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.
My dp and my mother...am I overreacting?(67 Posts)
I have been with dp for a year. I have 2 dcs from my marriage, he has 3 dcs. I am pregnant with our first together, due in December. I knew dp years ago when I was growing up, we lived in the same town but he was 9 years older than me. We went on one date about 12 years ago but then met and married other people. We got together last year after both of our marriages ended.
My relationship with my mum has never been great. She drank a lot when my brother and I were young. My dad worked nights and she was out most nights in the pub while he was working. She's a toxic narcissistic person and I don't have much to do with her although we live about 5 mins apart.
Last week my dp sat me down and told me that about 18 years ago he slept with my mother. (I'd have been a young teen, he was early 20s, she was in her 40s). Apparently they were out drinking one night...you know the rest. He told me because he got a text from an anonymous number saying that the sender knew it had happened and would tell me if my dp didn't tell me first. Apparently he discussed it with my mother who told him to lie about it, but he refused saying he wanted to be honest with me.
Since then my head has been all over the place. I'm trying to keep my relationship with dp normal for the sake of the kids and because I do love him but I'm having real trouble being intimate with him. I just cant do it. I haven't spoken to my mother. She knows dp told me...she went mental at him and said he should have lied to me. This happened a week ago and she has not once lifted the phone to speak to me.
I hate her for cheating on my dad...he's such a good guy and deserves so much better than her. Apparently my dp wasn't the only guy she was with over the years. I don't want anything to do with her right now but don't know how to maintain a relationship with my dad apart from her without him knowing something is wrong.
I feel so confused. Its been a buy week anyway, I haven't had a minute to myself to think...now dps kids are arriving today for the week and all I want to do is pack a bag and go away by myself for a couple of days to figure out how I feel. I feel so hurt that they both lied to me for so long. Dp only told me because he was being blackmailed and my mum had no intention of ever telling me. I feel like an idiot.
This is not something I could get over.
I would say to go ahead and pack a bag.
You need some head space to figure this out.
Get away and have a good think about what your boundaries are, what your deal-breakers are.
I'm so sorry you are having to deal with this.
Thank you. I'm so confused...its obviously no something I can discuss in real life with anyone. As well meaning as friends are I cant take the risk of anyone else finding out...it would break my dads heart if he heard and I cant do it to him.
I want to get over this but I don't know if I can. I have a feeling dp is going to propose this week and I just don't know what to do.
So your DP has kept this secret all these years? Your mother sounds vile. I think you can get over this but it's going to take a long time.
You are no idiot, they two are, they both crossed a very thick line that you shouldn't, it kinda shows them up as not very moral or considerate people but maybe you need to get al the details first from your DP in order to process it all.
Weird after 18 years your DP would get an anonymous text, it all sounds very cloak and dagger.
Wow. That's a lot to process, so do not be afraid to tell everybody that you need to take that time in whatever way works for you.
The way I see it is that you have two options (you and/or others may disagree of course):
you can walk away, having decided that it is too much - and I don't think you'd find anyone who would judge you for this;
or, and this would be hard I'm sure, you can look at it from the point of view that the man who did this is a different person to the man you are with now. I know you are hurt that he didn't tell you, and whilst I would normally advocate honesty, I can completely understand why he didn't. He knew it was a mistake, he's probably ashamed, and he likely just wanted to pretend it never happened. Telling you would only have hurt you.
I feel like it would be useful for you to try to separate your feelings about your mother from this - if you can.
If you cannot discuss this in RL, you will find a great deal of support here from more experienced and wise posters than me.
I could not get over this, he should never have started a relationship with you knowing he had this secret. You could probably "forget" this short term,but long term will possibly destroy your relationship.
I think he needs to leave and give you space and remember a proposal will only make things more complicated for you .Good luck
Regarding the anonymous text I have a feeling my exh is behind it. I have no idea how he found out but he has been consistently causing trouble for us over the last year. He was abusive and controlling and hates the fact I left.
Dp has given me all the info he can really...they were out one night, drank too much, ended up in bed together and it has never been mentioned since by either of them. I just cant imaging going back to a situation whereby we all sit down to Christmas dinner together. Its just too weird for me.
Well your dp would have to be one seriously insensitive schmuck to propose straight after this bombshell. If he does, I would just say 'that's not something I want to consider right now'.
I think you do need to get away. Is there some reason why you can't?
I'm intrigued by the blackmailer. It seems very unlikely dp doesn't know who this is. Have you actually seen the text?
In terms of keeping it from your dad, I don't see why you should, I'm afraid. Your mum should be given an ultimatum to tell your dad. But as I'm sure she won't, I don't see why you should keep her secret, and have it poison your relationship with your dad. Why should you lose both parents because of your mother's toxicity?
Take some time out and process this properly. It will eat you up if you have to keep it all inside.
I'm also terrified at the idea that my dad will find out. If he does I feel I will be torn between him and my dp... I couldn't expect him to have anything to do with my dp after hearing this. And then bringing a baby into the midst of it all. He'd be the grandfather of a baby I had with the guy his wife slept with behind his back. I've been totally blocking all this out for the last week, its the first time I've been on my own and had head space. Sorry I'm probably rambling a bit at this stage.
*I would say to go ahead and pack a bag.
You need some head space to figure this out.*
It would be this for me too I think, if at all possible. Also, I know you're worried about your dad, but I don't think you should take responsibility for his happiness - you have enough on your plate.
Tribpot the only reason I cant go is because of my kids... they're looking forward to my dps kids coming down today so I don't want to take them away. They'll be with their dad from Friday to Sunday though so if I don't feel better then I think I'll go.
Yep, this is why family secrets are so corrosive.
You don't know that your dad isn't fully aware of your mother's past (even if she doesn't know he suspects or knows). Did he know she was going out on the piss whilst he was at work? (Who on earth was looking after you whilst all this was going on?)
There's no way back from this to the fragile (if fictitious) version of your family that existed last week. I do strongly believe in the saying 'sunlight is the best disinfectant'. But there's no need for you to do anything about this until you're ready.
By not telling your dad you're taking his choices away from him, just as yours were taken from you by the deception. Perhaps he would decide to forgive your dp in time - it was a long time ago, your dp was young, free and single. He made a mistake but he wasn't the one who was married. If your dad wants to be part of your life he will ultimately have to deal with the reality you're now living in.
However, one step at a time. I think you are thinking too much about the far-reaching consequences and not about the immediate pain to you, caused by your partner. I would imagine the deception is probably more painful than the actual facts. What else hasn't he told you? And if your exh is the blackmailer, how did he find out? How did you find out that your dp wasn't the only person your mum has cheated on your dad with, did he (dp) tell you that? (And if so, how would he know?)
Yes, I assume you'd leave the kids at home, otherwise you wouldn't really be getting any headspace to deal with this. I don't really see why dp can't deal with them all whilst you get some time away but failing that, Friday seems like your chance to escape.
I don't suppose it would have been your dad sending the text?
I think you need some time to sort your head out. I'd ask him to leave.
On the other hand, it was a long long time ago when you were both little.
I'm not surprised he never said anything before, he probably massively regrets it too.
Yeah lovely time to propose when your head is full of that Jeremy Kyle shit.
Mmmmm anonimous text after 18 yrs & your DM us a narc
I would lay bets your DM sent that text - it feeds her need to be centre stage, which she now is
It's a difficult one to get passed, BUT it is history & your DP was a testosterone driven drunk youngster who was probably single at the time & if it were anyone but your Adam, you would no doubt shrug & not care,
There is no excuse for your DM of course, but you know her form already
I agree with those saying take some time out & clear your head & definitely distance yourself from DM, she sounds as toxic as it gets, I'm sure by the sound of it enough has gone on for your DF to understand without knowing about this.
Hope you are okay & stay strong
Sack him. You aren't going to feel comfortable with this.
Get rid- he may have been a different person when he did this but he should have told you from the off.
Not telling you and discussing it with your mum would be far to big a betrayal for me to get over.
Thanks for the replies. I think i do need to get away for a while. Dps home and annoyed that i'm not being nice enough to his kids. He thinks i should be totally over this and we should move on. Nice.
YANBU. Definitely get away for a few days. I think he was wrong to get involved in a relationship with you knowing what he had done with your mother. Ughhh.
Deal breaker for me. Your mother is awful too, acting like a....
I just cant believe this is happening right now. I was so happy in the relationship. After being with an abusive ex for 12 years I was finally happy. The kids love him, our babys due in a few months. I'm so confused.
What a bombshell for you to deal with. I cant even begin to imagine how I'd feel.
For what it's worth, I think now is not the time to feel pressurised in to making any sort of decision. Just give yourself plenty of time for the shock to pass and for you to get used to the idea.
It might be worth keeping in mind that
a) neither could have known the two of you would get together in the future so neither did it to hurt you.
b)your dp did a stupid thing - but lots of young men do far stupider things and, from what you say, he's grown up to be a responsible father and a good partner.
c) his motive for secrecy would have been to protect you and safeguard your relationship - he must cringe inside every time he sees your dm yet until his hand was forced, he prioritised you rather than giving himself the relief of "clearing his conscience" with you.
d) you didn't need to find out about this to know what your dm is like - she saw an opportunity and took it.
e) you are not responsible for your parents' relationship. Your dad may or may not have suspicions about your dm but he is a grown-up. He has known your dm even longer than you so he's either happy as he is or has made a pragmatic decision to accept her and the marriage as they are.
You have had a horrible shock but it doesn't have to mean the end (although that is exactly what the texter is hoping for). It happened a long time ago, and your dp is a very different person now.
Concentrate on looking after yourself and your baby and don't let someone who wasn't even brave enough to identify themselves push you in to doing something you haven't had nearly enough time to consider. Your dm's selfish actions may well have pretty much shattered her nuclear family but they don't have to shatter yours and your dc's.
Take lots of time and think about your dp's motives for keeping it secret before you decide anything.
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.