Saturday, October 10, 2015


Here’s a  short story about a man who used his confused little daughter to try to get information on his ex-wife. 

Information that he has no right to, but has been given freely nonetheless:

‘I resent you asking and under the circumstances you don’t have the right. But I actually  feel like giving you an answer: Jack is a friend, he does not show any special or romantic interest in me whatsoever. We don’t hold hands, we don’t hug hello, we don’t even slap each other on the back. Don’t ever ask about my friends again.’

I couldn’t have been clearer.

We went  ice skating with Jack and his son Joey and we all had a nice afternoon.  Lilly’s dad ‘let us have the evening’to ourselves because he wanted to catch up with Roger anyway.  

The next day he came to pick Lilly up for her sleep over. She was on her stomach on the living room floor surrounded by colouring pencils and several pictures of her and Joey falling about on the ice. They were comical and quite well drawn. Her Dad pretended not to notice, although her artwork is her sole source of pride. I pointed at the drawings, brought up her falling over skating and he changed the subject.

After her sleep-over, the next evening  Lilly was in the bath and she asked me; ‘Are you and Joey’s dad reealy good friends?’

I said, ‘I wouldn’t say really good friends; not bestie hugging friends like I am with Marlene or AG or Charles’ mum. We’re just ordinary friends having play dates sometimes.’

She went quiet. Which is not like my girl at bath time, so I asked her. ‘Did daddy want to know? Did he ask you? ‘

She went even quieter and looked down at her fingers under the water.

I lowered my head to try to see her eyes, ‘It's ok if he did sweetie, you can tell me; did daddy ask you about Joey’s dad?’

I had to ask a third time before she mumbled softly ‘I don’t really remember’.

She was obviously uncomfortable and a bit distressed to I told her that was ok, made a joke and got her out of the bath.   Wrapped up tight in her red towel she sat in my lap and snuggled into me furiously – her relief was palpable.

I could happily have killed him at that night.


  1. The quicker you extract yourself and Lily from his influence and his reach the better. Reading these last two blogs tells me he is escalating again and it id time to rethink Lily's sleep overs. I don't think either of you are safe around him at the moment. 5:05am? Getting up really early or staying up really late?

    1. Hey Karrie, so my first reply bombed!; smart phones aren’t that smart after all it seems.
      My thinking runs along the same lines; that he is escalating but then maybe he was never really that much better in the first place. I remember that his psychiatrist and doctors all said he presents so well, it’s difficult to know how bad he really is. Hence they let him out of the locked ward after just two days!!!! (Fecking idiots) In hindsight, his doctor told me he was likely manic months before anyone realised; more like December/January rather than April. With a little digging I have evidence to confirm that. Anyway contrary to all hopes and beliefs, I don’t think he ever came back from the dark side – he just tried really hard to get me on side this last Christmas; put on a much better mask. Until he found I had an online dating profile, and that fell off. Now my friendship with Jack has triggered something and his mask isn’t sitting properly on his face. (I’m loving my analogies aren’t you?) So he’s trying to line up a new emotional crutch which could work in our favour; if he’s already willing to sacrifice his time with Lilly for time in restaurants.
      Don’t worry about our safety, we have a great little community around us and our yards are so narrow, everyone hears everything, which is how the police came the first time. If I feel things are getting worse I’ll word up the neighbours who don’t already know the risks, but I don’t think he’ll risk losing it like that again. For one thing his temper is controlled by the lithium but also He’s shrewd enough to know not to risk getting locked up.
      Thanks for checking in xo

  2. Arrgh!

    I so, so hoped that he valued his relationship with her enough that he wouldn't use her as a pawn in the middle.

    Very hard this one cause if you act on this information, and it get's back to Lilly, it makes Lilly more likely to hide in the future. In your situation with mental health issues in play her ability to communicate with you is key to her mental health.

    He's obviously using the "don't tell mum" card so she is feeling confused and conflicted about talking. If she is not still seeing her external emotional support regularly this might be the time to step appointments up again and make sure she has a space where she can spill without concern.

    Best Wishes

    1. Hi Belinda,

      I know, I too keep expecting more emotional maturity from him than he seems to possess. But he’s just so messed up now. I think one of the mental health crisis call centre doctors was right: his personality is damaged.

      He’s like a kid and all he can see is what he wants without considering the consequences of how he's going for it.

      I was pulling the washing in last night (at midnight) and considering the confrontation angle but I rejected it too. I am very much a ‘let’s drop our cards on the table’ sort of person, but that is pointless with him now.

      I have learned the hard way, that it serves no purpose at all: unless I stick hisown emails or a voice recording under his nose, he will always deny, then tell a more elaborate lie to cover the first.

      I think I have a better strategy: I educate Lilly. I explain things to her keep being honest with her and, as we do with the mean kids at school, I give her responses to practice and use under the circumstances.

      So I’ll tell Lilly, ‘if daddy asks you about my friends or what I'm doing, you tell daddy that I said you must ask me’ and mummy also says; ‘it’s not nice for mummy or daddy to say ‘don’t tell’ or to keep secrets about what we talk about.’

      So far she has thrived on honesty, but I agree with you that she needs to see her psychologist again for a little third party perspective.

      I can’t tell you what a wonderful child she is, some of the things she comes out with after we’ve had our little talks, I wonder if she’s seven or thirty seven.

      And she still wants me to marry Thor :0)

      Thanks again – I have to say I really look forward to hearing from you.

  3. You're such an awesome mum. Honestly who wouldn't want to be the step daughter of Thor ;-)

    That was my thought. Confrontation about it wasn't going to have any long term result other than giving him a fulcrum to manipulate her, through guilt, in the future. Everything in me says he has a significant personality disorder that is thus far totally unidentified by his mental health team. No one can lie as convincingly, and sway mental health professionals, as your writing has suggested he does without something being very, very wrong.

    Educating Lilly is a much better option. One of those responses could also be along the lines of "I don't make promises that hurt me". Relevant now.. and potentially applicable to other relationships in the future as it is so easy for early teens to end up in an emotional space where they feel caught up between a rock and a hard place with regards to keeping secrets/promises..You have done such a great job of teaching her coping skills and building her confidence and EQ that she has such a buffer against the bad stuff.

    It is really amazing just how much they just, are who they are. It's so much fun getting to discover the world through their the lens of their knowledge and innate intelligence.

    I'd also love to see that picture book you made if you don't mind sharing. My little one is in a whole I can't spiral and he hears stories a whole lot better than mumma yammering :-)

    Best Wishes

    1. Thank you Belinda,
      See, this is another reason why keeping this online diary is so therapeutic for me, I don’t just unload my thoughts and sort through the tangle, I get support and good advice from the loveliest people. It all helps so much.
      When I finish her book I will be glad to share, I might even get time to swap out the illustrations for little boys rather than girls, I only need to draw a fearful boy, I have the others already.

      I’m about to do more work on it now; Lilly’s very keen to have it finished :0)
      take care