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BF daughter wants me to hide! Help!(3 Posts)
I am currently dating a man who has a 6 year old daughter from his previous marriage. He has been divorced for 4 years, and we have been dating for over a year. I am his first relationship since his marriage, and I have no children of my own. Almost every aspect of our relationship is great, but I’m having some difficulties with his child and don’t know what to do.
My BF and his ex have 50/50 custody. His ex is currently deployed so he has his child full time. He and his daughter are extremely close. I should also mention the child has mild autism, which I am completely okay with, but it does present even more unique challenges. Before he got full custody, we had an issue where his child did not want her mother or grandparents to see me. If he was dropping her off and I was in the car she would want me to hide and would say things such as “I don’t want mom/grandma/grandpa to see her.” she was very adamant about it. This made me very uncomfortable. I didn’t want to meet her mother bc of it as I didn’t want the child to have a meltdown. My BF and I both felt the behavior was odd as her mother is also in a relationship (for about 3 years) and the child seems to love her significant other. The child talks to my BF about him frequently. My BF talked to her about the behavior, and although she didn’t say why she felt the need for me to hide, she hasn’t done it again. It still hurts my feelings a tad she didn’t want me to be seen.
My BF and I do not live together and since he got full custody we only see each other about 2 days a week. His child sometimes says things like “Why did you bring her” or “I don’t want her to come” when I go out with them, and again I feel extremely embarrassed and uncomfortable. I know it’s silly feeling this way as she is so young but I can’t help it! Some days I feel like she likes me and wants to play but the majority of the time it’s a complete disconnect. With her autism, it can be hard to bond as she has a hard time carrying on a conversation, often completely ignoring any of my comments/questions. when she plays she usually only wants Dad to play with her. When its us 3, I feel like an outsider as they play and talk and I sit on the sidelines. It’s not that I don’t try to involve myself, I just find it extremely difficult to assert myself in their life together. My BF notices the separation when I’m with them and says it will eventually get better. As his GF, I respect their time alone time together, and I understand it is not going to be easy for her to accept someone else when it has only been her and dad for the last 4 years. I do not want her to feel like I’m taking her dad away from her. At the same time, I love my boyfriend and want to spend time with him, and I would like to have a relationship with his daughter, but she doesn’t seem to like me or want me to be involved.
My BF often talks about us moving in together, and having additional children. But I’m questioning how we can become a family if I cannot establish some type of a relationship with his child. I don’t expect to be her mother by any means, but I do feel it is essential we have some kind of relationship. I often wonder if things will ever change or if I am wasting my time. I love my BF very much but I don’t want to feel like an outsider if we share a home, or have a divided family if we had children. I know with time it may get better, but I’m curious as to how much time, if any, will it take. Is there hope to try and bond with her? Are my feelings about some of her behaviors warranted? Does it ever actually get better?
It might or it might not but only time will tell so considering the situation, the best thing you can do is not rush into anything even if your heart tells you differently.
It's fine to talk about moving in and having kids together, that's him trying to tell you that he considers you a long term companion, but this will need to be whrn it is the right time.
This girl is probably having ambivalent feelings towards just as you have with her. Children with autism are even more likely to act on their feelings and feel in response to their environment, so you are bouncing your respective feelings on each other. With time, you might get into phase, but there are difficulties that can't be ignored, the fact that he has her FT, or even 50/50 if this resume do your home will definitely always be hers too, she won't be visiting. Her autism mean that her needs will be even thrm those without a disability and you don't have children yet, so havent yet been exposed to the reality of sharing your life with children compared to the perception of what it is.
So DO take your time and don't move on, let alone get pregnant until you feel 100% that it is right and you prepared to take on this girl as she is. The reality is that this relationship could go nowhere not because the love and willingness to commit isn't there but because of his situation as a man who is, already a dad.
I think the key thing here is she does have Austism and change can be extremely triggering, especially if she’s not expecting you to be there when she does see her df, does he tell her prior to you’re visit you’re going to be there? Maybe allow them to spend time together on a one to one basis and build back up to reintroducing you at a slower pace but letting her know you’re going to be there prior to her visit.