My ex-husband and I share custody of our 9 year old son. He literally splits the week between two houses, and he seems very happy with that arrangement. We are blessed that we live only a 5 minute drive apart in a small town, so logistically it is not too complicated, and while we may not be the best of friends, we manage to avoid arguing and do our best to be good parents together. However there are days where it is a right royal pain the the arse.
Things are invariably left in the wrong house. In times of changeable weather, coats are rarely in the house he is setting off from in the rainstorm. He can get dropped off in sunshine the night before with nothing more than a jumper, and it is only when the rain starts you realise his coat isn’t here! It doesn’t matter if you have more than one coat, they can all end up in the wrong place. Ditto shoes, PE kits and all manner of things.
He gets away with two puddings sometimes, and on occasion even two dinners! If we handover post dinner, we should probably remember to check with the other one what has been eaten, but we don’t always think to question what he tells us.
School notes don’t always get seen, leading to situations like this morning. The school website informs me his class assembly is in March. He told me this morning it is tomorrow, and that he needed his costume today for dress rehearsal. First I have even heard of it. You try creating a Victorian factory workers costume from scratch, 2 minutes AFTER you should have left the building. I presume a note went home re the date change, but never made it as far as me.
He can blame the other parent. When I said ‘Maybe Dad has sorted your costume, as he hasn’t mentioned it to me’, I was told ‘Daddy said he couldn’t think of anything’. Which meant I was cross with my ex for not giving me any warning. Turns out he was unaware of costume requirements too, Max was just using a convenient alibi for his own forgetfulness. Luckily I tend to start conversations without acrimony or it could have led to a row!
I miss my son when he is at his other house.
Despite these little niggles, which could probably be mostly eradicated if any of us were a bit more organised, on the whole I think it is working for us, whether it continues too as Max gets older we can only wait and see. My main tips for anyone considering it as an option is:- be organised and be nice!