At what point is it going to stop being so awful that my boys are doing so much with HER? I guess, it's getting easier in a way. It's not overwhelmingly painful, just head-shakingly annoying. Not that they see that. I was the perfect co-parent today. Fuck yeah. I listened with enthusiasm as they told me about going to the movie with Daddy and J---- that they had said they so wanted to go see with me. "I understand," I say, "We'll go see another movie. There are several you've said you want to see." "Sounds like fun," I respond when I heard that they went bowling with Daddy and girlfriend. But the winner was hearing that they when the winter storm caused a power outage at his house, they all got picked up in her car and had dinner and a sleepover at her apartment. Calm. Breathe. I took it all in stride. Didn't freak out. Because I don't. I take my cues from them. They seem happy? Great. "Well, it's nice you didn't have to sleep in a cold house," I say.
My MC says with enthusiasm that he likes her. He doesn't get it. Just as well. Better for him in the short term, and maybe the long term. The LO doesn't really seem to have an opinion. He's too little. He doesn't use her name, just calls her "Daddy's friend."It's my NO that is struggling. He has expressed repeatedly that he is unhappy about spending that much time with her. Wishes they could have gone to the movie with just Daddy. Didn't want to spend the night at her house, blames his little brother for refusing to go back home because he didn't want to spend the night in the dark cold house. I've gently asked him if he's talked to his father about how he feels. "Kind of," seems to be his answer. I don't know how much I'm supposed to sympathize. I want to say something like it's hard, all these changes, isn't it. But I'm worried even that might make him think I'm wanting him to think it's hard, to not like it. But I think at some level he gets it.
And at some level, so does the MC. He is such an enigma. We were cuddled in his bed talking one night last week (in a rare intimate moment discussing the divorce experience) and he asked me questions again about what caused it. And he said, "is it because Daddy didn't talk about his feelings?" Where did he get that? I know I have NOT said that. I have said that one thing I've learned in this experience is how important it is to talk about our feelings and how I want them to learn how to be good at that. I have never made the connection with his father. I asked him where he got that idea. From me? "No,"he answered, "Daddy said that." I questioned a little bit more, and then he wasn't sure at all if Daddy had said that or if he just came up with that idea. Interesting I thought. That isn't the obvious reason for the divorce, but the fact that my STBEX refused to confront scary confrontational feelings MOST DEFINITELY contributed to the mess he got himself into which was part of all of this.
Anyhow, my big internal question for the evening was whether or not I should send him a simple text saying, "in the unlikely event that you find yourself with the boys and without power again, please let me know, and I'll take the boys and trade you a different day rather than taking them to her house." I decided to let it rest. Not at all easy to do. But I see no potentially positive outcome from it. He doesn't abide by his agreements to me, so what does it matter if I ask him to respect that anyhow.