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Telling the children about new partner

(19 Posts)
SearchingMySoul Sun 04-Mar-18 18:49:52

Ok deep breath - I am going to try again. Posted on here a little while ago to try to get some advice on introducing my children to my new partner but got immediately blasted from all angles (all well intentioned I am sure, but still) so I put the iPad down and walked away. A couple of months on I am still kind of at a loss with regards how to approach the idea of telling the kids that there is a new person in my life. Regardless of the timing question, I’m looking for some guidance about how to tell them. I have two DS aged 6 and 9. My logistical situation is tricky as I live in NY, exh lives in Europe and DP does too although he works for an airline so travels here frequently. When he visits, he stays at hotels which is expensive in NY and not practical in the long term. Because the boys’ father left the country, I have zero alone time unless I pay my sitter to stay with them which is also expensive and not fair on the boys. I really want to find a way to introduce them and explain what is happening. My instincts are to just sit them down and be honest with them about how I feel about this person and to explain that he is not going to replace anyone in their lives but that we love each other and I want him to be a part of our lives. The boys are aware that their dad and I are not going to get back together even though I’m aware that in their minds they may still harbour a hope. I have been separated for almost 2 yrs and my exh left the country 4 months ago. If anyone is willing to share their story with regards to introducing a new partner or has any advice from experience I would really appreciate it. Thank you

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Adviceplease360 Sun 04-Mar-18 18:57:25

How long have you been together? How long has it been since their father moved out? You say he left the country four months ago and you have been separated two years but before he left where was he living?
It also sounds as if this relationship is very new, I would tread carefully, your boys only have you and they should be your priority.
I recently read on mn the biggest threat to children are mums new partner so please be careful for the sake of your boys.

SearchingMySoul Sun 04-Mar-18 19:20:55

We met in August last year. Their dad moved out in May of 2016 and up until October of last year he was living 10 minutes from us in NY. He saw them every other weekend and one night a week. Until he decided to leave, gave them a months notice and now sees them on skype maybe every few weeks. I just took them out to visit him for a week. We do not have a good relationship and he contributes nothing. But in front of the boys I am always civil and I do everything to ensure they have a relationship with their father even to my own mental, physical and financial detriment. The boys are my priority and always will be.

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Adviceplease360 Sun 04-Mar-18 19:43:36

If your boys are your priority, you will not introduce a man you have known for less than a year.
Him renting is not your problem
Given their father is crap and absent they need a committed parent even more and that's going to have to be you, unfair as that is.
I would definitely not introduce this man, not for at least a year and until he lives local to you, sees you regularly first etc.
You have been together 7 months...slow down

SearchingMySoul Sun 04-Mar-18 19:54:24

Thank you for your comments. I appreciate it the advice.

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Sharon1998 Mon 05-Mar-18 00:07:43

If you feel it's going to be a long term relationship, then absolutely tell your children. No point in keeping them in the dark they are at ages where they will have questions but will understand most of it.
You'll always be present when the man is around the kids anyway so I don't see any issues with it. Be honest with them and take their feelings into consideration and listen to them. Best of luck.

SearchingMySoul Mon 05-Mar-18 00:50:42

Thank you, Sharon 💐 that’s exactly how I feel about it and that is, to be honest, how I approach most things with them. But, like with everything, I worry about doing it wrong and messing things up. The boys are handling everything pretty well considering but it is hard having to roll with the punches constantly especially when my exh has tried his hardest to make them believe this whole situation is my choice. Much as I try not to, I second guess myself at every step.

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RemainOptimistic Mon 05-Mar-18 00:55:41

The cost of a hotel is not a reason. Sorry to be harsh but is that the value of your boys? A few hundred dollars? I bet the pressure is coming from this boyfriend of yours, he's thinking about himself and not the impact it will have on anyone else. Your boys need you to protect them and prioritise them, no one else can.

What pp said. Slow down.

SleepingStandingUp Mon 05-Mar-18 01:13:37

I'd introduce him as mummys friend first and spend time together as a 4 before he starts sleeping over. They may well ask if he's your boyfriend or after a few meet ups you can tell them and then introduce the idea of him sleeping over because he's travelled so far.

Realistically though before you do this, do you think you can make a long distance relationship work? If not then I wouldn't trek them. What does it working look like to you? Him moving in full time and settling in NY or you moving to him in Europe? Is he in the same country as Ex? Europe is actually pretty big

SearchingMySoul Mon 05-Mar-18 01:19:20

Wow. Thanks. I always prefer to take my advice with a side of conjecture.

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SearchingMySoul Mon 05-Mar-18 01:27:02

SleepingStanding - thank you, that is sensible advice. The future is very much in my thoughts too and I haven’t fully figured it out yet but we have been discussing different options. He’s currently in the same country as my ex although my ex is not keeping me posted on his movements so may not be for long. I do think long distance will work for now. Our jobs kind of require it to be that way, and I think we are both feeling it would work but it is definitely the biggest dilemma.

My previous post was not at all intended for you, by the way.

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AnnieAnoniMouse Mon 05-Mar-18 02:01:09

You’re allowed friends, you’re allowed friends who have sleep overs & you’re allowed a boyfriend. In your situation, next time he’s in NY I’d arrange a fun day out & invite your friend. Act like friends, not bf/gf. See how they all get on. If they get on ok then invite him for dinner another night then when he’s away talk about him a bit, Skype when the kids are around, get them used to him being a part of your life. I’d do this for a while before inviting him to stay. Pay the baby sitter over night and stay until early morning at the hotel then go home to be there when they wake up. Carve out time where you can. Just see how it goes.

As for your ex, I’d stop forcing contact and I wouldn’t take the kids to visit, you’re only delaying the inevitable.

SearchingMySoul Mon 05-Mar-18 03:43:00

Thanks Annie, I really appreciate the ideas and advice 🌼

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Adviceplease360 Mon 05-Mar-18 09:39:44

Annie she has known the guy since August last year-8 months and you are encouraging her to introduce him to her children!
What a joke!
That is rubbish advice, in those 8 months he's been travelling too, so hardly seeing him consistently. Op, sorry but people like Annie want others to validate their decisions that's why they encourage you to jump man to man introducing him to your kids without any regard.
Your kids are worth more than that.

SearchingMySoul Mon 05-Mar-18 12:32:52

Advice - like i tried to explain in my OP but maybe didn't do such a great job, I am not looking for advice on when to tell my children or for opinions on my relationship or the character and motivation of the other person involved. I was asking for advice on how to tell my children about a new partner and hoping for some real life stories and experiences as it is something I have no experience of. I thanked you for your response. But now I would ask that you don't disparage myself and others for their responses. You have a paragraph's worth of information about my situation which is not enough for you to be making such assumptions, and I am going to take a guess that you don't personally know the other posters so I would also ask that you keep your personal and more offensive comments to yourself. This is supposed to be a support community and you are approaching the question with an aggressiveness that can only make me think that maybe you yourself are seeking validation for some situation or other. I appreciate everyone's responses but let's be kind please.

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SleepingStandingUp Mon 05-Mar-18 14:02:31

Adviceplease360 people meet and get married in less time! Op understand she needs to take things slowly, she's not saying she met a guy last week and when can the kids call him Daddy!

SearchingMySoul Mon 05-Mar-18 15:17:47

While we are talking support and validation, sleepingstanding and annie, I just met with my therapist (who does know the ins and outs of my situation) and he gave me very similar advice to yours. Kudos! 💐☺💐

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Adviceplease360 Mon 05-Mar-18 15:18:27

The boys are my priority and always will be.

Of course they are. I agree, I shouldn't post though, I can't nod along to your selfish decisions.

SleepingStandingUp Mon 05-Mar-18 16:00:27

Advice if she didn't care about the kids he'd have been staying over long before now

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