Divorce: When Dads are left to raise the kids alone

I know this may seem stupid and petty but it bothers me nonetheless. I’m sharing this in the hopes that there’s someone out there who sits up while reading this and can relate. 

As time has gone on since my wife left, I stopped wearing my wedding band.  I don’t think I’ve worn it in almost 9 months. 



When I go out with the kids, especially on the weekend, people make the assumption that I’m visiting with my kids, rather than my kids live with me and we’re just going out to do something.

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How do I know these assumptions are being made? I know this because people have actually approached me over the last year to say something about the kids and say something like it must be Daddy’s weekend with the kids.



These comments aren’t mean spirited in nature and I understand why the assumption is made.

I’m in a less common situation in the sense that I think most times the Dad isn’t the one raising the kids alone, unless the Mother has passed away.

People just assume that I’m visiting with my kids on the weekend because I’m not wearing a wedding ring and we’re out together.  That’s all I can figure. 

Read This  AWESOME NEWS: I feel like a pretty awesome Dad tonight

Maybe it’s just those few people who have said something and again, they weren’t malicious in nature. 

I just hadn’t thought about that until these occurrences and now I feel like everyone is thinking that I only visit with my kids or I’m a part time Dad. 

The reason I think it bothers me is because I don’t even know how to be a part time Dad. I’m in the trenches every day and wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world.  Fatherhood is something I take very seriously.

I also get that everyone’s situation is different and maybe that’s what some Dad are best suited for but that’s not me and I hate that people even think that. 

Like I said, I know it’s stupid but it’s something that’s been eating away at me over the last year and I just thought I would share a little bit of what I’m feeling when it comes to this whole divorce stuff. 

Guys aren’t best known for their sharing of feelings and when it comes to divorce, I don’t know the statistics but I’ve always had the impression that the husbands were often the cause of the divorce.

I guess I want to illustrate that it’s not always that way and sometimes the husband is the one blindsided. 

Read This  This really sucks 

Maybe there’s other guys out there that thought they were the only ones going through something like this.  Maybe there are other guys left putting the pieces back together and raising the kids alone after the wife/Mother walks away. 

Either way, I hope at minimum, I can show how the roles can sometimes be reversed and the Dad’s can find themselves in a position, more typically thought of to be the Mother’s. 

It’s really is a strange place to find oneself because most people who can relate to what I’m going through are the Mom’s left putting the pieces back together and raising the kids alone. 

I feel a strong kinship with all the single Mom’s out there kicking ass everyday.  It would just be nice to hear from the Dad’s who are in the same boat.

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25 Comments on "Divorce: When Dads are left to raise the kids alone"

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Ellen Beck
Member
I think you get that more perhaps because there are more single Moms out there and the parents have never been married. Really, the vast majority of single Moms I know have children minus a husband. It’s like the guys just drop and go or have to be forced to show up which is sad. Maybe it is where I live, but the divorced folks I know almost all have shared custody (meaning half and half) I know many Dads out there who do their part if they were married but very few if they werent. Its kind of odd,… Read more »
Rob Gorski
Guest

Thanks.. I really appreciate it..

Ellen Beck
Member
I think you get that more perhaps because there are more single Moms out there and the parents have never been married. Really, the vast majority of single Moms I know have children minus a husband. It’s like the guys just drop and go or have to be forced to show up which is sad. Maybe it is where I live, but the divorced folks I know almost all have shared custody (meaning half and half) I know many Dads out there who do their part if they were married but very few if they werent. Its kind of odd,… Read more »
Rob Gorski
Guest

Thanks.. I really appreciate it..

MBee
Guest
Maybe it is a reflection on the cultural norm. Moms takes kids on errands, Dads don’t. My (ring-wearing) hubby was asked the same question when the kids were younger. It is your weekend with the boys. Your response could be something like…”Yes. Even though they live with me, I miss them when they visit their Mom.” or “Yes, even though they are with me full-time, I look forward to our trips to the store.” It could be an opportunity to not only open peoples eyes to non-typical situations but also to validate your relationship with them without diminishing the one… Read more »
Rob Gorski
Guest

Great advice..

Kim Gebhardt
Guest

I think it’s 50/50 when it comes to which person ’caused’ the divorce. I wouldn’t worry too much about people assuming you’re a weekend dad. I can see where the assumption would be annoying, but as long as you know what’s going on and what the real story is, who cares what strangers think? Also, women tend to check for wedding rings on men when they’re single and looking. Mentioning ‘Daddy’s weekend’ might be their way of sizing up the situation.

MBee
Guest
Maybe it is a reflection on the cultural norm. Moms takes kids on errands, Dads don’t. My (ring-wearing) hubby was asked the same question when the kids were younger. It is your weekend with the boys. Your response could be something like…”Yes. Even though they live with me, I miss them when they visit their Mom.” or “Yes, even though they are with me full-time, I look forward to our trips to the store.” It could be an opportunity to not only open peoples eyes to non-typical situations but also to validate your relationship with them without diminishing the one… Read more »
Rob Gorski
Guest

Great advice..

MBee
Guest
Maybe it is a reflection on the cultural norm. Moms takes kids on errands, Dads don’t. My (ring-wearing) hubby was asked the same question when the kids were younger. It is your weekend with the boys. Your response could be something like…”Yes. Even though they live with me, I miss them when they visit their Mom.” or “Yes, even though they are with me full-time, I look forward to our trips to the store.” It could be an opportunity to not only open peoples eyes to non-typical situations but also to validate your relationship with them without diminishing the one… Read more »
Rob Gorski
Guest

Great advice..

Kim Gebhardt
Guest

I think it’s 50/50 when it comes to which person ’caused’ the divorce. I wouldn’t worry too much about people assuming you’re a weekend dad. I can see where the assumption would be annoying, but as long as you know what’s going on and what the real story is, who cares what strangers think? Also, women tend to check for wedding rings on men when they’re single and looking. Mentioning ‘Daddy’s weekend’ might be their way of sizing up the situation.

Kim Gebhardt
Guest

I think it’s 50/50 when it comes to which person ’caused’ the divorce. I wouldn’t worry too much about people assuming you’re a weekend dad. I can see where the assumption would be annoying, but as long as you know what’s going on and what the real story is, who cares what strangers think? Also, women tend to check for wedding rings on men when they’re single and looking. Mentioning ‘Daddy’s weekend’ might be their way of sizing up the situation.

Rob Gorski
Guest

Thanks Karalyn.. I agree that the number of single Mom’s is unbalanced. I not really proud of my gender because guys should man up but unfortunately, that’s not always the case.

Rob Gorski
Guest

Thanks Karalyn.. I agree that the number of single Mom’s is unbalanced. I not really proud of my gender because guys should man up but unfortunately, that’s not always the case.

Rob Gorski
Guest

Thanks Karalyn.. I agree that the number of single Mom’s is unbalanced. I not really proud of my gender because guys should man up but unfortunately, that’s not always the case.

Jimmy Rock
Guest
I get this too sometimes when I’m out with my kids, even though I’m (quite happily) married. It doesn’t bother me though. I’m not all that interested in a stranger’s misguided perception based upon seeing a guy out with his kids. My pet peeve, though, is when people refer to a father with his kids as “babysitting”. Uh, sorry, I don’t “babysit” my own kids. But I will say, as someone else already commented, that sometimes women will make a comment to a guy who’s out with his kids as a sign of interest. From my experience, some women find… Read more »
Alyssa Rogers Williams
Guest
It’s so easy to have this happen, I sympathize. I have severe migraines and we travel nationally for our daughter’s tennis tournaments and despite vigilance have had pharmacy and/or Doctor’s office not follow through on occasions. I just had to have my husband pick up a transfer in the early hours from Dallas to Tucson (love the CVS app) because shorted one precious pill (non narcotic migraine triptan). I have one neurotypical child and a hell of a lot less on my plate. No matter how vigilant, things can slip through the cracks. Shit happens. Should I have counted? Yep.… Read more »
Kim Gebhardt
Guest
Alyssa, the martyrdom comment came from his initial response to me ‘apologizing’ for ‘not living up to my expectations’. That said, I understand that mistakes happen and sometimes all the things people are trying to keep up with get out of hand, but taking care of the boys is Rob’s job. I don’t mean that it’s his job because he’s their father, I mean it in the literal sense. He says he quit his paying profession to be a stay at home parent and take care of Lizze and the boys, yet this is the second mistake in regards to… Read more »
Alyssa Rogers Williams
Guest
Sorry, didn’t see this earlier, we’ve been traveling. Like I’ve said before you echo what I’m thinking quite a lot in your comments…many times I don’t comment because you’ve already elucidated what I’m thinking already, lol, but I still think this fits in the “shit happens” category. I get a little pissy and blame the pharmacist too when I’m shorted on my precious and (even with insurance) crazy expensive migraine medication. Four pills with my insurance are $50 instead of ….drum roll…$2,300…..(this is how f’d up our healthcare system is now more than ever) . I peeked, thought I had… Read more »
Rob Gorski
Guest
I was thinking about this last night. Here’s the reality. When a person is dealing with a very challenging situation and it’s sometimes all they can do to get hough the day, that person becomes reliant on everyone to play their part. If the doctors office is supposed to have sent in 3 months worth of medication to the pharmacy and it turns out that they don’t this time, it throws everything off. There are so many moving pieces in my daily life and there’s zero chance that I can stay on top of everything all the time. I have… Read more »
Kim Gebhardt
Guest

I know you think I’m being a wretched bitch these days and maybe I am, but I have an honest question.

When you drop the boys off at school, what do you do with your day? I know Gavin is at home with you, but he seems pretty low maintenance these days. I am sincerely curious what fills your days, because reading the blog makes it sound like, unless there’s a doctor’s appointment, you go walk the track (or the treadmill when it was working) and then go home and nap.

Ellen Beck
Member

Keep calling so there is a history of calls and make sure you mention the exact street address

Rob Gorski
Guest

Kim, you have a happy New Year… ☺

Kim Gebhardt
Guest

Good luck. I never felt better than when I worked out 4 or 5 times a week. Do you have pics of when you were a bodybuilder?

Kim Gebhardt
Guest

I hope you and the boys have a happy and safe New Year.

Jimmy Rock
Guest
I get this too sometimes when I’m out with my kids, even though I’m (quite happily) married. It doesn’t bother me though. I’m not all that interested in a stranger’s misguided perception based upon seeing a guy out with his kids. My pet peeve, though, is when people refer to a father with his kids as “babysitting”. Uh, sorry, I don’t “babysit” my own kids. But I will say, as someone else already commented, that sometimes women will make a comment to a guy who’s out with his kids as a sign of interest. From my experience, some women find… Read more »
Jimmy Rock
Guest
I get this too sometimes when I’m out with my kids, even though I’m (quite happily) married. It doesn’t bother me though. I’m not all that interested in a stranger’s misguided perception based upon seeing a guy out with his kids. My pet peeve, though, is when people refer to a father with his kids as “babysitting”. Uh, sorry, I don’t “babysit” my own kids. But I will say, as someone else already commented, that sometimes women will make a comment to a guy who’s out with his kids as a sign of interest. From my experience, some women find… Read more »
Leslie
Guest
My dad was left to raise my siblings and I, there were 3 of us and I was the oldest at 7, followed by a 5 year old and a 3 year old. This was in 1993, people weren’t all that awesome to him. I had so many friends that weren’t allowed to sleep over, let a lone come.over, because clearly my mom must have left because he was THAT bad. Makes no sense but that’s what people thought. It’s not easy being a single parent, but I think single dad’s get stigmatized unfairly and while people currently are more… Read more »
Leslie
Guest
My dad was left to raise my siblings and I, there were 3 of us and I was the oldest at 7, followed by a 5 year old and a 3 year old. This was in 1993, people weren’t all that awesome to him. I had so many friends that weren’t allowed to sleep over, let a lone come.over, because clearly my mom must have left because he was THAT bad. Makes no sense but that’s what people thought. It’s not easy being a single parent, but I think single dad’s get stigmatized unfairly and while people currently are more… Read more »
Leslie
Guest
My dad was left to raise my siblings and I, there were 3 of us and I was the oldest at 7, followed by a 5 year old and a 3 year old. This was in 1993, people weren’t all that awesome to him. I had so many friends that weren’t allowed to sleep over, let a lone come.over, because clearly my mom must have left because he was THAT bad. Makes no sense but that’s what people thought. It’s not easy being a single parent, but I think single dad’s get stigmatized unfairly and while people currently are more… Read more »