I’m currently sat on the train with Dexter, about to drop him off to his Dads for a five day ‘holiday.’  It’ll be a quick drive by, wherein I literally drop him off to my ex at Stratford and I will carry on my journey towards London.

It’s heartbreaking.  I know it’s early days, and I don’t know how other single parents cope, but I am really struggling.

Dexter’s playing on my phone and on the surface, seems quite nonchalant … constantly asking for food and playing Angry Birds – all quite normal.  But I know he feels the pain too.  He feels torn between leaving me and wanting to see his Dad – and no doubt, it’s the same when he’s not with me.  He feels guilty for wanting to be with the other parent, even though both of us assure him that it’s ok, that he doesn’t need to feel like that.

He’s only eight years old.

It’s just a crappy situation all round.  His Dad lives in London – I live in Kent.

It’s a new situation for all of us and we are going to have to learn to deal with it.

I try to make Dexter’s time away from me sound exciting to him.  I tell him about all the things his Dad will do with him, the family he’ll see, the places he’ll go, the fact that he can go and see Avengers Assemble for the fifth time.  I’ll keep myself busy and I’m beginning to get a social life back on track but this isn’t what I signed up for.  I was meant to be part of a family.

Dexter and I are now in floods of tears, mine hidden from him and the world – and it’ll only be fleeting and to look at me you’d never know.

I smile, I have fun.  Hell, I’m the life and soul right?

Jesus … it hurts.

 

PS:  Normal service will be resumed by the time you read this!

 

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Published by Kate Sutton

Writer, Mother, Dater.

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31 Comments

  1. I klnow that hurt. The one that burns, the one that you can feel in every cell. I can’t, yet, put on the smiley face in public, but I smile when I’m with my children because they make me smile. When I’m not however I’m always a thought away from breaking down.
    I’m sure, as parents, you’ll do the best for your son. It’s instinctive. It’s obviously a tough situation and I wish you all the best of luck.
    A great post.
    @SAHDandproud recently posted..Going out for the day? Let’s pack the house.My Profile

    1. Thanks for commenting, really means a lot, especially as I know you’re going through something similar. Hit me hard today – not sure why today. And on a train too. Awful. Onwards and upwards x

  2. It will get easier. And those that know you well enough know how you’re feeling.

    Kids are tough, he will be fine, because he’s got you as a role model.

    Love you ginge x

  3. sorry to burst the bubble, but from a kids perspective the hurt lasts for years. As a kid who went through that some 30 years ago I can promise you that. As a volunteer who works with kids from separated families of all descriptions I see it a lot, and they do suffer. All you can do is persevere, make sure that both parents listen to what the child wants. If the child doesn’t want to go on a set w/e because there is something they would rather do, work round it. He has will have a life too. He won’t want to be in the middle of any arguments, heated discussions etc. No matter how often you tell him its not his fault he will at times suspect that. Keep an eye out for him trying to keep everyone happy at his own expense.
    Having said that, stay strong, big hugs, and chin up!

    1. Hi, i’m not sure what bubble you’re referring to. I’ve been through all of this with my eldest who is now nearly 18 so unfortunately I know what’s ahead. I appreciate it’s not the same as having my own parents split but I’m at least more equipped than many to deal with it. Doesn’t stop it hurting though, whatever my personal circumstances are. I hope we get to the point wherein my son feels happy spending time with each of us without feeling bad. Thanks for your comment, really appreciate it.

      1. I was thinking about the comments above mine really, they all seemed so ‘it will be alright’ and I know how hard it is from a kids perspective. You are right, you are more equipped than most to deal with it, and I wasn’t meaning to sound grouchy. Good luck. I am sure it will work out. I just wanted to make the point to others (not you necessarily) that the kids have a point of view as well.

        1. Hey – bless you coming back! I wasn’t offended or anything … and yes everyone’s trying to be supportive to me … because it’s my blog – but I think it goes without saying that it’s the kids that suffer the most. Incidentally, I mentioned to my eldest today about your comment (as well as others) and he said, but look at me Mum – I turned out alright. It’s never easy – for anyone involved, and i really appreciate your point of view.

  4. Hugs to you x Life sometimes is not what you planned but somehow we all get through it. Kids adjust much easier than us adults, and to me Dexter looks like one of those kids!!! Take it easy and yes it is always much better out than in for sure. x
    Ali recently posted..Meal Planning MondayMy Profile

  5. I remember this like it was yesterday and I was the 9 yo. It was so hard to begin with but it got easier. I have no idea if my parents ever got used to it, but I promise that Dexter will and soon it will be normal.

    1. I’d never be horrid about his Dad – that would be unfair on Dexter. And thanks … I’m trying to be all things to everyone at the mo, just had an off day I think! x

  6. My son loves having double birthdays and a double christmas. His Dad left when I was pregnant so it has always been the same for him. He sees his Dad when ever he wants to and has a phone so they can keep in touch. I’m sure your little man will be fine but just like you and his Dad it will be tough for a while. I was always open and honest with my son and I’m sure that helped him. Take care lovely and it WILL get easier xxx

  7. I took three hurting kids on when they were little and it takes time but they do adapt. I didn’t realise you were going through this, I’m sorry to hear it and sometimes the happy mask has to slip or we’d all go nutso trying to keep the cracks in the warpaint from showing.

    You’re doing a great job. I know nothing we say will help right now.

    Take care
    Lesley
    x
    Scottish Mum recently posted..Slow Cooked Beef Stew with New PotatoesMy Profile

    1. Lesley – just saying something is the ‘right’ thing for me right now. I’m trying to learn not to be so damned private about everything – it’s not good for me, hence today’s post. I still find it incredibly difficult to share the tough stuff. Thanks for commenting – means a lot x

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