Need input on an email to husband's ex

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by Shari, Sep 8, 2008.

  1. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    Shortly after school started here, easy child 2 came telling us that her mom had told her that she would be sending us the dates that easy child 2 needed to be at footbal games to play with the band. easy child 2 said it was required, it was part of her grade, and her mom told her we HAD to take her or make other arrangements with mom to get her there.
    easy child 2 is in 6t grade. She physically attends the school in the junior high building, but is not really considered in junior high yet.
    She called last night and gave us the dates. All the dates she gave us happened to fall on the weekends she is with us, so I went to the school website to see if there were more home games for junior high that she'd be playing in, even if it wasn't our weekend to have her, we'd still go watch.
    I found that junior high games happen on Tuesdays, not Fridays, and the Fridays she gave me were for Varsity home games that started at 7:30 (she claimed she had to be there at 530). Tthen I thought it was odd that 6th graders would be reuired to attend high school football games instead of Jr High ones, so I called the band director.
    She's not required to attend any football games for band. In addition, a form was sent home at the beginning of the year that her mom signed that had the schedule on it, and very clearly said 6th grade wa not required to attend football games for band.
    We can come up with 3 scenarios why this happened - A) easy child 2 lied to get to go to the football games (entirely possible - her mom won't let her do ANYTHING - literally), B) easy child 2 truly doesn't undertstand (also possible), or C) easy child 2's mom figured this was a way to control what easy child 2 did on 3 of our weekends (yes, she'd do that, in a heartbeat).
    We have a wedding this weekend - rehearsal Friday, wedding Saturday. We had planned to split up Friday night, husband taking easy child 2 to the game, and I attending rehearsal - however, we can't see anything good coming from taking easy child 2 to these games based on all this bull we've been fed. If she didn't understand and we take her, well...that's the best case scenario, but she still plays dumb to get away with things on purpose as it is - she doesn't need more validation that it works. If she lied to get to go, that's obvious. If her mom lied, well, again, obvious.
    We are more than glad to tae easy child to activities. In fact, I had already planned to take her to some games this year, but this really chills my enthusiasm.
    Anyway, husband decided that easy child is not going to the game this Friday, given all this info. So since we don't "get" easy child unti 6, and she said she had to be there at 530, we have to coordinate with her mom. This is the email I wrote up. Can anyone find this at all offensive? (this woman is evil, remember)
    It would be so nice to be able to call mom up and talk about this, but that isn't an option. Its highly likely this woman is behind this whole scheme.
    Anyway, here it is.


    I though it was off that6th graders were required to attend high school football games so I did som checking and found out that they are not required to attend any football games and their attendance in no way affects their band grade. They are only required to attend the winter and spring concert. Just FYI in case you were not aware of this.

    Anyway, reason for all this, we have a wedding this weekend and are not going to the game (had it been required, we were planning on making i wrk so easy child woud be there). So we will plan on picking easy child up at regular time at your house on Friday."
    Last edited: Sep 8, 2008
  2. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    It would work for me, but if this woman lied she is going to think you are calling her a liar. Any way you can just arrange to pick her up at 5 and tell the ex that you want to "help the band director by being an extra chaperone" as a reason to get her earlier.

    Then go do what you planned (the wedding) and see what happens?

    Or even offer to take the child to the game, and follow through at 5:30 but take her in "to help out the band director" and see what is actually going on - what easy child will say if she lied, what mom will say if she knows you are going and SHE is the one who lied, etc...

    Then take her to the wedding stuff. I am meaning take the kid to the early time before teh game and see what reason/excuse she gives for no one being there, for being told she isn't playing and you aren't needed to "chaperone", etc...

    I guess I am just twisted in my thinking, but i would want to see how it played out, then remove the child from the game.

    Hope all goes well,

  3. Andy

    Andy Active Member

    If husband's ex knows about the wedding, is she trying to ruin it for you? This is her way of keeping you from plans you may have already made for the weekends you have easy child 2?

    I like Susie's idea of not saying a word and following through on one of the games to see how easy child 2 would react?

    Can the school be asked to send copies of parent info stuff to your home?

    If she demands why you didn't take easy child 2 to the games, THEN tell her that you have received information that the band does not play on Fridays.

    It could be that easy child 2 picked up the Jr High band schedule thinking that it was hers? Though it is weird that they are ONLY on your weekends? That just doesn't happen.

    If you do send the note and want to be a tad less confrontal (I think it is fine but she will jump on the hint of anything.):

    "We would love to take easy child 2 to her band performances. We were looking forward to taking her to Friday night games to listen to her performance in the band based on the schedule she took home but have since found out that 6th graders do not play at High School games. easy child 2 may have mistakenly picked up the High School band schedule. Since you planned on us picking up easy child 2 at 5:30 on the following Fridays, we will gladly follow through with that so as not to inconvenience plans you have made. Maybe she would like us to take her to some games this fall to watch? We will try to get her to a few games."

    I would not give a reason why you can't make it this Friday - you don't need to give it.
  4. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    I'm with you, Susie...I'd like to see how it will play out - however, I talked to another 6th grade band parent and she told her daughter (in band with easy child) that it was me on the phone asking about the "football game requirement". So easy child, most likely, will know tomorrow that we know that games aren't required. I asked the other parents to be discreet, but that didn't happen, so I'm afraid that option is already blown. I could be wrong.

    The other thing is that easy child's mom may stay to watch easy child, and there will b a public display if we try to take easy child after-the-fact. But then again, there would be witnesses to her display, and I could set up who those were...

    I'm gonna think on this. Andy I may just copy and paste your email. I am getting too involved in this crap.
    Last edited: Sep 8, 2008
  5. busywend

    busywend Well-Known Member Staff Member

    husband should be sending the note.

    It should say:

    "Shari spoke to another parent and found out easy child 2 does NOT need to be at the varsity games for band. If she wants to go to the varsity game in the future we will be glad to provide rides for her on our weekend. However, given that it is not a requirement, this weekend we have a wedding and will be unable to bring easy child 2 to the game. We have arrangements for her to be ______ (wherever she will be while you are at the wedding)."
  6. ML

    ML Guest

    I like Andy's note and also feel it should come from husband. What a mess. Hugs, ML
  7. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    I agree with Andy's note. I also agree that there is no need to say what you will both be doing. Andy's note leaves plenty of room for EX to save face if she WAS totally innocent (or even if she wasn't) and also doesn't blame anyone - misunderstandings can happen. Whatever you may privately believe shouldn't be put into the email.

    If this is easy child's manipulations, then she has been caught out on it. If it was just a misunderstanding, then again - no blame.

    If easy child WAS trying to be manipulative, you should still be able to talk to her (easy child) and let her know that you WERE planning on taking her to some games anyway, there was no need for any subterfuge (if indeed there was any). But if easy child was trying to be sneaky, she needs to know that this causes more problems between you all which, frankly, is more likely to curtail her activities rather than give her more freedoms.

  8. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    Thanks, all.

    I try to use as little emotion as possible in dealing with this woman, and I like everyone's suggestion.

    I agree it should come from husband, but again, she refuses to talk to husband, so... I use a joint email account for communication with her, and he approves and is aware of anything sent, but when he tried using email only from him, she never replied. And she won't talk to him in person.

    Maybe I'm borrowing trouble, but I worry about where easy child 2 is headed with all this crap. She can't read, she hates school, and she's starting to look for attention anywhere she can get it. I've found little poems she's written about "Will I be popular if I __________" and "Will you love me if I ______" and while both are pretty normal at this age, I've seen her flirt with other little boys and she will say or do or become anything to keep that boy's attention, positive or not. Given the lack of confidence and ability in school, her mom's refusal to allow her to do ANYTHING with friends or outside school (this band thing is truly the ONLY way easy child has a chance to get to go to football games from her mom's house), and her attention seeking - well, it just scares me where she may be headed.
  9. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    I first have to say that this is a very lucky little girl to have you voluntarily become one of her parents. Even as a step parent, you probably have a very positive effect on ehr thinking - even when it doesn't show.

    I also have to say, "WHAT A WITCH" her mom is. My heavens, the kid can't do ANTHING with other kids? That is just not right.

    Anyway, you are problem right to be afraid of where things aer going. What did the lawyer you saw about custody say? What did he think the chances of changing things was?

    Many hugs to you, and all the kids. I hope this woman doesn't make you crazy.
  10. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    I also vote for Andy's note whether from you or husband. When dealing with evil manipulators....generic is the key. Write her as if she's a complete and utter stranger. Helps keep the emotion out of it.

    easy child is lucky. If she doesn't know it now........she will later down the road. You're a great stepMom. :D
  11. Star*

    Star* call 911

    I PM'd you so I wouldn't get voted off the island.

    I have had it with this broom riding nare do spell.

    And for more kinder advice - What Andie said. lol.
  12. trinityroyal

    trinityroyal Well-Known Member

    Another vote for what Andy said.
    I suspect that I'd really like to recommend what Star said. But...that would probably cause no end of ruckus.
  13. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    The lawyer felt very confident that we could get something done. We may not get a full custody switch, but he's confident that we could get a lot more visitation if we took her back to court, as well as the right to make religious decisions, extra curricular decisions, AND educational decisions. The downside is that it will take 6-9 months to get it on the docket, at least, and easy child's mom will work her that entire time. We have no doubt of that. Its a matter of how much damage will mom do to her before it gets to court and in the "cooling off" period after... Can easy child stand her ground to her mom about where she wants to live, etc. And its going to cost A LOT.
    We think that easy child will get mad enough at mom in the next year or so to really push for this on her own - our fear is that it may be too late to save school at that point...
    I am making husband make the ultimate decision on this. I will support it either way, because there is no "win" to this - her mom is making darn sure of that.
  14. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    Her mom forcefully inhales. I am sorry you have to live with this.

    Do you mean that this school year will be done, or that school all together will be done? Sorry, I was confused by that.

    I hope that easy child brings things to a head sometime in the near future, simply because I think it would be best for her.

    You are very smart to leave the decisions on court in your husband's hands.
  15. witzend

    witzend Well-Known Member

    I find it easiest to be certain that things are worded in such a way that no one seems to be accusing or being accused. How about this.

    Dear x

    I had misplaced the band schedule for easy child 2 - you know how hectic things get at the beginning of the school year. I checked the website and confirmed with the band director that she is not required to be at any school functions during her regularly scheduled visits with us, so we won't worry about scheduling that.



    If she wants to argue the point she can call or write and tell you why she is requiring you to jump through hoops that aren't there.
  16. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    I mean that I'm afraid if we don't start making a turnaround with easy child's academics NOW that we won't get her turned around - and that she'll head down that really wrong path... Sorry, that wasn't very clear.

    I sent a generic combination of the above suggestions. Not quite as friendly as Andy's, but terribly, terribly generic - "we found out its not required, we've got plans, we're not going this Friday". We never got a copy of the band schedule (mom doesn't share and I had a terrible time getting ahold of the band director to get one).

    I just learned, tho, that 2 copies of the schedule went home the first week of school, clearly stating at the bottom that "6th graders are ONLY REQUIRED to attend the winter and spring concerts" and that easy child 2's mom SIGNED and RETURNED the second copy, as instructed.

    So unless mom's behind this, there is NO REASON this should even be an issue (easy child manipulating OR misunderstanding) except that mom doesn't keep track of crap. Just like our trip this summer that she "didn't know about".
    Lasted edited by : Jul 8, 2014
  17. busywend

    busywend Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Shari, I am saying this for all moms out there that have an ex that is remarried and therefore their children have a stepmom.

    My difficult children stepmom has such the wrong impression of me. I made such efforts to welcome her and make sure difficult child knew it was OK to love her stepmom. I was friendly to a fault.
    I did get child support. I had a pretty good job, I struggled but did OK. I could take difficult child to a movie a couple times a month.
    I never submitted one doctor bill to her father. That includes all the psychiatrist, rx, dentist, etc. They never paid for cheerleading (which some know is extremely costly) or soccer, Tball, etc. I knew they struggled, too. They expressed often how tough they had it and both worked a couple jobs (no kids). Several years go like this. I had asked difficult children dad to please notify the court of his new income as it had been 3 years since it was adjusted. He never did, so I filed with child support for a review. Shortly after that I found out they were trying to adopt child.
    When it came time for court, they had a lawyer there. I was surprised they would spend the money on that.
    When the judge ordered him to pay more money, I asked them to not make it effective until 2 months after I knew they were going to get their baby. I figured that would help out a bit for her to not have to go back to work so quick.

    Here is the kicker. A couple years after that I asked (in a heated moment) why stepmom do you still not see how helpful I have been and giving? Why did she think I never submitted a receipt from a doctor?

    Do you know what she said?

    "I just thought you were too unorganized to make a copy of the bill and send it to us."

    ARE YOU FREAKING KIDDING ME????? Unorganized? Where on earth did she get that idea? My house was always organized, difficult child always went with the nicest clothes, etc.
    No, I did it to be nice and keep the peace for my daughter!

    Then I asked her why they bothered to get a lawyer. She said they thought I was taking them to court to say they had not paid me. WHAT??? Why would I do that? So they spent money to get a copy of every check they ever wrote to me.

    We do have civil relationship for difficult child. We work together as much as possible.

    But, I will never be a good mom in their eyes. It does not matter what I do or say. There is NO reason she should have made the conclusions she did about me.

    And by the way, I could totally see difficult child making it sound like I would not let her go anywhere even though it is her that did not want to go places. And you can believe me when I say - she is COMPLETELY different with them than me. Her babysitter once told me she could not believe what a different difficult child she saw when dad picked her up.

    I do not recall any details about this mom. She could be a bad mom for all I know. But, I also know that many times split families assume to much bad about the other side. I don't know why.
    I always tell them if you thought of it, I thought of it to. Why would we be so different to have not tried the same techniques? I told them if difficult child tells you something that sounds bizzare - it is and it is probably not true.

    I know I am a bad mom in their eyes and I have to tell you...I am a great freaking mom.
  18. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    I appreciate your insight and experience.
    I don't think this woman is a bad mom - that's why this is so freakin' stupid. I do think (know) that she is blinded by her anger with husband, and easy child is paying for it. Think what a great life easy child could have if her mother could see past her anger.
    She did this with her first ex-husband and older daughter when she divorced him 15 years ago, and she's doing it again (we are friends with her ex husband and older daughter now, too). I've known her for 17 years or so, before she divorced the first ex, long before she became husband's ex, and long before husband became my husband. Me, my ex, husband, and several others were a group of friends and ran around together - when husband started dating her, the group, collectively, would decide if we were inviting husband along based on whether the group wanted to put up with her or not. My opinion of her has never changed. We would go to a nice restaraunt for dinner and she'd lay into husband and scream at him - and I mean scream - for the most random crap you ever heard. I tried to be her friend during that time - made a true effort - and she just plain doesn't know how. In fact, I have an email from her that says the only reason she didn't leave husband was because she didn't want to have to find someone new, and putting up with him was better than being alone. No crap, I still have that email. I've only met one person who cared for her, and that person grew up with her. She also stopped spending time with her when their daughters were 6 because she couldn't stop calling their dughters "stupid". The daughters are grown now, so that friend is back, but will be the first to tell you the world revolves around mom.
    She lives in the middle of 80 acres, 50 yards from her mom (grandma), in a house grandma paid for. Grandma makes and keeps track of all of easy child's appointments and takes her to them. She gets easy child up in the morning and to school, and gets easy child off the bus at night. She picks up easy child's clothes off the floor and washes the clothes so easy child has clothes (according to grandma, mom does laundry once a month, if that, and easy child doesn't have enough clothes to go that long - where as mom does). Grandma buys easy child's clothes and school supplies. When easy child did swimming lessons, even tho mom was home, grandma took her. easy child was in soccer until husband became her ex. husband went to her soccer game. When he showed up for the next, there was no easy child. When husband asked her about it, easy child told him mom said the coach stopped calling. husband called another parent on the team, the coach and this other parent had been both been calling. husband bought easy child a new pair of name brand sneakers because her feet were hurting. She wore them home and he never saw them again. When he asked mom about them, she said easy child can't wear leather shoes because they make her feet stink, yet a month later, she had some fake leather ones from walmart... When mom and husband were still together, mom's ex bought a new camper. Three weeks later, grandma bought mom a new camper. When I bought a new truck, 6 weeks later, mom had a new truck. She doesn't even keep track of her oil changes - she'll go to her garage to get in her truck to go to work, and her dad's truck will be there and her dad will be gone in hers to get the oil changed at the dealership.
    When I talked to her when easy child was in 3rd grade about easy child struggling in school then, she called easy child into the living room and yelled at her "if you don't get your head out of your :censored2:, you're going to stupid like your father." And I quote. She didn't get the IEP team back together after easy child's ADHD evaluation because she didn't want us involved (per grandma - who also went to school to try to get them to give easy child the tutoring without getting the iep team back together). When I talked to her this summer about getting easy child into tutoring, she screamed at me for 30 minutes in her living room, mostly about how badly husband treated her when they were together (what does that have to do with the fact that her daughter can't read?). I tried to invite her, her new hubby, and his kids to a picnic in the park - I was met with a very staunch "he!! no", apparently new hubby thinks its wrong to spend time with the ex'es and won't allow it. The school still offers tutoring 3 days a week before and after school. She wont' let easy child go because she doesn't want grandma to have to take her or pick her up. husband and I offered. No, she won't allow that either. easy child's step-siblings do not go to the same school but are there 2 nights a week and every other weekend. easy child has been invited to schoolmates' homes on weekends and her mom will not let her go. When you ask mom why, it is because the step-siblings are there - she has to stay home and play with them - they are her friends and she needs to be there. Likewise friends from school aren't allowed at mom's, either, cause the step-sibs are always there when easy child is. I could go on.
    I believe what you're saying happens A LOT. I don't believe that's what's happening in this case (altho she IS better than she used to be). But I could be wrong.
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2008