Author Topic: My Story Reconnecting Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter  (Read 3484 times)

Offline The NavigatorTopic starter

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My Story Reconnecting Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« on: April 29, 2017, 07:18:18 AM »
Request for input

My Dad was visiting from England when our son was born last week.  He wanted to come at the time when DS was about to be born so that he could potentially "support us", i.e. look after DS7 and DS6 while I went in with W to the birthing unit.

Long story short: he had made some "other arrangements" with people he knows on the day that W actually got induced. The baby was a week late and the doctors gave her the option of inducing which she took because Dad was still here. At 4pm on the day of the induction he called me, asking if I was going to "come and take over" between 6pm and 7pm so that he could go and see some friends/load a trailer/pick up a grandfather clock that my Mum doesn't even want in the house.

I told Dad that we don't have any other babysitter.  He replied that he "didn't want to mess people around" i.e. those with whom he had made the arrangements.  I then asked him in manspeak if he expected me to leave W at the hospital to cope with the labour and birth by herself if we couldn't find any other babysitter, to which he replied "yes".  My wife heard the conversation with jaw dropped in disbelief.

From that moment on I wanted him out of our house and scrambled to find another babysitter. Fortunately it was a Friday evening and a friend of ours offered to come.  The only thing I could sense from Dad when I called to notify him was palpable relief.

On the one hand I'm extremely grateful to our friend for coming to the rescue, on the other I'm utterly furious with my Dad. A bunch of folk he barely knows were obviously more important to him than enabling his son to see his grandson come into the world, and for his son to provide his wife with much needed encouragement and emotional support. 

The rest of my family are mad at him too. I will be writing to him to let him know how dismayed I am.

I would be grateful for input as to the letter's content.

Dad is a complex character, he's 68 years old, former military man, loves his grandchildren but is very selfish sometimes and incapable of seeing and/or caring how his choices impact upon those closest to him. I've never once known him to admit fault for anything and, to be honest, there are rock formations with more emotional intelligence than him. He can see flaws in others but none in himself. His preferred tool of manipulation is the guilt trip and, to be honest, his ways are very probably the reason for my abominable husband skills when I was first married to my wife. He loves to look good and be "important".

He's getting a letter, this isn't me asking as to whether I should or shouldn't send one, I would simply love to know your input and know of no better people to ask than the members here.

Thanks for reading and replying!

The Navigator
« Last Edit: February 12, 2018, 02:42:29 PM by OldPilot »
Bomb & Separation: 28th January 2008
Moved in with OM for 5 months
EA/PA persisted from 2008 to 2010
Kids: DS ( 9 ), DD ( 8 ) confirmed mine with paternity tests
Another DS born April 2017
MLC lasted 6-7 years

Offline Ready2Transform

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #1 on: April 29, 2017, 09:04:06 AM »
Dear Dad,

You and I don't share the same experiences and opinions on certain things. I am disappointed in how you acted while you were here, but since you are not responsible for my feelings, I will process it and move on. After all, I have a new child and a restored marriage and those things are much greater than the stress you caused that day, even though at the time it was a dark shadow on a very happy event.

It is a great relief we are both adults now and don't require each other to change for the other. But do know that moving forward, I will make choices according to your past actions, and that will cost you time and responsibility in my life that would have likely caused you joy.


I am not trying to be harsh, Navigator. I think you likely want us to see how unfair that was, and we do. It WAS unfair. But there is nothing that can change that event now. You have processed through so much already with your wife's MLC. Pick your battles from here on out. If you had a crystal ball and knew that you only had a short time on this planet left with your father, would it change the conversation? How would you want your own kids to forgive you for the shortcomings you will have in their lives?



"Unconditional love is the highest of high standards, and while we are letting go of our need to control the process of anyone else, we are taking within our lives complete accountability for our own experience."

http://seriousvanity.com/how-to-cultivate-unconditional-love-and-change-the-world/

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #2 on: April 29, 2017, 09:46:00 AM »
Uhmmm mad,furious, slightly pissed? You might say I would be..he's selfish and self centered. REALLY?? You are supposed to leave your wife at a time like that??

I'm here to at least let you know I'm in favor of whatever way you decide to handle this as long as you tell him just what you think and it's the truth.

Ready is probably putting it a whole lot nicer than I would.. so I'd keep it short to the point and I hope that purges you of the disappointment, upset, and anger you must feel..
There are two ways of spreading light:
Be the candle; or the mirror that reflects it

Don't ask why someone is still hurting you; ask why you keep letting them.

Women are NOT rehabilitation centers for badly raised men. It is not your job to fix ,parent, raise or change him.
You want a partner not a project.

Offline The NavigatorTopic starter

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #3 on: April 29, 2017, 09:57:08 AM »
R2T, Thank you so much for responding.

It was indeed "unfair" but I do genuinely want some input from the posters here.  I haven't asked anyone else because I can't think of a better crowd than here.

I love my dad, know that he's never changing in this life or the next, and accepted that long ago.

It's this specific instance, this particular behaviour, which has upset me a great deal. And I feel I'd be a sissy if I didn't bring it to his attention that I'm disappointed. Not communicating it to him would be wrong in my book.  I'm just going to take several sleeps to figure out how to word it though.

Thanks again, R2T

Bomb & Separation: 28th January 2008
Moved in with OM for 5 months
EA/PA persisted from 2008 to 2010
Kids: DS ( 9 ), DD ( 8 ) confirmed mine with paternity tests
Another DS born April 2017
MLC lasted 6-7 years

Offline OffRoad

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #4 on: April 29, 2017, 07:02:56 PM »
Navigator, you get to have those emotions, you get to feel angry and you get to express them.

Dear Dad,
I was so happy you came to visit and appreciated the time you spent with my family. It was unfortunate that my wife's induced labor coincided with previous plans you had made. I was disappointed when i thought i could depend on you to watch the children while I was with my wife, but found i was wrong. It caused me great stress and worry to have to try to find a baby sitter at the last moment.
I am saddened that it couldn't have been different, but what's done is done, and I now know that your priorities may not  lie with what is best for me and my family. I will choose better the next time I need someone I can depend on. Lesson learned.

As always,
Your son.
When life gives you lemons, make SALSA!

Offline The NavigatorTopic starter

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #5 on: May 02, 2017, 12:04:46 AM »
Uhmmm mad,furious, slightly pissed? You might say I would be..he's selfish and self centered. REALLY?? You are supposed to leave your wife at a time like that??

I'm here to at least let you know I'm in favor of whatever way you decide to handle this as long as you tell him just what you think and it's the truth.

Ready is probably putting it a whole lot nicer than I would.. so I'd keep it short to the point and I hope that purges you of the disappointment, upset, and anger you must feel..

In It, thank you so much for your input.

I still haven't written the letter yet but I must.  It won't change him, I'm very sure it won't make him "say sorry" and he'll likely try and guilt trip me because he did look after our other two kids for a few hours so W and I could run some errands but....... I would gladly have forfeited all of that so that he'd be around when it really mattered i.e. when W was getting induced.

Haven't rung him since the baby was born.  Dad came by a few days later for 40 minutes to hold and cuddle him but that's it.  He also suggest bringing his friend's 19 year old daughter who apparently "loves babies" and seemed surprised when we told him in no uncertain terms no to bring her.  We don't know her from a bar of soap.

W didn't want Dad to drop by at all.

Will get this letter in the post this week, and keep it very, very brief.  Like a tweet.
« Last Edit: May 02, 2017, 12:06:29 AM by The Navigator »
Bomb & Separation: 28th January 2008
Moved in with OM for 5 months
EA/PA persisted from 2008 to 2010
Kids: DS ( 9 ), DD ( 8 ) confirmed mine with paternity tests
Another DS born April 2017
MLC lasted 6-7 years

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #6 on: May 02, 2017, 10:48:43 AM »
Please don't put it off or overthink it Navigator..you need to express how let down you felt by his lack of support. Again this isn't to change him It's for you.
Your W is justified in feeling the way she does.
There are two ways of spreading light:
Be the candle; or the mirror that reflects it

Don't ask why someone is still hurting you; ask why you keep letting them.

Women are NOT rehabilitation centers for badly raised men. It is not your job to fix ,parent, raise or change him.
You want a partner not a project.

Offline The NavigatorTopic starter

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #7 on: May 03, 2017, 12:28:39 PM »
Navigator, you get to have those emotions, you get to feel angry and you get to express them.

Dear Dad,
I was so happy you came to visit and appreciated the time you spent with my family. It was unfortunate that my wife's induced labor coincided with previous plans you had made. I was disappointed when i thought i could depend on you to watch the children while I was with my wife, but found i was wrong. It caused me great stress and worry to have to try to find a baby sitter at the last moment.
I am saddened that it couldn't have been different, but what's done is done, and I now know that your priorities may not  lie with what is best for me and my family. I will choose better the next time I need someone I can depend on. Lesson learned.

As always,
Your son.

Thanks very much for your input, OffRoad
Bomb & Separation: 28th January 2008
Moved in with OM for 5 months
EA/PA persisted from 2008 to 2010
Kids: DS ( 9 ), DD ( 8 ) confirmed mine with paternity tests
Another DS born April 2017
MLC lasted 6-7 years

Offline The NavigatorTopic starter

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #8 on: May 03, 2017, 12:59:40 PM »
Right then.

Once again, thank you so much to all of you for offering some input.  Here is the letter which I have drafted and will be posted tomorrow.  It should get to Dad by Saturday:

Dear Dad,

There's no easy way to say this but I'm afraid I'm very dismayed about our conversation on 21st April as W was about to give birth. When we spoke at 4pm that day you asked me if I was going to come and "take over" so you could run whatever errands you had planned/see whichever people you had planned to meet.  I asked you directly if you expected me to leave W at the hospital to cope with the labour and birth herself if we were unable to find another babysitter and your answer was "yes".  W was well and truly into labour by then so I had to frantically scramble to ring anyone I could think of to babysit.  It's only by sheer luck that C and her daughter were able to come and look after DS7 and DD6.

The only thing I sensed from you when I called to let you know was palpable relief. Without C I would have been quite unable to provide my wife with much needed emotional support and would have missed cutting the cord, seeing our son, your son's son, come into the world.

You will no doubt hate getting this letter from me but it has to be written or I am going to be mad indefinitely, possibly for years.  The message I got was that these folk you've befriended in Bavaria in recent years are more important to you than your own immediate family. Yes, you babysat DS7 and DD6 a number of times while you were here, spent time with them and bought all of us lunch.  I am very grateful for that and would gladly have forfeited it all if I could have been sure you'd be around when I needed you most.

I worked on the basis, wrongly as it turned out, that you'd be willing and able to look after DS7 and DD6 during the period you were "around" for as long as necessary whilst your grandson was being born.  C told me the next day that she and her mother
(my cousin's aunt from her other side and part of a group of people that Dad has befriended) were rather taken aback that you found it so necessary to go that evening.  I'm sure these people you were scheduled to meet would have entirely understood if you couldn't come and knew the reasons why. That is, if they're worth being friends with at all.

This letter is for me, Dad.  I must write it.  It doesn't change the fact that I love you and miss you - I've always loved you and have missed you since I first went to boarding school aged 11.

Take care, be well and lots of love,

The Navigator


This letter or a doctored version thereof is going out in tomorrow's post.

I rang my Mum tonight.  I didn't tell her I was going to write but did let her know I would be letting Dad know how I felt.  She urged me to "let it lie" but placating, appeasing and "pretending everything's OK when it sure ain't" just isn't in my DNA.  Mum has bitten her tongue for the best part of 40 years and I do not want the results of doing that.
Bomb & Separation: 28th January 2008
Moved in with OM for 5 months
EA/PA persisted from 2008 to 2010
Kids: DS ( 9 ), DD ( 8 ) confirmed mine with paternity tests
Another DS born April 2017
MLC lasted 6-7 years

Offline Airmid

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #9 on: May 03, 2017, 01:14:54 PM »
Navigator -
Honestly, your father's behavior was despicable.
I am surprised you even want to close the letter with how much you love him.
But certainly let him know your feelings about the matter.
Air

Offline OffRoad

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #10 on: May 03, 2017, 01:17:33 PM »
That was very well written.
« Last Edit: May 03, 2017, 01:18:42 PM by OffRoad »
When life gives you lemons, make SALSA!

Offline The NavigatorTopic starter

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #11 on: May 03, 2017, 01:33:17 PM »
Navigator -
Honestly, your father's behavior was despicable.
I am surprised you even want to close the letter with how much you love him.
But certainly let him know your feelings about the matter.
Air

Thanks for coming, Airmid.

Well I do love my Dad.  I certainly don't love his behaviour but I do love him - the person.

I'm undecided about how I'll close the letter - I'll probably change it and keep the ending more "sachlich" (can't think of a good way to say it in English - "business like" is the nearest translation).  The letter is for me though, not him - I don't expect an apology, him to change, any of that. 
Bomb & Separation: 28th January 2008
Moved in with OM for 5 months
EA/PA persisted from 2008 to 2010
Kids: DS ( 9 ), DD ( 8 ) confirmed mine with paternity tests
Another DS born April 2017
MLC lasted 6-7 years

Offline Thunder

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #12 on: May 03, 2017, 02:50:03 PM »
I would just say if these were your honest feelings, then it's perfect. 
A quote from a recovered MLCer: 
"From my experience if my H had let me go a long time ago, and stop pressuring me, begging, and pleading and just let go I possibly would have experienced my awakening sooner than I did."

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #13 on: May 04, 2017, 12:49:02 AM »
Looks good to me..
There are two ways of spreading light:
Be the candle; or the mirror that reflects it

Don't ask why someone is still hurting you; ask why you keep letting them.

Women are NOT rehabilitation centers for badly raised men. It is not your job to fix ,parent, raise or change him.
You want a partner not a project.

Offline The NavigatorTopic starter

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #14 on: May 04, 2017, 01:07:13 PM »
OK. The letter is written and ready to go in tomorrow's post.

I'm sad. I love my Dad, he was a great father to us when we were very small and his grandchildren love him too.  He was way out of his depth once my sister and I became teenagers.  It's this specific incident during the birth which has driven me around the twist for the past fortnight. Who wouldn't cancel their plans so that their son could support his wife while she births a other grandchild for them?

He's not a nasty bloke, just can be very self absorbed sometimes and have no idea how his actions affect those closest to him. It's as if he has blind spots in his thinking, which I suppose we all do. He's great with small children and animals, less good with humans once they develop a mind of their own.

I know this letter has the potential to cause a ruckus but I need him to know how I feel about it! Placating, appeasing, "sucking it up" and The Navigator don't go together!
Bomb & Separation: 28th January 2008
Moved in with OM for 5 months
EA/PA persisted from 2008 to 2010
Kids: DS ( 9 ), DD ( 8 ) confirmed mine with paternity tests
Another DS born April 2017
MLC lasted 6-7 years

Offline Airmid

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #15 on: May 04, 2017, 06:31:06 PM »

Thanks for coming, Airmid.

Well I do love my Dad.  I certainly don't love his behaviour but I do love him - the person.

You did the right thing Nav - you expressed yourself and your feelings.
LBSers are the masters of "sucking it up".
Breaking the habit shows real growth.

BTW - I read a lot of threads - including yours - I just don't comment a lot.
But reading that nonsense about your dad and the birth of your child - --
well that just got to me.   >:( >:( >:(

Anyway - congratulations on the new baby!!!!

Offline The NavigatorTopic starter

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #16 on: May 05, 2017, 12:37:35 AM »
OK.

The letter has been sent.  I ended it stating I expected nothing as a result of writing it but that I would of course be glad if he were to consider what I've written in an objective way.  I expressed hope that he had had a pleasant journey home

I have zero expecations, absolutely none, except that he'll get in a huff and my Mum will probably bear the brunt of it.  No wonder she wanted me to "let it lie".

I've slept several nights on this - wondering if I should write or not.  Dad is 68, on lots of different medications and every time I see him I wonder if it's going to be the last time.  I thought I might regret writing the letter but also thought I might regret not writing the letter.  Saying what I needed to say would have been impossible over the phone without Dad either getting in a huff, twisting things, booking me on a guilt trip or changing the subject.

Why has this been such a big deal for me?  It feels like I'm confronting my very own inner core, basic conditioning from very early on in my life. 

But it's done now and that's that.
« Last Edit: May 05, 2017, 12:40:43 AM by The Navigator »
Bomb & Separation: 28th January 2008
Moved in with OM for 5 months
EA/PA persisted from 2008 to 2010
Kids: DS ( 9 ), DD ( 8 ) confirmed mine with paternity tests
Another DS born April 2017
MLC lasted 6-7 years

Offline The NavigatorTopic starter

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #17 on: May 17, 2017, 08:02:49 AM »
Got a letter back from my Dad which he had typed out and printed.

Predictably caustic and mocking in tone including:
  • A lecture on the 7 Ps
  • The fact that he found the notion of me pacing around being mad "hilarious"
  • That it would, however, have been "less funny" for my wife had we not found an extra babysitter
  • Other lectures about poor organisation etc.

Comforting to know some things shan't change for the rest of Eternity.  Perhaps I'll type it out and post it here.

Haven't spoken to him since the baby came which is nearly a month ago.
Bomb & Separation: 28th January 2008
Moved in with OM for 5 months
EA/PA persisted from 2008 to 2010
Kids: DS ( 9 ), DD ( 8 ) confirmed mine with paternity tests
Another DS born April 2017
MLC lasted 6-7 years

Offline Thunder

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #18 on: May 17, 2017, 08:12:51 AM »
Oh boy, I'm sorry he couldn't see the error of his ways but then you didn't expect him to.

Life goes on as usual.
How's the baby doing?
A quote from a recovered MLCer: 
"From my experience if my H had let me go a long time ago, and stop pressuring me, begging, and pleading and just let go I possibly would have experienced my awakening sooner than I did."

Offline pacasam

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #19 on: May 17, 2017, 11:47:39 AM »
Nav...keep the reminder of his letter of how not to be in the present and future!! Of course don't let him know that because then he'll think he's a role model!
:(
Me 53
H 58
No kids
known each other 29 years
Married on 10/19/1991
BD 2/18/17

Offline HopeFaithLove

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #20 on: May 17, 2017, 06:38:55 PM »
That's why I don't bother trying to enlighten my dad. He just doesn't get it. He hears what he wants to hear, thinks only of himself and wants to control everything and everyone. Unfortunately he lives with me and sometimes I want to kick him out. Maybe some day I will. All I can do is stand firm in what I want and if he gets mad too bad. He can leave if he doesn't like it. It's really hard when you're a successful 50 yr old and your dad still thinks you can't manage your life.
And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love. 1 Cor 13:13

Offline Airmid

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #21 on: May 17, 2017, 07:09:05 PM »
Sad response from you Father.
How would I deal with it?

I would stop pursing a relationship with my Father and let him initiate.
I would be prepared that if he didn't initiate contact, communication etc - that I would have to accept that - and let the relationship lie dormant.

There comes a point in an adults life where we stop being the child.
You are a full adult -  a parent yourself.
Your father is trivializing your feelings and treating you like a child.
Further more - his behavior is abusive and cruel.

He may be biologically your father - but he is not acting like a parent.
You owe him nothing at this point.

Letting people own the consequences for their actions is something we learn in this MLC hell.
It applies to everyone - not just the MLCer.
Actions have consequences.

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #22 on: May 17, 2017, 07:18:35 PM »
I find it such a shame that something that ought to be a joy in every ones life creates this kind of problem.

Weddings, funerals, birth of babies these things in life IMHO should bring people together. Whether its in celebration, joy of a new life or in grieving the loss of a loved one.

These events seem to bring out the worst in some people.

There are two ways of spreading light:
Be the candle; or the mirror that reflects it

Don't ask why someone is still hurting you; ask why you keep letting them.

Women are NOT rehabilitation centers for badly raised men. It is not your job to fix ,parent, raise or change him.
You want a partner not a project.

Offline UrsaMajor

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #23 on: May 18, 2017, 07:25:22 AM »
A lecture on the 7 P's?

Are you freaking serious?

That is what you did when you agreed that he would come to help!

In good German, ich bin jetzt stinksauer!

I agree with Air -

Yes, you love your dad. That goes without saying ... but loving someone does NOT mean accepting what they do all the time, especially when it is not in your best interests.

Air said to let him open the communication and I agree. When I read your post of his response, my blood boiled.

I have to say that, in my case, my dad was a toxic alcoholic so I had very infrequent communication with him that dwindled off until he died, but I guess it is really a matter of expectations, isn't it?  We expect our parents to behave in certain ways... OK, the baby decided that he liked hanging around so that is not your dad's fault that Dad only had a certain amount of time but his reaction and his planning leaves a lot to be desired... Like you said, a real friend would have understood. The only person Dad was messing about was you...

You are no longer the little boy he knew and could steamroll over. You've made the transition to the adult world. His image of you hasn't.  therefore, he sees it somehow appropriate to be callous. After all, he probably did the same thing to your mom (took off instead of supporting her at the hospital - although in his day, dads were kept away from the actual birth as I understand for the most part)

He will have to deal with the consequences of his actions... Accountability is a real drag sometimes.
Me - 55
MLC - 47
Together 20 years - Married for 17 at separation
S - 11
D - 8
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BD#1 - August 2015
Atomic BD - 13 Dec 2015
House sold and separated - March 2016
Mid-Lifer has filed for D

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A "friend" will not "stand by you" no matter what you do. That is NOT a friend. That is an enabler. That is an accomplice.
A REAL friend will sit you down and tell you to your face to stop being a firetrucking idiot before you ruin your life and the lives of those around you.

Offline The NavigatorTopic starter

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #24 on: May 18, 2017, 08:06:11 AM »
Thank you so much for replying everybody.

A lecture on the 7 P's?

Are you freaking serious?
Yep.

Because the day and time of birth is 100% predictable after all.  We had asked folk if they could help in the weeks beforehand, but you never really know until labour actually starts.

Anyone ever had someone not show up when they agreed to help you move house, for example?

That is what you did when you agreed that he would come to help!
Apparently that was only valid for the first two weeks of his visit.

In good German, ich bin jetzt stinksauer!
Stinksauer, wütend und zugleich auch resigniert.  Ich hätte nichts anderes von ihm erwartet als genau diese Antwort.

Yes, you love your dad. That goes without saying ... but loving someone does NOT mean accepting what they do all the time, especially when it is not in your best interests.
I certainly don't accept his assertion that he'd expect me to abandon W at the hospital if we weren't able to find another babysitter.  I told him as much which he wouldn't have liked at all.  Being a retired military man, he most likely looks at me as a "subordinate" still - and I can assure you I'm absolutely no one's subordinate.

I'm just really glad we found someone quickly.

Air said to let him open the communication and I agree. When I read your post of his response, my blood boiled.
He can  get in touch when he's good and ready.

I shan't be initiating any contact.

My sister described our Dad quite aptly as "dysfunction lite".  Maybe it's pure dysfunction but if so, I would be completely blind to that.

You are no longer the little boy he knew and could steamroll over.
Hell no.

Perish the thought.

You've made the transition to the adult world.
Over two decades ago.

Thank God.

After all, he probably did the same thing to your mom (took off instead of supporting her at the hospital - although in his day, dads were kept away from the actual birth as I understand for the most part)
He was at my birth.

Mum said he cried because he was so happy to have a little boy.

He wasn't at my younger sisters' births.  The hospitals were miles away and he had to look after us.

I gave up trying to figure Dad out decades ago.  Just kept interactions cordial, superficial and "distant".

I've been reminded of why I did that all those years ago.
Bomb & Separation: 28th January 2008
Moved in with OM for 5 months
EA/PA persisted from 2008 to 2010
Kids: DS ( 9 ), DD ( 8 ) confirmed mine with paternity tests
Another DS born April 2017
MLC lasted 6-7 years

Offline The NavigatorTopic starter

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #25 on: May 19, 2017, 11:59:46 PM »
I find it such a shame that something that ought to be a joy in every ones life creates this kind of problem.

Weddings, funerals, birth of babies these things in life IMHO should bring people together. Whether its in celebration, joy of a new life or in grieving the loss of a loved one.

These events seem to bring out the worst in some people.

Hey in it,

Yes, I couldn't agree with you more. These events can bring people together and can also expose the cracks existing in the bonds between family members.

My Dad referred to all of this as a "spat" in his letter but I see it much more as a clash of value systems and world views.

Baby is going to be one month old on Sunday. He's so unbelievably cute!!
Bomb & Separation: 28th January 2008
Moved in with OM for 5 months
EA/PA persisted from 2008 to 2010
Kids: DS ( 9 ), DD ( 8 ) confirmed mine with paternity tests
Another DS born April 2017
MLC lasted 6-7 years

Offline The NavigatorTopic starter

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #26 on: August 09, 2017, 08:07:43 AM »
Hello again,

This matter has "come to life" again.

Mum and Dad are planning to visit Germany in September 2017, will stay with my cousin and visit other people, but my wife does not want my Dad to come to our house at all.  She's mad at herself for letting him come the day after the birth of our little baby in April 2017 after everything that happened the day he was born.

I get where she's coming from.

I also haven't initiated any contact with Dad for over three months, the longest I've been without speaking with him.

W doesn't want our children to see him either, and this is the bit I'm conflicted about.  She told me I would be "weak" if I didn't "take a stand" and let a bad deed go unpunished.

I cannot make her want to see my Dad or even allow him in the house, but he hasn't offended our kids and they do love their Grandad.  I don't see anything wrong with taking them to see him at a neutral location.

Any input?  I'm completely at a loss here and my neck and back have been tense for weeks.

I know this is also off topic.  Sorry about that.
Bomb & Separation: 28th January 2008
Moved in with OM for 5 months
EA/PA persisted from 2008 to 2010
Kids: DS ( 9 ), DD ( 8 ) confirmed mine with paternity tests
Another DS born April 2017
MLC lasted 6-7 years

Offline UrsaMajor

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #27 on: August 09, 2017, 08:18:08 AM »
Hard to say....

My FIL(RIP) was the party guy and my son loved him... He was also an NPD Mid-Lifer who could not be trusted any father than I could throw him so we also met him however on neutral territory.

I disagree with the "weak" comment... That is just playing the guilt card in my view..  How long should he be punished for being a jerk?  He is old and will not be around forever.  I understand that she is still hurt/angry at his behavior and justifiably so but, at some point, if there is to be any kind of reconciliation or reconnection, someone has to make the first step....

Question: Has your dad tried to make contact with you? How do you know they are coming and what their plans are?  That might also be an indicator... If you are getting this info from others, then maybe the break is mutual and you don't have to see him <just a thought>

However, you are right, you can not make W want to see him but I agree that you can't punish your kids by NOT letting them see him if they want to. If they know hes coming, then they will probably want to see him...

Hard call....
Me - 55
MLC - 47
Together 20 years - Married for 17 at separation
S - 11
D - 8
2 Canines (each of us has one)
BD#1 - August 2015
Atomic BD - 13 Dec 2015
House sold and separated - March 2016
Mid-Lifer has filed for D

Survival Instructions for Newbies
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A "friend" will not "stand by you" no matter what you do. That is NOT a friend. That is an enabler. That is an accomplice.
A REAL friend will sit you down and tell you to your face to stop being a firetrucking idiot before you ruin your life and the lives of those around you.

Offline Thunder

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #28 on: August 09, 2017, 08:22:36 AM »
I agree with you.  He doesn't need to come to your house and she doesn't need to see him, but why keep the kids away from him?

Yes, it may punish him but it will also punish the kids because they love him.
Kids should never be used as a punishment.

I'm with you on this one.  Maybe just tell her you understand how she feels but you're only doing it for the kids, not for your dad.
A quote from a recovered MLCer: 
"From my experience if my H had let me go a long time ago, and stop pressuring me, begging, and pleading and just let go I possibly would have experienced my awakening sooner than I did."

Online Mitzpah

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #29 on: August 09, 2017, 08:33:04 AM »
Navigator,

The verse for today is:
Quote
VERSE OF THE DAY
August 9
Proverbs 19:11
11 A person’s wisdom yields patience; it is to one’s glory to overlook an offense.

 ;)

Having come from a family where grudges held had sad consequences, I am always in favor of making sure bridges are passable and rebuilding them if necessary. We are only given today.

I can certainly understand your wife's reluctance to receive your father. I can understand your children's desire to see their grandad too. You are in a difficult quandary, I think you will have to try and come to an agreement with your wife without hurting her even more.

I agree that you should be able to take the kids to see him in a neutral location too.

Yuck, none of this is fun. :(
M 57
H 57
S 26
S 25
D 24
BD 13 Dec 2010
Divorced 27 Feb 2015 (30 years marriage)

"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future" Jeremiah 29:11

Offline pacasam

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #30 on: August 09, 2017, 08:39:59 AM »
I kind of agree with everybody.  I feel he shouldn't be allowed to the house, but at the same time you and your kids should be allowed to see him.  Your W doesn't have a right to not allow you to see your own dad.  I think a limit to that boundary needs to be set on her. 

If my H and I get back together after his MLC, that's a boundary I plan on setting on him with at least the one S of his that has some of my stuff still and is refusing to return it.  She won't be allowed to my residence, but I realize I can't refuse to allow him to see his family.
:(
Me 53
H 58
No kids
known each other 29 years
Married on 10/19/1991
BD 2/18/17

Online in it

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #31 on: August 09, 2017, 02:52:42 PM »
I agree. Take the kids to go see him.
There are two ways of spreading light:
Be the candle; or the mirror that reflects it

Don't ask why someone is still hurting you; ask why you keep letting them.

Women are NOT rehabilitation centers for badly raised men. It is not your job to fix ,parent, raise or change him.
You want a partner not a project.

Offline OffRoad

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #32 on: August 09, 2017, 09:29:47 PM »
My question is : Do your kids want to see Grandfather?  Or do you just think they do? That would drive my answer.

If you've never asked, you should. You could be using the kids as an excuse to see your father. That would not be cool, but only you will know that.  The kids might be angry with Grandpa. After all, you had to frantically take them elsewhere, and it had to be apparant to the kids that Grandpa didn't want to stay with them. The kids may be ambivalent. If so, is it worth hurting your wife? Because you will. The kids may really, really want to see him. Your wife ought to understand that.

I'm of a different mind than most, I believe. I don't love out of obligation. Just because someone is a blood relative, it doesn't mean I automatically love them. Love is reserved for those who make my world a better place for them being in it.

Here are the only facts I can see from what you have writren: your wife doesn't want your father around her or the children. She is still angry, and being as it's only been a few months, understandable. You haven't mentioned what kind of give and take conversation you have had about this with her.

You have every right to go see him, if  that is what you choose to do. If the kids, by their own choice, want to see him, you should  negotiate a way to make that happen with your wife. If the kids, by their own choice, do NOT want to see him, that should be respected, IMO.

Be aware that if you choose to see him, or if the children go with you, you wife will likely feel like you put your dad ahead of her feelings.  It won't feel good to her. Every action we choose has an effect because we don't live in individual bubbles. If seeing your father and/or taking the kids to see him is more important on your scale than your wife's feelings (and it could be, we all have choices to make every day), then you accept that you may cause her pain in order to see a man you have described as having a cordial and distant relationship with.

I'm not trying to guilt you into choosing one direction or the other. I'm pointing out that the choices we make affect other people, and we have to live knowing that we have affected them. Weighing all sides would be prudent. Having an adult conversation with your wife on the whys and wherefores of why you think it would be the best thing for the family if you and/or the kids went to see him is important. Making sure the kids care one way or the other is a necessity.

As always, JMO
When life gives you lemons, make SALSA!

Offline Silver

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #33 on: August 10, 2017, 01:41:15 AM »
Hi Navigator,

I have been balancing between my parents and W more or less from the beginning of my relationship. It is a hard place to be as you can not choose your parents (no matter how they are) and like your spouse them or not, you still love them. I have decided to get my children to see them often enough and let my W decide herself if she comes along or not. Not pressuring her. Usually she does not. I still think my children have the right to see them and opposite and that it is important for me to keep them in my life. She has her reasons but it is still not something I should define my or my kids relationship with them trough.

I would say, though it is not easy one for you, respect your W's decision not to see him herself but use your right to see him as he is your father still. Same goes for your kids, he is their grandfather and IF THEY want to see him they should imo.

About your father's letter, sorry mate, really harsh...
You told your F is very self focused and not cabable to see his own mistakes. He is at his late years and if he was always like that, he won't change. Don't waste your time, just let him know  that it is still wrong what he did regardless what he actually thinks about it.
Like "you made mistake dad, face it or not" and thats it for military man, no need to explain any further...

Just my 2 cents here :) Thought I would reply as I hear some similarities in your W's and F's relationship with you between them as my W's and M's. Not easy place to be mate.



 

"I've seen dreams that move the mountains, hope that doesn't ever end even when the sky is falling. I've seen miracles just happen, silent prayers get answered, broken hearts become brand new. That's what faith can do." Kutless

Offline TryinSoul

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #34 on: August 10, 2017, 05:44:47 AM »
Nav-  I share Offroad's sentiment with regards to relatives.  Is he the type of person you would give your love to if he was not your father.  You chose your W, you didn't have a choice on who your father was.  We all forget it's truly a choice and most people take advantage of that.  It's why people rarely change, because they feel they are loved and love out of obligation. 
Get everything out in the open and find the truths from everyone, then make a decision with those you chose to share your life with.
All that counts, is what comes next.

Offline The NavigatorTopic starter

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #35 on: August 18, 2017, 12:11:54 AM »
Hi everybody,

Thank you so much for all your responses.  Dad and I have been communicating again, over email, as he had heard from my Mum that we aren't ready to have him come over to the house.  The email exchange has been pretty heated, blunt and head-to-head.

Tell me something guys.  Am I nuts?  Am I a bit loopy?  Is my wife's and my emotional reaction appropriate?

There's only one thing I'm angry about really and that is that he would have insisted I came home on the night our son was born, as my wife was in labour, had we been unable to get someone else to come.  It just exposed how different we see the world and the notion of family.  That's the core of this.  I have asked Mum and Dad for virtually nothing since I left home 20 years ago.  The thought of having to rely on anyone, especially for money or favours, sends a shiver down my spine.

After he called as W was in labour I was thinking to myself, "Dad has other plans, I need to get someone ASAP because because if I really do have to go home then we're going to end up not speaking for years".

Dad did send an itinerary to me before he came, detailing where he would be and on what days, and he insists childcare arrangements for the time he was not around were "none of his business".  He's of the mind that we "had a contingency plan we invoked, the kids were looked after, and W was not left at the hospital by himself".  He also said he "had to go" and "time was running out".

He wants me to "see common sense and get on with life", whatever that entails.

I am going to call him today.  Email isn't a good medium for this and, to be dirt honest, the issue isn't resolvable anyway as it's a clash of world views, frames of reference, and values.

W insists that he is not to come to the house and that the kids aren't to see him either.

I agree he shouldn't come to the house this time, W says she wants to "pass on this visit", but I will go and see him at a neutral location.

I know I'm blind, I've got all three parts of my triune brain firing in different directions and that my ability to have any objective perception is non-existent.

At the moment W is resolute about the kids not seeing him but I do not agree with this.  However, I've dropped the issue for the time being because the children will be much more effective than me at persuading W that they be allowed to see their Grandad.

Mum, being the classic conflict avoider, appeaser and peacemaker, just wants this "resolved".  She knows how Dad gets when his authority, position or ego is challenged and unlike me she still lives with him.

If I'm being out of line or "crazy" then please tell me.  I feel like I'm trying to navigate through a forest in thick pea-soup fog.

Thanks for listening!
Bomb & Separation: 28th January 2008
Moved in with OM for 5 months
EA/PA persisted from 2008 to 2010
Kids: DS ( 9 ), DD ( 8 ) confirmed mine with paternity tests
Another DS born April 2017
MLC lasted 6-7 years

Offline Silver

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #36 on: August 18, 2017, 12:53:51 AM »
Hi Navigator. How come you were nuts being angry for your father who let you down when you most needed him? It wasn't about you asking him to come to babysit because you wanted to go bowling with guys but because you and your wife were having a baby and you needed to be there!

Don't let him to feel it was your fault in any way mate. He may (and probably will) disagree with you with this till the end but that doesn't mean you wouldn't have the right to be angry or just make him feel he was right, does it??

What comes to your kids seeing their grandpa, that's something I wouldn't accept that from my W only because she were angry to him, if there is no other reason why kids shouldn't see him. This whole event isn't kids fault and you never know how long their grandparents are around.
I see no reason to punish them about your father being **** if he is a good granfather to them and they want to see him.

Your W's opininion and feelings are however naturally very understandable.

You can never be objective between your parents and W, I've been there so many times I kow it myself.


"I've seen dreams that move the mountains, hope that doesn't ever end even when the sky is falling. I've seen miracles just happen, silent prayers get answered, broken hearts become brand new. That's what faith can do." Kutless

Offline UrsaMajor

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #37 on: August 18, 2017, 02:06:41 AM »
Nav,

To be honest, I can understand why your W feels the way she does BUT..... This is the R between the kids and their grandfather and NOT between HER and your father.....

Your dropping the issue with her is probably a good thing and letting the kids work on her....

As far as your dad goes, well, it is about firetrucking time that he realizes that you are, in fact, an adult..... You don't have to bow to his authority.

You are right that it is a total clash of world views. I had a smaller incident when I was back in the US with my mom and her husband and basically told them off at one point that I expected that adults who were in their 70's and older would behave as such, especially when dealing with a 10 year old....

I personally think that W doesn't need to be involved or even talk to him. That is fine. The kids shoudl be allowed to see him if they want but in a neutral location (as you already proposed).

Good luck with the telephone call. Ich druck dir die Daumen!
Me - 55
MLC - 47
Together 20 years - Married for 17 at separation
S - 11
D - 8
2 Canines (each of us has one)
BD#1 - August 2015
Atomic BD - 13 Dec 2015
House sold and separated - March 2016
Mid-Lifer has filed for D

Survival Instructions for Newbies
Site Map
 
A "friend" will not "stand by you" no matter what you do. That is NOT a friend. That is an enabler. That is an accomplice.
A REAL friend will sit you down and tell you to your face to stop being a firetrucking idiot before you ruin your life and the lives of those around you.

Offline The NavigatorTopic starter

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #38 on: August 18, 2017, 03:16:12 AM »
Hi Navigator. How come you were nuts being angry for your father who let you down when you most needed him? It wasn't about you asking him to come to babysit because you wanted to go bowling with guys but because you and your wife were having a baby and you needed to be there!
Thanks Silver.

That's precisely what has worried me the most, my objectivity left me for a while.  The consequence of ancient, long dormant neural pathways from childhood being fired again.

What comes to your kids seeing their grandpa, that's something I wouldn't accept that from my W only because she were angry to him, if there is no other reason why kids shouldn't see him. This whole event isn't kids fault and you never know how long their grandparents are around.

I see no reason to punish them about your father being **** if he is a good granfather to them and they want to see him.
The kids will have to work on W to persuade her.  I'd rather she give in to them than to me.  I'm done trying to get her to "give in" to anything.  I rode roughshod over her feelings for years when we were first married and know very well how that ends.

Quote
Your W's opininion and feelings are however naturally very understandable.
Yep.  They are.

Quote
You can never be objective between your parents and W, I've been there so many times I kow it myself.
Glad I'm not the only one!
« Last Edit: August 18, 2017, 03:20:54 AM by The Navigator »
Bomb & Separation: 28th January 2008
Moved in with OM for 5 months
EA/PA persisted from 2008 to 2010
Kids: DS ( 9 ), DD ( 8 ) confirmed mine with paternity tests
Another DS born April 2017
MLC lasted 6-7 years

Offline The NavigatorTopic starter

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #39 on: August 22, 2017, 02:31:46 PM »
For anyone who's still awake at this point and has read this entire thread......

I spoke to my Dad yesterday after a period of silence lasting nearly 4 months.

He was contrite and apologised for any offence he had caused, adding he never would have done it maliciously and that he regetted that that was the result anyway.  10 minutes into the conversation I told him that he's my Dad, that I'll never have another one, that I wouldn't want another one, and that I love him very much.  He told me he loved me very much too.

He expressed regret that we weren't ready for him to come over to our house yet, was entirely accepting of that fact, and expressed hope that things would get better soon.

As far as I am concerned this matter is closed and I have no reason to ever speak of it again.  I am far from perfect, as is my Dad.  We come from different generations and have difference frames of references.  Whilst I won't ask him to babysit during a birth again, I love him just as much as I did before all of this happened and I am glad that we are speaking again.

I look forward to catching up with him next month, even if it has to be a neutral occasion this time.

That is all.
Bomb & Separation: 28th January 2008
Moved in with OM for 5 months
EA/PA persisted from 2008 to 2010
Kids: DS ( 9 ), DD ( 8 ) confirmed mine with paternity tests
Another DS born April 2017
MLC lasted 6-7 years

Online Mitzpah

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #40 on: August 22, 2017, 03:26:37 PM »
I am glad that you were able to make peace with your father :)

You are right, there are lots of differences in your world views, and for me, personally, love covers a multitude of offenses.
M 57
H 57
S 26
S 25
D 24
BD 13 Dec 2010
Divorced 27 Feb 2015 (30 years marriage)

"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future" Jeremiah 29:11

Offline Silver

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #41 on: August 23, 2017, 04:54:17 AM »
Congratulations Navigator, that's a great finish for this story!
Seems like he really did his mirror work about this one.
"I've seen dreams that move the mountains, hope that doesn't ever end even when the sky is falling. I've seen miracles just happen, silent prayers get answered, broken hearts become brand new. That's what faith can do." Kutless

Offline Thunder

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #42 on: August 23, 2017, 07:13:07 AM »
Good to hear, Navigator!!
A quote from a recovered MLCer: 
"From my experience if my H had let me go a long time ago, and stop pressuring me, begging, and pleading and just let go I possibly would have experienced my awakening sooner than I did."

Offline The NavigatorTopic starter

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Re: Furious with my Dad - Request for input for letter
« Reply #43 on: September 11, 2017, 12:30:34 AM »
Bit of an update to this situation.

Mum and Dad have come to our city and are staying with my cousin.  Mum has been over most days to see the children but Dad has not as my wife is adamant that he doesn't come this time.  She didn't want me taking the kids to see him at a neutral location either, although I went to see Mum and Dad yesterday and hung out with them for three hours.

I was really glad I did, even though the fact that I couldn't or didn't take the older two kids really makes my heart hurt.  Dad just has no idea why my Mrs. and I were so angry and, honestly, he doesn't have the wherewithal to truly grasp why. I have let go of all my anger at this incident.

Seeing Dad again on Thursday all being well.
Bomb & Separation: 28th January 2008
Moved in with OM for 5 months
EA/PA persisted from 2008 to 2010
Kids: DS ( 9 ), DD ( 8 ) confirmed mine with paternity tests
Another DS born April 2017
MLC lasted 6-7 years

 

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