Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.
Am I being a mug - supporting him when he won't support me?(268 Posts)
Hi, it's my first time here. Haven't got anyone to discuss this with and would appreciate some perspectives. It's complicated, but will try not to make it too long though you're welcome to ask anything you feel I've missed.
DP and I have been together for 4 years. I had a 2.5 year old when we met, we now have a 14 month old together. We were planning to move in together when I was pregnant as that's when our contracts on respective properties ran out. However, some extra debts from his marriage came to light and we couldn't afford to do so. When his contract ran out he moved into a room in a friends house which he doesn't pay for. He comes to visit for tea on work nights then sleeps at his friends, on nights off (generally 3 per week) he eats and sleeps here. He doesn't pay anything towards rent, food or bills here though he does pay maintenance towards our baby - though that's partly to reduce the CSA payment for his children from his marriage I suspect. All his money (around 40k salary) is going into paying off his debts.
He says that if he's being honest it'll be at least another 1.5/2 years before he can afford to move in with us. He would then like us to have another baby. I said that I wouldn't like a baby if I couldn't stay home with them for at least the first three years (personal preference) and he said that in that case we wouldn't be able to have another one as 'his wages wouldn't be enough to support us.' At the moment I do and pay for everything and think I'm being a mug for effectively supporting him to clear his debts when he isn't willing to support me in the future. Having another child isn't essential for me but it irritates me that I have far less money than 40k p/a yet it's ok for me to support him but he wouldn't do it for me.
Also, it's gone from having a baby together in a loving committed relationship where we were moving in together to him not living with us until our child is potentially almost 3.5 years old. Not to mention the fact this isn't good for either child, it means I do absolutely everything for them. I work from home and am also studying for a degree. Next year is my final year when I'll be doing my dissertation which is obviously a huge piece of work. Another student that's doing it this year said she's been in the library 4 days per week from 10am-11pm since September and still not finished. Youngest DD is difficult at night - she will only sleep if latched on so doing my university work is proving impossible. When I told DP how much work is involved next year he said he'd 'tell his mum to get DVD player fired up to entertain DD.' I just felt like screaming at him that it isn't his mums responsibility to have our DD (never mind the fact she never has, never offered and lives 1.5 hours away) that if he lived with us then he could do what normal partners do and help with the kids at night so I can work then. He's just done some work based exams which he got to study for every night interruption free as I have the kids yet I feel I could well fail the degree which I've invested my savings in and that is essential for my future career and for me to be able to provide for the kids. Not only that but if we reach the day where he moves in then things won't get easier for me as he won't know what to do with the kids/they'll want me.
I'm aware I'm ranting now so I'll stop there! Am I wrong to be feeling utterly pissed off at the situation?
There isn't a no contact order. His wife said he couldn't see the kids, he didn't go to court to try to do so. Jux - I haven't said I don't know the extent of his debts or why he doesn't see his kids. I do know both, thank you. I don't understand why he doesn't go to court to sort out contact, or why he doesn't seek debt advice to make it more manageable - there is a difference. Lapsed - my dissertation includes 12000 words about the 'process' of doing my dissertation, which is essentially writing a book. Only the first 4 chapters must be included but in order to write the dissertation accurately/increase the chances of getting a First it would beneficial to write the entire book. Mimishimi - doubt it was his wife if that's what you're trying to infer. We did not have an affair, it was his wife that had an affair. GardenPath - His wife doesn't live in the marital home anymore, it has since been sold. She gets at least £700 per month in maintenance for his children and subsequent children she's had alone, she doesn't work and claims benefits as far as I know. Also, she wasn't dumped by him. She had an affair. I'm not defending him, it just annoys me when people assume we must have had an affair and left this poor woman with the children. She left him, took the kids, got pregnant by someone else, left them for someone else, convinced DP to help her borrow money to rent a house and has now left him to pay the debts. Yes I know where he's living.
I know you all disagree with what I'm doing, and obviously I wouldn't be posting if I was happy with it, but if we hadn't had our daughter and him not living with us wasn't affecting my degree I wouldn't be too fussed. I think there are a lot of relationships where the man helps/supports the woman if she has debts/baggage but if a woman helps a man to do the same then he is labelled a cocklodger.
Why hasn't he got contact sorted through the court?
He is intimidated by his ex. She makes him ill with stress, puts him down, badmouths him to the kids, constantly text and called him berating him. He has admitted he feels better since not having her in his life anymore, and he feels that the kids are better off out of the conflict. I personally would (and have - I am separated too) face my ex whatever they're like in order to have a relationship with my children but he is not a strong person at all. Not an excuse, I know. But you asked his reason.
I'm sorry Amy I just don't buy it. You came here to ask "am I being a mug?". Everyone says "yes". You say "but....". Everyone says "That's even worse, you're def a mug." You say "He's not that bad really...".
What did you expect from the thread? We can't MAKE him change.
We can't make the debts go away.
We can't predict the future
even if those that have been there, done that, can have a bloody good guess
You are not supporting him through a tough time or a rough patch. You are doing EVERYTHING alone whilst he dips in & out of family life.
You say, if it wasn't for your degree, you'd be happy. Well, you DO have your degree to worry about and HE ISN'T HELPING OR SUPPORTING YOU!!!
I'm sorry to admit but I'm hiding the thread now because, until you come out of denial and realise he could and should do more, its not worth my time.
I really hope, for your dc & your own sakes, he either changes massively to help you more or you wake up & smell the coffee soon...
All the best.
Hang on -
Yes, men and women do support their partners to deal with their debt and baggage. That happens.
But your partner has already told you that he won't be supporting you back. He doesn't see this as a favor you are doing him, he doesn't appreciate what you do. After you spend years helping him to pay his debts, paying for everything and raising your children, HE ISN'T GOING TO LET YOU DO THE SAME. He won't work and let you be a SAHP, he won't support you financially through pregnancy. You'll just support him forever, without him ever stepping up to try and make your life easier, as you have his.
And everyone here is desperately trying to show you that he does this repeatedly, that he's taking you for a complete mug, and that you'll be broken when this ends because that's what men like him do.
Amy I realise that you are answering posts rather than defending him.
However it does seem to be all about him.
I am asking again: what would you honestly want your relationship to be like, forgetting all other factors (ex wife, debt, etc)?
OP you deserve better. We can all see that and I'm sure deep down you know it too.
'I know you all disagree with what I'm doing, and obviously I wouldn't be posting if I was happy with it, but if we hadn't had our daughter and him not living with us wasn't affecting my degree I wouldn't be too fussed. I think there are a lot of relationships where the man helps/supports the woman if she has debts/baggage but if a woman helps a man to do the same then he is labelled a cocklodger.'
Him not living with you is affecting your degree how, because you said he does nothing? How on Earth is his living with you going to help?
You're determined to hang on to this utter loser and have him move in. You'll have another kid with him and continue cocking up your life because ultimately, this is working for you, no matter how unhappy you and your kids are. That's your life and your poor kids'. I feel sorry for them.
Best of luck.
Amy, Amy, Amy.
You don't seem to be listening to anyone. Why don't you listen to yourself.
"He doesn't pay anything towards rent, food or bills here though he does pay maintenance towards our baby - though that's partly to reduce the CSA payment for his children from his marriage I suspect."
You honestly think this is how people in relationships behave to each other? Really, honestly you think that?
"I said that I wouldn't like a baby if I couldn't stay home with them for at least the first three years (personal preference) and he said that in that case we wouldn't be able to have another one as 'his wages wouldn't be enough to support us."
I have to suggest counselling. Find out why your expectations of your "partner" are so low they are almost non-existant.
Amy, I was all set to get a First, like you though I was an undergrad. My PhD was all set up, supervisors waiting in the wings. Then I lost it, couldn't get the time to study, the people around me wouldn't let me concentrate or think or give me time to write. I got a mediocre 2:1. That changed everything, all my prospects changed from glowing to dim. I graduated in '97 and the wonderful possibilities in my life then are ashes now, tossed away in the wind.
Please don't let this happen to you.
jux I got a 2:1 and never thought it was mediocre!
Sorry, pinkyredrose, I didn't mean it like that! My Tutor had said there were good 2:1s (67+%), average 2:1s (65/66%) and mediocre 2:1s. If you wanted to do postgrad then you needed a 1st or a good 2:1.
I'm starting a movement. It's going to be called "Stop Doin' It With Worthless Assholes".
I may need time to come up with something more succinct. I'll let you know how it goes over this side of the pond.
Amy his story just doesn't ring true.
You're obviously happy to support him because nothing anyone is saying here is convinving you that this guy is just a cocklodger, so why can he not move in with you?
He isn't paying you rent. or his mate rent, so why doesn't he just move in full time and continue not to pay rent, but at least contribute housework and his fair share of childcare to at least lessen your burden and help you study?
You are supporting him financially at the moment anyway, but yet he is choosing not to move in and be a part of family life, though financially it really wouldn't make that much difference to him.
At least ask yourself why he is choosing not to move in?
At the moment he's got his cake an eating it. He gets rent free accommodation, a regular shag and gets to play daddy when he feels like it, without any real permanent commitment to you or the kids. No wonder he doesn't want to change that and is offering up excuses so the status quo doesn't change.
I think the OP has flounced.
Hopefully we've all given her food for thought though.
Amy, if you are out there, please keep posting. You have had some tough comments on this thread, but the support on MN can be amazing.
No one is trying to make you feel like a mug/stupid/an idiot. People are just angry at this waste of space of a person and his failure to be a decent partner, father and human being.
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.