to them now than ever and see them very regularly. I hope this woman- if he stays with her – is lovely and that my daughter has another adult in her life that comes to love her and support her…. and maybe ‘supplements’ his parenting as I did when my step kids were growing up!

    #18020 Report

    Drp
    Participant

    Trevcarp thank you for your kind words. There is no great outcome to this situation is there 😞 I will try to always be there for my daughter and support her through what comes.

    #18035 Report

    Drp
    Participant

    I have never posted on an online forum before but it has been really helpful. Thank you.

    I think I agree with you Anonymous – he is a 54 year old man and I still sort out half his problems! And no I don’t want him in my house. (My manta was ‘its easier to deal with feeling resentful than guilty’ and ‘if you can help/ support/ manage then you should’ but I think I need to practice the ‘he’s not my responsibility’ one!!)

    as an update I spoke to him earlier and said ‘ as and when you decide to move down you need to speak to me well in advance’ and he was shocked and horrified and said ‘I don’t want to live with someone else’s children!’ – this may change and I will always remember the thoughts and opinions people have shared with me today but I did think, ‘yeah, I probably believe that!’

     

     

    #18047 Report

    Kathymumofone
    Participant

    Drp, when we split, ex had always left for work before son was up, home after he was in bed, and chose not to spend much 1 to 1 time with him at weekends. So to be honest, it didn’t make much difference.

    the odd thing is that now ex travels to ours, I disappear and he spends 8 solid hours with his son, so they have a better relationship than when they lived in the same house. I turn the router off so ex can’t browse internet, 😊 so no distractions. they play chess, go to lunch etc.

    So be optimistic, the oddest things can happen.

    #18048 Report

    TrevCarp
    Participant

    I love your story Kathymumofone,

    Shows it don’t have to always be split everything, but putting the children first. obviously not possible for everyone. I applaud you, of making the best of a bad situation.

     

     

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