A little reassurance needed

October 10, 2008

I picked my kids up for the weekend this evening and was met with a request that in all honesty I should have seen coming. They want me to themselves this weekend; no visits to girlfriend’s house, no going out with girlfriend, or anyone else for that matter, just me and them. I think this is a request with different aspects; partly I think they were a little bored last time they came to stay as girlfriend’s sister and boyfriend were about to emigrate to New Zealand and so we needed some adult time to say our goodbyes (put that down to unfortunate timing more than anything else) but there is also a growing realisation that daddy does have a girlfriend and they’re thinking through the consequences of that, not least that this means that daddy and mummy will not get back together. Their next question is does daddy love his girlfriend more than us.

This weekend is about them starting to understand that daddy will always love them but that daddy’s girlfriend is important too. It’s about reassuring them and having some fun but also gently explaining that they don’t have a blanket exclusivity. The emotions of 2 small boys need to be handled carefully but there are other people’s emotions to take into consideration too. It’s a complicated dynamic and there is a careful line to tread; another example of how being a weekend dad means trying to find a balance and hoping you somehow get it right.

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