Son moved out to live with his dad. Help!

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Casual scribe

Son moved out to live with his dad. Help!

Hi everyone. New here so hope this is the right place to post.
Basically as the heading says, my 12 year old son announced he wanted to go and live with his dad and has gone for two weeks holidays but with the full intention of not coming back. Heart is breaking! I can’t even function.
He got punished for pushing and got a phone ban, he wasn’t happy so he asked to go. After he calmed down he said he didn’t. But a few days later when I sat him down and talked calmly he admitted he still did and is already away.
We don’t have a volatile relationship, yes there is shouting and I called him a spoilt brat. He has two little bro’s who stop him doing certain things since they have to do stuff too. We have rules about times he’s allowed out until, screen time, homework, chores etc. With his dad and SM however he is an only child and will be run about after and go wherever he wants (possibly not the reason tho). He only said he felt sad and wanted to see if he still felt sad at his dads.
He’s had a little trouble with friends at school, hates his appearance, thinks he’s the worst in his football team.
He does get in trouble a bit at home, usually for pushing boundaries or similar. Gets lots of warnings and then screen ban.
He had a meltdown back at Easter, and said he didn’t want to see his dad again and I have encouraged and encouraged him to go and keep in touch. So he’s only seen his dad for an hour a week since then and said he never wants to sleep over there again. And now has upped and moved there. His dad has an involvement in a sport that I cannot get him to regularly and his dad can and will take him whenever he wants.
Me and his SD are lost and heartbroken. His little bro’s are just wandering around the house looking for him. As is the dog.
And all my friends just say, oh don’t worry he’ll be back. But I know him and he won’t.
Any words of wisdom for an hour absolutely heartbroken mum who’s lost a part of her? ☹️
Mod

Re: Son moved out to live with his dad. Help!

Hi @Ml_g9 firstly I am sending you so much love during this incredibly painful experience, it is very evident you have a connected and loving relationship with your boy. It must be nerve wracking given how little his Father is involved, to truly know whether he will be emotionally safe. Have you spoken to his Father on the phone? You've mentioned your Son is up against some struggles outside of the home, have there been any major changes at home, perhaps with his younger brothers or anything else? I would definitely recommend using our service, as well as reaching out to your supports. Your own self-care is important right now, would you consider seeing a counsellor or having a chat with the crew at Parentline (state numbers are the bottom of this page)? They have a lot of experience in supporting parents. Please know you're not alone, many in this community are supporting one another through the challenges that surround raising young ones. I am going to tag some of our community to provide their insight too Heart

@taokat @sunflowermom @Schooner @lizard0812

 

Prolific scribe

Re: Son moved out to live with his dad. Help!

Hi MI_g9 what a horrible emotional time you are having. My heart really goes out to you. My story is so very similar to you. We have been separated now for 3 years and have had a couple of tough years but the last month has been horrendous. I can’t offer much advise but support I can give lots of because that’s about the only thing that is getting me through each hour at the moment.

Our kids are our worlds and to see them hurting so badly and be so upset and confused just rips your heart out as a mother. Sounds like he is very lucky that he has a very loving caring mother in you and we just have to hope they realize that and eventually with our love and support they will make it out the other side.

Unfortunately we have no control over what happens in the other parents household and it can undo all the good hard work we put in at times. Just try and be kind to yourself and we have to believe in what we are doing is the best for them even though it’s so very very difficult with all their resistance and anger.

Big hugs for you and here anytime for support 🤗
Parent Peer Supporter

Re: Son moved out to live with his dad. Help!

Hi @MI_g9,

I’m so sorry that you’re going through this. I know exactly how you feel as I went through it earlier this year. My ex and I separated 2 years ago and have joint custody. My daughter chose to live with her father without telling me or explaining her decision. I was utterly heartbroken. My ex and I had an excellent relationship up until that point. However, I have always been the disciplinarian and he has always just let her do what she wanted. When it happened, like you, I was in shock and overcome by sadness. I reached out to friends and a counselor to help me navigate that situation. Everyone also told me that she would come back but given she was 16, I doubted that and just had to grieve and move on. I did text her once or twice a week to see how she was and tell her I loved her. For two months, she never responded, which was devastating, and then out of the blue she started making an effort. I think she didn’t want to admit she made a mistake and was also testing the waters with me. In the end, after 2 1/2 months with her dad, she moved back in with me. Turns out Dad wasn’t as perfect as she thought he was and having ultimate freedom wasn’t what it was cracked up to be. She is now with me permanently and our relationship is amazing and stronger than ever. She still sees her dad once or twice a week for dinner but their relationship is quite strained. The best advice that was given to me was to continue to let your son know you love him and support him and that he will always have a home with you. Kids are incredibly smart and will figure things out for themselves. You can still have a positive loving relationship regardless of where your son is living. The other advice that was very helpful was to take care of myself. I truly feel for you and hope you and your son find a way to work this out so that you’re both happy.
Highlighted
Casual scribe

Re: Son moved out to live with his dad. Help!

Thank you everyone for all the support. This is the absolutely worst time of my life. I struggle to get through each hour without him.

He was meant to be coming with us on a day out today and sleeping over but his dad text last night to say he didn’t want to go and for really upset when he tried to make him.
Absolutely heartbroken all over again as I was so excited to just see him.
And now his dad is saying he doesn’t even want to see me at all. Or his little brothers (who just cry for him).
I spoke to him on the phone last night and he was so cold and callous and angry. But there’s no reason to be angry with me, we left on good terms, he gave me a hug and everything. He wouldn’t even say he loved me. Just said ok when I did.
Can’t believe I’m losing my son.
Community Manager

Re: Son moved out to live with his dad. Help!

@Ml_g9 , must be such a horrible time for you Smiley Sad really sorry to hear all of this. 

 

I can hear how much pain you're in during all of this. 
I can only say what other parents have jumped in to say - that it could take time, but things can change. How he is now, it not necessarily how he will always be. 

 

What are you doing this weekend to take care of yourself in all of this? What supports do you have?

Its so so important that you are doing the things you need to do to keep above water and stay well Heart

We're here to listen x

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