I Guess That’s Why They Call It The Blues

I had a blue Christmas. I hope yours was better. I understand that kids have a tough time navigating holidays with divorced parents. What amazes me is that their narcissist father still pulls the strings even though they resent him for doing it. He told them to get presents for his family (8 people) on the day before Christmas Eve and even though they complained, they did it. They did tell him they didn’t have money for it and he told them he’d reimburse them it they put it on their cards which they did. But who knows if that will happen anyway. It’s not my problem.

But, I watched how they jumped through hoops to do as he demanded and yet, balk when I ask/suggest. And don’t get me started on the fact that again, this Christmas, there was nothing under the tree for me either, even though I offered to give them money to get me something. They couldn’t be bothered because they were too busy rushing around for their narcissist dad and his family.

It hurt. It still hurts and I told them yesterday how I felt. I didn’t need a grand gesture, but yes, I wanted a card, even if it were handwritten on a piece of computer paper, to say, ‘hey Mom, we thought of you on Christmas.’ But nope. Nothing. And I can’t help feeling hurt, angry, mad, resentful and a whole host of other emotions that are depressing.

I told each of them separately because I have been feeling very tired and not been myself. So when they asked what was going on, I told them in a nice way how I was feeling hurt. I mentioned how I was glad they went out to get presents for their dad’s family’s, but how I felt unappreciated when I made their Christmas nice and they couldn’t be bothered to think of me. It went nicer than that when I told them, but their reactions were polar opposites.

The younger one was really sorry and asked to spend tomorrow with me doing whatever I wanted. He understood and felt my sadness. But the older one who is much like his dad? He reared up in anger and told me they couldn’t have gotten me a present because I don’t have a ‘hobby’ so he didn’t know what to get me. I explained how I didn’t need a grand gesture, but a simple card to open would have been appreciated. Something, for God’s sakes, to say I see you Mom. I acknowledge your presence and you’re thought of on Christmas.

I think it hurts more deeply because they jumped to their dad’s demands and at 23 and 21, they know it’s Christmas and people give gifts and they bought 8 people gifts but not the Mom who does everything for them. I don’t want to have it change me, but it opened my eyes wide to what I will put up with in my own home and what I won’t. And I won’t be putting up with this because it feels disrespectful, obnoxious and downright hurtful.

Am I wrong?

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15 Responses to I Guess That’s Why They Call It The Blues

  1. bone&silver says:

    F*ck that! I’m glad you are feeling all those feelings, and have expressed them appropriately to the kids- they can easily make a card for goodness sake! My son always spends Xmas with his Dad and family, down in Sydney, so we never have this issue, but I totally get where you’re coming from Janie. Their Dad is continuing to act like the selfish prick we already know he is, and you need to keep stepping up to asking to be treated well- the kids have to learn- keep saying it- keep expecting it in your home, and making it clear. Don’t forget, your kids have seen many more years of you accepting poor treatment, so you are still working to ‘tip the seesaw’ in a positive direction: keep going. Don’t let the oldest get away with it. Don’t let the anger deflect you, or he will learn to be angry and get let off the hook right? Wrong! Sending a hug from Australia ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    • janieleeds says:

      G, well said and point taken with love. I fully agree with you and plan on standing my ground in order to teach them what is acceptable and what is not. I hadn’t thought of it but you’re right about them witnessing their dad’s behavior towards me for a long time and tipping the seesaw is what I need to do for me, for them and ohh…you’ve got my engines revving to empower myself. Thank you my friend! Hugs back to you and sending my gratitude for your insightfulness!!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Beth W. says:

    Oh Janie, I am SO sorry that happened to you. You are definitely not wrong to tell the kids how hurtful that behavior is. You are TOTALLY justified in being very upset by that. And you said “again”….did they fail to get you a gift last year also? Multiple years? 😦 That is awful and you deserve so much better. My sons can sometimes be thoughtless, especially on Mother’s Day. What I have started to do is to tell them something they can do for me…..stain the deck, put fresh dirt in the garden, etc. It isn’t ideal having to basically ask for them to acknowledge me, but at least they know that they are expected to do something. At least your youngest is empathetic and understands how much that hurt you. The older one is completely out of line getting angry with you….you need a hobby? I mean, hobbies are good, but certainly not necessary for gift giving. Get a small poinsettia, a scarf, an ornament, literally anything! He should be shamed for having absolutely no imagination and no consideration of all that you do for him. I say stand your ground with him. The next time he needs something from you, you should take your sweet time deciding if you feel up to doing it. 😦
    Sending huge hugs and wishes for a brighter and better year to come ❤

    Like

    • janieleeds says:

      What great gift ideas you have Beth! Yes, I agree that hobby means nothing especially when their dad supposedly doesn’t have any either, but he got gifts.
      I like your idea of telling them something (stain the deck etc) for Mother’s Day. I guess it’s a process as they learn how to appreciate us, but you’re right. I have been more hands off now that I was ‘told’ and I can see the older one spinning in his head because you can’t take back what’s been said. And to answer your question, last year it was the same thing, no present, even though I offered to give them money to get me a little something.
      Thank you for the huge hugs. I’m sending you huge hugs too and hope you had a lovely Christmas with your family and the girls and your new man! ❤️

      Like

  3. E.A. Wickham says:

    I’m glad you told your kids how you felt. I’m also thankful your youngest had empathy and wanted to make you feel better.

    Like

  4. LA says:

    You have every right to feel hurt. Unfortunately sometimes we try harder trying to win love/approval from the person we don’t think lives us enough, and take for granted the person who lives us unconditionally. Sending love

    Like

  5. scr4pl80 says:

    Wow. Glad the youngest understood. It’s good that you told them both how you felt and that you did it separately. You don’t need a hobby. Flowers would have done the trick. Even, like you said, a card or note. Perhaps your oldest did feel bad and his way of dealing with that is to get angry. Maybe he’ll come to you later and apologize for that. Sending big hugs.

    Like

    • janieleeds says:

      Thanks for the hugs and understanding Janet. Flowers would have been a great idea as well. I think he feels badly, but instead of dealing with it, he got angry which is not good. We’ve been talking a bit more so let’s see how it unfolds. Thank you for the big hugs. I am sending back to you big hugs as well. Hope all is well with you!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Jonathan says:

    Sounds like your eldest needs a reality check. It’s amazing how children are different from each other, isn’t it – ours are so different from each other it’s funny. Huge hugs.

    Like

  7. hbsuefred says:

    Janie-You are not wrong for feeling the way you do or for sharing your feelings with your kids. Seems to me they are taking you for granted because you are the one that’s with them all and every time.

    Like

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