Monday, January 3, 2011

A Tale Of Two Swatches

I have a friend who is in the beginning trudges of a nasty divorce.  Involving a young child.  And as a child of divorce, I certainly have that perspective to offer.  She too is a child of divorce (heck, 50% of kids are), but as it is not my divorce, it seems easier for me to offer a little clarity.  A less emotional perspective. 

So she is still in the stage of never having a nice thing to say about the ex.  And to be fair, he has been a really terrible person to her and the baby.  So it's not without reason.  But when you have a child, you have to find the strength to put certain emotions aside for the sake of the child.  I completely understand that this is easier said than done.  But it is an important goal.

Growing up, my dad was fully willing to be the peace-maker in terms of my mother and her Satan husband. And for the longest time, she wanted that too. But her Satan husband refused to let her even say a nice word about my father, let alone to my father. She would literally get in serious trouble if she as much as said "Merry Christmas" to him on the 25th when they dropped me off. My point is that they did not communicate. Satan threatened lives. It was bad.

One year for Christmas, sometime in the mid 80's, I really wanted a Swatch Watch for Christmas. Don't judge, it was the 80's and they were all the rage. I of course told both parents when asked what I wanted. I was young though and didn't quite realize that I needed to be very specific in the information I gave to both of my parents. So Christmas morning at my dad's house, guess who got a fabulous pink and green Swatch Watch? OMG it was the most perfect 80's fashion statement ever! Next stop, my mother's house. Guess who got me a cute (but not my style) red, yellow and blue Swatch watch? But the moment I opened it, while still wearing the pink and green watch, Satan went on and on about how much better the red watch was. How I should only ever wear the red one if I loved my mother and wearing the one from dad would mean I hated my mother. Ever the peacemaker, I wore both. One on each arm. Like an idiot. For YEARS. I looked like a damn fool for most of elementary school.


Not my watch but the closest I could find.


I know this is a silly story and certainly not anything traumatic.  If you've read any of my previous Monster Monday posts, you know this is actually one of my funnier stories.  But I offer up this story to parents who are in the midst of a nasty split, fighting over kids and holidays and houses.  I get that your ex is evil in your eyes.  I get that this person has hurt you beyond words.  I get that you hold a grudge or have moved on or feel better getting the last word.  But if you share a child, the ex is likely going to be in your life to some degree forever.  Don't make your kid wear a watch on each arm for three years because you can't be big enough to send a few mature emails or phone calls.  Find the strength to be the bigger, better, nicer person.  I promise your kids will realize and be grateful for all your efforts and maturity in the end.

5 comments:

Sourkraut said...

Amen to that! I'm so glad neither of my parents ever got that bad because you're right that as an adult I appreciate their efforts to be civil while I was growing up. There are just some things kids don't need to know about or deal with.

kLl said...

I feel ya! My parents went through a nasty divorce (I also have an issues with my mother and after years of trying I have given up). I was the youngest of 3 and my mother's "toy", you know how the babies in hollywood are trendy? Yeah that was my mother. After everything horrible and awful my mother did for years my dad still tries his hardest to never say anything bad about her to us. My mother will still say horrible nasty things about him (their second divorce from each other was finalized on my 14 bday...almost 13 years ago). I tell my friends that no matter what they say about their ex, please dear god do not say it to their children.

Jazzie Casas said...

Married… divorced… separated… never together… Once you’re a father, you're always a father. There is no you in the formula of life anymore. There is always at least one other person standing beside you in that equation. Always. Own that. And never leave that behind.






Proud to be a Single Dad

Susan said...

Nicely said KK and very true.
However, my comment is geared toward the double Swatch wearing. I DID THE SAME THING! My boyfriend bought me a Swatch (Christmas) and my grandparents bought me one. Not out of fear of insulting one or the other, I wore both (One on each wrist) simply because I loved them both. One was all white and the other was silver. Swatch watches were very cool.

*kimmie* said...

OMG! I totally had two Swatch watches!

My first ever watch was a bright primary colored one with big numbers.

The second was a special edition Olympic Figure Skating watch - amazing!

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