Co-parenting with my ex.

I dunno how much you're paraphrasing but this reasonable question trying to plan in advance:



To then being met with this response, immediately::


After you literally compromised the times that would work for you barring that you'd be able to switch days at work, something out of your control, following being immediately shot down with 0 other options given other than what will work for her:


is giving me fucking whiplash.
No paraphrasing. All copy/paste.
 
This feels like she cancelled your daughter's summer activities purposefully to blame it on you, and that's really obvious from the text.
Yeah. She got passive aggressive about that a couple of times on other conversations.
 
The conversation continued...

Me: "Please point out the areas in this message where I replied with defensiveness, threats, deflections or poor communication."
- Insert-
Her: "I really don't like the inconsistency and adjustment of schedules every couple of months. It is taxing on my schedule (kids schedule) and disrupts my family. I am going to have to think about this a bit more because my schedule does not just involve her and the kids have mid week activities and there is not a good day where this wont impact the rest of the kids. This also will prevent me from including her in summer activities that she has requested and I am looking into. "

Me: " the point is to allow Hailey to have more time with me. That is also something you should be accommodating for too. We all have schedules and they all need to be considered. Hailey has said she is looking forward to overnights again. I'm willing to work with you but I'd like to know you are working with me too. "
Me: "This appears to be me asking for a compromise when you have already settled on not allowing for one. I also do not appreciate these passive aggressive statements you are making suggesting that Hailey is missing out on fun because she is spending time with me."

Her: " There is no passive aggressiveness I am stating fact. I had to cancel plans that I had for Hailey as I had made vacation plans for the same week. You did not confer with me and made plans with your parents and work prior to talking to me so she was removed from those plans. As for the mid week visitations she can not do week long activities as she will now be with you every other week. Those are fact. You can not twist that into a false reality. I have stated that I will look for some other activities that may fit with her going back and forth. As for breaking out all the statements recently that are defensive, threats, deflections, and poor communication I believe that this would prove worthless as this is something that is not acknowledged or something that will never change. Thus it is not worth my time or energy. I have stated that I dislike the lack of co-parenting, that I am unhappy that I work very hard to adapt to your schedule, wants, and demands and when concerns are expressed there is no communication. At this point there is nothing more worth saying if that behavior will not change. "

Me (Pending):
"I really don't know how to move forward with you. You claim that you want to co-parent but you show absolutely no interest in doing so.
As an example let us use my request for a vacation week with Hailey. Copy and pasted directly from that thread:

"Hi Sarah,
I'm working with the hotel and my parents on a plan for a vacation week with Hailey this summer and wanted to bring you in for feedback.
I'm putting in a request for Sunday the 25th of July through Saturday the 31st (dropping off Hailey on Sunday the 1st of August).
Let me know if this week is still open for Hailey. If so I will let you know if I am approved for it."
The message very clearly gives you opportunities to provide feedback and even asks you to. It asks you if this week is still open for Hailey. It says I am requesting but have not cleared anything with work. The context of the message implying that there is time to change things if you need me to.

Why do you interpret my requests as if they are aggressive, difficult and/or threatening when they clearly are not?

I put in a request for a vacation with Hailey more than three months ahead so we could work together and find the right time. At no point have you discussed Hailey's schedule with me about anything. If this week was the one bad week this year you should have replied with "We made some plans with Hailey. She's doing _insert activity here_. Sorry about that. How would _insert other week here_ work?"
A phrase like that shows that while a certain day/or days doesn't work you are at least trying to work with me to find one that does.
In most cases where I ask for a day and it's busy you just say "We're busy". You don't suggest anything, so then I have to suggest another schedule. Then you say you're busy again, and then I have to make another suggestion. That's not co-parenting; you're just making me guess your schedule instead of just telling it to me.
It would be even better co-parenting if you'd actually tell me Hailey's schedule ahead of time. You guys went out of town for a vacation recently and the first I heard about it was from Hailey after-the-fact. You could have easily told me what the plans for Hailey was this summer when you made them, rather than me stumbling over them when I requested my week.

You don't co-parent Sarah. You make me try to guess how you want to compromise and then you claim that I'm being difficult."

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My final message there hasn't been sent yet. I don't know if its properly worded or if I should send it at all. Just getting thoughts from you folks on how I should proceed.
The woman makes me so angry. Being out of the relationship should have meant I never had to deal with these relentless gaslighting arguments from her again.
 
I don't know. Will definitely come off as accusing her etc etc. But I definitely understand...
As for vacations out of town without your knowledge - keep close tabs on those. Most states don't allow Co-parents to cross state lines without express written approval of the other Co-parent. It may have been in-state this time, which I still think is wrong, but still. She's the type to take her on a week long cruise without telling you and then saying these trips had never before been a problem so why now blah blah.
 
I can’t picture any message that wouldn’t anger her at the moment.

I’m really sorry that you’re dealing with this. You’ve given a ton of notice and are willing to accommodate. There shouldn’t be an issue this far in advance.
 
I am likely going to go with the following abridged reply instead of the one above.

Me: My request for the week of the 25th was written with clear invitations for you to provide feedback and let me know if the week worked for Hailey's schedule. If it did not you could have informed me of such, the reason why, and provided a suggestion for another week. The dates were only pending (as I stated) and could have been altered. As I had made the request 3 months in advance I felt assured that you would have already informed me of any conflicts that week.

I am confident that the judge will be able to look at all of our messages and identify you as the person being difficult and who is not co-parenting effectively.
But I still have hope that you and I will be able to work together in raising Hailey but that hope is quickly fading the more you resist compromising with me.

You can start making things better by informing me of every event/activity/class/vacation that you wish to schedule Hailey for. You are required to do so anyway, so I don't see why you have been failing to do so to this point.
This will be better than me having to guess your schedule with a request, being told no, and then having to guess again since you don't ever offer suggestions to help compromise.
 
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I am likely going to go with the following abridged reply instead of the one above.

Me: My request for the week of the 25th was written with clear invitations for you to provide feedback and let me know if the week worked for Hailey's schedule. If it did not you could have informed me of such, the reason why, and provided a suggestion for another week. The dates were only pending (as I stated) and could have been altered. As I had made the request 3 months in advance I felt assured that you would have already informed me of any conflicts that week.

I am confident that the judge will be able to look at all of our messages and identify you as the person being difficult and who is not co-parenting effectively.
But I still have hope that you and I will be able to work together in raising Hailey but that hope is quickly fading the more you resist compromising with me.

You can start making things better by informing me of every event/activity/class/vacation that you wish to schedule Hailey for. You are required to do so anyway, so I don't see why you have been failing to do so to this point.
This will be better than me having to guess your schedule with a request, being told no, and then having to guess again since you don't ever offer suggestions to help compromise.
Unless it cost you money every time you interact with your lawyer, are you sending all of this to them as it happens or financially would you need to reach a tipping point to where it would be something you'd finally just go all in? Because, dude, the more time your daughter spends under her thumb, the more likely she's gonna be screwed up unless she's old/smart enough to see through mommy's BS.
 
Unless it cost you money every time you interact with your lawyer, are you sending all of this to them as it happens or financially would you need to reach a tipping point to where it would be something you'd finally just go all in? Because, dude, the more time your daughter spends under her thumb, the more likely she's gonna be screwed up unless she's old/smart enough to see through mommy's BS.
Costs money every time I interact. I need to make it count.
My problem is I'm currently on a work schedule that doesn't give me much freedom. I work overnights so I'm sleeping during the day usually and working at night. I can't leave her here by herself so overnights with me would be limited to my weekend. And since my weekend usually doesn't involve Friday and Saturday it's not very feasible to have her over mid-week due to school. The above conversation was me trying to get mid-week overnights during the summer.
When this changes (and I'm working on getting a day schedule) and I have better living arrangements I will go back to courts for more confirmed time with her. Honestly I'd like to have 50% physical custody.
 
I've saved some money and am trying to make plans to take Hailey to Disneyland this summer while the park is on minimal operations.
My biggest fear was always asking Sarah this because well... Sarah. I would likely get a response along the lines of "It would not be okay to let Hailey go to Disneyland when her siblings can't go" or some other BS reason she uses as an excuse. Surprisingly when I asked her if this is something I could plan and maybe get some open availability on my visit hours she said "Ok".
It's not much and it still isn't a yes to a particular date, but it's something.
 
I've saved some money and am trying to make plans to take Hailey to Disneyland this summer while the park is on minimal operations.
My biggest fear was always asking Sarah this because well... Sarah. I would likely get a response along the lines of "It would not be okay to let Hailey go to Disneyland when her siblings can't go" or some other BS reason she uses as an excuse. Surprisingly when I asked her if this is something I could plan and maybe get some open availability on my visit hours she said "Ok".
It's not much and it still isn't a yes to a particular date, but it's something.
That's a good start, but I wouldn't put it past her to pull out the rug, either, sadly.

Just out of curiosity, aside from the youngest kids, are Hailey's siblings bio-dad/dads (?) in the picture? Do they at least get some special time with them?
 
That's a good start, but I wouldn't put it past her to pull out the rug, either, sadly.

Just out of curiosity, aside from the youngest kids, are Hailey's siblings bio-dad/dads (?) in the picture? Do they at least get some special time with them?
I don’t believe he is. When Sarah and I first got together she was going to court to get him limited visits, claiming he and his family were abusive. She got me to believe that about him too, despite any evidence other than her word (the kids were far too young at the time to add anything). For a while the most he got was monitored visits of two hours a week that he had to pay for since he couldnt pay child support.
Eventually those stopped too.
Sarah told me once that he heard about our divorce and was going back to court about the kids (Sarah asked me if I was working with him. I wasn’t). But so far Hailey hasn’t mentioned anything about the bio dad having visits again.
I don’t know much about him. I know he and Sarah supposedly met in a mental clinic of some kind while they were both staying there late 2000s. He seemed to love the kids but again my interaction was limited per Sarah’s preference.
She just tried very hard to replace me as the kids father.
Now I’m on the other side of that and I am questioning everything.
 
I wouldn't be surprised if she attempts to sour the trip in some kind of manipulative way. Or announces a "change of plans" at the eleventh hour.
It's possible. I'm being optimistic but cautious for now.
I had dinner with Hailey tonight. I'm not going to tell her about the trip until we get closer to it (maybe even not until the night before). So far Sarah hasn't said anything to her about it yet which is good.
One thing I thought that was interesting though is that Hailey told me tonight that they were going to Knotts Berry Farm on Tuesday. I have absolutely no idea if this was planned before I let Sarah know about Disneyland or it was as a result of. The timing is certainly odd but Hailey's been to Knotts with them before so maybe it's been something they have been wanting to do again for a while due to COVID. It may be selfish but I do hope that Hailey has her first Disneyland trip with me. They've taken her to so many places since my separation with Sarah that I was loosing hope that Disneyland would be something I could experience with her.
She loves watching the ride perspectives and behind the scene stuff with me. I know she's going to have so much fun with me either way, but that light in her eyes when she sees everything for the first time is going to be precious to me.
 
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