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Big Improvements with Daughter

Cheatee posted 9/12/2018 14:37 PM

Thanks to all who have supported me through this difficult journey. Those who've followed my healing path know that the hardest part has been my relationship with my daughter.

Nutshell: DD (then 16) found out Mom was cheating on me. She became very troubled, got drunk, flipped a car, narrowly avoid injury to self and others, got a DWI, inpatient suicide watch... XWW lost her shit, threatened her own suicide, blaming DD to DD's face. DD then turned all her anger to me, the safe parent. XWW encouraged this anger at me, reconciliation deteriorated in divorce.

I'm happy to report that DD is doing much, much better. Not just with me, but her life in general. Despite the shitshow of her home life and her own destructive reactions, she kept up very high grades, got into a highly competitive university in NYC and got the hell out of Dodge. She's thriving up there, doing well in school, learning to be independent, loving the career opportunities ahead.

On a personal level, things have vastly improved between the two of us. She reaches out regularly, is no longer disparaging, actually accepts advice from me and is downright sweet (for a New Yorker!)

I think a couple of things changed, in addition to the healing power of time.

1) After a couple years of absorbing her anger, I pushed back a bit. Last Dec she angrily accused me of not paying for any of her college to date. I had to gently, but firmly push back, informing her that her mother had been dispersing payments from a jointly owned college fund. Further, I pointed out that I had to protect that fund for her, by restricting its use in the divorce contract to only be used for her tuition, room and board, books and fees. I didn't point out that he mother had been violating the contract by not consulting with me on specific amounts to withdraw and the uses for that funding. Daughter freaked out at my directness, but soon thereafter her angry mood from the past two years decidedly lifted.

2. As mentioned in a previous post, her Mom is now dating someone (poor guy). This likely took enormous pressure off DD to no longer have to be Mom's caretaker and lone source of life joy. She much more indifferent to this guy than she was initially to my GF, but now DD and my GF seem to have hit a good groove. My GF was extremely understanding of what my DD was going through and took none of her mis-directed anger personally.

As things hit a perma-groove with my daughter, my anger about the infidelity and the divorce dissipate a great deal.

I still have a fair amount of PTSD from the destruction of my family of 20+ years and that is manifest in work stress, relationship worries (unfounded worries, but hey...) and a penchant to assume nefarious motives too easily. But, the relief of seeing such great progress in the biggest hole in my heart is absolutely wonderful.

Thanks to all of you who provided love, support and reassurance during my struggles with my daughter.

Chrysalis123 posted 9/12/2018 15:48 PM

Thank you for sharing. I am so happy for your daughter and for you. Suffering through an angry alienation and shunning by a child is its own special horrible hell.

My hopes are the worst days are now behind you and you will enjoy many, many decades of a lovely relationship with her.

Phoenix1 posted 9/12/2018 16:20 PM

What a wonderful update! I hope the future continues on its upward trend for you and DD!

gardenparty posted 9/12/2018 16:28 PM

This is wonderful and I hope your relationship with DD continues to deepen and grow.

Unhinged posted 9/12/2018 17:33 PM

Well, this was a nice post to have read. I know it's taken a long time to get there, but I figured she'd come around eventually. You're a good man, father and friend.

Keep on healing, brother.

ETA: I feel bad for your XWW's next victim, too.

[This message edited by Unhinged at 5:36 PM, September 12th, 2018 (Wednesday)]

Skan posted 9/12/2018 17:58 PM

This is a great post to hear. You stayed on the path and didn't stray, and now it seems like you're reaping the justly earned rewards. Well Done!

BearlyBreathing posted 9/12/2018 21:06 PM

:-). This made me happy. As your daughter further matures it will get even better. Teenage girls can be pretty volatile in the best of times. I am so glad this has improved so much. You are clearly an exceptional father.

Cheatee posted 9/13/2018 08:01 AM

Thanks folks!

This forum has been a real life saver for me. I can't thank y'all enough for the support, empathy and encouragement you've provided.

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