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lotusbird311
lotusbird311 asks:
Q:

How to deal with the pain of it?

Hello everyone, here is my situation: while I was pregnant with my 2 year old daughter, her father had several affairs.  Though I suspected at the time--I was devastated when I found out for sure.  I am a single mother now and my daughter sees her dad and his girlfriend for an overnight twice a week.
It is soooo painful for me when my daughter asks for her father--or asks for his girlfriend.  I don't let it show, and I tell her, "daddy misses you too and you will see him soon!" or I will say, "I know how much you love your daddy and he loves and misses you too."  But inside it hurts like hell and I'm jealous and insecure.  I am afraid that my daughter will choose her dad over me.  There is nothing I can do about that, he and I have almost no contact.  He continues to needle me and do small petty things to hurt me.  I try to ignore it and try not to engage with him at all.  He acts like I am the one who was cheating--he shows up with his girlfriend, tells me our daughter calls her 'mommie' etc.
I need feedback and emotional support.
In Topics: Single parent families, Divorce Issues
> 60 days ago

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Expert

ShirleyCressDudley
Nov 30, 2012
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What the Expert Says:

Hi,
You've been through a tough situation and are "standing tall" and doing a fantastic job. You are correct in encouraging your daughter to spend time with her dad, and only say supportive things to her about her dad.

What I'm not hearing is what you are doing for YOU. Single parents try so hard to be great parents that they forget to take care of themselves. But, if you are drained emotionally, then you have nothing to give to your daughter.

Set aside a little time everyday to do something for you- take a longer shower, read a magazine, have a cup of tea- something you enjoy. Once a week, you need to schedule something a little longer- just for you.

To be a mom, don't forget to take care of yourself.

With kindness,

Shirley Cress Dudley, MA LPC NCC FACMPE
Director of The Blended and Step Family Resource Center
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Additional Answers (1)

JamielaIsmail
JamielaIsmail , Teacher writes:
It is a difficult call but you are doing well.  Always encourage a positive answer (even when you don't think it's fair) when she asks about her dad.  
Just be the best mom you can be.  Do fun things with her and DON'T FORGET YOURSELF.

Use the fact she wants to spend more time with her dad in a good way where you can spend time with yourself and friends and family.  Attend workshops/chat to other moms - making sure you do not speak about your problem.  Does he really need your mind time?  That is wasted energy.  People will avoid you.

It is time to move on.  Easy to say but difficult to do.  It is a big mind shift but only you can do that.  

Set some goals - personal, religious, financial, social/community involvement and family - this will keep you focused and less insecure.  YOU CAN DO IT by setting time limits on these goals and before you know it, you are above him and he will envy you because of your achievements.  

So go out there and make it happen for yourself - no one will do it for you. This is a good new year's resolution for 2013.

Good luck and be strong the first step is always the worst and scariest.
> 60 days ago

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