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Co-parenting and Why My Husband Has to Share Me

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Now with a title like, “Why My Husband Has To Share Me With Another Man“, I’m sure you are already reading this and wondering what the heck is going on over at that house. 

After I got home from going out to dinner recently my husband asked such a simple yet powerful question that really got me thinking, so I thought I would give you a little insight into our family. 

The question he asked was, “How was family dinner?” I know that question may not seem all that deep to you, but it holds a lot of meaning in our blended family. Let me explain our co-parenting situation and why my husband has to share me with another man. 

What exactly is co-parenting?

Co-parenting is the shared experience of raising a child despite not being married or in a relationship together.  

See, my son’s father, Rick, and I haven’t been in a relationship since not too long after our son Reece was born (about 15 years). Before Reece came along we were together for about 6 years, from when I was only 17 years old.

I married my husband Keith when Reece was 3 years old.  In full disclosure Keith was always aware of and a huge proponent of my relationship with Rick, as he only ever wants the best for Reece too. 

Why does my husband have to share me?

When Reece was younger he used to stay with his Dad every other weekend, but as he got older and started going to school, became involved in sports, extra curricular activities and developed a social life, it became harder for Reece to stay with Rick, since we live about 45 minutes away from each other. 

Instead of Rick getting upset and us arguing over time with Reece, or trying to keep up with some schedule that might not be beneficial for our son, we decided that the three of us would meet for family dinner every week.

This would give us a chance, especially now that we are parenting a teen, to talk with him about school, sports, friends, and just whatever is on his mind together as a family, so he knows we are both always there to support and love him, even though we aren’t together.

Co-parenting with my ex on Father's Day

How do you have a good co-parenting relationship?

I will admit that after Rick and I first split up there was a lot of tension, anger and hurt feelings, which took a couple of years to work through.

The one thing we always had in common and put first was our unconditional love and complete admiration for our son Reece, which is why we are able to co parent so well together. 

We both agreed a long time ago that we may not be in a relationship, but we want Reece to know that we are always going to be family. 

Family dinner and various outings (like this surprise vacation for our son) have become such a ritual in our blended family, and sometimes even my daughter Tatum joins us. Rick loves her as if she was his own daughter and she adores him right on back.

Co-parenting vacation to Universal Studios Florida

Why My Husband Has To Share Me With Another Man

Coparenting with my ex at Dutch Wonderland

Rick, our son Reece and my daughter Tatum at Dutch Wonderland.

I love when people see our family out together (me, Keith, Rick, Reece and Tatum), and we all get some good laughs while watching other people try to figure out our weird family dynamic.

People are even more surprised when they discover that Rick and Keith are actually friends. 

How do you deal with co-parenting?

The truth behind my smile and how I deal with co-parenting is that life is like a roller coaster ride. There are ups and downs, and at times it’s tough to find balance.

Life isn’t always what you think, plan or sometimes even want it to be. I also never planned on having a child as early in life as I did, not being married and having to co-parent.

Co-parenting is not always easy, but Rick is my best friend and I am so happy that we are able to raise our son surrounded in complete support, positivity and love. 

Co-parenting at cadet camp pickup

Rick and I sending Reece off to a week away at Cadet Camp. 

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sunphant

Saturday 20th of May 2017

I got tearful reading this. I applaud you and your family for making the effort that you have. I am a single mom and I co-parented for years...but it was not easy. It was easier when the boys were from 5 to about 14 years of age. Truth be told...then their dad started changing back into his selfish ways. For the next 2 years, if he saw them it was when I brought them to him (almost 3 hours away). Yes, sports and work and other things began to interfered with the every other weekend arrangement, but I was the one putting in the effort to keep them together. And at the time, I didn't even realize it. My sons brought it to my attention. They said dad hasn't been down her in over 2 years. So I made (dad) aware of it and all of a sudden he was down our way. But that was short lived. The boys are not as close with their father as I had hoped they would be now that they are young adults. Their father has been a big disappointment. But we have each other and we keep on striving! So happy for you and your family and may you continue to be blessed.

Clarissa

Sunday 21st of May 2017

Thank you for your sweet words. I am sending you a big hug momma and please know that you are doing great.

Tinsel & Tine

Saturday 20th of May 2017

My brother has the same kinda thing going on. He and C, the mother of my nephew, broke up when my nephew was about 4 years old. C then got back together with her HS sweetheart, J. They married and had 2 more children, only J had 2 kids from a previous relationship. My brother not only remains a big part of his son's life, but the lives of C & J and all the kids. In fact, he and J will take all 5 kids out without C and have a great time!

I'm close to the other children and just consider them all my nieces and nephews.

marylenaburg

Saturday 20th of May 2017

Co-Parenting is tough. In my family, it's his kids, my kid and our kid. So it's the Brady Bunch +1 kinda. So, with all 5 kids, an ex husband and an ex wife - stepping on eachother's toes is bound to happen. All I can say is time, patience and a lot of hugs. xo