February 14, 2017 at 5:25 pm #127625
I am a 52 year soon to be divorced guy with a beautiful 10 year old daughter. Her and I are in different states and its really tough being away from her. Her mom is engaged to a guy and my daughter says hes really nice guy. Tonight I was video chatting with my kid .. she was opening the Valentines Day package I sent her and her moms new beau was there. This is the first time I have been exposed to this and it really hurt. Just the fact that another guy is there with my kid .. it felt like I was being replaced. Now I know thats not the case at all. My daughter loves me very much and shes tells me often that no one will ever replace her Daddy. But it still hurt and I am a long way from her and getting back up North is just not an option financially right now. I am in recovery and I have a therapist and I go to a support group 3 times a week and I share about this stuff… but tonight really kicked me in the gut and I needed to get it out…I am missing this kid grow up and its just killing me. No matter how much I talk about it ..it still sucks and I want it to stop hurting….thanks for letting me spew here…February 14, 2017 at 5:45 pm #127631
I read your pain in the lines you typed here. Question and a concern: you wrote that your daughter “tells me often that no one will replace her Daddy”- does this mean you told your daughter that you are concerned about being replaced and she often tries to comfort you, ease your distress about being replaced?
anitaFebruary 14, 2017 at 5:54 pm #127633
I I only brought it up once..by saying please don’t forget about meme. I probably shouldn’t have said it but I did. I never in my life thought I would be that guy who left.February 14, 2017 at 6:05 pm #127639
Your pain, please do not make it her responsibility- make sure you don’t burden your daughter with it. Process it in therapy, in your support groups, even here, if it helps, only not with her. She told you repeatedly that you will not be replaced because she knows it is your concern. Discipline the expressions of your pain when you communicate with her, as difficult as it is. Allow her to like that other guy, so she doesn’t feel guilty that she does, if she does.
I know how it is to say goodbye to a child- heart breaking. But keep her well being in mind, as your first priority. If she knows that you love her, via phone calls, mail; if she knows you truly love her, and if her mother is a good-enough mother, she will be okay.
What are you recovering from, if you’d like to share…?
anitaFebruary 14, 2017 at 6:24 pm #127643
Thanks. I’m OK with her liking him. I’m glad she’s happy and I don’t bring any of that up when we talk..our conversations are pretty normal..she has a good mom too. So for what it is .it’s not bad. I just miss my kid. I’m recovering from alcohol. Thanks for your feedback…I really appreciate it.February 14, 2017 at 6:34 pm #127647
Take comfort in that your daughter has a good mother. What comfort it is! Can you imagine if that was not the case, how unbearably painful that would have been, to imagine your daughter in bad hands while you are away? As painful as your separation from your daughter, it is not a complete separation… take comfort in regularly contacting her, hearing her voice, talking with her.
And then, there is some pain that you will have to endure. This pain will not kill you, you can bear it. Endure it without panicking, without rushing to relieve this pain any-which-way. Once you know that you can endure it and not escalate it into bad decisions and dysfunction, you will experience relief.
I think the reason it didn’t help that much talking and talking about it as you did is because you still resist this pain. You still say to yourself (not with words): “I don’t want to feel this pain! I don’t want to!”
Don’t resist it; don’t try to run away from it- accept it because it is not going away. Surprisingly, from my experience, there is relief in that acceptance.
anitaFebruary 15, 2017 at 1:20 am #127669
Thanks. I’m not sure I understand about not feeling the pain. But I understand the rest. I am grateful. I have accepted these facts you speak of. But it still hurts.February 15, 2017 at 9:01 am #127715
You are welcome. Regarding my point about the pain you are feeling: what I suggested is not that you don’t feel it but that you live with that pain best you can. There is part of us that panics when we feel pain, wanting desperately for the pain to stop. That part drives some people to alcohol and other drugs; it drives other people to many other behaviors which cause additional problems.
To endure the pain means to feel it without resorting to “solutions” that cause additional problems; it means to feel it, knowing you can and will survive it, and so, you are likely to behave responsibly while you feel it. When you don’t add problems, the pain will diminish over time.
anitaFebruary 18, 2017 at 10:11 pm #128283
You are her dad and always will be. Nobody can override that. Other men who come into her life will be a mere candle in the sunshine. She can love them or enjoy being around them, but they will never be DAD.
I know how it is. You can read my story on here as well. For me what made it very hard was that the other man was the affair partner.
But you know what, I know my son loves me with all his heart.
Sometimes when you arent around your kid and cant see them, or hear them, you think maybe they arent thinking of you, or have forgotten about you. That isnt the case at all. You have 10 years over this new person, she cant forget that. When she talks about him just think of it like how she would talk about a teacher or mentor, a person she gets along with who seems to have her best interest at heart, but not dad!
Do all you can and try to work on accepting the things you cant control and control the things you can, like the time you do have with your daughter.