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Secretly dislike DP's ex wife situation

(141 Posts)
PookieDo Mon 17-Apr-17 18:11:56

I'm not sure if this is my problem or a DP problem. I try so hard not to judge or dislike the ex as I am one myself, and I only have one side of the story. I read threads on here regularly and see this is a frequent issue. I completely bite my tongue around him and do not say anything negative about her to him when he talks to me about it. AIBU or none of my business?

Background is they have DC and she ended their relationship. Apparently he was absolutely devastated about it and shocked but he seems to have come to terms about it now and says he didn't realise he wasn't happy but is happy now. She very quickly got with a new man who has DC with him full time and IMO they are as good as living together - 80% of the week. All DC refer to each other as siblings and share bedrooms. Officially she is a single mother and complains a lot about being poor. She asks DP for money all the time for the basics saying she has no money, he pays well over the basic rate of maintenance at his agreement. He has the kids 2-3 days/nights a week too. He's a good good dad and the kids are lovely.

DP is still on the mortgage but she wants him to pay half the mortgage per month - despite new DP living there Most of the week. DP is trying to get off mortgage but she has to buy him out. She has no money so this is unlikely. He cannot pay all the maintenance and half the mortgage and his own rent but is trying to manage it all.

Here is the biggest but: he's just too nice and never says no to anything. I really feel that she is thoughtless and selfish and takes the total piss out of him because he is nice and easy to take advantage of. he feels guilty about the kids. I imagine her new DP can't contribute as he is paying living costs for a house he doesn't live in (maybe once a week). DP seems to feel like she wants the benefits of his salary to raise her children and run the household but without being married to him. Or getting a job that has a better salary. She can't move Her DP in officially without being forced by the terms of the divorce to sell it or buy him out, so it's a kind of circumnavigation of the rules. They are a 3 income family almost!

I can't see a point where we can ever live together because he's stuck on a mortgage, still subsidising her above the over the odds maintenance AND trying to look after the kids for the other 3 days of the week he has them. I have kids myself and just can't see at what point we have any future if it's like this. It feels like he is still married to her in many respects. It's very messy and makes me feel wary about getting more involved and will there be an end to it?

Lelloteddy Mon 17-Apr-17 18:26:45

How long since they split?

PookieDo Mon 17-Apr-17 18:38:01

About 2 years

I don't earn a giant salary myself but from the sounds of it I earn double what his ex does, I am working hard to try move up the career ladder myself so that I can bring a bigger portion to the situation - or my own situation without him....My partner knows this. I feel like in the future it would be unbalanced as he earns 3 times more than me and I can't expect him to support me, my kids and his own and his ex wife. Obviously currently I support myself with basic maintence from my ex. I do not take anything from DP as I have no need to. I try not to think too far ahead as things can change I just feel like it's hard to see a future with a house/mortgage etc, so is it likely we will live apart for a long time or rent forever? I don't know I think it's just frustrating

Lotalota Mon 17-Apr-17 19:38:01

I think all you can do is decide whether or not you are happy with a relationship that can't move forward for an indefinite amount of time or not This is a messy situation and it must be frustrating for you as it affects your life in a big way but you have no control over it.

PookieDo Mon 17-Apr-17 20:34:04

I'm not happy about it but I don't want to break up with him I love him. I think I have to accept this is the way it is in that case but I don't think I can do that long term it won't make me happy. I don't know if I should talk to him about it part of it feels like it's not really any of my business because I am on the outside looking in but it's like we will be stuck. He's always telling me that's what he loves about me that I accept him the way he is and I'm easy going about his situation but more and more I am not feeling easy going, I feel resentful because they aren't married anymore but feels like I am some woman on the side of their marriage, but he seems like he feels trapped by her so I don't want to pressure him more. I know he doesn't have any feelings for her except guilt for the kids.

PookieDo Mon 17-Apr-17 20:39:18

I feel like she has moved on, and doesn't want him anymore, has a new man for sex but still needs him for a supportive husband, but he is stuck and can't really move on with me.

SandyY2K Mon 17-Apr-17 20:48:34

I agree that ultimately you have to decide whether you can cope with it.

If it was for 2 more years, then maybe... But it doesn't sound like it will end anytime soon.

I see how you feel on the sidelines, but unless he cuts back maintenance to what he legally should pay, she won't be in a hurry to end this arrangement. It her suits her down to the ground. Your DP doesn't say anything or be firmer, because it's not affecting him to the point where he doesn't have a romantic life.

Many and most women wouldn't put up with it, but he's found a woman who will in you, so that's it.

If he found his situation put women off, he'd probably do something about it.

CMamaof4 Mon 17-Apr-17 20:49:14

It sounds like a really shitty situation.
You really should talk to him about how you feel, You're only human you are allowed to have feelings on this matter as its effecting your relationship from progressing.
He sounds like a lovely man I'm sure he will understand.

Whateverisnext456 Mon 17-Apr-17 21:07:33

I would run away as fast as you can. For as long as he lets her she will walk all over him and take absolutely everything from him and more. I'm 10 years into my relationship and can't stand his ExW, she works very part time hours, he remains on the mortgage, pays a crazy amount of maintenance, always wants more, has moved in her new bloke who doesn't at any rent or anything towards the bills, they are always out and just returned from another holiday. Yes you love him but you deserve so much more. If you don't like what's unfortunately happening to him now sadly it will continue

PookieDo Mon 17-Apr-17 21:18:30

If she didn't have a DP I would really feel sorry for her and get it. I would also understand why my DP feels a bit obliged to help her stay on her feet. But she has a DP who unofficially lives with her and they have 2 incomes and a good % of my DP's. They are both utterly taking the fucking piss out of him and it makes me feel angry. It's not just about mine and his relationship I hate the way they think this is acceptable to take DP's money in this way and leave him short. I'm annoyed with him for putting up with it this long and wonder if he has no backbone!

I think whenever he tries to scale it back she gets on his case and rolls out sob stories. She also uses the kids to press home her financial hardship and regularly they tell me/him about how mum has no money and it makes him feel horrible. He's trying to be nice which is a lovely attribute. No way would I even consider moving in with him unless he cut these ties but I don't know at what point to bring this up, we can't have a moving in conversation because of all this so 'the future' is just something very vague

KarmaNoMore Mon 17-Apr-17 21:25:09

She could get a better job? Don't we all???

She can't buy him out? what is the alternative? Yep selling the house. But is this going to sort the problem or make the matters worse?

Yes there is her new partner but they don't live together (spending nights together do not equate to living together). He is not the dad and he won't be expected to pay the expenses to house your partner's children.

Her needs are minimal, if she is working she can surely at least rent a room in a shared house and get on with her life as if nothing has happened, same goes for your partner but if they are working TOGETHER on this it is for the sake of THEIR children.

I would say that if that bothers you, it is better for you to move on and find someone with lesser commitments. This will be going on for years.

Darbs76 Mon 17-Apr-17 21:27:10

They are taking the piss. Big time. I assume her partner doesn't live there so she can claim benefits as a single parent? Why doesn't he tell her in writing he can no longer continue to pay the mortgage and rent on his own place plus maintenance and give a date this will take place. If her partner moved in maybe they could buy our your partner but she wants her cake and eat it. How can he ever move on if he's going to pay all this out until children are 18? Does he have a custody / access agreement? Is he afraid is he announces he's stopping paying mortgage she will stop him seeing the kids? Maybe he needs to get some financial advice over the mortgage issue, might not be cheap an hour with a solicitor but might save him money in the long run.

MrsHenryWales Mon 17-Apr-17 21:35:06

I would normally say it's not your place to get involved BUT here you have someone you care about being taken for a ride.

He shouldn't be paying her more than has been agreed. It is not up to him to fund his ex's lifestyle. If the kids need new coats/shoes/whatever and he's worried about them missing out he can take them shopping for the coats/shoes/whatever himself rather than hand her the money.

As for the mortgage, he needs to get some professional advice on that.

This all aside, if possible I'd say he needs to seriously consider going for joint custody and not paying her any maintenance at all. Every other 3-night weekend plus 2 week days for example.

She's a cheeky cow.

PookieDo Mon 17-Apr-17 21:51:45

Karma, it's not much stretch of the imagination for anyone to work out that this is a perfect situation: they live together but have an official way around the legalities of the divorce. Her DP has his own money that he earns, and she has her ex husbands financial support, and they live in a house still owned by someone who cannot live there and cannot get the equity out. He won't force her to do anything that will affect the kids in a negative way, hence it just rolling on and on... yet she cannot afford to live on what she has/he provides so unless he gives her more... what is her alternative? The one option she has, which I have too is to earn more of you own money, is that not logical? (I.e. Not rely on any of the men...)

Kennethwasmyfriend Mon 17-Apr-17 21:55:10

WHile this situation seems extreme, I don't think I'd be cheering on any parent who decided to pay the absolute legal minimum for their dcs as some posters on here are suggesting.

PookieDo Mon 17-Apr-17 22:00:37

He does just buy things when they need them like coats, but this is him buying/doing everything they need because they get little from mother because she says she has nothing. He seems to spend most of his time worrying about this. I don't want to be too outing but he subsidised a few things quite expensive of late on the agreement they would go halves and she then reneged on it claiming she couldn't contribute and didn't even attempt to make any effort to contribute, not even a fiver.

She just doesn't care about how DP feels anymore. She isn't even apologetic asking for things or demanding them, or outright misleads him like the expenses she has no intention of contributing to. Or she will get the kids to ask for it.

PookieDo Mon 17-Apr-17 22:03:01

My ex pays minimum and I agree - it's lovely he pays more than the minimum and partly why I love him as he is so kind and generous.

It's the stuck in the mortgage, him having no financial freedom of his own and coercing money out of him I don't like.

KarmaNoMore Mon 17-Apr-17 22:07:14

Yes, and so does your partner. Honestly, I agree this shouldn't be like that but if you expect that the new partner will take over the expense of housing the children if your partner removes his support you are going to be disappointed.

I think you all are caught in catch 23. You can't move on with your life because he is supporting the kids, she cannot move on with her life because her kids need that financial support (yes, it is the kids, most single mums will tell you that maintenance is used mostly to pay housing costs, it is not money to be spent completely on shoes and toys).

You can always report her for benefit fraud (if she is indeed doing benefit fraud) but I think that will put more pressure on your partner.

I know two women who were in a very similar situation as yours. One was dumped by her partner for not understanding he needed to provide for his DD which included helping his ex to keep the boat afloat. The other one is still happy with him but his children refuse to see their dad ever since the house was put on sale. He got what he wanted but everybody says he is a broken man. So there is also the emotional cost to consider.

Bluntness100 Mon 17-Apr-17 22:12:01

The thing is op, it's his decision, his money his call. He doesn't want to force them to move fair enough snd the new partner also has his own family and you don't know his financial situation he should not be paying for your partners kids and although he stays there half the week he doesn't live there and is manintaining his own place.

This is what divorce with kids looks like for many, if you don't like it then you need to find a man who has no kids or one who pays the min.

I don't understand why you think he should support you though? He's not asking you to support him. This is his life, his financial situation, either accept or move on.

PookieDo Mon 17-Apr-17 22:21:26

Karma. I am a single mum. I've been one for many years longer than her. A real one. IMO She isn't a single mother, only technically. DP cannot give her more than he is, despite all the toys and shoes and housing costs there is a finite pot of money to be shared.

Something has to give, and he's discussed with her the possible scenarios:
Her DP must take over the mortgage and buy her out
She sells house and rents
She needs to up her own income

But the onus is all on DP to put in and be the one to run 2 households and is the one with the main financial responsibility. While he carries that burden I can't do anything to help or change anything, she's not doing anything to make it better and nor is her DP. The more I talk about this the more hopeless it just feels on the future front really. Unless someone wins the lottery it seems like a trap that they are all stuck in. I just don't see why it's all on my DP... because he's a man?

Pauletyea Mon 17-Apr-17 22:22:18

Have a look at the step parents thread.

Really, I mean this kindly but you should simply walk from the relationship.

There are some people who can make peace with working to financially support and subsidise other people's children, and others who don't.

You're in the latter category. Neither is right or wrong, but there is a good reason why a lot of childfree people won't seriously date those with children. And it NEVER will stop.

. I casually dated some lovely older men with teeange/uni age children, and although they were very keen for "us" to couple up and work as a team, it would be like TEAM = me being expected to contribute far more than I was willing to give in terms of time, cash, and energy, and goodwill.

They kind of tried to mislead me a bit by implying that it was an ex wife problem and that the children would "soon be grown" ( in fact, my theory is a lot of men with children really lay the affection on thick because they want to "trap" women into taking on their drama)

but really, I think they deep down were hoping I'd just take to THEIR children so much that I'd end up wanting to work to subsidise them. Hell to the no! confused

Because the default social position is that "children come first". I had some good dating memories but wasn't prepared to scrimp and save myself so The Children (of my boyfriend and other woman) could have X, Y, and Z .

PookieDo Mon 17-Apr-17 22:26:07

I do not want my DP to support me - the future I would like is a mortgage together, with joint money. But if half his income is gone to his ex and he's stuck in a mortgage we likely can't do that. I am furthering my career with extra study while I work to try to make a better life for myself and my kids, ideally I would like us to have the opportunity to do that together. My kids live with me full time so he would be contributing to their household and we would have to house his children too, so a big joint effort.

I know about divorce, it's just this looks like it has no real end to it

KarmaNoMore Mon 17-Apr-17 22:27:53

What is a real single mum? I'm surprised you are taking on this upmanship if you have been where she is.

I think you need to walk away, because this is not going to change without much heartache (and time)

PookieDo Mon 17-Apr-17 22:33:59

I think she makes some bad choices and is immature, has walked away from her marriage but wants to hold on to his best attributes, and she's got herself stuck in a situation she can't seem to get out of. I made the single mum comment as she has 2 men physically and financially supporting her raise her children. I haven't been where she is because I did it on my own. It's really hard to relate to her on any levels.

Dozer Mon 17-Apr-17 22:36:35

You don't like how your boyfriend is managing his financial relationship with his ex and DC, but at present you say it's not a deal breaker for you. You could, however, tell him you're unhappy about the situation.

If her new bf and his DC are de facto living together then the terms of the divorce mean that the house should be bought out or sold. Your Bf could seek to enforce this. If she's claiming benefits it could also be benefit fraud . But that's really your bf's business, not really yours.

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