(Closed) With someone who has already been married

posted 6 years ago in Encore
Post # 3
2605 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: October 2010

1. A man who puts his salary into his bills and into child support, even at the expense of a wedding, is a man worth keeping. And forgive me for sounding mean, but a dose of reality is necessary here–if you can’t see that, I don’t think you’re ready for marriage.

2. Hate to say it, but weddings in general aren’t quite as special to MOST men in comparison to how important it is to their brides-to-be, divorced or not. But if you do choose to get married, I’m willing to bet that he WILL find your wedding special and unique on its own because YOU are special and unique to him. And if he’s a man worth keeping, then hopefully he will have the wisdom to realize that even if you are his second wife and his second marriage, you and your marriage SHOULD be completely new for the both of you.

Post # 4
11272 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: April 2012

my husband was married before, as was i.  neither of us have ever considered being the “second” wife or husband.  ever.  don’t think like that.   you will make yourself crazy.  i like to think of things a bit more positively.  he is my “final” husband and i am his “final” wife.  would you rather be the person he used to love or the person he loves now?

as for the financial part of your concern, that is something that i think the two of you should sit down and discuss before taking the relationship to the next level.

Post # 5
4951 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: July 2012

I agree with the others. Though I’m sure it’s a drag for you because you can’t experience the newness of being engaged, the wedding, etc. with someone who hasn’t been through it before, it’s not the end of the world.

Both of us had been married before. And while I don’t know your boyfriend’s reason for divorce, I suspect the second time around will actually be better. It was for us. Why? Because we’d both been through hell with our ex spouses. Both of us were cheated on. So this time, it was more special I think because we were doing it knowing how marriages can/can’t/should/shouldn’t work. We took the leap of faith even after having gone through all that crap. So if he does propose, I’d look at it as a good thing: he’s willing to try again! Some people are scarred from a failed marriage, but if they do it again, that shows a lot of faith in you and marriage!

But it’s true what a PP said, I think most men don’t view all of the wedding stuff as exciting.

Post # 6
8042 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: December 2013

@kaseyl87:  Well I am dating a guy who is 41 and I am 27. He has been married before, no kids. He does want kids, though.

As far as the whole ‘he’s done it before’ thing, that doesn’t bother me too much. I never wanted a big wedding, and I know his first wedding was big… but he hated it. He just did it because his ex wanted it… it was the ‘done’ thing. I know that his ex is his ex for a reason. It helps that they had a horrible marriage, she is MUCH older and less attractive than me etc. Of course this sounds shallow, but who doesn’t compare themselves to exes in some capacity? I am secure that he is with me because he wants to be. I love the fact the he has done things before… that way he has learned from mistakes and can guide me through things fairly painlessly. I look to him for advice.

I think your big concern is the money thing. I admit that the hefty spousal support payments he makes to his ex put a damper on things, but I knew that going in. Just like you knew he had 2 kids. I think that worrying if he can contribute to the wedding is the least of your worries. In the end a wedding is a one day event. I’d be more worried about how much he will be able to contribute to future vacations, to retirement savings, to paying down the mortgage, to your lifestyle in general. Those are the things that really matter in the big picture. Do you like his kids? Do you get a long? If you truly don’t want kids, then this could be a good situation – he has the kids readily built in, but they’re not yours. I always thought that being a stepmom could be kinda fun (I know it’s challenging too). The payments will end when they’re 18 or they’re done university… are you prepared to continue this same lifestyle until then?


Post # 7
3569 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: April 2013

I think the first thing you should do, is stop thinking of his other relationship. It’s in the past and leave it there, the only thing it will do is drive you crazy and possibly piss him off. YOu have to come to terms with the fact that he had those life experiences.

You need to think long and hard about marrying someone with kids. He is taking care of things he need too, which he shoud be doing. thati s going to effect you life in numerous ways. YOu need to come to grips with the fact that his children will be a big factor. 

You need to decide if it’s worth and you live with that, because I see a ton of friends who didn’t consider the big picture and it causes huge strains in their marriage.

Post # 8
485 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: December 2012

I’d like to comment from the other side of the peanut gallery.

A subsequent marriage is no less “special” than the marriage itsself.  In fact, I might say that I am enjoying THIS one more because I’m older and wiser and have less emotion but more passion.

Think of it like sex……..  You lost your virginity.  Emotions were heightened.  It was *whatever it was* to you.  And it was special because it was your first time.  but…….

Then, a few years later.  You’re older.  You’re wiser.  You know what to do to please your partner and you know what it takes to please yourself.  That experience is not the same as your “first time” but in a way it’s so much better.

You also can’t guarantee that someone who has never been married will share your emotions.  Different people are just that….. different.  A man with a past is usually the better for it.  And that doesn’t take anything away from you.


As far as not being financially secure enough to contribute to a big wedding.  That is where I may agree with you…. but not for the reasons you think.  Most of the time as you get older, you realize that the things that were important to you when you were younger are not as important to you when you get older.  I have the financial means to have a huge wedding.  I don’t want one.  It’s not because I’ve *been there done that* it’s because I realize that what is *important* is that I am marrying that man I love more than anything else in the world.  I don’t want a huge fancy reception with people my parents invited that I barely know.  I want a smaller, more *adult* wedding, surrounded by the people I love.  It’s less about the pomp and circumstance and more about the depth of committment and feeling underneath what we are doing.

It is BECAUSE I’ve *been there done that* that I know what I REALLY want and what is REALLY important.  And it’s NOT a big expensive wedding.  It’s the committment and work to come for the rest of my ilfe.  It’s not ANY LESS special.  It’s MUCH MORE REVERENT.


I am concerned a bit by your statement that you “do not have children,nor do I want any children of my own“.  Marrying a man with 2 children is a MUCH bigger deal than just the child support he pays.  Not only does he put his money into those children, he will put his time, effort and eneregy into them as well.  You can view that as a *bonus* and you can be with him to enrich your lives and the lives of those children…..  Or you can view them as something else that was “taken” from you. 

I hope that you will give this much thought and discussion… the role that he will play in his children’s life.  the role that YOU will play in his children’s life.  If he is 35, his kids are still that….. kids…. maybe teenagers, maybe younger.  They don’t need someone in their life that views them as pariah that take away what should be yours.  They should be viewed as children with whom you can’t wait to spend time with, to guide, to learn from.  If you can’t *share* your husband with his children and their mother (with whom, ideally, you will have some sort of *relationship* with as well) then you will be miserable and you will make everyone else miserable.  If you don’t have that mentality…. I urge you to re-think this relationship.


Post # 9
9 posts
  • Wedding: March 2011

I, also, wanted to comment on what you said about “not wanting children.”

If you marry him, you will be a parent, you will have children. It is not an obligation that is guaranteed to end when they are 18, or to be on a part time every other weekend basis …. things can happen. 

My husband’s parents were divorced when he was 5, and his mother passed away from cancer when he was 12. He then went to live with his father and his stepmother. His stepmother was VERY put out that she had been put in the position to be a full time parent to a 12 year old and made his teenage years an absolute hell – never letting him forget how resentful she was that she was not a full time parent when she didn’t want to be. She let him know that “she didn’t sign up for this.” It was really horrible, hurtful, and incredibly emotionally damaging for him…and the thing is, she DID sign up for it. That is the decision you make when you marry someone who is already a parent. 

In terms of his financial security, his obligation to his children predates any financial obligation that he would have to and with you if you marry. You would need to consider that as part of the package. Additionally – financial obligations to one’s children aren’t guaranteed to end once they are 18.

I’ve been remarried for a little over a year, and my husband absolutely considers himself to be a parent to my boys. I wouldn’t want to be married to him otherwise.

He and I both felt that our wedding ceremony and reception were so much more meaningful than our first ones. Like Gferg, we were both victims of infidelity in our first marriages – and I think that making that 2nd leap of faith and the opportunity for another chance at happiness added so much emotion to the day. We’re also both in our 40’s – so the added bonus of having 100% control over all of the decisions about the day made it a bit more fun too….nobody to please but ourselves I guess. 




Post # 10
2854 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2013

@kaseyl87:  My Fiance has been married before and I am sure he is excited to be doing it again with me. I don’t think he was given much input before into the wedding but I welcome it.

Post # 11
436 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: December 2013

I too would be more concerned  about transitioning to a step-parent/blended family role than focusing on the fact that he has been married before.  I was married before and to ditto the other posters if I get married again it will be more special because I know what I want this time (that and I don’t have to do things the way my mother wants them because she’s paying for it- ha.)

Focus that these children are his #1 priority, he will be paying child support until they are at least 18 and that will have a financial impact on your life with him.

Oh-and men really don’t care about weddings- unless you ask them about the booze or possibly music : )

Good luck!

Post # 12
254 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2012

My husband was married before, though they had no children together.  It really did not at all affect our wedding. It was no less special to him just because he had been married before. They were two completely different things. Also, I never think of myself as the second wife.  I am just his wife, that’s it.   

I agree with the PP’s who are concerned about your not wanting children of your own, but thinking about marriage with a man who has children. Maybe I am misreading what you intended, but I hope you realize that by marrying him, his children will be your children too. Really think about what you want in life, and if you absolutely do not want to have children, this relationship is probably not in the best interest of anyone.   

Post # 13
407 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: November 2012

Just because she doesn’t want children of her own doesn’t mean she has a problem with his kids. We don’t know why she doesn’t want children of her own. Maybe she doesn’t want to go through pregnancy. Maybe she doesn’t like babies. Maybe she sees no need in bring another life into this world. Maybe she doesn’t want the additional expense. Whatever her reason, she at no time said she had a problem with his kids.

If you’re having trouble being a second wife you’re probably pretty insecure in general. I would focus more on getting comfortable with who I am as a person and then on who I am in a relationship. Insecurity can kill a relationship and lead to the very behaviors we’re fretting about.

Post # 14
9142 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 2013 - St. Augustine Beach, FL

You take them as they come.  If he is living up to his obligations to support his children then you can’t be upset about that, he is being a good dad.  If you don’t want to deal with it, then find a guy who doesn’t have children to support.

You will always be the second wife and you will need to deal with that; hopefully he doesn’t treat you any differently but  yes, everything you do together such as get engaged, get married, go on a honeymoon, will be something he did with his ex-wife.  And how would he feel if you changed your mind about children?  24 is young and I agree that at 24 I couldn’t imagine having children but now at 28 I have officially caught the baby fever and seem to be constantly thinking about babies.

I wouldn’t worry about any of this until you are actually engaged.  Try to develop a relationship with the kids so you don’t feel so upset about the idea of money leaving your household to go to their mom’s.  I never advised my ex-husband to shirk his duties and not pay child support for his daughter even though he paid more than what would have been ordered by the court.  I took a lot of pride in being a stepmom and honestly that was the most difficult part of the divorce for me.  I could care less that I haven’t seen my ex-husband in over 2 years but not seeing my stepdaughter left me an emotional mess for a long time and it’s only recently that I have made peace with not having a relationship with her anymore.

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