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Parenting Issues This forum is for discussing any of the parenting issues involved in your divorce, including parenting of step-children.

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  #1  
Old 01-14-2019, 01:52 AM
tunnelight tunnelight is offline
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Default Science fair projects - how do you all do it?

There's a lot more to shared parenting than I had thought. It almost feels like everything has to be discussed, even the damn packing of your child's lunch. Jokes, aside. For the yearly science fairs.. where at least 2 months of notice is given.. how do you all handle it? Historically, including when I was EOW, we would alternate. One year I would do it and one year mom.

Now, I feel like mom was use it as an opportunity this year just to communicate with me to annoy me and make demands. This would look like something like her messaging me on my time with a laundry list of tasks and deadlines for the science fair project.

Would it be unreasonable of me to push back and state I want to stick with the status quo of us alternating and that she be responsible this year per our historiical rotation?

Of course, if she reaches out before submitting in the intake sheet to see if we want to do it together and for us to decide on a project together and allocate tasks, then that might be different. But if it is her typiical way of just reaching out to me a month later telling me what the child has decided to do with only a discussion with mom and not me, followed with demands and deadlines , then that's where my irritation comes from.

How do you guys handle it?
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  #2  
Old 01-14-2019, 10:08 AM
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Janus Janus is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tunnelight View Post
For the yearly science fairs... we would alternate. One year I would do it and one year mom.
Traditionally the child does it.


Quote:
How do you guys handle it?
I am willing to do the following:
  • Pay for materials (up to $20 for a major project)
  • Drive kids to the store to purchase materials
  • Pick up things or deliver things to/from Mom's house
  • Deliver things to school

I am not willing to do the following:
  • Plan the project
  • Delegate tasks
  • Do the project
  • "Finish" the project (typing, layout, Bristol board)

I am willing to do the things I am willing to do every year, or never. Up to my kids.

Yes, some kids bring in parent-projects that are far superior to that of my children. I am comfortable with that. My kids learn something, and take pride in what they have accomplished. That is all I want.
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Old 01-14-2019, 11:21 AM
tunnelight tunnelight is offline
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You're right. It should be a child thing. Sounds like you are good at dealing with your ex and I sure could use you as a mentor ! I'm a rookie, very new to joint custody and shared 50.50 access.

Oh man, that picking up and dropping off things off to your ex, is it a pain? Does it involve a lot of energy for communication and coordination of times during your parenting times ?

Maybe I'm not reading this right. Do you just go based on what kids say? For example, I want to pickup my project from mommies to work on it? Or are there accompanied messages from mom before hand ?

Does mom communicate to you when the form goes home? Do you reach out? Or just talk with child and see what they say?

Is mom ever putting you in situation with the kids where you are buying all the materials ? What do you do ?

This is all going based on dealing with a difficult ex who will throw stuff at you last minute with unreasonable expectations, and then turns around and blames you for the project being incomplete. Like manipulation.

What happens if mom hopes child to do tasks with you last minute on your long weekend you have other plans with the kids ?

Last edited by tunnelight; 01-14-2019 at 11:25 AM.
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Old 01-14-2019, 11:56 AM
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Sounds like you are good at dealing with your ex
To be clear, I despise her and I would revel at her untimely death. I do love my children though, very much so. That tempers my actions in a big way.

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Oh man, that picking up and dropping off things off to your ex, is it a pain? Does it involve a lot of energy for communication and coordination of times during your parenting times?
I live about 5 minutes away from my ex, so that isn't a big deal. Coordination would be:

"Child needs science fair materials. When are you home?"

Quote:
Maybe I'm not reading this right. Do you just go based on what kids say? For example, I want to pickup my project from mommies to work on it? Or are there accompanied messages from mom before hand ?
Kid project, kid coordination.

Quote:
Does mom communicate to you when the form goes home? Do you reach out? Or just talk with child and see what they say?
Mom would never reach out to me, I just talk with my kid.

Quote:
Is mom ever putting you in situation with the kids where you are buying all the materials ? What do you do ?
Within a $20 budget, I will buy all the materials. If it goes over that then child needs to consider a different project.

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What happens if mom hopes child to do tasks with you last minute on your long weekend you have other plans with the kids ?
I generally assume that this is exactly what will happen and plan accordingly.
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  #5  
Old 01-14-2019, 12:16 PM
tunnelight tunnelight is offline
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Good answrs. I like it. I think I know what I need to do from now on.

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Originally Posted by Janus View Post
"Child needs science fair materials. When are you home?"
So you don't really get a say in the time. What she says is what goes?


Quote:
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I generally assume that this is exactly what will happen and plan accordingly.
LOL. Not actually funny but I saw some humor in that.

In short, we have to go based on their availabilities. Do you ever feel manipulated by her? I often feel a lot of the dad's I speak to deal with a lot of the similar things I have to, and really don't want to put up with.

How do we take our power back so we're not being manipulated?
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Old 01-14-2019, 12:43 PM
kate331 kate331 is offline
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Tunnelight, you sound like an awesome Dad!!! If you want to get back at your ex, let her do the whole Science Project ever year, I swear these are assigned by the teachers to punish parents
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Old 01-14-2019, 12:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tunnelight View Post
So you don't really get a say in the time. What she says is what goes?

If she is not available at a reasonable time, then I have her drop off the stuff at my place. Eventually, this becomes a mother-child problem. I certainly am not at her mercy.


A more detailed look at our usual exchanges:

******************
Me: Child needs her science fair materials. I can pick them up between 6pm and 8pm


Ex: I will not be home during that time frame


Me: Feel free to drop off the stuff at your convenience. You can leave it on the porch in the event that we are not home. When should I tell child that she will be obtaining her required materials?
*******************



Quote:
How do we take our power back so we're not being manipulated?
Know your boundaries. I know what I am willing to do, and what I am not willing to do.


It helps that we have a very detailed and comprehensive separation agreement that leaves almost nothing to be negotiated. Good fences make good neighbors. Because we rarely negotiate, a science fair dispute can't really escalate into a huge power struggle because we don't have much that we are able to fight about.
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Old 01-14-2019, 04:52 PM
iona6656 iona6656 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tunnelight View Post
You're right. It should be a child thing. Sounds like you are good at dealing with your ex and I sure could use you as a mentor ! I'm a rookie, very new to joint custody and shared 50.50 access.
I'll admit that I was not a big fan of Janus' when I began posting here...but now I have to admit he's kind of a genius when it comes to co-parenting with a stupid, childish, selfish ex .

So Janus- I have a question. It does seem like you're good at dealing (or rather- not dealing) with your ex. So, a question- do your kids pick up on this? How much you don't like your ex? It sounds like you're very good at remaining civil...but if the opposite isn't true...do the kids pick up on it?

I guess my question is whether it's better to fake a nice relationship with the ex for the kids' sake? Like letting them get away with non-consequential micro-aggression shit for the sake of keeping up appearances for the kids?

I feel like this is what tunnelight keeps having to do.
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  #9  
Old 01-14-2019, 07:26 PM
kate331 kate331 is offline
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I've always liked Janus's say it as it is advice. If he ever writes a book on dealing with all the bullshit, I will happily pre-order!
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