I am new to the group. I am a 46 yr old father of 2 girls (12 and 22) and have been separated for a little bit more than one year.
I have been looking for a place to connect with others who might be in my situation but strange enough, I was not able to find many divorce help groups. The once that I found were mostly to help women struggling with abusive relations, so I hope I am in the right place.
My ex and I got married 22 years ago when we got pregnant with our oldest daughter. After my business failed 4 years ago, we ended up in therapy (again). The therapist told us that her goal was to either help us be happy ever after or to separate. My ex left on the third session. I continued to go to therapy and eventually made the decision that I was never going to grow old with her.
I have learned and grown a lot but the divorce has been the worst experience of my life. After a very difficult process, we ended up in mediation to decide my youngest daughter’s custody and she lives 50/50 with both of us. My little one has adjusted well and is thriving.
My oldest daughter is a very different story. She is graduating from university (With Honours) in one month and has been away from home pretty much through the whole ordeal. I have been a parent to her and my ex has been her friend. I drove her to parties, talk to her when she needed advice, supported her through her university years, help her with problems, I pretty much raised her. I was the parent and my ex was her friend. Five years ago, when my daughter was still in high school, she drank too much and ended up staying at her boyfriend’s house when she had told us she was staying with her girl friend from high school. We found out and I drove to pick her up. Once we got home, I spoke to her about the dangers of what had happened. My ex never even mentioned it to her…
I was VERY close to her but she has taken my ex side and it hurts A LOT. The separation process took over 1 year. I did not leave my ex, we both agree it was the best thing for everyone. I never cheeted, abused her or did anything that can be called demeaning.
She helped my ex pack and move last year but she left me pack alone when I moved. She sees my ex, supports her and comes to her house. In the 15 months we been separated, my oldest girl has been with my ex many, many times alone with many long weekends. She has been with me only 5 days and when she is at my place, you can see that she can’t wait to leave. I am in pain. I have talked to her and she tells me she will talk about it when she is ready (but she never is). At the beginning, she said it was her schedule, by now its obvious and she does not even reply to my emails or phone calls.
I told me ex to talk to her so my girl and I can fix whatever is on her mind, but my ex said she was not getting involved. Again, she is nor a parent she is her friend... She never helps my daughter grow or improve.
Any advice would be much appreciated…