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.

Ds refusing to meet partner

(31 Posts)
Savagebeauty Tue 03-May-16 06:31:00

I divorced 18 months ago after a long EA marriage.
Met someone purely by chance who lives 200 miles away. We see each other every month ( in his home town) and are planning to be together in 18 months once ds is at uni. He has never visited my home..we are still in the family home (just sold) and I felt it was inappropriate.
DD has met him. And liked him. Ds 17 hasn't.
He is now refusing to meet him, saying he doesn't want to.
Ex has a partner . He has form for slagging me off in public and spreading rumours.
DD thinks ds is being immature and unfair. I'm hoping he will come round but feel upset about the whole thing.

IWILLgiveupsugar Tue 03-May-16 06:34:57

Don't force a meeting. DS clearly isn't ready. But do challenge what your ex is saying to your son - don't allow your ds to remain under the misconception that you are in the wrong or that your exh's words have any truth in them.

Things are hard for your ds - he is about to lose the childhood home, his parents are in conflict. He is not ready for a new man to be part of the mix.

Savagebeauty Tue 03-May-16 06:40:39

No I would never force a meeting.
It so happens that we are in partners town soon and I suggested we could maybe meet for lunch.
The answer was a resounding no.
I feel that I'm treading on egg shells now...just as I was when I was married. Ex is very good at falling out with people/ blanking them for years, even his own family.
Unfortunately ds has his stubborn streak and sees things in black and white.
I do not see or speak to ex ( apart from by text) although he lives in the area....his choice.

IWILLgiveupsugar Tue 03-May-16 06:45:19

I think that all you can do is wait it out and reassure ds that he comes first and that you are not abandoning him for a new life. 17is still really young,so he might still need to be treated like a kid and not a nearly adult.

Hissy Tue 03-May-16 07:46:50

Love, honestly you barely know this bloke, he's a boyfriend not a partner. You have not spent prolonged periods of time together, you've not just done the casual day today stuff.

Don't rush to do the intros thing, or make big plans etc, the timeline seems like it could be viewed by ds that you're counting down the time to ship him out to ship bloke in.

The worst thing you can do is force a new relationship on your teenage son. He might think you're being an idiot in committing so much to someone you don't see much of. Or he may be jealous, or the ex has said something, either way he's not happy and you need to stop and listen.

Dellarobia Tue 03-May-16 07:53:18

Does it really matter if your DS and your new partner don't meet? I do realise it must be upsetting, but why are you treading on eggshells because of it? Don't tread on eggshells, just continue with your new relationship and tell your DS that it's fine, you understand it's hard for him and he can meet your new partner whenever he feels ready.

TheNaze73 Tue 03-May-16 14:26:43

I can't see why on earth you would be in a rush for them to meet anyway? Enjoy the dating, one date at a time. Surely all that can wait?

ImperialBlether Tue 03-May-16 14:33:12

I would be very careful about living with this man (if that's what you intend) as soon as your son moves out. He won't take kindly to that and you do want to keep a good relationship with him. Perhaps your boyfriend could stay over for weekends, then, so that you get used to spending a lot more time together, rather than moving in?

Savagebeauty Tue 03-May-16 15:24:24

Oh he is definitely my partner grin
I've known him 2 years, we do have long term plans and he will be visiting over the summer.
We will eventually move in together in 18 months.

Chlobee87 Tue 03-May-16 15:34:48

Love, honestly you barely know this bloke, he's a boyfriend not a partner. How patronising and rude!

If you think that your exH has been putting ideas in his head then maybe it's time for a very frank conversation with DS. Explain that your marriage with his dad was never going to work. If you want to mention that your exH was EA then go for it, it's the truth after all. Explain that his dad has moved on, and that you are entitled to do the same. You're sorry that he feels badly about it but you deserve some happiness too and you are sure he wouldn't want or expect you to be lonely or unhappy forever. Say that you won't force a meeting but that you do intend to keep seeing this man and that you have got plans for the future.

Basically, a bit of tough love is in order. Yes you need to be sensitive to your DS's needs but he is 17, not 7. Your happiness matters too and he needs to show you some respect. I think that by not challenging him, the problem is that you are then enabling his behaviour and justifying it to him. It's not good for him to distance himself or harbour feelings of resentment.

BertrandRussell Tue 03-May-16 15:45:57

So you've met him 18 times...........

hellsbellsmelons Tue 03-May-16 15:49:45

I think if you want to meet with your DP when in his town then do it.
Tell your DS his is welcome to join you but you will be meeting up with him.

WannaBe Tue 03-May-16 15:53:50

The slight overlap in your timeline between separation and new partner (of which the new partner came first) aside, you cannot make your children meet or like your new partner. He is your choice not theirs.

You are perfectly entitled to choose to have a new partner and to move him in as soon as the kids move out, but so are your children perfectly entitled to choose to have nothing to do with him, and as nearly adults they are quite able to do that.

Hissy Tue 03-May-16 16:39:17

I absolutely agree that you deserve happiness, but not when it potentially comes with such a high risk.

In general close location relationships 18/20 "dates" would have already occurred in a fewer number of weeks. Very few would call each other boyfriend/girlfriend after a couple of dozen dates, let alone partner. Neither are Phone/Skype reliable ways of building a relationship. They fool the parties into feeling a sense of investment that just isn't real. Long term "plans" are merely ideas. There's nothing concrete.

So far you are only showing each other what you want to show, you are not allowing space to work out for yourselves who is who, and what is what.

Let me put some context here; it takes on average 2 years for a normal common or garden abuser to let the mask slip. Nasty/thick ones let the guard down sooner.

I'm not saying he's abusive, or indeed you are, I don't know either of you, but you see you only know what each other wants you to see.

I hope I'm wrong, but the fact is you can't know him sufficiently to be able to judge if he is who he says he is. Likewise he can't get the full measure of you.

Walk first. If it's meant to be, it will be. Look before you leap, and don't give titles that have not been earned.

WannaBe Tue 03-May-16 16:46:03

To be fair partner is just a title. People here do place far too much emphasis on what a person can and can't call the person they are currently seeing.

There are people here who say that someone can't be a partner unless you are living together for instance. My DP and I don't live together because distance and work etc makes that impossible. Yet we are engaged and have been together for three years. It's not up to anyone else to decide what he can and cannot be called.

The issue here isn't whether they're ready to move in together or not. They're adults who are perfectly capable of making their own decisions, many couples move in together after much less time, have children together etc and no-one questions that.

The issue here is that the DS doesn't want to know this man, and the OP needs to decide what impact that is going to have on her life. She is perfectly entitled to be happy and to move on, even more so if her children are now of school leaving age, but is she prepared to move on at the expense of her relationship with her DS? That is the real consideration here.

Pinkheart5915 Tue 03-May-16 16:51:34

Don't force a meeting on ds, he clearly isn't ready.
In time he will come round and the fact that you dd liked your new partner will encourage your ds round to the idea.
Let ds take his time.

DrinkFeckArseGirls Tue 03-May-16 17:00:15

I think using a word "partner" for a boyfriend shows lack of emotional maturity. You might as well call him "husband" which he clearly isn't. He's a bloke you shag once a month, no?

DrinkFeckArseGirls Tue 03-May-16 17:02:58

I'm sure he's a very nice bloke but no need to force your DS to do sth he doenst want. When you start living closer together, then maybe your Ds will see that both of you are commiyed and will show interest. Unless you move him in straight away.

WannaBe Tue 03-May-16 17:16:12

'I think using a word "partner" for a boyfriend shows lack of emotional maturity. You might as well call him "husband" which he clearly isn't. He's a bloke you shag once a month, no?" And yet the OP could have married this bloke, he might be in the forces for instance and they may only see each other every three months and no-one would be quite so disparaging about the relationship.

It is the OP's relationship. If she considers him her partner who else's business is it but her's?

DrinkFeckArseGirls Tue 03-May-16 17:23:17

If someone's partner is in the forces they still share the financial and housing affairs, etc. All I'm saying that it's not paramount for the OP's DS to meet her man as atm it's a very casual set up. Just an opinion.

FlyingElbows Tue 03-May-16 17:31:33

I really wish that people who divorce would remember that they have chosen to leave dissolve that relationship and the children have had the breakdown of their life forced upon them. People must remember that their relationship with their spouse is NOT the same as their child's relationship with that spouse. Op I don't doubt for a second that your divorce was the right thing but it was the right thing got you, you're ready to move on. Your 17 year old son is emotionally little more than a child and he's dealing with the breakdown of his family, a breakdown he had no say in. He's not ready to move on yet. I wasn't ready either when, a few months after my mother moved us out of our home, she got a new partner. She was absolutely ready as her marriage had been dead for years but I was just a few weeks the other side of the collapse of everything I knew. Go softly, let him get through it and he'll come round when he's ready. Enjoy your new relationship but for now your relationship with your new partner and your relationship with your son need to be separate. You don't need to pretend it doesn't exist and don't pussyfoot round your son, just don't make it a massive deal. Oh and ffs don't move your son out and man he's never met in in his place. That way trouble lies!

WannaBe Tue 03-May-16 17:34:14

No it's not essential but tbh the DS is seventeen. This isn't a situation where we're talking about small children who need to be protected from the fact their mum is seeing someone. She obviously considers that her relationship is serious and that isn't for anyone else to judge but her.

The issue here is that her DS doesn't want to meet him and how she deals with that. And to be honest she may not be able to. And at that point comes the choice of whether or not she thinks the relationship has a future based on her children's opinion.

It's a situation which changes as the children's ages change. While they're still young and living at home I would say that inability to get on with a new partner should have some bearing on how far the person takes the relationship. To move a new partner into the family home while there are children still living in it who don't feel they can adjust would be selfish IMO. Whereas if the children are older such as the DS who is nearly at school leaving age, the situation is different. Because he will be leaving home soon anyway. He can certainly decide whether or not he wants to get to know this new partner, but he certainly shouldn't have a say in whether he moves in once he, the DS, is no longer living there. And it's only eighteen months or so until he presumably goes to uni if he's going. The oP shouldn't be expected to put her life on hold beyond that point, and the DS will be of an age where they should be able to have a mature discussion about it.

PattyPenguin Tue 03-May-16 18:43:38

The OP's son is 17. With the wages that young people earn these days and the cost of housing, they don't generally leave at 18. (The laughable "National Living Wage" only applies to over 25s, and even that doesn't really cover outgoings, particularly for anyone on a contract without guaranteed hours.) Even if they go to university, many of them end up back home again. 20% of people in their 30s are still living with their parents.

So the OP's son may not leave home - unless he feels he's being pushed out. What will that do to his relationship with his mother?

Two anecdotals. A young woman I used to know disliked her mother's new man intensely and moved out as soon as he moved in. The last time I saw this young woman she had a 3-year-old daughter, and the grandmother had never met the child.

Another young woman I knew also disliked her mother's new man, but said "I'll be moving away soon and I don't want Mum to be on her own". Mind you, I don't think she goes to see her mother very often.

So if it were me, I'd be going on very cautiously.

ravenmum Tue 03-May-16 19:04:42

*I feel that I'm treading on egg shells now...just as I was when I was married. Ex is very good at falling out with people/ blanking them for years, even his own family.
Unfortunately ds has his stubborn streak and sees things in black and white.*
I can understand that you are critical of your ex, but this seems harsh on your son, saying that he has inherited his father's nasty side. Does he remind you a little too much of your ex for your own comfort?

Really, you're the adult here, you should be comforting your children after the hard time they have gone through in the last few years, not criticising them if they can't cope as you'd like. It's good that you are leaving it up to your son to choose if and when he wants to meet, but you really do need to be the bigger person here and be understanding that a 17-year-old is just not able to work out all the subtleties of a complicated situation, or be able to cope with his dad being "replaced" so quickly. Your feelings about your son's choice have to come well below that. You need to really, truly, accept his choice: not just to say that he has a choice but to actually let him have one, without feeling guilty because his mother doesn't like it.

I take it that you met this new man when you were already finalising the divorce, but does your son see it that way, or does he see this man as somehow complicit in your separation?

Savagebeauty Tue 03-May-16 19:17:24

Blimey there are some real assumptions and patronising comments here!!
I don't see him on a "date" but for four days at a time. We spend time with my sibling not just holed up having a shag
I have no intention of moving him to the family home.
It will be 18 months before we get together as a couple in terms of being in the same city.
And we are both mid fifties so will be almost 60 before that happens. Hardly
Loves young dream.

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