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BW is bad mouthing me to the kids

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JanaGreen posted 6/11/2021 09:38 AM

This post feels . . off. I would like to hear the BW version of events.

I whole-heartedly agree with Bluer's statement that we are not our ex's PR agents. I wonder what precipitated this conversation. Children and narcissists speak in absolutes, and the way this is written feels like a ploy to make the ex-wife sound like a total villain. Sus.

josiep posted 6/12/2021 19:58 PM

In your place, I would admit to your daughter that you understand why Mommy has a hard time believing Daddy. Tell her that Mommy doesn't trust you because you did something wrong and lied about it. It was a grownup thing, so all she needs to know is that you did it, and you lied about it, a bunch of times. Now you're sorry, and you know better, but that doesn't fix the hurt and distrust. It will be a long time before Mommy feels like she can believe Daddy, and that's understandable. BUT Daddy found out that lying really hurts people, and he doesn't ever ever ever want to do that anymore, so he will work hard to be someone that people can trust. DD can always trust Daddy, and that's ok. Mommy doesn't trust Daddy, and right now, that's ok, too. Sad, but ok. Mommy is hurting, and DD doesn't have to fix that. Daddy is hurting, but he will absolutely be ok. It's not her job to defend either one of you to each other. She can just love both of you and let the grownups figure it out for themselves.

BraveSirRobin

I think this might be one of the very best things I've ever read here on S.I.

josiep posted 6/12/2021 20:02 PM

Missing from the story is what led to Mom referring to Dad as a liar. And that could change the way we view it.

Did Dad tell 6yo that Mom was going to let her eat ice cream for dinner and when Mom said, "No, you can't have ice cream for dinner" and the 6yo responded with "But Dad told me you were," I can quite understand where Mom would lose it and call him a liar. Is OP setting up these scenarios to make BW look bad or seem crazy?

I don't know but I certainly believe OP should do some introspection.

And I so hope and pray that the BW gets appropriate counseling so she can heal. Because is she is calling Dad a liar inappropriately, it's likely due to the pain she's still in.

HellFire posted 6/12/2021 20:12 PM

It sounds to me as if she was triggered. The kids probably know that mom and dad are divorcing. Maybe the child asked why,and mom told her an age appropriate truth..because daddy lied to her.

This woman that he talks badly of, his wife, found out her husband had reignited his affair with the OW. He didn't confess. She found the messages. If she is still angry, she has reason to be.

She is the one wanting the divorce. She might be able to heal, once he is no longer in her presence.

josiep posted 6/14/2021 08:13 AM

I went back and read some of your posts in other threads and wanted to add to what I'd written before.

I'm actually quite happy to read that you've been in counseling and are actively working on becoming a better person. I think the world would be such a better place if EVERYONE tried to do better today than they did yesterday and I appreciate that you're doing it.

So if you want to hear my take on all this, read on. I'm no expert, so take what you like and leave the rest.

At this point in your situation, your wife is in bad shape. Is she going to counseling? If so, I hope it's with someone who understands infidelity and trauma. Helping her to heal will help the whole family.

If you've agreed on the financial terms, I'd suggest you give in on the custody part but have the right of first refusal when the kids need overnight care. Then just let everything happen but be kind, be generous, be remorseful, admit to the kids that it's your fault and that you're very sorry and that you promise to never let them down again. And then, just do it and let time perform it's magic. Right now, she can't trust you. Not because you're not trustworthy but because she isn't able to trust anyone. I guess what I'm saying is, Be part of her solution, not part of her problem.

And whatever you do, don't even mention her to your kids unless it's in the most generic way - did Mom go to the store? That sort of thing. They'll form their opinions and judgement about both of you based on their own experiences. Just be kind, offer to help when you can see it's needed, proactively take out the trash, etc. without bringing attention to the fact that you're doing it. IOW, do it without any expectations of praise or thanks. Humble pie to the nth degree. That is designed to help her feel safe and to help her not get her hackles up at the sight of you, which is probably the case right now but that doesn't have to be permanent.

I played games pretty much non-stop during the last year of my marriage and for 2-3 years after the divorce, although mine were the match the dot type, not what real gamers play. My mind was mush, my brain was paralyzed and I could do little else. So perhaps be a little more understanding of her foibles right now and refrain from criticizing her, even in your mind.

And, last but not least, spend some time reading the Just Found Out forum. Pick a couple of the really long threads. It'll help you realize the level of pain caused by infidelity. My pain is no longer making my stomach flip all day everyday but after 4 yrs., I still don't care if I wake up tomorrow morning. This pain is real and it's really, really hard to get past. Granted, I was much older and had been married for 45 yrs. so it totally knocked my socks off. But you're younger and there's hope for you and your family. And I hope you realize that it's that hope that has caused me to sit here and type all this.

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