Ahhh, yes. That word rears its ugly head again.
Before I go into that story, a quick recap of my weekend.
I'm chilling on my couch last night, watching some television, finishing up my breakfast-for-dinner when there is a loud knock at my door. Odd. I'm not expecting visitors. In a pandemic? Why, it's simply not advisable!
So after I stop clutching my pearls and fanning the vapors from my face, I open the door and see BM and the boys with their two week bags.
I go grab DH from the back and he is equally confused. They are doing 50/50 every two weeks right now. The boys were supposed to be gathered on Sunday. BM was confused. No one texted or called (the boys said BM had told them she had it handled).
Well fine. My house is a bit of a mess and I don't have food for them for the next two days (grocery run is Sunday morning), but cool.
Then it starts. They both need new shoes because BM ruined theirs taking them hiking. Oh, and OSS needs a bank account opened because BM doesn't have one and can't take him to open one (odd since OSS is 18 and can open one by himself). Oh, and they need haircuts (don't we all?).
Mind you. She's had them for TWO WEEKS. She's getting the same CS despite having them less frequently. She has gone out to buy stuff for them to take on their past weekend trip where they ruined their shoes. She's not working full time. They aren't in school. She knows how the internet works, and salons have opened back up. So..............
Anyway, we get through that and she leaves. YSS scoots off per usual. OSS gives us an update on school stuff and we talk finishing up driving hours this weekend so he can get his license potentially before he goes back to BM's. All dandy.
As the conversation goes, we all start talking about adulthood and parenthood and how parents don't always know whether they're doing it right. As this unfolds, the topic of BM and DH's relationship comes up.
And DH didn't hold back on the issues. He didn't disparage BM, but he didn't lie about the events that led up to the end of their marriage.
Then it comes out. BM had told OSS that DH had abandoned them. That's what ended it. DH just disappearing.
So DH explained his side of that. Yes, for 4-6 months after his contract was up from the military, DH went silent on BM. She had served him divorce papers, she was fighting with MIL and moved her XH into MIL's house with them. DH had had his vasectomy a few days prior to getting the papers, which hurt because he partially did it because they didn't need more kids. He was not mentally in a good place, and his world shattered.
He regrets everyday that he was young and dumb and just dropped out of communication.
But abandoned? I have a hard time with that. Sure, noncommunicative for 4-6 months, after spending 6 years being the primary or sole bread winner for his family. After giving BM his signing bonus so she could buy baby things. Then, even after those 4-6 months, the money he has spent putting a roof over her head, making sure she had cars to drive and that the kids had clothes (and sometimes food and medicine), paying her utilities and giving her cash for random sh*t she effed away.
I'm not saying DH doesn't have his flaws, or that he has been an upstanding adult who has managed to do everything right and perfect. He has let his own brain and feelings cloud his better judgment. But over the last seven years, he has pulled himself out of poverty, provided more for the boys, has tried to teach them life skills, and has tried his hardest to never say a word even remotely hurtful about BM.
Now, DH is defending himself. He's not saying he did it right. He's acknowledging the bad. But he's not letting BM control the narrative. And he's open to criticism from his kids and whatever feelings they have about him.
But it just eats away at me that she told her kids that their father ABANDONED them. Even though she is the one who asked the courts for no overnight visitation. Even though she's the one who pushed a new "Daddy" into their lives and then ripped him away. Even though she's the one who cheated.
Yep, DH is the big baddy in all this, which I always knew was the narrative. But Jesus, he has tried to be better and has gotten better, and she is in the same place she always is, asking for shoes and haircuts.
So here I am, venting. I'm glad that OSS has a brain. He isn't picking sides. I'd assume that he thinks both his parents are idiots. But, I supposed given that he was told that his father ABANDONED him, being pretty neutral between them is an okay place.