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Selfish SM thoughts - need advice!!

Milomom's picture

Today has been a bad day for me - not necessarily "bad" in the sense that something bad happened or anything, just more of a frustrating day of self-introspection. I was hoping that I could vent about it with all of you and get some objective advice.

Today I couldn't help but think some selfish thoughts - related to money and how much sacrifice we as SM's make to be with the men that we love.

One of my oldest, best friends gave me this advice about 4 years ago (when I came to her to help me "evaluate" my relationship with FDH): "Milomom, the fact is that if you stay in this relationship for the long haul, you will ALWAYS be making sacrifices, even indirectly, in the financial sense since your FDH has such a massive CS obligation to BM. You have to think about this loooong and hard before you make the decision of whether or not to marry this man. I personally think that FDH is an AWESOME GUY, an AMAZING FATHER to, and provider for, his children and I think that he LOVES YOU with all his heart. With that said, I think that you are in a very tough position. I've known you, Milomom, since we were both about 15 yrs old. I've struggled with you through college (we both worked full-time jobs through most of college and ALL summers - our parents couldn't afford to pay), I've seen you work VERY HARD for everything you have, from your undergrad degree, through law school and earning your law degree, passing the Bar Exam, buying your house, new cars....I've seen you EARN everything you have. I've known you for a VERY long time and you deserve to live the type of lifestyle that YOU WANT to live. However, reality is, that if you & FDH eventually get married, and even have kid(s) of your own, your FDH will have that massive CS obligation to BM for many years to come - and that will DIRECTLY IMPACT your family and future."

So, as much as I know this is very selfish of me, I am ANNOYED AND FRUSTRATED today because I don't think that FDH should have to pay CS to BM at ALL, in light of our true 50/50 joint physical and legal custody situation (2 fskids - FSD17.5 & FSS14). It angers me that FDH has to pay BM about $1,600/mo, which forces FDH to work long, hard hours to struggle - FDH is literally financially supporting TWO households - and it all makes me sick to my stomach. Also, when I think about the fact that both FDH & I would like to buy a vacation property in a WARMER climate, to be able to take a break and get away---we CAN'T AFFORD TO. We can't afford to because FDH has to pay the CS to BM. FDH & I would like to buy a larger house in a nicer area---but we CAN'T AFFORD TO. I think about the fact that $1,600/mo. would certainly allow us to do things that WE WANT (and work hard to be able) TO DO, but it goes to BM.

Meanwhile, BM gets to buy all the latest gadgets (iPhone, Mac laptop computer, internet apps, crap, huge, expensive tattoos on her body, manicures, hair colored different every season, CD's, etc...), she gets a FREE ROOF OVER HER HEAD at fdh's rental property (FDH pays her rent at as an "offset" of his CS, which doesn't help much), a FREE CAR from FDH (when they divorced) & her car insurance paid for 3 years afterward, now a FREE CAR from her new alleged "fiancee" a/k/a Sucker, and to top it all off, she only has to work 2 days/week (sometimes 3 days/week TOPS)!!! In addition, FDH has to cover 100% of the fskids' major medical/dental/optical insurance, 90% of fskids' unreimbursed medical/dental expenses (to the tune of over $4,000 just in braces alone), 90% of fskids' before/after school care expenses (when they were younger - that used to KILL me when FDH had to constantly write BM an extra check just for THAT each and every month!), etc...... BM literally has almost NO FINANCIAL OBLIGATION to support her OWN 2 children! Oh, and she only has them about 50% of the time (though lately, it has been more like 65/35 - the 65% is FDH's time with the kids!) to boot!

There are those who would say that "I knew all of this" when I got involved with FDH. I will admit I knew the basics - FDH was honest and I had FULL DISCLOSURE about his financial picture and obligations to BM (with regard to fskids) from DAY ONE. He hid absolutely NOTHING from me from the beginning - and NEVER has, NEVER will. However, I did not realize how much of an overall impact this would have on OUR PRESENT LIVES TODAY.

So here I am, 41 years old, 8.5 years later into this relationship (including 4 years of living together, 1.5 years being engaged), getting married to FDH in September and pregnant with our first child. I cannot help but have these selfish thoughts like: "what IF I wasn't marrying a man with a previously enjoyed family?", "what would my lifestyle be like to marry a man that didn't have a massive CS obligation to his ex-wife?", "how different would our lives be if FDH didn't have to pay $1,600/mo. to BM?".

I don't feel bitter, I just feel like MY LIFE and what I WANT has been put into this proverbial "holding pattern" like an airplane - where we are just "circling around" about the airport, waiting for it to be OUR TURN to land - waiting for it to be OUR TURN to financially have the things that WE WANT for our lifestyle choices.

I know that CS is a "finite" concept - it doesn't last forever (thank goodness), BUT when I think about how much money FDH has ALREADY PAID to BM, between the divorce settlement $$ and the massive CS$$ that he pays and continues to pay (for possibly the next 8-9 years!), it makes me sick to my stomach. God help me, I sound like a selfish, bitter, nasty old stepmother and "second wife" who is "jealous" of the first family...but I am not. I truly care about my fskids - and I LOVE MY FDH WITH MY LIFE AND ALL MY HEART.

Sorry that this is SOOOOOO long (shocker!) - I tried to condense my thoughts concisely...but it was harder than I thought. Thank you to all of you that made it through all the way to the end - I genuinely appreciate it.

Any words of support and/or advice as to how to resolve this "selfish SM" dilemma and train of thought would be greatly appreciated. I truly value all of your opinions - whether you have an angry, negative reaction to my inner-thoughts or not. I can take it. Let the flogging begin!! LOL!!!

Love, Milomom


asheeha's picture

I understand, my DH's CS obligation is nowhere near yours but I will have to work full time if I ever have a child and BM only works 12 hours a week and was a stay at home mom (sahm) while SDs were young.

From what I read you have no previous children.

I'd say let it out, let the anger flow and just get it out. This is just the place to release all that dark energy.

In my experience I had to grieve that I would never experience a "first" family. I would always have a "second" or "blended" family because my husband already had that "first". I will always have to deal with the children/ex wife/financial obligations that first family produced.

This is hard to get over and sometimes it just seems unfair. But when an outrageous financial claim from BM comes, I vent, I rage, and I release. And then I remember the amazing guy I have and above all the creature comforts, he's worth it. If we pay CS for 10 more years, that's fine. I waited a REALLY long time to find the RIGHT guy. He has some serious baggage, but he's truly a GREAT guy and that's why I never settled before. I could have had all the comforts of a "first marriage/family" but never with the quality man who knows how to treat me.

I just have to remember "he's worth it." It's when I'm feeling like he's not that I get into trouble.

Give yourself grace to grieve what you were never allowed to have. Get it out, every bit of it, and then try to find those things that you love about your FDH and your life and cling to that instead of the things that you can't have because of his past and his ex's greed.

overitall's picture

I don't think your thoughts are selfish at all. Finances in a relationship need to be discussed. My DH pays alot for ss in CS and I can tell it is not being spent on nice clothes/healthy food. With that said, I started to complain I was paying for all the food/houselhold items that ss used when he was/is here EOW. It had nothing to do with the money as it was/is a small amount. It had a lot more to do with everyone complaining about me, never appreciating what I do for the houselhold. It was a "sacrifice" I never thought about (or cared about) before I started feeling used and disrespeted. There are many topics that finances pass through.
Another conversation I have (which it dosen't seem like you've experienced yet but may)- DH and I have a BD and I pay primarily for her. (We have seperate bank accounts). I buy the clothes, pay the doctors bills. It was never something we discussed, but something I just took the lead on. It gets frustrating for me that I pay for everything for our BD and I see him paying his ex and extras for his son. Sometimes I let him know what our bd needs and have him pay. Or I'll say here is her doctors bill - you need to pay this. Not that he is a bad dad or DH, but he doesn't think about these things; I need to see him pay for our daughter sometimes. I threw this out there because if your pregnant with your first you may encounter this.
I don't feel selfish for these thoughts, they need to be discussed.
(Sorry so long also)

Inneedofgrace's picture

I don't think you're being selfish... I think you're coming to grips with the reality of your situation. And it does suck. It isn't fair. People who tell you, "Well, you knew what you were getting yourself into..." are careless and callous. I agree with asheeha... Let yourself grieve, and don't judge yourself harshly. It takes a very special woman to love another woman's children, and live life with a man who has ties to a "first family". I try to focus on what I'm doing to positively affect my husband and SKs lives, as opposed to the negative impact the BM (aka BFH - bitch from hell) has on my life.

Stuck33's picture

You are not being selfish! Its frustrating and not fair. We pay too much in the point where we cant afford to take care of ourselves anymore! I guess I can forget having my own family with dh because we cant afford it. BM gets to raise her family from another man on our dime..meanwhile, I have to go without my own family, have to stress over paying bills because half of his paychecks goes to a helpless hopeless woman and a disrespectful entitled snotty kid.

GoodbyeNormaJean's picture

I understand how you feel. We are on the opposite end of what you are dealing with. DH procreated with deadbeats, but is custodial. All in all the BMs are court ordered to pay him $248 a month in CS, but neither of the 2 that pay CS have ever worked, so we get it either from their husbands' tax refunds or from their PFDs every year. So the burden of providing for the kids falls completely on us.

Yeah, I knew this in advance. I committed to it, and actually, it's not as big a deal here, because I was already a work from home mom. I don't mind providing for them. It's worth it to have them here where we can take care of them. And we do have enough for me to be able to have children with DH.

The thing that pisses me off sometimes is when the kids tell me about things their moms have and things they buy. It makes me bitter that they provide so little for their children, and what they do provide is begrudgingly, but they can afford trips and things like that. It just seems a little unfair sometimes.