I have sat pondering Vocal and what I would write. Having always been an avid reader and at one point in time writing frequently, the ad really peaked my interest and led to me sign up.
Once I had the ‘thumbs up’ to use the site as my own personal platform along with many others, I drew a blank. There’s so many things that one could express their opinion on these days, yet there I was without the slightest clue. Flash forward and here we are and I am hoping that this story, and the ones to follow, will help someone in similar shoes.
I have been a mother for 7.5 years to an amazing son. He’s kind, loving, stubborn, and very intelligent. And I only get to see all of these amazing traits half of the time.
I was your typical rebellious teenager who thought she knew more of the world and life than she did. I tried to be older than I was and in turn, wanted to date older men. When I was 16, I met Kyle. He was 21, had a car with a system, his parents ran a music club, he was a “Promoter,” and had a lot of things that most young, rebellious teenagers wanted. We started as friends as I lived across the state at the time. Once I moved back what started as friends turned into a fast and furious relationship. It was fun for a time, until I realized that everything that he had to offer me was a mirage. This is when my young self realized that you should never be with someone for materials or status, but that’s another story.
We were together for 8 months and it came to a screeching halt once enough was enough. I found my way back to freedom as a new (17-year-old) woman. I was thrilled. Perhaps this is why our parents tell us to wait until we’re older for relationships, and perhaps we should listen. But I didn’t, and here we are.
My freedom was exhilarating and wonderful and not at all lonely. I felt alive. Then one day I felt really tired. Then came the breast tenderness. The morning sickness. I was pregnant. My freedom was gone in an instant. I was 17 and pregnant. So we tried again, taking leaps and bounds, making decisions and discussing what we should do and we decided to keep our little baby. Grand plans of being a happy little family ensued and I managed to keep the resentment away for awhile, until he still wouldn’t find a job. After that, there was no way in hell that I was going to stick around. I would rather be alone and struggle than be unhappy in a relationship.
He wasn’t around for the pregnancy, didn’t help monetarily, and so I was the bad guy. I will say that he was limited. I put stipulations on things, but I never refused to let him in my life while I carried his child. He would be allowed at doctor's appointments if he wished, but he had to pay the $15 co pay for the doctors visit. I kept in contact with his parents to let them know things about my pregnancy all the way until I was counting my contractions. They knew he was coming. Kyle wasn’t allowed in the room during my delivery. It was MY delivery and it was scary enough at 17 without looking at the person whom you resented the most, while they looked at you in your most vulnerable time. He came that night and saw our beautiful, amazing 6 lbs 3oz, 19 inch long son. He was put on the birth certificate as his father. He was able to be in his life. I even extended shared custody once my son was 3 months old and I wasn’t breastfeeding.
That will always be my biggest regret in life. I should have kept my innocent baby with me. Instead when he was 9 months old, he was stolen from me. Kyle took custody and filed for a court order with no visitation. He didn’t win this, of course, but he sure tried. His loss just further added to his spite for me, but there was nothing he could do about it. Well, except make him having any part of my life a living hell.
He complicated everything. I enrolled our 3-year-old into preschool, he fought it. He fought changing his preschool once I had moved to an adjoining city. He collected welfare benefits and charged me child support.
Let me reiterate the age difference; he is 4 years and 11 months older than me. I was 18 paying a 23-year-old child support on 50-50 custody! $4000 later and I no longer have to pay.
Anyways, he did everything in his power to spite me. Although we had both moved on and he had a new relationship with a woman to take care of him and our son, he has always done everything he could to hurt me.
Now we are both married, have another child each and my husband and I are both successful and live in a beautiful apartment complex on the nice side of town. We own 2 vehicles. Our children have nice clothes and shoes and we get to do fun things (that cost money) together occasionally. Three weeks after we moved into our nice (fairly expensive) apartment, he filed for full physical and legal custody, with only 96 hours of visitation for me. He lied multiple times in the court paperwork, lies that I proved were lies. Can’t anyone guess why he wants full custody now? Just months after he lost his car, lost his phone, lost his job, moved his wife, our son, and himself back into his parents sunroom, just months before the birth of his second son? Any guesses? His spite has gotten too him once more, so now he wants my family, my children to suffer so I can take care of his family.
Tomorrow is our final court date. It’s nerve wrecking, unsettling and has sent me into full-blown panic attacks. I am horrified at the idea of losing my first born. Anyone who has been through this knows the feeling, and I truly hope that nobody else has to go through what I have gone through.
This is my first post and I will continue to elaborate on my story through future posts. Consider this my introduction, I suppose. My aim is to help people learn to cope with their child’s parent through experiences I have lived and things I have learned through others along the way. So stay tuned, whatever it is that we do on Vocal, and I hope to hear your feedback and support.