Help... advice needed(26 Posts)
I'm 23 and my partner is 35 with a 10 year old son. We live together and he gets his his son every weekend (aside from weekends when he is working). I get along fine with his son but its his sons mum who is the problem. She constantly changes plans and expects us to just go along with it. I drive and my partner doesn't so i always take him to pick up and drop his son off. On a few occasions we have dropped him home for 7pm rather than the usual 6pm to help out the ex due to her working but often when we do this she'll turn up 30-45 mins late and often this is when it is pouring with rain. If i didn't drive her son would be left standing outside the house getting soaked. We've also dropped him at her mothers ( at her request) for no one to be home and the mother to be at the exs home, meaning i need to stop by my own familys home to get petrol money which is inconvenient and is a bit embarrasing.
My parents have paid for me and my partner to go on holiday with them and we leave on wednesday. It is a 2 week trip and to make it up to my ss we have taken him on numerous expensive days out, booked a week all inclusive holiday next year with a water park for him, my partner is taking him to blackpool for a few days in july and we have a 6 hour drive home from the airport on the friday morning and are getting my ss on the friday night when we come back. We have done everything we can to make it up to him that we'll be away for 2 weeks. My partner has depression and i have stress and our jobs aren't going too well so we really need this break.
Tomorrow my partner fought for the day off work to take me to a hospital appointment for an invasive procedure to see if i need surgery for a medical issue i've had for a few years that has gotten out of control. I have never had anything like this and am terrified at the thought of surgery. I'll be sedated so someone must be with me and stay with me overnight. When my partner picked up his son on friday, his ex found out he wasn't working tomorrow and decided ss would be staying with us an extra night. This meant he would have to come to my appointment. This will take 3 hours and a hospital is no place for a 10 year old to be plus its private to me. My partner tried to explain to his ex that he is only off work for this appointment and can't keep his son the extra night. As usual, she had already decided we were and made the usual excuses about her working and her mum not being able to look after him (despite her having a new parter who would already be looking after her other child). I just feel like i can't win here. This appointment has been in place for months and now i've had to struggle to find someone else to take me and its really upset me because i need my partner and want him with me. She said i was a big girl and can go on my own. If i could go on my own then i would but due to sedation i'm not allowed and i shouldn't have to.
She is the one thing that puts me off a future with my partner and i've come to the end of my tether and don't know how much more of her crap i can take.
I don't want to miss out on a future with my partner but i can't put up with this forever.
Lots of posters on here seem to have similar problems with the EW. I think your partner is in between a rock and a hard place, if he says no to having his DS extra time, it reflects badly on him, but if he says yes, as in this case, he's letting you down! Can't win really!
But in this situation, he really should have said emphatically NO! He wouldn't have needed the day off if he wasn't going to be with you, but I can imagine how difficult it was!
I think you need to have a serious discussion with him soon, concerning your doubts about the future, some ground rules need to be put in place about how flexible your both prepared to be....and his DS is old enough to have things like this explained to him!
his ex found out he wasn't working tomorrow
Someone needs to stop telling her all about his days off.
I've no idea how she found out but think maybe my partner probably let it slip. I have a feeling he makes me out to be the bad guy " she wants me to go with her" rather than "i need to go with her".
Think it has reached the point where we need to have a serious talk about it all.
As someone whose partner has a similar ex...it will only get worse.
Although I do think your current issue is a partner issue rather than his ex. He should have said tough to his ex. He can't have son, and she had no right making plans without discussion.
Good luck at the hospital
Thanks, was just starting to feel like its maybe me and my age that was the problem and i was over reacting.
I am the same age as your partner and I think he is out of order from your post.
Unfortunately I think for some men they hand over their balls during separation/divorce when there are kids involved. My dp is 40 and will go out of his way to keep his ex happy regardless of how much is upsets me. She wanted to cancel contact this week, he agreed without a thought for me and then didn't tell me until the day meaning I missed my uncles funeral because he was working so I was supposed to be having the kids.
Your issues will only get worse if he doesn't learn to stand up to her.
I don't want to rock the boat right now cause we go on holiday on wednesday so i think i'll wait until we are back and explain to him that she is an ex and its his son and me he needs to keep happy. I'm not prepared to have a future with him if thia carries on. I'm only 23 and am happy to take on his son but i'm definitely not prepared to come 2nd to his ex and her feelings. Thanks for the advice
How would your DP maintain contact with his DS if you weren't there? How did he do it before you were together?
I think you have fallen into the trap that many do; in the first flush of a new relationship you have been happy to put yourself out, but now it is expected of you rather than appreciated.
You shouldn't be doing drop off and pick ups. Your DP should be arranging those. His relying on you is unfair.
I have been with my boyfriend for two years, and overall I have a good relationship with his children, daughter 8, son 11. The ex wife is fine and my boyfriend and I get on great. I'm moving in, boyfriend has kids half the week and every other Saturday night, all works fine. So I had a few concerns about privacy, there was no lock on the bathroom door, finally he put a lock on. The children have had a very relaxed free run of the house, including our bedroom, the get in to our bed with I pads during the day, get in to bed with him and on one occasion in the morning the son got in to bed with me, I wasn't wearing much and felt terribly uncomfortable. Generally I am not there in the mornings, I leave early and as I'm not living there atm, I don't go back to the house until late afternoon evening after work or after riding my horses etc. so last night I had a chat with him about bedroom privacy and said that I feel the children need to know that it's our bedroom and if they want to go on iPads to do so in their own rooms and we need to just make sure they know not to just walk in in the mornings, and get in to bed etc as I would hate for them to see anything that they shouldn't. I also said that I feel our bedroom door needs to be shut at night, again out of respect for the children etc! My boyfriends barriers, once again went up! I tied to explain that it's just a respect and privacy concern and that I'm not their mum and I don't want anyone to be put in an embarrassing situation. I know his ex wife and her partner have the same idea in their house (four children involved) and it works fine! He wasn't happy about the situation, I went to bed and when he came up he did shut the bedroom door but nothing else was said! Please can someone tell me if I am being unreasonable here?! I'm so stressed about it!!!!!
JLC, whatever you do take some time before you move in. Have a conversation with your dp when you are both calm and see if a compromise can be made. Then make any changes slowly and before you move in. If he isn't happy to compromise you need to rethink.
If changes start being made quickly surrounding you moving in you could very quickly go from being dads fun girlfriend to wicked step mum who everything has to change for.
Plus, start wearing proper pyjamas, you are in their home right now and need to respect his children.
The idea of moving in has been on the cards for 3 months. Am I unreasonable asking for that level of privacy? Ie, they knock before walking in, door kept shut when I'm getting changed?
This is why I have mentioned it before moving in so he can address the freedom of the bedroom, exactly for that reason that I don't want them to resent me! I totally respect its their home, family home at that but i also need to feel comfortable and know that if I'm getting undressed the children are not going to walk in! I even had to ask to have door shut when having 'fun' at night which I found very bizarre that it is not done anyway??!
JLC - take it all slowly. Dss used to do this a bit so things had to change, but slowly.
So, I always wear PJs in bed in case he comes in or I have to get up or something. Dss was 9 when we met (well, he was 8 when dp and I met but 9 when I met him) and used to get into bed with dp in the mornings, and me if I was there. They do grow out of it.
But, when we moved in together I used that as the catalyst to say he had to knock on our door if he wanted to come in - and we reversed the respect too, and we knock on his door (he's 15 now but we started this when he was about 12). At 15 the last thing he would ever want to see is me in my chuddies, at under 12 it wasn't an issue for him at all - but we did have to instill some sort of rules as otherwise we knew things wouldn't work when he was older. Plus the last thing I want is for him to tell his dm that he saw my nippular area or anything!
Does your partner want to address bedroom privacy?
He said he doesn't want them to have no go areas, so I did correct in saying that it's not that bedroom is a no go area it's just that I feel uncomfortable with them in our bed whenever they want and I don't want to be the one that keeps asking them to go in their room as they will resent me for this! I will need an area of my space, that's normal isn't it? And the bedroom to me seems to be the easiest place?! I totally get taking it slowly but he has massive barriers when it comes to his children and takes it v personally which I have said to him! We get on so well and to me this should be something that is not an issue, just normal?! It's also respect for their mum as I don't know how I would feel if my son/daughter were to get in bed with their partner?!
It's normal for you, not for him and his children. You don't seem to be able to see that they have a different and perfectly valid view to you. If you can't even see why it might be a problem then you have no hope of a happy compromise.
I admit I find it hard that he doesn't seem to respect my privacy? What should I do just not go in bedroom to get changed etc and let children use our bedroom as their third bedroom? and what if I come back early in the morning and want to go back to bed and his kids are in bed with him? I honestly don't know how it should be but I'm thinking it needs to be my home to sand I need to feel comfortable?!
He did say that it will just happen naturally but I just didn't want to have an unecessary situation arose like I have mentioned above!
I admit I find it hard that he doesn't seem to respect my privacy?
And it's great that you have discovered this significant difference in values before you move in together rather than afterwards.
You're not wrong. He's not wrong. You have different opinions. If neither of you are prepared to compromise, then the progression of the relationship seems impossible. But, when it comes to changing DCs routines and boundaries, I would tread carefully, and consider whether it is reasonable to expect them to compromise for the sake of your relationship with their dad.
Ok! How do I handle it from here? I'm really stuck! The children do already have a rule at their mums that her and her partners room is a no go area full stop, I'm not asking for that, so the children are aware that this is normal with regard to their parents partners! I wish he wouldn't take it so personally, I have experienced splits, divorced before so I do understand but as I say I do feel that I need respect with regard to privacy as well! It took me three months to get a lock on the bathroom door! So I'm not the sort of person to get annoyed and unreasonable for no reason as I say I just don't want any unecessary conflict, upset or hassle!
But it is personal. He has a set up that he, and his DCs, are happy with. You're not.
He has to decide whether he is willing to change for you, and you have to decide whether you are willing to compromise for him.
I would urge you to think carefully and not suppress your real feelings in order to try and make things work - so many of the problems described on this board could have been avoided if the stepparent has been honest with themselves from the start and said "this isn't the life I want to lead".
Dp doesn't always understand my privacy issues - he still thinks it's fine for the three of us to go camping in one tent, I say it is not.
But, if I feel uncomfortable it trumps his 'not understanding'- how can he enforce something that makes me uncomfortable?
If he really can't see it as an issue I would be worried about his respect for you generally.
As you say, it's not a no-go area, it's just a "someone might be getting changed, or need some quiet time, or be sleeping" so you respect that and knock.
But you have to widen the rule - all bathroom doors are knocked on, all bedroom doors. Talk to him about respecting their privacy too.
And calm down on the exclamation marks on every sentence, it's really annoying.
Join the discussion
Please login first.