b3ta.com qotw
You are not logged in. Login or Signup
Home » Question of the Week » My Arch-nemesis » Post 710963 | Search
This is a question My Arch-nemesis

I lived in fear of a Darth Vader-esque school dinner lady who stood me perpetually at the naughty table for refusing to eat mushy peas. An ordeal made worse after I was caught spooning the accursed veg into her wellies. Who, we ask, has wrecked your life?

Thanks to Philly G for the suggestion

(, Thu 29 Apr 2010, 12:01)
Pages: Popular, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1

« Go Back

My Ex Wife
This is a woman who I should have put under the patio years ago...

We've been divorced over 15 years now but because of her venom and seemingly infinite capacity to hate, I've not seen my son for over 13 years. He's 19 in two weeks and every time he sees me, he looks at me with something approaching hate. Seemingly, she's programmed him that way over the intervening years.

When he was five, he was diagnosed with asthma, and the ex asked me when I went to pick him up for a two hour access visit if I could refrain from smoking in his general vicinity. "Naturally" say's I, "does he have an inhaler?" "Yes" say's she..."Can I have it in case he has an asthma attack?" says I. "If he has an attack, you bring him straight home!" says she. Ex wife needed to be in control to such an extent, she risked our son's health.

This is just one anecdote in a whole series of nightmares that stopped when I just gave up contact when he was five and a half. It was either that or I'd have leapt from the nearest railway bridge in front of a speeding train, such was my state of mind.

I've since moved on, remarried and have two wonderful daughters, who I treat like my absent son in some ways..season tickets to the football and barbecues on the patio etc etc.

Quite simply, that woman has ruined my life and my son's life all for her own selfish, vindictive benefit. There's very few people that I wish dead on this earth but she is top of my list.

and "CJ" If you ever read this, you may understand a flavour of why I had to stop seeing you. The next time you see me in the pub, please don't ignore me mate, I miss you terribly and always will do...cheers


Sorry for the lack of amusement here..

EDIT: I have actually attempted contact three times over the intervening years, all ignored. He's at university now, ironically doing a Law degree where they probably teach you to look at both sides of an argument an look for the facts (this info attained third hand, as is the case in these situations). Given the encouragement from you, fair posters, I think I might have another go via his Facebook profile...In the event I get a positive response, I'll personally mail my thanks to each and every one of you!
(, Thu 29 Apr 2010, 14:09, 15 replies)
I dont like this
but I want to click - how confusing?
(, Thu 29 Apr 2010, 14:34, closed)
How can I put this politely?

*Hopes not to offend

Edit; Have you tried writing him a letter? If not addressed in your handwriting it may actually get to him.
(, Thu 29 Apr 2010, 14:40, closed)
The act of writing something down
can be an extremely positive action, in and of itself. Lack of teh funniez notwithstanding.

This is Question of the Week, and people who've had actual lives will have experienced actual pain from time to time. Despising someone for wrongs done you is hardly surprising. How we deal with it is often highly representative of who we really are.

(, Thu 29 Apr 2010, 14:58, closed)
Keep the door open
In a few years he'll probably understand the lay of the land and there's a good chance he'll want to ask you a question or two, from there, who knows? Good luck, though.
(, Thu 29 Apr 2010, 16:45, closed)
Please try to contact him again.
He is now, or will be soon, old enough to understand the incident regarding the inhaler.
Once he knows something like that other things you and she did may make more sense to him.
(, Thu 29 Apr 2010, 18:18, closed)
Have you actually tried talking to him?
He may just be looking at you thinking you're a git who doesn't want anything to do with him.
(, Thu 29 Apr 2010, 18:51, closed)
He'll be old enough soon...
... to see what a controlling and manipulative witch his mother is. Just be there for him then, because he'll need some continuity and unconditional love.

Why yes, something like this happened to me too (and about the same time in my life - I'm now almost 50). How did you know?
(, Thu 29 Apr 2010, 21:17, closed)

My husbands ex is exacty the same. She stopped him seeing his son for almost 2 years, and told him his daddy was working away, or that his daddy didn't want to see him.
Do you know what my husband did?
He didn't give up. It's no wonder the boy won't speak to you, you just gave up because it was too hard for you. Poor you. Poor grown up daddy, who understands it all, and can't cope.
My husband would have fought for all of those 13 years and would still be fighting now. Luckily, he fought hard enough that he won.

Imagine it from your sons point of view, you just gave up on him, but your daughters get it all. I don't blame him for being mad at you.

I have a 2 year old daughter of my own (my stepson is almost 11) and I would walk to the ends of the earth to spend just 5 minutes with her if she was taken away. I would fight 24/7, fight to the death to get her back. I would NEVER give up on her.

You are a weak excuse for a father and you have no sympathy from me.
(, Fri 30 Apr 2010, 14:22, closed)
Not letting your ignorance get in the way of a strong opinion?
You seem to have taken the OP's extremely limited set of facts and decided that because your husband managed to win his victory every father must be capable of the same. They're not. Every family and their fucked up scenario is unique - let's not forget we're talking about people here. Your misconception that your husband "fought hard enough that he won" implies a misplaced belief that you can always fight "hard enough". Victory isn't always possible. Frequently, even when it is, that victory will come at a cost that's not worth the grief that children are subjected to. A child brought up in an environment constantly fraught with conflict is no better off than a well adjusted and happy one with a single parent. To argue that your husband would do anything to get his child back without having considered the child's interests is selfish in the extreme.

My experience working as a family lawyer has proven time and time again that parents that put their own interests ("I want my boy back") ahead of their child's ("I want what's best for my boy") often try to reconcile the two by thinking "I know what's best for my child, and the other parent doesn't".

Sometimes one parent is so bent on alienating the other that giving up is actually in the best interests of the child, heartbreaking though it is. Having the courage to put that child first is a demonstration of courage and self-sacrifice, not weakness.

Don't let such a limited set of facts vaguely similar to your own scenario justify your vitriol towards the OP. There's always much, much more to the story.
(, Sat 1 May 2010, 23:39, closed)

Quote: This is just one anecdote in a whole series of nightmares that stopped when I just gave up contact when he was five and a half. It was either that or I'd have leapt from the nearest railway bridge in front of a speeding train

May I point out this section of that quote "I just gave up contact when he was five and a half"

Do you have children of your own?

I understand if the parent being denied access is a drug addict or child molester, but this guy seems like a decent enough guy. He COULD have won his case had he just FOUGHT for long enough. Even an hour a week would have been enough to let his son know he cared and was trying.

To "Just give up" on a child is truly despicable........

EDIT: The mother of my stepson is a drug addict, that farms her son out to her mother about 5 days a week, he's with us the other 2 days a week, and we are the only ones who take him on daytrips, on holidays etc.
How can it be selfish to fight for your child when you are a good, if not better parent. My stepson is upstairs, asleep, right now, with his baby sister in the cot next to him, and tomorrow we will be taking him to a local attraction, and next month we're all off on holiday.
He only ever eats vegetables here, and he only showers/baths here. Tomorrow evening he will beg not to be sent home, beg to stay with us, and we have to send him home as she won't allow him to stay here as her benefits will be stopped. It's the only reason she keeps him. That and he's a useful tool to get my husband to do as she likes. "Do it or you won't see the boy any more"
My husband has got so much to put up with and he will NEVER "just give up" and it makes me sick when people damage their kids with their bullshit.
Phew, rant over, it just makes me so cross that people fuck with the little ones heads so much. PUT THEM FIRST FOR FUCKSAKES.....
That is all.
(, Sun 2 May 2010, 1:14, closed)
You're proving my point for me, but at least we agree.
At least we agree that the child should come first. I can't agree that it would have been wise for the OP to keep fighting. Let me explain.

You repeatedly cite your own situation, which is fair enough. It involves a single mother that couldn't reasonably be seen as the best option. Your mistake would be in assuming that the OP had the same situation - we don't know what the mother was like, aside from having poisoned the child against the father. We have an example of her being negligent in terms of the athsma, but that isn't enough to assume an altogether unfit parent - she may have been an otherwise caring, excellent parent. If this was the case then it wouldn't be in the child's interests to begin a battle over their care, especially if the outcome is most likely going to be unsuccessful - all that conflict with no positive result is actually likely to damage any potential relationship between child and alienated parent. Reality is a bitch.

Quoting the OP's words doesn't really help. If you read it again it is clear that the OP was going through a difficult time, as expected. Giving up on something after a nightmarish, fruitless endeavour is hardly a crime, though I can certainly agree that involving a decent lawyer would have been wise. We don't actually know what the final straw was - it may be entirely justifiable for the father to have stopped for the time being. The mistake was not picking up on it again shortly afterward.

Also, don't assume that the child will ever know that the parent was trying to get contact if that parent fails in doing so. The parent in custody of the child is not inclined to pass that kind of information on, especially if that parent is already trying to manipulate the child (as in the OP).

You seem to have taken an emotion response to the particular words "I just gave up contact", which is understandable. But that doesn't justify you judging the OP - you don't know him, or the specifics of the surrounding circumstances.

Do I have children of my own? It doesn't matter. What does matter is my hands on experience having dealt with over a dozen similar cases in the past two years alone - I know how reality works and what to expect from parents. Don't expect to have a more valid opinion just because you're a parent yourself.

Well done on your husband, though. He should be proud - the world needs more parents like him (and you). But that doesn't give you reason to attempt making the OP feel ashamed.
(, Sun 2 May 2010, 2:09, closed)


Let's take this one step at a time..

I took your comments about your current husband on board with regards to access to his children.,,

I value the opinions of people on here because of
the fact that over the last six years I've had a good laugh and have empathised where appropriate with people over various issues and topics...

However, Your current husband's tenacity with regards his children is very noble, and I appreciate any opinion posted on here as long as it's a valid argument and relevevant...

I take on board any valid comments because I value the feedback I get from my fellow posters. but the moment you labelled me an unfit father the all bets were off the table.
To be frank..given the comments you leave ,,and yes I've checked all of them..You need a serious refresher course in inter personal skills chum..given the other replies to this post you are in a minority.
(, Mon 3 May 2010, 18:38, closed)

Never give up. Write down everything, and when you get the chance let him read it. I am pretty sure that your ex hasnt changed much, and perhaps he has seen it himself. I hope that when you reach out, he listens. Good Luck
(, Sat 1 May 2010, 2:03, closed)
Good luck
Hope it works out for you and your son. Keep trying, and let us know how it goes.
(, Sun 2 May 2010, 7:27, closed)
If he knows you are there
for him then surely one day he will want to talk to you, if only to ask you why you weren't there in person (let's assume he's not been given a full and balanced account by your ex').

If you give him a way to contact you without being pushy, maybe even let him know that you're there for him if he needs help sometime, then I reckon you're likely to get a positive reaction even if it takes months or years. If you give the impression that you're looking for a chance to tell your side of the story then he's likely to run a mile. Let him know that you're interested in him and his life rather than in justifying your life to him and you might just find he'll want to tell you.

Good luck.
(, Tue 4 May 2010, 18:15, closed)

« Go Back

Pages: Popular, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1