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Can I get my partner to leave?

23 replies

verymiserable · 29/03/2003 10:04

Things have not been going well with my partner for a while now, we have 3 young children together and I would really like him to leave. I know he won't go though. We have a joint mortgage, although I do not contribute financially, and even if he agreed to leave he wouldn't pay the mortgage if he wasn't living in the house.

I just don't know what to do. My only option the way I see it, is to try and find a property to rent privately and hope that the council will cover the rent. My dd has just started school locally and I really don't want to unsettle her anymore than she would be, by making her change schools.

Is there anything else I can do? The children know that something is up, he hasn't spoken to me all week. I cannot imagine living the rest of my life in this miserable situation, I just want to be happy. I don't want my children to grow up thinking that this is a normal relationship, I want something better for them.

OP posts:

Jzee · 29/03/2003 10:34

I admire your honesty as with 3 children I'm sure it would be alot easier for you to put-up with things the way they are. I haven't been in your situation, but there must be others that have that can offer you sound advice. If it was me, then I would first try and find out where I stood legally ie: he may not want to pay the mortgage if he's not there, but might be forced to even if it's only a temporary solution until you find something else. Citizens advice might be able to point you in the right direction. One way or another he will have to help you financially whether he likes it or not. Personally though, get some sound advice before you consider moving out.


lucy123 · 29/03/2003 10:37

verymiserable - I think your best option in terms of minimum stress for your children would be to try to get your partner to leave. You say he won't pay the mortgage, but as it's his investment too, you might be able to persude him that he should continue to pay the mortgage for, say, 1 year, after which you'll sell the house and he can have his half of the profits plus 1 year's mortgage payments or something (not really fair on you, but may get the result you want).

Alternatively, you should be able to get housing benefit for most of the mortgage interest, which would be much better than getting housing benefit for a rented house. The big problem with housing benefit though is that it usually takes at least a month for the first payment to be made, and they have lots of arbitrary rules which mean that it often doesn't cover the full rent / mortgage. You should ask at the CAB / local council about this.

Since it sounds like your situation is already as bad as it could get, though, I think you should perhaps ask him what he thinks should happen. You may be surprised (well, I hope so) but if he is as unreasonable as you think he will be, then you need to make preparations finacially - is your mortgage the flexible type which you can stop payments on for a few months? Can you get a few hours a week of work to save up? I know these things are probably the last of your worries, but without a little bit of money behind you, finding a house to rent will be very hard.

best of luck.


lucy123 · 29/03/2003 10:39

Also what Jzee says is true (I think), but it can take a while for people like the Child Support agency to catch up with people and delayed payments would also cause problems - do find out about it, but don't rely on it.


verymiserable · 29/03/2003 14:53

I have a feeling that dp will suggest that we continue to live together for the sake of the children. He will argue that they will be very upset if we split up. I'm pretty sure that I couldn't live like this.

My friend has suggested though that I just sit tight, he works very long hours and without me nagging him to spend time at home, I would probably hardly ever see him. Is it possible to continue to live someone who doesn't seem to like you, for the sake of the kids?

OP posts:

lucy123 · 29/03/2003 15:11

verymiserable - it's a shame it's a Saturday as I'm sure there are other mumsnetters with more direct experience of this than me.

My advice, for what it's worth, is that sitting tight may work in the short term, but in the long term it will almost definately not work. I have friends whose parents stayed together "for the sake of the children" and all of them say it would have been better if their parents had split up (my parents are divorced, and though it was upsetting at the time, I think it would have been hell if they had stayed together).

And of course you must think of yourself too. I know I couldn't live with a man who was childish enough to not speak to me for a week. It's hard bringing up kids alone, but it really does sound like you would be happier.

I really think you should talk to him about all this. Point out that the way he (perhaps both of you) is carrying on is very upsetting for the children too and cannot continue. If he's concerned enough about the kids to contemplate staging togetherness for their sakes, then he may be more willing than you think to help you (well, them) out financially if you split. Alternatively, could you sit tight for a few months, but in the meantime find a part-time job so that you can save up a bit? (depends on the ages of your children I guess)

you really do have all my sympathy.


prufrock · 29/03/2003 15:36

verymiserable - I'm pretty sure that he has to continue paying at least something. You are contributing financially by looking after his kids so he can go out and earn money. I'm sure the CAB will be able to give you advice on the practical stuff - and I know other mumsnetters have been where you are so will be giving far better advice than this later.
If you really are sure that the relationship can't get better, then IMO you do need to get out. It's not better for kids if parentsstay together when they hate each other - better to have two happy parents living in seperate places than one home with sad people


WideWebWitch · 29/03/2003 15:59

Very miserable, I'm sorry you're so miserable. I don't have any legal experience but I do think he should be the one to leave the house, not you. You and the children should be able to stay I'm sure but you do need to get some legal advice. Prufrock is quite right, you DO contribute financially by bringing up the children and I agree with her and lucy123 that it isn't in the best interests of children for parents to stay together despite an unhappy relationship. So sorry, I guess I'm not being very constructive here but I don't have any magic answers, just sympathy for you and agreement with the others. I'll post more if I think of anything that might be useful.


verymiserable · 29/03/2003 16:17

I haven't told him what I've been thinking yet. I've just been feeling so trapped and obviously he knows that financially I am very dependent on him and that I'm unlikely to leave.

To be honest, I was very nasty last weekend. He was being his usual blood minded self and I was so infuriated I told him that at times I just wished he were dead. It just seemed that, that is the only way out of this situation. I do feel bad that I said it but I really don't think he cares what I think anyway. My opinion is of little importance to him.

It is so difficult to know what to do next, especially when communication has now dried up completely. I don't know how to bring it up and convince him that I'm serious.

OP posts:

fluffball · 29/03/2003 16:31

Hi fluffball here.
mine seems just like that theres no comunication and when there is it seems as if its all rude jokes and talk about work which i dont mind but when i need to discuss something i,am moaning,i dont know about yours but theres not even any action in the bedroom any more he just doesnt seem to under stand that i am devoted to him and the children,as he says i,ve changed since having them.


verymiserable · 29/03/2003 16:40

Hi fluffball

He is very wrapped up in his work, in fact that is his only real interest. IMO he seems to prefer spending time at work than time with us, which has been the main cause of our arguments.

With regard to action in the bedroom, we have always co-slept with our kids and quite often ended up changing beds in the middle of the night. Now he just goes straight to bed in the kids room.

I do get accused of nagging a lot, but I don't see it as nagging. I ask him to help me because I am struggling and need his help, not because I like going on at him.

He probably won't be home from work for another 3 or 4 hours but my stomach is already churning.

OP posts:

fluffball · 29/03/2003 16:47

Have you tryed sitting and having a heart to heart with him,i,ve found some times if you just dont say anything to them and let them come in, have there bath sit down have a rest and when the kids have gone to bed ask for a cuddle while your watching tv.
Suggest a night out just you and him ask family to look after the children for a night and go and spend a night in a hotel or something,so he has no excuse to sleep some where else,I understand money can make it differcult.


lilibet · 29/03/2003 17:58

Dear VM, are you me in a timewarp? I have three children and last year in September I plucked up the courage to leave my husband with my children. If you do a search on previous posts, I was posting before I left. The best thing that you can do is persuade your partner to leave, but you can't force him to leave unless he is violent. I am now in a much happier position even if I am about tuppence short of bankruptcy, my ex is still in the house and I am in rented property and still paying half the mortgage for the house that he is living in!! This situation will continue until our finances are sorted out, needless to say he is dragging his feet. I am in a different position because I am earning a wage, it goes no where, but it did mean that I can rent a house. You do need to see a solicitor, you can get a first initial interview free and will probably qualify for legal aid. The council will only pay rent on a private property up to the rent in a council house, where I live this is £65 per week, at the moment I pay £450 per month for a 3 bed semi. The CSA also act very slowly, mine has just come thru and I applied last September. Sorry if this seems all doom and gloom - I know that I made the right decision when I left, but it took me about 3 years to come to that decision, any sooner and I wouldn't have been ready. The children have responded really well to the situation, don't know what ages yours are but mine were 13, 5 and 9 when I left, they were all old enough to realise that Mum couldn't carry on in a house where Dad hit her and didn't speak to her. (BTW I did involve the police over the violence but because I didn't want to press charges I couldn't get him out of the house). Are you sure that there is nothing salvageable in your realtionship? Would marriage guidance be of any help to you at all they don't just talk to married couples? You said in a previous post that you are devoted to him, do you think that you could have a realtionship worth working for? I know its horrid when all the effort seems to come from one side, my ex didn't speak to me for over 3 years. Sorry that this is a bit rambling, and that I can offer no good news on the financial side. Keep in touch. Hugs!


verymiserable · 29/03/2003 20:08

Hi lilibet - Ithink it was fluffball who said she was devoted to her dh, not me. Unfortunately, I feel totally undevoted at the moment.

We did go to Relate and it was helpful but we thought we were doing ok and didn't go back and have now ended up in this mess.

Rented property is really expensive round here, about £650 for a 3 bed. My children are all still quite young 5, 2 and 18 months and I'm not sure how they would cope with it really.

I start typing and then lose track of what I want to say. Sorry if this is all a bit rambling.

OP posts:

alsomiserable · 29/03/2003 21:14

VM the similarities are uncanny.
Our kids are almost exactly the same ages as yours.
I no longer love my husband and have considered all the possibilities. I am not as brave as you. I could realistically manage without him except I am just not 100% sure it is the right thing to do.
Living in the same house but keeping out of each others way is more or less what we do but it is not really satisfactory. he went away on a work course for 5 days in January and although it was physically tough doing everything myself the atmosphere in the house was so much healthier than normal.
Huge sympathies, I really understand.


verymiserable · 29/03/2003 21:48


I'm not brave at all. I'm just trying to work out what I should do and what my options are, if any!

I know exactly what you mean about the atmosphere being better when they are not around. Dp got in from work about 15 mins ago and hasn't said a word to me yet. Luckily all the kids are asleep and can't see what a crap relationship we have.

I do find it difficult looking after my 3 sometimes and I end up getting very stressed. I think that part of this stress though comes from the knowledge that there should be someone here to help me with the tricky stuff. If I knew there was no one to rely on and it was totally down to me, I'm sure I would cope better. I wouldn't feel so let down.

It is sort of comforting to know that others are in the same position, iykwim. I think that I let myself get caught up in all these fairy tale images of what family life is like, when the reality is totally different. Can't help wanting the fairy tale though.

Please keep posting.

OP posts:

alsomiserable · 30/03/2003 02:21

VM I know what you mean about taking some comfort from others being in similar situations, not that you would wish it on anyone!
I am sort of torn between throwing all my eggs into the basket with him and really making an effort to have some kind of harmonious (if not exactly loving) relationship, or splitting up. At the moment I am in a frozen sort of limbo, and feel life is passing me by. I wonder if my expectations of relationships are far too high. I know I can be a real bitch and wonder if I could maybe make a supreme effort to get us back on track. Then he walks through the door and I feel something between mild irritation and total repulsion.
I have nothing to complain about as far as my mothers generation is concerned, ie he does not beat me and is not unfaithful!!
What do you think has gone wrong with your partner and you or should you never have got together in the first place?


verymiserable · 30/03/2003 09:04

Also miserable - I don't know what has gone wrong really. I think mainly it is his work - this is his main priority, then its the kids and then me, way down the list behind everything else.

He just doesn't seem interested in us and it feels like he resents the time he has to spend here. The kids love him and he is very good with them and he isn't a violent or unfaithful partner either. Although he was got a foul temper but this has actually calmed down over the years.

When I try to talk to him, I always get the same sort of answer. He thinks "I was ok for a while, and now I've changed back". What I've changed back into I'm not sure, but its not someone he likes anyway.

I'm not really sure why we got together. We were very happy in the beginning (as you generally are) but he did have a terrible temper then and was very unsociable (he still is). He doesn't really like going out socialising and on the rare occasion we do go somewhere he normally moans like hell before hand, although will cheer up when we get there.

Someone asked me yesterday, if I could continue to live with him but make an effort to go out and about with the kids and build a life that doesn't really involve him. I'm not sure if I've got the confidence to do this or not though.

I was surprised to find that he had actually got a card and some flowers for the kids to give to me this morning. He's gone to work though so my friend and I are taking the kids out today.

What do you think went wrong with your husband?

OP posts:

verymiserable · 31/03/2003 19:59

Can anyone tell me, if I decide to leave can he make me start paying half the mortgage, even though I have never contributed before? I have a feeling that financially he will make things as difficult as possible for me, so that I will have to stay here.

He hasn't spoken to me since Friday night and that was just a couple of words. My ds woke up this morning screaming and very upset because he hadn't seen his dad for days. I just don't know about anything anymore.

OP posts:

sobernow · 31/03/2003 21:11

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

lucy123 · 31/03/2003 21:27

sobernow, I think you're right, but i wanted to add that "jointly and severally liable" means that the mortgage company will chase either one of you for the money and won't give two hoots about your situation.

verymiserable - if your p decided to just pay his half of the mortgage, and you didn't pay your half, they could still repossess the house (but they may have to go to court in order to do this - you need to check your mortgage contract) - so he would be cutting off his nose to spite his face.

Like Sobernow, I also think you need to get some expert advice - and a solicitor may be your best bet (as you have to wait for ages for the CAB sometimes). However, i think that if you tell him how you feel, and let him stew about it for a while, he may realise that the sensible thing - and the best thing for the kids - is for him to move out. It sounds like things couldn't get any worse.


alsomiserable · 01/04/2003 00:28

vm I don't know how we got to this situation but it is spookily similar to yours. In a funny way as we have grown apart and as my love for the children grows I feel I don't need him so much /at all. He knows this ( I have never actually said it of course)and it can't be good for his self esteem...he gets huffy...I like him even less...the cycle goes on and I don't know how to break it.


Clarinet60 · 01/05/2003 15:54

Also and Very, I have just discovered this thread and I'm wondering how you are both doing.

As you may have seen from other threads, I am teetering on the brink of a similar situation. I think I am further back down the line than either of you, as DH and I do still have some good times, but the bad bouts are becoming more frequent.

I hope things have either resolved or miraculously improved since you last posted.


susanb · 01/05/2003 20:24

Hi all

I was also wondering how you were all getting on, hope things have also improved for you. I've got no real experience of splitting with a partner with my son but have had big ups and downs in my relationship with my partner. I know how it feels to feel completely trapped and 'is this all there is to my life?'

My partner is actually pretty good - he's never violent, rarely bad tempered, a great dad, a a real all round nice guy but due to problems I've had (PND, etc) its put a huge strain on our relationship. Our ds was also unplanned, and although I love him more than anything in the whole world and I don't for a second regret having him, it has had a damaging impact on our relationship in that we were only living together for a few months before I fell pregnant and obviously we have had far less time with each other.

Just to say also, that my cousin who has 2 kids and had been married for years, took the plunge a couple of years ago and split with her husband, because they'd grown apart. Although its been really difficult she is a far happier person now and managed to stay in the family home. In fact, she's since met someone else and given birth to her first daughter but perhaps thats looking too far ahead!!

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