Disengaging & Relationship Breakdown
Druzilla's blog about disengaging and the breakdown of the relationship between her DH and skids prompted me to post this blog. Druzilla noticed that he and his kids seem to have less of a relationship now that she has quit prompting him. I've been noticing the same happening at our house. An example would be this Thanksgiving. My family was coming to our house this time (Mom, her BF and daughter, Grandma, Aunt, Uncle, Cousins, my grown sons). He only has one child left that we have 50/50 and every other holiday. It was our turn to have him at our house, which is fine because he's gone to my family gatherings before. Oldest SD, her SO, and baby live next door to us and we have a fantastic relationship, they were also invited.
I did not say a word about the two middle skids (SS20 and SD18). We do not have a good relationship, due to all the lying, cheating, stealing, drugs, arrests, etc. We already had a very full house and were trying to figure out extra seating. They don't know any of my family, since they PAS'd out on us a few years ago. In all honesty, I'd prefer not to have them in our home, but would have survived it if he wanted to invite them.
If I had not been disengaged, I would have prompted him to call and find out if they had plans, given them the option of coming even tho it would be mostly my family. I feel like he should have done that on his own, so I never inquired. I left it alone and didn't say a word, waiting for him to bring it up. They do their texting back and forth, but I'm never clued into the discussions. I'm waiting for him to spring it on me at the last minute that they will be coming (that's how these things usually go). He did hint that they may "show up," but never offered any more than that.
Turkey dinner came and went without their presence. That night after everyone had left and I was finishing up the cleaning, I notice him texting with a sad look on his face. I asked what was wrong, and he said SS20 was upset about not being invited. I find out that they had no prior conversation about Thanksgiving. I let him have it (damn dinner wine! LOL). Duh, of course he's upset! None of you know how to communicate. My kids would be crushed if a holiday came and went without a word from me. Likewise, I'd be upset if a holiday passed without hearing from my mother. But that doesn't happen, because we all COMMUNICATE! You don't know how to communicate with your children.
He said he didn't invite them because he didn't think I wanted them there. No, I don't want them here, but they are your children and I'll deal with it. As the parent, he should have called and let them know what was happening. He could have invited them, or told them it was going to be my family and we can do our own dinner another time, or found out that they already had plans with their mother. Anything. But he chose nothing.
On the other hand, if spending the holiday with their father was so important, why didn't they call him to find out what we were doing? They are both adults now, they should accept some responsibility. I absolutely hate people who'll sit around and complain, "You never call," when the phone works both ways.
It is not my job to tell him to call his children. It's also not my job to remind him to call his father (which he didn't do, either). Before I disengaged, I'd remind him to call for birthdays, holidays, if we were going camping or doing something fun. I don't do that anymore and his relationships have suffered. That was not my fault and I will not accept responsibility for this. But I feel a bit guilty, anyhow