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XH parenting issues!

We have been divorced for 1.5 year. We haven't had any problems until now. I always knew that he was letting our now 4 yr old DD sleep with him. Wasn't a problem even though she has her own room at his house.

Now he tells her that if she sucks her fingers, she cannot sleep with him rather than make her sleep in her room. Now, I am having a hard time getting her to sleep in her own bed without throwing a fit.

Second, we ditched bottles when she was 12 months old. This weekend, he held her birthday party and someone got her a bottle...real one. He filled it up with juice and she has been drinking out of it. When I wouldn't refill it, she threw a fit saying that it stops her from crying. I'm going to pitch the bottle but how do I bring up with him about giving it to her in the first place and about the sleeping issue? At least, without blowing my top.

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Asked by Jademom07 at 8:53 AM on May. 16, 2011 in Relationships

Level 34 (64,323 Credits)
Answers (9)
  • Just write a letter and stay calm and professional in it. Send it certified mail and keep a copy for yourself. Document all of it. That way if and when you need to go back to court you have proof you brought it to his attention.

    Answer by gemgem at 8:55 AM on May. 16, 2011

  • Sounds like you will have to explain to her that bottles are for babies and she is a big girl. we always have a very hard time the next 2 days after the kids come back from their dad's house. put your foot down and tell her that throwing a fit isn't going to help and ignore her fits at home or stick her in timeout. Maybe ask him if he can to avoid bottles (give him bottle rot as an excuse) and ask him about the sleeping thing and see what his reasoning is.

    Answer by zoejains_momma at 8:58 AM on May. 16, 2011

  • Honestly... his house his rules. You can let him know that you disagree with his parenting style or how he is handling things, but you cannot demand he changes it unless it's actually harming your child. I wouldn't write a letter, honestly from all the judges I've seen if you took something like this too court you'd get nailed for wasting their time. And in the large scope of things, taking an issue like this to court IS a waste of time when they've got child abusers and drug addicted parents to deal with. I'd sit down with him and say that you are hitting some speed bumps with your DD due to some different rules at the different houses and see if the two of you can't work out some sort of agreement that works for everyone.

    And who gets a bottle for a 4 yo? I agree with you on trashing it, that's ridiculous.

    Answer by miss_lisa at 9:01 AM on May. 16, 2011

  • Neither of what you describe is abusive. They are life style choices. You can write him a letter, or phone him but what he does on his own time with his daughter is his business. In other words, he doesn't have to listen to your suggestions. I don't mean any of this in a bashing type of way, but once a divorce happens, the former partners don't have a say in what goes on in the other home. And this includes what is going on with the children. Your daughter is old enough to understand that in one home there are certain rules and expectations and in the other home, there are others. She is not a baby. Just tell her, no bottles at mommy's house. As far as the sleeping situation goes, she is more than old enough to sleep in her room at both houses.

    Answer by lilangilyn at 9:13 AM on May. 16, 2011

  • miss_lisa and lilangilyn...I never said I was taking this to court nor was I implying that it was abusive.

    I asked how to bring the subject up as rational adults and I am by no means "demand he changes".

    As parents, we should be able to discuss the best interest of our child and some of these things are not in her best interest. So, talking about how to change that for the better should be of our highest priority.

    Comment by Jademom07 (original poster) at 10:01 AM on May. 16, 2011

  • Ask him if you two can sit down and discuss some things about your daughter. Preface the conversation with a statement that you aren't laying out ultimatums or telling him what to do, but there are some concerns you have about your daughter. And then just describe the way she is reacting to the sleeping and the bottles. Keep it neutral and focused on how you can work together to avoid these negative behaviors.

    You should also address it directly with DD and tell her that daddy might allow XY or Z, and that's fine for daddy's house, but you don't XY or Z because..... We have a blended family with 4 out of our 5 kids going back and forth between households to some degree, and all of our kids know that it's up to the parents in each household to set the rules and consequences for that household. We don't call the other parents unless it is a big deal. Don't let your DD manipulate you or pit you two against each other.

    Answer by riotgrrl at 11:01 AM on May. 16, 2011

  • Jademom, our comments re:court were more directed toward gemgem who suggests you document this in case you ever need to take this to court.

    I am curious, why were you so angry? I understand it's frustrating, but blowing up over it? That's a bit of an over reaction IMO. Stuff like this is going to keep happening over the next 14 years.

    Answer by miss_lisa at 5:34 PM on May. 16, 2011

  •'s not that I am angry over it. he has a way of turning things into being my fault...twisting things around to make him the good guy. I was looking for some positive ways to bring it up to keep the conversation from going off of the deep end.

    Certain things I can say, that I don't intend to come across as 'his fault' or laying blame, he will take that way so I was just needing a way to open the conversation in a constructive way.

    And, I didn't realize that your comments were re: gemgem...that went over my head, lol.

    Comment by Jademom07 (original poster) at 9:24 PM on May. 16, 2011

  • It's all good. If that's how conversations usually go, I'd suggest going with e-mailing or writing him a letter addressing the issues. That way you can read over it a couple times and if he wants to freak out you don't have to actually hear him do it.

    Answer by miss_lisa at 9:58 PM on May. 16, 2011

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