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(74 Posts)
hippoesque Tue 17-Dec-13 11:31:53

When I met my partner I was young and had no definite idea's about marriage, children etc.

I fell pregnant with unplanned DC whilst at uni and dropped out and we had a second planned DC a few years later.

So in the last 8 years we have had 2 children, bought 2 houses, survived extreme extended family bereavements and built a fairly nice little life together.

The problem is marriage. I have been ready for the last three years, he, I assume, is not. I've tried talking to him to find out if he wants to do it traditionally (proposal) or if we can just go ahead and do it seeing as we've done everything else. I'm getting nowhere!! I couldn't even tell you if it's a priority for him. He always fobs me off with vague allusions that he'll get round to it.
I can't help but think that if he doesn't want to do it now then he'll probably never want to.
Both of our children have his name and he has all the benefits of 'married life' so why rock the boat I guess?
Would I be selfish to wait until the NY and just start again on my own? He is fully aware that I'm at breaking point with this so it's not like I'm springing it on him. I just can't live with him for the rest of my life when he doesn't care that I'm so upset to be continually put off.
I didn't realise that it would be a deal breaker for me but equally he gave me no reason to believe that he was against marriage/marrying me/whatever the fuck his problem is.
Arghhhhh! Any opinions would be appreciated.

Abbykins1 Tue 17-Dec-13 11:37:40

He should marry you!!!

Are you saying though,that if he doesn't, you are going to leave him in the new year?

hippoesque Tue 17-Dec-13 11:43:34

I would say that I'm going to move into the spare room and take steps to leave. SAHM and all my savings went into the mortgage years ago. So I haven't got the financial backing to just swan off. In no way is he financially abusive it's just the decision we made when our second child came along.
I love him enough that if he had an epiphany and suddenly decided that he would like to marry me then that would be the best possible outcome. Equally I'm independent enough to start again on my own if he doesn't want to IYSWIM?

Jan45 Tue 17-Dec-13 11:44:33

Because you have given him two beautiful children who are illegitimate, sorry to sound Victorian but in my book, if he aint gonna marry you after that, you're on a hiding to nowhere!

RatherBeRiding Tue 17-Dec-13 11:46:07

So its marriage or nothing? Maybe he doesn't think its such a big deal and I can't help but agree with that sentiment. What counts, surely, is the relationship - are you happy, are you compatible. If you are, then what difference will marriage make - I don't think it gives you any greater security, or any greater guarantee that the relationship will last.

But if it is really, really, really so important to you that you would rather leave and start up on your own unless you get it then at least be completely honest with him and say that you can't stay with him unless you are married. The danger with that, of course, is that if he's not particular keen on getting married he will feel blackmailed into it, and that kind of thing has a nasty habit of coming back and biting you on the arse!

hippoesque Tue 17-Dec-13 11:51:38

I've never issued an ultimatum for precisely that reason. I just feel so torn! Our life is good, a tad boring if I was looking to nit pick but essentially nothing wrong. But anytime another one of our friends get engaged or we go to any sort of event I have to deal with being asked if we're planning on getting engaged/married. I always make jokes and excuses but it's horrendous because it physically hurts to think it'll never happen for us.

maleview70 Tue 17-Dec-13 11:52:26

Would it not feel equally as crap that he is only marrying you because you threatened to leave him? Not very romantic that is it?

I also think splitting up what otherwise is a good family unit just because of this is wrong. Those two children will have a better life with their dad as part of it than with some new
Bloke pretending to be their dad and being shipped from house to house.

My son who is now an adult described this experience as never really having a home because he was never in one long enough to feel like it was his (we split 4/3). Me and his mum get on and did the split as best as we could but it has clearly still impacted on him. He also talks about never getting married himself as what's the point when most marriages end anyway......

I would think carefully about this one....

HotDAMNlifeisgood Tue 17-Dec-13 11:52:41

What does marriage mean to you? Why is this such an important, emotional issue?

(not criticising, just asking you to express what is really behind your need to be married)

LyingWitchInTheWardrobe Tue 17-Dec-13 11:55:00

OP, please don't be passive. You both decided to have your second child; your first was a surprise but surely not that unexpected?

I can understand you want marriage, I can understand that he doesn't. If he did, you'd be married by now. I think you'd be perfectly within your rights to start again if you wanted to but it takes time to set up new relationships and there's no guarantee that a new partner would want to marry either.

It's an awkward situation because you're basically putting your partner under duress to marry you and even if he does, how is that going to be satisfactory? It wouldn't be for me, I'd always know that it wasn't a mutual decision and that would rankle.

I'd say that your best option would be to sit down with your partner and really tell him how very unhappy you are about your relationship status and ask him to consider that. Make no ultimatums unless you have no problem either way with the outcome.

hippoesque Tue 17-Dec-13 11:57:29

I think you misunderstood. Of course we both chose to have a second child but again that was a few years ago so not being passive at all.

skolastica Tue 17-Dec-13 12:06:21

Has he got some unexplored issues? The father of my children went to pieces at big family events - they were hugely traumatic for him due to past stuff. Also, my own relationship with my parents was so wobbly that I preferred not to marry than to have them anywhere near me on a day that was important to me. Maybe worth considering.

LyingWitchInTheWardrobe Tue 17-Dec-13 12:07:43

Sorry hippoesque, that 'passive' comment was really because of Jan45's post which followed your OP, apologies!

Why does he not want to marry or is it that he really does not want to marry YOU?. Are you really to him the "she will do for now" woman.

I think you need to talk more and properly establish why he has given you such vague allusions to marriage and what his opinion on marriage actually is; has he himself seen his parents split up or indeed many of his friends marriages break up?. He needs to be reminded that cohabitation separations can be just as painful and prolonged even though you are not married.

I sincerely hope he is not stringing you along on some vague promise of marriage in the dim and distant future.

Does he regard marriage as a "piece of paper"; some men (and women) do think of marriage as such. He may or may well not realise that your legal position as it currently stands is very poor indeed let alone the fact that if he was to die suddenly you could well end up destitute or purely relying on the kindness of his family to help you as a widow to two children. As it stands you could not choose a headstone for him, open Letters of Administration and even receive a widows allowance from the government purely because you are unmarried. You could be really up the creek both emotionally and financially without a paddle. In law you are currently regarded as two separate individuals and are treated as such.

Onesleeptillwembley Tue 17-Dec-13 12:11:48

If you feel you could leave him just because he doesn't want to marry you then your heart really can't be in it anyway. I don't understand why you want to if you feel like that. Probably as well if you do separate.

LadyInDisguise Tue 17-Dec-13 12:13:42

Why is marriage important for you? Do you know what are his views on marriage, ie something important, just a piece of paper?

IME, getting married when you have dcs is essential to protect yourself and your dcs (financially etc...) in case of divorce, bereavement etc... Esp as a SAHM.

So the question is, why do you think he is being evasive and not answering questions? Does he want to protect himself financially (eg house in his name only)? Does he want the possibility to just leave wo turning a glance back? Is he just against marriage or feeling so pressured to do it that he is just not doing it iyswim.

LadyInDisguise Tue 17-Dec-13 12:15:54

From your OP, the biggest issue for him is that he hasn't told you WHY he isn't getting married or even if he has an issue with marriage.

And THAT isn't good in a relationship, whatever the subject is.

peggyundercrackers Tue 17-Dec-13 12:16:45

i agree with maleview on this one - i think you need to be careful. Im not sure what you are looking for from being married that you dont have now other than not having to answer questions as to why your not engaged/married.

If someone gave me an ultimatum/put a gun to my head i would tell them to go fuck themselves - thats bullying because you are forcing me to do something i may not want to do. i can imagine if a man came on here and said my GF wont marry me im going to leave if she doesnt he would get very short shrift and would be told he is acting like an entitled arsehole.

Jessdurberville Tue 17-Dec-13 12:18:42

Dear OP, I haven't read the replies carefully so if I am duplicating advice then apologies. Like you DH and I had an unplanned baby young followed by two more (1 planned plus another accident). We married while I was pregnant with first, I basically bullied him into it as I was under so much pressure from my parents - if I had been more mature I would have resisted. I think you have summed it up when you say you are bored, organising a wedding will give you a project and stave off boredom for another while but it will return. My advice would be to go back to college, marriage will not suddenly make you happy but educating yourself and planning a career for when the kids are older definitely will give you self-esteem and further independence. If you are already half-thinking of leaving the relationship because you feel unfulfilled I can guarantee that a party and a piece of paper will not change that long-term. No harm in drawing up proper paperwork though as Attila pointed out.

hippoesque Tue 17-Dec-13 12:22:08

Some interesting perspectives here. Our mortgage and others assets are all in joint names but he has an inheritance tied up in it and I had to sign a legal document stating that I wouldn't go after it if we split. Not a problem to be honest, he is very methodical and I did expect it. No bad marriages around us. His parents happily married, his sibling happily married, majority of our friends happily married (see a theme here?!)
Probably have to face up to the fact it wasn't a problem for us before and it's only my problem now. It just sucks to not be in the same place emotionally I suppose.

Jan45 Tue 17-Dec-13 12:30:13

I wouldn't be happy having two kids outside of marriage and would want and need that affirmation a marriage gives you.

Don't settle for less if it's what you want - you went through two labours of love for him, can't he at least make you feel cherished? If he is so methodical about you not getting your hands on his money, he maybe should've thought more about producing children.

Do you really want to be saying when your kids are teenagers that you are still waiting on him asking you?

Don't settle cos it suits him.

stargirl1701 Tue 17-Dec-13 12:37:38

Is he confusing marriage with a wedding? Can you make it clear you just want to pop to the registry office for 20 minutes one day? No stress, no fuss, no meal, no party, etc. You just want legal protection for yourself and the children.

"Some interesting perspectives here. Our mortgage and others assets are all in joint names but he has an inheritance tied up in it and I had to sign a legal document stating that I wouldn't go after it if we split".

What sort of legal doc did you sign?. Please tell me you sought independent legal advice of your own before signing such a document.

Regardless you need to firmly establish why he does not want to marry at this time. He cannot and should not keep stalling you on this point.

mummytime Tue 17-Dec-13 13:14:28

Sorry but I don't think he is that committed.

He went to the effort of protecting his inheritance from you.

BUT he has gone to no effort to financially protect the financial security of you and the children. If he fell under a bus tomorrow, who would get his half of the house etc. His parents?

Marriage is the quick easy way to protect this (and why several of my friends got married). The other is to go and pay a solicitor.

His choice, other wise I would walk away. Better to be the one choosing the timing and being prepared than just dumped.

LisaMed Tue 17-Dec-13 13:18:55

If he went under a bus tomorrow you would have no right to arrange his funeral and vice versa.

Do you have wills in place?

JoinYourPlayfellows Tue 17-Dec-13 13:27:33

So he won't marry you, but he's prepared to leave you completely financially fucked if you split up?

What a charmer. hmm

I see that despite you investing every penny of your savings and your ability to earn money in the relationship, he has made sure to protect his inheritance.

He doesn't want to marry you, because if you were married YOU would have rights to his money that you currently don't have.

What on earth made you give up work and make yourself financially dependent on someone who has no legal obligation to you whatsoever?

And who wants to keep that lack of obligation in place permanently?

If he's prepared to leave you in such a precarious situation, he doesn't love you enough and you need to leave because you can't trust him to put your best interests anywhere in his list of priorities.

AndTheBandPlayedOn Tue 17-Dec-13 13:32:01

Are you being selfish? Only in the good sort of way. fsmile
Previous posters have mentioned his resentment if he got married by being pressured into it...what about hippoesque's resentment at being fobbed off with vagueness, year after year? Feeling physical pain when having to joke about it to others is a sure sign something has to give here.

Hippoesque, you have been patient long enough. It is a "shit or get off the pot" situation, imho. Continuing along to not rock the boat would make you more and more invisible in your own life. Not good at all.

Also what Jan45 and Attila said.

LadyInDisguise Tue 17-Dec-13 14:05:26

Yes I agree that I am uncomfortable with the idea that he is looking after himself and his assets very well and expect you to go along with it but doesn't want to make a similar effort for you.

I can understand he wants to protect his inheritance but have you done the same to protect the savings you have put in too? Why would I not be surprised if you haven't?
That means that if he was to die, you wouldn't have a house to leave in. If you want to get divorce, you still don't have a house to live in. And on the top. you would give him half of your savings....

Once again, saying that you don't want to get married and explaining why is one thing. But not saying anything and just fobbing you off is another. Especially when tis is an issue that IS very sensitive to you, proven by your very physical reaction to it. He HAS to be happy to talk about it and say why. That's the least he can do.

CailinDana Tue 17-Dec-13 14:24:25

I am really surprised that some posters are telling you marriage won't make a difference. To SAHM it makes a massive difference, in fact I think any SAHM who isn't married is nuts. As others have said if he walked off tomorrow or died in the eyes of the law there would be no connection between you beyond the children. He could force the sale of the house and walk off with a large portion of your savings while having his own inheritance protected. If god forbid he was critically ill his parents could override your decisions and claim his property as theirs. Basically apart from the ability to claim maintenance for the childrrn you have no more rights than a housemate. You have given up your career but have no security - it's a very precarious position to be in.
The worst thing IMO is that he won't give you a straight answer. If he outright said no you would at least know where you stand but at the moment he's just stringing you along. It's cruel.

Jan45 Tue 17-Dec-13 14:32:49

So he continues to climb the career ladder whilst you have to languish at home looking after the children, unable to forge the same sort of career for yourself and what does he give you in return, no financial security whatsoever.

You don't have to be married for him to legally make the home yours should anything happen to him, I can't believe folk are saying marriage won't make a difference, it will make a HUGE difference, and not just for your emotional stability.

TalkativeJim Tue 17-Dec-13 14:32:56

Agree with Cailin.

Any SAHM who is voluntarily screwing up her pension accruement, employment history and earning potential without the protection of marriage is NUTS.

Yes, issue that ultimatum... and in the meantime inform him that you will be looking for work as soon as possible, and that he had better start budgeting for 50% of childcare costs as well as making up the shortfall in his 'half' of domestic tasks that you currently cover.

I mean, after all - what the hell does he think you are - some kind of 'wife'? grin

hippoesque Tue 17-Dec-13 15:10:31

We have mirror wills and life insurance policies that name each other so that aside is not an issue. As I had children young I haven't got a career but going back to education is the plan when my youngest starts school. He hasn't really got any family left so that is also contributing to why I feel guilty I think.

CailinDana Tue 17-Dec-13 15:15:41

What do you feel guilty about?

Jan45 Tue 17-Dec-13 15:15:46

Guilty for what? Wanting to spend the rest of your life with the man you've had two babies with, seriously?

Jan45 Tue 17-Dec-13 15:16:58

Yeah and does the Will include his inheritance passes to you on his death, no, because that is why he got the minute of agreement separating his inheritance from you, if I'm reading this right.

hippoesque Tue 17-Dec-13 15:18:12

I feel guilty that we are his family and he's happy with the way things are I can't seem to be able to get to a place where it is enough for me too.

Mirror wills etc do not even begin to address the nightmare that faces you if he dies suddenly. You are still in a very poor legal position regardless if he was to die suddenly. You could still not open Letters of Administration, choose his headstone and receive a widows allowance (currently around £80 a week) from the government simply because you are not married.

Does he actually want you to go back to work (has that been discussed?) or will he try and guilt you into not doing so?. Your own pension and career prospects are being affected markedly.

If anyone should feel guilty here it is him for stringing you along for so long with vague promises. He will still be making them in any number of years time. But I have to look at you as well; you have allowed all this to happen to you.

hippoesque Tue 17-Dec-13 15:22:14

If he were to die then I would receive his inheritance amount as I would be the sole owner of our property. If we were to split, married or not, then it gets taken out of the pot then we would divide the rest.

Jan45 Tue 17-Dec-13 15:22:26

You shouldn't have to and probably can't change your view and morals, this is why you prefer to be married, esp having two children, if he can't understand that then he's really no good for you - if you were good enough to have two babies with then does that not mean you both want to spend the rest of your lives together, I assume the answer from both of you is yes, getting married shouldn't change that, it should strengthen it, do you really want to be calling yourself his girlfriend or partner when your kids are teenagers?

It's him who is the commitment phobic, not you, tell him it's a deal breaker for you, if he truly loves you, he shouldn't see getting married as a terrible thing, quite the opposite, it's common sense.

I guess as well that you signed all the legal documents re his inheritance without seeking your own independent legal advice beforehand. If you have indeed done that then you were naïve to do so.

"If we were to split, married or not, then it gets taken out of the pot then we would divide the rest".

No, you are still treated as separate individuals if you are unmarried. What is his is his and what is yours is yours. It becomes very complicated if he dies because apart from dealing with your own grief, you are also dealing with the financials. You also signed a document to the effect that you were not to go after any of his inheritance in the event of separation.

hippoesque Tue 17-Dec-13 15:30:45

I signed it because if I didn't it would have seemed that I was after his money, I'd never want to come across as grabby. I did seek my own legal advice on the matter and the consensus was that if I was happy to leave the relationship with what I came in with then signing wasn't really an issue.

Jan45 Tue 17-Dec-13 15:31:29

OP, you have an answer for every financial pitfall mentioned, seriously did you not wonder yourself when he said he wanted a Minute of Agreement set up to protect his assets, when you already had two children together - there was your first indication of his real intentions.

At least you sought your own legal advice which is a good thing.

He is still in a far better position though than yourself as a SAHM.

You still need to establish his proper reasons for not wanting to marry or does he really not want to marry YOU. Are you to him the "she will do for now" woman?. It is still unfair of him regardless to have strung you along without giving you any real reason for his prevarication.

A difficult but honest conversation with him is necessary.

hippoesque Tue 17-Dec-13 15:34:15

I'm not concerned about the money side that's why. I want to marry for love not because of what I can gain financially.

Jan45 Tue 17-Dec-13 15:44:42

Two kids to look after and you are not concerned about the financial side, you should be, for their sakes.

I am sorry but I don't think he is interested in getting married, from what you have written above.

Marriage is a deal breaker for you, you have come to realise that this man for whatever reasons does not want to marry or even worse the possible realisation that he does not want to marry you. What are you really to him, that is what I'd be asking this man now.

LadyInDisguise Tue 17-Dec-13 15:49:34

hippo YOU want to get married for the love. But from what you say, he hadn't said why he doesn't want to get married. Until he tells you, you will have to
Either think he is like you and will marry for love. And then where is that leaving you?
Or you think his reasons for marrying or not are different and then what? What are these reasons that means he can't do that thing for you when it means so much to you. I mean you are feeling guilty, you think you are selfish for wanting a marriage. Why when he hasn't bothered to explain why he doesn't see that as a good thing (and in my book it would have to be very good reasons seeing he knows how important it is for you).
Which leaves me wondering. Is he do scared to tell you or is it that the reasons aren't ones he can tell you?

DontmindifIdo Tue 17-Dec-13 16:09:32

I would sit him down and ask if he would like to get married, it's a yes or no quesiton, no vage answers, if he starts waffling, tell him you want a yes or no answer. If it's yes, then great, you will book a registary office for the new year and you can start getting things sorted, unless he wants to do a big wedding, and if so, can you afford it and it still would need to happen within 2014. If it's no, he should give you an explaination. If his explaination is basically "we're fine as we are" - point out that no you're not, you aren't happy being unmarried and he knows that, so you'd like to hear the real reason. If it's 'just a bit of paper' then there's no reason not to do it, if it's 'too expensive' - it can be less than £200, less than one month's worth of widow's pension.

The fact he wanted to protect his inheritance when you bought a property after having 2DCs together is very worrying, where does he htink you and his children would live if you split up? Would he think it was reasonable to throw you all out so he could protect his inheritance?

hippoesque Tue 17-Dec-13 16:21:00

I really never saw it as 'protecting his assets' Fuck knows what I did think he was doing it for though. I've never even thought to question it but with these reactions maybe I've been wilfully blind.
I'm happy to sit through the next couple of weeks, children and Christmas will provide a great distraction. Come Jan 1st we will be having that conversation, no ultimatums or deadlines just an honest and frank discussion about what his problem is and if we have a future if we can't reach a happy compromise. Wish me luck!

oscarwilde Tue 17-Dec-13 16:21:09

You could propose at NY ?

hippoesque Tue 17-Dec-13 16:21:52

Ahhhh tried that at Leap Year. Is there an emoji for lead balloon?

oscarwilde Tue 17-Dec-13 16:27:10

I do know someone who proposed and it went down badly as he had wanted to do it (but never got his arse in gear to do it). He stalled and then waited 6 months before asking. She was on the verge of leaving by then. If you've already asked then I wouldn't ask again but I'd give it to the beginning of Jan to be on the safe side smile

I'm sorry OP but I suspect you are going to need to start planning a new life if it is that important to you. At a minimum you should be stepping up training in preparation for the job market.

BobPatSamandIgglePiggle Tue 17-Dec-13 16:30:17

I know exactly how you feel - I want to marry because I love DP, DS has his name and I want us to be a proper family unit. He's not arsed and avoids talking baout it if he possible can.

No avice but just wanted to say you're not being unreasonable.

ThePinkOcelot Tue 17-Dec-13 16:34:29

OP, I was in your exact position. My OH wasn't interested in getting married. He didn't see the point. We have 2 dds. I wasn't happy. So I booked it and told him the date we were getting married. Turned out it wasn't being married that he didn't want, it was the wedding. So we had quite a small do and it was a lovelyday. We have been married for nearly 6 years now. Good luck.

oscarwilde Tue 17-Dec-13 16:41:15

Do you think he actually knows how bad your position is if anything happens to him?
What does ^actually happen if his family have passed away and the OP is not the legal "next of kin"? Does he become a ward of Social Services or something?

Jan45 Tue 17-Dec-13 17:15:37

It's actually disgusting to think a man can have two children with a woman and then have the audacity to protect his assets, not giving a feck if she (and the children) have any financial protection at all.

On top of that, he's been fobbing the OP off for a long time re the marriage situation, saying he'll get around to it and is fully aware she is at breaking point.

Seriously, OP, kick this waste of space in to touch, he either does the decent thing or you are moving on in the New Year. Stop thinking about him and start thinking about you and what you need and want and deserve.

LegoStillSavesMyLife Tue 17-Dec-13 18:02:38

I wouldn't wait until new year to be honest. Sit him down tonight and explain why marriage is important to you and then ask him what the fuck his problem is for his thoughts.

But seriously a SAHM without the protection of marriage is not wise.

idontbelievethisnsmeistaken Tue 17-Dec-13 18:09:10

first of all let's get real. she has been with the guy for a long time and has two children by him, telling her he is a waste of space and that he has no real intention of spending the rest of his life with her is preposterous. all you need to do is find out how he really feels about you and how he sees his future. plenty of people do not marry in this day and age but it does not mean they don't love each other or want to spend the rest of their lives together.

approach with care and do not treat him like a waste of space just because some stranger fees justified somehow in calling one having read a few paragraphs about the two of you on a forum.

I think if you could find out why he did not want to get married.. are you religious ? if he is opposed completely to marriage and you really want to get married then obviously you need to decide what is more important here. it is just a piece of paper and you should be aware that that is what you would be breaking up your family for. clearly he has demonstrated commitment to you up until now...

JoinYourPlayfellows Tue 17-Dec-13 19:14:06

"I feel guilty that we are his family and he's happy with the way things are I can't seem to be able to get to a place where it is enough for me too"

Of COURSE he's happy with the way things are - you're the one who's totally fucked over by the status quo.

He's fucking golden - nice "wife" at home looking after the kids and he could walk away with a new woman tomorrow and you'd have NOTHING from him except what the CSA could force him to pay.

If that's enough for you, then you're a fool.

idontbelievethisnsmeistaken Tue 17-Dec-13 19:28:35

ah now not only is the OP's partner a waste of space but she herself has spent the last 8 years of her life with a man who is "fucking her over" and she would be a "fool" not to listen to this lot. I despair.

hippoesque Tue 17-Dec-13 19:40:43

Thanks for all the advice. Obviously he is taking the mick with regards to having everything his way but he is a lovely man outside of all the boring legal/financial side. Next Of Kin and POA stuff has given me something to think about so will be sifting through all our documents tonight to get a better understanding of where I stand in the future.

JoinYourPlayfellows Tue 17-Dec-13 19:43:13

"he is a lovely man outside of all the boring legal/financial side."

It wasn't so boring when he was making sure you'd never get your greedy mitts on HIS inheritance.

Was it?

It's only boring when YOU might have something to gain from it.

melanie58 Tue 17-Dec-13 20:28:00

I hate it when people say marriage is 'just a piece of paper'. They miss the point that it's a hugely symbolic piece of paper. That's the bit that matters to some of us including the OP. No one ever suggests that my decree absolute is just a piece of paper and quite right too.

JoinYourPlayfellows Tue 17-Dec-13 20:41:20

It's not just a symbolic piece of paper.

It's a piece of paper on which is printed an extremely important legal document.

idontbelievethisnsmeistaken Tue 17-Dec-13 20:43:37

the decree absolute is of course just a piece of paper as well and the ease with which one can obtained does leave one wondering what is exactly was of such significance in the first place. best not get into this tho smile

Twinklestein Tue 17-Dec-13 20:49:16

I feel guilty that we are his family and he's happy with the way things are I can't seem to be able to get to a place where it is enough for me too

Does he feel guilty that he can't seem to get to a place where marriage is for him? I bet he doesn't even think about it...

LadyInDisguise Wed 18-Dec-13 07:55:07

hippo all the next of kin stuff is really about protecting yourself in case of death. I agree that it is very important to look at, esp in your situation with no marriage as what would be the most normal thing in the world when you are married will not happen as cohabiting couple.

However, I am getting the feeling that this is not the reason why you want to get married.
Some posters have reacted strongly to the fact he has done his homework re protecting himself financially but hasn't supported you in doing the same. This is only one side of the story.
But even more important is what this 'piece of paper' means to you and the fact he hasn't acknowledged that. Or tried to explain his pov.

You really need to talk to him. Not in 2 weeks, not in one month. This has been a big issue for you and you keep delaying getting to the bottom of it. He has so far managed to brush you away very effectively. Don't let that happen again.
If you do, the only thing that will happen is that you will grown more and more apart and you will end up resenting him big way. A perfect combination for a failing relationship.

MrsTrellisNorthWales Wed 18-Dec-13 08:35:49

One person wants to be married (for whatever valid reason). One person doesn't (for whatever valid reason). Both love each other. Who is the one who should compromise? Whose want is more important than the other's?

If marriage is an absolute dealbreaker, why on earth would stay with someone this long and have a second child with them? I can understand the first was an unplanned surprise but the second one was a decision you both made. Did you really not know then that marriage was a dealbreaker for you? Did you really not discuss it before planning the second child? And if you did, and he refused to be drawn on why he didn't want to marry you - or marry anyone - that should have stopped you having the second child.

Offred Wed 18-Dec-13 09:05:46

She has already said both children were unplanned.

Divorce is not easy to get, but I'm not sure why it shouldn't be? Marriage is a contract and I don't believe people should feel contractually obliged to stay together, it should be easy to end it otherwise we end up with children living in unstable and unhappy homes which are known to be toxic to their development and (usually) women putting up with abuse because they feel contractually obliged to.

I don't believe it is wise to approach marriage from a love perspective. It is an important legal matter designed to protect vulnerable dependent partners and children financially.

You have children together so there are things you may be able to assert if you split up and had care of them but the main difference you should be concerned about is the costs of asserting your/your dc entitlements.

The law provides for automatic entitlement for a dependent spouse. If you want to assert your rights as a dependent cohabitee and he tries to let you have nothing then you will need to bring a number of expensive and stressful court cases in order to try and assert your rights and in this case there is no guarantee that you'll be successful. Unless there are large sums involved it is not likely you would have the resources to fight him legally for many of the things you have agreed if he, as the property owner, will not hand them over.

It is good that you've taken some steps to protect yourself legally but I, like others, think you are extremely unwise to be a SAHM without the protection of marriage.

I would be very concerned by this inheritance document in conjunction with him not wanting to marry. I would infer from that that he was not willing to marry because he wanted to protect his property and therefore I would be worried about what happened when you split.

He is happy to take your sacrifice of your education and career so he can benefit financially but he seems keen to reap those rewards for himself and actively prevent you and the dc having a share in what you have contributed to.

Offred Wed 18-Dec-13 09:08:56

How would he react if you said that you can't be a SAHM without marriage because it leaves you and the dc vulnerable and you wanted him to go part-time and you go back to work also part-time so the childcare was split between you? Or even that you work and he become a SAHD?

JoinYourPlayfellows Wed 18-Dec-13 09:44:25

"He is happy to take your sacrifice of your education and career so he can benefit financially but he seems keen to reap those rewards for himself and actively prevent you and the dc having a share in what you have contributed to."

This ^

This is exactly the position you are in.

Of course he's happy with it (although, a genuinely decent and generous man would not be) and of course you are not (only a fool would be).

DirtyLittleSecrets Wed 18-Dec-13 16:32:14

I agree that you need to tell him that you won't be a SAHM without marriage because of the position it leaves you in. I also think you need to find out what his reasons are for not wanting to marry. If it's simply that he doesn't believe in it - I can relate. If it's that he's protecting what he sees as his, that's not ok in my opinion, not when you have children together.

Thisisaghostlyeuphemism Wed 18-Dec-13 16:47:27

One reason We put off marriage was an aversion to admin/paperwork.

Your dp clearly doesn't have that issue tho.

Orlea Wed 18-Dec-13 17:07:32

OP, stepping back from the issue of finances vs love vs commitment etc... do you want to be married, or do you want a wedding? Often people want both, but if you had to generalise, it would probably be that men don't mind or even want to be married, vs women who want not just to be married, but to have a wedding day with all the bits and pieces. A lot of men, in RL every single one of my friends' DHs and mine too, hated the idea of a Big Wedding Day, but they let us go ahead and have a nice wedding day (whatever our own vastly different interpretations of that were) and got through it - dare I say some even enjoyed their own weddings! Anyway, they are now all married and tbh it's not made a huge difference to most of us in terms ticking along with daily life, but it does give legal/financial security.

So do you want that big day or just the end result? Maybe your DP dreads the big day like my DH, in which case see what ThePinkOcelot said - have you tried telling him that it could be a few people in a registry office for 30min in two weeks' time? Would you be happy with that? Or would you hold out for the Big Wedding Day, in which case it's less about marriage and more about a big party... which might be why he's stalling. Have you had that conversation? Tbh if he's refusing to talk about it, I'd be at the point of sending him a nice but clear email (or note, whatever) stating your point of view and your proposed solutions, and ask him to give you his, either face to face or in kind.

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