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This probably won't help much, but I am a 34 year old version of your daughter. I can remember that game myself. The crying was solely for Dad, so that he doesn't forget to come get us next time. (If he thinks we miss him, we may get to see him more often...)

My parents divorced when I was just under 3. I actually remember vividly the day we moved out.

Dad was also a DN, (with more similarities to yours then I really want to mention) and when we lived 2 towns away, we'd see him for maybe an hour once a month, if that. He'd take us to the park, fair, movie, or something fun to make up for the weekends he missed. Visitation was supposed to be every other weekend, but he'd always have a date, forget, or have his parents pick us up. (Sound familiar?)

When we moved 2 states away, and he had us on Xmas and during the summer, he was no longer the 'Fun Dad'.

Both my brother and I knew our Dad was a DN from a very early age, and would work to try to change things with him by our outbursts, or emotions. It didn't really help though.

Mom was our 'rock', and her home was always 'Home' to both of us, even if we'd just spent the summer at Dad's, his house was never home.

I'm sure that Mom felt the same as you.

I just wanted to let you know that even with what my DB & I did to get some attention from our Dad, didn't mean that we didn't know that Mom was unconditional love, and our safety and security.

Mom never once said anything bad about Dad until we were grown. By then, we'd always expressed that we knew he was an 'A$$hole Dad', so she wasn't saying anything about him that we hadn't already figured out ourselves.

We both have a relationship with him now, but it didn't happen until our late 20's on for both of us, it is now a relationship on our own terms.

Right now, your kids are trying their best to make DN a better Daddy. They wish they could convince him to be a good man, and the game is just that, for his sake.

This probably won't help your sadness, but know that you are doing the best for them, even if you aren't as fun.


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