NP's son refusing to accept new situation(75 Posts)
I am new to MN so please bear with me.
I have been with my boyfriend for 18 months. Our relationship began whilst he was still with his wife (but very unhappily married) but he left his wife very shortly afterwards. His wife and his son (12) took it badly (unsurprisingly), although both knew that the marriage was really bad - his ex though thought it was capable of being saved. I am significantly younger than my partner so this has been a source of ridicule for ex and son - and I suspect meant that they thought/think he would have epiphany and return home. His son remains focused on reuniting his parents - meaning my bf's time with him is focused on pacifying him and to a certain extent denying my existence (his son is often v nasty to him). The problem is that our relationship has stalled (from my perspective) because, although we are very close and happy, he has a separate life. Result being I cannot move on with my life and having gone through difficult times, then separation and with new relationship I need that to happen. I cant expect him to do anything but put his son's interests first but what do I do?
Also, he first met my DD (8) and ds (6) about 9 months ago and their relationship with him has developed really well - we do lots of nice things together (which creates guilt for me). I have a good relationship with my ex and they see him often - so all good in that respect.
Sorry for ramble - any thoughts much appreciated.
I sense that if I'd posted that I was in a desperately unhappy relationship with a cruel, vindictive and controlling husband and embarked on a relationship with a very kind man but didn't know what to go the responses might be different
Have you actually read the Relationships board?? The majority of posters on here would have advised you to leave the marriage first THEN start a new relationship! Don't try and justify your affair - it was dishonest and wrong and your DP betrayed his wife and you helped him do this - no wonder his son doesn't want anything to do with you.
I know you don't want to hear this but you do reap what you sow. Your bf's son may never accept you and you have to accept that - surely you must have known he wouldn't just welcome you with open arms?
RE MN morality crew-
We can all tell who would be in the first row at public hangings/floggings/ stocks a few centuries ago ...
Cheated on your spouse have you mignonette?
No, I was cheated on. So if anybody should be throwing tomatoes it would be me but I can see that there are pretty much always two sides to the lives of others.
Posted too soon. I was able to realise that turning my children against their step parent would only hurt them. And that their Father ending up w/ another broken relationship would only hurt them.
No mig - you're wrong on that score. Public hangings? Talk about picking up the ball and running with it!
Look - the best advice OP can get is some insight into her situation, because she posts as though she doesn't have much. She says 'yes yes I understand - affair blah blah - his son will be pissed off blah blah, but how do we move forward?'
The OP isn't really making room for how deeply this will have affected the family left behind. That is why affairs are bad idea. People just aren't all that willing to forgive and forget.
And that, quite frankly, is tough shit.
And mig I agree. There is no good to be found in keeping the vitriol alive.
But the lad is 12, and there's really nothing OP can do. This is a job for his father.
She isn't being blase. She has made that clear. You are reading (and displacing) into her posts, negative feelings which are no there.
And my comment was directed towards people who only come onto these threads to wag their fingers and tut. She is asking for help. If you do not want to offer some (because you care not a jot about the plight of this 12 year old) , then don't read on.
I got together with my dh 18 months after his ex left him. I have been blamed for the demise of their relationship ever since. When I was expecting our first dc together (9 years after we met - so 10.5 years after they'd split) the weeping and wailing and "now mummy and daddy are never getting back together" was something else (we were married 5 yrs at this stage too) and it hasn't stopped much in the 12 years since! The way I see it is that somebody needs to take the blame and the Wicked Stepmother is often the easiest target.
The Father has to take the lead but it is vital that he presents a united team w/ the OP otherwise even more discordance will be introduced. The moment the child infers dischord of approach, all will be lost. The OP can do much too.
It's not a morality crew. OPs morals are her own business as are everyone elses.
It's about consequences of your actions. The consequence of having an affair is that children get hurt and may not want to play happy families with you.
You can't have it all ways, if you are a cheat people don't trust you, if you contribute to breaking up a family then you won't be respected by the children of that family.
Its a bit rich to come on here bleating that your life is not moving on when the problem is of your own making.
I was able to realise that turning my children against their step parent would only hurt them
You are so right (and generous to be able to act on it) Mignonette
I was able to realise that turning my children against their step parent would only hurt them
Yes, as an adult, you were able to realise that the long term effects would be negative and you acted accordingly.
Do you really expect this child to have the same outlook? Or are you assuming his mother is behind this? I doubt it, at 12 he's very capable of seeing with his own eyes and understanding what happened.
If OP was more interested in helping to repair the damage she helped to cause, and less interested in moving on so she wouldn't be left out, there might be more support.
As it is, unless she acknowledges her part in this colossal mess, this child will most likely never want her around. And who could blame him, really?
I don't think she is asking for views on the morality of an affair. And she would not be in a position now to un-do the affair even if she wanted to.
She's asking for how to build a better relationship with her DP's son. Telling her "it's doomed to failure because you deserve it" isn't really very constructive advice is it?
And the reality is that some people in her position do manage to build relations with their new DSC - as my own DSC did with their step dad. Some relationships formed out of affairs do go on to be long and happy marriages. So it's simply untrue to say that it's all doomed to failure (even if you are of the view that she deserves it).
OP the best thing you can do for this boy is to let him have his time with his father and take a back seat and get on with your life accepting that he may never want to be part of your family.
(because you care not a jot about the plight of this 12 year old) , then don't read on
And you know that how, exactly?
The boy will work it out in his own time. He is the child here and you are the adult. He may never like you. He doesn't have to like you. He did not choose to have you in your life.
In Family Law step parenting is known as the worst role of them all.
I'm sorry, but i don't blame him tbh.
Although not entirely your fault, your dp has traded his boy's mum for a younger model and quickly at that.
Age 12 is a difficult age as it is, it's a lot of change for a pre-teen to take on especially with hormones etc.
He may never accept you and you musn't blame him if he chooses not to.
Duffle Thank you. The fact that your post brought me to tears shows that the pain is still there waiting to pounce, 15 years on.
I have had some wonderful step parents (better than my own parents to be honest) so that did help.Walter I was a child when my parents marriage ended after years of mess and I can assure you that at 11, I welcomed my new stepfather. I was able to understand and cope because people around me (grandparents) explained and helped me understand that their is never one side to the story. My Mother ran off w/ another man leaving us.
I have a clutch of step children too and it is a rocky road. Things can go well for years but scratch the surface and the pain is there waiting to be directed at you whether you deserve it or not. Fact is, even if you meet your new DH years after a marital break up, the children may still see you as the obstacle to their magical thoughts about their parents reuniting.
You represent the end of the day.
FWIW telling a one sided view of the sitution damages the children as much as any affair.
DH ex wife was shagging another bloke for years before he met me, he didn't leave because he was scared (correctly) she would stop him seeing the children.
She spent so much time with the OM, the children used to stop in his house on the way home from school, before anyone suggests he was spinning me a line. She told the children it was OK because she was sleeping on OMs sofa - as told to me by SD.
When DH met me - she went fucking beserk, threatened to torch his bike, cut up his clothes, do anything in her power to stop the children seeing him.
We had literally just met, but he didn't fancy more years of sitting by while she fucked another man so he moved out, after 2 years of her trying to throw him out so she could move OM in.
He got a flat and we embarked on a veyr successful relationship.
What did she tell the children, who were well aware of the OM, he used to cut DHs MIL Lawn.
They were in debt up to their eyeballs, but what little money the did have he gave her, 100% of the equity in their home plus initially 50% of his low pay in maintenance.
What did she go on to tell the children??
That DH had run off with another woman, stolen all their money, that he didn't want to pay for them.
Of course as soon as she was actually single OM dropped her like the sack of shit she was.
The children no longer see their father, after years of the poison being dripped into their ears, and despite hard fought for and very expensive court orders.
The youngest is asking to see her dad (at 18), in secret - because she misses him but she doesn't want her mother to know she sees him
He complies, unwillingly, with the secrecy, because the people who suffer the emotional abuse are the children not him.
So yes we had an affair, but it wasn't our affair that damaged the children was it.
however OP, all that aside and reading your posts, if I was you - I would run a mile as fast as I could in the opposite direction.
Or I would take the other road and not have a relationship with DS beyond what is absolutely necessary - he doesn't want you in his life, he doesn't need a third parent.
Accepting not being a part of DHs life with him, will save you a lot of heartache in the long run.
mignonette you cannot apply your own feeling and experiences to this child. You have no idea how he feels and just because you were able to adjust, doesn't mean he will be.
My dp and I are in the same situation. He left his wife of 17 years for me 4 years ago (although I am older than her!). I am completely unashamed about it. His marriage was deeply unhappy and his exw nastyiness and spite were the cause of it and she got what was coming to her.
Following this she was incredibly vindicative about his 2 children, then 14 and 11 and did everything possible to sever their relationship with their dad. How someone can do that to their own kids is beyond me. His daughter no long speaks with him. His son has a better relationship buut we do not meet.
Anyway why I am posting. Firstly Ignore comments judging you on here. Any mature adult knows there are two sides of the story in a failed marriage. Secondly however there are some words of wisdom too.
You cannot expect a child to have the maturity to see beyond the destruction of their family. Of course you may well have been represented as the wicked witch whose responsible. He needs time to rebuild with dp and restabilise. Trying to force him to have a relationship with you might not be realistic. Many kids have reunion fantasies and a ow is death to any chance of a return to lost innocence. Give him time and space. However the "he will hate you forever" is also a load of crap. As a child matures and starts finding out relationships he will mature and see things in a more balanced way and may well accept his dads decision and see more clearly what went wrong in his parents marriage. Any mature kindly adult would help bring peace and forgiveness to his life and his relationship with his dad. But let him come to you. It can't be forced but just be supported. I know many others who have gone through this process in time.
Also read some of the stepaprenting, teenager stuff on here. This is not just about a divorce with ow involved. Lots if others have same issues.
Also for me I actively don't want my dps kids to meet my children. Frankly they are hugely damaged not only by their dad leaving for ow but by their mums post split conflict driven behaviour. Until they recover, if ever, they are not going to be part of my or my kids lives as my kids are not going to be exposed to that kind of hostile and nasty environment. If you have kids think about this.
So overall advice is be happy with your dp - I know we are - but let time and Dp try to heal your relationship with dss.
You have to ask yourself if you can build your happiness out of the rubble of someone else's misery.
As is apparent from this thread there are people who can clearly put their own desires and needs to the forefront and either ignore the pain left behind or justify it by insisting the family they dismantled was failing anyway or the ex-partner deserved to be hurt in some way because their personality or behaviour were not worthy of the cheating partner.
But plenty of others will spend years investing energy, time and compromise in the expectation that eventually the affair will be forgiven by their partner's loved ones and the end will justify the means.
I'm sure that it does happen but it very often doesn't and are you willing waste your life like that?
My Dad's OW has spent her youth waiting for him. Christmas with her brother's family while my Dad is with us, not invited to anything to do with his family, ostracised by his old friends and judged by new ones. I doubt it was worth it.
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