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.
Not sure I can live separate lives with DP - any advice?(43 Posts)
Hi, i'm hoping to get some other perspectives on our situation as I feel I may be being blinkered.
I've been with DP for around 18 months now and we are looking to move in together soon. Our relationship is good, we've had our ups and downs but we are really happy at the moment apart from one problem. His Ex wife. She will not let us have the children together.
He sees them at least 3 times a week at their house, so spends plenty of time with them which is great but I can't see our future with this arrangement. My ex has our children two nights a week over at his house, his girlfriend is sometimes there, sometimes not but I put no restrictions on his access at all and we are very flexible as well as amicable.
I don't want to be sat at home two nights a week and every sunday while he's having bbq's with his kids and his ex wife. He seems resigned to the situation and is reluctant to rock the boat with his ex who has threatened to move away if he tries to gain proper access.
I am completely happy to have his children at our house, stay over, make them as comfortable and welcome as possible. I don't want to be their Mother - they have one and I have my own children.
I'm not jealous of her, I do feel that he panders to her too much but I have no concerns that he wants her back, she does want him back unfortunately and I think this is where the problem lies, she likes him being there doing little jobs around the house and bringing groceries etc.
I don't know if I can do this, I feel like his mistress, we talk of marriage and the future but I just can't see me being happy with his 2 separate lives.
This doesn't bode well for you.
From my very personal experience I'd say move on with your life now and save yourself lots of heartache.
It doesn't sound like a good situation. How do you see your relationship progressing? Do you intend to marry this man and can you see yourself putting up with this set up for the next 10 to 15 years while the children grow up?
Things may improve as the children get older but you could have a long wait and, seeing as you are not exactly happy with things now, you would I think be ill advised to enter into a long term commitment with this man.
I think it's time to ask yourself what you would like to be doing in 5 years time and whether this relationship is helping you to achieve that goal or not.
Run and don't look back. You will be called unreasonable, jealous etc - but don't let that stop you.
If he hasn't made any steps to change in the first 18 months you are together - he never will. A joint holiday over Christmas whet he splits his time? Why, why, why would that be a good idea?
Seriously split - he will either get back with her (just for the kids you know) or he will find someone else who will accept this (so much more understanding of his difficult situation....)
It looks like he's still very attached to his wife and this is why he spends longer with her and why he wants to be on holiday with her.
As often happens, you're putting the focus on her behaviour and not his.
According to him, she's doing the same.
Which suits him just fine. The two women blame eachother and he gets off scott free. All the time you're blaming eachother and being enemies, he escapes the heat.
It's not a nice feeling to realise you're being manipulated but it looks that way.
Can't you do better than this?
Sorry but I would just cut your losses. Whether he's a manipulative prick or a spineless idiot - what's the difference? Why would you want to be with either?
You don't have the life you want with a partner who's stodd shoulder to shoulder with you, and that's not going to change. Bin him.
It really doesn't sound llike this relationship is much cop. Bin and move on.
You need to get rid as that sounds like you're going nowhere, sorry.
just wondering if i'm supposed to invite my XDH too??
Hi everyone, sorry I've been awol - had a lot going on!! I'm still no further forward, infact, after this evenings brief conversation before he went off to see the kids, i'm even more confused!!
The past 2 Christmas's have been horrendous so we talked about going away this year. He has just suggested that he pays for them all to go away AI, I said that sounds good but maybe EXW should contribute too, he said there's no way she would and it would be 'for the children' (I hear this soooo many times). I said fine, that sounds like a way of avoiding the inevitable Xmas day argument of him spending all day there and me spending it alone (I alternate Christmas day with EXH). Anyway...
He then suggested we go to the same place and he gets to spend a few days with them whilst there. I asked if he was joking and he said no. I am a little gobsmacked and it hasn't really sunk in yet so not sure of exactly how I feel.
I said that if he went through court we could take the children on a holiday together as part of the conditions - not 'share a holiday'. Also (my initial feeling) I can't stand the thought of being alone on holiday while he's off spending family time with hie ex and children.
I keep saying that when she finds someone else he'll be dropped like a hot cake and won't be welcome round there all of the time and certainly not on their holidays so why not sort things out now to avoid future problems.
So.. I am sat at home alone, again (I was last night too) going over everything and pretty much going mad! (not quite rocking in the corner sucking my thumb...yet!)
I would end things. I can't see this ever getting any better. Leaving him might be the one thing you could do that would make him see sense, but I doubt it TBH.
Even if he comes round to your way of thinking, there are a million red flags here to worry about in your own relationship. For example, I predict the clash of styles of parenting with your own DC and his will cause many, many arguments. I can see you wishing he'd kept to seeing his DC at their own house.
And as for feeling that you should be sat at home waiting for him while he sees his DC.
You never know the full story. In my case, there is no way I'd let my husband see his children anywhere without my presence or another trusting person, he's been violent and unpredictable and I would currently never never let them be with him, in fact at the moment I don't want him anywhere near any of us! so sometimes there might be a reason not to let kids see their father in his own home.
Now reading from OP's first post to now, there is more than one problem isn't there? Chin up for OP and especially for the children.
He is doing a number on both of you. I'm willing to bet that he is telling HER that you are controlling and mentally unstable - hence the ideas about strange phone calls and food stealing. He is spinning a line to the lot of you. His kids sound like they have got the measure of him.
What kind of prick won't let his partner do as she pleases on evenings when he is not there? Next time he goes dump his stuff outside and change the locks.
NO if YOU leave the relationship it is because you DP has allowed her behavior.
Morning, thanks for all of the replies. I have met all of them and heard things from her supposed friends (we have the same local - which I rarely go to) I've heard the calls she makes to him so I know how she speaks to him.
He is too nice to her, believing that if he does whatever she demands she will mellow, but all it does is send mixed messages to her - I keep saying that any gestures will be seen by her as affection.
It does feel like if I leave the relationship I've allowed her behaviour to ruin things, but I also know that it is his fault for allowing it
Run for the hills. How ex is she if she wants him to run errands and spend his free time with her. Its not healthy for the children to see their separated parents behave as if they are still married. They need to see both parents in their own separate environmentd & develop separate relationships with each of them. Otherwise they may mistakenly think that there is a possibility of getting back together.
Leaving aside any possibly fishiness in the setup, what on earth is "threatening" about going out with your mates on a night when your boyfriend is seeing his kids anyway? Why the fuck shouldn't you? What is he afraid will happen when you're out, and should those fears be pandered to?
There are so many more issues here than the attitude of the ex(?) wife.
Yet another person who has read and thinks 'run!'
There is no DP, just a man still tied to a relationship and trying to convince you that you're more than just the OW. Not from where I'm sitting, sorry.
I'm another who finds the whole story fishy - sorry. I'd say run run run. Taking everything he says as true, then why on earth would you want to be involved with someone like that? But I'm actually wondering if they are split up or if you are actually the other woman?
What parts of his story can you verify independently? Have you met his wife? Children? Friends? Co-workers?
It all sounds a bit scary & sinister to me, sorry & I'm usually one to take things at face value & can be naive at times. Good luck. Hope things work out for you.
What does he expect you to do while he is there? Sit at home waiting? You don't live together. Why does he get a say in what you do with the time that you are not together? Run!
He seems resigned to the situation and is reluctant to rock the boat with his ex who has threatened to move away if he tries to gain proper access.
Why would she want to move away? It could be because he's a nasty piece of work and she's scared of him, or it could also be because she's a controlling cow and not really worthy of the children if she wants to separate them from their father.
Whichever it is, proper access is exactly what's needed. If she decides to move away that's her choice and her children will know that's what she did when they grow up and she will have to live with that fact.
I've said that if it continues then I will find other activities to do whilst he is there, but then that separates us even more. He thinks that because he is seeing his children then it's okay, and it would upset him if I was out doing something else whilst he was there.
This is really weird and controlling of him. So, how much fun are you allowed to have whilst he's out? Or is it that he's frightened you'll see someone else? And he's often very late to keep you on your toes too?
it feels like I am blackmailing him by threatening to go off and have fun if he's going round there, and then it looks like I don't want him spending time with the children, which isn't true at all
Why do you feel like you would be blackmailing him by doing something as normal as living your life and occupying yourself when he's not there. Could he be making you feel guilty about this? Do you go out with your children or friends without him?
I'm another one sceptical about how controlling and unreasonable his ex?wife really is. For instance, could there be a reason for supervised access, or could this be his choice? Even if she has threatened him with loss of access, he could have stood up to her and got reasonable access agreed through legal means if necessary.
That said, I know some single parents have principles about what stage partners are introduced to children, I wouldn't like to judge when it would reasonable. But this should be clear between them both and you. Why isn't he telling her that his relationship with you is serious and that you should meet the children? why isn't he fighting for a normal family life with you?
You know why it feels like he is treating you as if you are his mistress? because that's exactly how he's treating you while he plays happy families at home.
TBH though, for you, it doesn't matter whether he's being unreasonable, she is or they both are. This is life with him/them, do you really want to still be with him? Certainly don't commit to this relationship further (moving in, kids etc) without him improving the arrangement to one you are all comfortable with.
Are there other red flags in this relationship?
Have you had any direct contact with her to confirm that she is a malevolent, unreasonable, stalky alcoholic? Or is this all stuff he has told you? In general, men whose XPs are 'mad' are men to avoid. And the fact that he wants you to sit at home and fret when he's round at hers is another major red flag. Honestly, bin him and move on. FFS don't get pregnant by him, or it will be your turn to be described as a mad vengeful drunk to his next girlfriend.
there are sometimes when I really want to shake some posters... how can you contemplate living like this ? He is SHOWING you where his priorities are, for how long does this have o go on before you have had enough? He sounds like a weak ineffectual pathetic man child who lacks a backbone. Its not about what his ex WANTS its about the childrens RIGHT to have a relationship with their father. He should take her to court & stop the bloody pathetic pandering. But he wont, because he lacks any real commitment to you.
FGS do NOT move with this creep. dump the twat already
Join the discussion
Please login first.