A Late Holiday

I had a meeting with my ex and I have the kids today. I am excited to see them, yet I feel weird after not seeing them for two months. I am not there to know their friends or even the little things that they are doing. I just found out today the my son wants to do a certain program in high school.

Being a non custodial parent is hard in that I always feel like the kids can be taken away at any time. They are amazing kids. I just do not feel like a good enough mother to them.


Somehow I got Through

Christmas is a holiday with conflicting memories. I used to have a great time at my Aunt’s house, yet I remember my parents being forced.

This Christmas was the first Christmas that I could not see my kids because I had to go into the hospital. I felt like I was being punished and that I could not even hold it together enough to be able to see them. I had to go inpatient. I needed the staff and the support.

In two days I have a meeting with my ex to see about when I can see the kids again. I hope it will go well. Who knows with my ex.

Christmas at our home was great. I was able to see the cat stick her head into a treat bag. I received some cool art supplies and a bubble light. I was able to spend the day with my husband just relaxing.

I hope to get my kids back soon. I miss them. They at least still talk to me at night.

DBT is going well. I like keeping the diary cards each day and keeping track of my symptoms. Right now we are focusing on mindfulness. After the new year we will begin emotion regulation. I know that I need it and that I am going to need to work really hard to be able to use it.

My sleeping is like it always is. I found I get more sleep without taking sleep medication. I am going to see how it work out for the next few nights.

The holidays are almost over and for the most part they have been good. Let’s see how the beginning of the new year will go.

More Lies and Deceit 

I have already lost one of my children for reasons that I do not understand. Now, I feel like I am losing another. My ex and his wife tell my kids that I do not care, that I am not contributing enough money,’and that I am choosing a life that does not include them.

In reality, my ex is getting the child support ordered by the court. I am transporting them according to the agreement, and I see them as much as possible.

Sometimes I feel like it is a battle that is already lost. My ex has the money to put them in camps and go on vacations. He has them more and they tend to gravitate toward what he says.

I get blamed for the divorce. Yes, I will take credit for what I did, yet he seems to leave out what he was doing. My mental illness is said not to exist on one hand and then to be the cause of everything on the other. I am sure that is confusing.

Inevitably, it is leading to my kids not wanting to have anything to do with me. They have taken their father’s view that I am not good enough and do not do enough. Sometimes I think that the best that I can hope for is for them to look back and realize that I did what I could. I was not perfect, yet I did my best:

Feeling Horrible is the Norm

Three weeks left in the semester. Three weeks of having to wake up, go to class, and finish work. My mind knows that I need to complete this in order to move forward. Well, part of my mind. The other part of my mind is over this. All it wants is to be able to rest, stay home, avoid people, and isolate in every way possible.

Not that isolating for long periods is helpful, yet there are some times that one just needs to be alone and be able to journal, color, or watch tv alone. There are still the mornings where I need to see my therapist or psychiatrist. There are still the visits with my kids. So, I cannot isolate for to long even if I want to.

Right now, I am having issues with eating. To much, not to little. I am having thoughts of self harm that I need to use skills in order not to act on to stay out of the hospital. There are mornings that I just do not want to get up because my body does not have the strength to get out of bed.  It is like my joints and muscles are not functioning. I just want to be able to sleep.

This weekend was one example. I just wanted to sleep and I used my self to do what I had to complete. Even though i completed the task that day, the next day, I could not function. I could barely stand up and I felt that I was in a fog.

This morning I still feel that way. The fog that envelopes me. The parts that are fighting to get their way of just staying home. The parts that are angry at having to go anywhere and therefore want to act out. That normally means lashing out at people around us. We are trying not too. We are trying to be appropriate and promising parts that we will go directly home.

Instead of self harm, we think about the fact that we promised our doctor that we would stay safe and we respect him. It would feel so much better to just be able to act on those impulses.

An entirely different issue is the kids. One of my kids has decided that he is no longer going to talk or communicate with me. His father supports this and is not assisting in attempting to get a relationship going again. My other two children are struggling. They want to see me, yet they are being told that I do not care, I am not giving their other parent enough money, that I do not see them as much as I can, and then the list goes on. It seems like no matter what I do, it is not going to be enough. I fear that what happened with one of my children will happen with the other two. It is just a matter of time. Money and power go a long way and can easily manipulate a child.

A Child Should Not Hace to Choose

Ten years. Well almost. That is how long it has been since separating from my ex. I was naive then. I thought that things were fair and that I would get my kids 50 percent if the time like most people.

Instead, it was the beginning of a nightmare. There have been three clear court issues since then. My ex used my mental illness and financial influence to obtain physical custody. I had a win in that I got joint legal custody.

Today, the kids are teenagers. Instead of just following an order, I am put down and my kids are told that I am a bad mother. That I am not doing as much as I should. I have even been told that high school graduations are not a place for me because I am not there enough. When I want to be there more, I am refused.

The kids are getting old enough to choose what they want according to my ex. My oldest has already chosen not to communicate. He believes that I am hurting his father. It must be tough to always hear negative talk about your parent.

I have determined that as long as my kids want me in their life that I will be there for them. Even when they no longer choose to come visit, I will attempt to see how they are doing. It is scary to know that one day they may not talk to me. That I will not be there for the big events or the holidays. That I will be shut out.

As a non-custodial parent it is hard in so many ways. To know that your children may not want to see you. To be able to be looked up and found that you do not have custody. People then assume that you must have done something wrong. Sometimes the other parent just has a better attorney. Sometimes, there is no way to “win” only a way to have a relationship that is far from ideal. 

My hope is that my kids will continue to communicate with me, yet there is no guarantee and I do not have the power to see into the future.

When the Maltreatment Continues

9 years. 9 years since I left me ex. I thought that leaving him would stop the constant verbal negativity. It only seems to have upped that and the psychological games that he seems to want to play.

Each weekend the kids are supposed to come now there is something. The 3-5 hours of text normally end with how he works and is better than me. How I am neglecting my children, even though every time I ask to see them more they are busy. 

This holiday is no exception. From being called a bad mother to letting me know just how bad I am, the texts seems to just be getting worse. Last night even included graphics.

After all this time, why can he not just follow the agreement. Why is every weekend an issue? Why can’t I just have a life where he drops the kids off at the scheduled time and does not insult me or make the kids feel guilty for coming over?

Even leaving him and having agreements does not stop the abuse that he still doles out. I feel like I am a target at this point and no matter where I move or what I do, he will come after me.

Just Want to Get Through the Weekend

This weekend is my weekend with the kids. I have one child who refuses to come and another who is having a friend over for a sleepover. That child will come next time, yet I am realizing that soon there is a possibility that none of them will want to come.

They live in affluent neighborhood an hour away from me. Their friends are there. They are at that age where they want to be with and see their friends. That is a normal part of growing up. I just wished that they lived closer and that their parents would not think of where I live as a slum! 

Then there is the child who does not speak to me. He has taken the position that I have somehow wronged my ex-husband and will not come over or speak to me. I do not think he is going to change his mind very soon and his father fully supports his decision. To me, he is still a child and should not be told what is going on from anyone’s perspective.

In some states what I am describing is clearly parental alienation. We do not have that where I live! For some reason that seems to have gotten skipped over.

Then there is all of the reading and school work that I have to do. This semester is filled with reading and papers. I just have to try to keep up and not get behind.

Slowly Moving Forward

Life is overwhelming right now. The end of the semester, the holidays, and everything that is still going on legally with my ex. Add to that finals, papers, and a grad school application. Plus teaching dance one night a week. 

My doctor actually wrote me a prescription to take time out for me. When exactly I am supposed to make that time is still a mystery. 

My brain cannot handle anymore. I am hoping to get through these last couple of weeks. My application for grad school has stalled. How do I limit personal statements to 300 meaningful words that will convey how much I want to work with children and families in need. There does not seem to be enough space.

The holidays are hard this year. I am lucky to have two of my children excited to spend time with me. My oldest child has chosen not to be here yet again. I have tried to talk and figure out how to fix the relationship, yet nothing seems to work. I am so afraid that I have lost him at this point. I am still fighting to get him back. I am still fighting for a relationship.

Then there are my abusers. My parents. I would love to be able to have a relationship with them. If only we could break through the facade that was built up over the years and accept reality. Yeah, things were horrible when I was younger. They were controlling and manipulative. Now, we are all adults, yet they think that time is over for any kind of relationship. I think that it is to hard for them to face what they have done and how much hurt and struggle it has caused.

I am lucky to have people in my life that remind me that life is worth living and being a part of. People who will cuddle on the couch and just watch a show. People who continue to tell me that I can do this even though every part of me doubts myself. People who see past the illness to the person inside that wants to get out. People who just give a hug for no reason at all and expect nothing in return.

The holidays are hard. No doubt about that. They bring up memories that I would rather forget. They also allow me to spend time with the people who accept me. This year. I am trying to focus on those that are there and do want me in their lives. Sounds easy, right!!

Parental Alienation

These words make me so angry. In the state that I live in, it is not even recognized. All I could do would be to go to court for contemp of what my ex is not following in the agreement. I have not seen one of my children since July. Even though he is a teenager, he is still not at an age where he can make his own choices. My ex lets him choose.

My ex’s new spouse degrades my kids for coming to see me. She tells them that I do not pay child support, that I am not a fit parent, that I do not do anything for them. Every time they go back to my ex’s house, they get an earful. No wonder one of them has stopped visiting!

I am not a person who has the means to hire lawyers all of the time. I wish that I could. I feel for others out there like me who are either kept from their children or constantly have to hear that someone thinks they are a bad parent and degrades their parent in front of them.

My kids do not deserve to be punished for seeing me. No parent deserves to be talked about negatively to their children. Parental alienation needs to end and it needs to be a crime in every state.