What’s A Mom To Say?

Lately a lot of stuff has been coming up with my kids about their dad. We’ve had some heart to heart talks that made me sad for them. Their dad left around 6 years ago and while he’s occasionally in touch with them, it’s been hard because they remember the dad that was different than the stranger that sees them maybe 3 times a year. And not because he lives that faraway (he moved 4 hours away), but because he often ignores texts or calls and then there’s a push/pull between the kids and him because he’ll go silent for awhile and not answer them so they don’t feel the need to answer him when he finally comes around. And, it’s not as if he’s working because he’s lost his job (again) and he’s not depressed either. He just “doesn’t want to do this anymore” which I’m guessing included being a part of their lives.

So, the kids are having a hard time because their dad mentioned he might be moving across country which obviously would mean that he wouldn’t be 4 hours away by car anymore. At firs they were really upset, but as we talked about it, they (I didn’t help) realized that it’s not as if they see him anyway so what difference would it make?

Then the conversation moved towards how much they’ve missed the dad they remember him being when they were younger and how much they’ve missed out on learning about ‘boy stuff’ from their dad because he left when they were 14-16. While I tried to teach them some ‘boy stuff’ like how to make a Windsor knot (tie), how to shave without cutting their faces, I’ve taken them to lease cars (how to make a deal) and use some tools that I have here, there are other things that I don’t know. And I’m not a guy so it makes it weird.

They have a good male therapist to talk with so that helps, but no real male role model (or at least that’s what they tell me). They want me to find a man so that they can have a good guy to hang around with as well, but that’s not happened yet, especially not during the virus…I’m not dating yet.

But there’s not much I can say except I am sorry that their dad isn’t there for them more often and that as much as I think I’m being Mom and Dad to them, I fall short in the Dad area more often than not. And yes, YouTube is good for learning some things, but it’s just not the same. And I get it.

But really, what’s a mom to say?

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17 Responses to What’s A Mom To Say?

  1. Dwight Hyde says:

    I know you can’t say it and it’s definitely not kind for me to say it, but…what a frickin piece of sh**! I obviously don’t know him, but at the very least to not even stay in contact especially at that age of the boys. Breaks my heart!! There’s nothing you can say other then you love them and show them how love is supposed to look and work. It’s a very hard truth they are learning about their dad at a young age. You have created an excellent base for them and I know they will be way bigger men then him. Much love to you all❤️🤗

    Liked by 1 person

    • bone&silver says:

      Well said Dwight- I agree wholeheartedly- it’s their father’s huge loss not knowing them, but so unfair so much of the burden falls to their Mum. What an arsehole.

      Liked by 1 person

      • janieleeds says:

        Thank you both for your support Dwight and G! I do feel badly for their Dad for not having a relationship with our sons because they all need each other, but he chose to be this way even though I tried to make excuses towards his absence. I learned that their relationship is theirs and has nothing to do with me nor mine. I don’t say bad things about their dad to my kids. That’s not my style.

        Liked by 1 person

      • bone&silver says:

        I agree it’s not good form to badmouth the other parent in a divorce. I never did that either. However, I do think it’s essential to acknowledge and affirm negative experiences that your children may express- their losses and disappointments need to be validated- and I sense that you would be good at that, even if it’s not comfortable for you. You’re doing a great job of a hard task J xx

        Like

    • janieleeds says:

      Thank you Dwight…truly. And from a man’s point of view it helps. I don’t know what happened to him for him to just be so distant. with them It breaks my heart too Dwight. ❤️🤗

      Liked by 1 person

  2. bone&silver says:

    Janie, here in Oz we have The Uncle Project, which tries to align fatherless boys with upstanding community men, to go camping/car fixing/footy games and so on- is there anything like that around you? Could you start one? What about any family cousins or uncles- could you reach out for more contact? It’s so SHIT that your ex has dumped his kids- that says a lot about the caliber of his character to me- I’m sad for your kids a bit, but they’re also better off without such poor care and role modeling 😢
    Sending a hug: I KNOW you’re doing an awesome job 🙏🏼❤️ G

    Liked by 1 person

    • janieleeds says:

      Thanks G! I appreciate you…xo. They could reach out to their Uncles who are good men too. I think it’s just the ‘being left’ that they’re concentrating on…it will get better I’m sure. I thought perhaps others may have had the same situation and we could all talk about it too. Hope all is well with you!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. petespringerauthor says:

    I just feel bad for the kids. Quite naturally, it has to be confusing for them as to why their dad doesn’t want to be a more significant part of their life. I hope they’ll take those memories and become the kind of parents their dad wasn’t when they have kids.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. LA says:

    Just be there for them. That’s all you can do

    Like

  5. TJ Fox says:

    While it is always important to have role models for different things, maybe the best you can do here isn’t to be a “dad” kind of role model with the “boy things” and just be a “decent human” and “functioning adult” role model for them. Yes, there are certain things that boys tend to expect to learn from their fathers, but those can be learned elsewhere. The really important lessons are the ones you are teaching them through words and actions. You are showing them how to be a good parent even when things are tough and you have to do it alone. You are showing them that change may be hard, but it is something you can still get through. Sometimes you don’t even really need to say anything because what you do is so much more important.

    Like

    • janieleeds says:

      TJ, thank you!! That’s what I am trying to do – be authentically me – and to continue to help, support and guide them and/or find them someone to help them as well. It is something that I thought many others may be struggling with during hard times of divorce. I want to role model good human, kind heart, strong loving bonds, patience and strength to get through the hard times. I appreciate your kindness.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Rainey says:

    I wouldn’t stress too much over it. Your heart is in the right place and your sons will see that. If they don’t have a full time male role model now, they will instinctively seek them out as they get older. Mentors will pop up in the most unexpected places.

    Like

  7. Ainsobriety says:

    My kids dad is 8 hours away. Son has minimal contact. Very minimal…one visit in the last year, arranged by me.
    Daughter has zero contact.
    Dad would like to text with them, but they have chosen to not communicate with him.

    He has been gone around 18 months, and has a baby.

    Both kids realize he is not really capable of an adult relationship…that he is a coward and that we are better off without him. They openly say they see me as more than mom and they cherish our open relationship.

    I feel capable of teaching the kids pretty much everything important. I don’t really believe in gender roles. I work in a non traditional field as an engineer in the oil industry. For years we had a live in caregiver who provided child care and did all the housework, etc. My ex never did any man jobs anyway, lol. How did I not see he was useless in 25 years?

    I hire people when needed and I google and YouTube. I hope this is teaching my kids self sufficient and ingenuity, plus the value of a good income to hire people when necessary.

    My son asked me about “personal grooming” one day. Lol so we bought him a razor for trimming whatever it was he wanted to trim. Sometimes I wonder how I don’t die laughing. I have zero idea about manscaping!

    I don’t think there will ever be another man in my life. And Cooper is 17, so he probably has most of the info he needs.

    Kids learn from many places. And openness allows us to figure things out together.

    We are the important figure.

    Anne

    Like

    • janieleeds says:

      Anne, thank you for sharing! I think you are right and I am very proud of you! Congrats! you’re a great Mom, role model and inspiration to your kids (and to us too)! Keep up the great work. Stay open and all will find its way to you! Big hugs to you Anne! xoxo

      Like

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