Thursdays and What’s in a Name Anyhow?

Every other Thursday around 7pm the house feels huge…and quiet…and empty.
My kids have just left for the week (though not the whole week, I’ll see them Monday and Wednesday evening).
Sometimes I’m grateful for the quiet and the alone time but sometimes the week goes by too quickly and Thursday sneaks up on me. These Thursdays leave me feeling a little sad, a little lonely. They make me wish I had more friends or at least more single, available friends. They make me wonder if I should start trying my hand at dating soon (Eee gads, I’m not even sure how I would go about doing that!).
This time it was one of those Thursdays. My kids and I were sitting around the dinner table last night and it occurred to me that I had no idea what would be for dinner the next evening. I tend to plan the week’s dinners out on Sunday or Monday and I knew I had planned enough for this week but couldn’t for the life of me remember what I planned to make the next day. Later I realized it was Wednesday; I don’t make dinner every other Thursday, The kids leave at six.
Dammit, Thursday, why you gotta creep up on me like that? I wasn’t ready for you.

So I’m sitting here eating cheese and drinking beer, listening to Billy Joel alone in the semi dark reflecting on the week that just passed (and reminding myself that I need to run tomorrow if I’m going to keep at the beer and cheese like this).
It was a busy week but normal busy. We watched What About Bob Friday night, the first of what I’m calling Friday Nights with Bill Murray. The kids loved it; it was fun. A couple of my kids and I did a run Sunday morning, also fun.
There was one thing about this week that stands out to me though, something my kids told me about.
I don’t remember how the conversations started but it was Sunday evening and we were returning the movie on the way home from the 4-H meeting. My daughter said something about the youngest referring to me by my first name instead of mom. I responded with some vague question about the context of this. She told me their dad was calling me Grace instead of mom.
“Well was he talking to another adult about me or something?” I asked.
She said no, that it had just been he and the kids in the car at the time. She then went on to inform me that he had been doing this lately, calling me by my first name when talking to them, our children, about me.
What the fuck?!? (in my head only of course)
Oh…that’s weird. (out loud)
She agreed and mentioned that maybe it had something to do with him wanting them to call their New Step Mom mom.
Um, yeah, probably. (Again, in my head)

I told my daughter that if she wasn’t comfortable calling New Step Mom mom she should say something to her dad. I also suggested she could talk to her counselor about how to handle this (at which she dramatically rolled her eyes).
Obviously he’s trying to change the way our children think of me. To me this is so wrong; I’m their mom and he’s their dad. No matter how we feel about each other or who else we each have in our own lives we are still both very important to our children.  Irreplaceable even. But this all doesn’t surprise me considering he has indicated to me that he thinks I’m obsolete when the kids are with him. They have New Step Mom why would they need me (Old Real Mom)?
But, seriously,
is it just me or is this a bit of a douche bag move?
Obviously I’m not happy about it but what’s in a name anyhow?

 

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About nights7

A metamorphosis in progress...always.

10 thoughts on “Thursdays and What’s in a Name Anyhow?

  1. As an outside observer, it’s a really manipulative thing to do. It’s good that you can talk to your children about this… is there any way you can talk to him? Your kids love you and it sounds like you have a great relationship with them, so they’ll always know you’re they’re mom, you shouldn’t worry about that. If your daughter can talk to her counsellor about it though then she might have a way to bring it up with him too.

    Stupid games people play. Hang on in there. Being honest and loving and straightforward with your kids (and consistent) will always win in the end. A mom like you is for life. Your children know that.

    And can you plan something for your thursdays? Join something—a group— or decide to make something and then blog about it? (Just so you’re forced into it at the start). Getting some ‘me’ time when you don’t want it actually sucks as much as never having it (my boyfriend works away a lot – I have a lot of weekends alone) but if you can force yourself to do something with it just to get into it, it does help.

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    • nights7 says:

      It is a very manipulative thing to do and is also typical of him. I’m glad my daughter felt comfortable telling me about this. Dealing with your parents’ divorce has got to be hard enough without this type of behavior.
      Planning something set on those Thursdays is a good idea. I’ve been wanting to do some sewing for myself but never seem to find the time. I’ll have to try “scheduling” that.
      Thanks for the encouragement.

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  2. Vince says:

    “..he thinks I’m obsolete when the kids are with him.”
    Wow, what a hell of a thing for him to say or even think. I’ve thought about what I will refer to my stbx as when talking about her with the kids. I’ve always said, “your mom or mother.” To me that seems appropriate. I’ve also changed her name in my phone to “kids’ mom.” That’s what she is to me.
    I have yet to experience days alone in the home. She moves out the end of this month then we will begin the shared parenting times. I’ve thought about it as being peaceful but the thing is I want to be around my kids daily, not just PT. It’s going to be rough I think but it is what it is.

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    • nights7 says:

      The road to divorce has not been a pleasant one and I had, and still have, hopes that things will be easier between he & I now that it’s done. I always refer to him as “your dad” and wouldn’t think of doing otherwise no matter what he calls me. My kids are not dumb and will see through his crap sooner or later.
      It is pretty tough not seeing your kids every day. Having an empty house is a weird thing too. It gets a little less weird with time though.

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