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Thread: Girlfriend has Issues with my Parenting

  1. #1

    Girlfriend has Issues with my Parenting

    Hi,

    I am looking for some advice about my relationships, hopefully drawing from others that have been in a similar position! So ...

    I am 34 and my girlfriend is 28 (no kids of her own). I have a 10 year old daughter from a previous relationship, I was with my ex for 8 years, had my daughter with her but we split almost 5 years ago. We co parent my daughter and have her half the week each.

    I have been with my current girlfriend for 3 years and over that time there have been a number of issues all relating to my daughter I.e there is no time for us, everything has to be planned around my daughter etc I have made changes to both mine and my daughters life to try and make her happier and it does for a time but last night, I came home from work and picking my daughter up and my girlfriend was in a mood (as she is a lot and she says its just the person she is), I said hi, how was work etc etc which was met with pretty much no response at all, it made me and my daughter feel a little awkward and that side of things is not an isolated incident.

    Later in the night a row erupts as apparently my daughter walks all over me, she's behind where she should be as a person, I do too much for her (all I did was offer her a drink and some cake) ... I feel like I'm walking on eggshells all the time! I tell her that's just the type of person I am ... I offer my girlfriend a drink, something to eat, ask if she's ok etc.

    I point blank refuse to change who i am as a person but obviously now i am questioning everything ... does she have a point? Shouldn't she just support me? I try my best by both my girlfriend and my daughter.

    Worth noting that my daughter loves her but she obviously doesnt see what I do. My girlfriend also gets angry when I don't agree with her points and can become quite childlike I.e raising her voice through gritted teeth which makes the whole thing worse!

    Thanks in advance.
    Last edited by Troubled5; 04-13-2019 at 06:04 AM.

  2. #2
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    I don't think she is the right person to be in your daughter's life. Kids don't "get" dating -they get attached. She is overstepping her boundaries of being a good friend/good host at most to your daughter. I think your daughter should come first and assert appropriate boundaries with your girlfriend about her "advice" -"thanks for your input and if I want parenting advice I will ask you, ok?" My son is 10 and yes if I needed a night out I would get a sitter if needed -that's totally fine -but I think you're trying to do your "best" with both but not considering that your daughter should come first -and you as the parent shouldn't have to be subjected to criticism from an outsider.

    It would be different if you were married and she were the stepmother -a little different -but I would steer clear of having this person get more involved in your life. Is there a part of you that likes being criticized and treated this way? It's easier than appropriately asserting yourself.

  3. #3
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    There is nothing in your post to provide evidence of how you treat either your gf or your child.

    You say all you did was offer your child a drink and cake.
    But I seriously doubt that is what your gfís complaint is about. If you truly believe it is then you have two children under your care.

    It does sound like you have compromised though.

    Has your gf compromised or acknowledged yours?

    Do you feel you over compensate for not having your daughter full time?

  4. #4
    Platinum Member Wiseman2's Avatar
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    Is it her house, your house or do you co-own/co-rent? It's not your gf's call how to parent your child. Never defend it or entertain that discussion. She knew the deal when you started dating and also when you moved in together. This woman doesn't sound like a healthy influence on your child. Gfs come and go, this is your innocent child's life that a 10 y/o has no control over. Your daughter is already suffering the collateral damage of your split from her mother being shuttled back and forth etc. And now you are subjecting this innocent kid to more collateral damage by letting this gf run the show with her moods?
    Originally Posted by Troubled5
    We co parent my daughter and have her half the week each.

    I have been with my current girlfriend for 3 years
    I came home from work and picking my daughter up and my girlfriend was in a mood. it made me and my daughter feel a little awkward and that side of things is not an isolated incident.

  5.  

  6. #5
    Thank you all for your feedback! I think in the most part it mirrors how I am feeling!

    To clarify, we live together in mine and my daughters home which I own. And to further clarify, my daughter will ALWAYS come first and that's what annoys her the most I think, my daughter is and will always be the most important person in my life and she knows that.

    I feel like my girlfriend would 'do things differently' should she have a child but I genuinely don't feel she is even ready for a child based on how she makes me feel about doing, what I feel, is the right thing by mine!

    I know things aren't perfect, nothing ever is but my daughter is incredibly sweet, genuine and most importantly, happy so I really don't see why she feels the way she does which is probably my only fault!

    Also, based on the scenario described above, yesterday all I genuinely offered was a drink and some cake and I was doing too much apparently although I take your point as obviously, to her, the picture was much bigger!

    I hate the situation, I hate questioning who I am although I don't let it affect my daughter in any way. I do love my gf but I genuinely feel she would be happier elsewhere.

    It's so hard to describe on here how things are and how it makes me feel, but how can me being me and making my daughters life as happy as possible be taken in such a negative way??

    She doesnt get my side of things no and yes I probably do overcompensate at times, but never in terms of the behaviour I deem appropriate or anything like that. It's more because we go to the park or swimming (without the gf) or out for lunch somewhere that is also suitable to a 10 year old.

    I'm not perfect by any means, I just do my best by both of them and seem to get lynched for it.

    Thanks again

  7. #6
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    If your daughter comes first please don't subject her to staying with you when your girlfriend is there -this woman is not her mother, is not married to you and it's too confusing to your daughter especially at this age and especially since she can sense how critical your girlfriend is.

    Your daughter is 10. You cannot tell me that you're unfamiliar with people finding ways to criticize parents in every which way -not all people of course but parents are easy targets and it's so easy to give criticism from the outside, too. You are the father -show your daughter and yourself confidence in your parenting choices. Welcome input when the input is from someone you respect, admire and who has your best interests at heart. Like her teachers for example or a school counselor or a close family friend. But you have to make hard choices. When my son was 9 - guess what -I fed him breakfast on school mornings so I'd get a scrambled egg in him before a long day at school - yes, I fed him (and had done that for years -we ended that about 7 months ago). Can you just see how I would be lambasted for feeding a 9 year old?? But we choose our battles among many battles and others just get a snapshot and some of those people will point fingers and don't understand that god gave u two ears but only one mouth. Oh and my son drank from a baby bottle until he was 2 -- but in my driving-obsessed city he'd been on several different subway systems regularly by the time he was 4 and by the time he was 6 likely could have gotten to his home by public transportation when his peers' parents couldn't imagine using a subway rather than a vehicle.

    I can go on and on but the point is - your girlfriend is judging you and giving you unsolicited input. You are enabling it by allowing her to live with you and your daughter which in my opinion (giving it because you asked) is not in your daughter's best interests.

    I'd look into books like How to Talk So Children Will Listen and Janet Lansbury's teachings and Love and Logic and Scream Free Parenting (not about screaming) if you want helpful parenting input. Not your girlfriend.

  8. #7
    Platinum Member Wiseman2's Avatar
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    Why did your gf move in knowing you're a single dad with 50/50 custody? Also make sure the gf is not stuck babysitting, caring for your daughter, making her food, doing her laundry, etc. Just as it's not her call to tell you how to parent, it's not her job to be the nanny/babysitter. Make sure you are with your daughter at all times and do all and any extra work that comes from having her there, just as if you were a single dad.

    Your gf clearly resents you and your daughter, and it's not about "a piece of cake" and you already know that. So make sure your gf is more than an unpaid nanny/housekeeper and make sure you are pulling your weight childcare wise. Likewise, make sure you parent how you and the child's mother sees fit. Always keep in mind that this is not your gf's child, both in responsibility and who calls the shots. Take much more on with regard to childcare/extra housework, cooking, etc.. See if that eases the resentment. Other than kicking the gf out, that's all you can try to improve. Face the obvious resentment head-on.
    Originally Posted by Troubled5
    we live together in mine and my daughters home which I own.

    all I genuinely offered was a drink and some cake and I was doing too much apparently although I take your point as obviously, to her, the picture was much bigger

  9. #8
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    You sound like a great guy to me and a great father but I think you missed a point I made?

    ďAlso, based on the scenario described above, yesterday all I genuinely offered was a drink and some cake and I was doing too much apparently although I take your point as obviously, to her, the picture was much bigger!

    I hate the situation, I hate questioning who I am although I don't let it affect my daughter in any way. I do love my gf but I genuinely feel she would be happier elsewhere.Ē

    Yes all you did was offer your daughter a drink and a cake.
    I didnít suggest that that was a bigger deal to your gf.
    Instead my suggestion is was that a last straw for your gf?
    Did you offer your gf to get her a drink and cake while you up and getting them?

    You also say that you donít let the situation affect your daughter in any way.
    How smart is your daughter? If she is even average , donít you believe she can pick up on animosity between you and your gf?

    I am sitting on the fence here. I believe you want the best for both your gf and daughter. But Iím just not sure that either are getting that? Despite your wishes

  10. #9
    Thanks that makes sense.

    To clarify, I do everything I did prior to meeting my gf. I get up in the morning with my daughter while she stays in bed, I make her breakfast, tell her to shower, go to bed etc etc, my gf is in no way a nanny and i make sure of that because she is my daughter.

    I guess i just struggle with why I am questioned and why she thinks she knows best and shows next to no understanding! She says 'because you are being walked all over' when chances are, it is my gf doing exactly that!

    The reason she moved in is because she never really showed this side of her prior to moving in, not the judgemental side of things anyway! She was around me and my daughter for long enough way before moving in to know exactly who we are as a family.

    Totally agree, neither are getting the best from me because I'm being torn in two with my daughter always coming out on top which is how it should be! My daughter is bright and I have no doubt she picks up on it and I don't want that.

    I offer everyone a drink, something to eat etc

  11. #10
    Platinum Member Wiseman2's Avatar
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    How happy is your gf in the periphery of "your family" vs you 2 and your daughter acting like a household/family? Do you know your gf's hopes, expectations, etc with regard to marrying, starting her own family, etc? Ask her. Try to get to the root of the resentment rather than continually circling around the "she's critical, she doesn't understand, she's jealous" thing. Clearly that's not solving issues and adding to your unease as well as your daughter's discomfort. If you really think your gf is a selfish witch then it's time to part ways.

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