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what am I not getting, is it boundaries, detachment, I just don't know.

Old 07-05-2011, 05:26 PM
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what am I not getting, is it boundaries, detachment, I just don't know.

AH calls me today to see if he could borrow my car because he bought 17 yo DD a canoe and needs to pick it up.

DD has been dropping hints about wanting a canoe or a kayak or this or that and I let her know that maybe it might be a Christmas or birthday present or something she could buy with the money she is making working this summer.

This I believe is my responsibility as a parent.

What is my problem is that I am expecting AH to suddenly be a real partner and discuss with me what we buy or don't buy our kids.

He didn't and what did I do, blow up of course. Going on about DD shouldn't get what she wants just because she wants it. What about special occasion presents, what about the other kids and on and on.

The kicker is that he never interacts with me and I am sure in his mind it is no big deal that he did what "he personally wanted to do" and I am expecting otherwise.

I don't see where this will ever change, whether AH is recovering or not. This man does not want to take responsibility for being a partner nor does he want to take responsibility for being out of the marriage and being a responsible parent.

He just wants to do what he wants to do and I am just the mother that takes care of his kids so he doesn't have to. He doesn't get to deal with my younger two wondering why M gets a canoe and they don't or before this why she got a camera and they didn't .

What will happen when AH realizes he can't afford to buy them whatever they want when they want it. And what about teaching his own kids to be responsible consumers.

Just another one of my values stepped on and squashed, not considered, dismissed, interfering with whatever AH wants to do.

AAARGH, I can't take this and yet in the back of mind I keep second guessing myself, thinking I should just let this go cause when I don't I am interfering with his d*mn recovery.

Is this insane?
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Old 07-05-2011, 05:48 PM
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It sounds like you have a genuine problem with one of his points of view on parenting, I don't think that has anything to do with his recovery. It's obviously just who he is. As long as you are actively raising your children together, I can understand why you would want to address it.

I agree, it sucks that one daughter gets whatever she wants simply by mentioning it to him, especially when you are trying to teach responsibility and foster good spending habits, work ethic, and goal-setting. As a younger sibling myself, it was hard to watch my sister get more than me. I still struggle with feelings of inadequancy.

It's hard to detach from behavior that teaches your children the exact opposite lessons that you are trying to instill in them.

That's all I got, just support, and hugs
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Old 07-05-2011, 06:04 PM
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You are not responsibile for his recovery, you are not responsibile for his behavior, you are not responsibile for his emotional IQ and you are not responsibile for how he feels if he cannot continue to be impulsive and no longer buy everything he wants to for his children.

He is a child in a mans body, he is an irresponsible parent. Accept it.

You need to let go, for you, not him. Expect nothing from him and you will not be disappointed.

Unfortunately parents play favorites, it is wrong, but, this also is out of your control. All you can do is try and keep a sense of balance within your home, be fair, love them equally and don't let his nonsense interfer with your peace and well being.

I know this is a difficult situation, and, I am sorry that your children are being exposed to his lack of parenting skills.
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Old 07-05-2011, 06:04 PM
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I actually have a great relationship with my kids' dad, but I strongly disagree with him about buying the kids expensive cars (both have totalled their cars), and various other ways in which he gives them what I think they should be earning.

HOWEVER, I have decided that what he gives them or spends on them or helps them out with is really not my business. I've expressed my opinion, but the bottom line is that he has his own relationship with them, while I have mine.

I doubt that it will ruin your daughter (or the other kids) for him to give her the canoe. My older son commented to me a couple of years ago that he sort of appreciated the fact that I often say "no" to things.

Personally, I think making it into a power struggle does more harm than his giving her the canoe will.

Just my two cents...
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Old 07-05-2011, 06:13 PM
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My take is this. He bought her the canoe. OK. He will do himself in the first time she 'wants' something and he cannot afford it.

Now, just because he bought her a canoe does NOT mean you have to lend him your car. It is not your problem.

Simple answer is No you can't borrow my car and change the subject.

He is not going to change. She is going to get mixed 'signals' for a while, and think that when she wants something that Mom doesn't jump right away and get, daddy will get it for her. She will learn. He will disappoint her. She is 17 and will now start learning some hard lessons of her own.

Keep working your program, the program you 'wished' he would work. Your daughter will see the difference.

J M H O

Love and hugs,
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Old 07-05-2011, 06:24 PM
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Thanks for helping me with perspective.

After typing my first post I called AH to tell him I am sure DD kept on him about wanting the canoe and I could understand him wanting to get it and he said no I don't understand.

He then proceeded to tell me how he has been discussing this with her for over a year and that he maybe he didn't express it but he has wanted to get a canoe for the family for a long time.

Well I told him it wasn't a maybe that he didn't express it, it was no he didn't express it and I also told him I was glad that he and DD had all those great conversations.

Then I went ahead to bang my head against the wall again and said what is really bothering me is that we as the parents/partners haven't had those conversations.

So he starts telling me how his relationship with his kids are what he has and they didn't get broken and going on to blame me for our relationship not working.

I told him I was not taking the blame for that and then he tried to blame me for wanting everything to work instantaneously.

Well, nothing about our relationship works and 1 1/2 years is far from instantaneous.

I told him I am done with him telling me I want everything instantaneously and guess what he said - this conversation is over.

I know I must have better things to do, why do I keep getting sucked in to this.
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Old 07-05-2011, 06:35 PM
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You're sane. He's an a**.

You fall into normalcy and expect normalcy...been there done that.........

He'll always always shock you outta that habit...........

just give em a minute.........lol

I have felt your pain. I have cried your moans........Eventually, you get tired and move on. hopefully.

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Old 07-05-2011, 06:43 PM
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You keep getting involved in these useless conversations because you have not let go and are obsessed with what he does or doesn't do. You are still trying to change him.

I do agree with Laurie, no is a complete sentance.
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Old 07-05-2011, 08:15 PM
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Originally Posted by dancingnow View Post
AAARGH, I can't take this and yet in the back of mind I keep second guessing myself, thinking I should just let this go cause when I don't I am interfering with his d*mn recovery.
How about it's interfering with your recovery, never mind his.

He's not going to co-parent the way you want him to. You can't control what he does, and getting frustrated over it changes nothing other than taking you away from your own recovery.

You can control what you do in your parenting. You can continue to be consistent with your kids regardless of what he does.

Kids need stability and consistency.

Make any sense?
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Old 07-05-2011, 08:37 PM
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My take is this. He bought her the canoe. OK. He will do himself in the first time she 'wants' something and he cannot afford it.

Now, just because he bought her a canoe does NOT mean you have to lend him your car. It is not your problem.

Simple answer is No you can't borrow my car and change the subject.
Laurie is so right on this. When I disengage (it's tricky but oh so worth the work) and stop trying to have a relationship with AH, then create clear boundaries and not rescue him, I am one happy camper.

Just another one of my values stepped on and squashed, not considered, dismissed, interfering with whatever AH wants to do.

AAARGH, I can't take this and yet in the back of mind I keep second guessing myself, thinking I should just let this go cause when I don't I am interfering with his d*mn recovery.

Is this insane?
When I feel this way I'm still trying to interact with AH like he's not an alcoholic.I"m not accepting his limitations, despite knowing them inside and out. And yes, I feel SO insane when entangled with him.

So yeah, for me, the solution is to detach emotionally, have very little expectation (other than expecting him to surprise me with his clever antics in an attempt to pull me into his madness) and have very clear boundaries. But what I sense in your post is just not accepting that he's an A and won''t step all over your values. It might be lingering resentment, flaring up. Getting rid of resentments helps to free me as well. Then, those buttons can't be pushed.

Good luck, you'll figure it out!
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Old 07-06-2011, 06:45 AM
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I've dealt with this kind of thing for years with my AW, even before she started drinking heavily. We only have one child, so playing favorites isn't a problem. Spoiling her always has been, though.

Once I came home and discovered that AW had gone out and bought one of those above ground pools, without even consulting me. By the time we had it installed, it cost us $5,000. Years later we had to pay some guy $200 to haul it away.

I guess some people are just that way... maybe those who are prone to addictive behavior are also more indulgent toward their children. Could it be a general lack of responsibility?
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