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  1. #1

    Unhappy HELP - Would you marry him?

    I need suggestions on what to do in this situation. I’m engaged to a man I’ve been with for about two and a half years. He’s a divorced dad with two boys. When we started dating, he was the every other weekend dad. Even though I hadn’t ever wanted to have children of my own, I was cool with his boys, they were cool with me, and I think we got along well with that arrangement.

    I moved in with him about one year ago. Right away, his ex-wife calls him in hysterics saying she can’t deal with the younger son anymore (he has emotional problems that sometimes lead to aggression and is ADHD). So, he came to live with us. It was difficult for me to literally become an overnight parent to a boy (currently age 10) who had these kinds of problems, but I did adjust after a short time and was dealing ok with it. Happy with the arrangement? That’s debateable, but I was dealing ok.

    About two or three months ago the older boy (currently age 13) said he couldn’t stand living with his Mom anymore and wanted to come live with us. So, he did. I had no idea this boy is an even worse case than the younger son until he was living with us – because he’s “sneaky” about being bad and he’s usually quiet, he hides it very well. But our home-life and our little family has been a mess since he moved in. He seems to do whatever he can to hurt everyone’s feelings in the house with no remorse what-so-ever. I wasn’t originally a target, but as I have had to begin to back-up Dad’s enforcement of certain punishments, like grounding, I have now started to become a target, as well.

    I’m trying to keep things kind of general here so that I don’t write a big novel, but the main idea is that I’m at my wit’s end. I *love* my fiancé – and I truly do feel like he’s the man I want to be with for the rest of my life. But I dread coming home every day because of the kids, who aren’t mine and who I, therefore, have to parent without getting the respect and love that a normal parent gets – and who unfortunately were not raised well up to this point and have *a lot* to learn about how to behave like normal individuals. I have been on the verge of leaving the relationship for a little while now, but then once every couple of weeks my fiancé and I will get to have a “night out” to ourselves and I’ll fall in love with him all over again. I don’t want to give him up, but the next thing you know, I’m right back to wanting to leave because of the behavior and hurtful actions of the boys.

    I’m so torn about the entire situation and have no idea what to do here. Any recommendations, thoughts, or opinions would be much appreciated.



  2. #2
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    This man comes with kids, and strings attached. You have known this all along from the get go. It is reality now.

    Get married, and make it work with the children, or move out right away. Either sign up 100% or sign off 100%.

    The weekend is coming, so decide. Dedicate your life to these kids, or move this weekend.

    My 2 cents and some change.


    70 members found this post helpful.

  3. #3
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    I wouldn't get married until the problem is addressed. Whether that means behavioral therapy for both children, or it means you live separately for the next 8 years until youngest is out of the house-- whatever.

    But I think you need to have a frank conversation with your Fiance about this and also probably see a couples counselor together about it.

    I don't think bio mom has a right to just dump behavioral problems on you. She gets an out, but you don't? Not fair. They're her children, not yours by blood or even by marriage at this point.


    23 members found this post helpful.

  4. #4
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    A few more years of raising kids, verses a lifetime without him. Think about it.

    I'm not trying to make light of your situation, I was in it myself only in reverse. Two kids from a previous, and I met my now husband when they were 11 and 9. He took them on, and it wasnt always easy, now they are grown and out of the house although we did "replace" them with two more.

    I'm ever so grateful that he stuck with me through the good, bad and sometimes ugly of child rearing.


    7 members found this post helpful.

  5. #5
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    But I dread coming home every day because of the kids, who aren’t mine and who I, therefore, have to parent without getting the respect and love that a normal parent gets – and who unfortunately were not raised well up to this point and have *a lot* to learn about how to behave like normal individuals.
    Do you believe that children believe their parents, "normal" or otherwise, are entitled to love and respect? This is part of being a parent: you do things that are good for them (like presenting a unified front alongside their father), which they hate, and they resent you for it, rage and scream and say they hate you...etc.
    Disclaimer: My mom told me that people might look at my name and think I had an addiction other than horses. I don't; his name was Bravado.


    8 members found this post helpful.

  6. #6
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    family counseling.
    Quote Originally Posted by Mozart View Post
    Personally, I think the moderate use of shock collars in training humans should be allowed.


    22 members found this post helpful.

  7. #7
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    If the children have issues, it's just as much your fiances fault as it is their biological mothers. Maybe the fact that these young boys only saw their father 2 weekends a month could be a reason why they have these issues indeed.

    If you love your fiance, you must embrace his kids, their issues and everyones baggage if you want to be together.

    Otherwise, move out and move on.


    23 members found this post helpful.

  8. #8
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    You are in a unique position to help these children who have been damaged through no fault of their own. Only you know whether it is in your heart to do so. When you agreed to marry him, you said yes also to his children whether or not you realized it.

    Good luck to you,
    PKN


    8 members found this post helpful.

  9. #9
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    These boys are part of his life FOREVER. You either want in, or you don't. Either one of those decisions is OK.

    If these boys are difficult now, they will not miraculously become well adjusted adults at the age of eighteen and suddenly move out to live independent and productive lives. Make sure you are not deluding yourself about the level of commitment required to raise children.
    "Can you imagine what I would do if I could do all I can?" Sun Tzu, The Art of War
    Rainy: http://tinyurl.com/kj7x53c
    Stash: http://tinyurl.com/mmm3p4e


    18 members found this post helpful.

  10. #10
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    If I had to post asking this question on a message board, I would know it meant no for me.


    These kids deserve a loving parent team, no matter how "difficult" they are. You seem to see them as an unwanted burden - and in that case, you and they are better off not in each others' lives.
    I dread coming home every day because of the kids, who aren’t mine
    They are yours now, too, if you're there living with them. You have to either accept that or leave. It's cruel to the kids to do otherwise.

    And yes, your needs and wants matter, but sorry - when you're talking about minors, I'm always going to think they matter more, even if what they need/deserve is appropriate discipline when they haven't been getting enough or help dealing with emotions or whatever.
    My horse is a dressage diva so I don't have to be.

    Quote Originally Posted by katarine
    If you have a fat gay horse that likes Parelli, you're really screwed


    20 members found this post helpful.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by soloudinhere View Post
    I don't think bio mom has a right to just dump behavioral problems on you. She gets an out, but you don't? Not fair. They're her children, not yours by blood or even by marriage at this point.

    Why not? Sounds like bio dad had been getting a free pass before.
    Auventera Two:Some women would eat their own offspring if they had some dipping sauce.


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  12. #12
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    Me, personally, probably not if this were how I felt now:
    "the main idea is that I’m at my wit’s end. I *love* my fiancé – and I truly do feel like he’s the man I want to be with for the rest of my life. But I dread coming home every day."

    It doesn't sound like it's going to get any better.
    A friend told me I was delusional. I almost fell off my unicorn.


    5 members found this post helpful.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by RockinHorse View Post
    Why not? Sounds like bio dad had been getting a free pass before.
    He wasn't. He had them every other weekend until one day she called and said "Can't do it anymore, all yours" that's not how this really works. Or at least it's not how it SHOULD work.

    What's best for the kids is one thing but just "can't deal with it" isn't an out. If the OP doesn't get one because SHE can't deal with it, then mom doesn't get one because she can't and got lucky enough to get divorced and provide herself an out.


    8 members found this post helpful.

  14. #14
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    Sounds like this is a phase all parents have to deal with. Life isn't necessarily wonderful all the time with kids. On the one hand I am sympathetic to 'what about me? and what I want in this relationship?' and on the other I'm thinking you should've accepted the man and his kids are a package deal. The universe is letting you know the reality of what the package deal entails before you get married. That's a gift, because part of being in love is weathering the storms life presents to you. Is he supportive and helpful? Are you guys a team? Do you seek comfort with each other because of the ordeal? Life sucks for you and it sucks for him too. I'm sure he doesn't want to lose you because of his kids, but if you can't commit to being a parent to his kids, then the hard truth is you shouldn't be involved with him any more.
    This it be all wot we want in life, wenn peoples dey loff us. ~ Willem


    7 members found this post helpful.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by OnThinIce View Post
    Sounds like this is a phase all parents have to deal with. Life isn't necessarily wonderful all the time with kids. On the one hand I am sympathetic to 'what about me? and what I want in this relationship?' and on the other I'm thinking you should've accepted the man and his kids are a package deal. The universe is letting you know the reality of what the package deal entails before you get married. That's a gift, because part of being in love is weathering the storms life presents to you. Is he supportive and helpful? Are you guys a team? Do you seek comfort with each other because of the ordeal? Life sucks for you and it sucks for him too. I'm sure he doesn't want to lose you because of his kids, but if you can't commit to being a parent to his kids, then the hard truth is you shouldn't be involved with him any more.
    Thanks everyone for all of the replies so far. To answer your questions: He is very supportive. We try to work as a team as best as we can - I take my cues from him on how to handle them when he's not there to do so. And we do seek comfort with each other, but I think this is kind of guarded and not as much as it should be.

    I think we're both trying to deal with our own emotions as much as we can without putting extra "burden" on the other. We did have a sit down, just he and I, about a month ago. He knew I was incredibly unhappy and we talked through everything. He told me he understands why I'm not happy, doesn't fault me for it at all because he knows how difficult it is. He admitted he himself can't handle being in the "step-parent" role with women he's dated, so he wouldn't blame me if I decided I couldn't do it anymore. He doesn't want me to leave and loves me, but made sure I had no illusions that 18 is a magic number when they leave from your life - they'll always be around.

    I'm still mulling all of this over in my head and I keep going back and forth between wanting to stay to try to help these kids out and continue my life with my fiance, and then starting to feel resentful about the whole thing which is NOT good. I'm just not sure what in the world to do, but I really love the idea of counseling that's been thrown out by a couple of you.


    2 members found this post helpful.

  16. #16
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    You and he go to counseling first. And be honest and say what you've said here and admit that you don't have the tools to cope without help and support.

    As far as family counseling, well, it may help that the kids go on their own first and you work with a family therapist after the adults have gotten some traction on their adult problems first and the kids have gotten some traction on the kid issues, and then you discuss how to work together as a family.


    9 members found this post helpful.

  17. #17
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    A friend with one child remarried, and Hubby had three children, but was a weekend parent only. Within two years my friend had three full time live-in teenagers, and was pregnant. She still says that if she knew she would be a full-time mom to five kids, four of whom were teenagers, she would have stayed a single parent to one. You are the only one who can decide if you will continue the relationship, and be a fulltime parent, but if you can't do this, then leave. You have to be totally honest with yourself, and a family counselor might be a great help with this. Don't count on the parenting stopping when the children hit eighteen either, because some kids never leave the nest. You're not a bad person, but you do need to decide if this is how you want to spend years living. Being a parent or stepparent isn't for everyone, and there's nothing wrong with that, if that's honestly how you feel.
    You can't fix stupid-Ron White


    3 members found this post helpful.

  18. #18
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    I was in your situation 27 years ago except that we were already married when the ex decided she couldn't handle the 2 boys anymore. They were 13 and 14 at the time and always in trouble, a lovely time to become an instant full time mother.

    Not going to lie, there were times when I wanted to walk but I loved the man and his kids were part of the deal. I wanted to make a good difference in their lives because they were pretty much left to raise themselves until they came to live with us.

    Now that they are grown with families of their own, I have been thanked and apologized to many times for being there thru it all and getting them to adulthood.

    It's a decision only you can make, is it worth it or not. My husband has made my dreams come true so it was worth it to me.
    "The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated." --Ghandi


    14 members found this post helpful.

  19. #19
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    The ol saying is if there is any question at all then DON'T Marry. He has 2 kids that will never change. When you have kids it is a until your grave commitment. He can get out of this. So the real question is if you want to sign up or not. I think you realize this, hence your question to wed or not. I think you have been doing alot of looking into yourself and asking can I, or do I want to do this. My advice continue to search inside yourself until you do have your answer. Family consuling would be benefical to all involved regardless of your decision.


    6 members found this post helpful.

  20. #20
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    I agree that you will always have children, but they should eventually grow up and leave the nest...so it's not going to be this way forever. The better set up for life by their parents the better (and sooner) they will make their own way.



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