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is it normal separation anxiety or something wrong?


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  #1  
June 20th, 2010, 09:04 PM
nikki52687's Avatar Super Mommy
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 685
My dd is 26 months old. Her father has been in and out all her life, but she never really had a problem going with him. Then in jan we had another court hearing and he got every sun and mon for 10 weeks.It went well, she got excited about going and everything. Then in april, he got 5 weeks with one overnight visit and then it would move to every other weekend for 2 nights and one night on the off week. She had never spent the night away from me and I have been a WAHM, so she was always with me, so I was really worried. They said it went fine though, and she seemed ok.

Then one week she said she had been upset and cried and he just put her in the room and didn't lay with her at night, (which is what I do). After that she got a little uneasy about going, but never put up much of a fight, she would just say, "no night night daddy bruce, i home mommy night night" but then she would go just fine. Until last weekend, she freaked out, cried, held on to me screaming "mommy hold me, mommy hold me" it was terrible, he put her in the carseat and she reached for me yelling and kicking until they were out of my sight. Then when i called to talk to her the next night, she started crying, "i see mommy" and got really upset and then he told me she always gets upset when I call, he never mentioned it before.

(she calls him daddy bruce because she started calling my fiance daddy several months ago when bruce wasnt around, so i called him daddy bruce so she knew the differen, whole nother argument!)

Then today, i told her I had to pack her diaper bag because she was gonna go with daddy bruce, and she got upset right away. I then told her all kinds of fun stuff, and people she was gonna see, (like I always do), normally it gets her excited, she just kept saying, "no i stay with mommy, no daddy bruce". So, i gave her a snack and said she could take it to nannies house, because he lives with his mom. It kinda worked and i got her in the car, and half way there she said, "i go home mommy?" so i explained again where she was going. She got upset again. Then we pulled in, and she freaked out, cried, "hold me mommy, no daddy bruces" all the way up the drive way. And then she threw her arms around my neck and cried, "no mommy no mommy" over and over again, after a couple minutes he told her to come to him and she did, but still crying and looking at me with those eyes, you know the ones that say, "why mommy". Then I kissed her and he turned and they walked away, she didn't look back.

It is so traumatizing for me I cant even imagine what it is doing to her. I can hold it together until i leave and then I am falling apart, it is SO hard. I don't know how to help her understand. I don't know if I can keep doing this, but I don't have a choice, it is a court order and the judge is always on his side, seriously no matter what.

Please help me, I am falling apart. I just can't handle putting my baby through that. She is going to experience hurt and fear soon enough, why put them through this so early, she is supposed to feel safe and secure and I can't do that, and they don't do that.

Thanks for reading, my question turned into a serious vent,
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Our TTC journey: I went off the pill April 10, 2010. I have had irregular cycles ever since. We have tried everything from soy isoflavones, fertili tea, fertil aid for both, sperm count and motility boost for DH, femera, relaxing, giving up...no luck. SA 06/2011-5mil, 05/2012-no live sperm, 07/2012-17mil!! HSG 7/25/12, all clear. Next cycle, Femara 3-7, scan cd 11, 5 follies 17, 12, 12, 11, 10, trigger cd 12, IUI (8/30/12) cd14: BFN, AF showed 9/13/12 -On to cycle 2 with medication and IUI. 9/28 quit groqing, cycle cancelled. 2/6/13 follistim cd 3-12, follies 19, 18, 17, 12, count 1.7 mil, BFN. Skipping this cycle.

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  #2  
June 22nd, 2010, 06:56 PM
Daisyfields's Avatar Platinum Super Mega Mommy
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It's normal if they see that the parent is uncomfy w/ things. You are obviously attached to her (normal & not a bad thing), but as a result, she sees that you aren't feeling cozy w/ the idea & she is reacting off of that.

The fact that he didn't lay w/ her at bedtime doesn't make him a bad father, it makes him unique as a parent. Not every parent is going to do that (I wouldnt'), but there are some that do. And for those that do, it works for them, and those that don't well...same results. If your expecations is for bio-dad to be exactly like you & if he doesn't deliver exactly like you, the child is going to be upset b/c she will see that you're not happy. KWIM?

As far as the child not wanting to go to her bio-dad's house. That is also normal for a few reasons, a child generally doesn't want to go away from their "real" home to stay at home #2, but that doesn't mean that she should call the shots & not go. It's important for the child to be w/ her father. Even if she has a wonderful bond w/ your SO, the fact that she's calling him daddy, well...as long as you are clear to your ex about what's going on & why, and he's okay w/ that, then there are no reasons to change it. If however, bio-dad is not happy & is very involved in her life, there is no reason for her to call your SO "daddy"...since she already has a daddy. In some cases, when the bio-dad is not involved & the child has been around the step-father (or boyfriend) for a long time, it's normal for a child to view that person as their father & it comes naturally to call them dad. On the flip, you can have a situation like mine in that my DS doesn't feel right calling my DH his "father" and it's not a natural thing for them, which is also okay.

Basically, in the end, you need to allow her to be w/ her dad. Even if he does things differently (and that's okay, he's not you & will not be just like you), that's okay. Unless he was putting her health and safety at risk, there are no reasons to be worried, or concerned to the point that you're feeling sick to your stomach w/ worry. Again, she will feed that energy from you & act out in her own way since she doesn't have the vocabulary to articulate how your personal feelings, vibes, are causing her to second guess her bio-dad. Which is really what is going on in the end.

Not sure if this has helped, I truly hope it does. I 100% understand what it's like to watch your baby go to another home, not knowing what is going on over there, wondering WHY things aren't being done the way YOU want them done & see your child and just want to protect them and make sure it's done under your supervision. I was once very much like you. I have stopped in general, partially b/c my son is approaching 10 now & talks to me about his feelings & it's helpful. The only time(s) I call & check on him is to make sure his Rx's have been taken & that he's had a good day/game, etc. Other than that, his routine at his dad's house, eating, bedtime, all that jazz, I don't get involved b/c it's another home, and they have their own rules which I allow b/c if I show that I don't trust my ex's judgment on rules it's going to make our son disrespect & challenge his dad's judgment or rules as well. I had to take a giant leap back & give him that space. There are other factors in there that still to this day make me feel not great about my DS going there but it's another story & too painful to discuss here on the JM boards for me but in the end, I do keep in contact w/ my DS when he's at dad's house & we talk a lot, which is reassuring to me, he is honest & kids are brutally honest. There's no hiding or lying b/c my son will sing like a canary, even if he doesn't realize that he's doing it, it's natural for a child to "share" things, even if it wasn't intended to be shared.

Hopefully in due time, things will come easier for you & you will be able to have your daughter transition from your home to your ex's home w/ out any internal anxieties.

HIH

(((HUGS)))
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  #3  
June 23rd, 2010, 06:13 PM
AndyBee's Avatar Super Mommy
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You know, I think you have every reason to be concerned. Especially, since she didn't have this reaction to begin with. With DSD, she initially threw fits and screamed "No, no see Mommy" all the time. It was horrible. But it's gotten better. The fact that your daughter seems to have developed this, seems a bit odd to me. It never hurts to ask your doc at your next appointment. We plan to bring up a few issues ourselves, just because we don't know what type of behavior is normal for a kiddo her age.

As for the "Daddy" and "Daddy Bruce" I say, keep it the way you want. When she grows up a bit more, she will decide what she wants to call both of them. There is no reason she shouldn't call your fiance Daddy, since he is a father figure to her. As long as both she and he are comfortable, that is all that matters. You may find that later on she wants to call him something entirely different. That is fine too. I understand Bruce's feelings towards this, but he also needs to accept the fact that this other man is part of his daughter's life. Perhaps the clarification of Daddy Bruce, could be tweaked to his liking. Afterall, kids have multiple grandma and grandpas and understand completely which you are refering to.

Again, I think your feelings are valid. That doesn't mean I think something is going on. However, any change in your child's behavior should be monitored. Even if it's just to learn how they are growing and developing. I applaud you for keeping your cool while she is around. I know it must be hard to watch your little one struggle. You're doing a great job holding back infront of her.

Take care, and keep in mind there is nothing wrong with watching out for your child.
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  #4  
June 23rd, 2010, 07:56 PM
ToonTownGirl's Avatar Super Mommy
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Well, IMHO, it's typical for children to act like this. My DSD is 2.5, and for the longest time, DF would go to pick her up and she would SCREAM for her mother. And I don't mean cry, I mean SCREAM, to the point she would be turning herself almost blue. She would be put in her car seat, and by the time we were at the end of the street, she was FINE. Yes, she's attached to you, she spends most of her time with you. It's to be expected for her to upset that she's leaving you.

DSD's bio-monster was freaking out at DF because of this. "You don't spend enough time with her, blah, blah, blah" Well maybe if she let DF spend more time with her, these things might not have happened. But we don't know that for sure.

Now DSD gets in the van, and she's still a little quiet, but no more screaming, and no more crying. She doesn't talk to her mom while she is with us. She's gone from Friday night to Sunday night. Her bio-monster never calls, and she doesn't even ask to talk to her mom. She knows now that she's with Daddy, and it's her time with him.

It is something that she will get used to. As for the whole laying down with her thing, I'm sorry, but IMHO I don't agree with that. Bio-monster would do that too, and we won't. She had a soother too (and in my opinion, if you can walk, you don't need a soother) and we wouldn't let her go to bed with it. And she would send her to bed with a bottle. Nope, sorry that's a choking hazard IMHO, and it wouldn't happen here. Bio-monster got ticked off, but how we parent here is different than what is done in her house.

Everyone is different, but like Chantelle said, you have to let her see her father. There is no getting around it. How does he feel knowing that his daughter is calling another man "daddy"? I know that it has tried to happen with DSD AND DSS, having to call other men "daddy" and DF went through the roof. He is their ONE and ONLY DADDY, no one else. But that's just us....

Best of luck to you in all of this, and I hope that your DD gets a routine in place, and starts to settle down for her own sake.
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Last edited by ToonTownGirl; June 23rd, 2010 at 07:58 PM. Reason: spelling mistake
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  #5  
June 24th, 2010, 10:56 AM
Daisyfields's Avatar Platinum Super Mega Mommy
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To add to this... it's so important for both parents to be big parts of a child's life, even if they don't love each other (if they did, they wouldn't be an ex, right?) and even hate one another. You do it for the child(ren), you do it for peace in the situations & you have to remember that this child didn't ask for any of this back & forth stuff (as any of our kids didn't), and it's difficult for them, they are trying to adjust from one environment to another & expected to do this w/ out conflict or confusion. Little kids THRIVE on routine, and when their routine's are disturbed, it's hard. They go to the non-custodial parent's house, and they are expected to do things differently & be happy etc., by the time the child gets comfy w/ the environment, it's time to go back to the custodial parent's house, again, bringing that adjustment into your home. It's hard for us parents to watch our kids adjust, it's hard to watch them beg to stay home, but unless there is a safety issue, you don't allow the child to say "I don't want to go there" or "I want to go home" or cry to the point that you feel the need to keep them at the home. That is a way to control the parent(s) & no child should have that power, ever. You have to establish the rules, both at your home & his, and allow him to parent her as he does (which is never going to be like you, ever), and not question or challenge, especially in front of the child(ren), b/c if they see that you two are divided, in any way, that again, becomes a big factor for the child(ren) to control the parents on both ends.

Do I agree w/ everything my ex does, or how he parents or what he feeds our son? No. But that doesn't mean that he's a bad father. Heck, I disagree w/ my DH 90% of the time, his approach is so different than mine w/ the kids that it's like night & day. But again, I try to tell my DH that we need to "agree to disagree" in front of the kids but if we want to talk further about something we do it w/ out the kids around. At least I try any ways, doesn't always happen but I try. My kids do look at my DH as the pushover, they walk all over him & then when he tries my approach, he doesn't understand why it doesn't work. The kids laugh at him pretty much & then he gets mad & yells & scares the kids. Not b/c he wants to scare them, but he gets annoyed that they're not listening to him & then freaks out. I tell him "they see that you're a push over"...which is why when I say "NO" in my house, it means "NO"...but for the kids, when DH says "NO", it means, keep bugging dad until he caves & says "YES"...

So I could pick this apart for hours but ultimately, the child has to be w/ both parents, it's important. HIH
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  #6  
June 24th, 2010, 01:43 PM
AndyBee's Avatar Super Mommy
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Wow, I don't know if we are reading two seperate posts or what. Where did she ever state that she wasn't going to allow the father to be part of the child's life? As far as I could read, it seems that she is concerned by her daughter's reaction, but she has still continued to take her daughter to the father.

Quite frankly, I'm appauled at this forum. I expected a more loving, accepting, and helpful group. Instead, I have found a judgemental and harsh community. Not what I expected from Just Mommies.

Nikki, I hope you are able to find peace and work things out.
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  #7  
June 24th, 2010, 08:39 PM
ToonTownGirl's Avatar Super Mommy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AndyBee View Post
Wow, I don't know if we are reading two seperate posts or what. Where did she ever state that she wasn't going to allow the father to be part of the child's life? As far as I could read, it seems that she is concerned by her daughter's reaction, but she has still continued to take her daughter to the father.

Quite frankly, I'm appauled at this forum. I expected a more loving, accepting, and helpful group. Instead, I have found a judgemental and harsh community. Not what I expected from Just Mommies.

Nikki, I hope you are able to find peace and work things out.
I'm sorry that you feel this way. But IMHO, this is a group that is extremely loving, accepting and HELPFUL. She asked for opinions, and that's what she got. There are a lot of things that each of us doesn't agree with, and we will comment that way. It doesn't mean that we aren't loving, accepting or helpful.

She states "I don't know if I can keep doing this, but I don't have a choice, it is a court order and the judge is always on his side, seriously no matter what." So if she did HAVE the choice, she WOULD stop taking her daughter. From what I read from this, is that her "hands are tied" and she is "forced" to take her daughter there. And I'm sorry, but my DF would LOVE to find this judge that is on his side no matter what. That NEVER happens. Trust me, my DF is an AMAZING father, but because he has the wrong parts, he gets shafted in regards to seeing his kids.

I completely understand her being concerned for her daughter, I get that. Just because my 2 step kids didn't come from my womb doesn't mean that I'm not concerned about them. I love them like they were their own. Her DD is 26 months old. It's a phase that they go through. And she needs to be strong for her daughter, and things will get better. Like I said, my DSD did the EXACT same thing. And now she's great.

Again, I'm sorry that you feel that way, but I love this board and the outpouring of support that I have gotten from the ladies in here has been nothing but fantastic. I don't know what I would do without them. Truthfully, it's nice to know that there are other women out here in my same shoes. I'm truly grateful for the friendships that I have made here.

I hope that you stay and get to know the ladies here, but ultimately that is your decision. You are very welcome to stay, in my opinion.
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  #8  
June 25th, 2010, 07:37 AM
Daisyfields's Avatar Platinum Super Mega Mommy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ToonTownGirl View Post
I'm sorry that you feel this way. But IMHO, this is a group that is extremely loving, accepting and HELPFUL. She asked for opinions, and that's what she got. There are a lot of things that each of us doesn't agree with, and we will comment that way. It doesn't mean that we aren't loving, accepting or helpful.

She states "I don't know if I can keep doing this, but I don't have a choice, it is a court order and the judge is always on his side, seriously no matter what." So if she did HAVE the choice, she WOULD stop taking her daughter. From what I read from this, is that her "hands are tied" and she is "forced" to take her daughter there. And I'm sorry, but my DF would LOVE to find this judge that is on his side no matter what. That NEVER happens. Trust me, my DF is an AMAZING father, but because he has the wrong parts, he gets shafted in regards to seeing his kids.

I completely understand her being concerned for her daughter, I get that. Just because my 2 step kids didn't come from my womb doesn't mean that I'm not concerned about them. I love them like they were their own. Her DD is 26 months old. It's a phase that they go through. And she needs to be strong for her daughter, and things will get better. Like I said, my DSD did the EXACT same thing. And now she's great.

Again, I'm sorry that you feel that way, but I love this board and the outpouring of support that I have gotten from the ladies in here has been nothing but fantastic. I don't know what I would do without them. Truthfully, it's nice to know that there are other women out here in my same shoes. I'm truly grateful for the friendships that I have made here.

I hope that you stay and get to know the ladies here, but ultimately that is your decision. You are very welcome to stay, in my opinion.
I don't feel that we've been unhelpful or unsupportive in our replies, we're explaining how things can be ordinary etc., giving support & I haven't seen something unnecessary. Perhaps it's the way some interpret it but I've never posted a reply to be off-putting.

As Tiffany pointed out, she mentioned that if a judge didn't make her go, she wouldn't but her hands were tied. Unless we're speaking dissimilar languages, that means, that if the judgment were hers, she'd keep the child home. That's where the part of keeping the kid in the father's life...UNLESS...there is an question w/ safety, and thus far, I haven't seen anything about danger that she's described.

We've explained how when a parent is uneasy themselves about ANY position, not even just supervision, the children feed off of that. They see "mom" or "dad" is nervous, so they think they should be too. They won't say that audibly but they feel it & react to it. Again, another clarification about trying to "let go" and allow the dad to parent, and just b/c he's not doing things exactly like mom (in most cases mama is the one who knows it all, but not all cases), doesn't mean that they don't get to see the child. Even if the child is crying about staying home, unless there is a legitimate reason for seeing fear in a child's eyes, and I mean, terror in the sense that something isn't right, the separation apprehension is 100% normal, even in a good position and the mom/dad's aren't having issues. It's just how kids are.

With that said, as one of the hosts on here, I 100% disagree w/ the ladies being non-supportive. We're all here for the same issues, how we got here will differ & how we react will differ, but ultimately, it's all about the kids, period. Not how a parent doesn't like an ex b/c they just don't, or how they don't feel cozy about allowing the child to see their non-custodial parents, it's not like that. I have also been in this situation. Didn't feel "cozy", and sometimes today, still don't, but that doesn't make me try to figure out how I can keep my son home & not go there. He (DS) will sometimes cry & try to stay home, even at almost 10, but in the end, I always do what is best for him, and I do not allow ANY of my kids to call the shots & make the decisions. Which is why things are good on my end. However, in my DH's end, his ex-wife, allows their son (my DSS) to call the shots, and as a result, we don't see him, ever. He doesn't know his siblings & step-mother, and barely sees hid bio-dad who loves & misses him very much. And all b/c the custodial/bio-mom is not "comfortable" w/ "us"...but I know she means "me"... and that's her own issues, but to keep a child from their family, father & siblings, b/c she isn't my biggest fan, is self-centered. I'm not saying that Nikki is like that or trying to be that way. I'm giving examples of situations that can come off in this direction. I never said that Nikki was trying to be in charge of the situation or being ugly w/ her daughter, not at all. I think she's nervous, and is sad that her daughter is crying & wanting to stay home. As mom's, we don't want to see our babies cry, and when we do, we want to nurture & make everything better. So when we see our kids upset, it's only natural to go into the "MAMA MODE" in how we want to see what is wrong, b/c something MUST be wrong otherwise our kids wouldn't cry, right? Wrong. Kids will cry, because of frustration, and they don't have the vocabulary to articulate what they are truly trying to say. They end up crying, some get mad, some lash out, hit, bite, whatever the act, the child is acting out b/c they want to let someone know that this isn't what they like or want. Sometimes those "cries" are a red-flag & obviously it's different, but just b/c a child is crying, doesn't mean that something bad is happening. My DSS would come to our home & call his grandparents/mother & cry to them. Then we'd get grilled on "what's going on?" b/c something horrible MUST be going on for him to be upset. Meanwhile, there was nothing going on, he wasn't being abused, starved or treated badly, he was not happy about being in our home, didn't want to share w/ siblings, and felt the need to get out any way he could. He hated our rules, and more so, thought of me as a "bad" person, b/c mama painted a nasty picture of me to him. He didn't trust or respect me b/c of it too.

Bottom line. I've BTDT in the moment & seen the results from it all, good, bad & the ugly.

For that I make no apologies in my responses, and if I ever did hurt somebody's feelings, I can reassure you that my intentions were not to make that person(s) upset. I speak from my heart, the truth, honest and sometimes it can take people by surprise, I can be sarcastic and that can come off to some as strong but I don't apologize for being the person that I am, I'm not here to bring anybody down, I'm here to help. As the rest of the ladies are.
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