divorced and need advice for my relationship with my girls
I have two teenage daughters, 15 and 17. My ex-husband and I have been apart since 2008 and divorced. I remarried in 2011. Last September, their Dad took a job traveling. I have them 70% of the time now and he has them approx 30%. Our court order is that we have 50/50 visitation with joint custody. That changed when he took this job. Our visitation schedule was a modified 5 and 2. Our girls never spent more than 3 days away from any one parent. However, now that his job takes him out of state and country, this has been a problem. I stupidly agreed that when he was in town the girls could spend the time he had with them. Now I wish I had said we would just go back to regular visitation when he was in town. I go sometimes 10 days without seeing them. The real issue is that everyday that he is away, they call him and text him and will turn off the TV to talk to him or go in their rooms to skype with him etc. I am glad they have a good relationship with him. However, when they are with him, they either don't answer my phone calls or make excuses to get off the phone quickly. They text back sometimes, but very shortly and without emotion. They never call me. I thought I had a good relationship with them. We have lots of love and fun and do many things together when they are with me. We laugh and joke and yes occasionally argue but not very often. Why the drastic difference in their communication with their dad and myself? It hurts so much. The sad thing is he never lets us know for sure when he is leaving or coming home. He does say that the jobs are spontaneous. He does badmouth me, make fun of me, and lie about me to my kids from the things I hear them say and things he says to me. I do not talk negatively about him, because that is their other parent. I just don't understand the cold shoulder I get when they are with him. It even gets to the point of them disrespecting me if I really need an answer to a question that pertains to them or pertains to visitation etc. Sometimes, they just totally ignore me. When they come back home when he leaves town, they act excited to see me and I'm so glad but confused. I just don't get it. Anyone else ever get this treatment. Any ideas?