STAY TOGETHER FOR THE KIDS

STAY TOGETHER FOR THE KIDS

My blog has gone a bit quiet in the last couple of weeks. In fact it’s quite frustrating because my blog had the best week of its existence recently.

I won a blogging award, my page views were triple their norm and I celebrated my first blogiversary.

But at the moment when it comes to putting pen to paper, or fingers to keyboard I feel a little bit blocked. I want to be riding on my successes, but I feel like anything I publish here will not be honest at the moment.

There are things I want to write about, but I’m not really sure how to express them, and to be quite truthful I’m not sure if I’m ready to. 

But as this is my place of expression, I feel like I owe it to myself to get it out, to expel it from my thoughts in the hope that it may resonate with, and maybe even help others. So here goes… a little piece of my life lately.

Stay Together For The Kids Recently, Jamie and I had to make the hard decision of going our separate ways.

It wasn’t something that happened over night, and in fact, behind the scenes it took months to lead up too and sort out. 

We are still in a very raw place on our new journey, and even though we’re still such good friends, I think it’s going to take a lot of time and support from each other in order for us to get used to our new situation. 

If my life in the last few years has taught me one thing, it’s that life is unexpected. 

I never expected to fall pregnant, I never expected to change career paths or to change life goals. Plus if you told me a year ago that this year I would be stepping away from a person who I still love so dearly, I never would have believed you.

But my life is going down a new path at the moment and I’m now starting to roll with the tides instead of fight against them.  

STAY TOGETHER FOR THE KIDS

There are many reasons why people stay together despite no longer being in happy relationships. It might be for financial reasons, for housing reasons, because separating means less time seeing your children, because it’s a lot of effort to explain to family members, or maybe because you quite simply don’t like change.

But when you get to the core of it, will you be happy staying together? Can you sustain this lifestyle? Will this make your children happy knowing that you’re both miserable?

It took Jamie and I a long time to realise that two happy parents that aren’t together, are better than two miserable parents that are.

For us our break up has been a combination of not having the same goals, not having any time together because of work and just generally not being in a happy relationship anymore.

It took a lot of courage for us to step out of our comfort zones and initiate the end, especially when that love for each other is still there.

Jamie and I were pretending for a long time that we were ok. We were very unhappy in our relationship and we were trying to fix things by pretending to be people that we quite simply aren’t. We were not being true to ourselves.

Jamie and I have always had different dreams and different goals. We thought that over time, after having Evie, that these would change, that we’d suddenly share the same vision.

Instead we ended up blocking each other from what we wanted to do and holding each other back. But for Evie’s sake, and because we’d built a life together, we decided to stick our relationship out.

The intention of staying together for the kids might seem like a very noble one, but ultimately it’s very unfair on yourself. How can you be expected to raise your children to the best of your ability, when you’re not happy?

We stayed at this pace for quite a long time, trying to find ways to change things, but always falling back into old habits.

One of the best pieces of advice that Jamie and I have been given so far is:

You, as yourself need to raise your daughter, not someone that you’re pretending to be, because one day she’s going to discover the person who you really are and not know who she’s talking to.’

Sometimes I find that people hold on to the idea of a ‘family unit’ and start to forget the bigger picture. A family is a group of people who love each other for who they are. Unfortunately for both us, we lost sight of who we really were and we became what we thought society expected us to be.

Jamie and I have had one hell of a journey over the past three years. We’ve been through so much so quickly, and more than most couples. We thought we could make it work because of our history and what we’ve already overcome, and because we did still love each other. But we came to a point in our relationship where we were both bitter and resentful.

Both Jamie and I come from a families where our parents are separated. All we ever wanted for ourselves, was to one day start a family with someone who we were going to stay with forever. 

It’s a romantic notion for sure, but for a while, neither of us could see that we were sacrificing the life that we both wanted, purely so we could have what we thought was a happy family.

JAMIE’S PERSPECTIVE

I never thought I’d have to write this, but between us Chloe and I felt that the best way to approach this post idea was together. We also thought that it would be nice if I had my own personal point of view within this post.

I have thought time and time again about how we SHOULD have done things, how things COULD have been different, but the fact is we didn’t do them and now we can’t go back. At the moment I’m done with looking back and I’m only looking forward.

The best thing I’ve taken away from this, and the first advice I’d give anyone in this sort of situation is to keep reminding yourself that there is a reason for being where you are and as hard as it is to focus on that reason when everything unfolds, it is important to not let your emotions get the best of you and lose sight of what you need to do.

I’ve always been against the idea of ‘staying together for the kids’ but when it came down to it, it felt like the right thing to do because I wasn’t thinking straight and I let myself turn into a shell of myself. That was not fair on my daughter. That was not fair on me.

I look forward to how our family is going to benefit from this decision, and as scary as the idea might sound if you’re going through something similar, do not let that rule your head.

Ultimately I’d like to say that nothing is worth losing yourself over. Always be true to your beliefs and don’t let anything get in the way, regardless if that is an unhappy relationship that you’re staying in because it’s ‘for the kids’. Don’t lie to yourselves. Your children deserve better than that and so do you.

FROM BOTH OF US

#MYSUNDAYPHOTO

We’re quite new to this journey, so obviously we don’t have all of the answers yet. The road is different for everyone, but we are so lucky that we are in a place where we’re able to communicate and get along.

We have sat down and had many talks and expelled many tears, but we are now in a place where we finally understand each other. We’ve both realised what the other person wanted and why the end had to happen.

We could hate each other, we could be bitter, we could be resentful, we could argue.

But when we think of our reasons for doing this and when we think of our little girl, all we want is for each of us to be happy. The only way to do that is apart.

We will remain close friends and we are lucky to both be in the headspace to maintain that. We will still go on family days out and maybe even holidays, we will both take on the responsibility of childcare and be there for Evie as best we can, and we will both respect each others personal growth and help to encourage each other on our new journeys.

I’m excited for the person that I’m going to become. I’m excited to be me again. I’m excited to watch Jamie grow in his own way, I’m excited to see him step out of his own comfort zone and for him to find out what he wants in life.

Separation doesn’t always have to be seen as such a bad thing. Separation can be seen as something that is very beneficial. It gives you the opportunity to grow and it also takes your children away from a bad situation.

Jamie is an incredible father and such a beautiful person. I am so grateful that he is a part of my life and I am so grateful that I got to create something so precious with him. I know that he will always be such a huge part of my life, despite the dynamic of our relationship changing.

At the end of the day we both know that our daughter is so loved and that is all that matters to us. She knows she is loved. She has grandparents who absolutely adore her and spend a lot of time showering her with love, she has aunties and uncles, great aunties and uncles, great grandparents and friends who show her everyday how precious she is.

But now it is time for us to love ourselves and to find our own happy, for all three of us.

Have you separated after having children together? What advice would you give to other people in the same situation?

Follow:
Share:

37 Comments

  1. February 29, 2016 / 8:00 pm

    Aw Chloe this is such an honest and heartfelt post. I love that Jamie had his own say on this too. I think that Evie is a very lucky girl to have two parents who clearly adore her and will make sure that she has the perfect childhood full of love even though your no longer together xx

  2. February 29, 2016 / 8:09 pm

    I think you’ve both made a very brave decision and I love how you both still have so much respect for each other despite separating. Staying true to yourself can be so difficult once we have children and many couples make the wrong decision in staying together and being miserable – which is never the best thing for the children. You both have so much love to give and in the end that’s the only thing that matters. I hope you both find what you’re looking for xxx

  3. February 29, 2016 / 8:27 pm

    I just wanted to give you both a virtual hug xx

  4. February 29, 2016 / 9:17 pm

    Thank you for sharing this – it can’t have been an easy post for you both to write. It’s always sad when something comes to an end. But your daughter clearly has two loving, invested, strong parents who are going to be fantastic role models for how to make parenting as a separated couple work. I wish you the best of luck for negotiating your new family dynamic

  5. March 1, 2016 / 7:39 am

    Wow I am sorry to read this… But it also sounds like it is the right thing for you guys. I love your approach to the situation and to the post and that things are amicable as I think that makes a huge difference to the kids. Big hugs and hope you are both happier this way. Xx

  6. March 1, 2016 / 8:20 am

    Oh Chloe, I hope you are doing ok. This is such an honest post and you sound like an incredibly strong person and a great parent. I agree that two happy parents are better separate than two miserable ones together. I wish you the best of luck with this transition. Evie is obviously so loved and taken care of… that is what really matters. sending lots of virtual best wishes and love xx

  7. March 1, 2016 / 8:39 am

    I’m so sorry to hear this, but it sounds like you’ve made a very brave decision, one which is right for all three of you. Wishing you all the best, and I’ll look forward to reading more updates as time goes on xxx

  8. March 1, 2016 / 8:44 am

    Thinking of you my love. I think this is such an honest post and I love that you’ve included both your opinions. I think it’s just an adjustment period and things WILL get easier and you will be ok!! The bes you can both do is be great parents which your already doing and unfortunately like you said if doing so isn’t being together then that’s the path you have to take. Here whenever xx

  9. March 1, 2016 / 8:55 am

    Sending loads of love to all 3 of you.x

  10. March 1, 2016 / 9:04 am

    This is such an honest and open post. My parents stayed together for the kids until I was 16 and it was tough for all of us – I knew my parents weren’t happy and that they were staying together until after my exams and that was harder than if they had gone their own ways a lot earlier. Good on you both for wanting what is best for all of you x

  11. Anna
    March 1, 2016 / 9:08 am

    My goodness, probably the most honest & heartfelt blog post I’ve ever read! I think you’ve both made a courageous decision and I’m sure it will all work out for the best.

    Best wishes to you both and of course beautiful Evie xx

  12. March 1, 2016 / 10:31 am

    This is such a honest and brave post for you both to write and share. Sometimes things don’t work out the way you had planned and accepting that and moving on is totally okay. You are both doing what is best for your daughter and that is what is most important. My parents stayed together in an unhappy relationship for way too long and it would have been better for everyone involved if they had gone there separate ways sooner. Thinking of you both though, I’m sure things will get easier. Lots of love xox

  13. You Baby Me Mummy
    March 1, 2016 / 11:00 am

    Awww huni, just want to give you a hug. Very brave decision huni and I am sure it will be for the best in the long run xx

  14. Sam
    March 1, 2016 / 11:44 am

    Thank you for sharing this xxx Bringing strength to others

  15. March 1, 2016 / 12:59 pm

    Aw, had tears in my eyes reading this. Really feel for u. It can’t have been easy to write. I really admire how u have both handled things and are putting yourselves and therefore Evie first. If ur happy she will be happy. Much love at what must be a difficult time. X

  16. March 1, 2016 / 3:31 pm

    Sorry to hear that you have had such a tough time and I hope that this decision will make you all happier. What great advice you were given to be true to yourself and not pretend. Good luck and stay strong!

  17. March 1, 2016 / 7:23 pm

    This is such a beautiful post and sorry to hear the news but reading this, you are both doing it in the best and most grown up manner possible x

  18. March 1, 2016 / 8:25 pm

    Oh, what a tough decision to make. I’m sorry you’ve both had to face this but admire your courage in making this choice and talking about it so openly. My parents stayed together for the kids and so much of my teens was coloured by this vague awareness that they were both unhappy – all that did was create unhappiness in me, too. As you say, I think it’s healthier for children to be raised by two happy, separate parents than a couple who are struggling to plaster on smiles. Wishing you both all the best for the future. x

  19. March 1, 2016 / 9:09 pm

    I’m so sorry to hear you are going through a tough time. This must have been so difficult for you both to write. I admire your honesty and I’m sure this post will help others going through similar situations. One thing I’ve learnt from reading parenting blogs over the past year is that you have to put your heart on the line & write something true to yourself at times. It will help you and it will help others. I think you’re both being incredibly mature and respectful of each other and your daughter. She has two brave parents who know that if Evie is going to be happy, then they have to try to make themselves happy too. Take care xx

  20. March 1, 2016 / 10:04 pm

    I’ve only started following your blog recently and wasn’t expecting this at all. This is a really brave post. I think giving Jamie the chance to speak too shows how maturely you are both approaching this which is great for your daughter. My parents divorced when I was young & I remember feeling relieved. As you say, two happy separate parents much better than unhappy together ones. Wishing you both the very best of luck with your new journeys xx

  21. March 1, 2016 / 10:37 pm

    What a very grown up and mature post from you both, it sounds like you have both talked this over and over and are doing what is right for the 3 of you, wishing all the luck in the world for your futures.

  22. March 1, 2016 / 10:53 pm

    You both write so honestly, this was such a moving read. I have no doubt that you’ll both make this work out well for yourselves and for Evie – you both write about each other with such a lot of feeling and maturity. Wishing you all the best.

  23. March 1, 2016 / 10:55 pm

    This is really lovely, it is something that I really wish my parents would have figured out. Instead of growing up with happy parents we had to witness all the chaos. Your daughter will thank you one day.

  24. March 1, 2016 / 11:09 pm

    Hi Chloe, I hope you are ok *hugs*. This is so sad and such a gutsy, and beautifully written post. Sometimes life throws in a curve ball or 2, but it’s what you do with them that counts. I don’t doubt for a second that you will find your own way and make a happy future for Evie. Thinking of you xx

  25. March 1, 2016 / 11:14 pm

    What an honest and heartfelt post from both of you. Sending you big hugs and the best of luck moving forward. The older I get the more I feel like the best thing you can ever do is to know yourself and be true to yourself.

  26. March 2, 2016 / 1:01 am

    I can’t believe how brave both of you are to have come to this together and to be there to support each other. Evie is very lucky to have you both as parents. My parents were able to provide me so much more separately then they would have together. Good luck to all three of you as you venture into this new phase of your life journey.

  27. March 2, 2016 / 10:20 am

    It’s a tough decision and I am so glad you are still friends – I have many friends who have separated from their partners and it’s so hard. My Mum and Dad divorced when I was 10 but it was a bitter break up and they didn’t speak for years. You two seem to be doing the mature thing. xx

  28. March 2, 2016 / 3:54 pm

    Coming from a divorced family as well I can say for sure that your daughter is very lucky to have both of you. It sounds like you both have come to a rational decision and your respect for each other will resonate in all you do for her. That is the greatest gift you could give her, whether you stay together or not. Wishing you two all the best,
    Tori
    http://www.themamanurse.com

  29. March 2, 2016 / 4:20 pm

    So sorry to hear this. I went through the same thing a year ago and it was a very difficult time. We coparent now and spend time together on days out etc. It hasn’t been easy and some days I feel I am still adjusting but, like you, it was the best thing to do in our situation. I was really worried how our son would be affected but he’s such a happy little boy and sees the best in both of us. Great that you two are on good terms. My first post on separation wasn’t as level-headed as yours & everything felt so complicated back then but things really do get better. Sending big hugs. If you ever want to talk I’m here 🙂 Polly xx

  30. March 2, 2016 / 5:36 pm

    You’re so brave. To write the post and to make that step forward. As a person from separated parents, it never harmed me and I love the crazy, extended family I now have. Good luck to both of you. You are fabulous parents by the sounds of it!

  31. March 2, 2016 / 8:57 pm

    Such a heartfelt and honest post. I can’t imagine how difficult it must have been to write this post putting everything out on the table and laying your soul bear. But, at the same time it must have been such a releasing post to write, to get out something that you felt you needed to write. It sounds like it has been a very hard decision, but also a very well thought through and considered decision, and most importantly the right decision for you all. X Emily

  32. March 2, 2016 / 9:08 pm

    What a beautiful and poignant post, I can’t even begin to appreciate how hard it must have been for you to write. That said, I have every admiration for you because I’m the product of separated parents who’s relationship was volatile and awful and eventually split when I was 22. I wish with all my heart they’d done it when I was little because I now have no relationship with my dad and haven’t seen him in 14 years. I hate for that to happen to your little girl. You’re absolutely doing the right thing, so very proud of you both x

  33. Claire
    March 3, 2016 / 4:20 pm

    Hello, this is actually the first post of yours I have read! I just wanted to say that two close friends of mine, with kids, decided to seperate then divorce their husbands, and I have never seen them happier now, years on. They went through hell at the time but it really was the best decision. Life goes on, life finds a way, and your little one will grow up to respect you both for it. <3

  34. March 7, 2016 / 6:24 pm

    It sounds you have both put a lot of thought into this decision. It may be hard at times in the future to see how your life and Jamie’s are changing and possibly moving apart more than you planned.
    That said, my parents separated when I was 19 (almost 20 years ago). They stayed together for longer than they should have. But since the split they have got on wonderfully well. They still have a large circle of friends in common and even go on holidays together – with and without us kids. Partners have come and gone and that has brought up and downs to the relationship. But at the end of the day they are still incredibly fond of one another and (although they might not admit it) each other’s best friend.
    I hope you two can achieve something similar.

  35. March 17, 2016 / 12:46 pm

    One of the most touchingly honest posts I have read in a long time. It was lovely to see Jamie’s view in here too and much respect for you both making this brave decision. Best wishes to all your family in the future.

  36. teacuptoria
    August 2, 2016 / 7:08 pm

    Aw Chloe, I’m so sorry to read this. I am just in the process of separating from my husband too. It’s not my son’s father this time, so in many ways it’s easier but in some harder. I thought I’d got my second chance so it’s sad to realise it’s not. As a couple we get on brilliantly but as a family we struggle as my husband doesn’t want the bustling family life I do. I wish you all the luck in the world right now. It’s exciting news about your travel plans, I’d love to do that! Love & hugs Tor xx

Leave a Reply

Life On Instagram
8   76
32   440
10   291
30   303
7   371