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Thread: Faith Commitment Action

  1. #51
    Platinum Member IAmFCA's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Batya33
    He sounds very patient, tolerant and understanding.
    Well, yes, its extraordinary.

    Also, not a parent, and that really is a double edged sword. He has resources of a singe adult - extra cash flow, extra time, extra brain space. But so hard to accept how hard it is to be away from home, or that he doesn't understand how hard it is. Understandable!

  2. #52
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    Originally Posted by IAmFCA
    Well, yes, its extraordinary.

    Also, not a parent, and that really is a double edged sword. He has resources of a singe adult - extra cash flow, extra time, extra brain space. But so hard to accept how hard it is to be away from home, or that he doesn't understand how hard it is. Understandable!
    I wasn't a parent till age 42 and I got it - I was an aunt, had a lot of experience with kids and just basic common sense and empathy. On the other hand I didn't always get the reciprocity when my work schedule (my "baby" at the time) was so unpredictable and stressful - because I was "single" some thought I had no responsibilities and had no family. It goes both ways. I do remember two incidents as a new mom with one particular friend - in one case she wanted me to leave my sleeping baby alone in the apartment and go in an elevator to the lobby so I could meet her boyfriend who was picking her up -she didn't get that there was no way I would ever do such a thing. And another time I asked her to hold him for a minute so I could pee, she hesitated and I didn't get how strong her hesitation was. When I handed him to her on the couch she put him to the side and he almost rolled off (luckily I was right there). So yes she was clueless. In other cases, parents didn't get it (since we all parent differently) and non-parents went the extra mile and did get it.

    There is a point where I think parents wear the mantle of "you don't get it -you have the freedom to come and go" to an extent that can get too much - so just IMO as a fellow parent please balance it a bit and empathize about his responsibilities as an adult. And just neutrally repeat your schedule and responsibilities but not as if yours are more onerous than his. You don't know if that's true (and even if it is I don't think it would be effective to even imply it or state the parent/non-parent difference.

  3. #53
    Platinum Member IAmFCA's Avatar
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    All good points, Batya.

    The way it comes up is about time together. Bottom line, before him, I was home more often. It's a hard reality when time has to be meted out to one or the other. He gets it... but not quite. He knew I had dated others etc and assumed I was out a lot, but I didn't date like that and not so frequently. And he is stuck on the outside of our family fence because my teens are holding him in purgatory for a while - which is fine! It means my time is split between them, and of course they win. He is learning how bottom line it is; either I am home being their homemaker, or I'm not.

  4. #54
    Platinum Member IAmFCA's Avatar
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    This morning he said I have a new appreciation for the conflict you feel.

    Ahhh how I love a man that learns.

    I appreciate how hard it is for a man who culturally identifies with the provide protect profess tenets of manhood to step into a life so fully formed before he arrived. No matter how much he saw it get made and loves its contents, if he wants to shape it, he has to accept certain constants that predate him. That must be a new sort of challenge...

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  6. #55
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    Originally Posted by IAmFCA
    All good points, Batya.

    The way it comes up is about time together. Bottom line, before him, I was home more often. It's a hard reality when time has to be meted out to one or the other. He gets it... but not quite. He knew I had dated others etc and assumed I was out a lot, but I didn't date like that and not so frequently. And he is stuck on the outside of our family fence because my teens are holding him in purgatory for a while - which is fine! It means my time is split between them, and of course they win. He is learning how bottom line it is; either I am home being their homemaker, or I'm not.
    And this is why I didn't date single parents (with the exception of two dates with one -until he told me that if I ever stayed over his kids likely would be there, no thanks, and I dated someone for 3 months whose ex girlfriend was pregnant with their child -I couldn't handle it after the baby was born). Anyway - if he really doesn't get it compare it to a situation of unpredictable work and travel schedules - does he have friends with kids? Siblings with kids -his cluelessness surprises me.

    I don't get why his preconceive notions about manhood are in conflict with your situation -isn't part of providing/protecting having strong family values? I get that he is not yet involved with your family but surely if his instinct is to provide and protect wouldn't he get that in the context of family and be supportive of your need to make your kids your top priority?

  7. #56
    Platinum Member IAmFCA's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Batya33
    And this is why I didn't date single parents (with the exception of two dates with one -until he told me that if I ever stayed over his kids likely would be there, no thanks, and I dated someone for 3 months whose ex girlfriend was pregnant with their child -I couldn't handle it after the baby was born). Anyway - if he really doesn't get it compare it to a situation of unpredictable work and travel schedules - does he have friends with kids? Siblings with kids -his cluelessness surprises me.

    I don't get why his preconceive notions about manhood are in conflict with your situation -isn't part of providing/protecting having strong family values? I get that he is not yet involved with your family but surely if his instinct is to provide and protect wouldn't he get that in the context of family and be supportive of your need to make your kids your top priority?
    He is completely supportive of my family, and completely supportive of making our relationship work. In terms of time, that has seemed to him to be in conflict. He is starting to get the concept of acceptance. He wishes he could jump right in, show up for birthdays and graduations, support them at sporting events, as well as the more mundane drive them places as needed, spend a weekend day out in nature, make a family dinner. He gets it. I told him we can be thankful they are neither starving for attention nor easy to redirect, and in that sense "hard to get".

    The deeper issue is one of them is using their dad's low level of participation as a high water mark, as if someone else's attention that may exceed that benchmark would challenge her affection for her father. Of course, that is not the case; dad is dad is dad is dad. She recognizes my guy's kindness, but rejects it too, because she doesn't get it from her father and isn't going to, and therefore doesn't want it from anyone else either.

    Am thinking on that one!

  8. #57
    Platinum Member IAmFCA's Avatar
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    Hmmmm let me say this differently.

    My challenge is that I want other people to accept a relationship with someone, and that is MY issue. My kids don't have a problem. I think they are letting an opportunity pass them by, but they know it will still be there later, and if it is, they will avail themselves of it. If it isn't, they will be glad to have let it go.

  9. #58
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    Originally Posted by IAmFCA
    He is completely supportive of my family, and completely supportive of making our relationship work. In terms of time, that has seemed to him to be in conflict. He is starting to get the concept of acceptance. He wishes he could jump right in, show up for birthdays and graduations, support them at sporting events, as well as the more mundane drive them places as needed, spend a weekend day out in nature, make a family dinner. He gets it. I told him we can be thankful they are neither starving for attention nor easy to redirect, and in that sense "hard to get".

    The deeper issue is one of them is using their dad's low level of participation as a high water mark, as if someone else's attention that may exceed that benchmark would challenge her affection for her father. Of course, that is not the case; dad is dad is dad is dad. She recognizes my guy's kindness, but rejects it too, because she doesn't get it from her father and isn't going to, and therefore doesn't want it from anyone else either.

    Am thinking on that one!
    So he is supportive but in a way on his terms - supportive if you are ok and they are ok with him being involved in their lives and activities but less interested in sacrificing time with you when you need to spend time with your kids. I'm not criticizing and it does show, on his part, that he wants things a certain way and with certain timing even though it is your kids, they are teenagers and it's up to them whether they want to interact with your boyfriend. It's great that he accepts that his preference as to how to be supportive isn't consistent right now with the reality of your family situation.

  10. #59
    Platinum Member IAmFCA's Avatar
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    Tonight he took me to a wonderful put-on-a-dress sort of dinner, complete with champagne course, different wines as we went along. He encouraged me to keep me phone out so I would know when they got home, and then he brought me home soon after.they were home. It wasn't his intention at the outset, but he changed course during dinner. He said, earlier today, thank you for helping me see that it is like a zero sum game. He is getting it.

    I got the whole fabulous teen download. So happy.

  11. #60
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    Originally Posted by IAmFCA
    Tonight he took me to a wonderful put-on-a-dress sort of dinner, complete with champagne course, different wines as we went along. He encouraged me to keep me phone out so I would know when they got home, and then he brought me home soon after.they were home. It wasn't his intention at the outset, but he changed course during dinner. He said, earlier today, thank you for helping me see that it is like a zero sum game. He is getting it.

    I got the whole fabulous teen download. So happy.
    Sounds like a lovely dinner!

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