I also see mine put on such a show for them and see it turn off like a switch when they are not around. To me, that reveals A LOT!
My big concern is this example is setting up all three girls to become involved with men who are emotionally distant and they feel they have to constantly work to "earn" their love and support. Not a good or fofilling way to live. Not what I want for them let alone myself.
Yep, you nailed it! My friends and the neighbors say "He's not that bad!" But they don't see him immediately race back to his computer the minute the front door is closed. They don't see how, when on the days he works from home, he cannot even bother to say "Bye, have a good day" to his own children when they leave for school. Heck, he doesn't even know when they've gone.
This is fun... feels good to get it out, Let's see:
1. when the kids were little he'd go to be early on Christmas Even, never lifting a finger to help out on what should be a magical time for little kids.
2. He has never once in his life thought of or chosen or bought a birthday present for his kids.
3. In the last 5 years he has had not one single form of contact with any of the kids' teachers. They go to a super-small school, only 5 teachers, so everyone knows everyone very well. Doesn't know their names, until last year didn't even know WHERE they went to school, and didn't care.
4. Kids can't ask friends over when he's home because he goes to bed early and they're too loud. For crying out loud, they're teenagers! And my kids' friends are all very respectful, kind, responsible kids too. But nope, don't have friends over if he's home.
5. We went on a trip to Europe this spring, the trip of a lifetime for my kids! Unfortunately, husband went too, even after I told him that he probably wouldn't enjoy himself and to honestly think about it before committing to it (that was the last time I TRIED to talk to him honestly and he shut me down again). He spent 12 days absolutely freaked-out miserable on our trip, and since we got back he has not said one thing about it. With something like that, I should be able to "re-live" the trip with my spouse, talk about how fun it was, look at photos together and laugh, etc. Nope... he just doesn't talk about it, like it never happened.
6. I already mentioned withholding medical care when my daughter broke her wrist and I was out of town, letting her sit at home with a fractured bone for 2 days before I could get home to deal with it.
7. Daughter has a sleep disorder that she was born with, and it impacts literally every day of her life, as well as the rest of the family, and a major impact on school. Husband doesn't even know the name of the disorder, much less anything about it or managing it. Doesn't know what medications she's tried and failed, has absolutely no regard for her daily schedule (which isn't normal, obviously) or how that impacts her social life or her schooling. Many kids who have this disorder never graduate from high school, but my daughter gets almost straight A's, thanks to some fantastic teachers and my willingness to work around her crazy schedule.
The list goes on... and by now probably nobody is reading it anymore, but it just feels good to get it all out in the open. I've talked with my girls, and they agree that once we get through the next few hectic (but fun) weeks this summer, we're going to sit him down and tell him one last time how we all feel. If he doesn't respond or isn't willing to try to open up and talk to us, then we're done.
Nnoodle - I think we should both take off on a week-long cruise together, be spoiled rotten, have little fruity drinks with umbrellas in them, and get back to living our lives! Oh, a girl can dream, right?