Thursday, May 14, 2009

These Stupid Games

Posted by Mrs. Mess (cross-posted at This Blessed Mess)

What you are doing is not fair. I know - life is not fair - but what you are doing is just offensive to me as a mother and as a woman and it’s plain wrong.

I married you when I was a silly little girl - just doing what I was told - but divorcing you filled me with a furious need to never be ’silly’ again. To never be disregarded or ignored or insignificant again. I have long since nullified my resentment of you because I am not sure I would like a person that hadn’t learned all those lessons you taught me. All the strength that leaving you brought me - the bull-headed determination that still stamps itself on my face when someone tells me that I can’t do something, or raises a hand to me, or dares to act as if I am ‘insignificant’.

But your absence from our son was never excused. Make no mistake; I have never, and will never, speak ill of you to him, but I will never lie to him, either. I waited and waited for you to start being his father. I knew that Washington had nothing left for me - but I stayed - just in case you would decide to be in his life. I put my world on hold and I did not move on or do anything for myself because I never ever wanted to give you another excuse for why you just couldn’t make him significant enough. I waited for 8 years for you to make just one move closer to him. One. And you didn’t. I all but begged you - no, I did beg you to be in his life - and you simply said ‘no’.

So I left. I left because while I was busy trying to force you to not make my son feel insignificant and unimportant - your behavior began to highlight that fact and make it throb. So I took him and we left to find a better life. And we did. We found a wonderful life filled with love and compassion and family and no one ever feels left out or small. He has brothers and sisters and a man in his life that would never hurt him or his mom. And he was healing. I know that no amount of a mothers love can ever fill up the hole that being abandoned by a father leaves - but he was healing, and the wounds that you left became only bruises and they didn’t bleed like they did when you simply said ‘no’.

And then, lo and behold, because you just can’t just let people heal, you showed back up. Talking about video games and cars and all the things that a boys his age think dads talk about. With no explanation of why your face was not familiar to him or why your voice did not sound like home to him. With no reasoning or apology or anything to explain why you refused to exist for so long - nothing but expensive electronics and promises of a car when he turns 16 and BAM! You are a hero - you can do no wrong.

My son is caring and loving and considerate - but when he comes home from your house, he is mean. My son would never hurt his mom’s feelings - he knows what struggles we went through -he remembers . But when he comes home from your house he makes fun or our life - he belittles our home and he tries to makes it seem insignificant. That is not ok.

And now - you think he belongs to you. Now you think that all if takes is your money and your lawyer and you big words and you can just take him away. You think that it’s ‘your turn’. You think that you can just make demands on me and my family and we have to just lie down -like before- and that you’ll get whatever you want because you are ‘the man’ and what you say goes but you are wrong in so many ways.

I will fight with you. I will play your stupid game. I will go to court and I will break your ‘rules’. I say whatever I need to say and I won’t smile pretty this time. Did your brother ever find out all those things you told his wife? Did your mom ever find out why you really spent that time in jail when we were married? How about your wife - is she aware of your how you feel about other men? Or does she just ignore that - like I wouldn’t?

I will fight you for my son and he will stay with me. And no, I will not be covering ‘all the costs’ you incurred because I moved out-of-state. I simply say ‘no’. And if you want to play dirty and remind me that life is not fair - then I will do that too. I am not above hitting below the belt - and you should know that, going in.

My son will not be insignificant or unimportant- and you are not allowed to use him to try to alleviate your insignificance and unimportance. I raised him. I cried for him when he hurt and held him when he cried for you. I answered the hard questions and none of them ever had anything to do when an X-Box or an IPod. I built my whole world around him not hurting - so you are not allowed to come in and try to push it all over.

You are not important. You are not significant. You are not a dad- you are just another struggle that he will remember having to go through - I know that, because I know you - and I know you can’t endure anything that is real - and you will disappear again. And I know that you will blame it on me for fighting with you- and that’s ok too.

Just go - I’ll play your stupid game, and I’ll pick up all the pieces and put him back together, I always do, just go.


Unknown said...

An eloquent post. Succinct. Matter of fact. Honest.

Hayley said...


I love this post. That entire first paragraph is me, exactly. The rest- not yet. We'll see.

Kick his @$$!

Lise said...

Wishing you. . .well, I was going to say wishing you courage and strength, but you already have those. Wishing all the best for you and your son.

Mr Lady said...

Oh, honey. I'm so sorry.

How old is he? My nephew went through something very similar; his father went as far as kidnapping him for a short while. He saw the light on his own. I hope the same for your son, and I have no doubt you've shown him enough love and humanity that he'll know it's absent when the time comes.

Hugs to you, dear.

Liza said...

Oh Mrs Mess, your son is lucky and blessed to have you. Someday, someday he'll see through all his dad's shit. Sending you thoughts of on-going courage and kick-ass mentality. Kick the ass, take the names, and protect what is yours.

Kat said...

Girl, I hope you win. Fucking men.


It takes more than a few minutes of sex to be a dad, and believe me, this novelty of your ex'es will wear thin real soon. You'd be surprised how intuned children become to a person's true nature when they hit their mid teens.
In the mean time, pull out evey dark humiliating or abusive tale you can from DAY ONE and document it. And DON'T be afraid to bear all in court. This is YOUR child you are fighting for. It doesn't have to be fair. Just honest!
Good luck!

ewe are here said...

This post makes me ill.

The very thought that a long absentee, uncaring, disinterested 'father' thinks he has the right to just show up YEARS later bearing expensive gifts and a corrupting attitude. What an incredibly selfish, self-centered man ... I really hope your son sees him for what he truly is soon, before he hurts the people who have ALWAYS been there for him.

Stephanie N. said...

Mrs. Mess, you are awesome. You are brave and strong, and a GOOD MOM. My mom went through something similar with my younger brother (different dads). Now he barely speaks to his dad, but it took a long time for him to see through his manipulation.

Kick this so-called dad's arse, good mama Mess! I'm cheering for you from the sidelines.

maggie, dammit said...

Sending much continued strength your way, mama tiger.

Tarasview said...

Thank-you for fighting for your son. You are a wonderful mother for that and your son WILL recognize that someday if he doesn't already. My dad was a complete *ss too and my beautiful mom protected me and I went through a phase as a young teen where I desperately wanted my dad to show up and be DAD. He didn't. I healed and I am so grateful for the amazing mom I have.
Praying for your family today.

Anonymous said...


Please, just win. My dad was one of these dads, and it fucked me up.

So win.

Anonymous said...

This is such a sad part of life.

Beth said...

Sending you good wishes and all the strong mommy vibes I can muster (though you have plenty on your own!).

And this battle? You've already won in so many ways. You've planted the seeds in your son to be the good man he will become. No matter how he asks post-visits with the sperm donor (will not call him dad), his heart belongs to you. Kids are smart and kids know when they're really loved.

God go with you on this difficult journey.

Anonymous said...

Go kick some ass, and know that there are people in this world, some who know and love you, and some who have no idea who you are, that are rooting for you!

Anonymous said...

please fight - and win. I went through the same thing with my daughter and ex-husband. Exact. Same. Thing. Except now she won't talk to me or see me. She listened to his lies, and for all I know still does, even after he tossed her out of his house. She'll be 19 next week.

Please don't let this happen to you. I have a hole in my heart that will never heal, and it's ripped my life and marriage apart.