Why can't my child forget the men I've dated?

I’m prepping my six-year-old son for Johnny Id’s visit in just under two weeks.

Perhaps I haven’t mentioned it, but I’m totally putting Johnny through his paces when he first arrives. It’s not meant to be test, since it’s driven by a schedule I am loath to change, but I suppose it has turned out that way.

He arrives on Friday. We will have the night and next morning alone together.

Saturday mid-day we will go to my Mom and Step-Dad’s house to pick up my son (they have him overnight every Friday). So we will be there for a few hours together, perhaps for a meal. Yeah, I know…within 24 hours and the poor guy will meet three of my most important family members. No pressure.

Sunday is the day I drop my son off to my ex’s house, so yup, Johnny will meet my ex husband.

Feel free to email him your sympathies – my contact page has his email address.

So all that to say, I thought it was important I start talking to my son about this guy, so it’s not completely weird.

I had mentioned a couple of times that I had a friend named Johnny that lived in such-and-such, and that he’s coming to visit. But I needed to take it up a notch, and here’s how it went:

  • Me: Honey, you know how I’ve been telling you about my friend Johnny and how he’s coming to visit?
  • Him: Yes Mummy.
  • Me: Well, he’s a special friend of mine and he’s going to stay with us for a little bit. You will first meet him when we pick you up from Nana’s house. He’s a special friend to me like Colleen is to your Daddy.
  • Him: Okay, Mummy.

There’s a long pause.

  • Him: Mummy?
  • Me: Yes?
  • Him: What about the man with the big hat who cooked us all that pasta sauce?
  • Me (inside voice): are you fucking kidding me? He remembers the Giant who he met for all of 2 hours?
  • Me (outside voice): What about him?
  • Him: Was he a special friend too?
  • Me: No honey, he was just a regular friend.

Now, before you judge, what the heck would you have said to him?!

I have to keep in mind that he will keep everything in that little vault of his. Things will get reported back to his father, my nanny, my Mom, and random strangers, most likely. I’m glad that the Giant is the only man he’s ever met; knowing just how much he retains is a good reminder for me to treat any interaction with caution.

Johnny will be the first that has spent any amount of time with him. He has his own child so I’m not inherently worried. He and my son have already “met” each other a couple of times via Skype. It’s important that they both like each other, frankly.

My son and I had another great conversation when I tried to tackle sleeping arrangements…but that will wait for another day.
Image Source: http://www.hdwpapers.com/bank_vault_3d_wallpaper_hd-wallpapers.html

0 thoughts on “Why can't my child forget the men I've dated?

  1. Children are like sponges every word they will pick up. And they draw out a one plus one very quickly.
    It made me smile when your son asked you that question. I think I might not have had a better answer.

    Keep on smiling and he will probably throw a curve ball at some point. Like why he came alone?
    have a good time.

  2. I love your son already! I have one with a huge vault as well–he pulls out memories and historical facts when one least expects it. I can’t wait to hear about the sleeping arrangements discussion.
    Have a great weekend with your sweet (big and little) men. Xo

      • I will definitely check Johnny out as I hadn’t read that story yet. I got caught up in NIM and actually had to walk away for a bit. You’re probably not surprised to know that your words often hit close to home in a variety of ways.
        I’ll be back, I promise! xo

  3. That was the hardest part of dating for me, too, after my divorce. My kiddos and their well being was always the first thing on my mind. Because, as you’ve discovered, little ones are sponges for not necessarily wanted information. 😉

    • Oh yes, my son is pretty sensitive and as we are learning, perceptive as well. So yes, his well being comes first…but I also recognize he may never want to share me.

    • Thanks, Beatnik!! I guess in this one small case it’s better that there is no temptation to have Johnny around all the time…because he’s so far away. There is no choice but to ease him into it.

  4. Oh boy! I never even thought of that additional challenge with the visit … making it go all smooth for your child. This is gonna make for good reading I’m sure. Hugs

  5. My son randomly asked not long ago if we could go see “brad.” I was taken aback because we broke up two years ago and Owen was only around him a couple of times while we dated. Then again he is the only man Owen has been introduced to since my split in 2008 when he was not quite two so I guess that has more to do with it than anything. I love how kids’ minds work though and it sounds like you have a smart cookie!

    • I do believe it has something to do with them having less “stuff” in their brains. It’s amazing to me what my son remembers. Sounds like you have a great story about that too!!

  6. When my mom first started dating after my parent’s divorce it was weird. However, the child that I was, I would tell my dad’s newest girlfriend about the last woman and how she made me pancakes (he kinda cycled through them monthly while I was in elementary school.)

  7. LOL-this one made me smile and cringe and then giggle. Your son, though younger, sounds a lot like mine. As a couple of people commented earlier; it’s remarkable how kids can pull things out of their memories at random. Especially a kidlet like mine, being on the “high” end of the spectrum he seemingly remembers the most minute details…and of course, given the social challenges, there have been times where he’ll bring one of the details out at an inopportune moment 🙂

    Something tells me that you and JohnnyId have an awesome, rollercoaster ride of a visit ahead. Sit back, buckle in and enjoy the ride! 😉

What do you think?