Dear Mother Of My Children…

Posted by Fresh Start Dad on May 9, 2010 in about the ex, Kids, Parenting, Rant |

Dear Mother Of My Children:

Years ago you gave me two wonderful gifts that have brought joy, pain, love, pride, and much more into my life.  For this, I thank you and wish you a Happy Mother’s Day.

On this Mother’s Day I wish a gift for you.  It’s one that I have wished for you in the past, but you have repeatedly refused to receive it.  Please, trust me, if you accept the gift you will have children that love you more.  The gift is is the ability to respect; specifically your children.  Trust me, this is the gift you need.

Although you feel you deserve to be respected more than you currently are, you do not.  You will not be respected more simply because you “care” so much and try so hard to ensure everyone follows the “right” way — your way.  You will be respected more if you begin to respect others.  Even if you can respect just a little, it would be a start.

Years ago you gave me the gift of being able to raise our children without you for several years.  You chose not to see them through some formative times.  You missed watching your daughter cross from pre-teen to young-adult, and missed your son entering his pre-teen era.  You missed when they left elementary school and all your daughter’s Middle School years. They are 17 and 14, but you still treat them as if they were 11 and 8; the ages when you left.  You missed it as they transitioned into young people, learning to form their own opinions, thoughts, and feelings.  Young people that are smart, that you should respect, because they deserve it, because they are people.

So this is my gift to you. To help you see how you missed the simplest opportunities to show that they actually matter to you, and that you respect them, so that they may respect you in return.

  • Just 3 days ago you decided to ask if the kids could be with you today, Mother’s Day.  Although this is my Sunday, of course I said yes.  The kids were confused though; if you wanted to spend the day with them, you waited until Thursday night to ask?  Didn’t you know Mother’s Day was coming?
    For future reference: Please refer to the calendar you received from them today as a gift.  Sarcasm is a gift I gave my children years ago.
  • When you asked if you could get them Saturday night I politely said no.  The kids and I already had plans for the evening; pizza and movie night.  You said that it’s more important that you get them, rather than they watch a movie with me.  When I inquired as to why — perhaps you were planning to travel out of town overnight to visit your family –you let me know simply that it’s “because Sunday is Mother’s Day”.  Sorry, no, the kids wanted the night with me and the movie.  When you called the kids directly, had the same conversation with them, and told them that they shouldn’t put the plans with me before coming to stay at your house you were given the same response; we have plans with Dad already.  Maybe if you had asked for them further in advance, before our plans were made, before the movie they chose to see arrived in the mail, perhaps then… Alas though, you didn’t.
    For future reference: Plan ahead, don’t make them feel like an afterthought, don’t make them feel bad for choosing to stick with plans they had already made.
  • In lieu of Saturday night, I said to let me know how early you want the kids on Mother’s Day.  I’ll get them up.  I’ll feed them.  I’ll bring them over.  I’ll make sure you can spend the whole day with them.  “Eight o’clock.  Have them ready to go at eight o’clock.”  You will come and get them.  Though the kids weren’t happy with the thought of getting up so early on a Sunday they knew they should; it’s Mother’s Day and their mom should get to spend the day with her kids if she desires.  Sigh…
    For future reference: The next time you have them get up early for you I suggest that you try to be less than an hour late to come get them.
  • They thought that since you wanted to pick them up rather than me dropping them off that you would all be going somewhere right away.  They expected you to be coming to get them.  They did not expect only their step-father to pick them up…because you were still in bed.
    For future reference: If you say you want to be with them at a certain time, you should actually try to be with them at that time.  Actions speak louder than words.
  • The kids asked if I would make breakfast today and I told them no.  When I told you I would have them fed by 8:00 you said not to feed them; you were going to have breakfast with them.  This was the plan the kids knew about and were excited.  They thought they would be going out to breakfast with you to one of the local cafe’s.  The cold cereal they had as you were still in bed was less than they expected. File under text messages I don’t like to receive.
    For future reference: Do what you say you’re going to do.

You may have discovered by now the gift I truly wish to give is not for you, but it is for our children.  I wish for them to receive respect from someone they don’t feel they get it from; from you.  I wish for them to not feel like your possessions; like trophies that you hold up to the world to make yourself look better.

Actually, I simply wish you still lived out of state.

I hope I’m done with this for the day.

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    • Sheila says:

      All I have to say is wow. It’s unfathomable to me that a mother can do that. I love my girls so much and I do everything for them. I don’t give up time for them to be with the opposite sex and the time we have together is cherished. The men I have my daughters with don’t do what I do and it’s sad but it’s their loss and when my kids are adults they will always know what parent did the most for them. Unfortunately your ex will learn the hard way too. To bad for her.

    • Ben Wakeling says:

      Wow – your ex sounds like a pretty poor excuse. Sorry if that offends you, but I sense you won’t mind!

      I agree – respect is something earned, not a right. And it sounds like you have the full respect of your children, for which you should be very proud.


    • singlegirlie says:

      I’m sorry. That makes me sad. Does she read your blog? Maybe she should.

      • She does not read it, which is good because all it would do is piss her off. Such actions are something that I’ve had to deal with for quite a while, including when we were married. She simply doesn’t get it.

        Soon after we were just divorced I encouraged her to start attending the kids’ events; sporting events such as softball, baseball, and soccer, and even some school events such as band performances. (She has living nearby still at this time.) She very rarely made it to such events using the argument that she needed to study for her classes. When I told her that the kids would want her there she said “The kids will understand that me studying to get my degree is more important since it’s for the good of the family so that I can get a better job.”

        She has her degree, but all the kids know is that she wasn’t there to see their first hit of a ball, catch the fly ball, play the flute in front of over 100 people, or score their first goal. And now she has a job that still keeps her away at times.

    • […] Fresh Start Dad’s open letter to his ex, “Dear Mother of My Children” […]

    • Tiffany says:

      Simply. Awful. And I’m crying as I write this. I’ve never understood parents who walk away from their children that way… and who don’t make them the most important thing in their lives. My son is my treasure and I never *never* would let anything or anyone interfere with that.

      Good for you for being a good dad. I’m blessed my ex is a good dad, too. And I hope for really good things for you and your children.

    • Lisa says:

      I’m sorry that the kids didn’t get the special day that they wanted from their mother. Like Tiffany, I am very lucky that my kids have a wonderful father, and you sound like a wonderful father, too. *big hug*

    • thordora says:

      Sigh. I had a friend in grade school/high school who had a mother like this-and that mother is pretty much my guide to who I do NOT want to be now that we’ve split. It’s not the kids fault, ever. I hate stuff like this. You sound like you’re trying so hard-wish this was easier on you. 🙁 Kids are lucky.

    • Darby says:

      I survive in a similar boat, but am lucky (so far) that my ex has not returned to the state. Your children are lucky to have such an honest and respectful Dad. I am certain that they are only able to cope with their Mother because of the strength they get from you. I only hope that when my boys are a few years older, that we have everything as together as you.

    • Beth says:

      Wowza. You are a better person than me. I would have pummeled her. Sorry you and your kids have to deal with this.

    • […] with the reverse; the online community finding my real identity.  I wanted to ensure that my rants about my ex, or people I’ve gone out with, discussions about my family tree, and more, were not seen by […]

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