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off to a bad start

(18 Posts)
Plentyoffishnets Sat 21-Jul-18 17:14:46

I'm just wondering if anyone has got off to a bad start with their kids and new partners and would care to share? or if anyone is able to offer me some advice?
I've met a great new guy and we're 5 months in. Kids met him a couple of months ago as are too old for me to sneak someone in after they're in bed and they have no contact with their dad so I have very limited child free time. It was probably too early probably but it felt like the right thing to do as we both think this is long term.
He comes round about 2/3 times a week - I'm trying to balance it, but my kids are reacting badly.
We have a weekend camp trip planned and my daughter is kicking off about it and is saying she'll refuse to go.
I don't really know what to do to try to turn this around as I do not want to end things with my bf but my kids need to come first. I also don't want to hurt bf feelings as he likes us to spend the time together and is very inclusive.
I've tried talking to her about it and she says it's not him. I don't think she likes the idea of me having a bf. She is 12. My ds is younger and is also fairly negative but I think is mostly copying his big sisters reaction.

OP’s posts: |
Summersnake Sat 21-Jul-18 17:17:06

How long have you been a single mum?

Plentyoffishnets Sat 21-Jul-18 17:19:58

I've been single for 5 years - dated a bit but no-one the kids have met up till now

OP’s posts: |
pallisers Sat 21-Jul-18 17:23:29

could you just slow it down a bit? have him over once a week for a while rather than 2/3 times and build up? I can see how a 12 year old might not want to go on a camping trip with a relatively new boyfriend tbh, that is very close quarters. But then again you are entitled to have a life too so that is hard on you.

Plentyoffishnets Sat 21-Jul-18 17:25:17

this is what I am weighing up and finding hard to judge.
I know that the kids have to come first but also I cannot allow them to dictate everything - if they had their way wed never go out or see anyone!

OP’s posts: |
Plentyoffishnets Sat 21-Jul-18 17:26:14

he lives near by so doesn't stay over, though has crashed here a couple of times

OP’s posts: |
surlycurly Sat 21-Jul-18 17:27:17

Kids are first for me. My ex has a new woman and the kids hate her. It's destroying their relationship with him. I try and be as positive about her as I can but it's not cancelling out the idea that they don't like her. Good luck OP

SchadenfreudePersonified Sat 21-Jul-18 17:51:04

12 is an awkward age. None of us like to think that our parents have or, indeed, ever have had, sex (except for my mother, obviously, who had five children despite being a virgin).

Your DD is just on the cusp of her own blossoming sexuality, and it must be very difficult for her to accept that you are sexually active. If you were still with her dad she could conveniently ignore this, but when your B/F is stopping over it can hardly be just because there is nowhere else for him to sleep.

I think that you are right when you say that you brought him to meet them (and stay over) a bit too soon, but what's done is done. However, while I agree that you can't let your children dictate your life, you really do have to put them first. She may be feeling very threatened (not sexually- just that she is going to lose first place in your affections; she is still very young and is a welter of conflicting hormonal emotions); she may also feel that you/she is betraying her dad (I know this isn't logical - but emotions aren't).

Could you put off the camping holiday for this year? If you are both still together next year she should be a lot more comfortable with him. Can you perhaps share time together on family days out etc, where she can keep her personal space (tents are pretty intimate, even when they are big ones) and there are other things to occupy her time.

She is young and must be feeling very upset about your relationship. She may feel embarrassed, or threatened, or just "teenage". Cut her some slack - if your B/F really cares about you he will be prepared to take his time to form a proper relationship with your children as well as with you. If you force him onto the family, she, and your other children could well become resentful and difficult, which in itself could threaten the relationship.
As surlycurly has said - Kids come first.

Knitjob Sat 21-Jul-18 17:54:33

I think 2-3 nights a week is a lot. And way too soon for a camping trip. Sorry.

Snappedandfarted2018 Sat 21-Jul-18 19:25:49

I agree with the other posters that it’s far too soon to be going on a camping trip. It all sounds abit full on tbh and I think that’s what your dc are reacting to this.

Bananasinpyjamas11 Sat 21-Jul-18 20:55:11

I wouldn’t do a camping trip. People have no space to retreat to, and it’s a bit close for comfort. I’d wait 6 months and do a totally different holiday, one with plenty of kids clubs and / or they can bring their friends.

12 for a girl is possibly the worst age to accept a new partner of their parent.

It is worth slowing down and having bf around less. Expecting less of them but being clear they need to be civil. It’s easier to build up a tolerant relationship if the child is not expected to be okay so soon.

You do need a life, so you should still pursue it. Maybe make clearer lines between your love life and family life. And just do one thing a week together like a meal, but make it low expectations all round. Keep talking to them. If you tell your child that she is right it’s too soon for camping, but next year you’ll do something else, as well as maybe a weekend away just as a family, then she can see you are listening but is also being given an indication that she has to accept this sometime.

Bananasinpyjamas11 Sat 21-Jul-18 20:58:04

I also don't want to hurt bf feelings as he likes us to spend the time together and is very inclusive.

This is also very telling. He is being too intense too soon. He has to respect your kids space and not expect too much.

LilacTeal Sat 21-Jul-18 20:58:58

When I was 12 my mum met her new DP, now DH. I refused to see him for the first year, hated his company for another 5 years until I moved out and now think he's the greatest man she could've found.

I couldn't bear the thought of sharing my mother with someone new. Or get to know any future step siblings.

Time is all you need and strong nerves. flowers

swingofthings Sun 22-Jul-18 09:00:21

Way too much too quickly. Your kids got used to having you for themselves for 5 years, and yes, it's a massive treat but kids can't know that as they can't really compare. Then suddenly, they have to share you, when your mind is probably much more focused on him than them at a time they are approaching teenager years and therefore need you again.

She says it's not him so that's good news. I think you need to be respectful that his coming into your life and bringing more happiness is him taking away some of their happiness, at least that's how they will see it.

I agree that planning a trip that is very family oriented was not the right move in these circumstances. When did you last take your kids on holidays just the three of you?

Plentyoffishnets Sun 22-Jul-18 10:19:54

thanks everyone it's good to hear other ideas and to hear from people who were the 12 year old in this situation.
We last went away in May half term- 9 days away, overseas beach type holiday.
This camping trip is 2 nights away to a local campsite.

OP’s posts: |
JustlikeDevon Sun 22-Jul-18 23:59:06

There is no way in hell I would subject my 12yr old to a camping trip with a new bloke. Sleeping in a tent with what is a relative stranger for 2 nights?! And by Very inclusive I'm hearing pushy and controlling. Don't do it!!

Wdigin2this Mon 23-Jul-18 10:06:05

It's too soon, slow it all down a bit, and forget the camping trip for this summer.
Is there absolutely nobody in your life who could babysit, so you could go out on a date together. Or, do you have the kids friends for sleepovers, could those parents, reciprocate. It would give you perhaps a weekend night, where he could come around to stay!

Palava57 Wed 01-Aug-18 15:01:23

Any child who has had a parent’s exclusive attention for so long is going to take time to get used to sharing them with a new adult.

Not sure why camping should be an issue - unless they don’t like the idea of camping itself & are using DP as an excuse.

I am probably one of the few people who actually did what tends to be championed on here in these circs ie did not have any relationships as a SP when DC young ie for more than a decade sad . Mainly to do with how my SM treated me. Its not necessary & I SO lived to regret that!

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