Do You Think He Wanted To Marry?

Car rides were (and still are) my go to opportunity when my kids were younger to just talk about anything and I took advantage of those times when I was carting them to and from school stuff to just catch up on what they were thinking. There’s something about the quiet in a car that has them opening up.

I don’t get that chance much anymore since they have their licenses. But the other night we decided to get take out so my younger one came with me. Driving along in the dark, he asked me about his dad and our relationship.

“Do you think he wanted to marry and have kids?”

I was thunderstruck for a few seconds, pretending to be intent on the traffic (which I was) and the rain storm that had begun. I was also choosing my words carefully as I know this one has been trying to figure his dad out since he left years ago and only occasionally has any communication with the kids.

“Yes, he did. Why are you asking?”

“Well because it seems to me he doesn’t really want to be a dad anymore. He didn’t want to be married anymore either. Do you think he just did it because it’s expected?”


“Yeah, you know. Expected at a certain age to marry, to have kids. His parents. Society…expected that. It was easy because you were dating for years so he did what was expected of him.”


“And then he didn’t want to do what’s expected anymore. He didn’t want to be a husband, a father, so he ran away.”

I took a deep breath. This is a weighty subject and I’m unsure where he’s taking it.

“I can’t speak for him. I don’t know. But I do know that he asked me to marry him and yes, he wanted children. You and your brother were planned, wanted and we were very happy to have you. You remember how your dad would always play with you, don’t you?”

“Yes, but we’re nothing to him now really.”

We were stopped in the take out line by then. I turned to look at my son.

“He loves you. I only know my experience which wasn’t easy, but I’m here to be with you through yours. Your dad loves you. I don’t know what happened that changed him so much. He doesn’t talk about it. Perhaps even he doesn’t know for sure. And I’m sorry.” My voice trailed into the darkness. Platitudes don’t work with the kid whose constant question as a toddler was “Why?”

“I know. And we have you. Single parent. And him, on again, off again. Here and then he disappears. But you’re always here Mom. We count on you.”

“I count on you too. We’re a team!” I tried to enthusiastically smile in the darkness. “Sometimes we don’t know the answer to ‘why?’ so we just have to find peace without it.”

“I know. And I know it’s not us. It’s him.”

I peeked over at him and he was quietly contemplating as well as staring out into space. He noticed me looking at him and turned to face me.

“Yes, it’s him. Not you, nor your brother. Perhaps he’ll come around one day. Perhaps not. I don’t know. But I’m here for you always. Your brother and I are here for you.”

“We’re a family. I feel like we’re closer since he left.”

“I feel that way too. I’m grateful we have each other,” and I reached over to grab my son’s hand and squeeze. Three times as I’ve always taught them.

One for each word: I Love You.

This entry was posted in divorce, finding happiness at 50, love and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

13 Responses to Do You Think He Wanted To Marry?

  1. The V Pub says:

    Out of the mouth of babes. What a beautiful child you have.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. LA says:

    Thank you for sharing this

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Ainsobriety says:

    This made me cry. It is beautiful and very telling of you relationship with your children. He obviously trusts you, believes you and knows you are on his side. You are a good mom.

    I have had similar conversations. I tell stories about Craig and I sometimes, and last night my son made a face and we both laughed at how much he looks like his dad when he does it.

    At the same time, it hurts. It hurts to know that my (and yours)children even question that one of their parents loves them or wants them. That is unbearably unacceptable, and completely true. It is the one deepest reason I harbour hate for Craig. Having my kids hurt, who are lovely, fun, great people, is intolerable.

    Yes, they also know he is a selfish and weak person. Yes, they know he loved them as children. But he is gone…and he has another child, which adds some more bullshit to the already deep pile.

    Like all unfair things in life, we find acceptance that they are our reality, and we go from there.

    Thank you for sharing that.


    Liked by 1 person

    • janieleeds says:

      Thanks for sharing Anne. We are blessed that we are able to continue to have these types of conversations with our kids. You are a good Mom too!!

      “Like all unfair things in life, we find acceptance that they are our reality, and we go from there,” is so true. But it’s hard to watch our kids go through this so being the best Moms we can be counts even more!

      I’m so sorry for your kids, but I am grateful they have you!! And that we have connected through blogging!

      I think communication is key especially when we have these types of conversations. We do our best and keep going…

      Hugs to you!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. scr4pl80 says:

    What a great conversation.


  5. petespringerauthor says:

    It’s pretty great that you can have this conversation with your son. I stopped dead in my tracks with his line, “Yes, but we’re nothing to him now really.” Heartbreaking!

    Liked by 1 person

    • janieleeds says:

      I know. It was heartbreaking to hear and while it feels true to my son, I just can’t believe that the ex is really that way deep down inside. But unfortunately, he’s not showing any differently so who knows…thanks Pete for reading…and yes, I feel blessed that we can talk so honestly even when it’s hard to hear what my sons say to me at times.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. bone&silver says:

    Amazing connection! How wonderful. Focus on that & nurture that; donโ€™t give any more energy than you have to in the loser Dadโ€™s direction ๐Ÿ™๐Ÿผโค๏ธ


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