Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Week in Review

Hey everyone! I hope you all had a nice Easter! I got sick on Saturday and have felt kinda crappy the past couple days so I've skipped the blogging in favor of sleep.

Here are some pictures from my week...

We only spilled one cup of egg dye this year!


Oooo pretty


All Brooklyn's eggs looked like rocks for some reason. How does one even manage to make gray Easter eggs???


Baseball, baseball, and more baseball

hockey, hockey, and more hockey

I took Lexi out of school Thursday morning to meet Miranda Cosgrove (more on that to come). She was insanely excited! A million thanks go to my friends, Ginny, Ellen and Doreen for helping me out sooo much! I couldn't have gotten Lexi downtown without all of you guys and your willingness to help me out big time! Thank you!

I went to court yesterday for a pre-trial conference concerning my divorce. It went very much in my favor with the judge saying that the kids and I could stay in the house. It looks like the divorce will be final on May 4th. It's sad because I never imagined my life would turn out like this. I don't think anyone goes into marriage, thinking, Oh well, if it doesn't work out, we'll just get divorced. Actually, some people probably do have that attitude. But most of us think that things will last forever. And once kids are thrown into the mix, we do everything we can to make it work. We try for years. We put up with more than we probably should "for the kids' sake". But sometimes, there comes a point when we realize that staying together "for the kids" is not really the best thing for the kids. In the best cases, both parents put their own feelings aside for the best interest of the children. They cooperate for their sake. They work together to make sure the kids know that none of it is their fault. They bite their tongues and keep their negative thoughts about each other to themselves. They both spend as much time as possible with the kids and do everything in their power to ensure them that they are very much loved and cherished and that will never change.
That's not my case. I don't know if Joe is trying to punish me. I don't know if he's just having a hard time separating his feelings for me from those for the kids. I have no idea what on earth is going through his head. I do know that he loves the kids and used to be a hands-on dad. He used to spend time with them, take them for bike rides, play catch with them, help them with homework. Unfortunately, he's cut himself off from them and hasn't spent time with them for 3 1/2 months. He changed his cell phone number so we can't call him. He told his lawyer that he doesn't want joint custody and doesn't want visitation. My heart breaks for my kids and I work overtime making sure they know that it's not their fault and that their dad loves them. That's all I can do.
I'm not writing this to bash Joe. Like I said, I don't know what his problem is and why he's making the choices he is. I mostly feel sorry for him. I'm not going into all the details of the divorce and things he's said or done. Just letting you know what is going on and why I don't keep up with my blog as much as before. I'm just kinda busy these days.

76 comments:

Marjorie said...

Dawn,
You are a real trooper. I am convinced that Joe is trying to punish YOU. He is being very selfish in his desire to get back at you, and the kids are suffering for it. Hang in there. You and your kids are in my thoughts and prayers.

Kim said...

Hugs to you Dawn. I wish I knew you in person and I would give you a real hug! It sounds like you are doing wonderful with the situation! Joe sounds like he may be having a breakdown of some sort!
Also I feel old because I didn't know who Miranda Cosgrove was!

Anonymous said...

{{hugs}} best wishes to you and the kids. It's a long road, but you can make it.

Shawna S said...

Hang in there Dawn. You are doing a great job. Keep it up!!! Lots of love. Shawna

Kim said...

"He told his lawyer that he doesn't want joint custody and doesn't want visitation."

That statement is heart-breaking. Maybe he doesn't feel like he would be a positive influence on them right now and is staying away because of that. Who knows what's going thru his mind. Just stay strong for the kids!

haloless17 said...

So sad to hear that...but I'm glad to hear everything went in your favour! I'm rooting for you, and I must say I'm very impressed that you're keeping up with all those kids on your own!!

Sophie said...

It broke my heart to see that Joe didn't even ask for visitation. My father did something similar when I was young and it was hard but my mom made it easier making sure we know it wasn't about us. If he asked to visit she would say yes but wouldn't tell us until he arrived in case he was a no-show, she didn't want to get our hopes up. Keep doing what you're doing, My prayers are with you!

Bri'sMom said...

Awww sweetie. I can't imagine what is going through Joe's head, maybe he doesn't know either, but you are right to keep telling the kids that he does love them. My parents finally divorced when I was 10 - after years of trying to stay together "for the kids." They tried to keep things from us, but we knew they had issues and didn't get along anymore. Then my dad just moved out one day and started a new life. He always assumed that we knew he loved us, I can't speak for my older sisters, but I was 10 and everything that I had known and trusted had turned upside down. What he didn't realize when he left, was that he left all of us, not just mom. Children understand far more than we give them credit for, but they still need reassurance from both parents that they are loved and cherished in the event of a divorce or separation. I truly hope that Joe realizes and reaches out to the kids soon.

Raevyn said...

Dawn, speaking as a former child of divorce, part of my heart is sad for your kids, because I know what it’s like to have to deal with the changes that are necessary. Another part of my heart, however, realizes that if Joe is that angry, it is better for the kids (I know it doesn’t seem like it right now) in the long run, not to have to deal with his anger directly. I was almost 13 when my parents divorced, though I’d known for a couple of years that things were much less stressful, less angry, and less chaotic when my father was not at home. When my mother filed, rather than cut himself off from us, he suddenly became super attentive, even going to church on the weekends we weren’t with him “because he missed us” and attending my brother’s football games. Virtually ALL of our time with him, he was engaging in a campaign to turn us against Mom and our maternal grandmother because they were “mean & wicked, and out to get him”. As the only girl, he expected me to do ALL of the cooking and keep his apartment picked up (after him & my brother, in addition to my stuff). As soon as the divorce was final, he got out of the state almost before the ink was dry on the order, and then waged his campaign long distance, via ranting letters and phone calls about how she was “stealing” all of his money (via child support which he sent only partial payments of until the court ordered it garnished from his military retirement pay). Honestly, I would rather NOT have seen or heard from him than to listen to the hatred and anger he spewed constantly. To this day, only 2 of his 3 surviving children (our youngest brother died soon after he left high school) do not speak to him, rather than to listen to his rantings and diatribes against both of his ex-wives and both of his daughters and how my mother & her mother turned both of us “against him” and into “man-hating lesbians” (umm, yeah, that’s why my sister’s been married to the same man for nearly 30 years). Our brother limits his contact, and NONE of his grandchildren want to spend time with him.
The best advice I have is to continue to reinforce that the divorce is NOT their fault, that he does love them but needs some space right now to figure himself out, and not say negative things about Joe to the kids or around them. Hopefully, he will come around and at least have some sort of positive relationship with them. If not, I promise, they will adjust, and in the grand scheme of things, they will always know which parent was ALWAYS there for them, through thick and thin.
Also, if his parents/siblings want a relationship with the kids, and the kids are comfortable with it, I highly encourage it, as it does maintain a link to that part of their family, and, there's no such thing as too much family & love for the kids, especially in what's often a chaotic and kind of frightening time for them.

Jessica said...

Dawn, my prayers go out to you and your family. I can't imagine the pressure you must be under. My specific prayer is that someone can give you a break to take care of yourself. Thank you for being so open, allowing your readers to pray for your journey through this.

Christina said...

(((Hugs))) I'm sorry at what you are going through. Those kids are SO SO lucky to have you!

Laila and Minchie said...

Oh, Dawn, you and your kids are in my thoughts and prayers each day. I really wish there was some way us readers who live close by could help out with all the logistics. (((HUGS)))

Peggy

Dawn said...

I'm so sorry, Dawn. I have been in your shoes. My kids were 1,4 and 6 when their dad left. He used to be very involved also, while still at home. For a couple years after he left, he saw them regularly, but then moved out of state and started a new family. He rarely calls, and sees/saw the kids only a handful of times a year. The disconnect is so sad. The 2 older are on their own now, and the youngest only has a year left. But they've all kinda given up on him. His actions have only hurt the kids. And him. I know he hasn't done this to hurt me. I think it was just "easier" on him.
My prayers are with you.

April M said...

Dawn,
My heart aches for your kids. My parents divorce was very messy and as a kid I could never understand why my Dad didn't want custody of me. Please let them know it's ok to be sad or mad and make sure their school counselors know what is going on in case the kids need someone to talk to other than Mom.

I am praying for you and your family.

Laura said...

It just breaks my heart to hear about Joe's behaviour. I don't know if it's worse for your oldest kids, who can understand what a hurtful choice their father is making, or for the youngest kids, who haven't had many years to spend with their father. I had a friend whose father disappeared from her life when she, the oldest, was in high school. After 15 years of no contact for years she got a call that he was dead.

I hope he comes to his senses soon.

Kristine said...

I'm so sorry Dawn! I hope he comes around, and spends some time with the kids.

We STILL haven't done Easter eggs. They have been boiled & ready since Friday. Or was that Saturday? anyhow, not really looking forward to the mess, but I think we should do it anyway. I'm sure we'll have plenty of brown and grey eggs.

Mamapajama said...

Hearing that Joe doesn't want partial custody or even visitation just breaks my heart. A very similar situation happened with my nephew's Dad abandoning him after a divorce when he was 8 and didn't try to contact him again until he was 17. My nephew will never be the same, he has abandonment and self esteem issues. I know you are doing your best to reassure your kids that it's not their fault and their Dad loves them but the truth is, him not wanting to see them is hurting them more than it will ever hurt you. I won't tell you what to do, but if I were in your shoes, I would make it my priority to get him to visit with his kids. Make it a priority to find out why he doesn't want anything to do with them. Wow, girl, my heart breaks for you. Stay strong!

Cindy in PA said...

My prayers are with you, Joe, and the kids during this time. I'm sorry to hear of all the hurt and pray that God will bring healing soon to you all.

I also have a question about leaving a question for you for Sunday Sound Out. I tried last week sometime to write a brilliant and probably the most witty and inspiring question through your "Get in Touch" button and somehow it got lost in cyberspace. (I can compliment myself multiple times since it didn't go through you see! lol)

So my question now is...is it a problem for others since you said you had a lack of new questions...or is it just techno-challenged me?

Blessings!

Jennifer said...

This just hurts my heart. I'm a daughter of divorced parents and I was estranged from my Dad for a long time. I blamed a lot of things on him and he was very hands off (not as much as Joe) and every time I felt like it was a punch right in the gut. I don't really have any advice for you other than what you are already doing. Just know that kids without a father figure still grow up to be really well adjusted adults. We are just really careful who we pick for husbands.

(Please don't take that as a bash. I don't mean it that way.)

cartside said...

I haven't read your blog in a few months. I'm sad to hear that it all went this far, but you are right, sometimes the best for the kids is to separate. It's a shame that Joe has cut himself off, but at the end of the day, it's his choice and you can only do the best you can, and I'm sure that's just what you're doing. Wishing you strength in these difficult times.

Susan said...

Hey Dawn hang in there. You're so lucky to have your children with you and working through everything together. If Love is Blind and Marriage is an Institution, then Marriage is an Institution for the Blind.

Suburban Correspondent said...

He's grieving, Dawn. And maybe seeing the kids makes it harder on him - like salt in an open wound.

Either that, or there is something psychiatric going on...

Purple Quilter Queen said...

I'm so sorry for what you and your 6-pack are going thru. I hope one day he comes around for the kid's sake. But if not, they will be just fine with you for their mom! Bless you all! Jenn

Purple Quilter Queen said...

Oh and how ubber lucky for Lexi to meet Miranda Cosgrove! We watch icarly ALL THE TIME!! Jenn

Beth said...

I don't want to bash Joe either, since I don't even know him, or you, or any of the details of your relationship. However, I just can't justify in my head how it would even be possible for him to take this attitude. I also have six kids, and once you get up there in the number of children you have it just seems like everyone, parents included, ends up being so close due to the larger numbers (and in my case smaller living quarters). When you first mentioned that he had cut off ties with his children I was honestly shocked. I just don't understand how he could do this. My heart goes out to your children, and also to you. This must be such a difficult time. I am glad at least that you have each other.

Seriously, there are just no words to express my astonishment at his behavior. I will remember your family in my prayers...as well as Joe.

Tricia Freeman said...

I'm so sad for you, Joe and the kids. This whole thing is breaking my heart. I wish that things could be different. I'm so sorry. Feel better.

Anonymous said...

God be with and bless you all, Dawn. Your children are VERY lucky to have such a sensitive and caring mother. I will certainly add you to my prayer list, Joe too. He is obviously lost.

With Love from Mississippi,
Robin E.

Gwen said...

I am so sorry you are going through this. I grew up in a home where my parents stayed together 'for the children'. Dad moved out the day I wrote my last high school exam. I read this somewhere.. not sure if it was on this blog or somewhere else but.. "it's far better for children to come from broken home then to live in one" And I totally agree with that. When I think back now to how life was growing it, it would have been far better for my parents to break up when we were younger then wait until we were older. As much as my parents tried to hide it, we knew things weren't great. It was to the point towards the end that I hated to come home from school because I never knew what I was going to walk in to. It was very stressful growing up.

I hope for your childrens sake that Joe realizes that his kids need him in their life. But at least they know they have you to turn to.

geelizzie said...

I'm really glad to hear that you will be able to stay in your house, having to find a new place to live on top of everything else would just be the icing on the cake wouldn't it? I was married for 15 years with 2 kids when my first husband and I divorced. It was amicable but still a very difficult thing all around. My ex was never much of a dad with his kids, he loved them but just didn't know how to express it and just plain old was not a very good father. He did improve after he remarried and had 2 more kids and became a lot closer with my 2 now that they are adults and he has done quite a bit for them (like paying for my daughter's wedding and helping her fix up her house). Hopefully once the initial trauma of all this passes Joe will come around and once again be a father.

Rosemarie said...

Dawn.....So sad to hear this but at the same time I must commend your strength. Your children are lucky to have such a wonderful mom. Blessings!

Nina said...

I'm sorry. my son's father is an alcoholic and a total liar. we haven't been involved since shortly after I got pregnant and he's never seen his son by his choice. I've made us available, sent pics, I email him with updates and every interaction is him lying about something. last night I was laying there thinking how sad I am for him, not for my son (much) cause it sucks to be raised by a lying, unreliable person. but I worry how am I going to explain this to my son. how can I explain that he was rejected but really wasn't because it had nothing to do with him and everything to do with his father's issues. I'm sure there will be anger toward me and upset but I just keep plugging along and hoping he knows how loved and special he is just from me. its hard though I get where you're coming from.

Natasha said...

Oh Dawn... I'm so sorry :(. I will be praying for you... I dunno, to me it sounds like he's cheating, because why else would he just cut himself off? You may have already known/thought of that, but anyways...

On a lighter topic... LEXI GOT TO MEET MIRANDA COSGROVE?!?!? LUCKY!!!!!!

>:)


Me and my sis would KILL to meet her! We watch iCarly ALL the time, and if my sister met her she'd go BONKERS. I really wanna meet her too though! Does Lexi watch iCarly? Or Drake and Josh? Or does she just like Miranda Cosgrove?

Those are Miranda's two big shows, although she doesn't really film Drake and Josh any more...

Shari H said...

Dawn my heart hurts for you and your kids. They know for sure how much you love them and you are showing them just how strong you are. I'm glad the kids had fun dying eggs. Take care!

Vicki said...

Praying for you and the kids.
God will never leave of forsake you.
Rest in His comfort and love.
Grace and Peace,

Sarah said...

Dawn,

Sorry you have been sick. :( VERY VERY sorry you and your fam are going through this divorce. :( :( I don't think anyone ever imagines things will end like that.

Very sad about Joe's choices. You, however, are doing a great job and are a GREAT Mom--hang in there!

Prayers & hugs to you! :)

Anonymous said...

Hugs to you Dawn! I knew the judge wouldn't make you move, that would be cruel and really add fuel to the fire. On a lighter note...your kids are SO LUCKY to have such a cool mom. Yes, there will be hard times but keep the faith, things will get better. Joe will eventually thaw and most likely want to be a part of their lives....Sharon

Rox said...

I can totally relate to what you're going through, except that I only have 3 children. I finally left my husband 2 years ago after 20 years of marriage. I stayed way too long trying to make it work for the kids. I finally came to the realization that it was worse on the kids trying to stay. He is an alcoholic, abuses prescription drugs, compulsive gambler and sex addict, so he cheated on me numerous times during our marriage. During the marriage he also was a very hands on dad, helping with homework, attending all sporting events, etc. Last year he moved 1500 miles away and only sees the kids once a year. He said it was just too painful to stay around and constantly see everything he had lost. Of course, he blames everything on me, I took his children away from him. He still talks to them on the phone several times a week, but is not involved in their lives at all. I never discourage any contact but I figure it is just a matter of time until the kids won't want to have anything to do with him. It breaks my heart for the kids. They are always the ones who suffer the most. It is good that you can stay in your home, the less change for the kids the better. Hang in there and just take it one day at a time. I read an article the other day that correlated Jesus' death and resurrection to problems in our lives...Friday, the day Jesus died is when our catastrophic event happened, Saturday is our day of greiving, waiting for our Sunday, the resurrection. There is always hope in Jesus, you will have your resurrection day just hold on to His promises and keep your trust in HIM!

Anonymous said...

Dawn - I am so sorry for your and the kids that Joe is taking the attitude and actions that he has decided upon. Maybe once the divorce is final, he will have a change of heart. The judge had a no-brainer in leaving you and the kids where you currently reside. He would have had to been paid off to have the seven of you move out. Joe's already gone. It's abandonment.

SSO - Did his family stop corresponding with the kids too?

It's such a sad situation. ((Hugs)) to all. If you ever want to blow off steam...

Karen

Crystal said...

I hope that Joe wakes up and sees that he is hurting the kids and himself. I barely knew my biological father. It really hurt growing up thinking he didn't care. At least I did have a "dad" in my life (a man that has been my "dad" for over 25 years now). I did try to establish a relationship with my biological father when I got a little older, but he didn't want one. He flat out told me I was nothing to him, and it hurt. And he died a lonely man. But even though I had (and continue to have) a great "dad" in my life, and I am a grown woman with 3 children of my own, it still hurts that my father wanted nothing to do with me.

Diane B said...

Spoiler Alert! this may sound a little unmsympathetic but it's meant with love........

I get what people are saying about how this must be hard for Joe and that's why he's pulling away. Well, boo-frickety-hoo! I'm guessing it's pretty damn hard for you too but you are putting your kids first and that's what parents do. You are doing a kick ass job Dawn! You are being there for your kids and doing the job of 2 parents and making sure your kids know they are loved. I admire that. It's gotta be tough.

You are also giving your kids an example of a strong woman who will not let anger make her bitter. Instead of pulling away because it's hard or painful to you (which is a cop out) you are putting on your big girl panties and dealing with it! ROCK ON MY FRIEND.

Sometimes it just really sucks to be a grown up but it's tragic when grown ups don't do the things they need to in order to ensure their kids get to have a childhood.

Know this: when your kids turn out to be wonderful, caring, responsible and loving adults they will know which parent they take after. (However, in my case I was about 27 before I really appreciated my mom!)

Take care and know you have one heck of a group rooting for you and your kids.

Karen said...

Okay, I KNOW you have hardly any time to yourself anymore. But I do want to recommend a book that helped me get through my divorce and the first few years following it. In fact, I gave my copy away and just checked it out from the library recently to re-read it. The name is "Becoming Whole After Divorce" by Sheila Ellison. I can't identify with some of the same things you are going through nor some of what she went through, but there are enough emotional similarities that I felt a lot of support just from a book.

You are doing a great job doing a difficult job and your kids will be better off for it. Stay strong for yourself and for your kids. Let your network of friends continue to help when you need them...they will be your strongest support network right now.

Anonymous said...

Praying for you Dawn.

Anonymous said...

Dawn, I will be praying for you. My divorce was final last November and it has been difficult at times. I have mourned the loss of "happily ever after" but God is faithful, and He carries us through the rough times

ashley nicole said...

Here's hoping to Joe changes his mind and at the very least wants visitation...and I agree with a previous commenter, maybe he's afraid that he wouldn't be a good influence on the kids right now.

Dorothy said...

Can I just say "ditto?" I echo all the thoughts and feelings the others have left. It just made me sick in the pit of my stomach when I heard he didn't want joint or partial custody. His loss. May God bless you and all your children, and I wish I lived closer so I could help with babysitting or car-pooling, or just anything. You are an awesome mommy to those children. My sister is a single mother of 5 children all under the age of 5. I am in awe of her and the way she takes care of them all the way she does. I have much respect for you and my sister!! Hugs!!!

brent said...

he might have a terminal illness and that is why is doing what he is doing to save the kids greive

Anonymous said...

Hugs to you and your kids. Hopefully, some day they will all be able to fully understand that their father's lack of involvement in this part of their lives was HIS CHOICE, and not anything that they did. You are doing a fabulous job keeping them in as much of a routine as you can. Your whole family is in my thoughts and prayers.

nutralady2001 said...

Hi Dawn don't ever feel you have to apologize for not keeping up with your blog. So sorry you are going through this and Joe is doing what he's doing.

You're doing a fantastic job ! x

Adventures In Babywearing said...

Dawn, I've been meaning to send you a note. If you need anything, please let me know.

Love,
Steph

Jen said...

My my my... all I can offer atm is a HUGE hug sweetie. I bite my tongue on the rest....except the pics. ;) Those are so great! (hugs)

Kevin said...

Hi Dawn,

I just came across your blog from a Google search. Be strong for the sake of your kids. I'm sure that your husband does not, at this point of time, love his children any less. Perhaps he is keeping away as he may need to come to terms with the divorce. Whether or not it makes it harder for the children to deal with this, remains to be seen. Children need to be informed of what is going on, as they are affected.

Trust in the courts to give a fair order. Your attorney should, if s/he is competent in the area, be able to show the court the main issues surrounding the divorce. Also, consider the collaborative divorce: A divorce where the parties strive for a settlement that is best for them both.

I would recommend this book: Happily Ever After Divorce. It was written by a lady who went through a divorce. Who knows, you may also come up with your own book one day. Book writing is about sharing your experiences. The main question is whether you feel you have something to say.

Wishing you good luck and God bless.

Kevin Koo

Anonymous said...

sorry about everything thatz happening...huge hugs to you :) hope joe reads these comments and comes to his senses..I am really stopping myself hard from calling him any names...

take care!

Belinda said...

I have only two words for you..
YOU ROCK!
And I don't mean in a Broklyn's egg sort of way.
I think with a little more green they could have been minniature Emu eggs.
Feel better soon.
*Big Hugs*
Be good
Belinda in Brisbane Australia

RubyT said...

Dawn:
My XH went through a period like this where he said he was "separating in his own way." Our boys were 3 and 5 then. However, he did come around. He mostly operated as "fun dad," more of an uncle than a dad, but he did see them and everything. At first, though, he just withdrew.

Hopefully, once Joe gets through whatever it is, he will resume a relationship with the kids as well.

Hugs to you all.

Sam said...

I'm sorry that things have turned out this way, and hopefully in time your soon-to-be ex husband will pull himself together and be a part of their lives again. I am a product of divorce and it was the best decision they could have made for us. Seriously. The day to day tension disappeared and they were able to move on with their lives. I know having a strong mom was invaluable to me, as it will be for your kids. Much love and good wishes through this time of trial. :)

Denise said...

*sigh*

Oh dear, all I can tell him is that this will come back to bite him on the a***.

Children are not stupid, they can work things out for themselves, and believe me once you distance yourself from your children, it's a long long hard road back.

My ex did the same thing, and even now some 16 years later, his relationship with his daughters is... strained.

I honestly don't think they have ever forgiven him for removing himself from their lives to the extent he did.

My heart goes out to you all, along with my best wishes.

Laura said...

Wow! Where was I and how did I miss you being separated????

I recently divorced myself (separated in August, divorced official in January) and I have to say that I agree with you in that people, generally, don't go into marriage expecting to eventually divorce and with kids involved (I have 1 son who's 5), you try to do your best to "keep it all together". But, you're so right--sometimes it is actually so much better (as in my and my son's case) when divorce happens. My ex wasn't a great father to begin with and now, it's kind of "forced" on him and he does well. Our son knows that we both love him, that his dad and I just can't be together, but that doesn't and will never change our love for him! I'm sorry to hear that Joe is backing out of his children's lives! He is missing so much! He may be hurt, angry, confused, etc. about the marriage situation, but he really needs to "man up" and get back with his kids---they'll remember this and it will be much harder for him to re-establish relationships later. Such a shame because they are really missing out on a great dad and, eventually, will begin to not care.

Keep your chin up as it will get easier and better over time (I know everyone says that, but it IS true!) Keeping fingers crossed that Joe comes around soon before he damages his chances with his beautiful children!! Take care and best wishes!!!

Sunnyworld said...

So sorry to hear about this divorce; but, you are most fortunate that you are staying in your home.

As for Joe not wanting visitation or custody: Then, don't give it to him. I say that not to be mean, but to help you go on; if he isn't going to be in the kids' lives, then it will be easier to know that now. You can always agree to have him see them when he is ready. If he doesn't have custody or visitation, then you can have the say-so in things without him undercutting what you think is best. My daughter has custody, and STILL he tries to undercut what she feels is best for the children. Plus, when he has visitation, he spends the entire time they are with him saying bad things about their mom. Not so good!

Just keep on keeping on, and continue to pray for guidance, and things will work out.

Liz@thisfullhouse said...

You and those gorgeous kids of yours are in my thoughts and prayers, my friend!

Anonymous said...

Sending you hugs and prayers. My heart goes out to you and your kids. And I pray that God softens their father's heart because this is hard enough for them without him reacting the way he is.

One day at a time & lots of prayer will get you all through this. God bless your sweet family!

Lyuda said...

That is so sad to hear. I will keep you in my prayers, Dawn. Keep going strong and whenever you can, do take some time out for yourself and connect with God. Remember that you are not alone in this, you got many friends with you and many cyber friends praying and supporting you. Allow yourself to lean on others for support and encouragement. I don't know if this is helpful but I know that when I am so stressed and feel like it is all too much, it helps me to remember that I got friends and family to support and help me. (BIG HUG!!)

Kiki Nakita said...

Dawn,

I realize this is a hard time, but it will get better with time. I'm 23, and my parents divorced and moved to seperate countries when I was 8.

I Didn't see my Dad much at all until I was 14, and now we see each other all the time. Once I grew up, I re-connected with him.

I'm sure over time, you're children will do the same.

Good luck!

Shari said...

Dawn:

You're a trooper! You are doing the best you can with what you've been dealt! Just keep doing what you're with the kids. Tell them their Daddy loves them. You are doing the right things. You are a GREAT Mom! We understand if you aren't blogging as much Dear! You are raising six kids alone.

Maybe Joe is really depressed and he doesn't know what to do or where to turn. Maybe he just can't deal with it. I don't know but I sure hope he changes around for the kids' sake.

I am praying for you! You have always been an inspiration to me and I appreciate you!

Lovingly with hugs,

Shari

Sherry said...

Praying that Joe's heart will change and that you and the kids will be okay regardless of his decisions.

Anonymous said...

Dear Dawn,

Please know that your fellow bloggites love you and your kids. You have shared your life and heart with us and we count it a blessing to know you.

I will continue to pray for you, your kids and yes, Joe. My heart hurts for all of you all but I know that the Lord can carry you all through this.

(((HUGS))) Texas Size hug!

~Lisa K. Dallas, Texas

WhisperingWriter said...

I am so sorry about your impending divorce. I hope everything works out and that Joe comes around so he can see the kids.

And by the way, I love that first egg. Very pretty.

TDM Wendy said...

My heart breaks for you and your kids. What an awful, unplanned situation. I just wrote (but have not yet posted it) a post on divorce. It seems in our lives (my husband and I) that a lot of women are bailing out on their husbands . . . usually because of an affair.

Seems like yours is one of the true and few cases where you've exhausted your marital resources. Nothing else you could have done. A divorce that you did not want. UGHHHH! Praying for you. Praying for you. Praying for you. Praying for Joe-that God would change his heart.

Anonymous said...

Dawn.. I feel for you and I know what you are going through. I have been separated/divorced for 15 years now. My daughter was 2.5 years old when this occured. I was at a gathering one night where a young woman proceeded to tell me how she knew that she would never divorce. Her grandparents and her parents had both been married for many years and she just knew that would be the case for her and her husband. I commented the same to her as you mention in your blog: I never went into my marriage thinking that I would get a divorce. I was married for 9 years and did everything that I could to make it work. Do not compare yourself to others or let others compare you to them. You know what your situation was/is and you know that you are doing what is best for your kids. An acquaintance at the time wrote me a letter. She mentioned that she had gone through a divorce many years previous. It was a difficult time. 3 years later she said she was driving in her car and singing at the top of her lungs knowing that she was truly happy once again. Your time will come. In the mean time my prayers are with you and your kids! Take good care,
Jenny F.

Anonymous said...

Joe's parents must be so proud that they raised such a "loving, caring man that puts his kids first". Note the sarcasm.

Even if he wants to get back at you, he should suck it up, and think of his kids. That is so selfish of him.

Again, his parents must be so proud.

Amy said...

You're awesome, Dawn, and don't forget it! I read all the comments, and one stuck with me (for bad reasons). In a sea of people saying "keep going, you're doing great, Joe is making his own decisions" there was one lonely little person telling you that it's your job to MAKE him see the kids.

I'm bringing this up because I hope it didn't stick for you. It's not your job...it's not even possible. You are doing so much. It sounds like this situation came about because you could no longer run your life and his. To suggest that you should go back to that part of your life (with a man you can't even contact) is insane.

You have a big support system out here, even if we aren't around in real life. Although, I live in Chicago and when I read posts like this one I really want to come to your house and help you out for a day!

MagnoliaPrincess said...

Dawn,
I'm really sorry that Joe has pulled away like he has. You're right there is no telling what his reason is unless he chooses to tell it. My only advice is what I got from my son's therapist when he was going through difficulties with his dad after our divorce. He'd pulled away too and I'd always told my son the same thing "you're dad loves you" but I'd always make excuses too like he was working or something but the therapist said to stop that. He said to always be truthful to the kids so they could know at least one parent could be counted on for truth and support. I stopped defending or trying to defend my ex's actions but instead with the therapist help figured out the best thing to tell my son which is something like this:
I do not understand why your dad is making the choices he's making or doing what he is doing but I do believe that he loves you and even if he never finds his way back to being your dad there is nothing that you or I ever did that could cause that behavior from him. He owns his own choices and his own behavior. I love you and I'm here for you no matter what and that will never change.
Just wanted to let you know these words just in case you like me start to fall into trying to shield the children from hurt by trying to make up reason's and excuses for his choice to not be around. The therapist said that only showed the child they had two parents they couldn't depend on. They aren't stupid, they know a lie when they hear one even if they pretend to believe you. As our therapist said you never bad mouth the other parent but you also do not make up lies to excuse their behavior. That particular tightrope is a very thin line and its hard not to fall on one side or the other but the words he gave me helped tremendously. I hope they help you.

Good luck to you and the children and may God bless all of you and make this a smooth and easy a path as is possible to make in this situation.

Tania said...

I completely agree with you... you 'try' for the kids, but you don't 'stay together' for the kids if it isn't working out. It is so much healthier for your kids if they see two seperate parents in healthy relationships rather than two parents 'sticking it out' in an unhealthy one. Kids grow up and imitate us and we need to make sure that we are giving them healthy relationships so that as they grow, they seek out healthy relationships... be strong... you rock!

Devin said...

We are living parallel lives, Dawn. I've got six kids too, going through a divorce, no cooperation, just hatred. It's all so very ugly that you can't believe it's really your life. Only difference is we're having a huge custody battle that's lasted a year with final trial not scheduled until April 2011. Two years of hell, pure hell. I'm so sorry.

Jen Farrell said...

Dawn, you're an amazing mom, and an awesome person. I can't imagine how difficult this is. I hope Joe will rethink this and decide to once again be the father you know him to be. I jokingly complain about having to share my beautiful daughter with her dad, but the truth is I would much rather be in my situation than yours, (sorry :-)
You are so optimistic, though and i know you will find a way to soar through this season of your life like a Phoenix. Saying prayers for you Dawn. (and Im not a big pray-er)
-jen

Jean said...

I am sorry that you are going through divorce. My ex husband acted a lot in the same way that Joe is acting now. I couldn't understand for the life of me how he could go from an active father to hardly ever seeing the kids. He also turned very hateful and ugly to me. Then I found out that he was having an affair, and it made a lot of sense. He acted that way to lessen his own guilt. That was 8 years ago and two of my kids are grown now. The youngest is 15. It seems like another lifetime. I am such a different person and for years have been happier than I ever was. No one mourned and grieved my marriage more than me. That's how I felt when I was going through it anyway. But I got past that and you will too. Being a single parent is very hard, but it is also very fulfilling. It's also more peaceful if that makes any sense. You are a good mother. You can do this and come out of it stronger and happier than you have ever been. It just takes time. Don't rush the process. It will come. I wish you a lifetime of happiness.

Magda said...

Oh Dawn, major hugs to you.

I see your loyal readers have pretty much said all that needs to be said.
Just know that many of us are thinking of you and wish you and the kids peace and all the best.

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