I’ve said it before; perhaps the most extraordinaire blessing of my divorce was its timing; though in the early days it didn’t feel so miraculous. The explosion of a nuclear family usually occurs farther down the marriage trail, when kids want nothing more than a ride to the mall and their parents to disappear on command.
I’m beside myself with anger, frustration and fear. My ex was an abusive man – emotionally, verbally, physically, and financially ruined both our one son and myself. The courts deemed him unfit to see his child without supervision. Eventually, he gave it up, never paid a nickel in support and signed as not wanting visitation with our son. This was 6 years ago, my son is now 16, and his father found him on Facebook, contacted him, and 6 weeks later my son is seeing him, working part time with him, happy as ever. He says ‘the past is the past’ and I should be happy for him, that he has his dad is back. My boy was mentally and physically hurt by him and now he’s superdad? I have medical files that I never want my boy to see because it would scar him knowing what his father did to me. But a small part of me feels that even if he knew what his father really is, it still wouldn’t make a difference. I fear for my boy’s welfare and future and I’m more fearful that my anger and feelings of betrayal by my son will drive him away. I’ve been the parent all these years and now I’m the selfish one who won’t understand a boy’s need to be with his biological father. He has a wonderful ’stepdad’ who adores my boy and vice versa but he’s not enough. I see my son going down the wrong road already. It’s like watching your child running towards the edge of a cliff, holding scissors while texting. Why do some need the attention and affirmation that they are wanted even from someone so worthless? I’m overwhelmed with pain and sadness at watching my son turn into his father. I want to throw up all the time. Other than chaining my son to his bed, any advice you could offer would be appreciated. – Desperate mom
There are several characteristics that distinguish my relationship with the Queen from every other – including my former marriage. The most significant of these is an awareness to the role I play in it.
I divorced about 2 years ago and have been dating a woman from about a year ago. She does not like my child and hates when I spend time with him and refuses to share a time and activities together, so I lead mostly a harshly split way of life, divided between my girlfriend and my kid. It is becoming unbearable, as I want to marry and have children with my current girlfriend, but her refusal to bring my kid into OUR lives is breaking my life apart, almost literally. What is your advice? I love her and care for her, but it is increasingly difficult to manage such a situation. Can I keep both? Should I let her go? I am confused, sad and torn apart. — Misery in Mexico City
Being a single parent has roughly the appeal of syphilis. A lifetime of bitterness, anger, and guilt isn’t a top contender when the genie asks for three wishes; and little boys and girls don’t dream of futures with child support, separation agreements, and visitation rights.
My Aunt Lucille was the most sophisticated woman in our family. She was my grandmother’s youngest sister and her entire life seemed one big cosmopolitan adventure. The many years she spent in Atlanta and unencumbered by children only added to an already formidable metropolitan mystique.