Dealing with the Ex and the Kids

Visitor's Question from a 21-30 year old Female
I have been separated for an year and a half after being married for seven years and have a 4 year daughter. I screwed up with him - I kicked him out because I was jealous of him. he could go out late at night while I stayed home with the baby so I thought he was cheating on me.

But any way Ive been to therapy and everything but I still have feeling for him. he doesnt know how he feels about me yet. but he wants to hang out and be friends hang out as a family, come over at night hang out with just me. and I kind of want to back off cause I have strong feelings about him still and I want time to let go.

he said you want to ruin it for your child so she can see that we get along. I just told him please I'm still in love with you, and you just want to be friends. he confuses me a lot.

I understand that we should get along of course but you have strong feelings about someone and the other one doesnt. what should I do? what should I say? Advice
You can say it was a mistake to kick him out - but a relationship is about two people supporting each other and making each other happy. A four year old daughter is not breastfeeding. Just why were you home all the time with her while your hubby was out living on the town? Why couldn't he stay home with her? I imagine you probably at least complained about this a few times before you kicked him out. Why didn't he do anything about it? Whether or not he was cheating on you, he was not respecting you and doing his part in the relationship. You deserved better.

Now you still care for him of course, and he likes you. But the fact that you called it quits on a relationship that he was enjoying quite nicely the way it was bothers him. If you guys got together you might expect him to pull his own weight. Do his fair share.

Children care about having peaceful lives, and having people around that love them. They care about this FAR more than they care about the exact details of who is with who. If they live with their grandparents, they love their grandparents. If they live with a mom, they love the mom. So to try to say "we must be in a situation where we're not comfortable for the kids" is backwards. The kids would MUCH rather both parents be in a happy situation so they are happy when they are with them.

Don't try to force anything right now. If he wants to see the child, that's fine. He can see her. You can have your own time with her. But to try to construct a "fake family" to fool the child will fool nobody. It will in fact show the kid that people act falsely and are uncomfortable when they're around each other. That's not a good lesson to learn.

Work with the therapist, work with your ex, and see what you can figure out. But in the end a relationship is about trust and communication, it is about two best friends who truly support each other. That was NOT happening before. If you both are willing to work to have it happen in the future, it'll work out. But you both have to do a better job of talking about issues and finding solutions.

-- from Jenn
One of Your Friendly Advisors at

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