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Disneyland Dad

My ex-DH is becoming a total Disneyland Dad. EOWE, he has the kids (ages 5 & 7) & each visit is a non-stop whirlwind of activity. They eat out every meal (and he is a good cook), go to movies, go to Chuck E Cheese or similar, or to the beach or into the city & stay in hotels. He buys them everything they want--hundreds of dollars every weekend on toys & games. For Christmas, he wants to buy them laptops--he even sent me a text asking if I had a wireless router so the kids could connect to the internet at my house! I said absolutely not on that one. How do you keep up with a Disneyland Dad (or Mom for that matter)? How do I explain it to my skids whose Mom doesn't see them at all? How do we handle the constant barage of gifts? Do I say they can't bring them home? Would you like your 5 year old have a laptop?? Help!!

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Asked by funnyface1204 at 8:03 PM on Oct. 27, 2009 in General Parenting

Level 3 (19 Credits)
Answers (9)
  • Let them have the things. He buys them things becuz he feels guilty. You take care of them. you are the mommy. they will realize that sooner then later. Take pride in yourself and what you do for your children. Don't not let them have things becuz you feel guilty that its from him. They will enjoy it at your house with you. Let him buy away its your love that they will remember.

    Answer by Mrs.Oriaku at 8:24 PM on Oct. 27, 2009

  • I have the same problem, I bought my then 6 y/o a small 4 wheeler to putt around on, Daddy buys her 350 dollars worth of racing riding gear that she hated and only wore one time (now to be sold on craigslist), this past Christmas he bought her a 22 (yes a gun) that she cant have here, we live in the country, he lives in a military town.....makes no sense, and she also got a laptop last yr for christmas, she was 8, it stayed put up til my cpu The only thing you can do is make sure they realize that it isnt like that at mommys house and that you dont show your love for them through materialistic things, money cant buy love, not saying dads dont love the kids, but I think the kids would be better if they werent spoiled by all the materialistic things. Also, maybe you can talk to the ex about how much he spends on the kids????

    Answer by SuperMomof3kids at 8:28 PM on Oct. 27, 2009

  • Actually we are trying to buy our 5 year old his own laptop, but that is because we are home-schooling, and we want him to have limited access to the internet.

    Maybe your ex feels like if he just sits at home with the kids, they wont want to come over anymore. My step-son comes over every weekend, and I feel bad that I can't take him out and do things with him, and that we usually just hang out around the house. He has never complained and I know it's more about spending time together, and not doing fun things. The problem is, even though I get that intellectually, it's hard to just sit at home. If this is new, just be patient, and your ex may calm down over time. I would suggest having the kids keep most of their gifts at his house, if your house is becoming too cluttered. That way too, they have plenty to keep themselves occupied while visiting dad, that doesn't involve going out.

    Answer by my2.5boys at 8:30 PM on Oct. 27, 2009

  • It is easier to do that than stay at home and actually spend time with them. They will see who loves them in the end. Let him spend it and tell him what they need. If he wants to buy all that crap let him less money you have to spend.

    Answer by Cherish050307 at 8:32 PM on Oct. 27, 2009

  • You don't keep up. But you don't get in the way of their time with dad either. It isn't a competition. Although he may be acting as it is. In the end, when they are older, they will know who set limits, who was there to ease the pain through the cuts, bruises, death of pets, made them brush their teeth, took them to the doctor.....who it was who parented them. Dad may be trying to be their friend or their favorite but you are being the parent and grown up. I wouldn't say no if he wants to provide or spend money on his children. I would make sure he pays for the things that need to be paid (child support, food, clothes, braces, medical). And I would request a set amount to go into the college fund for each child. Let him know you love he provides and thinks of the kids AND you want him to continue to do so by making sure they have an education fund.  I'm for not arguing and for you to continue to be the adult.


    Answer by frogdawg at 8:51 PM on Oct. 27, 2009

  • This is the way I look at it... Let him spend the money, let him make them expect him to do so all the time and he will come to find out that he's created Monsters,lol... They know their limits at your house, they don't realize it now but they will respect the fact that they don't get everything they want when they are with you.
    My ex does the same thing. I just sit back and let it happen, and make sure our boys know what's right and wrong. True love doesn't come from the store, or chuckee cheese, it comes from reading stories, spending time with them at home playing a board game, playing in the leaves, planting flowers in the Spring.. Just remember that and don't let him get to you.

    Answer by MrsLeftlane at 9:20 PM on Oct. 27, 2009

  • Ask him to put the money into college funds.

    Answer by rkoloms at 10:41 AM on Oct. 28, 2009

  • IDK what to say about the ex-DH, but my 4 year old has a laptop. He's had it since he was 3. It's good to let kids get a jump on technology. My 9 year old has a desktop. They've both been online since they were 2, supervised, of course.



    Answer by Pnukey at 12:50 PM on Oct. 28, 2009

  • He's trying to buy their love. Maybe he knows there's underlying feelings the kids have for him, and he's trying to push those to the back of their minds by making sure they have fun. I'd tell him that whatever he buys can stay at his house. He keeps buying more and more, and it's filling up your house. While it's nice that he wants the kids to have fun, I don't think he realizes what he's gotten them, since they all go to your house. Maybe if he kept some of the things at home, he'd have more of a reason to stay at home when he has the kids.

    As for the Skids, just explain to them that every child has two parents, and every parent is different. As long as you and DH are treating all the kids equally, they will see that they aren't being pushed aside or anything. They may get jealous over the expensive gifts, but there's really nothing you can do about it.

    Answer by laird6372 at 6:03 AM on Nov. 12, 2009

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