Kids and divorce

Being a mom and going through a divorce is hard. There are so many raw emotions with this divorce. My ex has gotten completely nasty, and it hurts. But I respect my kids, and I refuse to step to his level, so I remain tightlipped and only curteous, even when it’s near impossible. And then I find out that my daughter is telling her dad all these lies about me, saying I say bad things about him, or my family is. It is so hard! And still I remain tightlipped. I have not even confronted my daughter about this, because what would I say? At times it is so confusing as to how I’m supposed to react. Do I defend myself and plead my case? Do I remain silent and therefore be innocent of all wrongdoings? Am I being too passive? And what about when it’s too much to handle, how much emotion am I allowed to share? And I do not talk about their dad with them, except to support them when they are sharing what they’ve done at dad’s house, or about his latest promise to them. After all of the drama that went down on Sunday, my ex peeled out of the parking lot without even saying goodbye to the kids. When I got to my daughter, she asked where dad was, and I had to tell her he had left. And she burst into tears. And still, I said nothing about him. I just held her, told her I was sorry, and that he probably thought she had said goodbye already. She full on cried for a minute, then picked herself up and wiped her face. Then she acted like nothing had happened. It kills me.

As a mom, I am supposed to be strong for my kids. In the beginning of this divorce, I was a mess. My family stepped in, and I got my footing back. But ever since I regained my strength, I have been really careful to not show my weaknesses to my kids. This last Sunday I full-on cried in front of my daughter, and I was so ashamed. I just have so much weighing me down, and it’s hard. But I did not want my daughter witnessing this, because it’s about her dad. And as I cried, she was so uncomfortable, and I could tell she just wanted out of there. It used to be that if my daughter saw me crying, she would ask me what was the matter, and give me a hug. Now, she acts like I have the plague, and is embarassed by me. And she’s only 7!

The most frustrating thing about all of this is that I have worn myself out in being the best mom I can be, and thinking of them first, sacrificing so much in order to keep them happy. At times it seems like it’s for nothing. I do not expect my ex to praise me or anything, but when he disrespects me as bad as he does, and allows his girlfriend to crap all over me, I wonder why I stuck around so long. It makes me feel that the only reason he said he loved me was because I was there. And then my kids, my daughter is playing us like a fiddle. And I get that. I understand she is telling her dad all those things because she is praised in a way for them. He then gets verbal with me, and I am left to defend myself against these lies, and my daughter skips off like nothing’s going on. And I love her so much, it hurts. I know why she’s doing it, she’s such an angry child inside, and this is her way of getting attention from him. But it hurts that it’s at my expense. I know she is too young to fully see the magnitude of all this, but it still hurts. It makes me wonder if there is some maliciousness in her, wanting to pay me back for leaving their dad.

I am still trying for full custody, but I’ve barely gotten through all the paperwork. I know it’s the right decision, but part of me still is scared that I will ruin my kids by doing so. But with my ex’s nature, and all that they have already witnessed before and after the divorce, I know that a lot of damage has already been done. But I also know that once everything is underway, my daughter will hate me even more. I am not taking them away from him, I just think it’s vital that they spend less time over there. As it is, it always takes me 2 full days to get them back to normal when they get back home due to too much sugar and junk food, and 2 days without rules. But when they are calmed down, they are the best kids, and everything seems right and in place.

*Lord, I place my children in your hands, where they belong. They are your children. I am praying that you will protect them in the battles to come. All I want for them is to remain innocent and unhurt, and to be able to grow up into strong and successful adults. And I know that right now they couldn’t possible understand what’s going on, but I do pray that one day they will know just how much I love them. And please, protect me and keep me strong through this battle. Keep me from laying down and giving in by focusing me on what is best for these children you have given me. I pray that all insults, lies, and accusations that are hurled at me will only bounce off me and won’t deter me from my mission. Please protect us, Lord.
And Lord, I do pray for my ex. I wanted so much for this divorce to be done in a calm manner, resulting in some sort of friendship. I still pray that one day this can happen so that we will be at peace, and our children will prosper the most. I pray that your will would be to calm my ex’s heart and really see what is best for his kids.
Amen

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