How much baggage is too much?(16 Posts)
DP has recently proposed and I accepted but am now having doubts if I can actually go through with it all.
I have 4 DDs and he has 3 DDs. The younger ones get on fine but the teenagers (4) are not so easy.
Also his ex wife is an alcoholic and has hit, strangled and been very abusive to his older children and the police and social services have become involved. This also means that half the week his DDs live with him.
Would I be sensible to walk away from all the drama now? I could cope with 7 children every other weekend but I think it is probably a matter of time before the authorities decide that they are better off not living with their mother at all.
Could this ever work? I'm thinking not.
If you want a straight honest answer...no!
A) You're right, those 4 girls could soon be living with you full time.
B) If your home is going to be the average 3 bed, you're facing some serious overcrowding!
C) With 7 young girls in the house, how are you going to cope with the day to day chores, will the girls help, or will you be forever cooking, cleaning, fetching and carrying? When will you two adults have time for each other?
And most importantly, D) You're already having serious doubts, listen carefully to them!
Are you already living together, or do you still have your own home? If it's the latter why not stay like that, in a committed relationship, but in different houses....at least until some of them have left home?!
You will end up with 7 children full time, and his traumatised by their mum. You can chose that for yourself if you want but think about what you would be choosing for your children to have to deal with.
I had 6 children for some years, two full time, all every weekend. I would say it's too much if the oldest are going to be in any way resentful. Also if you are stricter, and as adults you think any of them will compete with you and DP as authority, as this will be a constant battle if you are trying to have clear and fair rules that the younger ones can see at respected by all.
P.s.I'd also add it wasn't the practicalities that I found hard, but the emotional ones.
I would wonder if it's right for you AND right for the children.If they have had a difficult life they will need to have nurturing and I think sharing with 4 other children will not give them time & space.
It's natural to move a relationship to engagement then marriage but if you are already parents I think you have to focus on the children.DH's ex combined her children with her new husband.There are 5 children, all seemed fine at first, then some storming and it appeared to settle down.However 2 children are in counselling, the oldest has flunked exams despite previously being a high flyer.The stress us now putting strains on the adult relationships who row regularly.It's not a good situation at all.I think everyone would have been happier if they kept 2 houses and dated.
No, and can you imagine the food shopping!!!!
Thank you all for your replies. We don't live together and I don't think we will now.
It would almost definitely be too much for me and my DDs to cope with.
So don't get married but stay engaged and don't live together until you are all ready.
You have to do what's right for you and your dc.
We have 6 between us and, for different reasons, two of DH's teens have recently come to live mainly with us. It's been quite a challenge adjusting to it, and that's on the back of having lived together over 3 years so the kids all get on well.
I was worried about the kids getting on before we moved in, but actually that's been fine - they range from being ambivilent about each other to being really close and loving having new step siblings. But no real conflict between them since we moved in - there was more before we lived together mainly because we were spending time at DH's house and his youngest was territorial about it and my DC had nowhere to go that was theirs. But that was the youngest two who fought (age 8ish) - the teens were OK about it all. What's been much harder has been trying to be a parent to kids that aren't mine, and have been used to different house rules. DH has never been their primary carer either, so he's had to step up a lot with them moving in. He's managed to reduce his working hours a bit, but I've also had to give up stuff to be at home more as more teenagers just takes more time and energy.
It's a lot less difficult a situation than yours sounds though - we do, thankfully, have a house that's now big enough (DSD1 has left home), but room sharing was a bit of a strain between kids not used to sharing. DH's ex is not abusive to the kids - at least not physically and it's all happened with her agreement, or at least acceptance, not via social services which I think would be a much harder situation. Also we now have 4-5 teens in the house (and sometimes only 2), not 7. That does sound really hard.
How does your DP feel about it? It might be worth discussing how he feels about the potential scenarios you have raised in your OP.
Why are they only 50/50 living with him when 50% of the time they are hit and strangled by an alcoholic?
He should have less focus on engagements and new families and more focus on getting his kids in a stable full time family with him.
Absolutely don't throw all these kids in together - it would be a total disaster.
How long have you been together? How well do you know and care for his children and vice versa? You should only consider marriage when you are both totally certain that things are settled and you are happy together as a family. Getting married just because you love each other, in such circumstances, is a very foolish thing to do.
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