Bedrooms at mums

(110 Posts)
Stepmooster Thu 27-Dec-12 11:55:18

DH and his EX are not on speaking terms all communication via sols. Contact issue just about resolved but now DH feels he has one battle to fight on behalf of his son and that is the bedroom situation. DSS11 lives with his mum and half siblings, and has to share a bedroom with his sister (my DH ex DSD) who is 15. Their brother who is 18 (my DH ex DSS) has his own room. 18 year old has quit college not making much effort to find a job and is still at home coming home at whatever AM after drinking with his mates.

DH does not want his DS to share a room with either of them. DH would like the 18 year old to move in with his dad (not my DH) or elsewhere, or for my DSS to live with us as he thinks sharing a room with a 15 year old girl is unhealthy and not much better with a layabout brother.

EX treats her eldest like he walks on water, so this is not going to go down well. DSS has says all the time he likes his bedroom, and came to stay for a week when he was ill so he could rest quietly. We live 50 miles away from DSS main home so we are talking moving schools etc if he does come here.

Is DH being unreasonable?

purpleroses Thu 27-Dec-12 12:04:44

I don't think your DH has any buisiness telling his ex to evict her18 year old to make more space for his DS. That's her shout. Sharing with 15yo girl isn't ideal but probably better than either of them sharing with layabout 18yo.

But the living arrangements at his mum's are a factor in saying whether it might be better for your DSS to live with you.

CatchingMockingbirds Thu 27-Dec-12 12:05:54

How does the 11yr old feel about sharing a room?

orangeandlemons Thu 27-Dec-12 12:07:04

I thought it was against the law for opposite sex over the age of 13 to share a room. Probably entirely wrong though........

CatchingMockingbirds Thu 27-Dec-12 12:15:06

Where did you read that it was illegal? hmm

OodKingWenceslas Thu 27-Dec-12 12:31:14

That's a council house rule although many ignore it now

Arisbottle Thu 27-Dec-12 12:48:59

I think your husband should stop looking for one more argument to have and start building bridges with the mother of his children

Arisbottle Thu 27-Dec-12 12:49:00

I think your husband should stop looking for one more argument to have and start building bridges with the mother of his children

theredhen Thu 27-Dec-12 13:06:11

Whilst I can understand your concerns, it's actually not your or dp business.

Like another poster says, you can ask dss if he would like to live with you and then you can have a say in who he shares a room with.

purpleroses Thu 27-Dec-12 13:16:49

There's nothing illegal at all about any age/sex of kids sharing. If they're council tenants they could go on the list to be rehoused but v unlikely they'd get a 4 bedroom place for a long while.

Stepmooster Thu 27-Dec-12 13:28:53

Yes DSS has been moaning for ages about not having his own room. Think this is why DH feels he has to do something. If DSS was happy then DH wouldnt be worried. Hes no picking arguments. How best to approach the do you want to live with us question?

Arisbottle Thu 27-Dec-12 13:35:52

As a stepmother if my stepson was living in cramped conditions I would offer financial help, so they could move somewhere bigger .

CatchingMockingbirds Thu 27-Dec-12 13:38:45

He might want his own room stepmooster, but how does he feel about moving out of his mums house, moving 50 miles away from his friends and changing schools to achieve this?

Stepmooster Thu 27-Dec-12 13:41:19

Arisbottle my DH already pays more than csa rates and i have no money to give them, ex has re-married and her and her husband have brand new cars and foreign holidays away from the kids. If i were the stepfather I'd sell my house that he has sat empty and move to a bigger home. But thats just me.

Stepmooster Thu 27-Dec-12 13:44:57

I have no idea what DSS thinks until DH asks him. I just wanted to know if DH is being unreasonable to ask the ex to see if her eldest could move in with his dad who lives nearby to give the younger two their own rooms. Or failing that see if it might better if he lived here with us. He is going to a new school in sept anyway.

Arisbottle Thu 27-Dec-12 13:51:20

It is not unreasonable to ask, if done in the right way.

Why doesn't your stepson spend half the week with you anyway?

Stepmooster Thu 27-Dec-12 13:58:33

He doesnt spend half the week with us because we live too far from his school - 50 miles away.

DH lives in my home we cant move because DH pays mortgage of FMH and I cant afford to buy a house in their area on my salary.

LineRunner Thu 27-Dec-12 14:05:56

Your DH needs to build some bridges, so as to be able to communicate, like Arisbottle says. Otherwise you'll end up causing unnecessary conflict for an 11 year old child.

The adults have to actually be the adults here. That means drawing a line and stepping over it, and moving on. And helping each other be parents. I would honestly love it if my ExH were to genuinely offer this. Too much time and energy has been wasted in guilty grudges and bitterness and judging.

Arisbottle Thu 27-Dec-12 14:06:58

It seems a very difficult situation all round , my DH would not live so far away from his son. Do you have children together? Is there no way he can live closer to his son?

Stepmooster Thu 27-Dec-12 14:23:20

My DH was living with his parents (not local to his son either but closer than here) when i met him, so naturally seeing as I had a house he moved in with me. My DH left the marriage due to his ex having had affairs, and long before i came along. His ex has only just via sols agreed to eoweekend, 5 weeks holiday time and eo birthday and xmas. We have talked about moving closer, and hoped that once ex re-married a year ago that she'd release my DH from the mortgage so we could move.

We have a baby together dss loves his sister, he also loves my sisters baby boy, and calls my dad grandad. They live near me and we see them a lot. We have never asked him to call my dad grandad or expected him to call my sister aunt.

DH happy to draw a line not so sure his ex is, seeing as DH had to fight for what i think is fair contact.

Arisbottle Thu 27-Dec-12 14:56:16

His wife's affairs etc are nothing to do with anything. I am not judging your husband for leaving his wife, as I said I am a stepmother myself.

Ideally your husband would live closer so he could have his son 50% of the time

VBisme Thu 27-Dec-12 15:03:58

I don't think that you can make any comment on the bedroom situation in the ex home.

Stepmooster Thu 27-Dec-12 15:32:40

Arisbottle but you are judging you say that because my DH lives with me that i should either pay for his ex and her family to live in a bigger house and then get a sly dig in that your DH would never live away from his kids. I mention the affairs because it reads to me that you seem to think that my DH walked out on his family to live miles away. My DH and I would move closer but until the ex and her husband take over the mortgage we cant. Perhaps they have no money and cant then he is suggesting DSS live here so the other kids have their own rooms. Or maybe my DH should force his ex to sell now she remarried so we can move near to DSS school and both his siblings go and live with their dad and their mum live with her husband in his house.

LineRunner Thu 27-Dec-12 15:37:19

OP, I'm just think that the normal divorce arrangement is for the parent with care of the DCs (in this case, as in most cases, the former wife) to stay living in the marital home until the DCs are grown up or until she re-marries. The departing husband has a charge on the house, unless the wife buys him out.

So the house should be getting sold anyway, unless your husband took a settlement in lieu?

Arisbottle Thu 27-Dec-12 15:49:44

I am not judging, my husband left the mother of his child in similar circumstances.

You asked what I would do and I said, it need to be you directly paying your husband could pay, if you are living together and have a child you are a financial unit so it is all semantics .

The fact is that he has left to live miles away, he may not have chosen to leave, he may have felt pushed out and that may have been right thing to do - as it was with my husband - but he chose to live away from his child, which is not a decision all men would take. If I has asked my husband to move in with me, 50 miles from his child he would have refused. That is not a sky dig, it is a statement of fact.

When my husband left his wife, he left her the house and paid off the mortgage when we could afford it so that his son would always have a secure home. We are lucky however that the mother of his son always has put her son first, is she would not move anyone else in that would impact her existing child negatively. She is in a new relationship and is planning to marry and it has not entered our heads to ask for the house back or for any proceeds from a sale.

Blending a number of existing families , as has happened here, can be a logistical nightmare. I do feel for you. In your situation I would try and move as soon as possible so that your husband can be near his son.

Stepmooster Thu 27-Dec-12 16:02:09

Moving means his ex selling the FMH and yes his charge is supposed to be realised upon re-marriage but not without leave of the court whatever that means. I cant afford to buy a 3 bed in his ex's area, would also mean me finding a new job. As i've said we'd move if they sold the house or released my DH from mortgage. But seeing as she wont, and to go to court is a massive expense and damaging to fragile relations DH is happy for his DS to stay with his mum if he can have his own room. He's happy to have him here too. DH is happy if DS is happy sharing but DS isnt it. DH trying to find the right solution.

Arisbottle Thu 27-Dec-12 16:14:49

You could offer for the stepson to come and live with you, as long as this is not seen as purely an attempt to get out of paying maintenance or to play power games.

LineRunner Thu 27-Dec-12 16:15:06

In respect of realising the charge, that isn't a massive expense. A solicitor could easily deal with it.

But it's the consequences that need thinking through and some serious discussion.

Desired outcome: DS has his own room. Acceptable solution: exW has bigger house. Parties to the solution: all adults.

WakeyCakey Thu 27-Dec-12 16:17:39

Your dss isn't going to move 50 miles away from his mum and it would be cruel to even suggest it to him.
There is nothing wrong with sharing a room with someone of the opposite sex, they are siblings!
i am a step mum too and would never get involved in something like this at dsd's mums house.

there are loads of kids that want to have their own bedrooms but realistically many people can't do it so i personally think you should butt out and let the child's mum decide what's right for her child.

sorry if that sounds harsh but there seem to be too many threads at the moment of step mums over stepping the mark and if you carry on i think you may come close to it

elliebellys Thu 27-Dec-12 16:17:51

Why do you think 2 children should be made to leave their family home just so 1 doesnt have to share.?.many familys have no options .its not ideal but thats life.i also think the way you talk bout the other kids is disgustin.you have no right to judge.

allnewtaketwo Thu 27-Dec-12 16:18:03

I don't understand the maintenance comment arid bottle. Maintenance is supposed to cover the expense of having residence of the child. If you take over residence then you would incur the expense yourself, do what financial gain would there be? Unless you're assuming the Pwc profits out of the maintenance of course. I.e. that the maintenance received exceeds the cost

Stepmooster Thu 27-Dec-12 16:19:43

And when i say i cant afford to buy the house, what i mean is mortgage lenders wont consider my DH because he has a mortgage already and we'd actually do better just using me as the applicant.

Arisbottle Thu 27-Dec-12 16:21:02

I agree , however I have known of case where parents have rather naively tried to get residency because they did not want to pay maintenance. They are wrong but often it is about power games.

Relationships are already strained

purpleroses Thu 27-Dec-12 16:25:10

Your DH needs to explain to his DS clearly that he can't solve the bedroom shortage at his mum's. He can sympathise or try to offer pratical help (eg buy him a high sleeper or have say that he's welcome to stay at yours more weekends or hols) but his DS needs to understand that there are some things his dad can't fix for him. He needs to talk to his mum about this one, though it's quite possible she doen't have a magic solution either.

I would start off the discussions about him living witb you in a very general possibly in the future kind of way and see how he reacts. As someone upthread says not liking sharing a room isn't the same as actually wanting to uproot yourself.

Stepmooster Thu 27-Dec-12 16:32:55

I dont think the 2 kids should move I dont think anything its my DH, and someone suggested we move closer and i am saying to do that would mean my DH realising his charge and forcing the family out of the FMH. And yes its a stupid suggestion that is why i said it to show we couldnt move closer. The question was my DH thinks he should help his son have his own room. When his adult brother stays at home when he could live with his dad or get a job and live an adult life. My DH pays maintenance and always will, more than CSA its insulting to say he wants DSS so he dont have to pay maintenance. I would leave him if he ever stopped supporting his son.

I am not sticking my nose in, im trying to be this adult you all want us to be take a step back get an outside opinion and advise DH.

Arisbottle Thu 27-Dec-12 17:04:23

I am not saying that his motivation is to avoid CSA, I said would it be interpreted as such and then create more conflict in an already difficult situation.

slambang Thu 27-Dec-12 17:11:40

From a totally objective outsider's point of view it all sounds a bit too controlling to me. Not his remit. Not his business and not in the best interests of his ds.

You say your dh has only just sorted reasonable contact and communication is limited to lawyers yet now he wants to dictate the sleeping arrangements in his x's house? Surely he would want to work to gently to build more trusting and positive communication with ds's mum by sticking fairly to the agreement that has been reached (no doubt at great expense) for the benefit of ds before dropping in the bombshell of ds moving to live with him?

How would you feel if a lawyer told you which bedroom in your house your dc was allowed to sleep in?

And there is no law on girls and boys not sharing bedrooms. Many families do this and manage perfectly well. However I'm sure ds's sister has made her mum aware that she's not happy with the arrangement just as ds has. I'm sure there mum has thought of the alternatives. And I'm sure that entering a legal battle to turn a young boy's life upside down is not in anyone's interest.

elliebellys Thu 27-Dec-12 17:27:29

Stepmooster,why should the lad have 2 move out cos he,s 18.thats his home as much as anyone,he has every right to stay for as long as he wants..how can this situation improve when your dh is prepared to tear a family apart just so his son gets a room to himself.

BOFingSanta Thu 27-Dec-12 17:30:59

You can't tell other people where they should live, you just can't.

I agree that the focus needs to be on restoring harmonious relations with the ex, and making your husband's son comfortable and happy when he stays with you.

Leave the rest of it: a solution will present itself in due course. At the moment, forcing the ex to sell up will look like a hostile move, but the adults involved will hopefully be able to discuss that option once the heat has been taken out of the divorce rows. This won't happen if your husband is trying to dictate to other people where they should be living.

Stepmooster Thu 27-Dec-12 17:32:36

Its not DH doing this to control, he wants to help his son, who lives in the house DH pays the mortgage for. He thinks its unfair that his son has to share a room with his sister, which both hate and moan about, whilst an adult has the other room.

And yes i know its not the best timing as he's just gotten a contact agreement, but DS is moaning a lot. DH sorted the contact arrangement out cos DSS wanted to see him more often in school hols. DH doesnt think DS will want to move here but has never asked him.
So i suppose DH should test the waters with DS before doing anything thats going to rock the boat.

How do you think the mother will react when your Dh suggests her child move fifty miles away from her, their sibling and their friends?

elliebellys Thu 27-Dec-12 17:39:14

This is goin to end up in all out war very soon.you just can,t see it.

slambang Thu 27-Dec-12 17:41:11

He may not be doing it to control but that is what the effect is.

He may not think it's fair on his ds but it just isn't anything to do with him. (perhaps he thinks because he pays the mortgage he has some sort of residual rights to decide who lives in the house? he doesn't.)

Frankly if his reason for thinking about moving his ds away from his mother, siblings, friends and home is just because he shares a bedroom then he isn't thinking about ds's best interests. He is thinking about winning something. sad

Stepmooster Thu 27-Dec-12 18:50:46

DH is not going to make DSS move 50 miles away, he was going to ask him/his mother about it as DSS is moaning about not having his own room. Who knows she might be struggling, there's'probably a lot of unhappy adolescents creating merry hell and this might help?

DSS brother has a room at his dads. His dad lives near to the family home. He probably doesnt live there because his dad probably would make him get a job. And seeing as he likes to be out drinking with his mates rather than studying and keeping antisocial hours DH cant see why he should support him. Yes i suppose seeing as DH pays mortgage he feels his son ought to get a room instead of him. The ex and her husband have 2 homes between them and dont show any signs of selling either to trade up into a 4 bed.

CatchingMockingbirds Thu 27-Dec-12 18:53:58

Is dss's brother your dh's step son?

NotaDisneyMum Thu 27-Dec-12 18:56:19

DH doesnt think DS will want to move here but has never asked him. So i suppose DH should test the waters with DS before doing anything thats going to rock the boat.

I really don't think that placing an 11 year old in that situation is the best way forward.

No matter how your DP words it, it will come across as a bribe - "son, I know you don't like sharing a room at your Mums, so come and live with me, and you can have your own room".
For whatever reasons, your DP and his ex have both recently agreed (via solicitors) that what is best for your DSS is for him to live with his Mum and have regular contact with his Dad. If your DP doesn't intend to stick to the agreement, then it is up to him to renegotiate it, and ask a Court to intervene if he and his ex cannot agree. At that point, and not before, your DSS will be interviewed, by professionals, in order for recommendations to be made to the court.

Just because your DP and his ex disagree on this issue doesn't mean that your DSS is better off living with his Dad than his Mum - even if he wants to.

Stepmooster Thu 27-Dec-12 18:56:24

Yes he was his DSS for 11yrs

Curios1ty Thu 27-Dec-12 18:57:01

OP you keeping coming back to whether your DH should approach his ex about her eldest son moving out. He simply cannot do that. That is completely unreasonable. He has no rights in telling someone to evict their own child. His only business is his child's well being and if his son isn't happy with sharing a room he needs to enable him to communicate that with his Mum or offer to help him to do it.

VBisme Thu 27-Dec-12 18:57:45

If your DH and his ex are only communicating via solicitors letters I find it hard to believe that he wants to discuss this to help her out.

I find it easy to believe that because he pays the mortgage he thinks he can dictate who lives where. Whilst I sympathise, I think you'll find he has no legal right to do that.

He may be able to force a sale, but that will all be included in the divorce papers, and probably wouldn't be a great idea.

My SDs complain bitterly about the size of their rooms at their mums house, well sorry, but my DH isn't going to talk to her about building an extension because it's none of his business.

Honestly, you're onto a losing battle, I'd stay out of it (both you and DH) if I were you.

Stepmooster Thu 27-Dec-12 18:59:32

DSS brother dropped out of college recently and has started being anti-social at home. If he was still studying and not being a nusciance then yes DH would stick to contact order. Its DSS who is complaining, and DH hasnt spoken abt it to DSS as he thinks that its putting him in the middle and wanted to discuss with his mother...

LineRunner Thu 27-Dec-12 19:00:38

The reason that your DH gets to realise the charge on the house upon his ExW's re-marriage is the belief that the new husband brings something into the new marriage.

I think it's natural to wonder why the new husband doesn't help sort out their living arrangements more comfortably, if you think he has the means to do so (maybe he doesn't, though?) but your DH can't really interfere, he can only realise the charge and suggest that the ExW and new husband organise their affairs as they see fit, if you genuinely believe that they do have an alternative.

Otherwise I guess you will have to accept the status quo.

AmberLeaf Thu 27-Dec-12 19:09:10

If they only speak through solicitors, how does your DH know so much about what goes on in his ex wifes home ie his step sons behavior etc?

Is that all based on what his 11 yr old is telling him?

He really has no right to say his ex wife should kick her son out!

Stepmooster Thu 27-Dec-12 19:09:52

Ok so DH needs to get DSS to talk to his mother about it and tell him he cant do anything. Should he make it clear he is welcome to live here or just forget it?

My DH has no problem in being reasonable its his ex who wanted to go through solicitors. And no he has never interfered in anything she does regarding parenting hes not breathing down her neck. This would be the first time he's considered wanting to discuss DSS welfare with her, other than when he asked for secondary school brochures and he agreed with her school choice.

Just out of interest how old does an adult child living at home rent free, at the expense of his brother and sister sharing become unreasonable?a

Stepmooster Thu 27-Dec-12 19:13:13

Yes DSS tells him about his brother, he told us over dinner a month ago that his brother dropped out of college when DH asked how his brother was getting on with his studies. And then told us he was looking for a job, but then later told us he is never home just out all night with his friends.

BOFingSanta Thu 27-Dec-12 19:14:13

It doesn't become unreasonable as long as his own mother is happy to facilitate it, I'm afraid. You simply don't get a say in it.

Arisbottle Thu 27-Dec-12 19:15:56

The fact that you talk about the home that your DH pays for and therefore he should have a say raises huge red flags for me.

We have paid for the home our stepson to live in, but now we have done so we have no say over how they live in that home.

And if it's what Amber Leaf says then be very careful as 11 year old's have a tendency to stretch the truth. Your Dh does sound rather controlling especially in wanting to tell his ex to ask her son, your dss brother, to leave.

VBisme Thu 27-Dec-12 19:20:44

Look, it isn't practical for him to move in with you right now due to your geographical location.

When you do move his home siyuation may well have changed.

I think it's up to your SS to speak with his mum and stepdad to resolve the domestic issue. I don't think your DH or you should get involved.

How is his brother living at home "at the expense of", you do realise that there are families that have more children than bedrooms, most people seem to make it work.

Stepmooster Thu 27-Dec-12 19:23:08

DH wasnt interested in getting involved until DSS started complaining. I guess DH thinks he has to do something. He shall have to tell DSS that its up to his mum then.

I dunno if DSS is unhappy he may well want to live here he gets grief from his sister all the time.

LineRunner Thu 27-Dec-12 19:26:45

But an 11 year old and a 15 year old are bound to bicker, surely.

AmberLeaf Thu 27-Dec-12 19:27:33

I think you need a lot more to go on than what the 11 yr old is saying when prompted and even then, it is still not you or your DHs business really, unless of course the boy is in danger which it doesnt sound like at all.

Stepmooster Thu 27-Dec-12 19:35:33

How do we get more info to go on? Does DH not discuss these conversations at all with the mother? They do afterall have equal parenting rights?

DH actually find it sad to hear that his son and his sister are falling out as he felt she was his guardian when he left the marriage. The brother was a bit wayward when he was still living there and he thought he might end up like this. DH thinks hes a bad influence on DSS. DH would rather his brother moved out than split DSS and sister up. He can see his son wanting to live here if nothing changes in a year or two. despite what you may think he doesnt really want that. Is a sad situation seems like a chaotic home life for DSS.

purpleroses Thu 27-Dec-12 19:37:34

It's natural that your DP wants to sort thing out for his DS but he needs to accept that there are some things he sadly cannot fix. Most 18 year olds still live at home and it really is up to his mum to decide what's the best balance between the needs of everyone in her household.

Sad situation? Fgs you and your dh are being completely dramatic, your making out your dss life is so awful when it sounds like many many families these days, siblings argue but underneath will love each other deeply, the economic climate makes it difficult for many people to upsize.

Stepmooster Thu 27-Dec-12 20:10:10

This on its own is not so bad add in other things such as DSS wanting to spend holidays with his dad and DH having to go through solicitors to achieve it. Hearing from DSS that his mother involved him on the financial settlement discussions which gave him night terrors at 8 years old. Seeing your DSS wearing clothes that are too small and tight knowing your DH pays a heck of a lot maintenance but mummy has a new car, been on holiday etc. Thats sad is it not?

Arisbottle Thu 27-Dec-12 20:35:03

My children are all well cared for but you can catch them in clothes that are too small .

Children are experts at make you look crap,

How do you know he had night terrors and discuss financial matters with his mum? At eight I would imagine financial speak is all 'blah blah blah' to him. If your dh is so concerned why has he not addressed these matters with his solicitor? It all seems very odd tbh.

Stepmooster Thu 27-Dec-12 20:56:07

He had night terrors when he stayed with his dad. DSS told his dad that mummy told him that daddy wanted to sell the house and make them homeless. In June DSS wrote a letter to both his mum and dad asking to see his dad more and to see dad and mum at xmas time.

NatashaBee Thu 27-Dec-12 20:56:58

I can see why it's frustrating for your DH to see that his DS doesn't get a room to himself whilst DH is paying the mortgage - but it will not end well if he attempts to interfere and dictate who should have which room, and if the only issue with his current living arrangements is that he has to share a room, it's very unfair to uproot the child. When I was 10 I lived with my family in a 2 bedroom house. I suggested to my parents that the other 4 family members should share a room so that I could have my own room blush children are not always capable of seeing that certain things are for the good of the entire family. if your DH wants to help, can he buy some sort of furniture to allow then to divide the room in half so they can have some privacy?

Stepmooster Thu 27-Dec-12 21:02:27

My DH had addressed these matters with the solicitors. But there wasnt a lot he could do living with his parents.

LineRunner Thu 27-Dec-12 21:30:05

It's unusual for a man to still be paying the mortgage on a house being lived in by a new husband. How do you feel about that, if you don't mind me asking? (If you mind, just say so. It's ok.)

Arisbottle Thu 27-Dec-12 21:31:44

We happily paid for a house for the mother of a stepson knowing that one day she may move a new husband in. We just want our stepson to be happy and for that happen his mother needs to feel secure.

LineRunner Thu 27-Dec-12 21:33:28

But you are unusual (in a good way), I feel, Arisbottle.

Arisbottle Thu 27-Dec-12 21:34:02

I hope we are not, all parents should just want the best for their children.

VBisme Thu 27-Dec-12 21:39:16

Yes, but not all parents can afford to pay for 2 houses.....

izzyhasanewchangeling Thu 27-Dec-12 21:40:48

OK I got bored of reading all the arguing.

1. He needs to stop paying the mortgage, which is in effect him subsidising the ex in her new marriage, CSA is to cover the maintenance and extra if he can provide it and wants to, also CSA do not recognise money paid re a mortgage as maint.

As long as he is paying the mortgage there is no incentive for her to sort it out.

2. He cannot suggest that the oldest moves out, that is none of his business, Id go spare if that suggestion was made to me.

3. Of course he can see if DSS wants to live with you, but chances are he wont want to - they tend to cling to mum.

DSS is 11 and more than old enough to have a view on where he lives.

izzyhasanewchangeling Thu 27-Dec-12 21:42:53

and it would be a bad move for DSS now but nothing to stop it taking place in Secondary and him moving to a school by you, they change all their friends when they go to secondary school anyway.

Arisbottle Thu 27-Dec-12 21:44:30

At the time DH was living in a tiny bedsit so that he could afford the mortgage and other expenses. When his parents died the inheritance went to pay the mortgage. When I met DH despite earning a good wage he was living on the breadline and he move into my home that I had bought for myself and gradually we traded up . With one of our children I had the bare minimum for maternity leave.

Arisbottle Thu 27-Dec-12 21:45:29

Why should he not continue to pay the mortgage on the home in which his child and the mother of his child lives

izzyhasanewchangeling Thu 27-Dec-12 21:48:32

The woman is remarried, at what point does she take some self responsibility?

I would never have expected my exh to pay the mortgage on my house?

izzyhasanewchangeling Thu 27-Dec-12 21:52:10

I always consider that if I was financially unable to put a roof over my childs head, that that child may have been better off with dad. You may see what your husband did as a good and noble thing arisbottle, but I actually believe a child needs a decent home with BOTH parents, so your husband living in a tiny bedsit, where his child didnt have a room, a bad thing, not a good thing.

I also think using his inheritance to pay for a house for his ex wife, rather than himself, is a bad thing, it does not guarentee a home for life, what if ex remarried and gets divorced after 15 years, the new exh becomes entitled to a share of the equity, unless there is some solid legal paperwork drawn up and the exw is merely maintaining a lifetime interest in a house that belongs to your husband or his children.

You see something good, I see something foolish.

Same actions different views.

Arisbottle Thu 27-Dec-12 22:26:21

But the bedsit was temporary until he got back on his feet and from what I have been told he was at the house with his son every evening and would just go home to go to bed. Soon he had rented himself a larger place and until today he has had 50% care of his son, as we do today.

DH has always been insistent that his son should not suffer because he left the marital home. So he has grown up in the home that he would have done if my husband has not left. They had planned that DSS would have benefited from having a full time parent at home, there is no way that his mother could have stayed at home until DSS started school so DH covered her living expenses which included her mortgage.

My DH had a good career and knew that in time he could buy a home and have a good quality of living, his ex could not manage that on her own whilst raising a child on her own.

When DH met me I was a high earner and therefore again we knew that in time we would be able to pay off our own home and by doing so for his ex we gave her some financial independence. It also allowed us to have the large family we both wanted without feeling that we were depriving our existing son. His ex wife can live in the house as long as she wishes but eventually it will go to our DSS.

Arisbottle Thu 27-Dec-12 22:27:53

My husband's marriage failed when his stepson was a baby and therefore he did not need a room of his own with my DH, as I said they parented my DSS together in the marital home.

izzyhasanewchangeling Thu 27-Dec-12 22:38:01

His ex wife can live in the house as long as she wishes but eventually it will go to our DSS

How do you know that? As I said "unless there is some solid legal paperwork drawn up", if there was appropriate legal protection drawn up, then fair enough, but then he was more or less "lending" his exw the house, not paying the mortgage for her, as he (or DSS) maintained ownership of the actual property.

And in the current economic climate, nothing is guaranteed.

Personally, I would not have wanted to be so beholden to my ex, nor do I think for children of separated / divorced parents, that contact should take place in FMH.

I can see why you think your exh has done a good thing, its not a path I would have chosen, especially if it meant I didn't have enough money to take maternity leave with my children, I would feel they were the ones who had been deprived of my time.

I just have a different view of things, I do think though, that given the financial situation you are describing for your DH, it is unfair to expect the OPs DH to be able to contribute in the same way, not to expect him to - it may have been the right way for your DH, but it wouldnt be for everyone, and I especially do not see why the DH here should be paying the mortgage on a house there are other children living in and a new husband, from what I read, the exw, the new husband, the older DD and older DS are not his responsibility - so 4 out of the 5 people living there are not his responsibility.

You may have been happy with the situation, but I wouldn't have been, I expected to get of my backside and go to work when exh and I split up (in fact I waited until I had a promotion and a FT job before I left to ensure that was the case).

It smacks of financial control, and to a certain degree preventing the ex from moving on with her life, all under the guise of being a martyr or possibly guilt, guilt (even unplaced unnecessary guilt) makes people do strange things.

We all make life plans, I certainly never got married with the intention of getting divorced, but life changes.

If you ask me, you have had no choice but to be happy with the set up as is, if you want to be with your husband.

izzyhasanewchangeling Thu 27-Dec-12 22:40:01

When I met DH despite earning a good wage he was living on the breadline

and this contradicts that he was doing just fine under that arrangement tbh.

Arisbottle Fri 28-Dec-12 00:47:18

There is solid legal paperwork drawn up.

Yes I have to be happy with the set up and initially it was hard, however I grew to love DH because of that setup. We were friends before we were dating and I knew both him and his ex. I know that if anything were to happen between DH and I he would continue to be a fantastic father.

When the split first happened I did think they would get back together and I suspect that they hoped for the same. DH moved out of the marital home and rented a bedsit type place up the road. As I said earlier he was handing over almost very penny to his ex, and I think you are right, guilt played a part in that. His job at the time was reliant on meeting targets and bonuses and because he was heartbroken he was not bringing home as much money as he should have done. As I think I said earlier he was eating his evening meal in the marital home and then going home when DSS had gone down for the night . I think this went on for about a year. When we started dating he could never afford to pay for a meal, buy gifts, even meals at home I paid for all the ingredients . Life was financially tough until DSS started school, however we always knew that it would get better so we were not worried. DH had not created a 5 year hole in his CV and he is now reaping the reward from that. His ex did have a great hole in her pension and career progression and he feels that he needs to pay her back for that, as well as for caring wonderfully for our DSS.

Because they split when DSS was a baby it did not cause any extra upset or raise false hope by DH having contact in the former marital home. DSS who is now in his late teens, still lives between both homes and we are all in and out of each others homes. We see ourselves as one extended family. We alternate Christmases and stay with each other and do the same for birthdays and other big events. In some ways it is easier because I knew them both previously.

DH does not want to control her at all, that was one reason for paying off the mortgage so that we are not as involved in her financial affairs. When DSS went to school she was also able to gradually go back to work full time, meaning that over time our financial input could decrease. DH would never dictate to his ex how to spend maintenance or who could live in the house.

I was sad that I could not have much maternity leave with my eldest son, but that is how if often works when you have a second child. DH already had a child and he had made a financial commitment to that child and therefore it would have been wrong for me to force him to go back on that agreement just because I was so keen to start a family as soon as I could.

His ex has moved on with her life, she has had relationships and as I said we have never dictated who is or is not in the house.

Yes it was made clear to me from day one that I to accept the situation and at first that was difficult, but that is the life of a step parent - a life you freely choose.

Arisbottle Fri 28-Dec-12 00:51:37

Our stepson at the time was better off staying with his mother for lots of reasons:

I would imagine he was still being breasted
DH did not want to be a SAHP, his mother did
His mother hAs chosen a relatively low paid profession , my DH a potentially high paying one. Therefore it made sense for my DH to be the breadwinner.

He could have kept DSS with him and stayed in the house, he would have required a full time nanny. That would have been daft when he had a mother who wanted to look after him. I don't know how much a full time nanny earns but I suspect it is not far off what DH was paying his ex in maintenance. So even financially it made sense.

VBisme Fri 28-Dec-12 01:04:07

I'm slightly confused by your posts, either your DH has gifted the house to his DeX, which is what you first mentioned, or there are strict legal documentation which will effectively mean that she has an agreement that she can live in the house but it belongs to your DH or his DS, i.e. you haven't "given" her a house.

If you have gifted her the house and her current will states that it will go to her DS, this could be changed at any time on a whim by her without any consultation, if for example she had additional children with her new husband.

If your fine with that, then great.

It sounds like you have a great relationship with her, so you're clearly doing something right.

Arisbottle Fri 28-Dec-12 01:36:49

Sorry, the house is hers to live in for as long as she wants, it is a house that she loves so I cannot see her moving for a long time and DSS will be off to university soon . However it will eventually be passed on to DSS. If she wants to sell there is a lump sum that she can take out but the rest will go to DSS. The lump sum should be a very healthy figure which would allow her to buy a modest house outright or put a sizeable payment on a larger one.

Having discussed it the plan is for her new husband to move in with her and they will sell his own rather lovely home. As I said DSS is in his late teens so I am it sure that they will have children . However he is quite a bit younger than her and he has no children, so we cannot be sure.

izzyhasanewchangeling Fri 28-Dec-12 01:39:06

So if there is solid legal paperwork drawn up dictating what can happen to be house - your husband's money and inheritance is protected either for him or dss.

As opposed to you suggesting the OP s husband continues to pAy the mortgage on a house where there are 3 adults living and1 adolescent.

There is no iinfant to protect in the OPs case - plus your scenario sounds extreme and while I am glad you are content and happy wIth it and hindsight says it worked - it sounds like a recipie for disaster to me a d unworkable for most.

Stepmooster Fri 28-Dec-12 07:16:12

I had a chat with DH last night, and yes it does really get to him that he is paying to house 3 adults in a house that his son has half a room to himself. He hasn't yet pushed to realise the charge because he was trying to sort out the contact issue with his son, and he was sort of hoping that his ex and her new husband would 'step-up'.

We don't know the new husband's financial situation, although she started co-habiting with him during the divorce process and denied it right up until 2nd hearing. We only know he has a property the other side of the country. She always said that he was unemployed during settlement. Recently during course of negotiating contact arrangment ex advised DH's solicitor that new husband was out of work. But when DH was arranging to take DSS for a week when he was ill, she told DH via text that her husband couldn't drive him to meet us halfway at the time we wanted originally, because he was at work so him not working is a lie. DSS also told DH that his stepdad has always had a job. During settlement DH had his exs bank statements which showed a grand or 2 here or there being paid in by cash with reference 'new husbands name' he challenged his ex as to where this money came from if he was unemployed. They settled without having had it explained. DH has concerns that new husband is up to something dodgy, but is keeping his nose out.

The FMH is a nice house in an expensive area, DH thinks that his ex and new husband like it too much to want to move out without a fight. The new husbands house is in an area of the country that has seen huge house price falls so he's probably not selling it hoping it's going to pick up in value. His house was originally on the market during divorce settlement but as soon as settlement reached it was taken off the market.

DH and I want to move closer to DSS its best for DSS and his sister to be together. The only way to do that is to get the charge realised, but there is no guarantee that once the house is sold that the ex will stay in the area and then there are 3 kids and 2 dads not seeing their kids if they move to the other end of the country. DH is under pressure from his parents to do this, he was sort of hoping having the chat about bedrooms with the mother might prevent the need. If DSS is happy and not moaning to DH or grandparents, DH not feeling so shafted and also not seeing his son upset.

Thank you for everyone's input and DH is not going to raise the bedroom matter with his ex nor mention to DSS if he wants to live here. Other than telling him he can come here as much as he likes. DH is however going to speak to his solicitor about the charge. Although the charge/mortgage wasn't my original question it is evident that is what is motivating DH (and of course DSS moaning about bedrooms).

Inertia Fri 28-Dec-12 07:38:57

Seems reasonable to discuss the issue of the charge on the house with the solicitor. Of course it was right for your DH to pay the mortgage on his children's home, but now that his ex wife has remarried the situation has changed and needs to be re-evaluated to find a new solution that's reasonable for everyone.

Your DH should avoid presenting the issue as him paying for 3 adults who could all pay for themselves- better to say that he needs to release some of his share of the house to live nearer to his children and make contact arrangements more workable.

VBisme Fri 28-Dec-12 10:16:53

It's great that you've got to the bottom of your DHs concerns. The solicitor will be able to sort something out (but the situation may get fraught in the short term).
If her new partner has a job in the area then it's unlikely they'd uproot everyone just to be difficult. So hopefully you can settle near to your son.
(I don't suppose you could afford to buy the FMH?)

Arisbottle Fri 28-Dec-12 11:04:34

I don't think I said that the OPs husband should buy them somewhere new outright however they may be able to offer more financial help to get somewhere larger. Alternatively they could offer to have the son living with them.

The first priority however needs to be sorting out frazzled relationships as this will do far more harm than sharing a bedroom - which is the reality of life for many children. My children share bedrooms. They are all part of an extended family and need to stop trying to catch each other out and sort out their issues without running to a solicitor all the time.

Stepmooster Fri 28-Dec-12 11:59:01

VBisme, well yes we could afford to by the FMH but we would have to sell my home first. Do you not think that would be even worse for relations? That my DH gets the house his ex obviously has a huge emotional attachment to. How would DSS and siblings feel if we took it on, let DSS stay and kicked the others out? I assume that is what you mean to do, otherwise it would be very creepy living there otherwise.

I agree Arisbottle that we need to stop running to solicitors all the time, but when one party is playing games with contact and now remarrying and not realising the charge what are you supposed to do?

What lessons in life is it teaching DSS that his mother can do whatever she wants and use him as a pawn?

And having thought about it a lot more since my OP, if the family does end up splitting up because my DH wants his money and to be off the mortgage then 1) she shouldn't have agreed to the court order in the first place, one that SHE wanted when she was already co-habitting with her now new husband
2) She shouldn't have married him less than 12 months after the order was agreed if she couldn't afford to keep the home, takeover the mortgage and buy my DH out.

She is not a child, and needs to stop playing the bloody victim all the time and take responsibility for her life and actions.

CatchingMockingbirds Fri 28-Dec-12 12:11:10

Your dh seems so callous towards his stepson, he was his step-father for 11 years but now that he's not together with the mother he wants him to move out and sees him as a bad influence on his real son.

Stepmooster Fri 28-Dec-12 12:25:58

he's not callous, he's suggesting he move in with his dad for a bit of structure. As soon as my DH left the home he was drinking and smoking at age of 14. When DH tried to talk to his ex about it, as he did parent him for 11 years and was called 'dad' by the boy she told him he wasn't his concern anymore. Since then he's been expelled from a school (which I only found out last night), and now dropped out of college and using home as a doss house.

DH used to care a great deal about the other kids and still does. He was allowed contact until the divorce settlement didnt start going the ex's way and then suddenly her solicitor says you're not allowed to see them anymore. What he fears is that current bedroom arrangements is causing DSS and his sister to hate each other and for DSS to hate his brother too.

What would you do if you had 3 kids and the eldest was not studying and drinking most nights and coming home late disrupting the household. Would you ask their dad who lived nearby to look after them to give some normality to the other 2. Perhaps a father-figure is what the boy needs?!

I'm sure if this were a parenting thread about my 18 year old son is disrupting the household alot of MNers would be suggesting he goes and lives with his dad.

Stepmooster Fri 28-Dec-12 12:27:13

But anyway as I've said already DH isn't going to ask the ex to suggest her son move in with his dad he's going to seek to realise his charge so we can move near to DSS.

CatchingMockingbirds Fri 28-Dec-12 12:36:33

It sounds like he took the divorce really hard, but tbh you're basing this on the moans of an 11 year old. Your dh isn't there so doesn't know about the comings and goings of his step-son, he could be job hunting and having no luck despite trying hard (like several people I know, my DP included), studying may not have suited him (it doesn't suit everyone), and he could only be going out at the weekends (as most 18yr olds do). You can't base his behaviour, to the extent of your dh pushing for him to be removed from his family home, on what his little brother is saying.

izzyhasanewchangeling Fri 28-Dec-12 12:40:53

I can't see why he doesn't ask ss if he wants to live with you.

I don't think an 11 year old boy and 15 year old girl should be sharing.

The other children are notbyour problem - your only focus helping S S.

Stepmooster Fri 28-Dec-12 13:22:12

hi Izzy upthread i got a lot of flak for suggesting that, 50 miles from his mum and family etc. But if DSS wants to then great. DH was assuming he had to discuss with his ex about it first, or should he just speak with DSS and inform afterwards???

I dont buy a lot of the criticisms about how its economic times so the kids should share. There are 3 sets of parents and 2 fathers who have bedrooms for their children. As long as amicable and ample contact is faciltated what the heck is the problem with one of the dads looking after one of the boys instead of mum?

Stepmooster Fri 28-Dec-12 13:37:20

whatever happens, DH has to pursue his charge from FMH. We can't move without it, and if DSS wants to live with us it would be easier if we were nearer to his siblings. At any rate if DSS comes to live with us DH would have to seek his charge, and the ex may move to other end of the country to live with her new husband in his property. Or move somewhere else for that matter, then we would have ended up moving for no reason.

Perhaps DH should cross that bridge first and unless DSS explicitly asks to move here with us then leave the bedroom issue until that matter is resolved.

izzyhasanewchangeling Fri 28-Dec-12 13:46:06

I would ask him what he wants, dont suggest, just ask, 50 miles isnt that far, we live 20 miles away from my exh and managed to share care, gosh DS even did overnights and went to school from exes in morning, it just meant being organised and getting up at 7.00.

Mumsnet is populated by mums, who cant imagine living away from their children, which is fine, but there is nothing wrong with looking outside the box.

Personally I think your husbands ex is taking the proverbial.

What a great start to married life, someone else paying your mortgage while you wait for property prices to rise.

Arisbottle Fri 28-Dec-12 14:05:57

It does sound like the best idea is to go for 50% or full residency .

pinguthepenguin Fri 28-Dec-12 14:33:38

I'm pretty staggered at your husbands belief that he can comment on the behaviour of his sons brother, all of which, as another poster says is based on the sayings of an 11year old. To say he should move out at 18 years old is really harsh, and absolutely and completely not your husbands place to even suggest it. I also agree with other posters that the burden of deciding where he lives should not be placed on an 11year old without even bringing it up with his mum first. I would be furious at this behaviour. The adults need to talk about this before it's mentioned to the child. Given the distance between you, what you are proposing is a whole new life for him, which in itself could be a great thing, but needs careful management and none done through getting to the child first.

What is unfair is this whole financial situation you are in and I agree completely with others that you should not be subsidising others to live for free. I think this what your DH should be focusing on for now and let DS's bedroom situation be dealt with by the person's who's roof he is under at the time. Could you imagine how you'd feel if ex tried to dictate sleeping arrangements at yours? I honestly think you'll feel so much better ( and less resentful, which you understandably are) if you deal with the real issue at hand, which is the finances.

You should never, never ask an 11 year old who they want to live with, could you imagine the stress and worry that would place on a child? I have absolutely no problem if a child lives with either parent, 50/50 can work well for some children, but this situation seems to be taken on the say of an 11 year old child which is complete madness. You know, sometimes children can say what they think you want to hear, my own Dss has done this in the past, Dh and his ex were very aware of this, and even though they werent the best of friends they spoke decently with regard to their son.

Absolutely, your Dh should not be paying totally for the MH and steps should be taken to resolve this immediately.

You seem to have a very strong negative opinion on this mother and her other children (which is totally natural) however from what you have said you have never even met them, of course your DH is going to be bitterly negative about her as a wife if she had continued affairs, but, that does not mean that she is a bad mother.

What would be best for this child is if your Dh and his ex wife grow up and put their bitterness to one side and do what is best for the child, by the sound of it, you all think the other side is failing this child, and each could do better. How nice for this boy to be piggy in the middle of warring parents.

izzyhasanewchangeling Fri 28-Dec-12 17:38:05

I agree with the last post under normal circumstances - but having dealt with an absolutely impossible ex who categorically refuses to put her children first it's not always That simple or straight forward.

I have met some parents through work like you say izzy, but I`m going on reading the op and her subsequent posts. There is nothing to suggest in my eyes from whats been said that her Dhs ex is a bad mother, bad ex maybe but thats very different.

Stepmooster Fri 28-Dec-12 20:47:37

My DH initial thought was to try and start a dialogue with his ex regarding the bedroom issue and suggest that either the eldest stayed with his dad, or if that wasn't an option offer to have DSS FT here. He wasn't going to speak with DSS directly as kids do say things to please and we've already experienced that once.

But since there is a huge difference of opinion on the matter and DH are reading these posts and can't see how to go about it the 'right' way DH is going to sort out the charge first. See how the land lies and then decide what to do.

Regarding whether the ex is a bad mother or not, she has used reducing contact with DH as a way of punishment. Used to like to dictate to DH what weekends and when, holidays he could see his son (usually so she could go away on her own with now new husband). In my eyes that's not good parenting. But on the other hand I have never once thought I ought to be his mum instead or even act like that, only said nice things about her in front of DSS. Becuase your mum is your mum no matter what flaws they have.

DH doesnt want to ask DSS directly who he wants to live with, thinks its going to come across as, "who do you love most..." and that's not going to help anyone and probably upset DSS.

PoppyPrincess Sat 29-Dec-12 12:07:38

A solicitor told us that if DP's ex was to move another man in to the FMH then legally she has to buy him out within 6 months. I'd seek legal advice about that. In fact it surprises me that he's managed to get divorced without sorting the finances first.

In the short term if you really want to move then you could rent out your home and rent one closer to your DSS, more and more people are doing this now as it can be difficult to get a mortgage at the mo.

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