When does some separation start?
This is the first time I've posted or even looked for advice in this realm or on this topic. I've been dating a great man for over a year whom I love but after this holiday season feel as though maybe there really isn't anything there for us, or at least for me. He and his ex-wife, who have a three year old (I love her and she loves me) and a dog, had a VERY amicable divorce. Same lawyer, no alimony as he pays for everything and they still share a checking acount. She doesn't work and he makes plenty of money. He bought her a house and car, pays for her vacations, clothes, anything she wants needs, etc. She has free access to his house in town and whenever she goes to the city, she stays at his apartment there (with him). She has the daughter(who is in school 3 full day a week) and the dog Mon-Fri. He has her and the dog every weekend from Friday evening through Sunday afternoon when he goes back to the city. (He lives in NY and comes every weekend to the town where his other house, ex, daughter and I live. Still following?) He and his ex still share the same mutual group of friends so we are fairly consistently in contact with her. In fact one of her best friends and my b/f's lives in my b/f house and when the ex's brother comes to town he and his daughter stay at my b/f's place so his daughter can be with her cousin. I actually don't mind that too much because I think it's god to have the girls together but it's pretty constant.
My b/f is a busy man who works hard all week then comes on the weekend's to balance his time between his daughter, dog, home, friends, hobbies, chores/errands and me. (Notice the placement?) If something goes wrong at the ex's house my b/f goes to fix it, they still share cars if it's needed and he calls her to do favors for him mid-week(becuase she has a freer schedule than I as I work full time.)We recently went away on a vacation and he told me that they were talking of getting another dog together so the first dog would have a play buddy. The first dog is 125 lbs and they want to get another of the same breed to share back and forth every week! I must admit I asked him that if his daughter got lonely would they then consider having another child together so she'd have a friend too.
This year, which would have been our first real Christmas together after having dated a while, he was hosting his family at his house. I've met the majority of the family several times and we actually went on a great vacation with his sis and her hubby. He kept asking what my family plans were but never invited me to join him until a few days before the holiday and after he'd finally admitted his ex would be there on Christmas morning to do the "Santa" thing. Alright, it's hard but I get it. The ex-brother in law was in town also so it would be he and his daughter too. Yep, still get it but it's hard to be the odd person out at times; but I figure it's only one morning right? And as my b/f said, it's for the kid.
However his ex and her bro were there at EVERY family function and just going out to the bar or dinner every single night of the holiday (even if the kid wasn't there) There was never one time when she stayed away from his family proceedings. My b/f would tell me to relax that I was making everyone tense and if I couldn't deal I should just leave because I was making his ex-wife feel uncomfortable. He asked why I wasn't going and getting to know his family better but couldn't seem to understand my answer that it was difficult with his ex reminiscing about past holidays together. (Also- the ex is always telling me how my b/f's mom drives her nuts and the family tells me they were never that crazy about the ex)I spent Christmas alone every day because his ex was at every single family event they had and I didn't feel I needed to put myself into an uncomfortable position.
I wanted one day with his family without his ex there but that was an unreasonable request because as my b/f says, this is his life and and it's not just about he and I. That was made pretty clear when his mom called me by his ex's name and then said we were just melding into one another- nice. So I write this and it seems obvious to me what must be done but still I love him and people say to wait through the holiday's to see because they are so stressful. I feel like I'm going nuts because my boyfriend really just thinks I'm unreasonable. Am I crazy? I know ex families share the holidays, but am I the third person in a paper dissolved marriage only? My b/f says he loves me, wants to marry me and have me move to NY and that I'm the best woman in the world (well obviously! don't we all like to think that?) but ACTIONS SPEAK LOUDER THAN WORDS. And as we all know there's a reason a cliché is a cliché. (This is massive, so if you read it all sorry and thanks)