Long Distance Dad / About to separate

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  • #55662 Report


    Hi all,

    Any advice / stories (good and bad) appreciated.

    In short about to start going through a separation. I fear it might get messy. I have 2 wonderful young kids.

    The issue is I live down south and moved here so my wife could be closer to her parents.  The majority of dads that I have got to know are the other halves of the friends my wife has made. They are sort of mates, but I feel I am kind of an extra when it comes to group chats / invites.

    All my close friends are back up north. I still speak to them (my best mate we still text on a regular basis).

    With the separation I fear I am going to lose any sort of support network I had down here. And I have no clue how I am going to afford a property to live in.

    Therefore I am kind of resigned to accepting the only way I can get through this awful process that is coming is to move away back to my home town. There i have some support but also can try and maintain some standard of living.

    It is a horrid decision. I have tried to think of ways to stay here for the sake of my kids. But it just fills me with dread living somewhere where i didn’t really want to live. And I worry that if I do stay here it is going to seriously impact my mental health and wellbeing as the days i dont see my kids will be tough.

    I am starting to accept I am not going to be the present dad I hoped I’d be. But I still want to be there as best I can for my children (albeit appreciate that sounds like a shallow offer).

    The question is whether any mums / dads have this arrangement with their ex and does it work? What things can you do to make it work, so the kids still feel like they have the other parent in their lives. I suspect it is going to be a bi weekly visit (whether me come down here or they come up to me). I am still trying to work through this.

    Any advice as to what you have found works appreciated but also how you have managed to stay connected to you kids (and whether your relationship has deteriorated / stayed the same / improved???)






    #55663 Report


    Hi Trev1234,

    I am new to this ( Gingerbread forum) I do understand where you’re coming from, it sounds like you really do care about your wife to have decided to move here despite everything else and also your children to think about how the separation is going to affect them.

    This is somehow a tough one thought as we women tend to think in a different way to the way men think but both can generally compromise when they deeply understand each another.

    One thing that I’ve learned is that when a man is ready to start a family nothing will get in his way, it is rare to hear a man voicing how much he put his children and family first in his life, I do want to ask if there is any way you could try and work things out with your wife.

    Your story sound like there is some sort of communication issues that need to address… If not, I have another suggestion too 🙂

    Hope this helps


    #55664 Report



    Fact that you recognize it’s a shallow sounding offer funnily enough makes it seem less shallow.

    I’m on the other side of the fence but I hope my experience might shed a little light and be of use:

    My worse half left us some time ago for a better place approximately 200 miles away.He comes most Sundays to see the kids.And we’ve been doing this for many,(Many) years.I couldn’t have them going to him bc it was too much upheaval and he’s living in his mum’s spare room in a small flat and it was all too complicated and convoluted,as it sounds.And honestly as he was the one who left I saw no reason for the kids to have to make the journey to be honest.I understand lots of kids when they’re small get a bit confused as to where they really belong and I was determined from the outset that in our case we were gna be a solid family in one house minus dad.That’s all.I was also very pushy about him calling the kids.He’s got a lot of issues and didn’t understand or value the importance of a connection but my work’s paid off and most of them are comfortable calling him for help with homework etc when necc.He’ll send them stuff whenever they ask him and sometimes in between- I suppose there’s a bit of ‘cupboard love’ going on,but it’s gna happen.

    No,most likely your relationship will not be the same,how can it? One or two of my kids have also have grown up thinking fathers are a bit surplus to requirements,which I think is very sad but that’s what can happen.In short,I think you might  have to work really,really hard to keep a connection up and it depends on your exes attitude as well as to how difficult that might be.Frankly,the whole things awful.Sorry bout that.However hard it gets don’t just turn your back on your kids please,now or in 5 years,even if others tell you it’s not worth the work.Your kids only get one dad Ever & I don’t want to make you feel worse but it’s important to remember -wether we are choosing this or not-this is really impacting them…and never in a good way.So it’s important to make every effort to make the best of wellll….a not soooo good situation.👍

    #55665 Report


    I’ve just seen what F2021ran wrote.

    I couldn’t agree more.

    If you want to know what your kids are thinking listen to ‘Family Portrait’ by Pink.She knows what she’s talking about.😪

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