I’m so pleased to have found this charity, knowing there is a forum is a source of comfort.
I’m a single mum to a 3 year old, I work full-time and recently graduated a masters after falling pregnant half way through the qual.
I feel like I should be loving my life, and I’m not due to an increasingly strained relationship with my sons Dad. We were friends for many years before we got together, and he uses that. He uses you and we interchangeably which is confusing. We’re a team one day, and I’m on my own high and dry the next. He’s increasingly prioritising his new life and his expectant second child, spending one of his precious days this last fortnight with our son decorating the nursery for his new arrival. To add to this, the penny has dropped that children are expensive so he’s seeking new employment – which I don’t have a problem with in principle, but on shift patterns that make regular and consistent child arrangements near on impossible. When this is highlighted, I’m the big bad wolf for explaining I’m not paying for childcare for him not to go and it is me paying. Secondary to that I’m not messing about my family who have moved around their work patterns to help me. Again, that’s outrageous and I’m being difficult. I’m struggling to maintain perspective, am I being wildly unreasonable? Or is he? How do others approach talking to the other parent where their perceptions of conversations are just so wildly different from theres?
i think it’s really helpful if you can work together whilst you have an amicable relationship to find a pattern of childcare that suits you both. It does need to be a set pattern for the longer term as otherwise there will be complications leading to disappointment and arguments in the future. I understand your ex partner maybe reluctant to embrace this prior to securing a new job, however, it’s necessary. In your position, rather than feel like I’m letting my children down I’d ask ex partner what pattern they would like to see, apply that and cover the rest. That way you haven’t committed him to anything he hasn’t thought about or suggested himself. I suppose it’s worth pointing out that despite myself being primary carer for our 3 children, I work 30 hours and at times the kids have to attend school club. Likewise this maybe something that is necessary for dad. You can agree a pattern but that doesn’t necessarily mean he would be with the child 100% of the time. He could use a childcare facility or family to assist him just like you/I need to do. You just need to agree the days in principal
Thank you. You are right, I do rely on others. I guess I struggle with what was sold as the way it would work and the practice. They don’t align and the arrangements are only considered and reviewed when the other parent requires it. My attempts are always dismissed before discussion, for now I guess I keep on banging the drum that consistency and routine are important and just try and desensitise myself for being labelled the problem.