It’s not easy co-parenting with someone who is difficult to communicate with and whose parenting strategy is so different. Conner doesn’t see his father often, but when he does, it’s usually in the midst of some huge family get together or special event. So, there have been those knife-in-the-gut times that I’m sure all divorced parents have or fear having when Conner has come home and said, “Well, maybe I want to go live with Dad!” (This is usually upon arriving back at our house to realize that realities like homework, chores, bedtimes, and technology limitations exist here as they always have.)
It doesn’t feel great to hear, “Maybe I’ll go live with Dad.” But, I’ve been divorced a long time. I’ve also been a kid. So, I know things like that are coming and I just have to always prepare myself to be patient and firm–but also empathetic and willing to listen. The husband and I never bad-mouth Conner’s father, and we understand that there’s always going to be that transition period when Conner arrives back home. It’s not our favorite thing, but it’s the right thing because it’s not Conner’s fault his parents chose to get divorced. We always tell ourselves that one day Conner will appreciate the stability and structure of his home with us. And, we cross our fingers that we’re right!
Conner’s father and I haven’t been together since he was three months old, and Conner’s turning 13 next month. The past week has been the first time Conner has spent a stretch of time at his dad’s without anything “special” going on. Last night, he arrived on our doorstep (early) because, “I just wanted to come home.”
Long story short, it felt really good to see Conner flop down on the couch and say, “It’s so good to be home!” I’ll have to remember that moment the next time he’s telling us he’d rather go live with his dad. 😉