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by Abigail Van Buren

Single Mom Works to Keep Relationship With Ex Good for Son's Sake

DEAR ABBY: My ex-fiance decided to leave our relationship and our 10-month-old son, "Nicky," about a month ago. He sees Nicky regularly and is a good father. I know our relationship is over and that it's not going to be fixed. To be honest, when he left, I was relieved.

The other day, I suggested to my ex that maybe once a month we take our son out together to do something, like go to the park or the zoo. My reasoning is that Nicky needs to know that even though his mom and dad are no longer together, we can still get along. His response was he didn't think it was a good idea. He doesn't want our son to get the wrong impression. I just said "OK" and left it alone.

Is he right? Would it confuse our son, or is he being selfish? It seems unrealistic to me that we will never do anything together. My son is my No. 1 priority, and I just want to handle it the best that I can for him. Please help me. -- CONFUSED IN SANTA MARIA, CALIF.

DEAR CONFUSED: Your ex may have said what he did because he doesn't understand that you have accepted that the romance is really over. Don't accuse him of being selfish. Be patient. In the future, Nicky will understand that, although Mom and Dad are not together, they get along, if you truly do get along. As Nicky grows older, there will be events such as birthdays, sporting events, graduations, etc., you will probably wind up enjoying together -- or eventually with significant others or spouses included.

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