Oh my goodness! Which ex do I pick? The hell with it. I shall address both of them. They both were not there for their children.
From the perspective of the mother: you were perfectly content to let another man raise your children.
From the perspective of the child: they were not “good enough” for you. If you really wanted to be a part of their lives, you would have fought harder. You would have done whatever it took to ensure you were a part of their lives.
When you finally did grace them with your presence, you act surprised and hurt because they were far from what you expected them to be. They were smart-ass, belligerent, defiant, angry teenagers. When they needed you and wanted you to be in their lives, you were not. They were hurt. The damage is done. That bell can never be un-rung.
I remember wanting to bash you verbally around/to them. However, I realized the only ones to be hurt by such actions are the kids. They did not need me to tell them your faults. They saw with their own eyes . . . The same eyes they saw me with all my faults.
At the end of the day, I am the lucky one. I was there for them for all the major milestones of their lives. Can you say the same?
I am thankful for all the trials an tribulations each of you put me through. Because of them, I am that much stronger.