Collaborate without boundaries

May 30, 2018

  • Comments 5

Not much happened yesterday but I did have a few thoughts on my mind. I picked up the girls and I did everything I could to make sure we were busy the entire three hours so no conversation would come up about my wife. It's becoming harder and harder to just act like nothing is wrong when everything is wrong. I see it but I can't talk about it with them because they are children and don't need the burden. So I take the burden and spill it out here and try my best to leave it at the foot of the cross. So I have these thoughts that are just thoughts. I write them here and hope to bury them here.

One of my thoughts went back to a couple days ago. Caleb had asked me to use a gift card he has to get him something at McDonalds. I pulled into the driveway after I got his food and something made me break out into tears. I don't remember if it was a song on the radio or something else but I sat there just crying my eyes out. Then, all of a sudden, he came out the front door to get his food. I didn't expect it because he never does that. I wiped my tears away as fast as I could but I'm sure he saw me and I'm sure it affected him. He didn't say anything and probably never will but I just have a feeling that it's something he will not forget and that moment, although not by my intention, will make him move closer to me and further from his mom. I thought about this because I just started the next book on my list, Divorce Casualties Protecting Your Children from Parental Alienation by Douglas Darnall, Ph.D. as advised by my therapist. I think parental alienation is impossible to avoid in these circumstances. The kids are going to hear and see things that will push them one way or the other. It's the nature of the [divorce] beast. All I can do is minimize this as much as possible, but that weak moment in the car was something I didn't intend and I don't think I had any control over it.

Another thought was about something Becca told me a couple days ago. She said that when she was at our other house Allison told her she is not allowed to come there because she lives with me. I'm not sure why Allison, who is five, would say something like that but Becca said she is afraid my wife now thinks that I am telling the kids something to make them think like that. I'm not and I hope my wife doesn't actually think I am. Besides telling the kids that my wife has the power to end this, I haven't said anything negative at all. Looking back, after starting in this new book, I realize that even that statement is harmful to the children. It places all the blame on my wife. She has, in the court papers, accused me of manipulating the kids against her so I can see her thinking I am behind Allison's words, although I am not. This book I am reading is like a horror book. Parental alienation is impossible to avoid because kids see it in your body language (like Caleb catching me crying.) I have absolutely no intention of doing anything like this to our children but they see me suffering. How can I stop that? In my mind, how can I not blame my wife for this? I have confessed my sins. I have offered everything to my wife to fix our marriage but she refuses it all for her own selfish desires. I can't say any of this to our children but it's what I think in my mind. It's my reality.

My third though of the day is concerning something else Becca said. Yesterday she told me she feels uncomfortable at church. So I'm assuming that's why she doesn't want to go with me. She said it's uncomfortable because she doesn't know what to say when people ask her how she is doing. Or how her mom is doing. She said she just doesn't want to deal with it. I told her I understand because I have a hard time dealing with it too. I told her when people ask me those things I just tell them I'm doing as good as I can and I don't know how my wife is doing. I tell the truth. What I was thinking when I told her that was very different. I am angry at my wife for putting us in this situation. My wife doesn't hear any of this because she doesn't want to. She doesn't feel any of this because she's unaware. She doesn't care about any of this because it doesn't serve her own desires. She won't talk to the kids about it and she just assumes there is no collateral damage to her decision. She assumes the kids are doing just fine. I have no idea how to do damage control. If I walk away and make everything look like my fault maybe the kids would be better off. Seeing two parents go through this is devastating, not only for them but for me and my wife.

Finally I heard a song that hit me square in the heart. The lyrics say "I've been a little lonely lately I can't sleep in this bed I remember every night we spent And, oh, I'm hearing every word you told me It's stuck in my head All your promises were broken in the end." It's from the Escape the Fate song "Broken Heart." The part that got to me was "sleeping in this bed." When I got my rental house my wife bought a new bed and told me I could have our bed. But, I sleep on my couch every night because I just can't sleep in that bed. I don't even think I could sleep in any bed. Maybe I don't want to be comfortable. I don't know. All I know is it just doesn't feel right sleeping in bed.

None of this feels right but I guess it's like the Israelites leaving Egypt. There was an easier, shorter way but God led them the long way around because He had to show them He was God. It took 40 years of desert wandering for them to see that.

  • I know it is hard but try to remember to believe the best. You can be very harsh sounding when talking about your wife. Remember she is doing what she thinks is best for all concerned.

    I have the same problem, it’s not just you, God calls us to love differently than most people think and that sets us apart. I am determined to let god live his life out through me, by his holy spirit, and pray constantly that he will give me people to share my love for Jesus with. This is my desire, not easy, but my goal for God in my life, and I know his for mine also.

  • It does help to put our thoughts down here.  

    As far as caleb seeing you cry, I bet it will be a moment that he won't forget.  I bet it had an impact. Maybe you should say something  about it.  Not making it a long talk, but just bring it up. so he knows you are okay.  Maybe you could say sometimes even adults feel powerful emotions that make our  eyes water.  And sometimes these emotions are good  emotions.  such as when you think of  how much you love him, your wife, and all your  family.  Or when thinking of how much God loves us.  

    YOu don't have to lie, or really tell the specifics of  why you were crying.  

    But, maybe just find a way to lighten the load of what he may be thinking when he saw you.

    Just a thought.

  • People ask those questions to us and our kids.  How are you?  How is everything going?  Some do it for gossip reasons.  Some out of curiosity.  some out of concern.  but they can put us in a position that can be awkward.  Maybe we can use the moment to be a witness to Christ.  By just saying when I remember God is on my side everything is going great.  Or however we each feel comfortable phrasing our words.

  • Bu it is tough with the kids  being asked.  Could you keep her by your side at church and kind of answer for her when people ask her how she's doing?  Or deflect the question if it's pointed at her?

  • It is tough to share testimony of standing and not make our spouse look bad.  

    It's crazy how kids can say things that  are not true, yet they aren't intentionally lying or manipulating things.  One  time  my father in law and I  took our 3 or 4 year old to an event we thought he would like.  There were a lot of people.  When we got back he blurted out to my wife and mother in law, Dad and grandpa were looking or talking to girls.  I have no clue why he would say that yet alone think that  or come up with that.  It came out definitely sounding like we were flirting.  And I would never have done that.  Nor would my faither in law.  And even more so would we not have done that in front of each other.  So, who knows where kids come up with these things.

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