Why does he enjoy forcing me to bite his shit sandwich, even after all this time?
My D-day was late 2011. My now XH was having an affair with a study partner, 13 years his junior, for approximately 3-4 months prior. I discovered the affair from looking at his phone after suspecting something was going on. He had been emotionally distant and I couldn’t quite figure out what was happening. I had made an effort to be more affectionate during the time he returned to college to earn his degree. We were not as close, due to him being gone for classes during the week and I had a full-time career and two kids.
The OW was, at the time, 22 years old with a 5-year-old daughter (you do the math) and on her second marriage. She had been in my house for their study groups and her daughter played with my two children. After D-day, I found out that OW and my husband had sex in my house when I was out of town for work. They were caught having sex in his car in a parking lot by city police, even though he himself is a police officer with a university police department. They met at least one time in a hotel room, although that is all he ever admitted to.
I kicked him out of our house, then found a place to rent of my own, and he moved back into the house, which was now on the market to short-sale. He had a complete emotionally breakdown, and begged, pleaded and cried for me not to divorce him and to work on our marriage. I went through every phase of The Unicorn. He swore that he cut off contact with OW. We went to counseling. He called the OW names, like an ugly whore and a rotten cancer to anything she becomes involved in.
During the unicorn year, I found out that one of the other married men in my XH’s study group, also had some sort of affair with OW a year prior to beginning one my XH. I found this out from this man’s wife, who I became friends with. I confronted XH with this information by telling him that she is indeed a whore, and he wasn’t her first target. Of course this (all narcissists being the same) privately enraged XH, who was of the belief that he was OW’s special savior stud. I later found out that he called the other husband to confirm whether or not this was true about his precious OW.
When I discovered this, I knew I couldn’t continue the marriage, and told him to move out AGAIN. It wasn’t long after the divorce was filed, and he knew I wasn’t coming back, guess who he goes back with? Yes, the OW, who was now twice divorced at the tender age of 24.
He has blameshifted so much to all of our once mutual, now my former, friends and his family to make himself appear that he was in a miserable marriage, and OW is so much better for him than me, he’s happy now and I’m just a bitter, angry ex-wife.
I have to eat the shit sandwich of OW’s daughter (now 9) and my daughter (11) being friends. Me and XH live in the same neighborhood for convenience with kid-swapping and my daughter has tried to bring OW’s daughter into my house to hang out. OW has already violated me, caused so much emotional trauma by blowing up my life and has trespassed into my house before. My XH seems enjoy flaunting their seemingly perfect, cosmic love in my face.
How do I explain to my daughter that I do not want her “friend”(though I’m sure they’ll be step-sisters soon) in my home? And that I don’t want to end up babysitting for these two bottom feeders. I’m sure it will evolve into that at some point in time, because neither have any decency or boundaries. XH is such a master manipulator, and he will always find a way to get me to bite his shit-sandwiches, while painting me as the evil ex-wife, who just “needs to move on” and “likes to live in the past.” He thinks that if enough time goes by, the way their relationship was formed will no longer matter to anyone.
I should note that I have moved on, and have been in a relationship with the same man for almost a year.
Thank you for helping me through some tough moments,
You’re not obligated to host the OW’s daughter at your home. Now, on the face of it, that might seem unfair to your daughter and to the OW’s daughter. After all, it’s not that girl’s fault her mother is a freak. They’re just two innocent kids caught up in an adult clusterfuck not of their doing. It’s not fair. Infidelity sucks donkey balls, especially to the kids.
I’m sure the Evolved and Consciously Uncoupled would tell you to suck it up and host the playdates. Break out the goldfish crackers and eat the shit sandwich. The little girl isn’t her mom, she didn’t do anything wrong, so why can’t she flop on your soft and watch “Frozen” for the umpteenth time?
Because she’s a minor, that’s why. Because there is absolutely no way a 9-year old can be in your care, without you having to contact her mother. When you assume responsibility for any child in your home, you are making arrangements with their parents — you are coordinating schedules, pick-ups, and drop-offs. If the child is hurt, you are on the front line for that child’s care. You can’t care for a minor independent of their parents.
You are completely within your rights to refuse that shit sandwich. Your daughter has other options. You’re not telling your daughter don’t play with this girl — they can do that at dad’s house or at school or at another friend’s house. You’re not telling your daughter to not be friends. You’re simply drawing one boundary — this child cannot be in your home, because that means coordinating with her mother. Your need for no contact and sanity trumps an 11-year-old’s “need” for a playdate.
How to explain this to your daughter? “I’m sorry, Sally isn’t allowed at our house. It’s nothing against Sally, but her mother. I can’t host Sally without assuming responsibility for her care.” And really, you don’t need to explain your choices to an 11-year old. You’re the adult. It’s your rule. To a kid, that might seem as arbitrary as “no pet iguanas.” Too bad, when you’re an adult, you can make the rules. While you live here, I make the rules. It’s not a democracy.
Will your daughter push back? She might indeed. It’s your boundary. Enforce it.
Will your ex and his OW/girlfriend push back? I’m sure they will. Free babysitting is hard to find. Will they talk smack about you? They’re already doing that — you hosting the kid isn’t going to change that. “Oh, we’ve been so wrong about Freebird! Did I say she was bitter and ugly and can’t let go? Well all that changed the minute she invited Sally over to watch Frozen! Now we think she’s TOPS!”
Yeah. That’s not going to happen. They already hate you, so just roll with it.
We don’t control what other people think of us, so (in Frozen parlance) “Let it go.”
Your house. Your rules. No shit sandwiches served here.