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Terrified of introducing new man to family !!! Need a hand hold(55 Posts)
I am so sorry for the length of this, I really appreciate anyone who takes the time to read this. I would just appreciate some friendly words right now and a bit of support. I will try and explain as briefly as I can.
I have met this amazing man back in December last year. So far, we have spent the odd weekend together, stayed at each other’s places as often as we could. He lives 60 miles away from myself so it’s difficult to spend time during the week.
Been on some amazing dates. Both agreed to take it slow though, he is a divorcee with 2 lovely kids, a son and daughter (teens), and I came out of a long term relationship last Summer (2019).
The last time I actually spent proper time with him, was actually back in March- because of COVID-19 we haven’t been able to stay at each other’s houses or actually meet unless at a distance
We are still in the early days, because of the lockdown since March, it has put us back in terms of introducing each other to our families…
Bit of background, I am 31, there is a 16 year age gap between us. At the moment, this doesn’t bother us. We get on great and have very similar interests. I have simply never felt this happy before with someone else in a long time. I understand this is not everyone’s cup of tea but you cannot help who you fall for right?
My family are aware I am dating this man, we are connected on social media, he is friends with a few of my family members on Facebook.
My Mum made one rude comment about his appearance after clicking on his profile (that is just from photos… I was very upset by this and I am not able to react because I am then accused of being very ‘defensive’ of him)
For example, she looked at a photo of him and said to me- “Are you serious?” I was deeply hurt by this and cannot even explain how this made me feel. I sort of felt damage was done then, how could I bring him home after that?
He is not the usual ‘neat’ type of man I go for, he is not my usual type. But he makes me happy and surely that is enough?
I have quite simply gone for how this man makes me feel… I clearly fancy him too, otherwise I wouldn’t be with him… I am at a point in my life where happiness is what I am looking for and security- which new man offers me and he is also very protective of me which I have never had before in relationships. Without even asking.
My new man, take this how you will, has a history of alcohol abuse, drugs and smoking. He is now t-total and has stopped smoking with serious help but as you can imagine it has taken a slight toll on his looks. He is quite skinny at the moment and is looking at new diets to put weight on. He does not earn a massive amount of money as he is having to support his daughter and son which I understand. He is not in designer clothes and shiny watches. He dresses as well as he can.
He does not have a car at the moment as his ex-wife has this as it is needed for the kids. He is currently saving up for one. He has never asked anyone for anything his whole life and worked hard for everything he has ever owned.
He has a job where he is a skilled worker and works 6 days a week, he is such a hard worker but that gets overlooked by a lot of people.
My family were very ‘comfortable’ shall we say with my ex-partner who I was with for 12 years… my Mum loved him like a son shall we say so clearly my new man has some ‘big boots’ to fill.
To be honest, this whole situation has made me feel extremely sad and so, so gutted. The thought of bringing this man home to meet my family just terrifies me…. Its not just been one occasion where a nasty comment has been said, there have been a few other times. I am very close with my family so this is really going to hit me like a ton of bricks.
Do I just bite the bullet? What if I am told they don’t like him…
I hope this all makes sense.
Thank you so much to everyone who took the time to read this. I would welcome any views xx
If I had all the information you've shared there and was your mum or sister then I would have a few concerns that I think are legitimate and come from a place of caring.
I wouldn't pull a face and say "are you serious" as that's unkind but based on the information you've shared I think there are some valid concerns.
That's not to say it won't work, some people overcome lots of the things i would be worried about making it a potentially unhealthy dynamic. But plenty wouldn't overcome them.
Bottom line is it's your life and they of course shouldn't say nasty things.
I personally wouldn't be introducing someone to my family if I had only dated them properly for only three or four months then had a couple of months not seeing them in person.
That seems a little foolish as you really don't know what a relatively new relationship will be like until you settle back into it and see each other for a while regularly again, whats the rush?
@backseatcookers I am not planning on introducing for at least a towards the end of the year. I really wanted to spend some more time together before anything... you are right though and thank you for your response.
I'd be very wary of my daughter getting involved with this guy. I'm sorry but I wouldn't think she was going to have a happy life with him, once the initial attraction had died down.
He has never asked anyone for anything his whole life and worked hard for everything he has ever owned
This doesn't tie in with drug and alcohol abuse, nor with heavy smoking. He's in a low paid job - I'm sure if you spoke to his ex you'd find he prioritised himself for years.
@HollowTalk I think that's the issue... perhaps I need to follow my head in this one but I can't. This is very difficult.
It's not difficult. You are not seeing this guy clearly.
Do you trust your mum to know what's best for you?
Think of having a daughter and her bringing home a guy like this, after you've seen her with someone far more likely to make her happy. Would you encourage it? Is that what you want for your own daughter?
I think that's the issue... perhaps I need to follow my head in this one but I can't.
Is your head instinctively saying you should be cautious or even stop this before it goes any further? If so, listen to your head.
And saying you should do so but you "can't" makes me worry you aren't ready for a new relationship. I don't mean to sound negative but I say that because you're 31 and clearly an intelligent and thoughtful woman - you need to be able to do difficult things like stopping seeing someone even if you like some things about them.
Something I forgot to say, too - do you want to have a child at some point? I think that's a very important factor which would inform how sensible this is and how long to leave it.
@HollowTalk it's quite difficult when emotions are involved. We are not all perfect.
I would not be overjoyed if my daughter brought a man home like this no, however if he made her happy I'd have to overlook this.
I would like to see how the next few months go. I am not sure what else to do
perhaps I need to follow my head in this one but I can't
You really can.
"Play the movie to the end" is a saying I heard on here and wish I'd heard earlier in life. What are the consequences of staying with this man?
- your family won't accept him - this is actually a minor problem
- he's very very likely to go back to abusing drugs, alcohol and tobacco
- your money will become his money - that's a cert
- you will find yourself absolutely broke
- he's already got two children that he hasn't prioritised - if you have children with him, then what makes you think your children would be treated differently?
- he's WAY too old for you
- you're 60 miles away from him which means whenever you see him it's like a nice date - that's very, very different to seeing him every day when he isn't at his best
- why on earth would you knowingly get involved with someone with addiction problems?
I am at a point in my life where happiness is what I am looking for and security- which new man offers me and he is also very protective of me which I have never had before in relationships. Without even asking.
Sorry another thing - someone being "very protective" of you early on, "without even asking" ie uninvited is not a positive.
At best he thinks you aren't self sufficient and independent. At worst he is the type to say you should do things he suggests because he wants the best for you when they are actually best for him. So a certain friend is called a bad influence, you shouldn't speak to men in case they get the wrong idea... etc.
This does all feel as if it has the potential to be a bit "us against the world" due to some of the concerns people will have about it, which unfortunately is a recipe for codependency and unhealthy dynamic.
Wise move to wait introducing him, because of the covid and long distance, you haven't really got to know the real him just yet.
When you talk of a past of alcohol, drugs that sets alarm bells ringing, low paid job, no car and miles away does seem like you are setting yourself back, I know when you find someone attractive it's hard to see what is really is but he really don't sound much of a catch and I think you know your family will either. Sorry to sound harsh but the warning signs were jumping out at me.
The problem is that if we say anything about him then you'll want to defend him, because you like him.
The thing is though that it's absolutely vital that the man you choose to be with in your thirties is the right man.
Presumably you'll want to buy a home and have children sometime. You have to be so careful to do both those things with the right person.
My new man, take this how you will, has a history of alcohol abuse, drugs and smoking.
Oh, op. This is very alarming. What's even more alarming is that you claim to be head over heels for this man yet you barely even know him. Met in December, lives 60 miles away, and only see each other on the odd weekend. You only know what's he's told you, and that doesn't mean it's the truth. Anyone can pull off acting like Mr. Wonderful on the odd weekend. You claim he can offer you security? Really? He's an addict, too skint to own a car, even though "he is such a hard worker but that gets overlooked by a lot of people." Again, you only "know" this because this is what he tells you. I would be willing to bet those who know him have quite a different take on the matter.
Your family should be extremely worried if they know his background, and you should be putting the brakes on. Hard.
If at the age of 31 you still think that because he makes you happy that's going to be enough after listing all those alarm bells .... well good luck to you
Where's the security?
On a Pros and Cons list I would have thought the Cons side would be longer.
I'm afraid that I think you're being very naive.
I've been in a similar position, with a similar age gap.
Alcoholics, drug addictions remain forever.
You are only seeing what you want to see and what he wants to show you.
If I were your family I'd be wary and worried too.
@fabulous40s it is when you've been miserable for years.
Thanks for all your comments I've read each and every one.
Stay with this man and you will really find out how miserable life can get. Why would you sabotage your future for a man with so many red flags? Raise your standards and stop thinking you can be the one to "save" him.
I have simply never felt this happy before with someone else in a long time.
Think about this OP - in your entire adult life you were with your ex for 12 years so you only know him, being single / dating for 6 months and this guy. You have barely anything to compare it to. Meeting someone just 6 months after a 12 year relationship spanning your entire adult life is so, so soon. Can you see that?
He has never asked anyone for anything his whole life and worked hard for everything he has ever owned.
he is such a hard worker but that gets overlooked by a lot of people.
You cannot know these things unless he has specifically told you them. In which case he is already setting up a narrative of him being one of life's victims and you owing him the benefit of the doubt. I would guess he's said stuff along the lines of "I'm too nice for my own good" and "I should have left my ex wife but I really wanted to make it work for the children so I put them first". Is that the type of self image you can recognise in him?
I'm only two years older than you and (thanks to some shitty relationships and plenty of dating in my 20s) I found your post extremely alarming on first reading and have found it more and more so as I've re-read it (hence me being annoying and writing more posts!) you sound very naive when it comes to relationships.
On reflection, this guy sounds like bad news. Very much so.
Life is too hard to borrow trouble. I'm with your Mum.
If you are 31 - why are you even introducing him to your family ? You don’t have to as you’re an adult and not obligated to your families approval ?
Have you met his children? Do you really want to be a stepmum to two teens?
If he works 6 days a week how often does he see them?
Why when he’s working in a skilled role, 6 days a week, can he not afford a cheap runaround car?
I dont know if my opinion will matter as I'm a guy but I say this out of kindness.....as others have said, some of the things you have put in your post would ring alarm bells.
You only met in December so for around half the time you've known him you havent spent much time together. You are still in the honeymoon stage of the relationship so its only natural to feel that way. Unfortunately you haven't spent a lot of time with him to really know what he is like.
The thing that really alarms me is the drug and alcohol use / abuse in the past. People can change and im sure he is T'total now but he could spiral again and that is something very hard to deal with. Subjecting your kids to that risk is of a concern. Fair enough he may never relapse but you have to put your kids first and tbat risk would be too great.
He doesnt sound like a catch OP. I really urge you to take a step back and really evaluate what you want from a relationship and whether he can really give you that. Try and detach emotion from it all. Not easy I know but its important to not get caught up in the whirlwind of it all when you hardly know him. I've fallen hard for someone in the past and been disappointed and heart broken when the reality isn't what I thought it was. I would hate to see it happen to someone else.
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