Single Parents

Blended families and uncooperative exes (Rant-y)

I've been a single mom for a long time now. My eldest's father left when she was 9 months old and I've since remarried and am expecting in January. DH is an amazing step-dad, has been since the day he entered the picture for which I am eternally grateful... The problem is that my daughter's father is...horrible. He didn't speak to us for a long time after he left, and then about a year ago he started coming back around. My daughter stayed with him every other weekend and things seemed to be going well. Then about a month ago, he sprang on us that he was moving. To Oregon. We live in Iowa. And then 10 days later he left without even saying goodbye to our little girl. She turns four next month and he won't even be back for that. I have no idea when he'll be back to see her or even if. Needless to say, my daughter is devastated. She's got me, she's got her step-dad, and she's got infinite unconditional love pouring from every section of our combined families...but she misses her daddy. I don' t know what to do to make her feel better; I feel so helpless. =( Anyone else ever have to deal with something like this? Any input I could get would be greatly appreciated, you ladies are amazing.
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Re: Blended families and uncooperative exes (Rant-y)

  • I'm sorry I don't have advice but this is exactly the reason why I don't want my ex involved in my baby's life when he or she is born. I don't want the baby feeling devastated when his or her father disposes of him/her once again as if it's nothing. I haven't talked to the ex since we broke up but I guess one day I will have to in order to make these decisions known to him. I think it would be easiest for me and baby to move on with our lives without him in it, even in one day looking for love again (it's far off but I guess you never know if or when you will find it). Again, I'm sorry I have no advice but your post really reaffirmed what I was thinking today. I saw the ex in town earlier (he now lives about 40 mins away) and I almost confronted him just to get some of these things out of the way but I decided I'm not ready. I don't know when I'll ever be ready.
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  • I was much older than your daughter when my parents split (about 9) and my dad moved to another state almost immediately after it was finalized. I was never super close to my dad so it didn't make me sad - more like angry that he was acting like he "lost the game" so he was going to do whatever he wanted now without considering me. It only furthered the distance between us. I'm sorry I don't really have any advice for you other than he obviously is putting himself before his daughter and she will realize that some day. In the meantime, maybe you could distract her with the people that ARE there for her like you and your husband. 
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  • I've always held out hope that he would grow up at some point and make our daughter the priority that she should be, but so far he hasn't. He's lost any chance at a real, meaningful relationship with her and one day he'll realize that. I just can't wrap my head around a father not wanting to be near his daughter, it simply does not compute for me. He'll realize his mistake when Eden asks her step-dad to walk her down the aisle at her wedding and not him. In the meantime, the only thing I really can do is try to distract her. He doesn't even make THAT easy, though. He calls to talk to her every couple days for three minutes and has said he would like her to visit over the summer (fat chance). So no chance for real catching up and bonding, just enough time to remind her that he's gone. Ugh. I hope this gets easier with time.
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  • I have yet to deal with this as parent but I had a similar situation growing up. As early as a year old, I would go years without any sort of contact with my father. He was sparatically in and out of my brother's life and when we were finally able to have somewhat of a stable relationship he would up and leave  the state or even country at times. Granted I am just about in my mid-twenties now, it still has a tendency to upset me quite a bit even knowing how I lacked a father figure  throughout my life. But more or less it made me appreciate how much dedication my mom would put into raising us along with the sacrifices as a single mom.

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