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New custody arrangement mean no life for us

ST's picture

Hi! I have been with my partner for 2 years, he has a four year old boy and my boys are grown up. When we met he had 50/50 custody and it worked pretty well. I was a bit reluctant to take on a young child again but we took things slowly and it's been fine. My partner does spoil his little one mainly because of guilt and over compensating but I step back and mostly can deal with it although sometimes it makes me cringe. Anyway fast forward to a few months ago his ex basically started a war over custody and we now only have him on Friday night to Monday morning every week so we never have chance to go out with friends or together because my partner wants to enjoy all the time he can with his son. I completely understand but also I miss my relationship...the ground rules have changed here! I work long hours, my partner works part time and is happy enough spending every weekend at home watching movies with his boy. I'm craving some grown up fun time! 

I've tried bringing it up but he glosses over it or says he'll plan something and it never happens. I'm starting to make plans without him now just to get out of the house on the weekend.

are we doomed?

Wicked stepmo.'s picture

I don't think your doomed. If you start just living your life. Eventually your SO will notice and start missing spending time with you. Spending time alone with his kid even if for only 3 days will wear on him. 

Right now it's too convenient for him. He has his kid and his girlfriend accomdates his needs so he doesn't have to put forth much effort into the relationship. Men can become complacent very quickly as they prefer taking the easy route. 

ST's picture

Thankyou, that's great advice. He does get very complacent so I'll start doing my own thing.

his mum is more than happy to babysit any time so we'll see if he wants to put in the effort to plan a date night or if he's using this as an excuse to be lazy Wink

tog redux's picture

Was this the arrangement the court ordered? Or did he agree to it? 

Anyway, I agree with Wicked above. Go about your life - invite him to do things and if he won't, go on your own or with friends. After all, it's not your child and you aren't responsible for him.  He'll start to get nervous and make plans with you. 

ST's picture

*smile*It was court ordered, then we had a chance to argue it but he decided he was happy this way. He felt it was more suitable apparently.


I will definitely start doing my own thing- I've already organised a girls day out this Saturday and he's grumpy about it 

futurobrillante99's picture

May I ask how your partner supports himself and pays child support working part time?

Gimlet's picture

I would stop with the financial help.  He is capable of working full time and the longer you enable him, the longer he's going to take advantage of you. 

ndc's picture

Why is he only working part time? You would think he'd be more accommodating of your wishes and needs, since he's relying on you financially.  Stop paying more than your share of household expenses and insist that he cover his own expenses. Put your extra money aside for fun weekends and your own future.  

justmakingthebest's picture

I agree- everything into 1/3's- OP, BF and SS all equal. BF is responsible for 2/3 of everything. 

justmakingthebest's picture

I agree with the others, HIS new custody arrangement means HE has no life. This doesn't have to be the same for you. Go out with your friends, do your thing. One of 3 things will happen- It will be fine and nothing will change. He will go back for a modification. You will break up. 

I don't know anything about your partner, or why he only works part time while you are out there working full time, that alone would bother me. I don't know if he rocks doing everything else- maybe he cooks and cleans and does the yard work, so it is a balance that works for both of you. 

You are a brave woman to date a man with a 4 yr old with your kids being grown- my youngest is 13 and I can't imagine having to deal with a 4 yr old again. 

ST's picture

He does cook but I have to pull him up on a lot of other stuff, he does tend to be lazy which bothers me. He worked part time originally to accommodate having his son at home a lot but now that's really not necessary and I've spoken to him about finding a better position.


im doubtful though- he's in a groove that works and I can feel us distancing 

justmakingthebest's picture

I would feel distanced too if I felt that he wasn't pulling his weight. 

Why isn't he working hard to secure your future together? Laziness REALLY bothers me. 

futurobrillante99's picture

I'd let him get so much distance he'd have a different address!! LOL

tog redux's picture

To me, it's that he feels entitled to OP's financial support. That would not work for me. Give him a date when you will stop providing that support, IMO. 

ndc's picture

Stop picking up/subsidizing ANY of his financial responsibilities and he'll have some incentive to stop being lazy.  Pay only your share (and your share of household expenses will be less than his because he has a child in the house part of the time). Pay no expenses of his child unless there's something special YOU want to do for the child.  Right now you're enabling him to be lazy.  Once he's working a full time job, it might become apparent to him why every weekend custody schedules are awful. 

Tried out's picture

he does still have a life, or at least time to *have* a life or just have some down time since he only works part time. No wonder he's good with it! 

ST's picture

He's home in the afternoon so he can play video games or go and do whatever so you're right. My downtime is catching my breath and then the house is over run with a toddler. I hadn't realised how much I valued NOT having little kids until this and I feel guilty about it but I know I have a right to feel how I do. Ugh.

it's a mess 

lieutenant_dad's picture

So you don't get to spend weekends with your partner because he was too lazy to argue to keep 50/50 custody.

AND you don't get any alone time in your own home because there is always a kid there on your days off. But your BF, who chooses to work PT, gets time home alone.

AND you are paying more than your fair share because your BF doesn't pull his own weight financially.

AND your BF won't even get off his lazy, PT-working, PT-parenting butt to get his own mother to babysit and plan a single date night out OR evening with friends?

AND he doesn't keep the home clean without you nagging him?

What, exactly, is the appeal here? If it's orgasms, I can give you some recommendations for a good BOB. If it's companionship, there are a dozen different dating apps, Meet Up groups, yoga classes, etc that can offer that. If it's a clean house, you make less mess alone and monthly housekeeping is cheap to buy.

One of the worst feelings in the world, in my opinion, is feeling alone in a relationship. You have bound yourself by the confines of a relationship without getting any of the benefits. Your BF has ZERO reason to change because he has everything he wants. If you want someone who will make you a priority, then you have to make yourself a priority. Waiting around for your BF to notice you isn't going to cut it. Tell him how you feel and what you want, and if he can't provide that (and asking for a weekend a month with you isn't crazy, don't let him make you think it is), kick him to the curb and find someone who is willing to make you a priority in their life.

ST's picture

Definitely no to marriage- I've been married before. I want to stay with him but not unless he can start to make some changes and see that it's not all on me to compromise my entire life to fit in with him. 

Stepdrama2020's picture

Im gonna sound negative. He is using you. You work FT and he works PT?? And he has a kid to support. Stop financing him. .  

Must be nice for him. But lady it aint for you.

I wouldnt even want alone time, or date night with this guy. Hell would it be you paying for the dates too? Mood killer for sure. 

ST's picture

You are all absolutely right. I have let myself slide into a scenario where everything works for him and I am giving up far more than I should. I will stop paying for anything that isn't an expensive of mine, stop turning down invitations to go out and start living my life and if it doesn't work for him he can make changes or we can split.

I love him but I'm not about to sacrifice my life to accommodate his custody situation or laziness. 
Thankyou ladies for the clarity, sometimes you just need a little objectivity:)

Rags's picture

I told my son today that I am not going to postpone living my life while someone else figured their shit out.

Our conversation was not relationship related, but... I stand by the message.