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I can't believe I'm admitting this but...

Started by bigsigh2004, Sep 22, 2004, 04:55:44 PM

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My wife and I split two years ago. It wasn't pretty and I admit I pulled out all the stops to make things very hard for her. Stopped paying bills for the house so we were forced to sell, didn't pay child support because I wasn't "ordered" to, the works. Everything I was advised to do. (I can't remember what my screen name was on here back then, sorry!) Pretty much put her in the poverty position to where she had to fire her attorney and get a state one.

I wanted out, I wanted everything and I was on a mission. I had met someone else and wanted to get our life together going. Which I did. I remarried the day my divorce was final, the custody of our child was still in question.

When it came to custody, my new wife fully expected my ex wife to get custody & me visitation. She pretty much stayed out of the proceedings and when I came home telling her my 4 year old daughter would be coming to live with us full time she wasn't happy to say the least. Her exact words were "how the hell did that happen?".

My new wife has a 16 year old daughter and apparently was looking forward to having her freedom back in two years. The father of her child hasn't been around since my SD was about 2. My new wife and I were not planning on having any children together, she had her tubes tied a few years ago. She expected that "life" to include me. Travel, etc.

Now my ex wife wasn't a bad mother, but I was just found to be in a better position to raise my daughter. Granted, in hindsight, and talking with my current wife, I put her in the position to struggle with how ugly our divorce was.

My new wife resents me for how I treated my ex now that the whole story has come out. She refuses to help with my daughter. Says your kid your problem and goes on her way. I fought for my daughter fully expecting my new wife to take on the step-mom role. She is a mom already, I thought maternal instincts were maternal instincts, no matter who the kid was. Was I wrong for that assumption?

My new wife will go out with her daughter and leave mine at home with my, my little girl doesn't understand why and cries. I can't think of anything my daughter DOESN'T cry about these days. After a long day of work, the last thing I feel like doing is sitting on the floor and coloring, so what does she do? Cries. Even if I offer to read her a book later when I've rested a bit, here come the waterworks.

My new wife goes out with her friends, and since I can't find care for my daughter, I'm left home. I'm worried she is going to cheat on me and leave me.

I don't want to be a "single dad". I feel kids need a mother, be it biological or step, ESPECIALLY a little girl. If my kid were a boy then maybe I'd understand him a little better but my daughter? She's gone from the cute little baby I knew to an alien!

I guess what I want to know is, after everything, how awful of me would it be to go to my ex and tell her she can have our daughter back? I don't want to admit I was wrong because I'll never hear the end of it, but I just can't do this myself. Without support of my new wife, this is just too much. How do I do this without looking like the biggest schmuck on the planet?

Am I striking a huge blow to father's rights?


From what I can gather, it seems that you already see that you are hurting your daughter because of the situation and already think that her mom might be better suited to care for the emotional needs of your daughter. Why not start out by increasing overnight visitation with her mom? Just tell your ex that you would like help with the little girl while you work some things out with your new wife. Sure you made life hell for your ex but hopefully your ex will realize that she loves her daughter more.
As for fathers rights, just forget about it. You aren't advocating anything by putting your daughter's feelings second to them. If you do what is best for the child, that shows that fathers can be fair and nurturing. I would say that speaks more than just gettting custody.


Sorry, but best advice is dump the new wife and concentrate on being a father. It'll be a new experience for you.


Give the poor child back to her mother. She deserves to loved, cared for & cherished 100% by everyone in her life. Then you can go on & travel happily with the greedy, irresponsible, self centered, insensitive bitch you call a wife...for as long as it lasts. GEEE ISN'T THAT JUST GREAT!!! Small sacrafice for your happiness eh?  You have little appreciation for the most precious gift you could have even been given. (Is the bedroom really THAT good?) There are millions women out there but you'll only have this one moment in time to raise your little girl. YOU WILL NEVER HAVE ANOTHER CHANCE!!  

Don't worry about this being a blow to father's rights. Your pulling out all the stops had nothing to do with Father's Rights it only had to do with winning, with money & your stupid pride. Now that you won you don't like the prize..it's a burden, it's too hard. I'm just shaking my head. I doubt there is anything anyone can say to make you realize that nothing worthwhile in life is ever easy.

We are more concerned with the mental & physcial health of the child. The way your wife is treating YOUR CHILD is just wrong, it's hurting her, it's confusing her & she needs to be removed from the situation immediately. Stop the suffering. This would be a good weekend to transfer custody. Come to an agreement then file it with the courts on Monday. There are several forms on this site you can print out. My heart is bleeding for this child as I have a 4 year old too. They are extremely aware at this age. SO SAD!

Heck, at least you were honest.



Wow, if I didn't know better, I'd say you were my ex husband)(
Unfortunately for me and the kids, it's still a scorched earth policy, four years later.

You're not striking a huge blow to father's rights.  Your wife had expectations on how life with you was going to be.  I disagree with her total coldness towards your little girl, however.  How did you manage to get custody?  How bad did you trash your ex wife in court?  If you decide to modify custody, it will bite you in the rear end.  Fighting for custody was a power play, apparently.

I have a couple of suggestions.  If you and the child's mother don't live too far away, maybe you can do 50/50 custody.  For that to work, you have to make amends, so to speak.  Basically apologize for your behavior, and outline what you feel is best for your daughter.

I'm thinking that you're pulling in some good money, considering that your wife expects to travel, etc.  You could send your girl back to her mother, pay her enough money to either stay home with her, or have a housekeeper to watch her while the mother works.  In turn, you would negotiate very liberal visitation for yourself.

Your wife doesn't seem like a very nice person.   You obviously aren't that bad of a person, because you admitted making mistakes.  This can be fixed, but it's going to be painful.  Your little one will be starting school next year.  Can you trust your wife to handle all the things that go along with that?

Good luck :-)


Thanks for the kind words. I read some of the other responses, which I will respond accordingly to that were less than supportive. I wasn't sure if gradual was the way to go or just pretty much go ball over barrel and send my daughter home to mom. I don't want her any more upset than she already is.

I'll probably have to come up with a different reason than having to work on things with my wife though, as my ex will eat that one up....and as much as the other posters want to think this is all about my new wife and making her happy, it isn't...it's me realizing I can't be both mom and dad to my daughter. She DOES deserve more than that.


Ok, sure...there you go, the perfect solution. So on top of my already exhausting job which makes me too tired to be the best dad I can be you are telling me to go through another draining divorce and then support a home by myself, do all the cooking , cleaning etc.

You think that will magically solve all my problems and turn me into super dad huh? You really aren't that much of an idiot are you? I checked out your website, if you want to dispense advice like that, why don't you dump your wife first and then see what it is like to parent alone, no help whatsoever.

Being a parent isn't a "new" experience for me. My child is 4 and I haven't been an absent dad. I just happen to know what my limitations are. I figured out I can't do it alone. This has nothing to do with my wife now really.

If anything I thank her for teaching me a valuable lesson. She has been a single mother for many years, she didn't take the hands off approach out of spite, she did it to show me what it is like to be a full time parent, and I figured out, it isn't for me. I need help. She refuses to "replace" my ex-wife and I now find it was a bad idea to even consider without her input in the first place.

Peanut, do me a favor, you seem like a very bitter angry jerk who would do anything to keep a child from a mom. I don't need advice like yours. I saw enough of your kind on DD when I posted there a while back. Anti-female to the core.

I figured out what is best for my daughter, going back to her mom. What I'm looking for is advice on the best way to approach that, not crap like you are spewing. What part of I realize I can't parent by myself did you not understand?



I didn't mean to make my wife out to sound that bad. I was more concentrating on how my daughter was. she is most important.

My wife was a single mom for many years, as I told the "nut" case she wasn't being cold hearted she was giving me a reality check. I was wrong for assuming she would just automatically take on the mom role. Yes my daughter's feelings are hurt, but aren't I as a parents supposed to knwo how to fix that? I don't. What makes my daughter happy I have found I don't have the energy or inclination for.

Not everyone can parent alone. Most people don't have kids expecting to raise them without help of family or a spouse.

I just don't know if going and dumping her right back at mom's is the best for her or doing it gradually. I huighly doubt that I can do anything over the weekend in one fell swoop, my ex needs to prepare for taking on our daughter full time again, I'd think that would be a bit of a scramble for her with work and everything.

Yes, the divorce and custody battle were all about my pride, I can admit that now. So I'm swallowing all of it.

What is "worthwhile" to me, is my daughter's 100% complete happiness. I thought our big house with the pool, the dog, a step mom and lots of kids in the neighborhood would make her happy. I was wrong.

Is it that wrong to admit I found out I'm the bread WINNER not MAKER?

Kitty C.

Because from your response, you don't have a CLUE.  So you have found that you can't parent alone.  Great, at least you're honest about that.  But it's what YOU are doing to the 3 ladies in your life who have a vested interest in your honestly, namely your daughter, your wife, and your ex.  Yes, your ex, because you're talking about talking the EASY way out and just dumping your child back on your ex because it's 'too much' for you to handle.  No one ever said parenting was easy.  I've done it alone, too.  PD is doing it alone, but then he has a brain-dead ex who truly needs to stay out of her child's life so as not to screw it up anymore than she already has.

PD will be the first to tell you that the IDEAL situation would be 50/50 for the child.  I agree.  But you've got collateral damage going on here that ain't gonna go away.  You screwed up by NOT even talking to your wife about the custody issue in the first place.  Majorly.  If it had been me, I'd been sorely tempted to divorce you myself right then and there.  And tho your wife may be very indignant with the way you've treated her in this aspect, she certainly isn't acting mature in taking it out on your daughter, which is exactly what she's doing.  You BOTH need to grow up!

You've got more problems than just trying to parent your child.  You've made your bed and now you have to lie in it.  If your wife can't be adult enough to NOT take her latent anger against you on the child, what makes you think you two have any chance at a long relationship??  Dammit man, she's REJECTING your child!  That means she rejects you as well.  She knew when she married you that you were a package deal, whether or not your daughter was living with you or not.  Now, just because things aren't going the way SHE wants them to, she's taking it out on the one she sees as causing it all, your daughter, who is only an innocent victim of ALL of you in this.  

You've got some MAJOR fence-mending and soul-seeking to do, buddy.  The bottom line is your daughter, NO ONE ELSE, not your wife or your ex.  You can either suck it up and parent her, as is YOUR responsibility (sharing it 50/50 with her mother is best), or dump all your responsibilities on your ex and play weekend, fun-time daddy and kow-tow to your wife's pleasures.  Which way do you want it?
Handle every stressful situation like a dog........if you can't play with it or eat it, pee on it and walk away.......


I would NEVER NEVER leave my husband alone with the stepkids just out of spite, resentment, or nastiness.

I married him KNOWING about his children and THEY should ALWAYS come first.

DH and I parent my son, 13 together, and his 2 boys, 8 & 10, TOGETHER!!

I can't imagine making DH choose between spending time with me or his chidren, and If DH ever tried to make me make that choice,  my son would win hands down!!

Don't choose your new wife over your daughter.  That can cause more damage than you know.  What kind of abandonment issues do you think that could cause?

Please work out the 50/50 custody plan and tell the new wife to either be a TEAM PLAYER or GET OUT!!