Hi. I've been divorced since June, due to my ex's affair with another woman. He is still with her, and sometimes he has her babysit my 8 year old daughter. My daughter wants to tell me how much fun she had with her, and frankly I don't want to hear anything about this woman. Ok, I guess I'm being selfish, but every time I hear about her I feel physically ill (my issue, I know). My question is: Do I tell my daughter I don't want to talk about it? I have told her I don't like the OW because she is the reason mom and dad aren't together any more, and maybe that was out of line. I love my daughter more than anything, and I don't know what to do. I don't want to hurt her. Any advice is appreciated.
I sympathise with you, my kids are in contact with OM...4 months after D-Day...not even divorced yet or started proceedings. They are 3, 5 and 7 so will just not understand and think that it's normal to be around someone who is probably good fun with them. It's difficult becuase if in the future I meet someone else I will want my kids to like them and feel comfortable with them. As hard as it is, I feel that it's just another sad part of whats happening and the danger is upsetting her even more by almost getting her to side with you and have negative feelings towards OW
WomanScorned, I think you need to be really careful what you say to your daughter. You want your daughter to feel completely comfortable discussing everything with you. Instead of thinking about what the other woman did to you, can you try to think of how she is making your daughter feel? It sounds like she is treating your daughter well and that is something to be thankful for. This will take an incredible amount of strength on your part. But you have the strength in you - after all, you are a mom! Try your best to listen to and respond to your daughter in a positive manner. If you can do this for only a limited amount of time, then take a break. Go somewhere private and tear up a page with the woman's name written on it, or punch your mattress or do whatever, just don't let your daughter see. As tough as it is, try to put your daughter's needs first.
Thank you, Knife, and Cheesy, for putting it into perspective. That's what I needed! I should be grateful that the OW is treating my daughter well, and I shouldn't discourage my daughter from talking to me. It is so hard to be strong enough.
I hear you woman! It is incredibly difficult being strong. But you will be amazed at how much strength you have and what you can go through. It will get better! I'm coming out the other side now; a year ago I just wanted to not exist. I have grown and learned and can actually say I am happy. Never been able to say that before!
Treat yourself gently. Spoil yourself whenever possible. You deserve to see the good in life and to be happy!!
Well the kids are now calling OW's brother and SIL Auntie and Uncle.....
I say "Oh Really!?!?!" and "That's nice" a lot....I hope it hides my facial expression(and the eye roll) and conveys some type of interest. I don't initiate discussions/questions about their time with their dad....I really could care less about stbx and OW at this point....but the hard part is feigning interest for the kids....so they will keep talking...so they will casually bring up things like kids running around fire pits while dad is drinking beer inside and neighbor kids falling into said outside fire pit while adults are drinking ...inside. It at least gives me an opportunity to discuss safety with the kids.
One of the reasons why your husband is happy with his OW is your children are accepting her, did you ever tell your daughter the reason for your divorce is his affair with her? If not have a conversation expain his affair how it hurts you when she comes home telling you of all the fun she is having . The truth will not harm her but it will help her understand what happened and that you are there , are not the one who abandoned the family and will love her through everything.
It is a OW delight when the waywards children accept her and she gets to play temporary mommy , you can't change that but you can ensure you bring up your daughter with a moral compass. Hiding the truth or diluting it will hurt your daughter more going forward. Posted via Mobile Device
Eli-Zor, How do you explain what an affair is to an 8 year old child? You need to be truthful, but the truth has to be explained in a way that a child of that age can understand. Is the affair the only reason for the divorce? A divorce is such a complicated situation, it is never just one thing that causes it; to try to explain this to a child would make her more confused and unsure about what she can talk to her mom about. The most important person here is the child. She needs to be able to tell her mom anything.
Knife....though all marriages have problems...affairs make them worse and kill them dead. So the affair is the reason. Bottom line.
Anyway,WomanScorned, telling the child OW is the reason mom and dad are apart is fine. It is truth. Truth=good. Lies=bad.
I know it hurts so much hearing about your child spending fun time with OW. I do think you have to toughen your skin and just listen so child doesn't hide things from you. She is 8 now but will be a teen before you know it and you want an open line of communication.
Perhaps find something to do while having to listen that distracts you from the pain...a meditation like tapping a toe or something.
Maybe this will not be a popular opinion but I find blaming the other (man or woman) is giving them so much power over you.
And an affair is 50/50, so the spouse in the affair must share responsibility too.
Wouldn't it be better to say something like "Your dad is making choices that I don't agree with so I decided to separate from him so I can protect my feelings". Just typed this off the top of my head so maybe it needs to be re-worked.
I guess my point is that just because someone has an affair does not automatically lead to divorce. The cheating spouse has a choice on how to behave and the cheated-on spouse has a choice on how to behave too.
Just a thought, what is the average length of a relationship that started off as cheating? I bet it's not very long and I'm sure it is not a healthy, satisfying relationship. Any spouse who would cheat or any person who would be in a relationship with a married person, is not in a good place emotionally. Until the person resolves the issues that lead them into cheating, that person will never be happy.
An affair is not 50/50 it is 100% the waywards fault , any attempt to pass any of the fault to the BS is blameshifting and is a classic wayward script. The children need to know the truth , telling them the truth helps them understand why there is an issue between the BS , the wayward and the OW . It allows the child to know the BS is there for them, will not lie and is not diluting the truth. Posted via Mobile Device
Sorry, I should have been clearer. My 50/50 means the cheating spouse and the other man or woman. I didn't mean that the spouse being cheated on is responsible. So, my meaning is it is not just the OW/M to blame, there is also blame shared by the spouse who cheated.