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How do I gently tell my grown daughter that I do not want to spend Thanksgiving with my ex husband of 25+ years? She invited me first to spend with her and her family. Then called and left a message that she wants to also have her dad there and would I "mind if the two visits overlap by a day so we can all have a nice Thanksgiving dinner together". I do not want to spend ANY time with the man who made my life miserable for so long. I understand what she wants and why, but if she knew the details she wouldn't be so quick to want to throw us together. I need some advice on how to handle the situation.
More background information: Her dad cheated on me, belittled me, destroyed any self confidence I had. When I became pregnant with my daughter he said "So, are you going to keep IT"? It. And now that he is a recovering alcoholic who burned through all of his retirement (he is only 60 but hasn't worked in 10 years except at menial jobs) he all of a sudden is the "prodigal father". He left after the divorce. Our kids were 6 and 10. I raised them to adulthood. If I wanted more child support (while he is off vacationing in the Bahamas and playing blackjack at $25 a hand) he would threaten to call Children's Services and say I was sexually abusing them. He knew I would never put my kids through that. But of course, all his two kids see is the loving "pop pop" to the grandkids. I know him better than that. He is broke, basically homeless, counting on them for plane tickets to visit and plays the perfect grandpa. Because my daughter and her husband are successful....and he sees them as a MEAL TICKET. He has them all snowed. But not me.