What Did She Say

My mind is always open

More looming..

Posted by jackiyo 6 Comments

There’s lots of stuff going on again. As there will be in this journey to becoming resingled

This one is about this kids again. I wrote about how telling our kids about the divorce was looming. I wrote about telling the kids about our separation and how that went down.

And now, there’s more. And really, this is going to be harder than the “Mommy and Daddy aren’t going to be married anymore” talk.

How can it be worse, you ask? Well, you see, Daddy’s moving away. Far away. Ottawa away. That’s about 5-6 hours away. Through Toronto. So, a really, really crappy, through-traffic-soup, kinda drive.

credit: http://www.canadianhomeguide.com/ontario/ottawa-housing-in-capital-crisis

What it comes down to is Daddy’s leaving.

There’s really no other way to put it. And how do I get the kids to not feel that? That Daddy left and moved away from them?

credit: http://askthepsych.com/atp/2012/03/05/how-do-i-talk-with-my-kids-about-our-divorce/

He’s moving for good reasons. He sees opportunity there. More than he sees here.

But this *really* changes things. We’ve been splitting things 50-50. Parenting has been a team effort. Split down the middle. I’m here half the time and he’s here half the time.

And come the fall, I’m – for all intents and purposes – a single-parent. Big change for me, too.

So now this talk is looming. And I’m dreading the fallout more than even I was with the first talk. I’m mostly worried about the long-term fallout. I’m most worried about our son. Our five-year-old son. Who won’t have a dad around all the time anymore. I worry he’ll act out. I worry about the path he could take. I worry I won’t be able to help him work through all those feelings he’s going to feel.

I worry about my daughter, too, of course. She LOVES her Daddy. She’s always been Daddy’s little girl. Daddy could always comfort her. He was the stay-at-home parent for the second year of our son’s life – so our daughter had her Daddy around all the time when she was four. That’s a big deal. They’re very close.

How do you sit down and tell your kids you’re moving away?

This talk will be different. This one’s going to come from Daddy. I’m going to be there, but it’s not my talk. I’ll be there to support my kids – and also alleviate them worrying and asking, “Does Mommy know?!”

It’s gonna be a tough week. A tough summer. A tough fall.

We’ve know for a couple months he was moving, but wanted to wait until school was over to tell the kids. And this way they have a couple months to wrap their heads around it (as much as they can) and ask questions and spend time as much time with Daddy as they can before he goes.

credit: http://small-towndad.blogspot.ca/2010/11/waving-just-makes-me-smile.html

There’s really not much more to say. I’m sad for my kids. I’m worried I’ll be too stressed to be “happy Mommy” and snap at them when they need me most. I’m still in shock he’s moving away.

So many emotions. So little headspace.

Update: We’ve decided to put off telling the kids for a couple weeks. They’re heading off to visit grandparents for the next week and a half. We don’t want to tell them and not be with them for questions and comfort for the days right after. So, this will loom for a bit longer.

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6 Responses so far.

  1. […] wrote back in July about our impending talk to the kids about daddy leaving. I wrote this post in my notebook on August 17, but neglected to publish it. I […]

  2. Sharon says:

    Did you tell them yet? How did it go?

  3. The whole thing is a journey for you all – but remember, kids are resilient and change would have come to your family anyway. We all face job change or loss, or opportunity in other cities. Some of us move, some will care for other family members, some will fall ill. All our kids will face change or upheaval at some point. Love them, keep talking to them, listening to them, surround them with people who love and support them (adults especially!) Family are the people we choose, and adults who care for them and provide support and love will help them find the right paths. And do your best to live a good life yourself, because a happy mama can better support her kids in what they need. Ask for help, find your own opportunities and let your kids see you happy and healthy. How else will they know how to do it? And be as constructive as you can about their father. My SIL is married to her third husband – and at her oldest’s sports events, it wasn’t uncommon to see the boy’s father AND her second husband of ten years AND her current husband – all in the stands, cheering for a boy they all loved. It’s okay for kids to learn adults aren’t perfect, and life brings change, but the more good they see, the more good they will emulate. I wish you smooth sailing through these big changes, Jacki. Hang on, and better days will come eventually.

  4. Amanda says:

    As a now 21 year old who went through my parents divorce when I was 8 years old I won’t lie and say it won’t be hard on the kids, but you know that. My dad was just moving to another house in the same city but my brother and I still laid in bed with him the night he left and cried for hours. I can’t imagine what my mom was feeling while we were doing that. I can only imagine the guilt and pain she felt for us.

    The only advice I can offer from the perspective of a kid is to as much as possible keep the communication between your kid’s father and you as open and polite as you can. To this day my parents still won’t be in the same room together for very long and never use nice tones when they have to talk on the phone together. My brother and I sensed that tension more than anything and that was the worst part of it all, knowing that our parents couldn’t stand each other. The two people who created us, couldn’t stand to even be civil to one another for our sake and that hurts. Kids going through a divorce just need love and to know that no one is to blame, especially not them and most importantly of all that neither of their parents are bad people. The blame game is the most painful part of a divorce that can most certainly be avoided.

    I wish you the best of luck as I know it’s not going to be easy for you.

  5. I had to be a part of one of these conversations when my (now almost 15 years old) son was 3. It was a bit easier then as he was young and really didn’t have much of a relationship with his dad (I was his primary caregiver since birth and his dad wasn’t a very involved parent).

    It was harder explaining why his stepfather (my DD’s bio) was being removed from his life as he was 6 at that time and had developed a relationship. (My DS went to live with his dad not long after he turned 7 due to severe behaviour issues towards myself and my DD who was only 2 for “getting rid of his 2nd Dad”, thankfully we have a much better relationship now).

    I am currently going through a 3rd split from my 2nd (& 3rd) husband who is the only “Daddy” my DD has ever known. (We have been married & divorced 2x and tried another attempt at living together, this time without the added pressure of being married, but it’s not working out). I am the one who is taking my DD and moving 6-7 hours away. She is dealing with it well so far.

    It’s surprising how resilient and adaptable children are. In many cases we, as single or married moms (and dads), often fear the worst and in reality things turn out to be a lot less traumatic to our children than we figured they would be.

    From reading your previous posts, I am pretty sure that your children will adapt and deal with the new family dynamics much better than you believe.

    Wishing you an easy transition into the new and possibly very exciting life.

  6. Alex says:

    Oh, wow. The poor kids. Opportunity? No opportunity would pull me away from my kids. Can’t imagine making that choice. I hope you guys are ok. 🙁

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