I remember reading Lauren’s blog, My Life Incomplete, for the first time and marveling at the relationship she has not only with her ex but also with his girlfriend. As she puts it, it’s ‘the icing on my divorce cake.’ When I got the chance to interview her for my blog, I had to ask her if her having a boyfriend had changed the dynamics. From what she said, I’d have to say, they have a very unusual relationship but I’ll let Lauren tell you and then you can judge…
On my side, everything is great. I have a really good relationship with my ex-husband. I actually like him. He’s a great guy. He and I were just really young when we met and I don’t think I knew myself as an adult yet. Once I started to figure myself out, it wasn’t the right fit for me.
We are both happier being divorced. We never had a miserable marriage so it was kind of hard to split at first but once we both got our lives started, it was easier. Now we like each other.
We get together on holidays. We’ll bend over backwards to help the other out in terms of “can you watch him on my day because I have this going on?” We get together at our son’s events and we throw his birthday parties jointly. We’re friends and I am actually friends with my ex’s girlfriend too.
She and I have a monthly day out with my son where we’ll take him to do something fun. We’ll go get a bite to eat and see a movie and he really enjoys it.
My son absolutely adores my boyfriend. There’s no confusion. He doesn’t see him as a father figure because his dad is still in his life. My son understands what everyone’s role is. He calls my boyfriend his best friend – it’s adorable. My boyfriend taught him how to spell his name one weekend because he turned it into a song. My son went to school on Monday and spell his name for his teacher. When I picked him up that afternoon she told me he’d said, “Yeah, my best friend is grown up. He taught me how to spell my name.” It was so cute.
Obviously, my boyfriend really likes my son . And now, my boyfriend and my ex are friends from the parties we’ve had. They’ll have a beer together, watch the Bears’ game and laugh. It’s almost disgusting. I’m sure it makes people want to throw up but really we all get along nicely and we’re a fun group.
The part that’s not so good is we have difficulty on my boyfriend’s side. He and his ex don’t get along well. She lives an hour and a half away with his kids and it’s in the opposite direction to me which is unfortunate. I don’t have a relationship with his kids but we’re hoping that will come in the future.
You have agree that what Lauren has here is pretty unusual. With their son being just four years old, Lauren and her ex have many years of co-parenting in front of them and getting along like this, should make life much easier for everyone.
When I was in the process of splitting up with my ex, I went with him to his therapist. My ex was struggling to accept that I wanted to end the marriage and I thought it might help if I talked to his therapist. His therapist had been divorced and had the same sort of relationship with his ex as Lauren has with hers. Even with adult children, the therapist still had ski days with his ex.
My ex and I do not have that relationship and honestly, I don’t think I would be comfortable with such a close relationship. Maybe that’s why we don’t. However, we are able to agree on most parenting issues, we do support each other on discipline issues and I’ll take that any day.