|Missing -- our dad|
It may comfort you to know that you are not alone. But it does rather lead one to ask what has changed so much given that you did, at some time, "lie with" that other parent. You have offspring to prove it.
No matter, you don't have to put up with it. So, here's a plan by which you can create a parent-sized hole.
Step 1: make allegations that the other parent has been violent, and seek a restraining order or aggravated or domestic violence order that legally locks the other parent out of the house and keeps them at a distance them from you and the children.
You don't have any evidence of such an incident? It doesn't matter: make it up. No-one is going to check or challenge you -- or at least, not for a long time... which leads to the next step.
Step 2: in court (multiple years later), highlight the time the estranged parent has been absent from the lives of the children and that therefore, this parent is no longer relevant.
Voila - one parent-sized hole.
There are however, a few caveats.
First, this is a messy operation. It will very likely rip the heart out of the other parent in a manner akin to surgery conducted with a wood saw, without anesthesia and very likely leave the patient breathing, but only just and simultaneously wishing it were otherwise. (It might have been more merciful to simply dig a hole and bury the offending parent).
Second, it is a scorched earth policy destroying that which is precious to human life, the very life that we create. That is, it will almost definitely burn the children - although the legal system will argue that this in the best interests of the children.
And this then leads to the final rather more legal caveat. Existing laws really only allow this strategy to mums, not to dads.
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(The illustration is by Gaye Dell and appears in the book, The Other Glass Ceiling.
For more detail on how this strategy is executed, see this person's expanded account.)