Hi everyone - I appreciate all of the feedback. I wanted to give an update to see if it changed anyone’s thoughts on anything.
We finally had a very long talk on Friday - about five hours worth. It actually started with him saying he didn’t think we should see each other anymore. That we had been talking about this same topic over and over (kids) and just not finding resolution.
The change came when I said I would bring his few belongings down to him, I’d like to say goodbye to him - he’s my friend and I want to wish him well, I’m not angry, etc. Then as we were pausing to consider when that would happen he said, “So, we are breaking up because you want to be neighbors with your daughter.”. Then that opened the door for the discussion about what I DID want on that topic - an hour or less, and that was agreeable to him without much discussion - he seemed to mostly feel I was taking into consideration where his son was living, etc.
Next topic was parents and son he hasn’t spoken with. Cleared up a miscommunication - either he gave the wrong date or I heard it incorrectly, but his son has not reached out to him since 2019, and that was a very nasty, abusive text that I was already aware of, and was in agreement that G5 should not engage. Talked about his parents and learned some things that confirmed my suspicions that they are toxic. So, his parents and one son, toxic and understandably no contact.
Topic of G5 and my kids. G5 said he does not dislike my son, but feels like early interactions were not ideal and set up a bad feeling. He frequently references early on when all three of my kids sat down with us and had a list of questions for him, and that made him uncomfortable. Questions were along the lines of “What are your intentions with our mom?” Kind of thing. He is unable to accept they were just kids worried about their mom, and were not intending to make him uncomfortable.
G5 has conceded that we will be at events where my ex is there, and that he will be there and will be civil.
He interestingly said “I guess my tough guy exterior has sent thr wrong message about how I feel about grandkids.”. He said he actually gets along with kids really well, and is ok with grandkids coming over to visit whenever.
I was really pleased with all of these things.
It was noted repeatedly that a lot of issues came about because of lack of communication from both sides.
One issue that remained was our kids meeting one another. He feels that his son is going to be uncomfortable in the situation of meeting my kids. I straight up aid he was insulting all of our kids, and he cited his early interactions with my kids that I noted above. I said all I wanted was for him to ask his son about it, and he aid that if his son knows I want him to come, that he will do it regardless (what a concept!).
He came up on saturday per usual and all was good until he was about to leave on Sunday. He asked if he was going to get a text from me when he got home telling him there is “something else”. I said I was just having some sort of uncomfortable feeling, and that one thing I thought about in regards to his son that perhaps he could just ask if he wanted to meet them sometime without mentioning me at all. I got a “You just can’t leave it alone, can you” type response. I said I was just thinking about ways to avoid his son feeling obligated to meet my kids if he didn’t want to.
This conversation went around and around for awhile. I heard often “I don’t ask you to do anything. I literally let you do whatever you want, but this one time you don’t get what you want, it’s a big deal.”. I asked what other topics he felt this way about and he did not provide any examples. Eventually it was “is there anything else? When are the requests going to stop? I don’t ask you for anything. I just want to know.”.
So - this is problematic for me, because it is reinforcing the feeling I am already struggling with that I can’t talk to him about things. I pointed out that he ASKED ME if there was anything else I wanted to talk about. If I had said no but then brought this up a few weeks later, I would have been in trouble for not telling him yesterday. I’m in a no-win situation on that topic.
An incident from the past that has remained a point of contention is a Christmas celebration with my family that he backed out of at the last minute because he had been traveling for work all week and wanted to stay home in his jammies and watch tv, rest, do laundry, etc. I told him I felt like he was rejecting my family. He asked if how he was feeling matters at all. I said yes it does, but I feel like he knew he wasn’t going to go, but waited until the last minute to tell me. I also pointed out that I would have gone, because my family is my priority. Idk. I have mixed feelings about that incident as he really, truly was having a terrible time at work traveling every single week, etc and this event would have been a 2.5 hour drive each way. (I would have driven)
When he left I texted him and aid I was sorry we had that convo as he was leaving. I said what each of us wants is neither right nor wrong, but we need to decide if this can work for us. I suggested we both take some time to think about it, and plan for a constructive conversation.
Ok, on your mark, get set, GO! I’m listening.