Wow, so many replies–and my computer is dragging so it’s hard to respond. Thanks for all your stories, everyone–it’s good to know I’m not alone, at least.Today’s saga got even richer. Apparently, this whole thing has made him feel like a “bad parent”—a feeling he could have avoided* if only I had considered and protected his Feelings by not telling him that Tbone was upset with the turn[of events. *According to him, I should have kept all this info to myself, because it only served to upset him. And besides that, I’m not a good parent either, because I don’t—yes, I’m quoting here—I don’t jump on the trampoline with the babies.
It only got worse from there. If you can imagine. He also refused to pay his share of the daycare, but changed his mind when I told him I’d explain the situation to the daycare provider (he works with her husband, mustn’t look bad in front of the buddies, after all.)
At any rate, to touch on a few responses here:
Shakes, thank you for sharing your experience. I’m so glad you got beyond it. I’m very glad to see that the babies are just as happy to come home as they are to go to Daddy’s, so there’s never any big leaving-time trauma from either of them. It’s just very hard on Tbone when he doesn’t see his Daddy for a few days.
Zen, consider it documented. Along with everything else.
Spiff, he does drink a lot, but he’s never shown up here drunk. (At least since we separated, heh.) I’ve been pretty straightforward about the consequences if I ever find that he has them in a vehicle when he’s drinking, so I think he’ll be responsible in that area at least.
From now on, I’m just going to leave visits unannounced as much as possible. That bothers me, because I think the kids need the structure of KNOWING when their dad is coming—but losing a bit of structure is preferable to the kind of disappointment that my little boy went through, I think.
Things are somewhat calmer now—as any abusive man tends to do, he has gone through yet another cycle of anger and aggressiveness and is now sorry and conciliatory. Too bad it doesn’t work as well for him as it used to, but at least it will buy me another three weeks of peace. By then, the provisional agreement should be in place (or whatever they call the initial hearing results.)
More later, when my computer is behaving a bit better….