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Not strictly step parenting (yet), but still think I may have fucked up slightly.....

(15 Posts)
DoodleBugBug Mon 03-Mar-14 14:02:07

So last weekend my boyfriend of a year told me he loved my DD. We were talking about living together, we were both saying how we wanted to wait a few more months, and maybe increase the time he spends at my house with DD.

He was being lovely and said he thinks it will be good, he then said "I love you and DD".
I said "I don't see how you can and don't say it if you don't mean it"hmm

He said he did, then changed the subject.

I was caught way of guard...he spends one evening a week with her and has known her about 9 months. DD is 4 and he doesn't have kids, if that makes any difference.

Part of me feels he said it because he wants to feel it, if that makes sense. Maybe he does mean it....he has done some lovely, thoughtful things for her.

And maybe I'm comparing it to the love I have for her.....thinking he can't possibly love her like I interpret loving her because of the limited time he has known her??
Anyway, he seemed quite hurt by my reaction (which I understand) the next day I did apologise about what I'd said (over text) I explained I no idea he was going to say that (when he told me he loved me I did have an idea it was coming smile). He said not to worry about it.

Do I mention it again? Will I have knocked his confidence maybe? Not really sure if I need to do anything about it or not?

ReadyisKnitting Mon 03-Mar-14 14:09:08

Maybe try repeating what he said to you back, but substituting 'I have a strong affection towards dd' instead of love?

Of course he can't love her like you do, and that would be asking way too much, but surely he's allowed to feel affection? Tbh the way he's prepared to take things at your dd's pace and considers your dd as part of the package says a lot about him smile

Talk it through over a cuppa. Talking face to face is always good smile

TheGirlFromIpanema Mon 03-Mar-14 14:11:03

I think he probably considers you and dd as a package. Exactly as he should imo.
I assume he has told you that he loves you before?

If so he's just telling you that he accepts/loves both of you iyswim.

DoodleBugBug Mon 03-Mar-14 14:24:21

Thank you both for your posts.

I'm so confused, because this relationship is going the way I want....I want him to love DD.

But on the other hand I'm so scared of him jumping in with two feet and then getting the fright of his life and being up to his neck in it.....IYKWIM? Living with a 4 year old.....somebody else's 4 year old.

brdgrl Mon 03-Mar-14 14:27:57

Four year-olds are lovable! He's seen her (and you and her interacting) for 9 months, every week...She's of an age where it is easy to like a child, and easy to feel protective and affectionate.

That's not the same as parental love, perhaps, but it's not nothing. smile

brdgrl Mon 03-Mar-14 14:30:44

(sorry, cross-post)
In a way, maybe you should consider that it doesn't matter if he loves her. In terms of how successful the relationship between them, or what living together will be like for all of you - love doesn't have much to do with it. How does he treat her? Do you have the same values? Do you agree on what his role is?
Love is easy; living together can be hard!

DoodleBugBug Mon 03-Mar-14 14:39:07

Thanks brb.

She is pretty loveable grinwink

Re your second post......we haven't really got to that point yet. He has very subtle started taking on small bits of "parenting" for want of a better, "sure, you can watch so and so on TV, but we need to put these toys away first" that type of stuff. Which is fine with me....although I am a bit of a control freak so we will see!!

I'm sure when the time comes to move in, I will be filling this board with my paranoia!

gingermop Mon 03-Mar-14 14:51:20

he soulds very sweet, and yeah I thinkvits possible he could genuinely love her, as someone els said, 4 year olds r very sweet and lovable.
iv been with my dp almost 3 years, is very close to my eldest whos almost 15, she doesnt really see her dad and dp has taken on that role, after only a year was saying he loved her like she was his own, it warms my heart to see the special bond they have.
keep hold of this one, he sounds like a gooden smile

ReadyisKnitting Mon 03-Mar-14 14:54:06

There's only one way to deal with that paranoia and that's lots of frank discussions about your values, views, boundaries and so on. Parenting as a step is bloody hard and by establishing these, and good communication between you both then gives you the best chance of making it work. You'll also be more prepared for less loveable moments when she's older grin.

ThatBloodyWoman Mon 03-Mar-14 14:57:14

It's sometimes hard as a step parent to be able to find suitable words to express things without treading on anyone's toes.

I always speak in terms of being very fond of dss.If he told me he loved me, I would have no hesitation in returning the sentiment.

It's fraught with difficulty at times when you are the step parent, or partner of the parent, or whatever the situation!

russianfudge Tue 04-Mar-14 08:10:23

Isn't it a but like when we tell our partner we love them after, like six months or something? We think we do and we feel great affection for them but compare that to two, five, ten years down the line and it's just not the same "love". More a genuine affection and fondness..

It is scary because you probably feel like you're now setting her up for a fall if it goes tits up but I don't see the harm. You can choose whether you'd like him to tell her or not...

He sounds like a keeper, by the way winksmile

DoodleBugBug Tue 04-Mar-14 09:24:05

Thanks guys!

Also loving that you all think he is a gooden/keeper! I was thinking the same, but it's nice to have back up!

Kaluki Tue 04-Mar-14 10:08:33

Does he have dc of his own?
Before I had my dc I would have said I loved my niece like my own child but having had my own it really doesn't come close. I do love her but not as fiercely as I love my children.
I think it is nice that he feels this way - don't knock him down for it.
I often wish I had met my dc when they were closer to 4 years old before they got to the entitled spoilt brat stage they were at when I met them. They are lovely now but it has been a long hard slog to get to the point when I can say I am fond of them!!

Kaluki Tue 04-Mar-14 10:14:41

met my STEPchildren
Obviously I met my children before they were 4 years old grin!!!

SeaSaltMill Tue 04-Mar-14 15:49:09

I love my DSC. Not as much as their dad does, and not like their mum does, but I do love them. I loved them very quickly. I love my DH and DSC are part of him. I don't love them as I would my own child (I don't have any) because they're not, but I love them a great deal.

He sounds really nice. And lets be honest, its hard not to love a 4 year old!

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