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Where to draw the line?! Please advise - I have no idea!

(4 Posts)
freida20 Sat 12-Dec-15 16:49:16

My husband left me a few weeks ago and tbh its been quite rubbish for the last couple of years so it was a relief. I'd considered separation myself but never had the guts and was worried about the children and the consequences and so on and thought we should keep going or things would get better or something.
The first week was awful, despite everything it was a shock. Also it was very stressful - trying to juggle my commute and work and the children's childcare but I did it and felt like, although it was tricky, I could manage on my own. I had friends/family in place etc in case I had to stay late for a parents evening or whatever.

Anyway I don't know if someone has said something to my ex about dropping me in it or of he feels guilty or if he thinks that if he makes me see I need him he will come back but he is being super helpful! While I appreciate it I'm finding it a bit much at times. I want to be nice and i want to make it easier for our children but i also want to draw a line - and i have no idea where that line should be!? What is normal behaviour and expectations in these situations!?

So for example -

He has started coming over every morning to look after kids and take them to the breakfast club which means I can leave half an hour earlier so I can get to work on time - he arrives, lets himself in and I leave. He also picks them up on the nights he finishes before me and brings them over and waits until i get home, which is most nights.

Today he bought christmas presents from them to me - this is great but he went up to my bedroom so they could wrap them. Is it ridiculous that I found this rather intrusive?
He lets himself in rather than ringing the bell even when i'm here.
he comes when i'm at work - i know because the post has been picked up or washing put in dryer.
He fixed the washing machine for me the other day as he said it had an error message (it frequently does!) This is obviously really appreciated but at the same time I want to cut my ties and my dependence on him - does that sound ungrateful? I am trying so hard to be reasonable and for everything to be amicable - and so far it is (although we haven't started talking about division of finances like the house for example!)

For our sons birthday I invited him for tea so he could see son and spend time with him and he came and spent time with us. But i found it difficult him sitting on the sofa and acting like he still lives here.

The thing is its great for our children that they get to come to their own home when they come home from school rather than go where he is staying and then have to come home later but I'm starting to consider this as being my home and not his - how can i set up some ground-rules without damaging this great opportunity for my children to have a bit of normality and see their Dad?

Ex is staying at Grandmas so they enjoy spending time there and have stayed over a few times already but at the same time there is nothing quite like coming home and relaxing with own toys or watching tv in own space. Maybe I am being too soft!

In a way I am probably being selfish because I want the best of both worlds. He is looking after them when i go back to school after christmas so i suggested he look after them here for the day while i'm not here as i didn't want them to go and spend the whole week with him as they are still off on holidays. I said it was because they would prefer to be in their own home and they are staying with him for the weekend so it made sense for them but it was also for me as i didn't want them to be away all week and the weekend. I find it really difficult not seeing them.

How can i get the right balance and set up some ground rules without upsetting the children?

Sorry for the long post! TIA for any advice.

Justdisappointed Sat 12-Dec-15 23:37:00

Oh my goodness I think you are me! Your entire story is the same as my experience. My x is also letting himself in, caring for dd in our home and the other weekend when I stayed at a friends house he slept in my (our old) bed which disgusted me. A further complication is that x is paying half the mortgage and bills still. I don't think it's unreasonable that you find it difficult when he's there. I vacillate between thinking I'll change the locks but then I worry about the after school care as you do. I also think if I changed the locks he would manage to get copies of the keys made. What do you want to happen? For him to have a set schedule? Is he reliable do you think?

freida20 Sun 13-Dec-15 10:59:35

Pretty sure he is reliable but we haven't got to any discussions (finances/ mortgage etc) yet so I have no idea if he will get stroppy and not be so helpful. I want to have things 'decided' a bit. I've proved to myself I can cope without him so although its helpful to me he can't hold anything over me. BUT like you I want him to see his children - they miss him - even though they see him everyday!
I am also in the situation where he is still paying into the joint account exactly as before to pay mortgage and bills, and he has a credit card on my account that he uses for food and petrol - I definitely want that to stop - even if that means he pays less into the joint account - because at least I know where I will stand each month!
Be careful about changing the locks - I think if he owns half the house you can only really justifiably do that if he is an abusive partner.
Really sorry to hear he slept in your bed - that is not on!
How long ago did you separate? I am only about 3 weeks in so it is all new to me! Keep in touch - and good luck to you smile

Justdisappointed Sun 13-Dec-15 11:58:38

Hi Freida six weeks ago for me. I have seen a lawyer so know what I can expect but at the moment I admit it's easier to have half the bills paid and not to have to deal with all the emotional fallout of DD (there has been some fallout but the regular contact is helping with that). Although it's tempting to go for a clean break and start our new lives we are very early on and how we handle this is key for our children's emotional well being

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