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More of a vent ( apparently lots of vents this week)

stepmomnorth's picture

This is more of a vent, or maybe journal.

In my other post I said how partner hasnt talked to SS in over a month. He wants to tell him about my cancer and I said no and that upset him. He doesn't really understand why. Because doesn't him keeping on asking me REALLY show that he doesn't understand, even if he says he does?? If he truly understood he'd stop asking. It's as if him telling him, for his own emotional reasons is more important than my feeling or reasons.

If it were me as a parent I would reach out to my kid and keep having lunches or do something fun. However he seems almost afraid to reach out?

I had the thought earlier, true or not, is it easy to blame me for things if he can use me as part of the reason for not reaching out. Why does he sometimes make snarky comments to me like, "You KNOW I want to still try and keep a relationship going with SS". My thought, well do more then FFS!!!! Why is this turned around on me? 

Strange what I don't get is he mentions wanting to tell SS that I have cancer so bad but doesn't reach out to SS to keep the contact or diaglolue rolling. Why is he so afraid?? If they had a good thing going why did he stop?

He got SO emotional when we were talking about his kids and me having cancer. He's pretty hurt about his kids behavior and how they've treated him over the years. Some days I know he feels like they've hurt him so bad that he's *almost lost hope. It's been nonstop. They haven't appreciate what he or I have done for them they've been really bratty to us, for years. They've said horrible things to him, they've walked all over him. They've tried to manipulate him. They've yelled at him and I. They have no respect for him. He works a grueling job, late days always with the notion of having a nice life and home for them and they saw, or appreciated none of it. This is the worst part for him, in my opinion. It kills him. He feels absolutely horrible about this. He was crying and said to me, "I love my kids but I don't like them." I understand what he was trying to say. Their behavior and their issues have been really, really bad and they've treated him truly like garbage that was not important to them.

I guess I stay out of meddling or giving him suggestions other than not to talk about my cancer. I feel like he needs to figure this out on his own.

Partner will never do counselling with them. He won't, it's his personality and I know this. He would talk about doing counselling for months but he just doesn't want to do the research on the web and dial those numbers. In looked up once and easily found a group of social workers in the kids city that specialize in teen addictions and trauma... It was easy to find. I guess he either doesn't want to put the work in, nor he's passive or he's afraid or all 3.. 


Crr18's picture

Hugs to you for your having to deal with cancer. It is sad your DH wants to use it as a way to get back into his SS life but it sounds like he doesn't know what else to do to start talking to him again. It is not your cancer that has come between the two of them . My SO is the same way right now with loving but not liking his kids. I wish I understood how so much can be done for this children of divorce and none of it is appreciated. They just want more and more. They are never satisfied with what is being done for them.  But right now you have to think about yourself and your health.  

stepmomnorth's picture

That is very very true. It's not my cancer that has come between them, and I've not done anything wrong at all. It's up to my partner to make amends and he can do this without telling his son about me. He doesn't need this piece to fix things. And he shouldn't make me feel bad about this. The problem is on his end, he needs to find it within himself to figure it out. If he wants to fix the relationship then he needs to put some solid work in. 

ESMOD's picture

You have such a huge amount on your plate right now.  I think it's really important that you and he focus on what is REALLY important to you.. and I say you because YOU are the one that has the highest stakes right now.  You are the one dealing with a very difficult diagnosis.. you are the one looking at potentially very limited time.. not him.. not his kids.

So, if he is having emotional issues about not telling his son about your diagnosis? tough poop.. talk to a therapist DH... I know that it must be difficult for your DH to have his wife go through such a tough health issue... My husband had cancer a couple of times and while the diagnosis weren't as dire.. it's terrifying to think about having to go on without the person that you love.. without your life partner.  So, I get that there can be all sorts of emotions.. grief, fear and even anger at the person who is sick to an extent.. for daring to think about "leaving".. I know it's a terrible thought. .but I don't think it's entirely unusual either.. of course, he should be nothing less than loving and supportive of YOU and what you are going through.  But, if he is having these kinds of conflicting feelings, he needs to see his own therapist to help him deal.

I don't know if he just wants to unburden himself with the information... whether he thinks his son will somehow magically be abetter person and be back in his life if he knew.. or whether he wants to excuse some estrangement with may also be that he feels guilty hiding a "big" thing from his son... who knows.. but since this is YOUR diagnosis.. I think you get to choose who knows what and if HE is having these emotions and feelings.. he needs to seek counseling.. not break the trust with you.

Your number one priority is your health.  That would be followed by maximizing the time you have with your kids, husband and family.  I don't know if your DH is still working those crazy hours.. but now is a time to think about dialing that back.. so that you can all do MORE together.. at a tiime when you are still able to enjoy it right?  Down pretty much at the bottom is going to be facilitating your husband's relationship with his kids.. with triying to mend fences with them.. you just don't need to expend ANY energy doing that. period.  Sometimes the time for those opportunities is passed.  Time will tell whether your DR's prognosis is 100% accurate.. and there will be plenty of time for your DH to rebuild a relationship with his kids.. and in hindsight. .he would be able to use your illness as a great reason why he dropped the rope for a bit.  (if he even wants to).

But.. take care of YOU.. tell your husband to stop pushing his guilt on YOU because I am sure you have a couple of full containers of your own feelings.. regrets.. guilts.. fears.. etc.. and it's not FAIR to burden you further when you really have to be very focused on the most important parts of your life.. and those don't include his kids.. not for lack of trying in the past.. but it is what it is now.


stepmomnorth's picture

Thanks. You have given me a lot of food for thought. You are able to see things that I somewhat missed or hadn't occurred to me. One thing I am coming to realize is that time is short and what matters is to spend some quality time with those that care about me and that important in my life. I think he knows he has some emotional issues. And maybe it dawned on him that I can't discuss all things with him anymore since my diagnosis. I told him in our last convo that I just don't have it in me to deal with these issues and that it causes me stress. I also told him that I can't be the one who solves all of his problems for him, that he needs to figure this out on his own. He realizes but he is still so hesitant.

I suspect that what you think is true. That he wants to unburden himself with telling SS about my cancer. He feels it's not fair to his kid to leave this out and he feels guilty, yet he's not seeing the whole picture about how this affects my feelings. Maybe he thinks if his SS found out that he'd be livid, as if my partner was not being honest. I can see how he might have an explanation for his kids as to why he did this.. There are reasons. But alas.. 

What struck me most about your post, which is something I hadn't considered is that, yes he will go on to have years with his kids and i won't be around. Also a very valid point about being able to explain to his kids about my illness, his help with my illness and dropping the rope. . And I think that difficult conversation goes hand in hand with explaining some other of the relationship dynamics they've had through the years. Such as the life he's tried to build for them.

Youre also right and if he tries to guilt me in any way otherwise about the kids, I need to really lay it out to him that it doesn't have to do with me and don't put pressure or blame on me. It's on him and I need to focus on my health. Really, I don't want to be privvy to his convos and progress unless they are positive. 

Winterglow's picture

"he wants to unburden himself with telling SS about my cancer"

That is such a selfish thing for him to do. If he can't handle your news, how the EFF does he think a kid will do getting not only your news but also his fathers angst unloaded onto him?

stepmomnorth's picture

I'm not sure he meant to burden him with stress, but that he would feel a burden lifted off himself for letting SS know. (feels like he's hiding it). Really I'm but sure of his reasoning, I can speculate strongly. He feels bad about not telling him. For me this is faulty logic and it makes sense NOT to tell him, on so many levels!! Of course it's partners "bio" and not mine. He is feeling guilty. I certainly think him telling his son won't be some healing point in their relationship, it may make things worse really. I guess he has rose coloured glasses.

You have a valid point. If he can't handle this news how can a misguided, troubled child handle this news from a father who has struggled with their relationship and hasn't been in much contact with, NOR have they worked through any of their other issues!! Let's add one more huge factor before solving their primary unsolved issues??? 

Tried out's picture

new ask? Has he brought it up again after being told no?

stepmomnorth's picture

He's brought it up a few times already. Usually, I would mention to him I'd like him to tell our couple friend. At which point he says exactly the same thing, "Well I would really like to tell SS. I am feeling bad about this." At which point I said a non descriptive response like "I'm just not comfortable or ready to yet." (no explanation given.) At which point he prodds, "Could you tell me why?" And I respond "I don't feel comfortable because of how things went down. SS has a lot of hostility toward me. They treated me bad. Haven't apologized. I just don't like the idea, I'm not ready.".

This last time played out EXACTLY the same way. Except I told him to stop asking. I said I need to focus on my health, this was during my recovery of a surgery and I really needed to rest. He followed me upstairs to talk more!! I ended up losing it on him a bit. I said he needs to stop asking. I told him my reasons yet again. I mentioned about the stress and my health. I also brought up how bio mom would have a hayday with this, she won't sign his divorce papers! That it makes me feel sad thinking of her being happy about me being sick and I also said I think that SD would also be happy.

I made it very clear to not ask again.. But I'm still feel shooken up by this.. Hence the rant lol. It bothers me that he is acting tis way though I'm happy he won't bring it up again. 

Tried out's picture

gets it through his head that your wishes come before his about this. It kinda makes me sick that he's doing this because it seem to me that he's using your diagnosis to reignite his relationship with his kids. 

I realize there are other possible reasons for his actions, like he thinks he will get emotional support from SS. I seriously doubt that he would given their past treatment of you but I'm sure it's a comforting fantasy. The reality, though, is that there he would quite possibly end up feeling worse.

stepmomnorth's picture

It feels so complicated. I think there's some truth in that he wants to use this news to reignite their relationship on some level. He's always been this father who want to bond through some fatherly talk type deal. Late night campfires where they "connect". I think he's trying to use it in this way. He thinks it will bring them closer maybe. But.....they have bigger issues to work through that have nothing to do with this and that is more important in my mind.

I think you're right about the comforting fantasy and that he will likely feel worse. I have had some nice moments with SS through the years but I don't think my SS views me in the way my partner thinks SS views me... Therein lies the problem. 

Winterglow's picture

The reason you don't want him telling his kids about your cancer is because you are being very careful about who you tell and are only confiding in people you trust and who care about you. You are carefully building your support network and you have no place for self-centred, rude teenagers with no sense of respect, responsibity nor concern for others. 

Winterglow's picture

Then tell him that exactly. If he protests with "but I ..." tell him to stop being so damn selfish and to think of others for a change.

What you want is for him to care more about you than his bellybutton-centric ideas.

stepmomnorth's picture

Partner recently had a really good break though conversation with SS, a bit over a month ago. They did work through some stuff. SS was angry they sold the family home. Partner explained a lot of things to him and he seemed to understand

(speculation only!) 

This is how I think "my partner views how this convo would play out with my SS" (my speculation of my partner's view of how the future convo would go) 

Partner would tell him I have cancer. He would get a bit teary eyed and say he had no idea and ask him how he is doing. Partner would describe how much he loves SS and SS would feel sorry for his previous actions. Partner would tell him how much I loved being around them and we had so many fun times together, such as camping trips. SS would agree. SS would apologize for any past missteps toward me. They would hug. Partner would tell him that he wants to have a better relationship. SS would agree. Partner would tell him how proud he is of SS. <end of convo >

Tried out's picture

And double barf.

stepmomnorth's picture

This is exactly what I envision (of what my partner expects that it would go like) each and every time, lol.

stepmomnorth's picture

I kind of wrote that on there to answer some questions, regarding what i think my partner expects to gain from this cancer convo. Anyhow, this is "my interpretation" and speculation anyhow, true or not true who knows. I do think he has those rose colored glasses regardless. 

advice.only2's picture

Tell your DH full stop your cancer battle is just that yours and it’s not a cheap ploy for him to reach out to his children to garner sympathy so they will talk to him.

I understand where you are coming from with this, my DH does the same thing with his Spawn.  He claims he wants a relationship with her, but then never does anything to reach out to her.  He tries to gaslight me and blame me by saying things like “Well I would keep in touch with her more, but you won’t have anything to do with her.”  Or “Well I know she will want to see BD at some point and you won’t allow it.”  I finally had to tell him that he needed to stop blaming me for his lack of relationship with his daughter.   DH and I have had deep discussions on the issue and he finally admitted to me that he really doesn’t want a relationship with his daughter and that she doesn’t bring him happiness and he has nothing in common with her.  I told him that is his real reason for not re-connecting with her and has nothing to do with me.  After that discussion he hasn’t really brought her up and I have no reason to.  You need to be firm with your DH “Your lack of relationship has nothing to do with me and everything to do with you and your children, leave me out of this equation!”

stepmomnorth's picture

True dat!! All of this. Thats exactly how I feel. And yes leave me out of this equation for sure! It's not about me. 

Ispofacto's picture

When we are children, we have an idealized hope of what our future will be.  Happy marriage, happy children, nice home, nice vacations, etc.

When we divorce, that dream dies a little.  We won't have that happy family.  So we start over with someone else, hoping we can make that dream come true.  Then our ex PASes the kids, and that dream dies again.  But we hold out hope that someday they will come around, like a Hallmark movie.

Well, for your DH, that window of opportunity is shrinking.  So he wants to hasten the reunification.  But he is afraid to reach out again, because each rejection kills his hope a little.  If only his kids understood how short the time imperitive it has become...

But reality isn't a Hallmark movie, and he doesn't realize that.

If he doesn't try, he can keep his hope alive.


stepmomnorth's picture

I was somewhat surprised to notice my partner called his son. They seemed to have a chill easy going conversation about how son is doing at work and school and friends etc. I was happy to see this. I think its important for him to just keep reaching out to him periodically to check in. I did hear him ask if he wants to meet up for a visit sometime soon. My partner must have gotten past whatever mental hurdle he had that was preventing him from reaching out.

Letting my SS know about my cancer is not needed for their  reunification.  Theres a million other little nuances for them to figure out. One day at a time. In my opinion just keeping that connection is integral and build on that. In a way, I feel that my partner is afraid of his own kids.