Holiday Time

This morning, I was stupid.

It’s my holiday parenting time. Martin Luther King Jr. Day is for me this year, and I get to have my kids from this morning at 9am until tomorrow night at 6pm.

I thought it was Presidents’ Day.

And if it was Presidents’ Day, my time would’ve gone from 6pm today until 6pm tomorrow. I don’t know why it’s 9am for one and 6pm for the other. But it’s in the papers, so we’re doing it. And I’m not arguing.

So I texted my ex around 9:30am to tell him that I’d be picking up the kids for Presidents’ Day at 6pm this evening, as it states in our plan.

He texted me back at 11am to tell me that I’d forfeited my time with our children.

I sat there in shock for a minute.

So I took a photo of our parenting plan and sent it to him. The plan shows that Presidents’ Day starts at 6pm tonight.

He responded that I proved his point exactly. Because it’s not Presidents’ Day.

I said, what? Oh, no. I’m so sorry. Can I please come out and pick them up, anyway? I took off work tomorrow because I want to spend time with them. I’ll leave here right now and be out there for them. Please. 

When I got to his house, he kept his door cracked and talked to me with one eye.

He said something like, did you see my text? Because I responded that you can’t have them. We’re going to follow this plan. You’re the one who wants to follow the plan so badly. Not me. I’m just trying to be a reasonable person here. I’m just trying to get along. I don’t even know why we’re in court. And this plan is ridiculous. We ought to be able to sit down at the BC Grill like two normal, reasonable adults and come up with our own plan. We ought to be able to do that. But you can’t take them today, no don’t interrupt me… you forfeited your time, and you can’t take them now. We’re going to follow this plan. But like I said, we ought to be able to get along. And we ought to be able to sit down like two reasonable people at the BC Grill and work this out ourselves. Because this plan is ridiculous. I don’t even know why we’re in court. It’s too expensive. I know it may be nothing to you, but it’s expensive for me. And I’d rather spend the money on a vacation with the kids or something. I’d like to do something nice for the kids with that money. So I don’t know why we’re paying these stupid attorneys and this Guardian ad litem—what a freak—and I really don’t think they’re going to do us any good, I really don’t, so I don’t know why… now don’t interrupt me, you have to let other people talk sometimes… so I don’t know why we’re still going at it like this. I really think we ought to sit down at the BC Grill and work out our own plan. But in the meantime, you can’t violate the agreement like this, and you always expect me to bend the rules—you just can’t follow the rules—and so you’re not getting the kids today. Now I’ll be nice and let you pick them up in the morning when I go to work. See, that’s because I know how to get along—now wait a minute, I told you I’m not letting them go with you now. Today’s not the holiday, anyway, and stop interrupting me. You’re not getting them today, you should take this as a lesson and think about karma a little. You can’t always bend the rules to your liking. You can’t always expect me to give you what you want. You always do that. So I’ll try to work with you, and you can get them tomorrow. But no, you’re not getting them tonight at six. No, you’re not picking them up now. I don’t care if you’re sorry or if you screwed up the holidays. That’s your problem. But when you’re ready to be reasonable, then let me know. Because I’d really like to sit down at the BC Grill and write out our own plan like two reasonable adults. So I’ll see you in the morning at nine. Eight? I guess so. I said goodbye.

Then you’ll go home.

Before you get there, you’ll receive two texts.

It is clear that u believe that u don’t have to abide by the rules. U stated many times that this is our new agreement.

I will work w u on this. U can pick them up in the morning at 9am since u took the day off.

You will respond:

Wait, we agreed to 8am just a couple of minutes ago.

He will not respond.

You will feel lucky that you get to have them at all.

(Lesson: when you’re being alienated, there’s no room for stupid mistakes.)


Published by: H.G. Beverly

H.G. Beverly is a psychotherapist and author who is fascinated by the development of strong characters through difficult relationships. She has unique expertise in personality disorders and offers readers an insider's view of intimate life with psychopaths, sociopaths, and narcissists. Sometimes dark, sometimes ecstatic, her writing explores the full spectrum of what it means to love people who fool and hurt you—and how to rise again to love people who don't. Find her at

Categories Alienation, Autobiography, DivorceTags, , , , , , , 7 Comments

7 thoughts on “Holiday Time”

  1. Wow: these words could come out of my ex’s mouth. He expects from me what he refuses to do himself, yet accuses me. His words are well-measured and his demeanor is calm (or robot-like) except for the tic that runs from one corner of his mouth down his chin to his neck. He will attack me and when I point out how his own life is what contains whatever he accuses me of, he says, “I’m not here to talk about (the very subject he brought up).”

    1. I’ll post more of these. I have a bunch of our monologue-dialogues in my book… I think you’d probably scream if you read them all. Just from recognizing the patterns of your own experience.

      1. I wish I had kept more of my tormentors emails (not that that would have made a difference since false claims, not hard evidence, is what holds up in family court), but they were so hateful I deleted many. Plus, they were full of lies about me. Maybe he was trying to convince me or it was simply him projecting himself — which he does almost constantly. The saddest thing is I’m certain he’d rather my precious child completely destroy herself rather than have a relationship with me. I will be sure to buy your book & try to get a copy to her. I’m so worried about her for reasons I can’t say here to respect her privacy & protect her from retaliation.

      2. Thank you… And you know, I’m guessing that your ex can be very charming when people are watching? And I’m also guessing that court felt more like a traumatizing round of gossip and lies than a place of justice. So you went in looking for one thing and were shocked by what you got. I’m just guessing. It’s like a mocking horror show, isn’t it.

      3. Yes — any man who can secure 5 wives by the age of 50 is obviously a charmer (hello, judge, therapist??? Here’s your sign). I was shocked & traumatized. I could not believe it. The situation seemed crazy. I questioned myself, but his former business partners & his history that came out really allowed me to keep a sane perspective in the insane world he seems to be able to draw others in. The one consolation of others believing him was that I did not feel like a complete idiot for having married him! But my fear for my daughter has affected my health — my everything. I thought of how the world & allies dismissed even photos of the Holocaust. They said the Holocaust was too horrible to be real.

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