* Prices may differ from that shown
I know very well that a serious break up is extremely tough and a hard thing to cope with. I was beforehand mislead to believe that when people break up, they break up for a relevant reason and they're always far more happier than they were before. I was unfortunately involved in a major family break up recently. It was my nan and grandad's infact.
For some background information, this is what I know and what i have been told: My nan met my grandad 41 years ago. They got married four years later and moved to spain to live a 'better' life. This is where they had their three children, my mother and my two aunties. They had three children in the space of five years and once the youngest, my mother, was six years old - they moved back to England in a stunning eight bedroomed house. They knew very well that they were unable to live there because financially they didn't have enough monthly income to pay the mortgage - so they quickly got in debt. However, when my mother and aunties were growing up, my nan and grandad wanted them to live like upper class people - which they did. My mother was the last of the three children to move out, when she was 22 years old. My nan and grandad then moved into a three bedroom semi detached house just five years ago. During this period of time, my nan suffered depression and was unable to control her anxiety. This caused problems for my grandad and he suffered damage from a severe car accident. Since that moment, the arguements between my grand parents were frequent, leaving the pair of them devastated after every arguement, they didn't sleep in the same bed, or spent time in the same room even. Recently, just four months ago my nan come to live with me and my family.
My nan and grandad announced four months ago that they were getting a divorce, although the family knew about these on going arguements, the split was very un-expected and an emotional time for us all, even the little grand children who were too young to properly understand the concept of the two of them splitting up. The arguements that they had have now stopped, because they have no contact, but my nan will never stop complaining about their arguements, mostly financially based.
I have never experienced two people's break up effecting so many people emotionally. Our whole family have been affected, because for relationships you're supposed to look up to your elders, believing that it is possible to spend the rest of your life with somebody.
As far as my advice goes, i can only say that hobbies and friends are important during the period of the break up. We have kept my nan busy by making her go swimming regularly and get her doing gardening most weekends. For hobbies, make new ones because there is no point in her having hobbies that she did with my grandad because she will remain emotionally attached - she has to see the bigger picture and try new things. Friends, make friends who will not constantly ask about the in's and out's of your relationship - although it is helpful to have a friend that you can sometimes talk to about the split.
on ciao under d9gymg
You know, there are some things that I have all the experience necessary to write about, but I avoid like the plague. Things that I could wax not exactly lyrical about, but could offer so much personal information on, but that I choose to remain silent about. What am I on about? You tell me (I appreciate advice) . No, absolutely seriously for once (there's a rarity, I know), it's divorce and, in this case divorce and children.
For those of you who do not know me, I have been a member of this site for 9 years now, and I used to be a frequent contributor. I used to think I wrote with occasional insight and a liberal dose of irreverance. You may agree. You may not. That is not at issue here.
In 1998 I met a lovely lady who agreed to become my wife. She used to be a contributor on here as well, a much-respected and erudite one. In fact her opinion writing is some of the best I have ever seen, in all these 9 long years.
Anyway, we married in October of 1999 and, in March 2000 we celebrated the birth of our first daughter, E (not named after a class A drug, actually, but I don't see the need to give her name, or that of her sister). In October 2002 she was joined by a sister, R (named after a US movie certificate).
In May 2003 we moved across country to the rural Welsh Marches, so that our childen could grow up nearer to their grandparents.
All was progressing smoothly, I thought, until in October 2004, on a sunny Sunday morning, C (the former Mrs Nolly), told me that she thought we should separate, as our interests had diverged, or some reason like that.
This isn't the place to go through the feelings I had then, as it is not relevant to this article, but you can rest assured that I thought my life was at an end. What was left for me? What could I do? What should I do? What should I have done? Well, that is irrelevant, as that is all ancient history now.
The important thing well, the only thing, is that I wanted to make sure that my girls were okay. At the time E was only four and her sister had just turned two. The first thing, the only thing that mattered in fact, was that, no matter how much latent upset and, perhaps, hostility there was in the house (my seemingly idyllic domestic life was in tatters), it should not materialise in front of the girls. I am an extremely easy-going and affable chap normally, so the main concern for me was not to be upset in front of them. Sometimes it was not so bad, but at others it was the hardest thing I have ever done. In time it was explained to the girls that mummy and daddy still loved both of them with all their hearts, but they didn't love each other enough to live together any more.
Eventually, in February 2005 (3 months after the split!) C and the girls moved out and went to live in a little cottage up the road. I would still be able to see them regularly, and we would still do things 'as a family'. At first it was so, so hard but, with time, it became easier. Well, not easier, less painful. I suppose you could say that one of the hardest things in the world is to say goodnight to your children in the knowledge that you are leavign the house in which they live to go to your own.
The next stop along the line on this (un)magical mystery tour was when my ex-wife entered a relationship with a man and he moved in. Milestone (or should that be millstone) number two is when you hear your own children call their mother's new partner daddy. It hurt, but I got over it. I did, of course, never show the girls my hurt.
Step three - how do you cope when, when you have your daughters with you, your mother starts to slag off your ex-wife and her new partner? Well, if you have any sense, I think, you have words in private. I politely told mother that she was entitled to entertain any opinions she wanted but, in the presence of my daughters, I would appreciate it if she would keep them to herself. Mercifully for me, she has.
Step four (this is becoming an instruction manual, I am sorry) - emotional heartache. I mean that for the girls, not me, as I am big enough and ugly enough to look after myself, or at least I think I am. In January 2009, after living at their house as their stepfather, my ex's partner walked out - just walked out, went missing, and has not been seen in the locality to this day. My ex was distraught, and turned to me for help and support, and the girls, of course, needed their daddy. At the time I was working in South London, and commuting at weekends. That weekend I stayed around and saw the girls, and put them to bed and drove to work at 2am! So I guess the moral to that tale is to try to be there for them when you need them.
So now we are in 2010, it is a glorious March afternoon and the sun is shining. Where am I with my girls? Well, I no longer work in London, and one day a week I pick them up from school and take them for a milkshake. I also see them every other weekend. They know where I am and that I will drop everything if they are in trouble.
I know, and have no worries, that E and R know that I am daddy and that will never change. No matter what they do, no matter how they wind me up or become troublesome tearaway teenager, I will offer them unconditional love as ever.
I would like to add at this juncture that my ex-wife and I are good friends. I do not harbour grudges and prefer to forgive, even if I do not forget. The girls are happy in their life with mummy and their new stepdad who, in my view, is a vast improvement over the old one. That is the important thing.
So, after all this waffle, how can I boil my advice on this situation down to a few pithy points? Here goes...
If you are going through separation and divorce:
a) Never let any children become the focus of an argument
b) Try to keep any heated discussions to times when the children are not around
c) If your split is not amicable, your beef is with your ex, not the kids, so keep the split out of any time you spend with them
d) Be there for them
e) Love them
f) Do not beat yourself up thinking that you are a poor parent - so long as you act reasonably they will love you as you love them and no matter what is going on in your life they must not and, perhaps more importantly, you must never forget that!
Look after yourselves
One thing which I hope is prevalent in my review writing is that my family mean the absolute world to me. My parents have passed their values to me and they have shaped the person that I am today. I watch programs like Supernanny and I see how children behave, I just know I wouldn't have dared to behave that way for my parents... make no mistake, we were dysfunctional in our own ways, but I think having a family, whether that be your blood relatives, parents, spouse, offspring, siblings, or whether it's a step family, or whether it's a home made family of people you care about and cohabit with, then I think everyone needs one for personal development and to make them in to an emotionally stable person.
Meet my family:
Mam (Carole), Dad (Steve), Sister (Sarah) + Dog (Rusty). Skoda on the drive and 2 bed semi in a nice part of the town.
I wasn't allowed to watch trainspotting until I was 18. Growing up my parents weren't strict as such, but they believed certain things were not suitable for children's eyes. I couldn't stay out after 11pm even at 18 while I was living at home, I wasn't allowed a key to the house until I turned 18 and my parents would still wait up for me on a night to get in. No partner's could stay over, they would have to take the couch. For a treat on birthday's and other seldom occuring occassions we were allowed a McDonald's, the rest of the time it was home cooked food with plenty of vegetables and proteins. This regime sadly did not extend to protection for me and my sister against witnessing bitter and twisted arguments and conflict between the two of them.
We were absolutely showered in love, we never had anything but never wanted either; one of my earliest memories was going to my Nanna's for tea and my Mam eating pilchards on toast for weeks, my Dad just surviving on coffee and toast - I didn't realise it at the time, but this was because they couldn't afford to even have the heating on for us in winter! We got 2nd hand toys for Christmas and we wore cast offs and hand me downs. We could never go on school trips unless my Grandparents paid. We both knew and still know the value of things and are really appreciative even if we don't get very much for a Christmas gift or Birthday, we still love the little things. We were never spoilt, I started working in a bed linen shop at 13 and I bought my own uniforms for school, gave my Mam a couple of quid when I could for her Take a Break magazine and I treat my little sister to sweets all of the time. I never got Nike Air Max trainers handed to me on a plate, or anything of the other fads that came and went, I would have to work to buy them things.
Settling down so young, having two little girls a couple of years apart, working 3 jobs a piece to make ends meet, over so many years led my parents to resent each other and for about 3 years they screamed at each other and tore one another apart until in the end, they decided to call it a day and go their separate ways. We were all devastated. Dad did what any man would do in his situation and moved out so that Mam could stay in their home with us - he didn't want it to end, it was more my Mam in the end. He moved in to a bedsit and I would go round and help him cook and clean. Eventually our lovely family home was sold and all our memories left behind as we moved on to a new life.
Ironically this was the time Pink released Family Portrait.
Mam and Boyfriend Simon
Dad and Wife Sandy, Step Brothers Guy and Wesley
Sarah now living with Paul and baby nephew Aiden
So my Dad met up with his first girlfriend from school at their reunion and decided to marry her. She has two children, boys, Wesley is 21 and Guy is about 14. My Dad always puts me and my sister first, and we always get made exactly the same all of us. He makes a big effort to text me almost every day and he remains good friends with my Mam.
Mam has a boyfriend called Simon who she met on an internet site for Pet lovers. Sad I know. But I am not ashamed, they met as singletons to have some company when walking their dogs, safely. They still don't live together, he just stays on a weekend and a couple of nights every other week (depending on his shift pattern at work). He is generous and kind and he bends over backward for me, my Mam and my sister.
Then Sarah went on a date a couple of years ago and ended up staying over at the boys house, she never came home! They have a baby now and she is an amazing mother, which I guess reflects the way in which we were brought up.
I have many morals and I have many opinions largely influenced by my parents - not all good, for example I do not agree with arguing in front of people - no matter whether they are your children or just people in the pub. I don't think you should inflict your pain and heartache on others. I do however believe that you should work hard at a relationship, perhaps if my parents went to see a relationship counsellor they could have worked it all out. I can't list all my beliefs here, but I live by the values and morals instilled in me by family. Family is the single most important thing to me, I would die for my parents or my sister - I certainly wouldn't bite kick punch and scream obscenities at them as you see in Supernanny! :o)
Children and divorce are two things that just dont go together. When I was 13, my parents divorced, and it competely destroyed me. For a while, I went off the rails, and got into a lot of trouble, both in school and out of it. Looking back, I think that I could have handled the situation a lot better, and I suppose at the time, I kind of blamed myself, even though their seperation has nothing to with the way I was. My sister took quite well, but she was much older than me, and if I am honest, she was the one that got me through it and made me realise that my parents were different people and couldnt be together any more. My brother was only 4 when my parents divorced, so he didnt know what was happening. Luckily, my dad only moved around town, so we still got to see him a lot.
This was the only upside to this divorce. It must have been the most peaceful divorce ever, and now my parents get on better than they did in the last years of their marriage. Both my mam and my dad got remarried, none of their parents I really got along with but you have to learn to live with change, it is a way of life. I suppose that if this situation ever comes up, you need to make sure that you protect your children, and make sure than they know that they didnt do anything wrong, and didnt cause any harm.
It is a lot for a child to deal with, especially at such a young age, so take their feelings into consideration. You need to work out what you are going to do, and more importantly, how you are going to break the news. God forbid this situation ever comes up in my house, I dont know how I would handle it. I look back now, and I realise it was better for everyone.
The effect of divorce on children has long been a debated question. I know about the effects of this because I have been through it as an adult.
However, I have also been through the effects that warring parents have on growing children, as a child.
The most important thing for the children when a marriage ends, is that they know that the whole mess is nothing to do with them.
They have done nothing wrong.
They also need to be reassured that both parents love them although they may not be getting along very well themselves.
I am a great believer in letting older children know what is going on and not keeping things from them. (Omitting the nitty-gritty type details, of course.) This way children can adjust to the situation and see how it is being resolved. Reassurance and contact with both parents, if at all possible, is essential here.
The little ones need to be cuddled and reassured that way. If Mum and Dad are uptight and stressed, they small children tend to pick this up.
Divorced parents is often a better option for a child than parents who stay together 'for the children' and convert their home into a war zone.
This kind of environment can cause serious emotional difficulty in later life and make a children feel threatened, afraid and insecure.
The basic plan should always be to keep stress and upheaval to a minimum for children, in the simplest way possible. Enlist family help, encourage conversation and make sure the child feels safe and secure.
Divorced parents are sometimes better parent for a child to have, than parents who are constantly fighting and unhappy.
I would like to put a different side across to this subject. I am married to a divourcee. I met my husband when he had a 3 year old girl and a 6 year old boy. His marriage had already ended, but it was a messy end, and unfortunately the kids were suffering. I think that in an adult world it is so important to put your own views aside and concentrate on what is best for your children. After all they are the ones that you would do anything to protect, right? Unfortunately it hasnt worked that way for my husband. His ex wife has caused unlimited problems for us over the years, but instead of keeping it away from the children, she has used them in her mind games and had no hesitation in constantly slagging him off to his own children even after 6 years!! This really upsets them. We try not to rise to it, and when the kids come and stay with us every weekend, we try to create a stress free environment, but it is very hard. It is so important to put your children first and bite your tongue to save their pain.
Children and divorce.........Well, this is something that I have no personal experience of whatsoever, so I can not harp on about this too much but I have four people close to me that have had this experience all in different ways and all have had different ways of dealing with it and i thought that some of their experiences may be of help or be of interest to others.
I know that over the years I have seen them all suffer in many ways or not suffer in other ways, but now I am a mother I can definatly say that I have thought of this, as although I am inlove with my husband and him with me...you never know what can happen and there have been times through out the last couple of years when i suffered from my post natel depression that i did think that "how on earth can my hubby put up with me" and "what will happen to the kids"...... it was silly to think this as my husband has supported me through everything but i had to ask him the question and Im glad that he also felt the same as me that we would try and be the best parents we could whether that be together or seperated.
Now I am very lucky as I have been with my husband for 11 years, married for four and we are still very happy, my parents have been together 29 years and my grandparents have been together 65 years, and all but one member of my family are happily married and have been for long periods of time....don't ask me why because I really do not know, My granddad says it's the women in the family we are all kind and generous and have lots of patience!!!! (We have to, to put up with the men in my family hehe!!) But seriously I think we are just very very lucky. But unfortunaly marriages do not always last especially these days and I think that when you decide to end a marriage you need to if possible be as grown up and as amicable as possible especially when having children.
My aunty thought this too and was happily married for five years, until she found out that her husband had been having an affair for all of those five years, so they split up and eventually divorced. At the time my aunty had a little boy of three and was pregnant with a little girl, now as you can imagine she was devastated and did not like her ex husband very much (that's a bit of a understatement... I think my whole family wanted to string him up by a particular part of his body) but she was determined to make sure that her son and her unborn child were not affected.
What she did, angered many members of my family at the time as by rights they were so upset with him for doing what he did and did not think he deserved my aunty being so kind to him, but she would not listen and now when we all look back we can see what she did was a very amazing and unselfish thing.
She sat down with her ex husband when she was 8 and half months pregnant and laid down the following rules;
* They share custody...one week she will have the children 3 days and the following week she will have them four days and so on.
* They share all holidays equally
* They go halves on all birthday/xmas presents and all other extra luxuries the children would have such as school trips or parties.
* They will never ever ever say anything bad about each other in front of the children
* They will always attend school plays/open evenings/sporting events etc together.
There were loads of other rules also they wrote down, and although my aunty says it was extremely difficult for her to do this, as she still loved him and in some ways she wanted him to suffer she could not do it to her children, as they would have suffered also.
Now don't get me wrong it was not easy at first, when my cousin came along although my auntie let her ex come in the delivery room, it was very awkward, and also afterwards she was breast feeding my cousin and she did not want to let her go overnight to her ex's, so they agreed for the first six months he would not have any overnight visits, but he took her and the baby to doctors appointments, for walks, came round for Sunday dinner etc etc and then once she was 6 months and then on to formula and food, he then started to have her at least 2 nights and then they increased it to the 3 and 4 nights when she became at a nursery age.
Now 18 years on, she has two very well adjusted children, whom love their parents very very much, they have great relationships with my aunties new husband also whom she married 4 years ago and also their dads wife (whom is the women he was having a affair with) they love to bits and they have two half sisters whom they adore. I have spoken to my cousins about how the divorce affected them my younger cousin says she never remembers her parents living together so she never knew any different and my boy cousin also says the same, and he thinks he had the best of both parents as he got loads of quality time and his parents always made the effort to make his life as pleasant as possible.
Its really weird sometimes to see there family.....like when my aunty got married again 4 years ago her ex and his wife and their children were there also, his two children were even flower girls...... was a bit crazy....especially when my granddad did his speech....he is 85 and does not mince his words!!! He actually said "she had to kiss a lot of frogs to find her prince, and one big toad also but at last she has found the one for her!!" it was quite funny....my Nan was kicking him under the table at the time!! Hehe!!
So overall I think this was a success story, if you can be adult about it no matter what the situation and put your children first I think it reduces the impact to them dramatically, but i suppose this depends on situations.
Now not all divorces are easy, and my best friend and also my husband both come from family's that have been divorced and remarried and it affected them very badly in different ways, for e.g. My best friend looked at her step father as her dad, as he had been there since she was a baby, which maybe caused a lot of jealousy etc and her biological father she stopped seeing when she was 12, as they just never had a close bond as they rarely saw eachother and when she was at the age of about 12, she had lots of questions she wanted answering and felt a bit confused and she just wanted him to tell her that he loved her and was proud of her, she had a big heart to heart with him and let out a lot of her anger, only to be told that he did not love her and they have never spoken since even though he still has a very close bond with her brother, this has caused her lots of depression throughout her life and made her feel inadequate, she is getting over it more so now, mainly because she is an amazing mum whom does not want her children to see her depressed, but it was a awful divorce process, and I think if it had been managed differently then possibly she may have had a stronger bond with her biological father and maybe saved a lot of years of hurt and confusion.
My husband also had it tough, he had a great mum and a great sister, whom he adores to death, but his father moved away when he was two and saw him maybe only a few times a year, and they have virtually no bond, its getting better since our children have been born and he and his father have made more of an effort and I hope one day they will become close or closer than they are, but there is still a lot of hurt even after all these years.
When people become parents they have a responsibility to do the best for their children, and I would hope if I was ever faced with this situation (which I hope to god never happens) that I could learn from my aunty and try to put my feelings to one side and put my children's happiness and well being first, as even if my husband hurt me, I know he is the most terrific father and would do anything for our children.
Again I will repeat I know that this is all very easy for me to say as I have never been through this, and I can imagine there are loads of different scenarios when you can not just put your feelings to one side, or sometimes maybe the other parents is not suitable to be a part of your Childs life, I would just say that as long as you put your children first and explain things to them along the way in a positive way, and answer all their questions, then I do not think you will see as a dramatic of an impact as many people I know.
i cant actually remember how old i was when my parents got divorced and i dont remember a time without my stepdad so it must have been when i was quite young. i remember having quite frequent visits from my real dad at first, twice a week i believe, but then as we got older we saw him less and less. once a week turned to once a month and as he remarried, seeing us became less of a priority for him. His new wife was awful, she hated kids so we tried to avoid her whenever possible but this meant not seeing our dad.Either way, we lost out. back at home things were plodding along nicely with mum, stepdad and now new baby brother, we moved house and gradually realised our dad wasn't interested in seeing us as that meant he had to pay the child maintenence. I think now, me and my sister had grown up enough to understand what had happened between mum and dad, although we never quite knew the full story. maybe it was a result of mum always slagging dad off but i started to slowly resent him, and everything to do with him. As i grew older and started my own life i refused to even acknowledge him in the street and we would quite happily carry on regardless, one day, he even came in the shop where i worked and was served by me and said nothing. not one single word!
i forgave him for everything once, the complete lack of parenting being the main thing but there were other details which i wont go into. i even moved in with him and wife NUMBER 3 for a while, whilst me and my partner were having some problems. i was 19. i soon found out that i was pregnant and as wifey three couldnt have children, he kicked me out,as to avoid any uncomfort for her! during this time, my sister had a little boy who was born prematurely. My dad and wifey took it upon themselves to turn up at the hospital pissed as farts. She never forgave them for showing her up and i never forgave them for refusing to acknowledge and support my pregnancy. i now have two kids, neither of which now anything about them and they have never and will never see them. On the other hand, my relationship with my stepdad, which had, at times been hard work was blossoming. he adores our children and is the best dad and grandad me and my family could have wished for. People who meet me now will meet him as my dad and will probably never hear anything about my old dad. He had his chance to be a dad and he didn't want to take it. i find it very hard to trust men for some reason, i think it is because i know what it is like to be let down by the one person you are supposed to trust completely.
My Mother fell pregnant with me unexpectedly at the age of 16. In that day and age, when things like this occurred the 'right' thing to do was to get married. Now im not saying that my Mother and Father didn't love each other, im sure that they did, but they were far too young to get married and settle down, they were pretty much forced into marriage for me.
It didn't take long for them to realise that they didn't want to spend the rest of their lives with each other and when I was two years old they decided to get a divorce. When I was three my Mother met another man, this was the man that I grew up with thinking he was my Father.
I still remember the day I met my real father as if it was yesterday. I was six years old and I remember Mum telling me we were going into town shopping, she got me all dressed up in a pretty dress and did my hair in lovely pigtails, I asked why I was getting so dressed up but she never told me at the time.
We arrived in town and waited at the bus terminal, a man then approached us and said hello to Mum, he paid a lot of attention to me but I still didn't know who he was. We went to a local café where we sat down and my Mum told me that this man was my real Father. This was the first time it had ever been mentioned that my step father wasn't my real Dad so I found it quite hard to take in at first, but then my Mum explained everything to me and I understood more. She then asked me if I would like to go and stay with my Dad for the night, I liked my Dad so was happy to go with him.
It's very strange how after so many years certain memories seem clear as the day they happened, isnt it!! I then remember my Dad taking me back to my Nana's house, which was where he lived then. All my family was there to greet me and I had a massive fuss made over me, I was given presents, sweets, toys, you name it!!! As a six year old child this was great fun!!!
I then started to visit my real father every weekend and i continued to do this until i reached the age of 16. By this age I was grown up and could then decide when I wanted to stay with my Dad as I was starting to live my own life. I must say that my visits did decrease but I did try to get to his house at least once a month, when I didn't visit, I always kept in contact by phone.
All the time I was visiting my real father I still lived at home with my step father, so I always looked upon them both as my Father. It was quite hard as I never wanted to let one knew that I loved them more than the other but in reality I would never had been able to choose between them. My real father will always be my real Father and someone who I know will always be there whenever I need him. But my step Father is someone that has constantly been at my side to support, love and encourage me, he was there at my sports days cheering me on and at my nativity plays watching from the crowd. I got married in 2007 and the thought of choosing which father would give me away tore at my heart for months, it was then that I decided they would both have to give me away otherwise I simply wouldn't get married!!! We got married in Cyprus and they both walked me down the aisle, so it was a perfect day.
I have been very fortunate that my parents split when I was too young to remember, so I don't remember any bad feeling or animosity between them. Plus they didn't go through a massive phase of hating each other; they split quite amicably so there was no huge custody battle over me.
The other fact is that my Father and my step father know each other and do get on quite well, so whenever there are occasions where they will both be there I know that there is not going to be any bad feeling towards them.
Throughout my life I have never felt bad about my parents divorce, this may sound strange but I have only ever been fortunate through it all. I have grown up with two fathers who love, protect and adore me, then my Father re-married so I also have a Mother and a Step Mother that also both love me very much. Therefore rather than losing a parent I have gained an extra two!!
Having two Mums and two Dads is something that I have always looked upon as being 'normal' and has always been part of my life ever since being a small child. I am glad that my parents decided to divorce rather than spending the rest of their lives unhappy, as it has goven them the chance to meet the person that they truly did love.
When my parents decided to seperate when I was only eight years old it was not the happiest time of my life as at times I wondered just whether I was not responsible in some way or other, it was particularly hard on my father as he was left to raise two children pretty much on his own as my mother was the one who left the family home to start a new life with another bloke and somehow we children (I have an older brother) did not fit into her new life.
I must say I have never really forgiven my mum for her selfish act and have now cut her out of my life completely, she did attempt to make contact a few years ago but by then it was too late and I never really believed that she was truly sorry for what she did, fortunately after a couple of years my father had met and married a truly great woman and to be honest she has been the best mother that I could have ever asked for, in fact I did get a certain amount of pleasure when I did meet my biological mother to refer to my step mother as Mum while I used my biological mothers first name, personally being a mother is not something you can expect unconditionally if you abandon your child and expect to just return as if nothing ever happened without even so much as an apology.
My brother feels the same way and he was not even bothered to let his own children know that they have another "granny" out there somewhere, the one they have already on our side of teh family is the ideal role model.
Dad did a brilliant job bringing us up and managed to keep his true feelings about his ex-wife to himself, never running her down in front of us and never creating barriers if she had wanted to have contact, indeed he tried to encourage it but gave up after a year or so when he saw that it was not working out.
Divorce can be a messy affair, I'm just grateful that I had a great father who also got lucky second time around with a great wife and mother.
This is my account of divorce both as a child and an adult as my parents divorced and i am now seperated from my husband too.
I was about 5 when my parents divorced, i dont really remember the actual split, i just remember my dad picking me up at weekends and taking me to his new home.
I was very close to my dad and looked forward to his "visits" but used to get very upset when it was time to go home, each time he left i was heartbroken, i even got close to his new partner and missed her when i went home, my mother also met a new man.
Once my mum had a new partner things changed, and in the end as i was getting so upset on each visit my dad allowed my mothers new partner to adopt me, he thought my life would be happier, i was 6 at the time, it was the worst thing he could do, my stepfather was awfull, and i no longer have contact with my mother, we lost touch in my teens, and havnt seen her since
As i grew older i knew i wanted to get back in touch with my dad and it took some years but i got there, i was 24 when i regained contact with him, and so glad i did we are so alike in many ways, and the love i had for him as a child was still there, i dont blame him for how things turned out he was trying to do the best for me.
Whilst in contact with my dad i introduced him to my fiance who i met when i was 22, they got on really well.
My wedding day arrived, my dad didnt give me away though as i hadnt been back in touch that long and had already asked a close friend to do it, it took me such a long time to say yes to marriage and would not have children until i was, so in the end i loved and trusted my partner enough that i said yes.
We married when i was 26 and i was happy with my decision to get married, we then bought a house and then went on to have a child, it was the happiest period of my life.
Then it all started going wrong, the arguments started and we seperated shortly after for various reasons, my worst nightmare had come true, it was my parents all over again, it was awfull.
In the end my friends helped me get through it, and i picked myself up, and brought my child up the best to my ability we are so very close and im a lot stronger a person for it, and me and my ex are friends now for the sake of our child, you have to make the best of a difficult situation
I thought I'd write about my experiences of my parents separating when I was a child. They still aren't divorced - but this isn't because they are going to get back together, it's because both of them are far too lazy to be bothered sorting out the paperwork.
Unlike many people's experiences, I didn't see the separation coming. There was no awkward yelling matches or uncomfortable rows. At 11, my dad said he needed to talk to the family, but the dog went beserk (for no particular reason), so he said he'd talk to me separately and I minded the dog in the other room. I could hear my mum crying and he came through and explained to me that he was going to leave for a "trial separation". I calmed the dog down and went through to see and help comfort my mum and sister. He came back when I was 14, but then left again when I was 16.
Practically, it impacted financially on my family a fair bit. I remember cutting down on shopping and my mum worrying about finances as her work was restricted since my sister was ill. Emotionally, it initially devastated my mum, but once she had settled with it she has emerged a lot more confident person.
I remember being quite philosophical about it. To me, my dad had chosen to leave my mum, not my sister and myself. I didn't cry. After all, my mum was dropping us at his house most mornings to go to school and I was actually seeing more of him than I had before he'd left. However, I hadn't been that as close to him as my sister had and she was really upset. I think it still affects her and her relationship with him now. She did see it as him walking out on her and not caring about her as much.
It did make me grow up faster though. My mum needed more support and I found myself helping more around the house, with the shopping and also looking after my sister when she was ill. Maybe this provided me with a distraction from what was happening that meant that I didn't feel as emotionally affected by it? I also didn't go to university full time as I had planned. I felt that I needed to help financially and worked alongside studying part time.
I think overall, divorce and parental separation is probably negative for most children, but there are a few positives to be found in it and it is definitely better in the long term than living in a household where one of the family don't want to be there.
Divorce is a tricky issue to cover, and i feel im as qualified as any for talking about it, recently having experienced my parents breaking up after 20 years. I would count my self a relavently mature person and so i find it easy to talk about it as i have not had a bad experience with my parents break up.
I found that the breaking up of my parents was not a hugely traumatic experience as it was all done very amicably, i have though noticed certain positves which i can draw from my experience.
Firstly the quality of the time which i have with my dad has greatly improved as the time spent together is more important, as the time we have together is limited. Secondly the health and happiness of both my parents have imporved, with both parents having quitted smoking. AS well as this there is less general tension in our house, and my dad had no problems findong accomadation. I can also say that from my experience i can put a higher value on marriageand know that it is not something to be rushed into.
However i have noticed the negative effects on my younger brother, who took the news worse, and now holds some resentment towards my mother, who intitiated the break up, but now can apprieciate why it happened and has accepted it.
This, as i said is only my experince and i acknowledge that for others the issue is sensitive and harsh. I just wanted to show that divorce is not always bad for everyone.
hi everyone, really sorry to hear of your experiences through your life concerning divorce. fortunately my parents are still together and appear quite happy. i am a university student currently doing a module on the family and have decided to base my coursework for my final year on divorce and how it affects childrens. obviously i am finding alot of disadvantages on divorce but i do want to focus on the advantages for children of divorce but finding difficult in finding many. i would be really grateful if any of you could help me out with how you felt advantaged as a child when your parents were divorced.thank you, Jane
All too often nowadays younger and older children alike are used as some sort of revenge tool by their parents going through a divorce.
My brother is currently going through a divorce where the kids are being used in this way. It's so unbelievably heartbreaking to witness something happening like this to people you love, especially when you can't really do anything for them other than be there for them.
Two years ago his now ex-wife walked out on my brother for someone else. Only the year before they had bought an expensive B&B in Inverness, business was great and they were the happiest I'd ever seen them. Naturally we were all devastated when this happened, as there had been no signs of any unhappiness or trouble at all. Obviously my brother was a wreck but once over the initial shock got on with his life as you do. Although things were very strained he saw his 2 sons, aged 5 and 9, every second weekend and they would often stay with us, and my parents, in the holidays.
My brother is bi-polar and has been since his teens. He manages it well, taking his medication and it has never been something he has hidden or had any trouble with until a couple of months ago when his ex-wife decided she did not want him to see the boys anymore because she was scared he would hurt them. My brother lives for his kids and would never harm them in any way. His ex-wife now tells the boys their dad doesn't want to see them anymore; she has changed all her phone numbers and won't open the door to my brother now. He can't even get a chance to talk to them. All he wants is to be part of their lives, to know how they are getting on at school, get invited to parents nights, see them on their birthdays, Christmas etc., take them out for the day. He is their father after all, who has never once done anything to harm them or their mother.
I am a very emotional person and also a great believer that there is always a way to sort out problems, but at the same time I am not naïve and do know that this is not always the case. Sometimes people just cannot sort out their differences, but do they really have to use the children in their arguments? Surely what's best for the children involved is to be reassured that BOTH their parents love them equally and it's not their fault at all that this has happened. In the case of my ex-sister-in-law her thinking is that she wants the best for her sons and, in her eyes, that is a happy home life with her and her new man, which in an ideal world is what we all want, TO BE HAPPY. But should children involved in divorce be made to sacrifice the love of one of their parents just so the other one can be happy. Ok, if abuse of some sort was a problem then there could possibly be a stronger case for a parent not being allowed contact with their child. Should a parent really be denied access to his/her children just because the ex-partner doesn't want them to be part of their lives anymore? What must this do to those poor children emotionally?
Although very much involved, I have no say in my brother's case only being an auntie, and therefore do see myself as an outsider looking in and just wish they could only take a step back and see what this is doing to their children. Surely the best scenario in these cases where the parents just can't seem to agree on anything is for them to act like real grown-ups, put their own squabbling and bickering aside and let the children enjoy time with both parents, this IS the right of these poor children after all isn't it? Obviously once the children are old enough then they can decide for themselves what they want to do.
In the case of my brother, court proceeding have commenced and he is to be allowed to see the boys on Boxing Day, but only if I collect them from their grandparent's and supervise the visit. I feel awful about this situation and hate they way in which I am now being used too, but I will do it for the boys. The ex-wife was also going to allow my brother to see the boys on 15th December for 2 hours and 15th January for 2 hours but again only if I would supervise the visits. I live 2 ½ hours away, work and have 2 children of my own, I can't just drop everything like that, especially not at this time of year, so she's not allowing these visits. I feel terrible now!
The next court case is in January when hopefully my brother will have a report from his GP stating that he is fit to see his children. I just hope my brother doesn't give up and keeps fighting, after all, he does deserve to see his children and they have a right to see him.
Life is far too short for uncalled for quarrelling and our children are only young for such a very short time, no one has the right to take these magical years away from a loving, caring parent, do they?
Yours emotionally Lel1969 xx