I have a son with my ex-husband. I was the one that wanted out of the marriage. This hurt him, and he swore to me that he’d destroy me and being friends would never be an option. I’ll give him this; consistency is his strong suit. As is following through on his promises. It’s been 5 years and he has never passed up an opportunity to take me back to court, to try to prove I’m a bad parent, to argue how much child support he/I should/shouldn’t have to pay, the list goes on and on. I waived all monetary help, just in case it was about the money for him.
In his defense, I have made some really bad decisions financially and romantically 4 & 5 years ago, and yes, it has hurt our son. However, in the last 3 years, I have done anything and everything to make up for it, accept responsibility and improve myself. It’s enough for all of the powers that be, but him. I have done an immense amount of work on myself. Therapy, meditation, books, journaling, having mentors, positive friendships, restoring broken relationships, getting strong and healthy and confident. My life has truly, miraculously shifted. I have gone to my ex and asked him via email and in person what it is he needs from me that would allow there to be peace. I have said I would do whatever it takes. I have asked for his forgiveness and named everything that I know he holds resentment for, and even other things that I have felt convicted in my heart of. I have accepted responsibility without blaming anyone but myself. I have said that it all is my fault. I take it all! I have said I want to know what else I can do to ‘pay’ for what he feels I’ve done wrong so that he can feel like justice has been served and healing can begin. I do this and feel this genuinely because I will do whatever it takes so that our son will not continue to be affected by this negative energy.
I have clarified that I am not asking for enmeshment or a lack of boundaries, for us to be friends or anything that feels unsafe or ‘too close.’ I mean healing in the sense that the past can be let go, that it doesn’t keep being brought up, that he wouldn’t feel a need to engage me in legal battles for him to have more custody of our son, and that he just allow equal time to be the status quo and be at peace. He refuses, answering emails with his long list of every wrong I’ve ever done, what he doesn’t feel I’m doing right, and why I don’t deserve to have my son for equal time. He also brings up how his wife (yes he’s been married for 4 years and even has a year old child from this marriage) is my son’s real mother and how she should have every right I do and how she is a better mother than me in his opinion. My son believes he is the ethnicity of his stepmother because he has been told he is, and that she is his ‘real’ mommy, because that is what his dad tells him. I’m horrified that he’s doing this to a 7-year-old child.
He’s accused me of being mentally ill, of having ‘something’ wrong with me (since before we were married), and at my own expense I have had second, third and fourth opinions and every test, workup, chemical run-down/blood test/levels run, psychiatric evaluation, etc. and no issues are found and all assessments concur: No mental health issues. I have done this continuously over the last 5 years so that he cannot accuse me of having out-of-date assessments.
Now, I don’t mean to paint myself as the good guy. Make no mistake, those evaluations and therapy sessions did reveal I have my issues, namely a great deal of co-dependency and some trauma bonds that have been formed and I’m working to resolve those. I obviously wasn’t making wise or healthy choices 4 and 5 years ago. And I don’t want to paint myself as the victim, because I created that situation. However, it’s been 3 years of consistency, good and positivity on my part. But no good is acknowledged by him. I get hateful emails with the laundry list of everything I’ve done wrong and how I don’t deserve anything good in my life. I’ve tried being really kind and conversational, I’ve tried baking cookies, buying gifts for their baby, having my son make them gifts, I’ve tried being silent, respectfully distant, submissive, warm, enthusiastic, positive, assertive, proactive, cut and dried, business-only, compassionate, begging, I don’t know what else I can do. I’ve tried everything I think might communicate respect and care/love to he and his wife. Our son loves to be with me, he is happy and begs his dad for more time with me. I encourage and welcome them to be present any time they’d like to, so that our son can revel in the happiness that he can be in the presence of everyone he loves at the same time. Nothing improves on his end. He never passes up an opportunity (at least weekly) to communicate his disdain for me. Even in writing this, I know that if he read it he’d say, “Oh you brought all of this on yourself.”
Three years ago, I started following Gabby Bernstein and reading A Course In Miracles and meditating, and then I found TDL and the changes have been amazing inside my heart and mind. I have peace regardless of the situation or circumstance. I have people who care about me (but also weren’t impressed with my choices 4 & 5 years ago) who now support me and marvel at the changes in me. But regardless of how I feel, regardless of others’ opinions, I know I must be needing to do something differently.
So my question is this – I’m doing the work, I’m holding myself to the flame of purification, I have accountability and a therapist and good friends who are brutally honest with me, I’m meditating, I realize he is me, I extend love and light, I do cord cutting meditation, I do bridge meditations, I have imagined scenarios that are peaceful, loving, void of malice, neutral. I feel it when I imagine it, I hold the feeling… Over 3 years it’s been a steady process which has accumulated to having had radical shifts in perception regarding him, my son, this situation, my whole life, the whole Uni-verse. I love my life, save for this. I’ve tried letting it go for the past 2 years, not focusing on the negative. However, I must be doing something wrong. I am obviously blocking this in some way. I am obviously creating this in some way. What is it? My son is suffering in the process and it’s yucky all over. I don’t want this for my ex, for my son, for his family, or for me. I’m open to any and all advice. Please.
A TDL Reader