Most Helpful Girl
Children need stability , love and security to thrive and be happy. Sometimes this can't be the case when two people stay together.
Children adapt quickly and easier than adults do. You can't allow a child to make a decision of whether you get back together or not with your ex. Children should never be put in a position of such responsibility, if the relationship falls apart the child will blame themselves. Plus, you shouldn't be showing photos of other woman and asking your child if you they want you to be with that person... it is quite cruel. It will confuse the child.
If your ex is unreliable and doesn't show the children any love then being together will not make her act any differently towards the children. She will probably start feeling resentful towards them... her actions toward them will show it too. This will cause your children more pain, constant pain at that
It is better for them to hurt short - term.. missing their mum with her not in their life, than to put them through the long - term pain she will cause them, if you are both together.
Of course children want their parents together , but you can't allow a 4 year to make a decision... a life changing one. If you don't ask your child what he wants and not talk about other women or ask if he misses his mum. He won't even think about you getting back together. It is you who is keeping the issue in his mind.
Children as young as your live in the moment, they don't concerns themselves with yesterday or tomorrow. They accept the " here and now" and theit thoughts can be easily distracted onto more pleasant things. Your children should be enjoying doing what kids do... they shouldn't be brought into adult decision making. Do what is best in the long - term for your kids. If their mother doesn't want to be in their life or won't put them first , then you should do all you can with all of your abilty to ensure you succeed in being a single father.
Most Helpful Guy
I think it's time to let your ex go, and go on with your life and the kids. Raising kids as a single parent (even if it's a few years) is not easy but many people have done that. It's just the cards life gave you. You just buckle up for the ride and take life by the horns and go on.
Your kids need their dad right now to show them all the love you can. When the 4yr old asks about mom, just tel him mom isn't coming home today and that you and him will have a great time together in whatever you do.
One female responder had it right when she said that kids live in the here and now and move on faster than us adults do. Put on your best "Daddy" face and enjoy them as they grow up!
If you get involved with any other women, make sure you have the kid's future in mind with her being a potential mom for them. I'd not let the kids see other women you date until you feel that relationship has some strong traction. You don't want to confuse kids with a bunch of different dates you go out with.
It's definitely time to move on without your ex.