On love, loss, placating and jealousy

September 6, 2007

“Love may be blind but jealousy has 20-20 vision” – author unknown

Hi, Kids. My heart is sad today, so I thought I’d write about it here and hopefully take the sadness from my heart and put it into the computer.

LJ’s mom says she’s decided that since LJ is unhappy when he comes home to her that perhaps he shouldn’t spend time with us anymore.

For the record, I think LJ’s mom is probably Borderline.

She also says she thinks he may be autistic. As someone whose best friend has a daughter who actually is autistic, I think that LJ’s mom may be mistaking sadness and anger for autism.

When he was on the phone last month crying because he didn’t want to go home to her, my heart broke. Not because he was sad. He’s been telling me for six months that he doesn’t want to go home. I’ve been coping with that sadness for a while.

I was sad because of the way she spoke to him when he told her he wanted to stay.

How can we be so insensitive and disrespectful to our children?

Don’t answer that. I think I have a pretty good idea.

I want to tell her that she’s hurting her son. I want her to see that there are better ways of relating to people than the ways she chooses. I want. I want. I want.

There we go with that wanting again.

*Deep breath*

We’ve come a long way, but we still have a long way to go, and sometimes I get very, very tired.

LJ’s mom can’t keep us from seeing him, but she can make it difficult, and she is: not returning phone calls, refusing to okay a date to fly there and see him, telling Jon that she wants to go back to the original court-ordered agreement put together when he was a baby, which was two days a month with Jon because they were never married, never lived together and in short, didn’t know each other.

In a nutshell, her particular brand of crazy is wearing me out, folks.

Filing a contempt of court is stressful and a pain, not to mention costs money, and I’m hoping that she and Jon can work it through because my peace-making skills are tapped at the moment, and I’m needing to regroup.

If you think of it, would you send up a good thought for Jon and LJ? That anyone would try (and has tried) to keep them separated is a tragedy, for my husband, but even more so for this little boy who just wants to be with his dad.



  1. I’m so sorry, Ang.

    How much of this is the ex wanting punish Jon for somehow “making” LJ prefer being with you two rather than her? Do you think she’s really misreading her son, or is this just more of her anger at his father?

  2. Thanks for caring, Jim. It means a lot. I think that she’s just repeating a pattern in her life (she’s 41), which basically tries to grab and hold anyone in her life that wants to leave.

    I know that she’s still angry because she felt abandoned (her words) after Jon ended their four-week-old relationship nearly five years ago. I also think she’s jealous because LJ loves Jon and enjoys being with us.

    I can’t speak to the autistic traits because I’m not a doctor so don’t want to say, “Oh, she’s dismissing her son’s emotions and wants by saying he’s autistic” only to find out later that he is indeed mildly autistic. I’ve eaten my words enough to want to wait and see how it plays out.

    But it speaks to a deeper disrespect for people (her son, in particular) that distresses me.

    I’m trying to learn that my distress is my problem, though, and this is just another opportunity to learn, I guess. 😦 I did like it when life was simpler, even though it’s richer now. I miss the simplicity. I look forward to having that again. Thanks again for caring. To specifically answer your questions, in case I hadn’t: I think she’s consciously or subconsciously trying to punish them both. Jon for not wanting to stay with her and LJ for not wanting to come home. 😦

  3. This is sad, especially for a child who seems to be crying out for a loving, stable environment.
    It sounds like you and Jon are able to provide that for him when he is there.
    I wish the best for you all.

  4. My heart aches for you all – especially for that precious little boy. To truly love a child is to want what is best for them – and to be able to recognize what that entails. How can a parent be so blind?
    (I’m in the process of learning this myself – that the hurt one person causes has such a ripple effect…)
    Stay strong.

  5. Ang, do you think there’s any reasoning with her?

    Or do you have to wait her out till she comes back around on her punish-and-reward cycle, much like a husband who hits a wife one day and bring flowers the next?

  6. Every day at work is a story just like yours. I am so sorry you have to deal with this kind of crazy and that poor sweet boy needs to have his innocence robbed at such an early age because of it. I’m sending warm thoughts your family’s way. I hope she (LJ’s mom)gets some sense knocked into her very soon. She is not seeing how great of a situation she and her son have, instead, she is angry and controlling. She sucks.

  7. Poor LJ. I feel so bad for him. I hope the situation improves.

  8. My heart goes out to you all. My ex is a borderline and there is nothing you can do to find rationality in the behaviors. It can be scary, as I well know. I am sorry for the boy, and for the rest of you, but I know you can prevail as the person you are.

  9. Hi ACG ~ Thanks for caring. It really means so much to be able to get this stuff off my chest. (Thanks, Jim!) We are not perfect parents by any stretch, but our kids are pretty happy when they’re with us (except when they’re in trouble or not getting their way). It’s hard to hear either one of them say that they’re having trouble with the other parent, but such is life, and we just do our best, knowing that they don’t always love us unconditionally either. (Some things just shouldn’t happen, though, all that being said.) Thanks again.

    Thanks so much, Beth. I wouldn’t wish this on anyone really, and that ripple effect you mention is real, and strong. I also hope in my heart of hearts that it leads us all to a better place of love and strength. That may be being overly optimistic, but I have a couple of friends and family members who have gone through similar things and not only lived to tell about it but are pretty amazing people in their own right. That’s my hope for my kids, especially LJ.

    Ah, Jim ~ *heavy sigh* Some of the best advice I ever received was from a former boss of mine, and it was: “Angela, you can’t reason with unreasonable people.” Her hurt and anger and jealousy are so deep, I don’t even know where to begin. Appealing to her better self has worked better in the past, but the instant she feels threatened she flips. That punishment/ reward cycle you talk about is definitely applicable here. I’ve never heard anyone apologize so much in my whole life put together. (I’m not sure if that’s a good thing or a bad thing.) 😉

    Heya, Pool ~ Thanks for the support. If you have to deal with stories like this everyday, I’m sure I don’t know how you do it. I’m gathering a posse at work to go down and shake her. It probably won’t work, but I may feel better after the shaking. (That’s bad, I know.) Yes, angry, controlling and unfortunately, horribly jealous. Her theory that Jon didn’t marry her because he wasn’t the marrying kind was kind of blown when he married me. It’s easier for her when she makes us into the bad guys, and while we’re not perfect, I think we have a good family and do our best to love and respect our kids. I wish she could acknowledge her feelings so that she could let them go. That’s what I wish.

  10. Thanks, Diesel. He’s really a sweet kid and deserves a good life with a mother who listens to and respects him, you know? She got angry on the phone tonight (but thank god she called!) because when Jon told him, “You know you can call me . . . ” his response was “I don’t feel good, Daddy.” She accused Jon of I can’t even remember what now, but something along the lines of trying to manipulate him into believing he doesn’t feel well. She just doesn’t listen, and it’s frustrating. But we’ll get through. We’ve made it this far. Thanks for the good wishes.

    Hi Ian ~ I am sorry to hear that you had to go through anything like this (and probably much more if you were actually living with her). I can’t even imagine. I am far too much in need of peace for that. Thank you for your kindness. I think this is one of those “this too shall pass” challenges that hopefully will only make us all stronger and more loving in the long run. Keep your fingers crossed for us, though. xoxoxo

  11. I have very close friends with a very similar problem and it makes me so sad!

    Good luck with the negotiations!

  12. Ressepie ~ Thanks so much for visiting and for the sympathy. I know in my heart that she doesn’t *want* to be that way, but it’s hard to keep trying to connect with such a hurtful person. Best wishes with your friends’ situation, too. If anything, it’s given me a deeper understanding and compassion for what other people are going through. Thanks!

  13. A very cute photograph.

  14. Thanks, Orhan!

  15. This is so tough, and of course I’m sending many good thoughts their (and your) way. Hang in there.

  16. Thanks, CS. We’ve learned that it’s kind of like surfing and that it’s better just to relax and try to navigate the wave, even when it’s frightening. It’s teaching us patience and compassion and how to deal with difficult people, which I don’t think we had ever experienced the way we’re experiencing now. The fruits are all good — it’s just the work that it takes to get there that’s hard. If we weren’t such big babies, I’m sure it would be easier. 😉

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