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Frustrated with my own lack of strength

(10 Posts)
thepinkhen Tue 09-Oct-12 12:50:36

Slight name change but most of you will know me and my situation. Probably should put this in relationships but can't face typing out the whole background and then getting the obligatory "you knew what you were getting into" comments. hmm and I fear this is going to be long, sorry.

OK, so mine and DS will be free of tenants within a week. I've told DP that I don't want to re-let it and I want DS and I to move back there.

He is showing all sorts of emotions and is obviously trying to persuade me to stay.

I feel absolutely numb. I can't seem to get motivated to make a decision and am just sitting on the fence. I've tried to persuade him that we could have a relationship if I went back "home" but he keeps coming up with reasons why it wouldn't work such as "you don't expect me to keep a room for your DS here do you?" (meaning he wants to give it to his girls who currently share a room even though they would be at his house less than DS would) or "it would only work if we could see each other every day and DSD could come for tea/walk to my house from school on a regular basis". He is saying that he would go back to parenting his kids his old way, in which I have been fighting to get changed so hard for so long. He is doing his best to persuade me that being a couple whilst living apart would be a bad thing.

I have told him of my sadness at not getting time with DS alone anymore and his response is that in a big family, you have to grab time when you can and he pointed out that he took DSD out for a few hours a few weekends ago and yet I let DS go for a sleepover at a friends house. I pointed out that he often says his kids will do such and such on such and such day, but often the plans are changed at the last minute, so I couldn't have guaranteed time with DS, so I thought it unfair to stop him sleeping round a mates for the weekend, for the possibility of a few hours with him, that were reliant on DP, his ex wife and DSD. I've also told him many times how much it upsets me that we can't plan anything for ourselves. He talked about us having a weekend away (a not uncommon thing before DSD moved in) in Sept but all he has done is badger me about taking all the kids away at half term with no committment to a weekend away for ourselves despite his assurances that it will happen and he will enroll his family to help etc.

When I've told him I don't like spending the majority of the weekend on my own with the majority of his kids whilst he is out ferrying kids around (uneccesarily in many circumstances - they could get lifts with friends/the bus/stay at Mums for a few extra hours etc), he has simply told me that is what big families do, they do what the kids "need", it's normal and I'm just not used to a big family. I've pointed out that it's what HE chooses to do and that I have no real choice. My whole schedule has to fit around the contact schedule (which with DSD is non existant now anyway!).

He is saying that DS will be at uni in a few years time and I'm making all this sacrifice now, when he will be gone soon enough.

We are having an extra relationship counselling session this week to help us come up with a compromise or situation that we agree on etc. but I suppose I just feel the counsellor will try and make me stay because it's his job to try and make us work on the relationship and stay together. DP keeps saying I am giving up and that things have got better (he certainly seems to listen to me more, rather than just dismiss me) but the actions aren't really matching as yet (although it is better, to give him some credit) and maybe I am guilty of not changing myself enough too. The counsellor is saying that when DP "accomodates everyone elses wants" it makes me feel insecure and not important, which makes me distance myself from him, which makes him experience his fear of being abandoned which makes him cling onto his kids and "accomodate" them and the ex all the more. The only way I see that cycle being broken is by him changing his mindset and putting in boundaries for his kids or by me keeping my mouth shut and allowing him to parent his kids as he likes (which I have been doing a lot of anyway), so that he feels more secure.

The thought of staying fills me with dread and is just about me taking the "easy" option, but at least I would still have a relationship with DP, who, you would never believe from reading this, is actually nice to be around, fun and kind when we are not dealing with kid/ex wife related issues, which in reality is not all the time. DS wouldn't have to go through the upheaval (he told me last night that he would really miss DSD if we went back to our home sad).

If I go, I have so many practicalities to sort out and financially I have to fund a lot of things furniture wise because I gave up so much when I moved in with DP. But I think what really frightens me is that DP will move on to someone else, that I will provide childcare for DSD in my new home (because DS will want to see her) while he finds somebody else (ironic that he will get the free time I am asking for now!), I will feel lonely without all the chaos and hustle and bustle and won't know how to fill my time. I've been through 2 long term relationship splits and coped badly both times.

I have some very supportive friends who have offered to help me decorate, move, help with DS etc. but ultimately they know it has to be my decision.

I feel weak and pathetic for not being able to just DO something.angry

SingingTunelessly Tue 09-Oct-12 14:18:03

Pink, this situation has been going on for so long hasn't it that it's almost become normal to you. Remember the times you've longed for that peace with just you and DS to worry about? The freedom from the demands of DP's children? When DP says about DS going to Uni that's at least 6 years away!

No-one can tell you what to do you know that but the worry that DP may meet someone else should not be taken into consideration. If he does, well that shows you how much you mean to him doesn't it? You've never appeared to be a priority in his plans anyway.

Have a big hug. This is a tough decision I know.

glasscompletelybroken Tue 09-Oct-12 14:45:06

Your DP is saying the relationship won't work if you live apart but what he means is that he can't be arsed to make the extra effort that would be required to make it work.

At the moment you are shouldering much of the work and making most of the effort - of course he doesn;t want that to change.

You have to do what is right for you and your son. If your relationship is worth it you will both make the effort to make it work while living apart. if he won't make that effort then he is not worth it.

The only thing you know for sure is that you and your son ARE worth it and it'd time to get a little peace and happiness for you both.

mouldyironingboard Tue 09-Oct-12 15:21:03

Pink, I've followed your posts with interest. Ultimately, you need to put you and DS's needs first in this situation, so I think you should move back to your own home. Your DSD can visit at times that suit YOU and DS, not your DP.

If you want to change your situation you don't need the counsellor to give you permission to do it. Nobody could ever accuse you of not trying to make your stepfamily work and I know that I would have left much sooner if it were me in your shoes!

I see this as a brilliant chance to take back control of your life. If your DP moves onto another woman if just proves that he never really cared about you the way he should and you deserve better.

thepinkhen Tue 09-Oct-12 23:52:43

Well I can't carry on like this. I've tried. Maybe I'm messed up by my childhood, maybe I can't cope with things that others would let go but ds deserves me to show him that WE should come first sometimes.

Ds has been being taken advantage of in school and is suffering the consequences and it all came out this evening. I've suddenly realised I've been teaching him to not ask for his own needs to be met by my own behaviour. I feel pretty rubbish about that sad.

Time to move onwards and upwards. Deep breath.

glasscompletelybroken Wed 10-Oct-12 08:47:04

Keep posting pink - there is support here.

I spent 3 years building up to leaving my exH and when I actually did it the relief was overwhelming. It's hard but it will get easier.

Eliza22 Wed 10-Oct-12 08:58:43

I feel so sorry for you and your ds, in this seemingly endless trauma. I think for your dp to suggest that your son will be "off to uni soon" about sums him up. You rightly must put your son first in this. He's had a lot on his (very young) plate and to suggest you should just carry on and count down to ds leaving home, is awful. HE'S AT HOME NOW and you ought to be able to enjoy that. Once they're gone, they're gone. Yes, they come home to visit but, this time now, is special.

I'm just glad, having read your posts over time, that you and ds have a property to go to and maybe get some peace and normality. Let your dp continue with his taxi service and you have some quality of life with your son.

LtEveDallas Wed 10-Oct-12 09:15:16

But I think what really frightens me is that DP will move on to someone else, that I will provide childcare for DSD in my new home (because DS will want to see her)

Why would you have to provide the childcare for DSD, why couldn't DS go and see her at her fathers house?

Pink, I really think you have give this relationship far far more than a good go. You have tried everything to make it work and more. You have put yourself last every single time and you have got nothing out of it except empty promises, lies and heartache.

I really do think a move would be best for you and DS. I'm very sorry that it has come to this, but I don't see that you have any choice, not if you want to have any semblance of a life.

Chin up love. Take care.

mouldyironingboard Wed 10-Oct-12 12:14:55

Sorry to hear that your DS is having a difficult time at school.

Don't put off the move back to your property for financial reasons. You can find cheap second-hand furniture quite easily and I suspect various MN members can help you out if you ask. Make a list of the absolute minimum that you would need to start out with.

Practise saying 'no' to yourself in the mirror, for when DP asks you to help out with childcare. I suggest that you ask him not to contact you at all for the first few weeks so that you and DS can settle in properly.

Eliza22 Wed 10-Oct-12 13:09:46

Mouldy, that's a very good point.

And as to your dp finding someone else, do you imagine he would be any different, with her? I think I feel sorry for HER already!!

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