Holiday Dad

I recently read an blog post by dungeekin on “Weekend Dad’s” and this is a kind of reply to that.

For reasons I don’t want to go into at the moment, my daughter lives with her mother 160 miles away. She spends most of her school holidays with me, and the occasional weekend in between, and I visit for special occasions. This means the time I do spend with her is very precious, and I want it to be “quality time”. For this reason, and this reason alone, I try to make our time together exciting and fun. If I can put of the mundane ordinary tasks for a day or two, I will. I would rather go out for the day and do something she wants, than spend it at home or in town doing normal everyday stuff.

When she’s here with me in the summer, we spend four weeks together. Obviously it’s not possible to postpone everything during this period, and yes, the normal stuff does happen. But then, if we’re spending that amount of time together, it’s as if we are a “normal” family anyway. But during our weekends, and to some extent half term, things are different.


I feel envious of those separated parents who manage to see their children most weeks. For them, having a normal routine is a good thing. But in my case, and I suspect plenty of others, I don’t have that luxury. Our time together is precious. If we go to a theme park or the cinema, it’s because we want to, not because we have nothing else to do nor because I feel guilty. If I have to to do something which doesn’t involve her, then I feel guilty. Take this week for example. I’m involved in a amateur dramatic group and we’re putting on a show next week. That means this week we’re putting the stage up and rigging the lighting. This will require spending a large amount of time in the hall working. Time which I would rather spend with her. But it’s stuff that needs doing, so I have no choice.


In fact, if my daughter had her way, we’d probably spend all day every day at home just so she can surf the ‘web and play Sims2. I think she’s turning into a geek already!

2 Responses to “Holiday Dad”

  1. Devyl Says:

    I often wonder how my Tween’s father can go months, up to almost a year, without calling her. He rarely, if ever, spends time with Tween – even when I fly her ALL THE WAY across the USA to see him! Mostly, she stays with aunts, uncles, and grandparents while out visiting in California. Then, my exhusband wonders why I won’t give up a Christmas or Thanksgiving holiday on his sudden whim to fly her out. If he’s not going to see her for more than an hour of the time spent out there, why SHOULD I give up a holiday? For that, he can fly out here and spend time with Tween during his layover. Idiot.

    BTW – if he bothered paying the piddly $50/month I have requested in child support, I would gladly give up one holiday a year, even though I know he won’t spend it with her. But until he starts showing he cares by calling her and paying her child support, I don’t trust him to take care of her at all. And no, I’m not withholding anything from him … I had her ready to fly out to Cali for the whole summer, packed her clothes, bought all her necessities, made arrangements on my end … only to find out the day she was supposed to fly out that he changed his mind. And, last Thanskgiving, I flew out to Cali WITH her, to make sure that we BOTH got to see her for the holiday.

    Good to know there ARE fathers out there who choose to spend as much time as possible with their children. I wish my daughter had that luxury.

  2. steaders Says:

    I feel sorry for you Tween.I could never behave in that fashion, and I really struggle to understand how any parent could. My daughter is the most important person in my life. I speak to her on the phone every day, with very few exceptions. But then it wasn’t my decision that she lives 160 miles away. I have the Judge to thank for that.

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