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Visit With SS11.5 Almost Over

CastleJJ's picture

Our half of Christmas break with SS11.5 is almost over. It has been a pleasant visit overall. He has been polite, said "please" and "thank you," has helped with DD2, and has helped around the house. The good news is that SS' smartwatch has stayed in the same spot since the first day he arrived. He hasn't touched it and it has stayed turned off. DH and I are thankful it wasn't an issue this visit. It didn't stop BM from having frequent communication though. DH picked SS up last Friday, BM called Monday (Christmas), she is calling again tonight, then she picks SS up on Saturday. She has either seen or talked to SS 4 times this week between pick ups, phone calls, and drop offs. When DH knows he is going to see SS in a given week, he drops from 2 phone calls down to 1 out of courtesy because it doesn't make sense to talk to SS that frequently. BM doesn't, she fully maximizes her communication/interference as allowed by the court order. 

SS drew me a picture as a Christmas gift. He drew his favorite Christmas memory with me. On the back, he wrote out why the memory was so important, saying that my actions made him feel so much less homesick, missing BM and GF and that I made a great Mom. I felt conflicted upon receiving it because SS should have never felt homesick with his Dad (he was 7 years old at the time of the memory), since DH has been active in his life since Day 1. I do appreciate his sentiment though and I appreciate the relationship we have, knowing his feelings toward me could be much much worse. 

I feel very distant this visit, like I just don't care one way or the other. I don't feel as connected, don't care much about what SS has to say about BM and GF, and just feel like I'm watching a friend's kid or a nephew. Honestly, I'm ready for the visit to be over so I can get back to my normal life and not have to deal with DH communicating with BM or scheduling calls and having BM call SS, interrupting my day. When SS is with BM, we call him twice a week, but other than that, we have little to no interaction with BM and just go about our normal lives. Unfortunately at this point, SS just feels like a guest/visitor in our home that has to be hosted, constantly entertained, etc. He seems a little awkward still, so prim and proper like a guest would, not like a kid who is at home. SS has relied on us for sole entertainment this week and it has been exhausting. He wants to play video games, play board games, watch movies, etc. with us from sun up to sundown. Yet at BM's home, he is expected to entertain himself 90% of the time. DH thinks SS is seeking the attention from us that he doesn't get at home. 

We are down to a day and a half left and I don't know how to feel about it. We will see him 4 days in February then again in the summer. 

Comments

notsurehowtodeal's picture

I know there is nothing you can do about it, but for BM to communicate that much in such a short visit is ridiculous. As to SS acting like a guest, given the circumstances, he probably does feel like a guest. It is not your fault or his, it is just the way things have to be due to BM. For your sake, I think it is good your feelings are shifting more to those of an aunt - hopefully it will make everything easier for you.

Rumplestiltskin's picture

Hopefully you can get some rest once it's over. The way you feel is perfectly normal. That whole situation is exhausting. 

Rags's picture

TIme for total destruction of BM while SS watches.  They both need the clarity that will provide.  That SS is polite and pleasant may indicate that there is a chance to salvage him from BM's crap.

I hope that is the case.

Good luck.

Harry's picture

Smart watch's phone number ?  Two can call that watch. !!!     Maybe BM is afraid that SS will get too closed to his BF. You know that man thing ....bors.     ...And she will lose control.   There has to be a reason for the " control " thing

CastleJJ's picture

The smartwatch is intended for Kids so it is not fully functional like an apple watch or any other smartwatch. Everything that is added to the watch is added by a Parent Dashboard. BM and/or GF are the owners of the parent dashboard and they have to approve everything - all contacts, all apps, etc. DH knows damn well that BM will never approve us having access to communicate with SS.

When SS was 5 and BM was moving out of state with him, we bought SS an Amazon Kids tablet. We set it all up and downloaded Skype. We showed SS how to call us on Skype. Literally all he had to do was hit a button, we made it so easy. Within a week of him having it, we couldn't get in touch with him. BM claimed that it broke, but refused to provide the tablet back. We learned then that we would never have free access to SS and everything would go through BM. 

BM has always had to be in full control of SS and DH's relationship and she has been planning the demise of it since before SS was born. Her documentation against DH, how she handled DH from day 1, etc. She knew exactly how to build her case and set it all up to lead to this exact outcome. We threw off her plans by taking her to court in 2019, which is why she reacted so violently - false allegations, withholding visitation, even more daily verbal abuse of DH, freaking out at pick ups and drop offs, etc. but the judge still ruled in her favor anyway. I feel like we have reached the point of acceptance in this shitty situation and now we are just trying to get on with our lives, hoping that in 6 years when SS ages out, he will still want a relationship with us. 

Winterglow's picture

Yes, but .. that was 6.5 years ago. Ask SS if he'd like for you or his dad to call him via his watch, make a big thing of it if he says yes. If you can't contact him once he goes back, let him know on the next call and try to work out tech solutions with him . Absolutely do NOT imply that his mother or her gf ( are they married yet?) might be the cause. Just let him think...

CastleJJ's picture

We did this with the first smartwatch in 2021. His response was "that's up to my Mom." We have asked to contact him via his texting app on his iPod and the response has been "I don't know - you'll have to ask my Mom." We recently asked him if we can buy him an Xbox live membership so him and DH can play video games together, and his response was "that is up to my Mom." We have tried other means over the years to have more contact with SS that doesn't go through BM, but SS has been programmed to divert back to BM, so we get nowhere. 

Last year, DH asked SS if he would want to spend more time with us. He said he would like to and sometimes asks BM and she says "We'll see" but it never happens. We've told him if he wants more visits with us, we can try to make it happen. We've brought it up again since then and his response has changed to "I'm happy with the current arrangement."

We have done what we can do but without the support of BM and the courts, we are limited in what we can do. And while we have tried to increase communication and involvment, we can only do so much if SS' continuous response is "ask my Mom."

Winterglow's picture

You've probably already done this but when he says that he'll have to ask his mother, has anyone asked why and let him think about it?

 

CastleJJ's picture

Yes, we have. He literally goes mute and it's almost as if you can see his brain malfunction. We keep doing that to a certain extent, but the aftermath of that for SS isn't great. It usually causes him to go quiet and uncomfortable for several hours or days. At this rate, I'm not sure it's worth it. We would rather just enjoy the short time we have with him. 

Rags's picture

I would sue the shit out of BM for interferance in his relationship with his son if I was your DH.  A website highliting anything and everything about her and her life. Her PASing crap, her lies, etc, etc, etc......

Any time she sleazed out and interfered, it would be game on.  I would have her under such a hairy eyeball/microscope that I would know which pube she forgot to trim and I would drag her to court for that too.

Time for BM to win some stupid prizes for her stupid games.  And... SS is nearly that the age where he needs the facts and the truth about his idiot mother and her manipulative bullshit.

Aggressive

NeverEnough321's picture

I also had that -the kids are just guests here- moment right before the holidays. OSD stopped coming and SS and YSD wouldn't even take their shoes off for the evening visit because they were getting picked up in 2 hours. Sometimes SS wouldn't even go into his room. 

I agree, SS may be seeking attention, especially from your DH. I've had to ask SO several times if SS really WANTS to hang out with me when he's here, or if he's feels like he has to be around one of us. I can imagine it's exhausting for you because you can't spread it out over time, it has to be over this short visit. Hope you're able to relax now!