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    Hello, I'm 21 and my graduation is coming up this July. I am a person who is so focused and passionate on my degree subject, so graduation is meant to be a day where i'll feel the proudest I ever have.... yet I am really beginning to dread it.

    To give you the back story, my dad left my mum in 2013 (nearly 5 years ago now). After 28 years of marriage, he just wasn't happy - and he's such a happy and passionate individual. Growing up, (from what I can remember) I only ever saw them hold hands or kiss once, and that was weird for me! So them getting divorce wasn't a massive shock looking back at it....not for my mum though. She took it very, very badly and now 5 years on still holds on to it. She went through a lot at the time so I completely feel for her. So you know, my dad didn't just abandon the family, he is the biggest comfort and support to me and he is amazing. He is there for me always. He found a lovely woman who he is now happily with and I accepted her instantly as we got along so well. She gives so much love to me and I appreciate her loads. I am never allowed to even mention her name to my mum. Fair enough, she's hurt by all this and I will respect that but I do feel she should make it easier for my brother and I. I think sometimes she forgets that we are not part of the divorce, she thinks my dad has affected my life so much, when in fact her attitude towards it (5 years later) is the only thing that affects me, and she fails to see this.

    My dads' partner has been in my life for 3 years now, throughout my entire degree and I feel she deserves to me there on my graduation as much as my parents to - and I also would love for her to be there. I have been going back and forth in my mind now for months about how to plan the day, who to have my celebration meal with, so I can make it comfortable for everyone and not have them be at the same place at the same time. This is causing to be very stressful for me.

    I have automatically chosen to have the celebration meal with my mum as that's how it always is for every celebration. She gets the better part of it because she is so affected by this divorce, but actually the person who's helped me most throughout my degree has been my father and I feel hurt that i have to put him down to make my mum happy. My dad has no problem in stepping back if it will make the situation easier for me.

    So you are aware, my mum now has a boyfriend, has moved into a new house, has got a promotion, (is getting plenty of money from my dad) and goes on regular holiday with her girl friends. She is doing better than ever. Her new boyfriend has actually left two past relationships to begin a relationship with a new woman. He also has children. Yet she holds the biggest grudge against my dad leaving her and also getting with a new woman.

    Now i'll come to what's put me in a pickle - my mum doesn't want my dad's partner there. She has constantly upset me this week, and is actually majorly distracting me from my degree, because she has to make a comment every day about how my dad's partner has no place at my graduation and keeps making me feel bad about it. This is hurting me like crazy. I have tried to calmly explain how its my day and i get to choose who i want there and i'm doing everything I can to make it easy for everyone, but she will not stop. She even says how do I not see I am upsetting her and not caring about her side, but she's not seeing how she keeps upsetting me. I lost my temper today with her so i've come here to get advice from anyone who has experienced anything like this.
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    (Original post by 2018graduate)
    Hello, I'm 21 and my graduation is coming up this July. I am a person who is so focused and passionate on my degree subject, so graduation is meant to be a day where i'll feel the proudest I ever have.... yet I am really beginning to dread it.

    To give you the back story, my dad left my mum in 2013 (nearly 5 years ago now). After 28 years of marriage, he just wasn't happy - and he's such a happy and passionate individual. Growing up, (from what I can remember) I only ever saw them hold hands or kiss once, and that was weird for me! So them getting divorce wasn't a massive shock looking back at it....not for my mum though. She took it very, very badly and now 5 years on still holds on to it. She went through a lot at the time so I completely feel for her. So you know, my dad didn't just abandon the family, he is the biggest comfort and support to me and he is amazing. He is there for me always. He found a lovely woman who he is now happily with and I accepted her instantly as we got along so well. She gives so much love to me and I appreciate her loads. I am never allowed to even mention her name to my mum. Fair enough, she's hurt by all this and I will respect that but I do feel she should make it easier for my brother and I. I think sometimes she forgets that we are not part of the divorce, she thinks my dad has affected my life so much, when in fact her attitude towards it (5 years later) is the only thing that affects me, and she fails to see this.

    My dads' partner has been in my life for 3 years now, throughout my entire degree and I feel she deserves to me there on my graduation as much as my parents to - and I also would love for her to be there. I have been going back and forth in my mind now for months about how to plan the day, who to have my celebration meal with, so I can make it comfortable for everyone and not have them be at the same place at the same time. This is causing to be very stressful for me.

    I have automatically chosen to have the celebration meal with my mum as that's how it always is for every celebration. She gets the better part of it because she is so affected by this divorce, but actually the person who's helped me most throughout my degree has been my father and I feel hurt that i have to put him down to make my mum happy. My dad has no problem in stepping back if it will make the situation easier for me.

    So you are aware, my mum now has a boyfriend, has moved into a new house, has got a promotion, (is getting plenty of money from my dad) and goes on regular holiday with her girl friends. She is doing better than ever. Her new boyfriend has actually left two past relationships to begin a relationship with a new woman. He also has children. Yet she holds the biggest grudge against my dad leaving her and also getting with a new woman.

    Now i'll come to what's put me in a pickle - my mum doesn't want my dad's partner there. She has constantly upset me this week, and is actually majorly distracting me from my degree, because she has to make a comment every day about how my dad's partner has no place at my graduation and keeps making me feel bad about it. This is hurting me like crazy. I have tried to calmly explain how its my day and i get to choose who i want there and i'm doing everything I can to make it easy for everyone, but she will not stop. She even says how do I not see I am upsetting her and not caring about her side, but she's not seeing how she keeps upsetting me. I lost my temper today with her so i've come here to get advice from anyone who has experienced anything like this.
    I see the dilemma and wounds havent healed.
    Dies her bf want to go?
    Get 2 sets of tickets so they can be apart?
    Spend 60% of the time with your mum.
    Have a celebration dinner with your mum and father in a different day,
    I would not like someone dictating to me, but it appears your mum is either vulnerable or manipulative enough to try and make you feel guilty. Sounds like the other woman knows how to take a back seat and its not even as tough she caused the split as she came later. There seems to be some denial from your mum that she has moved on.

    Maybe get your dads gf a ticket on her own and put your parents together just for the ceremony.? Tbh I think it is a bit stupid. Your mum cant expect your dad never to be with someone.

    I would be focused on your exams at the moment.
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    As upsetting as it may be for your mum, this is a celebration of your achievements, not anyone else's, so she needs to leave her feelings aside and put you first. Your happiness is of paramount importance here, this is your day. If you want your dad and his partner to be there she's just got to respect it. Graduations are huge, busy, buzzing atmospheres so it would be very easy for your mum to avoid your dad if she so wishes.

    As for the meal, perhaps you could have two? One on the day of the graduation and one sometime after?
 
 
 
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