We sometimes hear from single moms—and dads—whose kids have meltdowns after being with the other parent. Does this sound familiar to you, too?
So, when this single mom wrote to us about a worrisome co-parenting dilemma, we thought you might chime in. Here’s the situation: This single mom has a three-year-old daughter who has had overnight parenting time with her dad since she was six weeks old. Her ex was physically and emotionally abusive when they were married, although (fortunately), he has shown no signs of abuse towards their daughter.
However, this mom worries that her ex is not actually taking care of their daughter during this weekends. She explains: “My little one is a sleep deprived wreck when she returns. I can’t even pee alone. She cries and has nightmares for a night or two.”
Usually her daughter is glad to see Daddy—at least, at first. Lately, this single mom has detected some obvious ambivalence in her little girl about seeing and speaking to Daddy. Recently her daughter has begun to ask a difficult question: “Why do I have to go see Daddy?” *Sigh*
Not surprisingly, this single mom struggles with how to answer this question. She tells her daughter that Daddy wants to see her. And the judge said he could. She tries to explain how this situation is out of her hands. Trying to remain positive and upbeat, she tries to convince her daughter that she’ll have fun at Daddy’s house.
After all, this single mom asks (groan): “Isn’t watching TV all day and all night fun?”
Do your kids ask this particular “Daddy” question?
If so, how do you respond?
Originally published on SingleMommyhood.com