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Separating siblings

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Casual scribe
mrsj02

Separating siblings

Ok, this is going to be prickly. Quick backstory. Hubby is defence. We've moved 8 times in 12 years , children 7 & 11 don't cope well with the upheavals. DD is starting middle school & I have landed a great job & recent promotion, so earning great $$ after years of being SAHM, so we decided to stay put, while hubby relocated. DD 7 has decided she wants to move, so eldest is staying with me, youngest going with her father. I'm conflicted by this. Eldest is ASD & extremely aggressive & awful to youngest at times (which she displays by bullying classmates). Part of me thinks the separation (of siblings) will be positive for both (in different ways), another part of me questions it. We will still see each other, every few months. Has anyone else had this family dynamic?
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Breez-RO

Re: Separating siblings

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@mrsj02 This sounds incredibly challenging, thank you so much for jumping on our forums and sharing your story I do hope you find the community useful and supportive Heart I know it's common for defence families to have to make compromises like this and no doubt your concerns are pretty valid, perhaps you're right and the space between the two siblings could be positive for a while. We offer a free service, ReachOut Parents Coaching, which caters to issues like this and provides ongoing support around different challenges in the family dynamic. I will also tag some other community members for their input. Have you spoken to your husband about these concerns?

 

@sunflowermom @Tulip @taokat @Orbit64 @Schooner

 

Parent/Carer Community Champion
sunflowermom

Re: Separating siblings

Hi @mrsj02

This sounds like such a tough major life decision.  I don't have  any experience with siblings being separated for long periods of time but throughout this summer I have sent my 11 year old daughter to stay with family to catch a break from my 15 year old daughter that often bullies her.  My 15 year old has mental health issues. This was a nice break from the drama for the entire family and my daughters grew closer from it.  However, my younger one had a bit of hard feelings about it at first but ultimately enjoyed the attention from her Grandma and Auntie.

 

Is there any way this could be a "trial" and see how it goes for the first few months?  This might be especially tough on the younger one since you were a SAHM with her for so long.  We are here for you (sorry I could not have been more help) 

Parent Peer Supporter
taokat

Re: Separating siblings

Hi @mrsj02, I'm a single mum with an only child so can't offer any lived experience but can only imagine what a tough decision this must be for you. 

 

I do like @sunflowermom's suggestion of maybe trialling the move and seeing how the kids manage. It's so hard because we never know what the best thing is going to be or what the outcome of our parenting decisions are going to be, and sometimes we need to just jump in and see how things go. Decisions made can always be changed, and as you say there are positives in both your youngest staying with you as well as going with her father.

 

Hopefully there are some other parents who can share their thoughts as well. @Monty777@Happy, any thoughts?

Parent Peer Supporter
Happy

Re: Separating siblings

Hi @mrsj02

We separated as a family for about a 16 months, due to my husbands work. 

I had the kids with me whist he travelled interstate. He would leave Monday morning and return Friday night or early Saturday morning.

 

What we struggled with the most was when he returned back full time! 

We struggled to communicate as a family and the kids would always ask me for everything! 

I had to remind them that their Dad can help!!!

It took us nearly a year to be back to the way we were.  

I like the suggestion @sunflowermom offered,  as you can reevaluate how you're all coping with the separation.

I wish you all the best 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Casual scribe
mrsj02

Re: Separating siblings

Thanks everyone. I guess I'm worried about this; If miss 7 is missing home or really missing me, or just struggling with DH, I'm not certain he'll "do the right thing" (he's a "win at all cost", "don't show weakness" kind of guy). If i let her go, I'll never get her back
Prolific scribe
Erin-RO

Re: Separating siblings

This sounds like a really difficult and emotional situation @mrsj02. Do you have a counsellor or support person that you can chat to?

Parent Peer Supporter
taokat

Re: Separating siblings

Your understandable concerns certainly add another really difficult twist to the equation @mrsj02

 

I like @Erin-RO‘s suggestion. It’d be be great if you could talk this over with a counsellor and get their perspective. 

 

How would you feel about discussing with your husband how he will manage your daughter, and coming up with a plan for contact with you?

 

I wish I had more to offer you in way of suggestions, but listen to your gut feeling. It’s always right.

 

We’re always here to support you in any way we can, even if that’s just listening.

 

Let us know how you get on.