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Wed Jun 28 4:58 am  #21


Re: Reality

Tam,

All you can do for the kids is be yourself and be steady for them..let them know you'll be there for them.  We need to be steady and empathetic. ..even if we are crumbling inside. 
Teenagers deal with this worst than younger ones.  Its not our fault...these spouses did not think of the kids..only themselves.


"For we walk by faith, not by sight .."  2Corinthians 5:7
 

Wed Jun 28 5:00 am  #22


Re: Reality

Tamiam that's awful, I'm so glad your son is a bit better and hope both he and your daughter improve. These GIDs have a lot to answer for, not that all their offspring's issues are solely related to them but it certainly didn't help. You and they didn't ask for or deserve any of this, life is so cruel sometimes.

I've had times where I've been walking the streets late at night with my son trying to get on top of his anxiety and mild depression, of course my STBX is oblivious to it all.

I totally get the STBX being offended bit, I've exactly the same going on here, my eldest messaged him on 22nd Jan saying let her know if/when he'd like to video chat (different country), his reply, "will video chat soon"! Next she heard from him was over 4 months later and it was a snotty message about not being informed of something!!! These people really are a law onto their own. He and all his family are saying the kids aren't talking to him, none of them see it as his responsibility to rebuild their trust and that the onus is on him to keep reaching out to them. I say it that he's showing conditional love to them, conditional on their unconditional love for him, he can't see that that's not how a parent/child relationship works. They really are the personification of selfish, self serving, self centredness.

I do hope things get better for your children, that's all we can hope for going forward


Sometimes we are just the collateral damage in someone else's war against themselves
 

Wed Jun 28 11:19 am  #23


Re: Reality

Hi Tamiam,

I'm sorry about the kids.  I have a mentally ill son too, and it's been the biggest challenge of my life - the one thing that causes me the most amount of pain.  WAY worse than the gay ex situation.  At least with him, I have divorced and I have a completely separate life from him.  He doesn't cross my mind most days.  But my son?  My son has been out bumping around on the streets for 2 years now.  And that's because I won't allow him back home - because he is a wrecking ball to the family.  He has stolen from us, hurt us, disrespected us, called us all horrific names, brought drugs into the house, and we recently found out that he'd repeatedly molested my then 6 year-old daughter about 8 years ago.  There is no way I can ever allow him back into my home after knowing the last part.  And yet..... I love him.  I don't LIKE him, but I do love him.  He's my SON.  He's the baby I brought home and swore I'd protect with my life.  And yet..... I don't know from one day to the next if he's eating.  Or has shelter.  It's torturous.  I think of what he must be going through, and I want to cry.  What you are going through with your son and daughter are FAR bigger and more terrifying than what the gay ex thing will wind up being, in the end.

That all being said, you're doing everything in your power to help them.  There isn't anything (within your reach) that can be done that you aren't doing.  So many times we get wrapped up in thinking that if we were doing the right thing, this problem wouldn't exist.  Meaning that if you could find the right treatment, the right medication, this issue would disappear.  Don't fall into that trap.  It's NOT true.  If you had a child that was born with no legs, you would never think that for you to be doing the most you can, that he'd have legs.  He's never going to have legs.  It's physical, and you can see the issue.  The most you can do it help that child learn to be mobile with prosthetics, or a wheelchair.  You would try to keep them pain-free, mobile, healthy, happy, and highly confident.  We cannot see mental illness though, so we feel like we can FIX it.  But we can't.  All we can do it try to help our child learn to deal with life while suffering with this particular disability.  That means learning to function with depression and anxiety.  It's ALL you'll EVER be able to do for them.  It's a tough nut to wrap your mind around, because you don't want it to be the truth - you want your baby well and perfect.  But you can't do that - you aren't in charge of this.  It relies VERY much on THEM wanting to get better.  All you can do is provide the resources and encouragement for them to forge forward with their learning.  It'd be the same if your child had been born without legs - they'd still need to do the work of learning how to utilize their prosthetics, or their wheelchair.  The work is theirs to do.  You can only help them in that process.

I know that your gay ex and your kids' depression is intersecting right now.  You can't fix that, either.  All you can do is figure out how to best help them handle it.  One of those ways is counseling.  Another is being there for them when they need to talk.  Personally, I'd tell the last two kids about their dad, too.  One of the things that helped my kids the most about dealing with their dad coming out was being able to talk to each other about it.  They NEVER wanted to talk to me about it.  But they'd vent to each other - even though I never saw them doing that.  Sometimes the older kids are helped by the younger ones - they don't HAVE to make huge decisions about how they feel about the gay thing as much as they need to let their dad's behavior lead how they should feel about him and how much they trust him now.  The younger kids don't really understand sex and sexuality, so it's easier for them to accept this news now - when it doesn't really impact them.  They just grow up knowing he's gay, and judging him only for his behavior and actions toward them.

Stop interacting with your ex except through a lawyer.  He should have NO opportunity to whine to you about how hurt and offended he is that his kids don't want to be with him.  Do NOT answer the phone when it's him - let him text you or leave you a message.  Then you can choose to only respond to the topics that you find pertinent.  Which means you ignore his feelings and his self-centeredness and just concentrate on logistics.  It works wonders.  Once you start doing this, it'll get worse before it gets better.  But it WILL get better.  It's difficult to keep trying to yell at someone who doesn't appear to be listening.  If he's telling you these things in-person when he picks up / drops off the kids, then just nod and don't say anything.  He's wanting your pity.  Don't give it to him.  DO defend your kids where necessary.  NO, you're not going to force them to go with him - because it's THEIR choice.  End.of.story.  You don't need to describe for him why they feel the way they do.  It's not your job.  It's their perogative, and if they choose to not give him a concrete reason, then so be it.  You do not need to explain his behavior to them, or explain their behavior to him.  Let them handle their relationship except where it demands your intervention.

You're doing great, hon.  God did not give YOU these children - he sent these babies to the planet and put them under YOUR care because you are the best person for the job.  You are their teacher and protector.  They are with you because YOU are the best person in the whole world in all of time for them.  Remember that.  They were sent to you because THEY need YOU.  YOU are the expert on these kids.  No one but you.  You may feel like you're flailing, but you're the doing the best for them that anyone ever can.  God knew what He was doing when he sent them to earth through you. 

Kel


You are not required to set yourself on fire to keep other people warm.
 

Sun Jul 2 2:54 pm  #24


Re: Reality

update:  my son is out of the hospital and doing pretty well.  They were able to help regulate him in a way that I couldn't.  Like Kel said, I am doing absolutely everything in my power to help these kids. (And myself!) At some point, it has to be enough.  I have found mama bear within me and I truly don't think I will ever be the same.   

​I also have found legal services which I hope will be very helpful.  I called, filled out the forms, and made the appointment for July 20.  With these services, I will be able to file for custody, visitation, and child support.  My state has a mandatory one year separation requirement, before you can even file for divorce, then it may be another 8 months for the court date.  But this other way will protect the kids while that clocks ticks. 

​  

     Thread Starter
 

Mon Jul 3 6:45 am  #25


Re: Reality

Tam,
So glad to hear your kid is okay.

Small steps forward.  Seperation is good but make sure you have a legal parenting arrangement when seperated. My state wants it settled and done but it still took over a year as my gidx learned how a divorce works.

You are enough...you always were.  These spouses will see a fierce love, mama bear, call it what you will..our kids are living reminders of the love we gave and loyalty and strength we always had.  I cannot think of anything we did that was so horrible as to justify what out spouses did.


"For we walk by faith, not by sight .."  2Corinthians 5:7
 

Thu Jul 6 3:00 pm  #26


Re: Reality

Tam,

I'm so glad to hear that your son is doing better!  It's one day at time with anyone who has mental illness.  But if you're like me, you'll take the good days and celebrate a bit for them.    The bad come, and it is what it is.  You are doing ALL that you can.  You are loving him as hard as you can.  You are doing everything in your power to make your baby better.  That's all you can ever do.  The frustration lies in the fact that sometimes no amount of good intentions or hard work will do them any good.  But that's the nature of the beast.  It can be like pushing a boulder up a muddy hill.  Sometimes there's a rainstorm while you're pushing.  Sometimes it's a bit drier out.  Know that you have extreme fortitude and strength beyond what you think you are capable of.  You have tenacity that others just don't even understand.  You have to be your OWN cheerleader and be the same for others, too.  It's exhausting.  But you are doing it.  You have what it takes - but it's gonna take everything you've got.

See if you can find a support group or at least another individual that is experiencing something akin to what you are with your children.  I have one friend who went through similar things with her son that I did with mine (the kids knew each other).  Talking to her was so refreshing.  It wasn't uplifting in any way - she had the same struggles that I did.  But I wasn't alone.  I knew she was a good mom and her kid still had these problems.  It drove home to me that I'm not alone, I'm not at fault, and all we can do is keep trudging through.  With her though, I didn't have to describe my son's intentions or frame his actions in a way that didn't shock her.  She knew - deep in her bones - what I was talking about.  Much like we all here know how the gay thing affects us in a way that no other spouse experiences, even if they experience cheating.  It's unique.  Finding someone to hear you and laugh and cry with you are paramount to you keeping healthy.

Be well -

Kel


You are not required to set yourself on fire to keep other people warm.
 

Fri Jul 21 9:10 pm  #27


Re: Reality

STBX agreed to pay the right amount of child support!  So I marched myself right over to the courthouse to make it official and protect myself and my children.  I took an important step today in the paperwork for custody, visitation, and child support.  I spent several hours at the county courthouse getting everything started.  Ironic, since he left today for a out of the country vacation with his partner to celebrate their 1 year anniversary.  Yes, friends, I've officially entered the mad phase.  I kind of like it here.  Not forever, but in a get-'er-done kind of way. 

     Thread Starter
 

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