Iím checking in real quick from vacation. There a few things I have observe which is interesting. But we are having a great time.
M was in the shower and his son says to me ďyou can be my bonus mom, ya know? And D11could be my bonus sister ! Itís a real thing! Then he came over and hugged me. My heart just about melted all over the place. Witness by D 11 and Mís mom. M doesnít know he said that yet. I donít know how he would take it. I would hope positively
And girl, I'n NOT referring to you when I say this, because you took your time - but for all those others out there who are in a rush to introduce their kids to their dates - this is why you wait AT LEAST six months, and preferably until you are pretty sure the relationship will be long term, before you introduce your kids - because they can get attached this quick, and you don't want them to go through cycles of getting attached to your dates and then losing them.
You are absolutely right. I went through it with ex NG. His daughter was heartbroken when we broke up. She would tell her mom she wanted to walk to NJ to see me. She cried a lot. There has to be a sense of future and solidity.
This morning when we were leaving for the beach he said ďwe have to wait for bonus mom! ď then when we were walking, M went to take his hand, he said no. Then his grandma went to hold his hand and he said ďno, ginger !Ē
M and I got a chance to hang out last night outside and have some beers while the kids were sleeping. We even got to fool around a bit. I told him what his son said and he thought it was really sweet. He said he explained the concept to him and used the term.
On the other side. He just really doesnít display much affection towards me this week. I random quick kiss maybe once in the day and thatís about it. However, he hovers over his kid , constantly cuddling him, and always hyper focused on him, and itís not even like heís looking for that. Its overkill. But I understand why he is the way he is and all parent child relationships are different. D11 and I can bicker like sisters.
I would never give up this relationship for the slow down in sex and affection. I guess Iím wondering if I should say something. I donít want to come across as needy, but I want to want my needs known, if that make sense .
D11 and I are currently sitting in a gas station because th rain is so bad I canít see. We are on our way from vacation. We were going to leave after breakfast today, but M convinced me to keep my dog boarded one more night so we could spend the day. My dog is having a blast at his doggie resort. He even made a girlfriend .
Overall this trip was wonderful. It was a huge bonding experience for all of us. All of us really bonded individually with one another .Really, it was like vacationing with my husband and our two kids and my mother in law. I never had a family vacation like that. The kids had an absolute ball. Aside from being stuck in thunderstorms, I am so glad we stayed because we had the best day at the beach. Building stuff in the sand, boogie boarding, all doing it all together.
I observed a lot about his parenting style this weekend. He gives his child 100% attention 100% of the time. He carried him still. When we decide what we are going to do or where we are going to go, he asks his kid. He gives him anything he wants and supposedly to ďprevent a meltdownĒ in my opinion, sometimes kids need to hear no and melt down, instead of getting whatever they want when they want it. But itís not how he rolls. He lets his kid pretty much eat what he wants when he wants too. Even D11 said today at breakfast when he carried his son over to the counter to chose something ďM totally s@cks up to son!Ē Itís true . Her observation is correct.
I mean, I get why he does it. He doesnít want any negative time with his son. And I think he avoids any sort of arguing. Like when I go to discipline my daughter when her mouth gets sassy he tells me ď shhhh, donít aggravate herĒ and Iím all like ďaggregate her?!!?!?, sheís aggravating meĒ I have no problem putting her in her place when her mouth gets disrespectful. But I guess in the time he has him, he wants it all to be rainbows and puppies. No negativity. But life happens. Sometimes the time we parent isnít always during the best of times . Truth is, M wants and needs his full attention and everything to be great.
With all that being said, it was a fantastic trip. I didnít say anything about the lack of affection because it did pick up. I think he was nervous or something and heís just so focused on his kid and giving it all to him that he is t really thinking about much more. He said we made the trip amazing and he was sad to see us go . It was hard to leave.
And I will admit it, I do think he is THE ONE. I could see myself marrying him. If only he would marry again.....
Very happy to read your last update! Makes me smile and feel good hearing when others on the board are having such wonderful times and happiness in their lives!
As a Dad with my daughter, for sure I can relate to how M is with his son, BUT on my mind constantly are your thoughts and comments especially not spoiling her or letting her have whatever she wants. It's a balance for me that I'm still working on and for sure I want to get it as right as I think I can given that I feel how much it will impact her personality/mindset later in life. I know that I value my new lady's input on how she raises her children and it has influenced me for the better on some ways in which I interact with my D4. Wouldn't surprise me as time goes by that more of your influence in how he sees you disciplining your D, rubs off on him and how he handles his son.
Thanks B! In the time I have been divorced, which is a long time, I havenít had any successful relationships and did a fair amount of dating. Iíve definitely take. Much longer than most, but he is so worth the wait.
I donít offer advice on parenting unless he asks. And he has asked before when his child was acting up in preschool. And I am afraid I see why he might be. Heís so used to getting immediate attention and gets to make the decisions . Unless he asks again, I wonít offer. Is it annoying sometimes? Yes. We could be talking and he will jump right out of the conversation and run to him if he simply says ďdadĒ. All his time with his son is pure fun. No regular ďchoresĒ or getting ready for school, or having to do anything like that. Itís playing, biking, kayaking, fishing, snowboarding..... itís great he has his son involved in so much. But D11 and I Iíve differently. I deal with every day responsibilities and we are not 24/7 fun. But it was really nice having actual fun with her this week without the daily grind. My daughter finally mastered a bike completely. She was very behind on that due to fear. She used to complain on the beach, this time she was loving playing in the sand with M, me and his son then she found a love for boogie boarding. Those moments are special for my D and I because we donít get all that fun very much. I did explain to him that when he starts kindergarten this year, life is going to change. There is homework and
I miss them already. There are differences, but overall we have a great time together and we work together nicely. Sunday will be Mís birthday family dinner. I love that D11 and I are included in that. M leaves again next Saturday for his solo vacation. Hopefully we can have a date night for just us this week. That would be nice too.
Great update! So glad y'all had a wonderful time and that you seem so happy.
I'm not questioning M (or anyone else for that matter) because how they parent is between them and their child. I just don't get that overly permissive, attentive, parenting style. I had that same thought when reading some of what J9 was saying about his dr lady's son. Though my parents are divorced, I'm not technically a child of divorce because I was 25 when they got divorced. MY XH's kids were teenagers when he and I married and were all adults out of the house when we split. Sparky's daughter is younger than my own, but is still an actual adult living on her own, so I get that my experiences are different. I did date men who had children before I married my XH but many of them were part-time dads so maybe I just didn't realize that they were behaving like M does with his son. For some reason, that saying that gets passed around facebook all the time about unruly kids becoming unemployable adults keeps running through my mind.
Don't get me wrong, I'm not calling M's son unruly...I don't know the kid. But, what I do know is that if he is getting immediate attention and calling all the shots at 5(?), what is life going to be like when he's a teenager? It may be cute now, but likely not so cute when the 15 year old is doing whatever he darn well pleases and no one can really do anything with him.
It's like those parents (and I believe I recall J9 saying that his dr lady is this way with her son) who let their kids run wild then use the excuse that they don't want to "stifle their creativity". HUH? You can correct/control a child without stifling their creativity. I'm sure having very limited time with your kid and having a contentious relationship with the child's mother adds to the mix and I can totally understand why M would be the way you describe. It is almost like he's parenting out of fear. Fear that if something is negative, son will complain to mom and mom will hold it against M and maybe even keep son from him. Pure speculation on my part there, obviously.
I say all that to say this. I'm so happy for you that you have found a great guy and I'm also glad that your little families mesh well. What bothers me (I'm not sure it is necessarily a red flag, but maybe something that you will have to openly communicate about at some point) is that you keep saying you don't offer parenting advice unless he specifically asks (good plan!) but then you also say that he basically corrects you when you are getting on to D11 for something. It seems like y'all are not on the same page with how you should take a backseat role with the other person's child. I get what many have said on here about not being the primary disciplinarian for someone else's child. Totally understand what a huge issue that could be, but it almost seems like M tries to undermine you, in a way. I don't think he does it maliciously, by any stretch of the imagination, but if you are getting onto D11 about something and he's intervening, especially in front of her, that is NOT a good thing for anyone. Having different parenting styles is ok. But to make it work, you HAVE to communicate openly. And, you have to learn to compromise, and realize that the other person doesn't parent like you do and therefore, your kids won't always be little carbon copies of each other. They are different people raised by different people and should be handled differently as a result. You get that, I know, but I'm not sure M does.
Sorry if I'm overstepping my bounds.
Me 49, XH 51 3 adult daughters from his first marriage 3 grandsons, 1 granddaughter My 1st marriage, his 2nd BD 9/29/2014 H moved out 10/6/2014 H filed D 11/4/2014 D final 12/17/2014
I'm sure part of M's parenting style has to do with not having as much time with his son and trying to assuage his parental guilt over the divorce.
I know you long to be in a living-together situation because your marriage was so brief and unsatisfactory. But don't rule out long-term dating but living apart. That might be the easier option with two such different parenting styles. At the very least I would wait another year or two before considering living together.
You didnít overstep at all, dawn. I am still trying to figure out how to navigate the step parenting thing.
His son is a really good boy. He had his moments as a 5 year old does, very very normal. M feels it isnít. That he was ďoffĒ and really, the moments were small. My daughter has her moments of being a sassy pre teen. Sheís still a really good girl, sheís normal . Heís a very active 5 year old boy. Cute as could be. He does play alone nicely. But M insists on being on top of him and involved while he does. Itís honestly not the kid. Itís M. I do think he is making the most of his small amount of time with him and wants to be with him every second and make sure he is happy. Because who wants to spend that time with a kid who is mad at you? Itís a part of parenting though. Sometimes our kids donít like us for a few moments. What he does I know he does from the heart, but I donít think he even sees it at all. Heís an extremely attentive loving father. But a little too much.
And I do think the right move is to say nothing unless asked. And I donít like when he undermines me in front of my daughter. That also comes from a good place. But I shoot him a look of death and tell him ďI will not stopĒ and then continue what I was saying to my daughter. Quite honestly, I donít think he would like it if I said he needs to give his son some space. I think we are very fortunate that even with our different parenting styles, it works. My heart does go out to him and I hate to say anything because he loves that boy so darn much and takes such pride in the role of being a parent. Which he is good at. And even though he defers to what his son wants all the time is all about him, he is great with my daughter. Gives her attention, teaches her things and they are getting real comfortable with each other . He s so happy when he reaches her something new and she asks a bunch of questions. He kind of glows.
Moving in wouldnít happen for a looong time. Our housing situations are complicAted. And if Iím being totally honest here, I think he is thrilled about how much his son loves us, but I donít know if he is ready to share his sons attention all of the time. I think his son would be though. It was cute, M and I were sitting next to each other on the daybed/sofa and he comes over. M asks if he wants to sit on his lap. He says no. I ask him if he wants me to get up so he can sit next to his dad. He says no. I then scoot over and ask if he wants to sit in between us. He snails and say yes, sits down and puts his head on my shoulder. I think he wanted to sit next to me. Then once at a meal I just sat next to son. He was cool. M rearranged seating so he could sit next to him too. He did just tell me he missed us today and the house feels so empty.
M and I did make sure we got 2 nights of us time after the kids went to bed. We would stay up until 1 am outside listening to the band and have some beers and talk and cuddle. And on the last day, he was actually kissing me even on the lips in front of his son and tell me he loves me. He got much more comfortable.
His mom was on vacay with us. Sheís the seeetest woman. Quiet. His dad died when he was a teen ( alcohol) and his mom raised to boys alone while working her butt off. If Mís som is ride to anyone, itís her, actually. D11 pointed it out. And no one says anything. M was a bit of a trouble making teen. She had her hands full. Both of her sons ended up to be very good human beings though. But M clearly strives to be everything his father wasnít and M has tons of respect for his mom and all she has done. Mís mom really likes my daughter. She has 2 boys and a grandson so she likes having a girl around .
All that being said, Iím here alone with the dog who became the popular dog at the doggie hotel. He had such a blast. Heís currently passed out on my rug. I loved the busyness of it all. It feels empty. I love us.