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Leaving because of the kids?(25 Posts)
Is it wise to leave an amazing man because he has young children? (That visit him every other weekend)
I've been with him just over a year, I've recently met them and I can see this will be harder than I ever imagined. I've never been with someone with children before... but he is Amazing. With a capital A.
I'm 27 with no children
I don't know what you mean by 'wise.' It's totally possible to have a great relationship with a man who has kids but if you don't want a relationship with him then walk away
It's not really a case of whether it's wise, but whether it's something you can deal or cope with.
It's not a choice I would have made at your age. You're young enough to find a man without the baggage of children IMO.
They're a package and for him they will come first. And that is the right way for him to be. If you can't deal with that then you need to do the decent thing and walk away.
What are you finding hard about it? How old are they?
Do you not like him spending time with them? Are they badly behaved? If it's the former and you just don't want to share him with his DC then leave him, it's not fair on any of you and of course his DC will come first. If it's the latter then remember they may find the idea of their dad having a new girlfriend difficult at first. They may act out for attention, they may not warm to you straightaway. These things take time.
It's really difficult. I did it, but quite badly, I now see.
With the benefit of hindsight, I would say just accept that they will come first and that will never change. It's the right thing, but is quite difficult.
Holidays will be spent doing child friendly stuff,and social occasions will be missed because of contact weekends, ferrying to sports , parties and so on.
Be kind and generous and non judgey in your dealings with them. Other people's children are easy to moan and bitch about, but remember they are children and none of this is their fault.
It might also be useful, if you do move forward, to discuss your role with the children. I always felt caught between a rock and a hard place as I felt I ended up with the life changing stuff, but with any views I had being ignored as my husband just wanted the dc to be happy.
Like I say though, looking back I was a bit of a bitch, really, at times. I really regret it. In my partial defence, I had a weird childhood myself, and was a career focussed person with absolutely no experience at all of children!
At 27 I think you need to walk away.
As a PP says, you are young enough to find a man without the 'baggage' of DC.
How old is he?
How old are the DC?
It's up to you. I wouldn't do it, I'd have no interest in being a stepmother.
If I were you at your age with no DC then yes, I would leave. Young DC bring their own challenges but I've actually found being a step parent much harder as the DC have got older and hit their teen years etc. (I also have no DC of my own). It also depends very much on your DP's parenting style, and what the dynamics are with the DC's mum. My husband is also amazing, a truly lovely man, but I struggle every day with our family set-up and am always on the verge of leaving
Might be worth reading up on the subject, I can recommend How to be a happy stepmum by Lisa Doodson and Stepmonster by Wednesday Martin.
This struck a chord with me. I was 26 when I married my husband, He had 2 children 18 months and 3 years. They came and stayed every other weekend....up to that time I had never been within 20 yards of a child. Its a learning curve,and sometimes very frustrating. A couple of years later we added to our family,and the four of them are very close. Sadly last year I lost my husband ,but all 4 of 'our children' have been amazing. I love them and the grandchildren as if they were my own. I must add that there was always a good relationship with his ex (and I was nothing to do with their break up) We have holidayed together often...full show of hands at family weddings. When my step daughter married,both my husband and her step father walked her down the aisle.I realise that this is the exception rather than the rule....but it can work. You have to remember that you are not their mother..hopefully they have a perfectly adequate one of their own. Fairness in all things,and interest in all they do. Knock the ' Disney Dad' scenario on the head ASAP. You have to try and live a normal life...they aren't 'special snowflakes'and you will rue the day you treat them as such. I have had the most positive experience,and I would urge you not to back off. The main thing is that you and your partner have to be on the same page. ' I am taking 'my lot' on a holiday this summer in memory of their father. We can't wait !
Give it a go...you'll always wonder !
its personal choice.
if you are in a comitted relationship with someone who has children then you have to understand that the children are not an add-on, not an optional extra. you have to understand that they are very important and a high priority. have to treat them well. etc. have to understand that he pays money and not resent that. cant expect him to do less for them. and so on and so forth.
if you feel that having a partner with children isnt going to work for you - for whatever reason - then its right to end it.
what you cant do is stay with him and make demands that disadvantage his children.
so really it depends why you are struggling with this and what you want him to do.
There is no right or wrong here, it's all about how you are feeling. I would never date anyone without children because they generally don't understand what it's like to be a parent & will never be my number 1 priority. Go with your gut instinct. Children are baggage, however nicely people try to badge it up, if it's not for you, walk
Personally I'd prefer a man with no baggage at your age.
At your age I'd run a mile. Why take on the hassle and inconvenience of someone else's children.
I did it, at an age even younger than you, for ten years. it was v hard.
I've dated a lot of guys with kids, I would MUCH prefer them to be child free like me (I'm 42). My current DP doesn't have kids and doesn't want them, life is so much easier and fun. I realise how many complications being with someone with kids brings now I'm in a no kids relationship. I'd even go as far now to say if this relationship doesn't work out, I'd rather be single than date someone with kids again.
Amazing feedback; thank you.
Children are 5 and 8. He is 34.
I think I know in my heart what I need to do....
I wouldn't do it either. I didn't have a clue about what being a parent was like until I became one and I have always worked with children.
Just to add, I dated a man with DC when I was 18. He was 23 and his DS was 5. Ultimately it was not something I wanted to take on back then and I ended it. Now I have a DS of my own I would only consider a relationship with a man who already has DC and who understands parenthood.
I'm exactly the same as Tempus. It is certainly not for the faint hearted. I've been on ADs for years due to the stress and it has brought me to me knees on many an occasion. Beware, it's not only the DC that you take on, you get the ex and their family thinking they have a say in your life too. If, however, you do decide to stay don't make the same mistake as me, make sure you are financially independent so you can leave if needs be. If I had my time again it's certainly not something I would repeat and is something I will actively discourage my children from ever doing.
There is one advantage though, if you would like a family of your own -- at least "you already know" he is a good father and good with kids and able to father them . Something that you dont know with a childless guy! . Its a very individual thing but personally I think it would be a shame to give up a good relationship because of this but I guess it depends how "hands on" he is, how often you have them etc and what you feel you can cope with .
I think if your doubts are such that you came to MN then it's right to move on.
As a former step mum I would echo others feedback.It is much harder step parenting than parenting.I don't believe his dad attributes are actually accurate to children living with him all the time.Non resident dad's often become Disney dad's when they weren't like this before.
I had doubts but dismissed them however and wish I had walked.You are attaching yourself to the ex, her family and all the history.
In our situation the ex remarried multiple times, it caused a roller coaster that I could never have imagined.
I really believe your instincts are telling you something..sometimes it's fuzzy not tangible (as in my case) so I ignored it as being too sensitive and was super optimistic.I should not have done so..I recall the uneasiness I felt and know it was instincts.
My then partner appeared wonderful and supportive but I really didn't know him within a year.
I tried a guy with kids, hardest thing I did, I made a promise I wouldn't do it again....then I fell pregnant with my now EX
I'm not gunna tell you to leave him. I think that should be a decision only you can make. I know how hard it is when you love someone.
I personally am not ready for my own kids so I couldn't date somebody who already had their own. It wouldn't be fair on me, him or the kids.
Thank you all.... some great views , just what I was looking for.
I think it's confirmed my decision!
Judging from the step-parenting boards on here, I know I couldn't do it. It's rarely straightforward, potential for so much resentment on all sides and lots of heartache. Frequently, there's no thanks or recognition of the work a step-parent does - they do a lot of the grunt work with no thanks from the children or the parent, and get it all thrown back in their face. But the decision is one only you can make.
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