Advanced search

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.


(74 Posts)
hippoesque Tue 17-Dec-13 11:31:53

When I met my partner I was young and had no definite idea's about marriage, children etc.

I fell pregnant with unplanned DC whilst at uni and dropped out and we had a second planned DC a few years later.

So in the last 8 years we have had 2 children, bought 2 houses, survived extreme extended family bereavements and built a fairly nice little life together.

The problem is marriage. I have been ready for the last three years, he, I assume, is not. I've tried talking to him to find out if he wants to do it traditionally (proposal) or if we can just go ahead and do it seeing as we've done everything else. I'm getting nowhere!! I couldn't even tell you if it's a priority for him. He always fobs me off with vague allusions that he'll get round to it.
I can't help but think that if he doesn't want to do it now then he'll probably never want to.
Both of our children have his name and he has all the benefits of 'married life' so why rock the boat I guess?
Would I be selfish to wait until the NY and just start again on my own? He is fully aware that I'm at breaking point with this so it's not like I'm springing it on him. I just can't live with him for the rest of my life when he doesn't care that I'm so upset to be continually put off.
I didn't realise that it would be a deal breaker for me but equally he gave me no reason to believe that he was against marriage/marrying me/whatever the fuck his problem is.
Arghhhhh! Any opinions would be appreciated.

Orlea Wed 18-Dec-13 17:07:32

OP, stepping back from the issue of finances vs love vs commitment etc... do you want to be married, or do you want a wedding? Often people want both, but if you had to generalise, it would probably be that men don't mind or even want to be married, vs women who want not just to be married, but to have a wedding day with all the bits and pieces. A lot of men, in RL every single one of my friends' DHs and mine too, hated the idea of a Big Wedding Day, but they let us go ahead and have a nice wedding day (whatever our own vastly different interpretations of that were) and got through it - dare I say some even enjoyed their own weddings! Anyway, they are now all married and tbh it's not made a huge difference to most of us in terms ticking along with daily life, but it does give legal/financial security.

So do you want that big day or just the end result? Maybe your DP dreads the big day like my DH, in which case see what ThePinkOcelot said - have you tried telling him that it could be a few people in a registry office for 30min in two weeks' time? Would you be happy with that? Or would you hold out for the Big Wedding Day, in which case it's less about marriage and more about a big party... which might be why he's stalling. Have you had that conversation? Tbh if he's refusing to talk about it, I'd be at the point of sending him a nice but clear email (or note, whatever) stating your point of view and your proposed solutions, and ask him to give you his, either face to face or in kind.

Thisisaghostlyeuphemism Wed 18-Dec-13 16:47:27

One reason We put off marriage was an aversion to admin/paperwork.

Your dp clearly doesn't have that issue tho.

DirtyLittleSecrets Wed 18-Dec-13 16:32:14

I agree that you need to tell him that you won't be a SAHM without marriage because of the position it leaves you in. I also think you need to find out what his reasons are for not wanting to marry. If it's simply that he doesn't believe in it - I can relate. If it's that he's protecting what he sees as his, that's not ok in my opinion, not when you have children together.

JoinYourPlayfellows Wed 18-Dec-13 09:44:25

"He is happy to take your sacrifice of your education and career so he can benefit financially but he seems keen to reap those rewards for himself and actively prevent you and the dc having a share in what you have contributed to."

This ^

This is exactly the position you are in.

Of course he's happy with it (although, a genuinely decent and generous man would not be) and of course you are not (only a fool would be).

Offred Wed 18-Dec-13 09:08:56

How would he react if you said that you can't be a SAHM without marriage because it leaves you and the dc vulnerable and you wanted him to go part-time and you go back to work also part-time so the childcare was split between you? Or even that you work and he become a SAHD?

Offred Wed 18-Dec-13 09:05:46

She has already said both children were unplanned.

Divorce is not easy to get, but I'm not sure why it shouldn't be? Marriage is a contract and I don't believe people should feel contractually obliged to stay together, it should be easy to end it otherwise we end up with children living in unstable and unhappy homes which are known to be toxic to their development and (usually) women putting up with abuse because they feel contractually obliged to.

I don't believe it is wise to approach marriage from a love perspective. It is an important legal matter designed to protect vulnerable dependent partners and children financially.

You have children together so there are things you may be able to assert if you split up and had care of them but the main difference you should be concerned about is the costs of asserting your/your dc entitlements.

The law provides for automatic entitlement for a dependent spouse. If you want to assert your rights as a dependent cohabitee and he tries to let you have nothing then you will need to bring a number of expensive and stressful court cases in order to try and assert your rights and in this case there is no guarantee that you'll be successful. Unless there are large sums involved it is not likely you would have the resources to fight him legally for many of the things you have agreed if he, as the property owner, will not hand them over.

It is good that you've taken some steps to protect yourself legally but I, like others, think you are extremely unwise to be a SAHM without the protection of marriage.

I would be very concerned by this inheritance document in conjunction with him not wanting to marry. I would infer from that that he was not willing to marry because he wanted to protect his property and therefore I would be worried about what happened when you split.

He is happy to take your sacrifice of your education and career so he can benefit financially but he seems keen to reap those rewards for himself and actively prevent you and the dc having a share in what you have contributed to.

MrsTrellisNorthWales Wed 18-Dec-13 08:35:49

One person wants to be married (for whatever valid reason). One person doesn't (for whatever valid reason). Both love each other. Who is the one who should compromise? Whose want is more important than the other's?

If marriage is an absolute dealbreaker, why on earth would stay with someone this long and have a second child with them? I can understand the first was an unplanned surprise but the second one was a decision you both made. Did you really not know then that marriage was a dealbreaker for you? Did you really not discuss it before planning the second child? And if you did, and he refused to be drawn on why he didn't want to marry you - or marry anyone - that should have stopped you having the second child.

LadyInDisguise Wed 18-Dec-13 07:55:07

hippo all the next of kin stuff is really about protecting yourself in case of death. I agree that it is very important to look at, esp in your situation with no marriage as what would be the most normal thing in the world when you are married will not happen as cohabiting couple.

However, I am getting the feeling that this is not the reason why you want to get married.
Some posters have reacted strongly to the fact he has done his homework re protecting himself financially but hasn't supported you in doing the same. This is only one side of the story.
But even more important is what this 'piece of paper' means to you and the fact he hasn't acknowledged that. Or tried to explain his pov.

You really need to talk to him. Not in 2 weeks, not in one month. This has been a big issue for you and you keep delaying getting to the bottom of it. He has so far managed to brush you away very effectively. Don't let that happen again.
If you do, the only thing that will happen is that you will grown more and more apart and you will end up resenting him big way. A perfect combination for a failing relationship.

Twinklestein Tue 17-Dec-13 20:49:16

I feel guilty that we are his family and he's happy with the way things are I can't seem to be able to get to a place where it is enough for me too

Does he feel guilty that he can't seem to get to a place where marriage is for him? I bet he doesn't even think about it...

idontbelievethisnsmeistaken Tue 17-Dec-13 20:43:37

the decree absolute is of course just a piece of paper as well and the ease with which one can obtained does leave one wondering what is exactly was of such significance in the first place. best not get into this tho smile

JoinYourPlayfellows Tue 17-Dec-13 20:41:20

It's not just a symbolic piece of paper.

It's a piece of paper on which is printed an extremely important legal document.

melanie58 Tue 17-Dec-13 20:28:00

I hate it when people say marriage is 'just a piece of paper'. They miss the point that it's a hugely symbolic piece of paper. That's the bit that matters to some of us including the OP. No one ever suggests that my decree absolute is just a piece of paper and quite right too.

JoinYourPlayfellows Tue 17-Dec-13 19:43:13

"he is a lovely man outside of all the boring legal/financial side."

It wasn't so boring when he was making sure you'd never get your greedy mitts on HIS inheritance.

Was it?

It's only boring when YOU might have something to gain from it.

hippoesque Tue 17-Dec-13 19:40:43

Thanks for all the advice. Obviously he is taking the mick with regards to having everything his way but he is a lovely man outside of all the boring legal/financial side. Next Of Kin and POA stuff has given me something to think about so will be sifting through all our documents tonight to get a better understanding of where I stand in the future.

idontbelievethisnsmeistaken Tue 17-Dec-13 19:28:35

ah now not only is the OP's partner a waste of space but she herself has spent the last 8 years of her life with a man who is "fucking her over" and she would be a "fool" not to listen to this lot. I despair.

JoinYourPlayfellows Tue 17-Dec-13 19:14:06

"I feel guilty that we are his family and he's happy with the way things are I can't seem to be able to get to a place where it is enough for me too"

Of COURSE he's happy with the way things are - you're the one who's totally fucked over by the status quo.

He's fucking golden - nice "wife" at home looking after the kids and he could walk away with a new woman tomorrow and you'd have NOTHING from him except what the CSA could force him to pay.

If that's enough for you, then you're a fool.

idontbelievethisnsmeistaken Tue 17-Dec-13 18:09:10

first of all let's get real. she has been with the guy for a long time and has two children by him, telling her he is a waste of space and that he has no real intention of spending the rest of his life with her is preposterous. all you need to do is find out how he really feels about you and how he sees his future. plenty of people do not marry in this day and age but it does not mean they don't love each other or want to spend the rest of their lives together.

approach with care and do not treat him like a waste of space just because some stranger fees justified somehow in calling one having read a few paragraphs about the two of you on a forum.

I think if you could find out why he did not want to get married.. are you religious ? if he is opposed completely to marriage and you really want to get married then obviously you need to decide what is more important here. it is just a piece of paper and you should be aware that that is what you would be breaking up your family for. clearly he has demonstrated commitment to you up until now...

LegoStillSavesMyLife Tue 17-Dec-13 18:02:38

I wouldn't wait until new year to be honest. Sit him down tonight and explain why marriage is important to you and then ask him what the fuck his problem is for his thoughts.

But seriously a SAHM without the protection of marriage is not wise.

Jan45 Tue 17-Dec-13 17:15:37

It's actually disgusting to think a man can have two children with a woman and then have the audacity to protect his assets, not giving a feck if she (and the children) have any financial protection at all.

On top of that, he's been fobbing the OP off for a long time re the marriage situation, saying he'll get around to it and is fully aware she is at breaking point.

Seriously, OP, kick this waste of space in to touch, he either does the decent thing or you are moving on in the New Year. Stop thinking about him and start thinking about you and what you need and want and deserve.

oscarwilde Tue 17-Dec-13 16:41:15

Do you think he actually knows how bad your position is if anything happens to him?
What does ^actually happen if his family have passed away and the OP is not the legal "next of kin"? Does he become a ward of Social Services or something?

ThePinkOcelot Tue 17-Dec-13 16:34:29

OP, I was in your exact position. My OH wasn't interested in getting married. He didn't see the point. We have 2 dds. I wasn't happy. So I booked it and told him the date we were getting married. Turned out it wasn't being married that he didn't want, it was the wedding. So we had quite a small do and it was a lovelyday. We have been married for nearly 6 years now. Good luck.

BobPatSamandIgglePiggle Tue 17-Dec-13 16:30:17

I know exactly how you feel - I want to marry because I love DP, DS has his name and I want us to be a proper family unit. He's not arsed and avoids talking baout it if he possible can.

No avice but just wanted to say you're not being unreasonable.

oscarwilde Tue 17-Dec-13 16:27:10

I do know someone who proposed and it went down badly as he had wanted to do it (but never got his arse in gear to do it). He stalled and then waited 6 months before asking. She was on the verge of leaving by then. If you've already asked then I wouldn't ask again but I'd give it to the beginning of Jan to be on the safe side smile

I'm sorry OP but I suspect you are going to need to start planning a new life if it is that important to you. At a minimum you should be stepping up training in preparation for the job market.

hippoesque Tue 17-Dec-13 16:21:52

Ahhhh tried that at Leap Year. Is there an emoji for lead balloon?

oscarwilde Tue 17-Dec-13 16:21:09

You could propose at NY ?

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now