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Is it worth a second chance?


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My sons dad and I separated in January of this year and I moved out of his house in Feb. We had been together for 4 years. Initially things were good as most relationships are but then things went down hill. The majority of our issues were caused by my ex's mums behaviour. She was never accepting of me and it got worse and worse especially when she found out I was pregnant. Without going into too much detail she made it very clear I wasn't good enough for her son. I think alot of it stems from their relationship having issues. The way she treats him is awful and he's had a slightly strange upbringing by her. He's the eldest of 3 and the other 2 are treated very differently. They are spoilt and shown love and respect where as he's certainly been pushed aside.

Her behaviour towards me got so bad by the end that I had to seek therapy and go on medication.

My ex didn't know how to handle the situation and upon reflection his behaviour stems from his childhood and her behavior towards him. His approach has always been to ignore her as you can't ever speak to her about her behaviour without her flipping out.

After she had told me she wouldn't have chosen me as the mother of her grandchild amongst many many other issues I decided I couldn't take it anymore.

My ex was drinking alot I guess to deal with the divide that was happening and he was just hiding his head in the sand.

Fast forward and he's now in therapy to resolve the issues from his childhood and the way his mum treats him. He says he can now see how he should have done more to set boundaries and that he wouldn't let her behave like that towards me. He says he wants to give thinhs another try.

I am very clear on the fact I will never let his mum be in my life. I'm happy for my son to go and see her as long as she's not abusive to him of course but I won't allow someone to bully me.

I guess I'm stuck as what to do. We spend time together as a family the 3 of us and we have such a wonderful time. I have a wall up still for sure due to there being so much hurt but on a whole we work well as a team. Do I give him another chance as long as we agree I don't need to have his mum in my life. He can go see his family with our son if he chooses but that I remain seperate.

Is this sustainable? Has anyone been in a situation similar and they've managed to have a stress free life?

Any help would be appreciated, thank you.

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Where are you living now? Is he paying child support? Are you following court ordered visitation?


Do not let the child be around someone who drinks. Grandparents have no legal rights. Stop blaming his mother or bad childhood, parenting, etc.


He's an alcoholic and that is his choice. Your war with his mother is futile. He's the problem.

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If you are not together then you should not really spend time together as a “family of 3”


That is sending mixed signals to your child.


At this point no you should not consider a reconciliation.

The father of your child is in therapy , that’s great that he has acknowledged issues, but that doesn’t mean they are resolved. And likely won’t be for a long time.


So for now you need to treat the split as a split. Because that’s essentially what it is.


Sort out custody or mutual agreement on parenting. No trio meet ups.


And if after a year or more from now , that one or other of you suggests a reconciliation then discuss.


In the meantime keep it clear for your child. That’s your priority. Isn’t it?

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Don't rush anything right now. Is someone pushing you to reconcile or move back in? I think your partner is the problem. He has a lot to sort out and needs to seek help for his drinking or alcohol dependency. He's using alcohol as a form of escape.


Have realistic expectations where you can. Some people may never change. I think time is on your side so wait it out a little longer and don't jump to moving back in. Your partner has a lot to change. I'm not sure how realistic it is to expect these changes within just a few months or weeks if he's just started therapy. Is he still drinking?

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If the only issue in your relationship was his mother and his dysfunctional relationship with her going back to his childhood and if he is seriously following through on therapy and learning how to manage that better, then yes I think you should give things another go.


That doesn't mean jumping right back in with all four feet. It means taking it slow and easy. Just like he has to work out his issues with the mother and his childhood damage, the two of you also need to talk and possibly seek out some counseling as a couple on how to address all the pain, hurt, and so on. You might want to do so individually as well. Lots of MIL's never ever think any woman is good enough for their son, so I'd imagine there was much more going on than just that to drive you so far that you needed meds.


Part of it is that you BOTH need to learn better boundaries, not just your husband. For example, if she is that toxic and abusive, then no, she should not ever be a part of your lives and especially not a part of your child's life. It's one of those things where you can't have it both ways and boundaries involve hard decisions. You say are fine with her having your child around so long as she is not abusive.....well how would you know she is or isn't when you aren't there to supervise and if you are there to supervise and she turns on you, your child is still observing abuse....do you see?


If your husband chooses to maintain any kind of a relationship with his mother at all, then he needs to keep it strictly between her and him and arms length at that. He can meet her for lunch briefly on his own. No having her over, no going over her house, no holidays, etc.


Can you both actually detach from her properly enough?

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Welcome to ENA


What I see is that he just didn't let some time go by and let things calm down and then tried to get you back. He got into therapy and is working through his issues which no matter what happens is good for him and your son. You don't want him to be the kind of parent his mother was right?


So there is no rush to do anything so relax and take your time. I agree you should leave your son out of it for a while until you are sure you really want to give this another shot.


As far as should you give it another go goes. He is making an effort, he is willing to abide by your terms and you both still love each other so it would be a shame to not try again wouldn't it?


There is a saying that people don't change which is totally incorrect. Sure some people think time will change them but it never does, work on ones self helps us grow and change. Trauma in our lives changes us, life experiences changes us, falling in love changes us and the loss of a loved one changes us. Some want to change while others think they don't need to. Which is he?


Take your time, be strong and brave and firm but not so rigid that compromise is off the table and I think you have a good shot and not rebuilding the relationship but actually building a solid relationship as it should have been from the start.



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I feel it is WAY too soon to even consider going back to that.. mess :/.


Sadly, he's got some deep rooted anger, despair etc.. as he struggles to deal with what he has had to live with - a toxic parent.. poor guy :(.


If you read over everything you have said here, you will see all of the bad that has occurred.


Unfortunately, I am not sure his mon will never be around- if you take him on again, you also have her... agree?


I would leave as is.. spend time together.. And if truly split now, arrange it that he see's his child on his own as well.

And suggest he do not leave the child with gramma, alone.


Have a stress - free life? Not with that- as you have already encountered it.


IMO, UNLESS he truly give great distance eg. never deals with her.. go far, far away, AND has ongoing therapy to work through his damages.. maybe, in time it may be stable enough.. but he has a ways to go.

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stop hanging out together. You have the kid, or he has the kid. Of course, if the kid is in the hospital, that's different - but these faux old times confuse you. Set up a visitation schedule. He is in therapy and is just making these revelations and who knows if everything will stick yet. A crazy mom situation works if the son has good boundaries, but the excess drinking to cope is just not acceptable. After you act like separated parents for quite awhile - and you are -- you will come into your own and know if its a good idea or not.

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