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To be so fucking confused

(73 Posts)
Shockedandsickened Sun 21-Apr-19 20:40:29

Have a 7mo DD with DP. We live in his home country. I am feeling massively homesick for the UK, this relationship isn't going well, and I just want to go home and start a new life. But it would mean DD could only see her dad a couple times a year for long stretches of a couple months (long haul) and this is breaking my heart. He is such a wonderful father and we do about 50 50 shared care. I wanted my DD to have a wonderful father she saw every day and was close to, which she does. But if I left I would be taking that away from her. I am just so homesick for the UK and also know it would give my daughter better opportunities. I am so confused.

Justanotherlurker Thu 25-Apr-19 21:24:24

Why are people trying to pick apart cultural similarities under the cloak of some perceived dog whistle.

It shows more about the person trying to frame the argument whilst ignoring history and geopolitics whilst they themselves are un-ironically using the birthed in America IDPOL stack of presuming its because of skin colour.

HowardSpring Thu 25-Apr-19 21:00:44

No assumptions were made Scarcely - the OP herself said it is longhaul, culturally very different and that her DD would have better opportunities in the UK than there.

Scarcelyburnt Thu 25-Apr-19 20:48:50

By that I mean recent, small colonies.

Scarcelyburnt Thu 25-Apr-19 20:47:42

I also don't see how the UK is culturally the same or similar to the US unless you mean predominantly white. The USA is massive and the culture and laws are less like the UK than say one of the UK's former colonies.

Scarcelyburnt Thu 25-Apr-19 20:17:11

So because the country is not like the US or Canada or Australia it means the country is culturally very different? Is that a code word for not being predominantly white. Also just because the country in question is different from the UK, it is assumed that the OP is better off returning to the UK rather than seeking to make a life inp that country so that her daughter can have easy access to her father?

Hawkinsfirefly99 Thu 25-Apr-19 20:08:34

Google Sally Faulkner. She lost her two children to her Lebanese husband. They split up snd he took them on a 'holiday' to Lebanon and never returned them. She hasn't seen them in 4 years. It's a heart breaking story but very very real when you're dealing with countries that differ in laws and culture to our own.

Mummyshark2019 Thu 25-Apr-19 19:41:10

I agree with outpinked. Definitely the best time to move at this age. And staying together for the child never works out.

mathanxiety Thu 25-Apr-19 19:18:36

jaimemai
There is a year and a half between a baby of 7 months and a 2 year old toddler. There is astronomical growth and cognitive development in that year and a half. It is the one window, in truth, where a baby really will not be aware at all of one parent not being there every day. To state that there is no difference between a baby of 7 months and a toddler is daft.

Equal rights does not = equal time or effort spent caring for a child. You have conflated two completely different things. The vast majority of the time it is a mother who takes the long mat leave, goes on the mommy track at work, adapts a career to the demands of caring for children, goes part time, works nights, or opts in the first place for a career where caring for children is more possible.

Children cannot be in different homes for half the year. School has to be fitted in somewhere. Activities, friendships, community relationships, and a sense of belonging somewhere are all important. At some point the right of the child herself to a sense of continuity in her own life becomes the primary focus and parents should be able to respect that, not stand on their rights.

I just see way too many mothers making things hard for fathers.
I see the opposite. I did the opposite. Just by dint of my children being born in a certain country, the decision on where to live the next 30 years of my life was made for me, regardless of how my marriage deteriorated or how difficult divorce might make my circumstances, how isolating a life with an abusive partner might be, how bad for the children the whole situation was.

The law makes it very easy for one partner to simply fold his arms and stand on his rights to EOW contact if it all goes tits up, and the fallout for the spouse and children can be immense.

The idea that mothers make it hard for fathers is piffle.

There are many fathers groups out there talking about this issue, about the cruelty of not being allowed to see their children.
Sad to see you have been taken in by groups of mostly misogynistic men, many of whom are animated by a desire to punish their former partners and are not above using their children to this end. Many of them are divorced because they are abusive and continue the abuse by proxy or directly because the mothers are obliged by visitation agreements to have contact with them. Women have gone so far as to opt to abort pregnancies so they can avoid being tied to abusive men for the 18 years it takes to shake them off.

Italiangreyhound Thu 25-Apr-19 17:20:47

Jaimemai

"I just see way too many mothers making things hard for fathers. And thinking that they are the primary carer. You are not."

My expeeience of life has been that mums often bend over backwards for children, cook and clean and care for them and ferry them around. Not all mums, but many. Yes dads can do a lot for their kids but in my experience the vast bulk of childcare is still done by mums.

So, mums, in my experience, are often the primary care givers.

"There are many fathers groups out there talking about this issue, about the cruelty of not being allowed to see their children." Clearly it is very sad when good parents cannot see their children."

But we do not need to imagine how the other parent on this case feels. He is eilling for her to go. She's asking advice and the background is that her partner/ex seems ok for her to go back to her country.

FredFlinstoneMadeOfBones Wed 24-Apr-19 12:58:00

@Jaimemai

I think it would be massively disruptive for a child to live with one parent in one country for 6 months and another parent in another country for 6 months it just wouldn't work long term. Of course the father has rights but it can't be assumed that because a child was born in a particular country that both mother and father will remain in that country for ever. Especially after a break up.

outpinked Wed 24-Apr-19 11:51:53

I think jaime is massively projecting here. My parents separated when I was a baby and it had absolutely no lasting effect on me. I still had a fantastic childhood and great relationships with both parents. Many families have this dynamic nowadays and the parents co-parent well. Also, Mother’s generally are the primary parent...

A child does need both parents but they also need their parents to be happy and feel stable. You’re currently very unhappy and I don’t see this getting any better, not when you have tried your best to settle for seven years. This will eventually project onto your DD, she will feel your misery in some way. It is not selfish to do what makes you feel fulfilled and happy just because you have a child, staying together for the children never ever works out.

You need to consider how much more difficult it will be to leave when your DD is in school. Now is definitely the easiest time to leave if you’re going to do it.

Jaimemai Wed 24-Apr-19 11:43:25

I just see way too many mothers making things hard for fathers. And thinking that they are the primary carer. You are not. Mothers and fathers have equal rights. There are many fathers groups out there talking about this issue, about the cruelty of not being allowed to see their children. It cannot go on like this. I used to have a relationship with a man abroad and If I had had a child with him I would not consider taking her away, unless we split the time up totally equally. As the Op works remotely she can easily have the child for six months of the year, and he can have the child for six months. If you are ever in doubt about what you should do, put yourself in the other parent's shoes, and ask "how would you feel if your precious child lived in a different country for ten months a year" ( whatever time you are thinking of).

Italiangreyhound Tue 23-Apr-19 20:00:31

mess her up...

Italiangreyhound Tue 23-Apr-19 19:59:52

Soontobe60 are you honesty suggesting a mother leave her child in a foreign country because it is the country of her dad's birth? I'd imagine that will me as her up a lot more than leasing less of her dad.

Jaimemai it is very tragic what happened to your dad. I think both parents are important but the reality is most dads so not do an equal share of childcare.

It sounds like your situation waa very hard and I am sorry. But people do not base where they love on grandparents, uncles and aunts. I had very little relationship with extended family (who all lived close) and it was not an issue.

Jaimemai Tue 23-Apr-19 17:06:01

I also spent the first 18 years of my life missing my home country. Missing the country that I was born in. If she is born there - she will feel a strong draw to it. I never liked my mother's country. Hopefully you take all of these answers into account. Best of luck

ahtellthee Tue 23-Apr-19 11:56:47

Helpful @Motoko

And it can happen with couples of same nationality who might move abroad for whatever reason, long or short term.

I always travel with a letter of consent from DH when travelling alone with DC, as it helps if questioned.

OP, sorry you are going through this. I think that it depends on where you as the parent providing the child will have the lost support. Most often this does mean the UK and most of my friends in situations similar to yours have ended up going back. Good luck

Motoko Tue 23-Apr-19 11:48:08

This is why I wouldn't marry and/or have children with someone from another country.

With more and more people from different countries getting together, this situation is only going to increase, with all the damage it causes.

Jaimemai Tue 23-Apr-19 11:26:29

I don't think that there is a huge month between a baby of seven months and a toddler of two. Next year she will be the same age that I was. My mother did maintain some contact with my father. We did see him for some stretches of time in his country. It was still INCREDIBLY hard for all of us. We all wanted to see each other every week. I cant explain the constant yearning and missing. Try to imagine your parent living in another country that you love very much and you cannot see when you want. It is an INCREDIBLE pain. Both me and my brother also did not forgive our mother for a very long time. OP if you work remotely - you can split your time equally between your country and your husband's country. Your child deserves to see both parents EQUALLY. And I would say this to all mothers out there: if tou take your child away from their father , it causes tremendous pain for many people: the child, the father, the grandparents, their uncles and aunts on that side. Please think it through properly

mathanxiety Tue 23-Apr-19 05:36:59

Soontobe60
Your child deserves to have a relationship with her father...
Agree.

...In the country of her birth.
Disagree.
There is nothing essential about living in the country of her birth.
......
There is a huge difference between a baby of 7 months and a toddler of 2, Jaimemai.

What happened to you and to your dad is very sad, in fact tragic.

But the OP is talking about maintaining contact by traveling with her DD to see the father for long stretches, and technology can facilitate long distance relationships much better than it used to.

The father has also apparently said the OP should do what is right for her including leaving with the baby; he is ok with agreeing to this.
So the comparison with your family's circumstances is not very clear.

Jaimemai Mon 22-Apr-19 09:52:54

I understand that you would rather be at home. But I really think that alot of mothers can be selfish and think that they are the primary parent of the child, when they are not. Both father and mother are equally important. You have got to put the child first. And the child needs both parents. Someone said that at 7 months she will not miss her dad. That is not true. I was two when I left my Dad to go to another country and I missed him all the time, and my grandparents on that side , terribly. I would like to also add that my father ended up committing suicide because of what my mother did. You cant just think of yourseld. You have to think of your child and that you are taking her away not just from her father but also from her grandparents. Good luck

SnowsInWater Mon 22-Apr-19 07:24:28

If he is agreeable to your leaving now with your child tbh I would do it. Usually I am a firm believer in "a child needs both parents" but I am in Australia and have seen so many unhappy women stuck here with no family support when their relationship breaks down as if a child is born here with an Australian dad there is no way they are leaving without dad's consent until they are 18.

Soontobe60 Mon 22-Apr-19 07:15:36

Whatever you decide OP, it is never going to be perfect. You have lived in another country perfectly well for 7 years, but now you have a child you want to come home. I totally get that. However, you made your choice knowing what it is like to live where you do. Your child deserves to have a relationship with her father. In the country of her birth.
If you choose to separate from her father, try staying where you are for a while to see if it's doable. I would say that as you are the one who wants to leave him, if you feel you have to come back to the UK, then you also have to leave your DD with her father and be the one who goes back for long holidays to see her.
The only honest decision is for both parents to live where their child lives so she has regular access every week to both of them.

missperegrinespeculiar Mon 22-Apr-19 06:59:58

oh OP, I feel for you! I have numerous friends in this situation and it is terrible to be away from your country and your family when your relationship breaks down.

The one thing I can reassure you about is if you decide to leave in-between the two countries (long stretches in both) it can work very well, we do it with our kids (mostly for work reasons, but we also have immediate family in two different continents) spending about half and half of our time in (mainly) two places.

We have done this even through school years (homeschooling for half the year). The kids are not at all upset by it, in fact, they love it, and have a strong identification with both of our main residences (they are also perfectly bilingual and learning another two languages). It is tiring for us though!

However, we have done this with the full support of our kids' school and not all schools would support it, and we are worried about what might happen when the kids are at high school, in that, I don't think we will still be able to do it then.

We also own houses in both countries, so moving is easier and kids have toys, clothes, bikes etc. in both and have the stability of returning to familiar places, and we have also family and friends in both.

Done this way, for the kids it is their normal, not destabilising in any sense.

This said, I don't know that I would take my child away from a loving father, it is one of her fundamental relationships, also, you say he is selfish, and yet he is willing to allow you to go back? it's a huge sacrifice for him! But maybe if your DD would have better opportunities here, and you would be much happier and you can facilitate a close relationship maybe it is worth it overall?

On the other hand, I am gobsmacked at people advising you to just take your DD, even without the father's consent, what a horrible thing to do to a parent! Not to mention illegal!

mathanxiety Mon 22-Apr-19 05:53:13

Don't be tempted to do anything underhand.

Consult a lawyer and do not do anything just on the basis of a conversation with your H.

Everything wrt travel with the baby needs to be in writing.

mathanxiety Mon 22-Apr-19 05:50:11

I am one of those women stuck until youngest turns 18.

Even at this point with 18 just around the corner for my youngest, I have decisions to make. Can I just up and leave my children in their twenties/late teens? We don't all live close together but still...
Can I start my life over yet again in a country that has changed a lot since I left it?
What about the relationship with my children? What about grandchildren? I have none right now but that could change..
Then there is my mum, getting older, back home..

Things can look simple when you are somewhat at a distance from them. When they get a little closer the details become apparent and more significant. Time brings wrinkles.

Otoh...
Your DD is 7 months old and to be brutally blunt, will not miss her father. I suspect your feelings on her missing a father are related to your own feelings of missing some important part of your own life.

Your DD will adapt to a relationship with her father at long distance, with periods of closeness. He would presumably make an effort to get to the UK for short spells too apart from her school holidays (these are a few years off). Technology can allow them to be in contact.

............
You seem very sad and unable to see much good in any situation you envisage.

Not meaning to sound patronising, but could your intense homesickness and unhappiness with your relationship be down to depression or pnd?

How often are you able to get back to the UK for visits?
Do you have family who can visit you where you are?
Friends where you are, or friends in the UK who could visit?

Why did you leave the UK in the first place, and when?

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