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Would appreciate some thoughts and opinions please(61 Posts)
Hi there, would love to get a few thoughts and viewpoints about my situation as I feel I'm at a bit of a stalemate and don't know how to progress.
So briefly, we are a couple in our mid to late 50s been together 8 years not married, lived together 6 years. I'm divorced he is widowed 16 years. We both have grown up children and grandchildren, all get on well together. So far so good.
I've become increasingly upset and hurt(irrationally maybe) that we don't really talk about our joint future, finances etc and sad that he doesn't want to marry me or for me to change my name. We have a lovely life together but I want more! He is a typical man in that he can't articulate emotional stuff.
I'm beginning to feel that "I'm not worth it" iykwim, although he regularly tells me he loves me dearly.
Am I being silly to be bothered by the not married bit?
... And I am still trying hard to concentrate on all the positives
It was really useful hearing so many different viewpoints. I spent the long weekend trying to discuss exactly how I was feeling again and repeating the idea about changing my name. In his own way he has just about let me know now that he doesn't mind if I change it. However the lack of real interest in me doing the deedpoll thing is worrying as I can't get to the bottom of how he really feels. One most intuitive thoughtful adult son is concerned I'm making too much of a compromise and he isn't.
Still not sure what to do next, but if I think about us not being together at all I feel sick and definitely don't want that to happen.
A bit of a rambling long post sorry, just thinking out loud really.
Justforfun, what a lovely post, thank you so much.
I have a different view. My DF was widowed mid 40's and moved in with his GF around 50. They seemed very happy together (she was divorced, no children) but he was not ready to get married. He had 3 children and a decent amount of assets reativel to his GF. He has been in a very happy marriage previously. The second relationship was very happy and he was devoted to GF (she was/is fantastic). He was totally committed to her and spent a lot of his energy doing things for her (practically to help her/her family). I suspect he covered all the day to day finances and her earnings were her own (not huge).
I know it took him a very long time to get over loosing his first love/the mother of his children and in some ways he probably romanticised that relationship. I believe he didn't want to get married mainly for financial reasons as there had been problems with Wills in his family. He made it known to his DC all along that his GF would be provided for in his will (an equal share to each DC). We always said it was completely his own business what he decided to do with his assets. I know his GF would have liked to get married for a long time.
They did eventually get married when he was around 60. I think it was partially due to him feeling the relationship had matured, partially that he became ready but mainly because he felt his DC were more financially/emotionally secure and because he knew it was so important to his now DW.
I believe that he has always loved and been very good to his DW (as she has been to him) but relationships later in life are generally more 'practical' than young/innocent love (I'm very concious on that myself being single with 2 children in my late 30's). I'm sure if his DW had posted on here at any time in the intervening 10 years she would have been advised to leave but I believe her giving him the time has resulted in a very rewarding/happy and secure relationship for her.
I wish you the very best of luck.
Corygal, thank you. I will just try harder to concentrate on the positives I have in my relationship. I've read enough threads on here to know that I am having a much better time in my relationship than many others.
That all sounds good, to be honest. For now, I would prioritise looking after yourself, though - do the wills thing without him.
Oh I just mean all the deeper meaning stuff like the wills, ame changing etc.
Don't think it's the free house keeping, he pays his way very fairly, although having said that I am completely open about my income/savings etc but he is quite private about his. Not that he is hiding thousands though I do know we have roughly the same situation.
Re first wife. I'm surrounded daily by her in her children and their lives. She is talked about a lot and they were together from when he was 20 so yes he could still be in love with her. But 16 years on he does tell me frequeńtly that he loves me and loves being with me.
Scratch deeper - explain pls.
Do you think he's with you for the free housekeeping and the nice house? Or that he's still in love with dead wife?
Are you worried he doesn't love you?
Yes I've already mentioned wills next of kin power of attorney etc to him several times, just have to keep saying it again I suppose till he gets the message which will probably be never.
I can predict the response to the sentence about only for my children etc.... It will be "ok"
I know I'm not really be very positive about this relationship at the moment, on the whole as I've said earlier we have a lovely life together. I just feel it's all on the surface and scratch deeper there are problems , but only for me, he's happy.
And yes, I think you should deal with your children about it - these are important decisions, and you can't risk someone not acting in your best interests because they don't fancy a bit of paperwork.
Be firm and make sure he knows he is being cut out. Explain you'd rather have it different, but you're aware of his choice not to marry, and you need to look after yourself under the circs.
I'd bring it up by saying you want to do the will things and the power of attorney and health stuff for your old age at some point in the near future.
Then I'd say that you're planning to deal with your children only about it - as he is only a boyfriend and doesn't want to make himself more than that.
It feels like eggshells not gently! He is fully aware of how I feel but has the family reputation of being silently stubborn and quite self sufficient. Goodness knows how his wife persuaded him to get married back in the 70's.
Cream, sorry I see you said that earlier. Basically for me it wasn't about emotional security (I felt we had plenty of that without being married) but about how the outside world viewed us legally - pensions and next of kin etc. Also because I have a 10 year old to whom we wanted to demonstrate stability. YOu seem to have the financials thought through. You sound to me as if you feel undermined by his reluctance to marry, which I understand, it can be an enormous bugbear. Your DP sounds a bit too comfy with the status quo. Please make sure he understands how you feel - if the commitment truly is there anyway, it's a question of being a gentleman about it rather than anything else. But go gently with it. Good luck.
Getting easier, thanks for replying. We are fairly equal financially now, there was no money in his first marriage. He's just not interested in anything to do with wills, next of kin etc, burying his heading the sand is what he does best! Oh dear this is so tricky, basically I want us to be together on a more stable footing than we are now and he isn't at all bothered. His own children know what he's like re head in the sand. There is a lot of emotional baggage there though due to bereavement in their teens when their mum died.
Ask him who he wants to be his next of kin, making the decisions about his health should he become incapacitated. Ask him how he sees finances arranged upon his death, and/or upon your death. That may help identify why he is reluctant, or help him see that practicality of it. Are you approximately financially equal? That is sometimes a stumbling block, especially if he feels his wealth was created by his wife and him equally and therefore should pass to their children. Sorry if these topics are difficult to broach, they are very unromantic. At least if they are on the table, they can be addressed by wills etc.
I married a 57 year old age 53, it changes the commitment level not one jot but there is a legal change of status which I think is important as we get older and which we wanted clarified.
I really appreciated all your comments and having been mulling things over for the last 2 weeks. Unfortunately when I raised the subject of changing my name on my now expired passport there was a distinct lack of enthusiasm which has made my heart sink. Feeling sick at thought that I may have rocked the boat too much, but on the other hand cross that it's not something which can be openly discussed
Yes the big talk is long over due although I'm anxious about about doing it which is ridiculous I know.
I do appreciate all the comments you have all made, thank you.
It's a difficult situation. What would happen if you continue to live happily together and your partner (or you) gets dementia or is ill and need care? If your P has a property that he doesn't live in, presumably that would be an asset that would be taken into account in assessing what he is entitled to? Likewise, if you needed care, if you are living together as man and wife then I think any means testing would take into account his income as family income even if you weren't married.
Also, I think you are not each other's next of kin, in terms of decision making re: health. So, your respective children could be making decisions in the event you would not be able to - is this what you want?
I know it can be difficult to make a will in the most straightforward of circumstances - I'm doing one at the moment. But you two def. need to talk.
Do I feel that I need more emotional security than financial? I think that's what I'm after really. I'm not after his property at all, I want his children to have his house, but if he doesn't sort out a will there are stepchildren from his late wife to add to the confusion.
Ex has no money( an ex bankrupt, no job, no private pension, rented property) late wife had no money.
I don't want any of his property, maybe a widows share of pension and just to be acknowledged really as a wife, next of kin etc.
Presumably your children will inherit from your ex husband as well as from you, whereas his children will only inherit from your partner (unless his late wife left her share of things directly to the children when she died) so is he not expecting that his property will go to his children when he dies? With regards to the finances, do you think you should inherit some of his property or do you just want to be named as his wife so you are entitled to a widow's pension?
Ladylapsang, re our finances I meant we are ok at the moment, but if he dies before me I would struggle as weary half each on expenses and as we are not married I would not be entitled to any support. If I died first he also has another property which brings in an income so is not dependent on my contribution.
Blue, he does say,when I ask, that he wants us to be together long term which I'm assuming means till we are old and grey.
If you were not going to merge your finances, it is much more sensible not to get married, than to get married and have to make a number of financial arrangements (pre-nup, new wills (which under the law are voided upon marriage), pensions?) to disentangle what marriage under the law entwines.
I am not sure your partner would have the appetite for all of that just to put that ring around your finger, if he were not for it to begin with.
How far into the future does he see the both of you? Does he refer to you both growing old together and any plans in that direction (quite apart from marriage)?
Just another quick thought - under the terms of my pension from work, were my DH to remarry or cohabit after my death he would lose the widows pension (and I think the same would apply to me with his pension) although if the subsequent marriage ended he would get the pension back (yes, it really is interesting what you learn if you read all the pension stuff!). Do you think your partner is in receipt of a widower's pension?
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