My boyfriend of two years is pushing for us to purchase a home and move in together. We’d tried co-habiting once, briefly (I became pregnant during this time). He was never able to make his half of the rent or share any of the bills.
I asked him to leave and he hasn't lived with me since, although we continued to date and attempt to work on our issues while living separately.
I handle all financial and other responsibilities for our child, who lives with me full-time.
His father has since more than tripled his previous income, and should now handle his share of expenses. However, he’s shown no desire to repay loans from me when we lived together.
Also, when I was pregnant, he cheated, which I later discovered. He’s never truly acknowledged the pain he caused me, and blames me for not making him feel more needed.
Recently, he started paying child support after we had an epic argument, but he’s not speaking to me after beginning the payments. I feel like I’m being punished for demanding that he grow up.
I want to keep things amicable as I'm stuck with him until our child’s an adult.
But I'm very angry and sometimes want to lash out at him.
How do I reconcile what I need to do for my child's sake (remain amicable if not residing together) with what I really want to do (leave him and never look back)?
If I leave, he’ll be awarded visitation that’ll mean me losing time with my baby, and a painful tug of war.
Between Anger and Responsibility
He’s your child’s father, entitled to visits, especially if paying support. More important, your child’s entitled to know and see his father.
That said, he’s been a “taker” who enjoyed a free ride. But that’s history. He now wants to live together (when he’s talking to you).
Even if there’s hope for this to work out, you’d need a tight legal contract on the house, joint ownership, payments, etc. and it’d still be a risk. But maybe he has grown up.
Forget “lashing out.” The past is the past.
If there’s a chance to be a family, ask him to consider going to counselling with you to both learn how to re-build a relationship.
Or say No, and stay amicable for your child’s sake.
My mom, 96, was in good health until six months ago. She had a stroke, and became bedridden.
She’s been living with my brother, who often travelled overseas for business for 20 years. While Mom took care of his child (he’s a single parent), my sister and I helped her with his child (now in his early 30s).
My brother’s now refusing to let me and my sister see Mom since she left the hospital. He says he has the right to disallow people in his home.
Mom phoned saying that she wants to see us, she can die any time. But he told her, “I’m so good to you, why do you still want to see them?”
What do I do?
Get legal advice, fast, regarding his “elder abuse” by preventing her from her desire to see her own children.
I suspect that besides whatever emotional tie is behind this, there may be your mother’s property, savings, or other assets on his mind and within his grasp.
Make sure she has a will that was drawn without duress, e.g. when she was fully competent before the stroke.
FEEDBACK Regarding the woman who couldn’t attend her close friend’s funeral (Jan. 13):
Reader #1 – “This idea once worked very well for me in a similar circumstance:
“She could send a hand-written letter to the family, briefly explaining that she was overseas at the time of the funeral.
“She should describe her long friendship with their loved one and how much it meant in both their lives.
“In my case, the family told me how much they appreciated the letter, and it was fulfilling for me.
“Sometimes, family members don’t realize the importance and strength of long-time personal friendships.”
Reader #2 – “The friend’s feeling so sad and doesn't know how to deal with it. She should go visit the family!
“She could let them know in person how she shares their grief, and also share some of her favourite memories of her friend.
“It would bring comfort to the family, and bring some closure for herself.”
Tip of the day:
Stay amicable parents, if at all possible, for the child’s sake.