So, lately I’ve had all these articles popping up on my Facebook feed about co-parenting and how wonderful it is. (This is what actually inspired me to start this whole blog in the first place.) I’m really on the fence about this. I mean I think it’s great if it works as it’s intended, but I’ve never seen it work that way. I know many families that “co-parent” and basically what I see is a bunch of people who are pretending to like each other in front of children and tearing each other down behind their backs. What I also see are children who are confused because they are calling kids brother or sister that are in fact not even one little bit blood related or a step sibling. I know, I know, you don’t have to be blood related to be family, but to little kids, that’s confusing in some situations. I see “baby mama” getting upset because “baby daddy” isn’t doing what she thinks is best for the child or not doing what she would have done and then posting on Facebook how wonderful it is for the child to have “all of these great parents in their life”. I see kids getting spoiled because they have birthdays and Christmas with 8 different families.
I’m a realist. I don’t like my ex husband. I don’t pretend to like him. Hell, if I wanted to pretend to like him, I wouldn’t have spent thousands of dollars to divorce him. I’m civil to him for the sake of my children. I don’t talk ill of him in their presence. I also don’t make him out to be something he’s not. Along with this, I honestly do not see how you can be friends with your ex. I know it happens, I just don’t understand it.
You see, in my brain, that’s his relationship to build or burn. If he wants a good, strong relationship with his children, then it’s his job to make one. Me pretending that I like him and want to spend time around him “for the sake of my children” isn’t doing anyone any good. I would never stand in the way of their relationship and have even, at times, reminded my children that “it’s Father’s Day or it’s your Dad’s birthday”, but I don’t have to be his friend (or pretend to be) for the sake of my children.
Maybe I’m selfish, maybe, it’s my way of coping, maybe I’m completely screwing up my children by not buying into this whole kumbaya parenting style, but I won’t be fake, for the sake of my children, I won’t be fake.