- 4 months ago
Hi bees! I was on this site a few years ago when I was close to becoming engaged. We started planning the wedding before he proposed, but it didn’t end up working out. However, I have since moved on with a seriously wonderful man. There’s something I’m struggling with though. He is a single father and often puts his daughter before me. Now I get it. This is how it is when you date single parents. I knew this going in, but it’s really different once you’re actually in the situation.
We actually knew each other when I was with my ex. We were more like acquaintances at first and then not long after my ex and I split, I saw my current boyfriend (B) at the grocery store. We started chatting and ended up exchanging numbers. It was nice to have someone to talk to about my breakup, and he had gone through one with the mother of his child a few years back, so he understood what I was going through. He asked me out several times and I always turned him down at first. I didn’t tell him this right away, but the reason I would turn him down was because of the fact he had a kid. I’m not sure I ever want kids. It’s definitely a possibility, but I don’t feel ready at this stage. I tried to create some distance between us, but he somehow convinced me to go on a date with him. We had a great time and almost kissed at the end of the night, but I abruptly said “goodnight” before the kiss happened. A few days later, he called me and asked if he did something because he was constantly getting mixed signals from me. He said most of the time, it seemed like I felt the same way about him, but when it got down to it, I always got scared. I was honest and told him it was nothing personal, but that I couldn’t see myself with someone who had a kid. I honestly figured that would be the end of it for him since there wasn’t much he could do about it, but he continued to pursue me, saying that he knows we could make it work. After several more months, I decided I was ready to be his girlfriend.
We have been dating for a little over a year now, and for the most part, everything has been great. But, I can’t help feeling like he puts me on the back burner. He shares 50/50 custody with his ex, and honestly his ex has been great. They had an amicable split, she has moved on and seems happy with her relationship, and he only really talks to her when it has to do with their daughter. I’ve met his ex a few times and we get along pretty well (he definitely has a type personality wise! Lol). But the problem I’m having is that, especially lately, he’s been canceling on me a lot due to his daughter. I’m in the process of moving in with him, and I’m tarting to wonder if that’s the right thing to do. We’ve had several date nights cancelled because his daughter was sick when he had her (totally understandable), but it still sucked nonetheless. More recently, my car was in the shop and so he gave me a ride to work and was supposed to pick me up at 5. He was a half hour late because his daughters t-ball practice ran late. I’m not sure why he couldn’t have left to pick me up and then have gone back. I would have waited there with him until the practice was over. His excuse was that it was supposed to end at 4:45, but it ran late and he wasn’t sure how late it would go, so he didn’t want to leave and have his daughter make the coach wait with her.
Also, whenever I’m there (which is most of the time now since I’m literally moving my things in), his daughter will make comments and stuff like when we kiss or hold hands. She’ll say stuff like “ewww dad!” And she makes it a point to sit in between us on the couch. Even if she’s doing homework or something in another room, she comes in, sees us sitting close together, takes her arms and pushes us apart. He thinks it’s cute, but I don’t. I laugh in the moment to go along with it, but it’s super annoying. She’s 7 years old, so I’m thinking this might just be normal behavior for a 7 year old, but I’m not so sure. I’m afraid she’ll never grow out of this phase or whatever it is. I just don’t think she likes me very much, despite me spending lots of time with the both of them, but also letting them spend time together without me interjecting. For example, usually when it’s his week with her, I’ll go upstairs after work for most of the day or shopping or hang out with my girlfriends and don’t really see B much until it’s time for bed.
All of this came to a head last night when I actually cancelled a date because my friends asked me to hang out with them. I haven’t seen them in a while and was actually kind of excited because I wanted to bring up this problem to them and see what they had to say. He had his daughter anyway, so I didn’t think it would be a big deal. When I got home, his daughter was already asleep, and he let me know how bothered he was that I just cancelled on him. I sent a text while I was at work and told him that I wasn’t able to make it tonight because my friends were having a girls night and invited me. His mom was supposed to come and watch the daughter. She still came over to spend time with both of them, so I didn’t see why it was such a big issue. When he told me he felt like I was putting my friends ahead of him, I sort of blew up and let it all out, saying things like “how the hell do you think I feel?! You do this all the time!” And “so you expect me to put you first, but you also expect me to come second in your life? That’s not an equal partnership!” I feel bad at some of the things I said, but honestly, it had to be said.
His ex picked up his daughter for school this morning, and I ended up leaving early to come home because I felt so upset about the whole thing. I texted him that I was coming home early, and he decided to leave early as well because he wanted to talk. I honestly thought this was it and that he was ending things, but he came home and started crying, saying he doesn’t want to lose me and he will do whatever he possibly can in order to fix this. He made a lot of good points, like he only has his daughter half of the time, so it’s not like this is an everyday issue. I agreed that the times he doesn’t have her, we have no problems, but it’s always super tense when she’s there. I told him that I want this to work too, but that I’m not sure what else can be done.
He treats me better than anyone in my life ever has. He will drop literally anything (except his daughter, which I wouldn’t expect him to) when I need something, always listens, is super nice, the sex is great, he basically treats me like a freaking princess. So I’m feeling really bad about how I feel. I don’t think I’d ever find someone who goes above and beyond for me like he does, so that’s pushing me to stay. But I can’t help but wonder if it would be easier to date someone without kids.
Weve talked about marriage in the past and the possibility of having a baby. I definitely am not ready for a baby at this point in life, but maybe in a few years. But then I always wonder in the back of my mind “will his daughter act out even more if we get married and have children of our own?” I’m just really struggling because we love each other so much.
Have any of you gone through something like this? Does it get any better?