Would you like to be a member of our research panel? Join here - there's (nearly) always a great incentive offered for your views.
How do I involve my ex in pregnancy?(14 Posts)
Hi this is my first post on mumsnet but I really need some advice on dealing with an ex partner during pregnancy.
A little background info..I am currently 10 weeks pregnant but had already split up with the father a few weeks before finding out. We were only together about 6 months but I soon realised he wasn't the man I wanted to spend the rest of my life with. Nothing drastically wrong it just wasn't a relationship I wanted to continue and his recent behaviour has only reinforced this belief.
At first my ex wanted us to get back together and live happily ever after as if the break up never happened. This is something I really don't want. My Mum and Dad got married when she fell pregnant and had a very acrimonious divorce several years later. I don't want to make the same mistake. Perhaps I'm being selfish but I'd rather we maintained a stable friendship than try to restart an already failed relationship. I know being on my own won't be easy but I have a really good support network and have thought long and hard about my decision.
A lot has gone on and there have been a lot of arguments but my ex seems to have started to accept the situation (although I think in the back of his mind he thinks he will change my mind). However the main problem is how do I involve him in the pregnancy but still maintain some distance?
I am quite happy for him to come to the scans and so on but apart from that there is nothing much going on. It's not like we can just sit round and watch my belly grow! I don't want to just spend time with him hanging out or speak to him everyday but if I don't he starts accusing me of shutting him out. He also constantly accuses me of being in a relationship with another ex boyfriend who remains a close friend. There is no truth in this accusation but I am not happy with him trying to dictate who I can and can't have as friends. He brings this into every conversation we have and it always ends in a row which is really wearing me down.
I know this can't be easy for him but I can't cope with another 7 months of his tantrums and paranoia just because I'm not available to him 24 hours a day. He takes it as a personal insult that I am sometimes busy and thinks its fine to just drop round my flat whenever he wants. I've tried to tell him to call ahead but he won't listen and just tells me to "chill out woman"...aaggggghhhh this drives me crazy!
I?ve tried to set some rules and boundaries but he just doesn?t listen and carries on regardless. I?m dreading telling him I don't want him as my birthing partner or to be present during the birth. I haven't told him this yet but I know he is keen to attend the antenatal classes so I can see this causing yet another row. I just don't feel comfortable with him being there. Am I being totally unreasonable?
I'm starting to dread his calls and texts as it always seems to end in a row.
Sorry didn't mean to go on so long! Any advice most welcome
There is nothing unreasonable about you not wanting him there at the birth. You should only have someone you feel 100% comfortable with.
As for involving him in the pregnancy, it is a tough one but I'll give it a shot. Allow him to any appointments where you feel comfortable with him being there. Sometimes you have to talk to your midwife alone and he should respect that. Give him any info you want him to know.
If it would be awkward to have him over a lot to do Dad things like talk to your bump etc then just say no. It's not his baby until it arrives. Until then it is your body and you have full control over it.
Make it clear that you are not shutting him out but that there is very little going on but should anything change such as a problem arising with the pregnancy, you would like to keep contact with him to maybe 1 call or visit a week. You do after all still need to carry out your normal life such as work, friends etc.
Otherwise, apart from being parents, there is not now nor will there be any other relationship between you.
All this does rely on him being reasonable and not making life hard for you. You don't need the stress.
Good luck and congrats on pregnancy.
I think you are right about setting rules. Have you thought about asking an independant 3rd party to sit with you both and agree some WRITTEN boundaries? You may find this will help. He also needs to know that you DO want to maintain a stable friendship - for the sake of the child.
Perhaps include amongst the ground rules that info about the baby is ok (eg the scans) but invasion of your privacy isn't (eg midwife appts; calling round unannounced etc..) A phone call to him following midwife appt to update on health of baby may also help.
Antenatal classes and the birth are about you, so he needs to understand you don't feel comfortable with him being present, equally I can undestand he would want to be one of the first to meet his son/daughter so perhaps you can agree no visitors until he has met the DC?
Remember that if he becomes really unreasonable you can shut him out of your life. The fact that you are pregnant by him doesn't give him any rights over you - and he does sound like a bit of a tosser, someone who ignores your wishes because he thinks his are more important: no wonder you don't want him as a partner. I am not advocating shutting him out of the child'slife, but his contact with his DC can be negotiated and arranged after the birth and, if need be, it can be done through a third party so you need not deal with him at all.
You definitely don't have to have him at the birth if you don't want him there. Giving birth is hard and stressful - the last thing you want is a manipulative attention-seeking knobber in the room with you.
You also have to tell him that you have every right to start relationships with other men. You are NOT his partner and it is none of his business who you are dating.
Put your foot down! This is your life, and you have every right to privacy and to make your own decisions regarding how much input you want him to have at this stage. He has a right to know you are both doing well, and to contact with his child when it is born, but it sounds like many of his wants and needs are about you and not the child.
I would agree that a phone call to him after your midwife appointments is fair, and an opportunity to attend scans with you, but otherwise I see no reason why you would have to actually spend any time with this man unless you want to.
Don't allow him to invade your privacy or dictate what you are allowed to do, with whom and when. You are not in a relationship and he has no right to tay and assert control over you! His concern is the welfare of the child, make sure you set your boundaries now, clearly and firmly. I understand you don't want to hurt his feelings but I would foresee a lot of trouble in the future if you are not firm with him now. That way you both know where you stand, can concentrate on your individual lives and be civil for the sake of the child.....you don't want to detest him for stifling you and to end up hating him by the time you give birth.
I am in a similar position at the moment, having found myself 8wk pg to a man I have been in a relationship with for only a couple of months. When I found out I was pg we were not speaking after one of many many fights and I would probably have never seen him again otherwise. I wish I was as sure of what I wanted as you.....we are trying to work out a serious relationship but I am not sure that is what I want with him. Sometimes I adore the man and others I could quite happily chuck him under a bus! I think that is partly his fault for acting like a ** (add your own expletive!) at times, however other times he can be lovely..... and I am positive some crazy pregnacy hormones are involved here too, I go from 0 to horrid in 0.3 seconds at the moment! I would really like to keep in touch and follow how you are getting on, and I have nothing but admiration for your determination and bravery going it alone!
best wishes and good luck with the lion taming!
Thanks everyone for your responses. Things have been a bit overwhelming over the last couple of weeks but I think I'm getting there now. I don't think I have ever felt this tired or emotional!
I have seen my ex a couple of times with varying degrees of success. But I think I am managing to establish some boundaries now and he seems to have accepted the fact that we won't be resuming any romantic relationship.
Ladyjadey hope things are going well for you and you're managing to work your relationship out. Sounds like you're pretty confused and all these pregnancy hormones probably don't help!
relationship now in the bin! best place for it. Turned out to be a total sh*t. Want nothing to do with him and want him out of our lives. I was definately confused as to whether things were bad or it was just hormones, turns out they were WAY bad! have made firm decision to go it alone, feeling a bit scared but will be ok.
Sorry to hear things didn't work for you and I hope you're not feeling too stressed out. It is pretty scary being on your own but I think being pregnant is pretty scary even if you are in a relationship. Even though I made the choice not to get back with my ex I do sometimes wonder what the hell I was thinking. How can I bring up a baby in a small one bedroom flat in the middle of a city alone?!
But all I have to do is speak to him and I know it's the right thing to do!
Have you got some good friends to support you? Are your family close by? My brother lives near me and I know he'd always try and help me out. I've also asked a close friend to be my birthing partner so I won't be going to antenatal classes alone.
We can do this
Help Please . I'm 13 weeks pregs . Dumped my ex only to find out 3 days later that I'm pregnant. I didn't want get back to him as I've been on failed marriage before and didn't feel he was the right guy for me after dating 3 months. Anyways told him that I'm pregnant he came to talk did think of the idea of getting back but I changed my mind as the spark was gone. The first thing he said to me was I'm I going to get rid as we are not together! That still hurts till today as feel like my child has been rejected before her/ his life has even started. I decided to keep the baby and he went along with it saying he was there if need him from 3 weeks when I found out to 7 weeks he never texted me once to see how I was - I had to text him to give him any updates . Anyways had spotting at 7 weeks which I was quite concerned as its my first pregnancy and all I got from him was hope both of you are ok then blank again . I decided that I'm not going to invite him to any scans or nothing and just do it without him really . My question is - when I do have the baby - I don't want to put his name on the birth certificate - I feel like living it blank but will tell the child about him and make the child decide if they want to know him but what I was going to do is put his surname as the child's second name . So baby name - his name and my surname. This will make life easy for me that he hasn't got parental powers as I know sometimes that can go quite nasty ! Do you think I'm being reasonable ?
Yes Cheshire i think YABU.
You can't choose not to acknowledge the father on the BC just because you'd prefer him not to be involved. He is the father whether he's on the BC or not. Your dc deserves to have a birth certificate with both his/her parents on it whether or not he's your ideal partner.
My only concern is putting his name down gives him full parental responsibility so if i want to travel with the child / school/ etc he need to authorise as well and can't be dealing with that ...
With regards to involving your ex, I is difficult involving even a DH in these things, because its happening to you. That said I had a little cry over all the pregnant single women out there who didn't have a man to help with the man type things...we recently bought baby stuff and its heavy and then has to be put together. Could you ask him to do those things to get involved, Or go to diy shop to get everything to baby proof your home?
Join the discussion
Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.Register now
Already registered with Mumsnet? Log in to leave your comment or alternatively, sign in with Facebook or Google.
Please login first.