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.
Make or break night(38 Posts)
Hey everyone. So tonight me and dp are going out for a drink to try resolve some of our differences. I've suggested going to the pub as I know we will just argue at home and we've had such a crap weekend, I think it will do us good to get out of the house.
Dp has 2 kids boy and girl, the girl is a teenager and the boy is a toddler. I have 2 children inbetween those ages too. We have dps children every weekend and in all honesty, the weekends are awful. I dread them. Not because of his kids, me and my children have grown very close to them and they get on great. Dp really does struggle with his kids when he has them, he seems to get so stressed out. I do understand as the teenager just expects to do something every weekend, usually something that involves lots of money and the toddler is going through a stage of tantrums. If we don't do anything, the teenager just constantly complains she bored but then ends up making some kind of den or playing a game which literally turns my house into a bomb site. That really makes me angry but anyway. Dps kids do get on to a certain extent but the toddler annoys the teenager and the teenager is getting a bit of an attitude problem as teenagers do. He struggles to find things to do with them that they both would enjoy but it's hard. Plus everything we seem to suggest, the teenager doesn't want to do.
Now me and my kids are not the type of family that will go out and do something every weekend. Simply cos I can't afford it but this isn't an issue to my kids. They are happy just being at home, playing with toys, watching films etc.
The weekends that we do stay in though are awful, every time one of the kids moans about something, it's just like he can't handle it. It's usually my youngest dc and dps toddler that argue. The toddler will pick something up of my dds and say 'that's mine' my dd is only 4 and doesn't like that so she will say 'no it's not it's mine' and then they can squabble a little bit but to me, it's nothing major. It's just kids, it's what kids do. You can't bring 2 families together and expect them to get on all the time. However my dp gets so stressed about these little arguments they have etc that I've started to go to my mums for a bit here and there over the weekends, just to give us all a break. And because my dcs absolutely love my mums house, they would rather live there than with me lol.
So Friday night my dcs stayed at my mums and Saturday lunch time I went over to pick them up. I ended up staying at my mums for a few hours as she had her partner round who I've not seen for a while, kids were happy playing etc so thought there's no need to rush back. We were then going to dps mums house for tea and her house is close to my mums so I thought there's no point in me driving all the way home to set off back again an hour later.
Anyway went to dps mums, was all fine, then dp started to get abut stressed with his dcs so I said I was gonna take my kids home and I'd see him when he got back. Even his mum had a go at him and said he needs to stop getting so wound up all the time. Anyway when he finally came home he was in a bad mood. I asked him what was wrong and he basically said he feels like I'm constantly avoiding his children, that our family isn't working for him and it's making him unhappy. I went absolutely balistic, I said it's not his children I avoid because me and my kids love them very much, it's him that I avoid as I can't deal with how stressed he gets. He said from now on he's going to do his own thing with his kids every weekend and I said that's fine, do what you want basically.
Things have been pretty crap between us since then. It's such a shame as we get on brilliantly, we never argue. He's very affectionate, always doing nice things for me etc but when the weekends come, it all goes down hill.
Part of me feels he just needs me there when he has his dcs to help him look after them. I'm going to address this tonight. His dps are not a burden to me at all, I'm always helping him with them like picking them up if he's working late or dropping them off. I honestly feel like I cannot do anymore for them. But the fact that I went to my mums for an afternoon isn't good enough :-/
Dp is trying to be normal around me but I'm still so mad, he wanted sex this morning and I said no as I just wasn't in the mood, it's the first time I've ever been like that so he went off to work in a mood this morning too. We haven't said 'love you' since I went mad either which we usually do, there's been no messages from him today which I'd usually get when he's working.
I'm just wondering if we really do have a future now, I can't see how anything can or needs to change. His attitude needs to change but he's so stubborn I can't see it happening.
We are looking to move into a bigger house next month but now I'm just thinking we should maybe look for our own places if he's not happy with our family, I don't want to make a big commitment like that knowing he can't cope with our 4 kids every weekend. We've talked about having a baby of our own too, I really would love one more child but again, I can't see that happening. If he treated my child like he can his children sometimes, I couldn't cope with it.
It's just so sad, every weekend when it comes to dropping the kids off, he always feels so bad about how stressed he's got with him. But he never changes.
I'm thinking the mood he's in now and the mood I'm in now, we might just call it a day. I don't want that but if he isn't willing to change then I don't see what else I can do. His kids really are hard work but that's kids for you, they are his responsibility and he needs to learn how to deal with them when he has them :-/
Well if I was him, I'd be kissing the bottom of your feet, you are right, you can't do anything more for his children, you seem to do more than he does himself.
I couldn't live like this, he either stops his behaviour or decide it's not working, he sounds more work than them tbh.
And sex is not a right he has, perhaps if he treated you better he'd have got a shag, makes me mad these men going off in the huff because their partner said no, they are not entitled to anybody's body!
How the hell would he cope without you because it sounds like you are doing more than you should be and I'd honestly pull back and let him parent his OWN children.
He is the one that's hard work, you are right there. The atmosphere in the house on the weekends is due to him. Not the kids. I say time and time again, the kids will always argue. They will always fight, we cannot change that no matter how hard we try. But he just can't see it at all. To be fair, my dd is a pain at the minute, I obviously love her to the moon and back but she whines at everything and anything. She's got picky with food and if she doesn't get what she wants she just screams. She started school in September and I was hoping that might do her some good but it's just seems to have made her worse unfortunately. Through the week, it doesn't really bother dp but on a weekend it will, especially if the toddler starts too.
He constantly says to me how important it is for children to know who's in charge and I do agree but he takes it to the next level. He says I'm too soft and need to be stricter, and yeah I do agree to a certain extent but me and my children are very close, I don't tell them off unless I really have too. I want me and my dcs to always have the bond that we do. I think he maybe struggles with that as he doesn't have that with his dcs.
As for the sex thing, I think he was more shocked than anything. We usually do it every day but this morning I just wasn't having it. I don't think he was in a mood cos he didn't get it, I think it was more the fact that I was still in a mood where he just wants to forget about it all. Everything we do argue, he will be like 'let's just forget it' but I always struggle to let things go if they've upset me or made me angry.
I just know tonight I've got to really get my point across about how it's him that causes all the stress and not the kids. Don't get me wrong, having 4 kids at totally different ages is hard work but it doesn't have to be like this. I do feel for him though cos the teenager is starting to wind me up with her attitude and I think she does like to press his buttons.
I dunno, deep down I think the right thing is to separate :-( but like I say, most of the time we are brilliant so it would be such a shame to let it all go x
He has a teenager and a toddler? Do these 2 dc have the same dm? when When did he split up with her, or the mother of his youngest, and when did he move in with you?
You might be brilliant when it's just the two of you but I don't think you are going to get the outcome you want, people don't normally change or change that much; I think your life with him may always be like this, he's one of life's misery guts where kids are concerned, the blended family isn't for him, he's not got what it takes to make it work.
Instead of criticising you for your parenting ways he should be taking a leaf out your book.
I am sorry but it takes two and where kids are concerned, you need to both been on the same page and you are not, you are two different I think for this to work out.
but like I say, most of the time we are brilliant so it would be such a shame to let it all go x
Do not get hung up on the sunken costs fallacy; that basically causes people to keep on making poor relationship decisions.
The idea of sunk cost states that an investment of money, time or energy must not necessarily influence your continued investment of money, time or energy. The past investment is “sunk” into the endeavor and cannot be recouped. It is gone. Ongoing investment will not resuscitate what is gone when the investment is a bad one.
People get bogged down by focusing on their sunk costs.
There are two ways to understand this process, both involving avoidance. One is an avoidance of disappointment or loss when something doesn’t work out. When a relationship doesn’t succeed, especially after a long period, especially after many shared experiences and especially after developing a hope that the relationship would be a good one, it is a loss. It is a loss of what might have been and an acknowledgement that a part of one’s life has been devoted to this endeavour.
Another angle to evaluate is that focus on “sunk cost” creates a distraction from one’s inner truth. The sentence often goes like, “I’ve already invested to much, so I can’t notice my thoughts and feelings that are telling me to end or change this relationship.”
This is a type of insidious defense against noticing yourself. You enter into a neglectful relationship with yourself which divorces you from your inner thoughts and the quiet feelings that might guide you in your life. In other words, thinking about what already has been may prevent you from deciding what you want your life to be.
What do you get out of this relationship now?. That's a question you can certainly think about.
When are you really brilliant together?.
the fact that I went to my mums for an afternoon isn't good enough
You mean he criticised you for it?
This doesn't sound like a relationship that can survive the blending of the families, but might survive as two people living in their own homes. Unfortunately I think that does rule out the two of you having a baby together, but let's be honest, he can't really hack it as a parent anyway.
I feel for all the kids, being put through this wringer every weekend by the various parents involved. Why don't his kids ever stay at home with their mum(s)? Don't they have stuff they want to do at weekends with their friends, esp the teenager?
We are brilliant together in that we are very close, the best of friends really. We have the same sense of humour, same interests, good sex life, lots of affection. He is very affectionate towards me in front of his family and friends too which I've never known before. He is great with my kids - shame I can't say that for his own though :-/
And yes 2 different mothers, toddler was a result of a ons. When he has just one of his kids, if the other wasn't with us for the weekend, he's brilliant. It's just when he has them both he can't deal with it.
When did you meet him and how long has he been living with you?
No the teenager doesn't seem bothered about doing things with her friends tbh. It won't be long until she wants to do her own thing though - she's 13. Actually thinking about it, she never goes to friends parties or anything. I've never thought about this before. I wonder if her mum just says 'no you can't go as it's the weekend with your dad'? She's very popular at school and does have a lot of friends though.
Remember his moods will be affecting your children also, I assume your weekends with your kids were fun but now he is draining the atmosphere?
Yeah that's the main thing for me. He never shouts at my kids or anything. If he did, he would be out the door. Our kids get on great though, they really really do. Like I say, the odd squabble but nothing bad. In my opinion it's not bad anyway. To see them all running about, playing, laughing etc is so lovely and I know he can see it too. But then one of them might push the other or something and then his raised voice starts - again not at my children but at his
Yeah but your kids are still having to listen to angry shouting person, not good.
2 years is very fresh, if you can go back to dating and live separately, your children should not have to suffer him.
Is the teenager an only child at home? If she is, then it can't be that much fun for her to suddenly get flung in with 3 little kids.
It sounds like your dp has never had to do more than a bit of part time parenting, which is why he can't handle it and doesn't know what to do.
I think you need to sit hum down and tell him that you'll take charge from now on, until he gets enough experience and he can take over. All he has to do is support you and not get stressed about what's going on. I have 4 kids, and at times it's very full on and I'm sure overwhelming for people not used to it.
I wouldn't make any plans for a bigger house or a baby yet but I don't think there's anything really wrong with your relationship and he's got to understand that with or without you, he'd still have his kids at weekends.
If it doesn't work, then you can consider different houses but staying in a relationship in the long term. But to be honest, it sounds as if he's inexperienced and getting stressed about it and looking for you to help.
Wow this sounds complicated!
Four kids is hard work and it will be noisy and there will be fighting. That is normal. the fact that all the dc get on well sounds positive.
It sounds like your dp just isn't used to having that many kids around. If his eldest is a teen, i'm guessing that when he was with her mum that it was just her, if the toddler was a result of a ons then he isn't even used to having his own two dc around 24/7. Adding your two in the mix is obviously too much for him.
is part of the problem that your weekends are unstructured? I have two teen dc's (13 and 15) and sometimes I look after my 2 nephews who are 3 and 5. As much as they all get on it can be hell if i don't have a plan with them! It may be as simple as having a good plan for the weekend - ideally where you all get some time together as a new blended family and also some time apart with your own dc. As other people have said, it can't be any fun for your dc to be around this chaos and he should have some quality time with his dc.
If this doesn't work and everyone is still miserable then i would say you are better off living apart.
His ds does have a younger brother - her mums son with her partner. She is very motherly and very good with all the dcs but sometimes it's too much and she tries to take over. She will do role play games with them and get them all involved but then she will take it way too seriously (I think she's very young for her age, she still brings a doll with her every weekend with a bottle and clothes - I am NOT saying there's anything wrong with this by the way) and the toddler will do something wrong in the game and she will get angry with the toddler.
It is too much for him, it can be for me too at times. But we see things very differently. I think we need to take a step back from the relationship. It is very complicated but I've always thought it was worth it because despite all this, he's not a bad person. I've never known anyone so sweet and romantic in my life. I just think it may all end tonight. Still not heard from him but he will probably be home soon
And yeah we do try plan things, summer wasn't too bad as just a trip to the park or something would make it easier. But now it's cold and horrible there's not much we can do. I've just got all my dcs xmas presents so I'm short on money to do things anyway.
The 3 younger ones are happy just to play, go for walks etc. But for the teenager it's just not enough. I think before I met dp, he used to take her different places every weekend and that's why she still expects it. Where as my kids have never really had that. I've never had the money to be able to treat them all the time
Your OP is notable for the detail it gives about him and his dc while giving little information about your own dc.
However, from your second post, I'd hazard a guess that your 4yo is struggling with being supplanted as the 'baby' of the family when his toddler comes to stay and it doesn't seem surprising that both of your dc "absolutely love my mums house, they would rather live there than with me lol".
Of course it may simply be that your mum spoils them rotten and they get away with murder when they're with her, but the possible/probable effect his bad temper/bad mood/lack of patience/raised voice has on them may be making them even more keen to spend time at her home.
Your dc may dread weekends and it could be they're fearful that he may start turning on them during the allegedly harmonious weekdays when, he's an apparently model parent.... or is he a 'model parent' because he can be, and is, hands off with them?
If I were you I'd be talking to my dc, as in encouraging them to express their feelings and listening to them, before talking to him but, in any event, you'd be ill-advised to consider moving to a larger property or having another dc with him until he has learned how to parent.
I suggest you give consideration to structuring weekends so that he spends regular periods of time alone with his dc and yours get the one-to one quality time with you that they currently may be denied while you're so loved up with him during the week.
I also suggest that you tell him to enrol on a parenting course. If work commitments leave him little time to attend in person, he can source a course online.
I do understand everyone's point of my dc, this is the reason I started this thread as I don't want my children around it and will not tolerate anymore of it. This is why we are it make or break time. I always do ask my dc if they've had a good weekend and they always reply with yes. They hate it when dps kids go home, my dd always cries as she doesn't want them to leave. I feel that says something positive even if the atmosphere has been a bit shit. I don't think they really pick up on it at the moment if I'm honest but I know they will do in time.
Anyway just heard from dp, he's got to work late and has had a shit day as he didn't get the job finished. Not exactly what I wanted to hear due to the things we need to discuss tonight but will see how it goes
I think Goddess makes good point albeit a bit blunt.
He's already affecting you OP so you can take it as read your kids are suffering him also, they won't tell you that, of course they won't.
Fact is you have wised up to this instantly, hence the talk, I hope he can give you what you need, I really do.
I can see her point too, don't get me wrong. I just don't like how she's saying the reason my kids love my mums house is because of my dp. It really is not. To be honest, my dcs love my dp. I find it all very strange because on paper we are very lucky. We both have amazing children who we love very much. Our children get on brilliantly considering they are not proper siblings. Me and dp also have an amazing relationship, very close and extremely committed to each other.
It just feels like we can't win. If we are apart at the weekends, dp thinks I'm avoiding his kids and if we are together he finds it all too much. I'm sort of wondering if there's more to it than he's making out as none of it really makes sense. Anyway I do appreciate these comments. I'm pretty drained as I haven't slept at all for the last 2 nights and both dcs are ill at the min too. Don't feel like going anywhere but robbed and sleep but I've made an effort to look nice tonight all the same z
I think you are very concerned about his affect on the children and it's good you are having the talk, I hope you get somewhere with it.
Just remember he is causing this OP, not you, not the kids, him and unless he actually can see he has an issue then nothing will change really, it's a bit worrying that he can't cope with two children, one young and one pretty self sufficient without going into meltdown, imagine if he was a full time parent, he's actually got it pretty easy.
I can only call it as I see it, confused, and it certainly wasn't my intention to cause offence.
Fwiw, your dc are blessed in having a dgm that they adore, and who adores them, and in having her live in such close proximity to your home. You, of course, are fortunate in having such a supportive and loving dm - a look around this board will show how lucky you are to have her.
I'm glad you've said that "I don't want my children around it and will not tolerate anymore of it" as your earlier posts gave me the impression that, in extolling his virtues as a lover, you were in danger of letting your heart rule your head.
With apologies for any unwitting offence I may have caused.
Oh no, I know not to tolerate it for sure. I've been on Mumsnet a few times before and seen a fair few posts from women coming on here asking if their partners anger is right and they've been putting up with it for years. I know it's not right, I'm not coming on here to ask wether to stay in the relationship or not as I know if this cannot be sorted then we are at the end, there's no point in going any further. My ex - dcs dad - didn't treat me well at all, I was with him for 9 years. I won't let the same mistake happen again. It's only really been the last 3 months or so this has been happening and it's got gradually worse as each weekend comes and goes.
Not last week, the week before we had the best week, we were so loved up and happy. I got a bouquet of flowers sent to me, he rang me at work to listen to a romantic song that was on the radio, he is just so lovely when he's like that. Then the weekend came, the teenager gave him abit of attitude about something and then that was it. I spent most of the weekend trying not to cry :-(
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.