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Old 06-16-2010, 03:09 PM
 
Location: Massatucky
1,166 posts, read 2,007,845 times
Reputation: 1800

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I need to lay down an ultimatum to my ex: No joint custody of the Prized Pup (we swap him some weekends) if she keeps trying to guilt trip me about our marital dissolution, AKA 'divorce'.

Two weeks ago, she unloaded on me, telling me how miserable she is in every imaginable anger-driven way AND concluded I a 'narcissist', that the divorce was simply a convenience for me, her 'life is in upheaval in so many ways' my life was pretty much the same, only ongoing without her...blah blah blah. She emails me and reminds me that she feels her life is erased, she feels homeless [note to self: She got enough money in the settlement to make a 75% downpayment on a nice (Salem, MA) condo. Instead she blew it on vacations, botox, a new BMW]. She is not happy with her current choices to either move in with her aged mother or her re-bound boyfriend. She says it is now just hitting her almost 2 yrs later that her life will never be the same and she has to fend for herself. She needs to work full time (she doesn't) and make some adult decisions. She is playing up the helpless victim role, tossed out on the street with nothing.

She did eventually apologize for the 'narcissist' remark and 'convenient' remarks...but this all needs to stop. I can't keep running to my therapist or Zen master every time she pulls this crap, yet giving her the dog lets me get away etc but...he can and will stay with neighbors....

(I live on a property bordering lakes and woodlands in the sticks, she is back in the city; dog is 'home' here - I see her dog-love time as a privilege - and mostly often an inconvenience to both of us)

I need to suck it up and tell her

"Look....Jessica....as much as I hope you are doing well and moving ahead with your new life, I can't unfortunately be reminded when you are not. It's not good for either of us; I too have had my struggles but it's something we can't share anymore. Yes, this has been difficult and it might well at times still be...but we each have to face it on our own. When we meet, just keep our chat perfunctorily cordial, hand off the leash and be done with it. I can't listen to your 'helpless victim' stories and I don't need the guilt-trip. If it does not stop you won't see the dog. I have no choice but I hope you understand".

Is there a better way to handle it?
I hate to 'use' the dog as the fulcrum on this lever, but she uses the swap to blast me, guilt me. Turn-a-round is fair play, ne c'est pas?

Last edited by cwaggy; 06-16-2010 at 03:42 PM..
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Old 06-16-2010, 03:13 PM
 
Location: Up above the world so high!
45,269 posts, read 88,560,970 times
Reputation: 39866
Quote:
Originally Posted by cwaggy View Post
I need to lay down an ultimatum to my ex: No joint custody of the Prized Pup (we swap him some weekends) if she keeps trying to guilt trip me about our marital dissolution, AKA 'divorce'.

Two weeks ago, she unloaded on me, telling me how miserable she is in every imaginable anger-driven way AND concluded I a 'narcissist', that the divorce was simply a convenience for me, her 'life is in upheaval in so many ways' my life was pretty much the same, only ongoing without her...blah blah blah. She emails me and reminds me that she feels her life is erased, she feels homeless [note to self: She got enough money in the settlement to make a 75% downpayment on a nice (Salem, MA) condo. Instead she blew it on vacations, botox, a new BMW]. She is not happy with her current choices to either move in with her aged mother or her re-bound boyfriend. She says it is not just hitting her almost 2 yrs later that her life will never be the same and she has to fend for herself. She needs to work full time (she doesn't) and make some adult decisions. She is playing up the helpless victim role, tossed out on the street with nothing.

She did eventually apologize for the 'narcissist' remark and 'convenient' remarks...but this all needs to stop. I can't keep running to my therapist or Zen master every time she pulls this crap, yet giving her the dog lets me get away etc but...he can and will stay with neighbors....

(I live on a property bordering lakes and woodlands in the sticks, she is back in the city; dog is 'home' here - I see her dog-love time as a privilege - and mostly often an inconvenience to both of us)

I need to suck it up and tell her

"".

Is there a better way to handle it? Look....Jessica....as much as I hope you are doing well and moving ahead with your new life, I can't unfortunately be reminded when you are not. It's not good for either of us; I too have had my struggles but it's something we can't share anymore. Yes, this has been difficult and it might well at times still be...but we each have to face it on our own. When we meet, just keep our chat perfunctorily cordial, hand off the leash and be done with it. I can't listen to your 'helpless victim' stories and I don't need the guilt-trip. If it does not stop you won't see the dog. I have no choice but I hope you understand
I hate to 'use' the dog as the fulcrum on this lever, but she uses the swap to blast me, guilt me. Turn-a-round is fair play, ne c'est pas?


Sounds like the healthiest way to handle it to me.

If you don't do this you're just volunteering for more of the same from her.

And "joint custody" of pets after a breakup is silly anyway.
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Old 06-16-2010, 03:14 PM
 
Location: Where we enjoy all four seasons
20,799 posts, read 8,709,419 times
Reputation: 15890
I personally would leave out the end."If it does not stop you won't see the dog" and "I hope you understand" because that opens the door for an argument. JMO
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Old 06-16-2010, 03:21 PM
 
Location: Massatucky
1,166 posts, read 2,007,845 times
Reputation: 1800
She is seriously tight with the dog.
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Old 06-16-2010, 03:24 PM
 
Location: Massatucky
1,166 posts, read 2,007,845 times
Reputation: 1800
Quote:
Originally Posted by crazyworld View Post
I personally would leave out the end."If it does not stop you won't see the dog" and "I hope you understand" because that opens the door for an argument. JMO

Good Point. So what do I do just ignore her when its time to swap?
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Old 06-16-2010, 03:26 PM
 
Location: Where we enjoy all four seasons
20,799 posts, read 8,709,419 times
Reputation: 15890
No I would say all the other stuff...not seeing the dog sounds like a threat that's all. The other stuff sounded great.
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Old 06-16-2010, 03:34 PM
 
Location: Massatucky
1,166 posts, read 2,007,845 times
Reputation: 1800
Well she gets The Speech Friday.
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Old 06-16-2010, 03:39 PM
 
Location: southwest TN
8,225 posts, read 14,937,379 times
Reputation: 14983
I agree with the others - leave off the threat - or she will find it inconvenient to return the dog to you one day. Just tell her you no longer wish to be involved in her ups or downs, as you have stopped including her in yours. What is her business is HER business and you not only don't want to hear it, you will stop listening. Further, you could say, "When we meet to swap the dog, let's keep it to the bare necessities: we can be cordial and friendly, but beyond basic pleasantries, that's all we really have to say to each other. With the exception of notifying the other if there's anything unusual about the dog that might require vet care."

Be firm yet polite. Don't say anything that might open a door to discussion or argument. State your position, hand over the leash and walk away. If she starts talking or yelling, keep on walking. You'll have already stated that you will not listen, so do not.
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Old 06-16-2010, 03:43 PM
 
8,680 posts, read 13,306,012 times
Reputation: 15273
AUGH! I know what you mean. When my ex and I split up, we'd still babysit each other's birds. Yes, it was nice not to have to pay a pet-sitter, and I got to see the bird that went with him and he got to see the bird that went with me. But when he started acting like, well, his usual bratty self, the cost of a pet-sitter suddenly became very much worth it.

If the dog is yours and there is nothing in your divorce agreement about visitation, I'd cut her off if I were you. The whole point to divorce is not to have to deal with the person's nonsense, and life is too short to waste time and energy on such silly little hassles.
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Old 06-16-2010, 03:52 PM
 
Location: Everybody is going to hurt you, you just gotta find the ones worth suffering for-B Marley
9,506 posts, read 17,794,531 times
Reputation: 9346
I'm an avid dog lover. I've had my dog for nearly ten years. I love her to pieces. I don't know what I'd do without her. But if this were happening to me I'd have to either cut him off from visitation with her or, if I knew she'd be well taken care of, I'd give her up to him so there was no excuse to see each other. If this is your only tie, it may be your only solution.
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