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to expect my boyfriend to make more of an effort with my kids?

(171 Posts)
Vikki88 Wed 13-Nov-13 20:33:35

My boyfriend has been living with us for 3 months now and generally it's gone well. He's a good guy, he cares about me, he works hard and I'm happy with how things are going.

However, the one thing that is bothering me is his lack of an effort to build any real relationship with my 2 kids. He seems completely disinterested in them at times and I can't help but think he sees them as a chore rather than something to be a part of his life. Don't get me wrong, he helps me out with them & he's never voiced anything negative about them to me (he knows what would happen if he ever did) but he doesn't go that extra mile.

I made a thread earlier about the behavioural problems I'm currently having with my 7 year old, both at home and at school. I'd love it for him to step up and try and play a part and help him as the 'male figure' in his life but it doesn't seem to be happening. I've raised it tentatively with him and he says the right things but rarely, if ever, acts upon them.

I feel like this is something that I shouldn't need to ask him and that he shouldn't need persuading to do - it should be automatic. I know he's not their father but that shouldn't stop him from being a father figure or male influence in their lives. I don't think I'm expecting too much am I?

CoffeeTea103 Wed 13-Nov-13 20:54:26

I read your thread about your son. It sounds like his behaviour is linked to your bf moving in. Think you need to reassess this living situation, put your son's current issues first and then think of having someone be a male figure to your kids.

womblesofwestminster Wed 13-Nov-13 20:54:29

1st question: why did you invite him to live with you so soon?

2nd question: are you on glue?

YoureBeingASillyBilly Wed 13-Nov-13 20:55:33

Move him back out. You can still date him but right now isnt the time to live together. Your child isnt coping with it and your boyfriend doenst seem to have the right attitude at the moment. Move him out. Get your child behaviour sorted get to know your boyfriend better, get your dcs to know him better then reconsider living together when you get to a point where you both share the same ideas about how your family should work.

DevonFolk Wed 13-Nov-13 20:56:08

I've been with my BF for almost two years. He has children of his own (grown up) and I have a 3 year old DD. They adore each other and he's a vital part of our lives. We're not at the moving in together stage yet, partly because of my ow insecurities, but that's another thread. BUt when we do move in together there is no way I would ever expect him to suddenly become DD's father figure or automatically take on childcare duties.

LaBuveuse Wed 13-Nov-13 20:56:13

So he moved in without getting to know your children and you never discussed how this was going to work or anything? I HOPE this a joke thread.

softlysoftly Wed 13-Nov-13 20:56:25

Yab massively u.

Do not expect him or your kids to suddenly adopt a "father" type role after 3 months living together shock

I can't think of anything more guaranteed to push your 7 yr old behaviour into overdrive than some random bloke laying down the law!

That's your job btw or his actual fathers...

dietcokeandwine Wed 13-Nov-13 20:57:06

I wouldn't be at all surprised if your 7yo's deterioration in behaviour is directly linked to you moving your boyfriend in, perhaps your little boy's way of trying to tell you how unhappy he is?

Sorry, but moving in with someone three months into a relationship - no matter how long you might have known them previously - is just not a good idea when you have young children. If it was just you, then fair enough - but you have to prioritise your children. From what you say they had pretty much never even met him or spent any kind of time with him prior to his moving in? I feel really sorry for your children tbh.

I would be suggesting to your boyfriend that you take a bit of a step back, that he moves out and that you just perhaps build up spending time with him and your children gradually. A day out to the zoo, a trip to the park, or for a pizza, etc etc. Small, less threatening chunks of time that would allow them to build a relationship with him and vice versa.

Vikki88 Wed 13-Nov-13 20:59:46

As I've said, I've known him far, far longer than 6 months - that's only long we've been in a relationship. He is not a stranger in anyway, I first knew him from back in school!

To get back to the point, my eldest has no contact with his father. My youngest does.

Comments like "Is this a joke thread" aren't helpful & are why I've rarely seeked advice in the past. Please keep them to yourself.

MatryoshkaDoll Wed 13-Nov-13 21:00:45

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

littlemisssarcastic Wed 13-Nov-13 21:01:43

It doesn't matter how long you have known him Vikki. Your 7 yr old DS does not like him and you have moved him in after dating him for 3 months.

Why doesn't your DS like him?

LeBeauReve Wed 13-Nov-13 21:03:42

People are so nasty and judgemental on here sometimes. Somebody has come asking for help and/or advice, there's really no need to be so mean and rude.
Sorry OP I don't really have any advice as this isn't something I have any experience of.

littlemisssarcastic Wed 13-Nov-13 21:04:01

Look, I know being a single parent is tough, but don't you see that you've rushed into this a bit?

Just take a step back, and enjoy dating for a while, what's the rush to move him in?

lunar1 Wed 13-Nov-13 21:04:04

you have moved a man into your childrens home who is a stranger to them. I feel very sorry for your children.

WooWooOwl Wed 13-Nov-13 21:04:07

Certain comments probably aren't helpful, but what do you expect people to say to help when you have knowing set yourself up for issues?

You have brought this situation on yourself, and the only solution is to move your boyfriend back out and concentrate on your children. But you probably don't want to do that.

Fairylea Wed 13-Nov-13 21:04:11

Regardless of how long you've known him as a friend it is far, far too soon to move him in. Whatever happened to "dating"?! That's when you get to know someone (and being with them in a relationship is very different to knowing them as a friend). You would have graduallyinvolved him with your children and this sort of thing would have shown up... then you'd give him the boot!

Move him out. Start dating. If he isn't brilliant with your dc he is not right for you.

softlysoftly Wed 13-Nov-13 21:04:14

How long has your DS known him?

From your op I'd guess he doesn't so you knowing him liner is a totally moot point sorry.

womblesofwestminster Wed 13-Nov-13 21:04:27

Why did you move him in after only 3 months?

dietcokeandwine Wed 13-Nov-13 21:07:14

But Vikki regardless of how long you've known him, you have said yourself that his relationship with them was minimal because they were usually with their grandparents when you met up.

You know him well.

Your children don't know him at all.

And therein lies the problem. You need to give them time to get to know him, and him to get to know them. And allow a relationship to develop healthily in its own time. Moving him in this early is just too much too soon.

breatheslowly Wed 13-Nov-13 21:08:01

I think that if he tried to take on a parental role at this point he might well be told "you aren't my Dad, stop trying to be my Dad". And that would be a perfectly reasonable response to someone your DS has only known for 3 months.

Vikki88 Wed 13-Nov-13 21:11:25

I am genuinely surprised/shocked at the level of reaction on here. I can't help but think that maybe I've described the situation badly? No-one in 'real life' has reacted in a similar way.

My kids come first in absolutely everything I do, this is the whole reason I made this thread as I want my bf to step up and show more interest in them than he currently is. I want him to have a relationship with them, and I want them to have a father figure they can look up to.

Littlemisssarcastic Even though I said he doesn't like him, what I really meant is he doesn't like the change. And I understand that. If he asked me to move my bf out the house, I'd do it right now.

womblesofwestminster Wed 13-Nov-13 21:12:43

Why did you move him in after only 3 months?

basgetti Wed 13-Nov-13 21:13:17

That is putting an awful lot of responsibility on a 7 year old, expecting him to have to ask you to move him out. You should make appropriate decisions in the first place so that it doesn't come to that.

ilovesooty Wed 13-Nov-13 21:14:09

I can't help but think that maybe I've described the situation badly?

How can you describe moving someone who's a virtual stranger to your children into your home any differently?

Coldlightofday Wed 13-Nov-13 21:15:21

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

ConfusedPixie Wed 13-Nov-13 21:15:49

Jesus. I knew Dp for years and moved in with him after three months. But I would not have done that with kids on the scene! You're mad, your kids don't know him that well and needed a lot longer than three months to get to know him. Put your kids first, move him out and take things very slowly with this guy!

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