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truefriendinme
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Posted on Sun, Aug 10, 2008 08:41

Okay, people. These are serious questions. No kidding. I have SO much going on in life, and I need some realtime advice from women who've "been there, done that" before me. I need to make these decisions, but I wanted to get some input from those more experienced than myself (lol!). If you've been through a nasty divorce/ custody battle, then this blog's for you! As a divorcing woman, going through what I would like to believe are some of the same circumstances and feelings that many of you have already conquered, I'd like to pick your minds for some information. I will list some questions I have been rolling about in my head, and would like for you to respond to what ever ones apply to you, or whichever ones you have a truth-based opinion about. 1) did you get custody of your kids (full or shared) and why? 2) did you ever consider taking less than full custody, and if so,why? (PLEASE be honest about this one, the "consider" part-- I really feel like I'm in the minority here...) 3) if you had an ex that was capable of caring for the kids in a decent fashion and you needed to get your life in order (go back to school and such) would you have considered lessening your custodial time? even if it meant "setting a precedent" in the court's eyes...this means that you cannot go back easily. you would have had to stick with this decision the rest of your (and for the kids') lives. 4) do you think a mom is any less of a mom if she does not have at least half custody of the kids? 5) if a mom is in a situation (financialy) where life will be a struggle, no matter if she has the kids or not, would you suggest to her that she take on less of a responsibility of the kids (and pay the ex child support), so she can go back to school? (and fight for more custody later?) 6) or would you suggest she keep the kids the way it is now (half time, shared) and tough it out, paycheck to paycheck, for the duration of the forseeable future? These are some really tough questions, guys. And I'm looking for some help in considering all facets of my situation before making any decisons. Any help you can offer would be appreciated. Thanks--True


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truefriendinme
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Posted on Sun, Aug 17, 2008 14:48

I appreciate those who posted their experiences. I know it's a hard topic, and that would likely be why not many people posted on it. But, on the other hand, that explains why one would ask for others' opinions. I just wanted to hear others'points of view. It helps to #1 know we are not alone, and #2 to try to consider all sides of an equation before trying to solve it. Thanks again.--True


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jjiggl
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Posted on Fri, Aug 15, 2008 13:35

I think that doing what is best for the child is what should be done. Period. My son lived with me when he was growing up, but fortunately, his father was present in his life and was a very great dad to my son--even though he never acknowledged my presence when we were in the same place or room together. His father and I never married. We weren't even in an exclusive, committed relationship, but we were friends with benefits. When I got pregnant, I guess he saw me as his sworn enemy and decided that he would do what he should do for his son and ignore me. I did not make an issue of the way he treated me because it was more important he was a responsible and loving father to his son. And he was and still is. I always felt that what was better for my son was more important than how I felt about his dad. If his father wanted to petition for custody, I would fight it but I would not get into a drawn out battle about it. If I had to give him custody, I would have made sure that his dad could not move out of state, that visitation was spelled out and that all other important aspects would have been addressed and legally documented. As for shared custody, that does not make sense to me. I have heard of children in shared custody cases in which the child lives at one parents home for one week and with the other the other week. To me, this seems very unstable for children. These kind of arrangements are more to appease the parents than for the good of the child. I wish that more parents would think about how to make things good for thier children than about their own pride. As for my feelings about a woman who does not have custody, I don't think any less of her. It takes a man and a woman to make a child, so why can't a man raise a child, too?? This is one of those topics that usually puts me on the wrong side of the concensus. I have been accused of being too liberal and too eager to defend men on this topic.


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AmuseMe
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Posted on Fri, Aug 15, 2008 07:05

Quoting truefriendinme: No, it's not for "alone time". But, I can see why some might think it's for that. The sole purpose of considering this is b/c I work 64hrs a week (four 16 hr shifts) when I don't have the kids, so I can be with them when they are here. With a schedule like that, Nursing school is SO out of the question. It's something I am considering. abuse of the kids is not an issue in this, our breakup was for other reasons.

I'm sorry True, please believe that I did not intend to be harsh in my last posting. When we are left to assume ANYTHING, well, you know how that goes. I am a single mother, too, and I would kill for some alone time. I have had a few days to really think about this and I hope I can add a new perspective. After I left my ex-a-hole, after escaping his mind-f*ck rather, I fell into a depression so deep that without counseling, I didn't have the energy to crawl out of for years. Not only did that depression adversely affect me, it affected my children too. I didn't give them enough attention (and they were super young), I just wanted to be alone. I was a terrible mother, and I will always regret what I have done. I wish that at that time their father was a good father, a loving, trusting father, so I could have sent them to him - because I was in no condition to take care of them myself... but I couldn't, and didn't, and now I have children with behavioral, emotional and attitude problems because I didn't have the time for them they needed all those years ago. If you can trust your ex, and you know in your heart you need this time for you to recoup, honestly I think your son would be better off with his father for the time being. I would just hope that you and he could come to an arrangement outside of the courts... it's too difficult to reverse a judgment once it's been made. No one can judge you for these decision... and I doubt you are in a stable enough frame of mind (right now) to even judge yourself accurately... if your situation is anything like mine was, and you are depressed and stuff, you would be a better mom for sending him to live with his dad for a while. Sending so much love your way, True. Please don't be offended by what I wrote.


In your rocking-chair, by your window dreaming, shall you long, alone. In your rocking-chair, by your window, shall you dream such happiness as you may never feel. –Theodore Dreiser

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Posted on Thu, Aug 14, 2008 05:54

I'm not divorced, but we are separated, but I couldn't imagine my son not being with me. No, I wouldn't even suggest his father getting custody of him. My current situation is not perfect, I lost my job and that was a waking up point for me. I enrolled back in school and for the first time in my life I knew this was going to be my way over the bridge to a better lifestyle for me and my son. It's been hard, but we get by. I moved in with my mom which has been a big help, but after 3 quarters I'm nearing a point that I can find employment within my field. Good Luck!!!!


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ozredhead62
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Posted on Wed, Aug 13, 2008 03:40

Quoting truefriendinme: Okay, people. These are serious questions. No kidding. I have SO much going on in life, and I need some realtime advice from women who've "been there, done that" before me. I need to make these decisions, but I wanted to get some input from those more experienced than myself (lol!). If you've been through a nasty divorce/ custody battle, then this blog's for you! As a divorcing woman, going through what I would like to believe are some of the same circumstances and feelings that many of you have already conquered, I'd like to pick your minds for some information. I will list some questions I have been rolling about in my head, and would like for you to respond to what ever ones apply to you, or whichever ones you have a truth-based opinion about. 1) did you get custody of your kids (full or shared) and why? 2) did you ever consider taking less than full custody, and if so,why? (PLEASE be honest about this one, the "consider" part-- I really feel like I'm in the minority here...) 3) if you had an ex that was capable of caring for the kids in a decent fashion and you needed to get your life in order (go back to school and such) would you have considered lessening your custodial time? even if it meant "setting a precedent" in the court's eyes...this means that you cannot go back easily. you would have had to stick with this decision the rest of your (and for the kids') lives. 4) do you think a mom is any less of a mom if she does not have at least half custody of the kids? 5) if a mom is in a situation (financialy) where life will be a struggle, no matter if she has the kids or not, would you suggest to her that she take on less of a responsibility of the kids (and pay the ex child support), so she can go back to school? (and fight for more custody later?) 6) or would you suggest she keep the kids the way it is now (half time, shared) and tough it out, paycheck to paycheck, for the duration of the forseeable future? These are some really tough questions, guys. And I'm looking for some help in considering all facets of my situation before making any decisons. Any help you can offer would be appreciated. Thanks--True

Well this is really a hard decision that only you and the kids father can make. I think that the priority should be the children, what is best for them. Now it may be that they would be just as well off with either of you, and if so, may make your decision a little easier to make. I would not consider you less of a Mum if you did not have custody of your children. Just like I dont think any worse of my kids Dad that he does not have custody. As long as you still stay involved, give them time and ensure that you show them they are loved, thats all that really matters. Hugs and best wishes to you xx


Life is only as wonderful as you think it is.

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stannosstacey
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Posted on Tue, Aug 12, 2008 19:44

True - I do not have any children but my parents were divorced and my father had nothing to do with us after the divorce even though he lived 2 houses down the street. So in my experience it is most important that the kids are loved and protected and know it. You can be a non-custodial parent and still have an active part in the children's lives and also show them that they are your priority. I can't imagine how hard this decision has to be on you. I wish you the best and hope the answer becomes clear to you.


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truefriendinme
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Posted on Tue, Aug 12, 2008 05:19

Thanks so much Bluegirl and Honesty. I appreciate your posting for me.--True


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Posted on Mon, Aug 11, 2008 19:06

Firstly *huggles* Secondly, I sat long and hard about this very same thing. I came to the conclusins that my children are not of an age right now to decide who they are going off to live with. My "soon to be Ex" is not totally capable.. he married me more for a mother than I think he thought..and somehow the thought of my kiddies living 95% on take aways was not appealing to me. The only down side to this is the fact that I love my own space at times. And with him gone, it is going to be tough. I also have to agree that this is something that you have to think about yourself. Only you really know your own situation, and your children. It is tough on kiddies no matter what way you go.. My thoughts are with you though.. it isn't an easy thing when there are kids involved. Take care, WH


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bluegirl2006
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Posted on Mon, Aug 11, 2008 11:58

I got full custody of my kids strictly because my ex didn't want them. He didn't want any parental responsibility. Didn't even use his visitation rights on a regular basis. It was difficult raising my kids because of this. If your ex is a good dad, I mean a really good dad, it would not be a bad thing or make you a bad mom to allow him custody, but it would be very important for you to use your visitation rights at every opportunity, stay involved in their lives, and be the best non-custodial parent you can be. The world isn't black and white and sometimes we have to make really hard decisions with the best interests of all parties involved. Don't let anyone make you feel like a bad mom if the decision you make is best for all of you.


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truefriendinme
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Posted on Mon, Aug 11, 2008 06:20

No, it's not for "alone time". But, I can see why some might think it's for that. The sole purpose of considering this is b/c I work 64hrs a week (four 16 hr shifts) when I don't have the kids, so I can be with them when they are here. With a schedule like that, Nursing school is SO out of the question. It's something I am considering. abuse of the kids is not an issue in this, our breakup was for other reasons.


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AmuseMe
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Posted on Sun, Aug 10, 2008 20:53

Can I be honest? If you have shared parenting, aren't you getting enough alone time in? I KNOW how hard single parneting is, really I do... and my children are demon spawn from hell (with angelic faces lol) but I can honestly say that there has never been a time that I have ever even considered letting them stay with their father for any length of time (but he was abusive then)... I don't think they would be better off there. None of us know enough about your or your ex's history to make any kind of helpful suggestions. Unfortunaly, you are on your own in this decision. None of us know either of you enough to make ANY kind of suggestion that you should even consider. BUT.. if your kids are happy and willing to stay with thier father for a while, while you get yourself together, and you can keep an agreement between yourselves and OUT OF THE COURTS, then I can see why you would want to make this dicision.


In your rocking-chair, by your window dreaming, shall you long, alone. In your rocking-chair, by your window, shall you dream such happiness as you may never feel. –Theodore Dreiser

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