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Partner won't provide for our family

(84 Posts)
goldilocksuk Thu 14-Nov-13 08:59:23

Hi everyone,
I am a regular reader of this forum but have finally plucked up the courage to post. Sorry it's a long one:

My partner and I have two children together (twins) who are under 1yr, and basically my issue is his refusal to provide for our family. He works for himself, as he always has done, and makes next to no money doing so these days, at one point he was earning good money (when I met him) but not for a long time now. From the day I was first unexpectedly pregnant, I have begged for him to pack in his self employed work and get a job that brings in a steady income for us, to which he ended up agreeing this needed to be done, and even sat with me whilst I wrote up his CV and applied to jobs for him (I had to do it as he said he had no idea what he was doing). Long story short, calls and emails came in from agencies etc. but he never told me about them and instead said he’d not heard back from anyone, until one day I saw him open his emails and there was one from someone offering him an interview, which by then he had missed the deadline to attend.

All I can say is he’s too proud, lazy and has been spoilt, he went to a top UK university and his parents paid his way, and his father worked 6/7 days a week to provide him with a good life. He was never forced to get a job like I was, he doesn’t know what it’s like to have to get up early in the morning to go out and earn. Even now caring for our children rests on me whilst he has a lie in until 12pm each day, he ‘works’ late with his business so that’s his excuse for lying in, and I prefer him out of the way so give up trying to get him up in the mornings with us. He is also very proud and hates to admit that his self employed business that he has bragged about doing to jealous friends whilst they slogged away in their jobs is now not a viable option any more. He has never had to work a proper day in his life. He had it good at one point, when it was only him to provide for, he'd make enough money to have a good lifestyle and he could wake up whenever he wanted and choose what days he worked (if any) each week. His work is now dwindling, he makes next to no money any more and as he’s worked for himself and it’s not a real career he doesn’t really have any real experience to get a job with, so going into a job now he doesn’t have much to show what he’s done for the last X amount of years, and he’s almost 30.

I feel ridiculous writing something like this and asking for help. I never pictured myself being with someone who would not do anything and everything to provide the best life for their children. My dad was such a hard worker and provided for 4 children and a wife. Now I know I’ll probably get responses telling me to get rid of him, etc. and it does cross my mind a lot in moments of anger and frustration. But there are children involved who love him, and he is a fantastic father and I do love him, even though at the moment our relationship is severely strained – there is no intimacy between us, (we dtd maybe twice since I gave birth Dec '12), and it is rare we do anything together, even though we are under the same roof 24/7.

To add to that strain we moved back in with my parents in May 2013 as I knew we couldn’t afford to keep renting and he promised me it would only be for a few months whilst he earned money for us to move out again. Now it’s nearly December and we are still here and with no signs of moving out, I have managed to save but he has saved nothing. I buy everything our children need with the child benefit I get whilst he pays for shopping with the little money he earns each week from his work, and sometimes delves into our joint account so our savings are diminishing (I do have separate savings though). I have been job hunting for him as I have told him he has to work now, and I found one job the other day that basically paid nothing and was part time, and he said that sounded like the ideal job for him as it was part time and when I said he'd be earning practically nothing he didn't seem bothered, which to be honest angered me so much. Why does he have no drive to provide for his family? We will never be able to get a mortgage if he doesn’t work- a while back he said to mutual friends how once I went back to work I could get a mortgage in my name for us! I feel like I’m expected to work but not him! As for marriage, there is no way we can have the wedding I dreamed of unless I pay for it when I’m earning again, which I refuse to do.

I’m so fed up I don’t know what to do any more, every time I approach the subject he just sits there as though he’s deaf and doesn’t respond, or says he will do something about it and doesn’t!!! I know once I return to work, I will not be able to be with him if he doesn’t also provide. I also know I will have to apply to jobs for him or it won't happen, which is tiring when you've got twins to look after too.

Any ideas how I can get it through to him that I’ve had enough?

Thank you for reading if you got this far! smile xxx

LuciusMalfoyisSmokingHot Thu 14-Nov-13 09:09:28

Hes a cocklodger whos riding on the back of your hard work, i suggest you boot him from your parents house and tell him not to come until hes ready to support a family he help make.

Or just cut him lose.

mistlethrush Thu 14-Nov-13 09:10:02

In what way is he a good father? You have admitted that you do most of the care for your children, and he doesn't bring anything in to help look after them - and he's not bringing anything to the partnership either by the sound of it. Throw him out - tell him that when he's got a job that pays for a rented flat / house that can accommodate you and the children and can put something towards saving etc, you will consider whether there is enough to come back to...

PurplePidjin Thu 14-Nov-13 09:10:46

He's not a fantastic father. He's too lazy to take provide for his babies and has no respect for his partner.

What are you getting from this relationship? You do all the childcare, all the cooking and all the cleaning. How are you better off than finding a nice nursery or childminder, going back to work and teaching your children the values you have that their "father" doesn't?

Fishandjam Thu 14-Nov-13 09:13:30

I'd chuck him if it was me. Two kids is enough to look after without an almost-30 year old kid too.

But - could you earn enough to support all of you if he became a SAHD? Or is that not a goer?

Cabrinha Thu 14-Nov-13 09:14:15

Sounds awful.
I think all you can do is tell him you've had enough and MEAN it.
What are your plans for child care when you finish mat leave - presumably next month? If his work is so flexible, he might be the ideal SAHP - although he needs to step up on that, by the sounds of it. It will put a stop to lying in bed til 12 though!
If you're reading this thinking he won't / can't do it - then I'd seriously think about ending it.
But your child care plans might change how you approach this.
Otherwise - would your parents support you in saying that they'd like you to move out? (even if they want you to stay) That might help with the urgency of job hunting.

CailinDana Thu 14-Nov-13 09:15:49

How is he a great dad if he does nothing for his vhildren?

flippinada Thu 14-Nov-13 09:17:29

Sorry, but I don't think you can. He's never had to be responsible in his life, and to be honest it reads like you've just taken over from his parents.

custardo Thu 14-Nov-13 09:17:34

its not about him - its a bout you. firstly you must think about what you want in life for yourself and your children - this will come with a financial tag

for instance - i would like to live in my own place = rent money, household bill money

practicalities - like childcare - if i live in x area Y could help with childcare/there is childcare facility which costs z

at this point armed with all the information, you can sit down with him and say

I am planning tget my own place - it will cost x. How will you contribute

treat this as a professional meeting, you are two organisations who need to work out a financialy viability for your joint future.

if he can't contribute, and love isn't enough - then leave emotion out of it.

Thumbwitch Thu 14-Nov-13 09:19:10

Another one who has no idea what constitutes a good father! Failure to provide for his children makes him a shit father tbh, sorry.

Thumbwitch Thu 14-Nov-13 09:20:03

Sorry, when I say another "one" I mean another OP, not me.

Roussette Thu 14-Nov-13 09:21:21

Oh dear Golidlocks... this sounds awful. The bottom line is, your OH is bone idle and lazy and he needs a reality check. Of course, you don't want to leave him if he is a great Dad (although you haven't exactly said how he is... as he seems to lie in bed till midday and who can do that with two little DC's...)
Anyway, I think you are going to have to be more firm because nothing is working is it.. I think you need to tell him there is a time limit on living with your parents, I would get him to agree to removing access from the joint account (make him come to you if he needs extra money), I would sit him down and say that if he hasn't got a job within a specific time limit (say 6 months), you can't see that the marriage is going to last. Can you get his parents onside or have they so enabled this by spoiling him, that support from them is impossible? Do they think of their son as a lazy layabout or a golden boy?

You have to think Goldi... in years to come... think of the example he is setting his DCs... total lack of work ethic. I would be absolutely fucking furious if I knew that my OH had actually had interviews lined up and he had just ignored the emails and not turned up... he is actually lying to you on that as he said he had heard nothing... what else is he lying on? You could be on the edge of huge debt here... sorry, this post probably doesn't help, I just think you have some stark choices in front of you. I wish you lots and lots of luck.

TrueBoo Thu 14-Nov-13 09:24:14

He's a terrible, terrible father. A few moments of being a Disney dad does not make a fantastic father.

He needs to step up to the mark - but I suspect he won't do that. In which case, he needs to sling his hook.

flippinada Thu 14-Nov-13 09:27:08

Goldilocks you mentioned that you live with your parents.

What do they think of him? I can't imagine that they're happy to subsidise and pick up after a grown man who spends his days lazing about. Tbh I'm shock at a parent of one year old twins who lies in bed until midday!

Flipping heck, OP, you have really skewed ideas about what makes a good father! Unless you have left details out? I just can't see how lazing in bed till midday each day when he hasn't done any work makes him a father in ANY way?

He is either lazy or depressed. Only you really know the answer to that one. But it sounds like he leans towards the former. He needs a massive reality check. You need to demand more of him. He won't like it if no-one has expected to do anything altruistic in his life ever before. But give him the chance to change his ways. And if he doesn't he need to go. Do you really want your children growing up thinking that this is how fathers should be? Terrible example of parenthood.

what do your parents think? And his? Mine would be horrified at such fecklessness and would have had harsh words a long time ago. If he is not sure what he needs to be looking for then he needs to speak to someone who can give him some careers advice. Until then he should be cleaning toilets if he had no other choice!

Andy1964 Thu 14-Nov-13 09:57:27

He sounds like a spoilt brat to me.
And no father or partner worth their salt would lay in till noon if they were not working.
I know you don't want to hear it but I think the others are right.
He's not a good father, if he shared some responsability for child care and housekeeping then I'd probably answer differently but you post suggests that you do it all.

The only way this is going to work, and I think you want it to because you said that you love him is this;
His business needs to become successful once more. Maybe in recent times he has become demoralised with the business because it's not doing very well. Maybe he has low self esteem because the business is so bad you have had to move in with your parents.

What does he do?
Can you help him build the business back up?
Can you help him build back his self esteem?

I will probably get flamed for that because it's all down to you again but the only reason I have said it is because you have said you love him, I don't think you want to loose what you have.
If he's not going to do it for himself then nothing will change.

Alternativly you tell him pretty much the truth as others have suggested in this thread.
He is lazy
Spoilt
Crap father
Crap partner
Useless provider for his family
And tell him he has 6 months to sort himself out or he can hit the high road.

BusterKeaton Thu 14-Nov-13 10:01:01

Op could get a job and give him responsibility for child-care while she is at work.

expatinscotland Thu 14-Nov-13 10:07:00

Well, if he won't do it, then you need to and chuck him.

higgle Thu 14-Nov-13 10:08:04

Does he resent the fact that the pregnancy and the life changing event of having two small children was unplanned? Perhaps he just can't cope with all this and is opting out as a result. One option, if he is good with the children would be for you to go back to work and him to care for them. I do appreciate your predicament but the obligation to be "the provider" is a bit of an old fashioned way of looking at things, you need to build a partnership and both contribute if you are going to have a satisfactory relationship. It sadly sounds to me as if the responsibilities of a family are not ones he wants to meet and you may be better off without him.

LuciusMalfoyisSmokingHot Thu 14-Nov-13 10:08:14

Buster, if he doesnt get out of bed til midday and OP does all the child care, hes probably not the best SAHD candidate, until he could prove he could look after the children effectively.

curiousparent Thu 14-Nov-13 10:15:29

Him being a SAHP is a bad idea. If he doesn't have the work ethic he will do it badly and eventually OP will resent the fact that he is still not contributing equally. She will likely come home from work and have to do a whole load of things that other SAHP's do whilst the working partner is out at work.

Ypu eill have to go back to wprk, abd attempt to progress yourself.When you do go back to work, will his being bone idle available save you on childcare? If you won't leave him, then you need to accept you cannot change him. The only thing you can do is change yourself. So if he won't work, then you will have to work the extra, as your Dad did to 'keep' your children and partner at home. He's not going to get a real job. If he won't look after the DC while you work to improve their lot then I don't see much that can be done tbh as you say leaving isn't an option.sad

Lweji Thu 14-Nov-13 10:21:40

It's not clear to me if you are on maternity leave or unemployed.
If on maternity leave, why did you stay for a year?

I don't see a problem with you working and him as a SAHD. He'll have to step up and start waking up earlier, and do a fair amount of house work, as far as the twins allow it.
If so, see how it goes.

Ultimately, if you still find him a lazy bastard, be prepared to kick him out. You don't want to, but facing separation may be the only motivation for him to step up.

goldilocksuk Thu 14-Nov-13 10:27:08

Thanks for your posts, I did expect to get a lot of kick him to the curb posts, and I understand why.

When I say dad of the year, I mean that our twins love him, he spends quality time with them and does help make dinners etc. Yes he does get up at 12 but that's because he's changed his work schedule so he works evenings (6 days a week) and does work til 4am at night trying to make money. He isn't on benefits or not working at all if my original post suggested that.
However he just has low self esteem about getting a job, and plus I don't think he wants to give up on his dream of working for himself- as at one point it was going really well for him.

Yes he could be a SAHD but to be honest what happens once the boys are grown up and I'm the only one working? To be fair he's been a SAHD up until now and I don't see why I would have to go back to work and not him.

Your comments have given me enough ammo to tell him exactly what I think and give him one final chance, so thank you all.

goldilocksuk Thu 14-Nov-13 10:28:57

dad of the year- i mean that he's a good dad* lol

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