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Staying apart in lockdown, has probably ended a 2 year relationship. Anyone else?

(39 Posts)
Movinghouse2015 Sat 13-Jun-20 08:16:13

I've been in a relationship for two years. For the last twelve months it was progressing well, we discussed a future together.

Start of lockdown we made the decision to remain in on own homes. We both have responsibilities and it felt the right thing to do (also our only option if I'm honest.

My family situation - 2DC, 17 & 20. I'm working full time in a stressful role, 17 yr old studying A levels (year 12), 20 yr old home from uni. We live in a standard three bed, one bathroom semi, so not loads of space, but enough for us. My 20 yr old has a life long medical condition that puts them in the vulnerable category, so we have observed lockdown rules.

DP - over ten years ago and following divorce he moved back with his mum. She has numerous health conditions and was working in a low paid, low skilled job. She would have struggled to clear/pay her mortgage. DP made the decision to buy the family home (mum was given back what equity was in the house, which was not much). With the promise he would keep her housed. He had a relationship during the ten years before we met, he moved out with new partner, but returned when the relationship ended. His mums health is not great, she has not left the house during this period.

The latest bubble does not apply to us as a couple. Until the last few weeks I'd say we managed to maintain a positive virtual relationship. We have met for walks when the weather has been good (and it was allowed) and he has come and sat in my garden twice since 1st June.

I guess as this goes on, I see no end. Also, his mum (who is loving lockdown) is becoming more and more dependent on my DP. She is 71, but I wouldn't be surprised if she never left the house again. Her mum was the same and suffered similar anxieties.

Not really sure what I'm asking. But I feel myself distancing myself from DP. He has been lovely through lockdown, sent cards and thoughtful gifts. I asked if we could bubble, given neither household has mixed with others. He has refused and wants to wait until it's formally allowed. I've argued my 17yr old will be returning to school, so risks will be higher then!!

I feel so bloody low at the moment, work is awful and not having adult support (friends or partner) has been difficult. But I think the biggest problem is that I feel rejected, then I feel needy. I've been independent since my divorce, so know I can manage alone.

I think me wanting to create a bubble and his reluctance to break any rules will ultimately end our relationship.

I guess I'm asking, am I being unreasonable?

OP’s posts: |
blubberball Sat 13-Jun-20 08:23:09

You're not being unreasonable at all. I think sometimes situations like this just highlight the truths and any issues that were there previously any way. You don't have to continue if you don't want to.

Movinghouse2015 Sat 13-Jun-20 08:27:12

Blubberball

OP’s posts: |
Movinghouse2015 Sat 13-Jun-20 08:28:23

Posted too soon, I agree. I always knew his mum was part of his package. But now it feels much more complicated than it did previously.

OP’s posts: |
Igtg Sat 13-Jun-20 08:31:20

What do you actually want from him in this ‘bubble?’

Liveandforget Sat 13-Jun-20 08:31:24

It would be over for me. He has demonstrated unwillingness to be there for you when you need him. He's too comfortable where he is.

Hazelnutlatteplease Sat 13-Jun-20 08:31:28

I don't think either of you are being unreasonable. You for wanting to break lockdown or him for not wanting to. If this is the only thing wrong it seems a shame to end it over this

Spanishcove Sat 13-Jun-20 08:33:01

You’re not, of course but it sounds as if it’s only highlighted something that was always there — he’s lived with his mother for ten years, and is clearly very committed to her. That doesn’t work for you now, if it ever did.

Having said that, if it’s the slightest consolation, OP, I know/know of several couples in fairly new relationships who moved in together for lockdown, having not lived together in any sustained way before, and the relationships have ended. Too much proximity and isolation too fast, often while working from home and/or dealing with one another’s children.

SoberCurious Sat 13-Jun-20 08:36:51

Quite a few decades old relationships have ended as a result of being stuck at home together too OP.

Hazelnutlatteplease Sat 13-Jun-20 08:38:08

Being "there for you" shouldn't have to involve breaking the law. At the moment the bubbles do not extend to those shielding nor to households with 2 adults in them. So actually whilst the OP can "bubble" the Ops OH actually cant.

The difficulties of living with a vulnerable individual mean noone can break lockdown without a shed ton of guilt that they might be the one to bring it back to the shielding individual and potentially kill them. It's hard.

Thats not to say the OP doesnt have her own challenges and upsets. She does. But i t will be hard on the Ops OH too.

TwentyViginti Sat 13-Jun-20 08:38:22

He is entrenched with his mother. This can be used as an excuse for no further commitment from him for the forseeable.

Movinghouse2015 Sat 13-Jun-20 08:38:29

He has not lived with his mum for the full ten years. He left when he was in another relationship.

We knew living together and both WFH would not have worked. My 20yr old is demanding. They have suffered mental health issues over the years linked to their medical condition (it is life changing/limiting).

From the bubble I wanted him to come and spend time here. Stay over the odd night. Both my DC get on well with him and this was our normal prior to lockdown. I guess I gust wanted some support, physically and emotionally.

OP’s posts: |
funnylittlefloozie Sat 13-Jun-20 08:39:00

I think you need to meet up with him, and have a really honest talk about what you BOTH want, and see if there is some middle ground for you. With both of you having vulnerable family members, its going to make everything really difficult. I wish you good luck.

Hazelnutlatteplease Sat 13-Jun-20 08:42:32

Actually with a 20 year old in the house the OP doesn't fall under the bubble rules either. confused I dont think they make any exemptions for adult SN

2020times Sat 13-Jun-20 08:44:09

Sorry but I think you are being a little unfair - you've both agreed to stick literally to the rules until now. You've decided you don't want to anymore, he hasn't. He can still provide emotional support, he just can't sleep in your bed (yet)

Movinghouse2015 Sat 13-Jun-20 08:44:57

It is my 20yr old he uses as his reason for not breaking lockdown. He believes if they became ill and it was a result of him, I'd never forgive him.

I understand why he feels this. Both my children have been my world. My 20 yr old will return to uni Sept. They have to live their life.

If we consider both his mum and my DC, we will never be together until there is a vaccine. I believe as we have both followed rules, this is our safest time to spend time together.

I've agreed this would need to be reviewed as lockdown is eased.

OP’s posts: |
Igtg Sat 13-Jun-20 08:45:46

Yes that’s not ‘allowed’ for either of you I don’t think so I understand why he doesn’t want to. In time, things will get easier and you can be together more again. I don’t think he’s done anything terrible but it depends if you can endure it for longer.

Movinghouse2015 Sat 13-Jun-20 08:48:25

Deep down I know I'm being unreasonable. I needed to hear it from others.

You are right, we have both agreed and adhered to the rules. Now I'm moving the goalposts and expect him to join me.

I need to reflect why I feel I need to do this and look at my own emotional needs.

OP’s posts: |
Hazelnutlatteplease Sat 13-Jun-20 08:56:06

He believes if they became ill and it was a result of him, I'd never forgive him.

I dont think you can underestimate the strength of emotion this feeling engenders.

And if ive been hard on you it is only because I really do feel for your dilemma. It's a new relationship for me (although friends for years) we saw each other in person (broke lockdown) just before they released lockdown as i figured this was going to be the safest time in a long time. As nice as the afternoon was I am very glad the 14 day incubation period is now over and it probably wasn't worth it. I won't be doing it again and am considering ended the relationship because a dont want to put boyfriend through what your experiencing. I can't and wont be putting another persons needs first. It makes me a very bad partner.

Movinghouse2015 Sat 13-Jun-20 09:07:26

Hazelnut I appreciate your point of view. It's very easy when sat alone to lose sight of others and their feelings.

My DP not wanting to break lockdown, felt personal too me. I know in reality that's not the case, but my minds been running away with me.

We have always communicated well. I need to consider why I needed him to after break lockdown. I'm not sure we would of broke it if he had agreed. I think it's that he wouldn't have the conversation that upset me.

OP’s posts: |
PicsInRed Sat 13-Jun-20 09:17:15

Bluntly, his mother sounds exhausting and emotionally...smothering. She could easily live another 10 or even 20 years. A significant minority live into their 90s.

You could be looking at a decade, two decades or even a quarter century plus of this. You could be 70+ before being free to find out if he actually wants to be free.

Has it occurred to you that Mum might not ever intend to share her son - and that's why the first marriage ended?

Think carefully about how you want the rest of your life to look. Your relationship ending is not 2 years wasted, if it ending vastly improves the next 40+ years of your life.

Hazelnutlatteplease Sat 13-Jun-20 09:32:23

Don't be hard on yourself and what you're feeling either. It's very real too.

It's just the Pandemic isnt fair and its putting people in positions they never thought they'd be in

Movinghouse2015 Sat 13-Jun-20 09:35:58

Pics that is my concern. Than I question if I'm being unreasonable.

My gran is 92. She lives independently, during this lockdown she has managed amazingly. We have encouraged her to go out in nice weather on her mobility scooter. My siblings have done her shopping and we have kept her safe. She has mastered FaceTime at this grand age!!

So I do struggle with his mums lack of independence. As I get to know them more, it's apparent how dependent she is on my DP. He feels responsible for her, she had an awful relationship with his dad and did her best to provide for them. When he purchased the house I really do not think he considered the long term implications to his life. I'd really hate for my children as adults to feel like he does, it's not a healthy relationship in my opinion.

The breaking of lockdown is probably a side issue, long term I'm questioning our future with both our commitments. Both my DC can and will move out eventually (I am saving into an isa for them to support this). I don't plan on making them feel trapped staying with me if I'm alone. Obviously they will always have a home with me if needed and whilst studying.

OP’s posts: |
Swimmingwiththebees Sat 13-Jun-20 09:58:54

Movinghouse2015

Pics that is my concern. Than I question if I'm being unreasonable.

My gran is 92. She lives independently, during this lockdown she has managed amazingly. We have encouraged her to go out in nice weather on her mobility scooter. My siblings have done her shopping and we have kept her safe. She has mastered FaceTime at this grand age!!

So I do struggle with his mums lack of independence. As I get to know them more, it's apparent how dependent she is on my DP. He feels responsible for her, she had an awful relationship with his dad and did her best to provide for them. When he purchased the house I really do not think he considered the long term implications to his life. I'd really hate for my children as adults to feel like he does, it's not a healthy relationship in my opinion.

The breaking of lockdown is probably a side issue, long term I'm questioning our future with both our commitments. Both my DC can and will move out eventually (I am saving into an isa for them to support this). I don't plan on making them feel trapped staying with me if I'm alone. Obviously they will always have a home with me if needed and whilst studying.

Lockdown won't continue forever. You've done a long stint now and if the papers are anything to go by, soon you'll be allowed to officially 'bubble up'. I don't think he's being unreasonable wanting to wait.

You're right that the bigger issue is your future and whether you have one. I think you need to have a serious chat with him (probably face to face). What do you next 5 years look like? Your kids will move out and get more independent... Do you see him and you living together at this point? What does he see? He's obviously got a huge commitment to his mum and has bought into a house with her... Can he see leaving her alone? Does he think you'll move in to that house? Would you?

NoMoreDickheads Sat 13-Jun-20 10:24:10

He has refused and wants to wait until it's formally allowed.

I think it's reasonable for him to not want to put his mum's life at risk and break the law. It doesn't mean he's not fond of you. Imagine how he would feel if his mum died as a result of his actions.

He's come for dates and to your garden etc, so it's not like he's avoiding you.

Read further down the thread- so you're prepared to put your 20 year old's life at risk for the sake of your emotional or physical 'needs.' Hmmm. This is not a need it's a want, if you don't get it you're not going to die or anything. If you feel your MH is that fragile please speak to your GP or consultant. You are actually seeing him, you just aren't sleeping with him or having sex.

I wouldn't necessarily want a bloke this involved with his mum, though.

Some people are different at different ages BTW. His mum has a lot of health conditions and also a timid nature compared to your gran.

My mum is 73 and still gadding around as usual seeing friends (more than she should be and has all along) but a friend's mum has to have someone get her shopping for her (even though I don't think there's anything significantly wrong with her, at least not physically.) Everyone's different.

But this whole mum situation sounds a bit annoying for you.

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