Irregular contact making my child’s mental health suffer

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  • #49714 Report

    april_showers
    Participant

    Hi everyone, I’ve just signed up.

    My son’s dad has made it clear he never wanted him, we broke up once he found out I was pregnant, and over the last five years he’s been in and out of hus life and I feel like it’s so bad for his mental health that I wish he’d just not see him at all. He has other kids who he sees much more regularly, even has overnight. He has never had my son for more than about 3 hours at time (and in that 3 hours he won’t pick him up so I spend over half the time walking between our houses so I get about an hour to myself) and so far he’s seen him once in the last 11 weeks…though has just asked to see him tomorrow. This late notice thing is really less than ideal too. When my son comes home he is upset all night, and for weeks after, he’s only five so I don’t think he makes the connection with seeing his dad and what it does to his emotional wellbeing, but he never asks to see him either or says he misses him. It’s so unfair that this can be accepted as reasonable behaviour by a father, all I can think is how long summer holidays felt as a child, and he is going that long, sometimes longer, in between seeing his dad. Also, I’ve seen how rubbish he was around his other kids when we were together, always angry and literally never did anything with them, they all just sat in a poky dark little room for days on end.

    I’ve also heard he has a new girlfriend and he hasn’t told me himself which I think is so wreckless in a pandemic, he can’t suddenly widen his bubble (she also has kids) and bring that extra exposure to us without talking it through.

    I don’t think I’m even looking for advice, just to voice the fact that I think it would be much better for my son if his dad wasn’t involved at all, and the guilt that I feel for thinking like that. I’m sure I’m not alone?

    #49715 Report

    Lulublue
    Participant

    you’re not alone!
    my child’s dad turned up 50% of the time and was pretty angry and abusive toward me. She was very young and when I realised his behaviour was affecting her at 18months, banging on the door shouting for daddy who hadn’t turned up again because he got pissed the night before, was heartbreaking! I was close to a breakdown and asked him to contact mediation as I was tired, exhausted and I wanted her to have stability.
    unfortunately, he never did contact mediation, he only refused mediation because he wouldn’t be able to scream and shout at them and get his own way.
    Id suggest mediation to him, see what he says. If he wants to step up he will, if he doesn’t he’ll walk away. It’s not easy accepting the other parent doesn’t love yourself child as much as you do, but 2 years later I can hand on heart say I tried everything possible for their relationship and sadly, him walking away was the best decision he ever made. I wonder what she’d be like now if she had a dad turning up whenever it suited him? Not the little girl I have today! She would be broken like I was 2 years ago.
    follow your gut, put the ball in his court and pray he does the right thing xx

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