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Getting him to be an involved parent

Posted by Anonymous
  • 10 Replies

My ex is Navy, he lives in Norfolk while our daughter and I live in Florida. He used to be really great at keeping in contact and taking leave, checking on her, Ect. Now things have drastically changed. His last few leave attempts haven't been approved so he's now going on eight months not seeing our daughter and his calls hardly ever happen, we have to be the one to call him. He's distancing himself from her it feels like. He and I have always had a great friendship, best friends, even after the break up but now I feel like hes changing. He usually tells me everything even who his latest interest is but I feel like he's pulling away from us both. Our daughter goes nights crying because he's not around, she makes up bed time stories where we are a happy family once again and it kills me. How do I get him to see he's missing precious years of her life by not even bothering to contact us? That he can't get this time back. I sent him an email this week of her swimming without floaties for the first time and he hasn't even bothered to tell her he's proud of her. Are we better without him in our lives? I know I'll miss him terribly but I fear for my daughter not having him around if I just decide to give up putting fourth effort on making him a part of her life. He doesn't send her cards, letters or even gifts for holidays. He no longer asks me for pictures of her. Is he trying to get away and I'm  just refusing to admit it to myself? How do I get him interested in being involved in her life again? He tells me he cries some nights while he's away from us and I believe him so why is he acting this way? I know he loves her. Also, he's dating a woman that has two children. What do i tell our daughter? She's four she won't understand he loves her even if he's taking care of another woman's children. The relationship hasn't been going on long and I don't know much but he told me she asked him to not talk about her to me and that she'd like to meet our daughter. Is this possibly her doing? Again, how do I get him to be involved with our daughter? Sorry so long :-/ Any advice/tips would be appreciated!!!

Posted by Anonymous on Sep. 7, 2013 at 11:12 PM
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Replies (1-10):
by Silver Member on Sep. 7, 2013 at 11:42 PM

Could he be deployed or underway and you just don't know?  It could be lots of things.  The new girlfriend discouraging contact, him losing interest, guilt of not being as involved as he should keeping him from making contact.  All you can do is ask, and try not to be confrontational about it.

by Courtney on Sep. 8, 2013 at 12:17 AM

 Just ask him. Also is there a way you can take her to see him?

by Darby on Sep. 8, 2013 at 4:21 AM

I would ask him.  Call him on the phone and share your feelings with him.  

by on Sep. 8, 2013 at 9:26 AM

have you and your daughter tried calling HIM. Maybe he feels left out. And he doesn't need to always be the one to initiate contact. I do think he needs to be the one a lot of the time, but if you're feeling like this, you should try contacting him. More than just an email. Send him pictures-don't wait for him to ask. SHOW him what he's missing out on.

Is it possible that the new girlfriend is the one convincing him to pull back? Is he feeling like since it's been so long away from you two that maybe your DD is better off and won't be hurt so much if he just...ditches out? (As in, how is his self esteem regarding his relationship with DD?)

by Anonymous 2 on Sep. 8, 2013 at 10:16 AM

I hate to say this, but this can be a pattern for years to come when he has a girlfriend. There are some men who get wrapped up in their girlfriend's children, and they will forget their own. What they forget about is that unless he marries the girlfriend, and the children become devoted to him that he could have a mess on his hands when he needs help most in his life from his children. This could happen in old age or after a life altering disability. Some women will force men to abandon their children when it comes to this type of situation. Some are insecure, or some were raised this way. However, his own child(ren) may or may not be there for him when he needs them most in life. My Mom is a retired Registered Nurse with over thirty years in a nursing home, and she has seen many times over adult kids tossing their elderly parents in with a minor disability cared for at home. Trust me. If he can do this to your own daughter, he will do it to any future children he may have. I would not tell him or his girlfriend or wife at all this because they will never believe you at all. My Mom's neighbor's daughter married a deadbeat (refused to pay child support) father of two children, and he became the deadbeat father of two more children when they divorced.

by Nikki on Sep. 8, 2013 at 11:52 AM

I was wondering the same... Why can't you take her to see her daddy? I will tell you, as a child of divorce, I still remember my mother not helping matters with visitation with my dad. 

Quoting NickLukeandEmma:

 Just ask him. Also is there a way you can take her to see him?


by Anonymous 3 on Sep. 8, 2013 at 5:22 PM
Is he an ex boyfriend or husband?

Why did you all separate?

Signs sure point in the direction that he wants to move on with his life and forget your daughter. :-/
by Anonymous 1 - Original Poster on Sep. 8, 2013 at 5:27 PM

I don't have a license (I have epilepsy and am unable to get one yet) so I can't drive up there to visit him nor do I have a job so I can't pay for airplane tickets. We are the ones to always make contact first, he has like one week out of the month where he decides to call first. But it hasn't been that way in a long time. As for his underway schedule, I know it. So I know he isn't underway at the moment. I text him pictures and mail him printed out pictures and make USB drives with videos of her.

by Melissa on Sep. 8, 2013 at 5:52 PM
Don't you have a custody agreement? I don't have a job, either but I'm still required by law to fly my kids to see their dad.
by Anonymous 1 - Original Poster on Sep. 8, 2013 at 9:13 PM

No no custody agreement 

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