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Thread: Family life falling apart

  1. #21
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    Originally Posted by MercMan
    Thank you Bluecastle. Very interesting, eye opening and though provoking.

    It's interesting that you say that our chemistry is bringing out the negatives in each other.
    When we first got together, everything was fun - we would always we doing something having fun - we wanted to be together all the time and when we were not together we would be talking to each other on the phone all of the time. But over the last 3 or so years we've hardly done anything together. There has been a massive change in our relationship for a long while, and long before she was pregnant. I'm trying to think back to wondering what is was that changed it - and if I can identify that - can we both make positive changes to rectify the problems
    The problem is that you two did not adjust and grow together as a family. You made two children, but didn't get married and adjust to a stable family life where you could still have loads of fun albeit with adjustments for child care. You don't need to think or overthink about "what changed" -that's passive. If I were you I would take action to co-parent your children in the most positive way for the children possible and then secondarily consider whether you want to be in a stable romantic relationship with her that includes being married and living together as a family -if you don't want that and don't want that for your children then I'd focus on co-parenting. You don't "rectify" a "problem" by thinking about what triggered the initial growing apart years ago. Years ago you weren't a father to two children. Now you are. They come first. Years ago she wasn't the mother of your children. So even if you could figure out what happened years ago it would have little to do with whatever is going on now. Certainly if it had been a traumatic event involving abuse or a serious illness, like that, you would know. Don't look for a needle in a haystack. Your kids deserve for you to look right now at what's going as an adult father.

  2. #22

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    Bluecastle, your last post has really got me thinking. In particular about sacrifices. I use the word sacrifice because that's the word she uses a lot.

    The problem I have with these "sacrifices" is that she says that I should want to spend quality time with her and the children - yes I would love that - but we don't. I'm just sat there with her family, not being able to be myself with my children. Sat there with her family, when she will not allow my family to see my children even once a month. She will not allow my family to see my children whatsoever. I am not trusted with my children. She will not allow me to take my children out of the house.

    Yesterday for example - there I am sat in my usual seat while a rubbish game show is on TV. She was feeding the youngest and then got up tyo go to the toilet, rather than passing him to me, she gave him to her mum. I only got to see my son later in the evening when her mum wasn't in the room. Yet I must be there all the time to help out. Whenever I have a spare moment, I must be there, sat in the living room waiting to be told off for interacting with my child.

  3. #23
    Platinum Member smackie9's Avatar
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    Why not give this one last chance and live together at your own place away from mum and everyone else. I feel this is necessary, so you two are forced to depend on each other like you should be doing. This will form a bond as a couple, and that is what is missing here. Sure there will be issues, but it will be up to you two to work through it no one else. Now combine that will counseling, but the right counseling. Find one the works on communication and teach you two how to communicate with each other, and let you both learn how to work out your problems. Using a counselor to mediate is no different that seeing a divorce lawyer. That is why you are not accomplishing much. Your expectations are in the wrong place. They are not there to solve your personal issues, because that is not what you need to work on. It's all about communication. Communication and understanding each other is key for a relationship to last the long haul.

  4. #24
    Platinum Member smackie9's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by MercMan

    Yesterday for example - there I am sat in my usual seat while a rubbish game show is on TV. She was feeding the youngest and then got up tyo go to the toilet, rather than passing him to me, she gave him to her mum. I only got to see my son later in the evening when her mum wasn't in the room. Yet I must be there all the time to help out. Whenever I have a spare moment, I must be there, sat in the living room waiting to be told off for interacting with my child.
    I'm just flabbergasted that her mother allows this behavior. She is enabling her daughter. Why hasn't anyone put their foot down? Is everyone that afraid of your fiance? She's got you all under her thumb.

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  6. #25

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    Originally Posted by Batya33
    The problem is that you two did not adjust and grow together as a family. You made two children, but didn't get married and adjust to a stable family life where you could still have loads of fun albeit with adjustments for child care. You don't need to think or overthink about "what changed" -that's passive. If I were you I would take action to co-parent your children in the most positive way for the children possible and then secondarily consider whether you want to be in a stable romantic relationship with her that includes being married and living together as a family -if you don't want that and don't want that for your children then I'd focus on co-parenting. You don't "rectify" a "problem" by thinking about what triggered the initial growing apart years ago. Years ago you weren't a father to two children. Now you are. They come first. Years ago she wasn't the mother of your children. So even if you could figure out what happened years ago it would have little to do with whatever is going on now. Certainly if it had been a traumatic event involving abuse or a serious illness, like that, you would know. Don't look for a needle in a haystack. Your kids deserve for you to look right now at what's going as an adult father.
    We have tried a way where we can get along and bring up the children together. We have tried this multiple times - only she refuses to let me. I must follow her exact routine, despite there being no set routine. I must following exactly what she does. There can be no variation. When I ask how she wants me to do someting, I must use my own initiative, but when I do i am not following what she wants doing. Seriously i feel like she's some kind of dictator.

    I would like nothing more than being in a loving happy relationship and a loving family - I believe we have gone beyond this and can't see light at the end of the tunnel. She has grind me down so much. I used to be a happy confident person, now I am just outright miserable with no confidence whatsoever. Of course she blames me for that & says its because I know that I am a terrible father. If she would let me father my children then I would be able to show her, but she won't.

  7. #26

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    Originally Posted by smackie9
    Why not give this one last chance and live together at your own place away from mum and everyone else. I feel this is necessary, so you two are forced to depend on each other like you should be doing. This will form a bond as a couple, and that is what is missing here. Sure there will be issues, but it will be up to you two to work through it no one else. Now combine that will counseling, but the right counseling. Find one the works on communication and teach you two how to communicate with each other, and let you both learn how to work out your problems. Using a counselor to mediate is no different that seeing a divorce lawyer. That is why you are not accomplishing much. Your expectations are in the wrong place. They are not there to solve your personal issues, because that is not what you need to work on. It's all about communication. Communication and understanding each other is key for a relationship to last the long haul.
    Getting out own place is going to be difficult.
    Her mum has a few health issues so she wants to be close to her mum.
    She won't rent as sees this as wasted money
    she won't buy a house unless it's her forever home in a really nice area = massive deposit
    we wouldn't get a mortgage at the moment as whilst she has been on maternity she has been made redundant so technically unemployed & my income will not be enough to get the house she wants (not to mention the deposit)

  8. #27
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    You've mentioned this and I made a different point - put the children first by coming up with a custody/co-parenting plan. I didn't mean that you should try to be a family with her - you're not one now -you are not married to her and you don't live together as a family. Put the loving happy romantic relationship on the back burner. Put your kids first. That's what I wrote above. And that means taking actions so she cannot be a dictator -with joint or primary custody she can't be a dictator since you will have custody of your children in your own physical space at least part of the time.

  9. #28

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    also when out first born was registered, he took my name. She then wanted to change his name to her surname-my surname. I reluctantly agreed.
    Second baby was registered without me being there, so I am not on the birth certificate and he has just her surname.

    Reasoning behind that is that she could not get an appointment to register him for ages, then complained and got an appointment in 10 mins time. I was at work, rushed out of work to get down there. (atleast 20 min journey in good traffic) I was almost there, then she called me and said too late she has already registered him and as I was not there I could not be on the birth cert. She says that she was told there was no time to wait and it had to be done there and then.

    I told her that I believe this to be very unfair on her part - she should have pushed for another suitable appointment.

    This is something that she had said in the past that she would do, register him on her own without me on there. She knew how important it was for me to be on there but she went ahead and did it anyway and she cannot see how upset i am over this. She turned it on me saying that I am being unfair.

  10. #29

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    Originally Posted by Batya33
    You've mentioned this and I made a different point - put the children first by coming up with a custody/co-parenting plan. I didn't mean that you should try to be a family with her - you're not one now -you are not married to her and you don't live together as a family. Put the loving happy romantic relationship on the back burner. Put your kids first. That's what I wrote above. And that means taking actions so she cannot be a dictator -with joint or primary custody she can't be a dictator since you will have custody of your children in your own physical space at least part of the time.
    Sorry Batya, i misinterpreted your point.
    I think this is going to be the only way that I will be able to father my children to be fair. I cannot see any other way.
    Thank you

  11. #30
    Platinum Member bluecastle's Avatar
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    I hope you don't take this the wrong way, but there is a pattern developing in this thread: various advice gets offered about active steps that can be taken, and in response you explain how those steps can't be taken, or are very, very hard to take.

    You're overwhelmed, I get it. And, yes, hard is hard is hard. But this is also your life: 34, with two kids, living with your parents while the mother of your children lives with hers, and the kids. And none of that is working for you.

    You both have a fantasy of what would work, and in ways you each wield the sword of that fantasy as a weapon to avoid the full reality of the situation. It's time to deal with reality, to make that choice, for you and for your kids. So, again, a lawyer: a lawyer to help you sort out this business of registration, and a lawyer to help you—both of you—created a binding system for custody and parenting since you guys don't have it in you to create that system together.

    Does all that sound fun? No. This isn't fun. Does it sounds scary and intimidating? Yes. But this is the time to stand up to scary and intimidating, not to shirk from it.

    Once that is in place, more active steps can be taken. And what is hard becomes less hard. And your children, instead of being raised by two people who are almost hardwired to engage with each other in a somewhat childish manner, will start getting raised by two people shedding those childish instincts.

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