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My son is finally opening up...

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Was sitting with my son last night while he was drinking his hot milk and cinnamon before bed.

Out of nowhere he started talking about my ex. He takes things very deep and it takes a lot to get him to open up. I knew that he has really been missing him and I've been really worried as they haven't seen each other since a couple of months after the breakup when my son went up to him in work and my ex just said hello and then said good bye and that he had to get back to work.

This is the guy who lived with us for two years and encouraged my son to call him dad.

I'm a pretty level headed person and I have forgiven him for everything that happened between us; feelings change and there is nothing you can do about that but everytime I think about the decisions that he has obviously made regarding my son (despite my making it absolutely clear that he is welcome to see him and should he decide to do so that he will be met with nothing but friendliness and respect in all regards from me) I want to knock his teeth back his throat.

I understand that there are plenty of people on here whose children are being blanked by their actual biological fathers so I am aware that I don't have much to complain about but I really just want the best for my son so I'm wondering if anyone has any advice for me with regards to how to deal with this?

Should I press him to talk about it? Or should I just leave him bring it up?

We had a nice little chat last night so I hope that at least his saying that he was missing him helps him to feel better. We had a good laugh about all the stupid things my ex used to do and he seemed to go to bed in a good mood so hopefully if I handle this right then it'll be a big help.

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This breaks my heart!


Kids tend to blame themselves for everything when things so south in a relationship, so it is very good that you are talking to him about it... He needs to understand that your ex is handling things badly, and that his leaving has to do with him not wanting to be with you, and has nothing to do with your son or anything you son said or did.


We try to shield kids from bad things in life, but people do leave and they do die etc. Kids may blame themselves, but they are remarkably resilient if they recognize it is not their fault, and that you are fine and everything will be fine. One the key things they've learned about kids in breakups is that if the primary parent (you) recovers and keeps a normal life going for herself and her kids, then the kid is fine. But if the parent is constantly depressed and lets the home routine deteriorate as a result, then the child suffers more.


So if you are keeping his routine up and letting him talk about it and having it be a positive experience between you and your son (i.e., handling it the way you did), he will be fine.


And it is perfectly acceptable for you to say you think your ex is being a putz for acting the way he is, because he IS being a putz. Many adults try to lie and cover up bad behavior thinking it will shield a child, but if they do that, then all they are teaching the child is play a game and distance themselves from reality and their true feelings, which is never a good thing. If your ex behaved badly, it will HELP your son if you say he behaved badly and call the behavior for what it is. That way, your son can put the blame where it belongs, on your ex, not on himself.

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I know where you are coming from....


My son did the same thing with a guy I was involved with who really made a connection with him too.


Even an entire year later... out of know where he would mention this guy. We would be walking to school and suddenly he would ask if he was ever going to get a step dad and well X would make a great step dad (ouch we'd not seen him for over a year.) It really pulled my heartstrings because I knew what a great guy he was and this just reinforced it. I just smiled and said yes someday you might have a step dad and your right X would make a great step dad but I don't know if he will be your step dad... we will take our time and see what happens.


I always just said something nice about my X or just agreed with my son who was 6 at the time.


Be careful though.... I was sooooo traumatized about how my relationship affected my son that I did the exact opposite with the next guy I dated. I dated a great man on and off for 2yr and NEVER met his kids or allowed him to meet mine... as you can guess the relationship never progressed and he finally decided enough was enough and moved on.... heartbreak for me all over again.


BUT, I did meet a really wonderful man once again (cause yes despite the rumor they are all taken they are still out there... of course I did my time and weeded out lots of bad potatoes before hand!) After realizing I let my fear take over the last time I was able to find a good balance. My son is really bonding with my fiance'. It wasn't as easy as my son is autistic and my X just had a natural talent for understanding him. My fiance' is working really hard - his parenting style is just different and he doesn't understand the subtle issues with autism. But, he is reading books and doing wonderful. My son is happy.


I still talk to X. My son doesn't know this. I didn't want him confused but now that he is bonding with my fiance' and well he is older I'm not worried if my son sees X. I don't see that he will be upset. He will just do a lot of "remember when" and thats not a bad thing!


Let your son grieve his loss in his own way. Just as you are grieving yours. Listen and agree but be honest. Its not wrong to let him know that you are sad too. Help him remember the special times and reinforce that just because its the two of you now those just don't go away.



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