Sorry for the length of this disussion, but I've been trying to make some healthy decisions for my son; however, how does one know what is best for their child? I've been divorced for 8 years now with a soon to be 10 yr old son whom we've had a 50/50 custody up until 1½ months ago. Over the years my relationship with the ex has grown into a hate-hate relationship and this has been really causing problems, especially when dealing with our son.
Through the years there have been many issues with our son where discipline is required with most situations involving dishonesty of various forms. He has done this consistently at both houses; yet, my ex always rationalizes it in some form to believe that none of these instances take place at her house, only at mine. We continuously catch him and discipline always to be told that we are over-the-top by my ex. He's been spanked once with his usual punishment sitting in his room or loss of games/activities. Meanwhile the infractions have become more serious in nature. Counseling was started only to be discontinued when the counselor told my ex that there are things that she needs to change.
The last incident which forced us to ask that my son live with my ex, again is rationalized by her as not a big deal. Although my son understands that he did was wrong and knows that he must apologize to the people that he's hurt through his actions, my ex tells him that he does not need to apologize nor acknowledge his wrongdoing to the people that he has hurt. If he is not made to understand his wrong-doings and 'humbly' acknowledge them how will he learn to accept responsibility for his actions. These are exactly the same actions in my ex wife that forced me to leave her. He seems more inclined to want to live with her where he is not required to be respectful.
Now, my son is not welcome in our house (with my 5 children from my current marraige). I've seriously been considering dropping rights with my son's step-father willing to adopt him; but I'm not sure this is the route that I want to take. I know that my son would be better off with consistency in his life and without the hatred that follows him back and forth between the houses. Later, I figure we can get together when he's older with hopefully a better relationship (if he would want to). I know that the relationship between his mother and myself will only get worse. How do we deal with someone so unreasonable? My wife's ex gets along with us just fine with my step-son benefiting tremendously, so I know divorce situations can work. I just can't get this one to work.