thread: will I stuff my kids up?

  1. #1
    Registered User

    Dec 2011

    will I stuff my kids up?


    I have two little ones, a 4 and a 2 year old. Boy and girl. I'm finding this single parenting thing so difficult sometimes. I get a bad case of the guilts regularly and am so hard on myself.

    Their Dad has them a few nights a week as do I and they're both loved and cared for so much. There's no fighting with us or a messy separation. He's a fantastic father. He just wasn't such a good partner for reasons I would rather not go into.

    But how on earth do you stop feeling so damn bad that your two kids have two homes, two beds, a set of parents that no longer live together? In the beginning, I was fine to give them up for a few nights but now as they drive away, I feel like I'm being stabbed through the heart. They are happy to go to him and happy when they return. The girl loves her Daddy and is very close with him, she will say she misses him when she gets into trouble from me.

    I know this is the case and it's the way it has to be. I should just accept this and move forward and do the best I can for my children.

    For those that separated when the children were quite young (like my little ones), were the kids alright? I honestly feel like I'm going to stuff their lives up big time!

    Thanks for listening.


  2. #2
    Senior Moderator

    Nov 2004

    I left when my children were 3 and 1. It was the best thing I ever did. Five years down the track... it's absolutely the best thing.

    You will get through it. You will.

  3. #3
    Registered User

    Dec 2011

    Thank you Divvy - I really appreciate the reply, I honestly do xxx

  4. #4
    BellyBelly Member

    Nov 2010
    Perth, WA

    I left when my DD was 2 - she stayed with her dad and would come stay with me on weekends. It was hard, I won't lie - but we got through. All of us. She is now 9 and a beautiful, happy girl. It really was the best thing for us, I've since married and she has a new baby brother that she absolutely adores. And a mummy who isn't sad or angry most of the time.

    Hang in there, you will be fine and so will your gorgeous kids.

  5. #5
    BellyBelly Member

    Apr 2006

    Other end of the spectrum - my Mum left with us when I was 18 months and my brother 3. No doubt in my mind that she did the right thing. I think its sad when any children's lives are upended by their parents divorcing, but that's a whole lot better than an unhappy mum and dad still living together.

  6. #6
    Registered User

    Jan 2006

    Don't think that you're getting out of stuffing your children up - as a parent, that's a responsibility you need to keep, whether you are with the father or not.

    FWIW, one of the ways my parents stuffed me up was my father being in and out of my life constantly, sometimes living with us sometimes not (work - 4-5m away with no visits and very rare phone calls, 3m home), and my mother whinging to me that she hated him and wanted to divorce him periodically, but never telling him that. I'd have been less stuffed up without that. If they were doing that and divorced it would have made a lot more sense.

  7. #7
    BellyBelly Member

    Nov 2011
    SE Melbourne

    as long as you stay calm and sensible, and don't bring the kids into "adult" disucssions, or make them make decisions that even adults could not you will do fine - and it sounds like you are doing just that!!

    All the kids I see who have trouble - are in families where the parents cannot stay calm with each other and insist on talking to the kids about stuff that has nothing to do with them.

    the fact that you are thinknig about it means that everything you do will be in the children's best interests - and that is the important thing - make sure the kids come first - and not using 'the kids need this' to satisfy your own needs. All the evidence for separated families is that the risk factors for kids ARE higher - there is no doubt, but if you stay strong and calm and do everything to keep it easy and calm for them - they will be fine. When you send them off know that this is good for them and you are doing it for them - that's what being a parent is -sacrifice for your child's sake.

    good luck and stay strong.

  8. #8
    BellyBelly Member

    Jul 2010

    Agreed. My parents divorced when my brother and I were very young. It was very hard for both parents, but especially mum as she was quite religious. However the toxic atmosphere when they were together was far worse than having two homes.

    I think it's wonderful that your little ones have two loving parents that they see often who can agree on care and be civil to each other. Took mine years to get to that point. And yet, I still think my bro and I are way more well-adjusted and grounded adults than some of my friends who had a 'traditional' family unit.

    Kids are amazingly adaptable, and families come in all shapes and sizes xo

  9. #9
    BellyBelly Member

    Mar 2008
    Kurri Kurri

    Yep I had little ones to when my exH and I first separated (1 and 3) but we separated on a very friendly basis. We still have that same friendliness now and it works for the kids. If one of us has imposed a grounding for bad behaviour then the other one carries it on at their place. Yes your heart breaks when they leave but you know they are going to a place where they will get all the same love and attention you give them. Take those days when they are not there to do something for yourself. That way you will still miss them but also will be busy. I volunteered at an op shop when they got older and went to preschool. That way I had adult conversation and felt like I was contributing something to the community.