Sometimes ... the kids drive me nuts.

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-07-2006
Sometimes ... the kids drive me nuts.
17
Sun, 03-21-2010 - 9:03pm

So ... my on-again, off-again boyfriend and I are back on :-) Which is good :-) I think, I hope. We'll see how it goes :-) Anyways - can I confess something ...

Sometimes ... his kids drive me nuts. I love them and they're wonderful - but sometimes - I just want some space, you know? Like, I'd love to come home to a quiet house and just chill on my computer on iVillage. I'm so worried that if I marry him - I'm going to have to give up my spontaneity - like ... geez, I feel like running to the store right now - because if I decide that, I've got the kiddos that will want to come with - and what if I decide, gosh, I'd love to just pop in a movie - well there's 3 little kids that want to watch and it's R-rated! Having no kids of my own - I am NOT USED TO THIS!!! The minute I walk through the door I'm attacked by children who want my attention and want this and want that - and ... I'm pooped! I don't want to sound selfish - but I really am used to doing my own thing. Not used to all the demands of having kids - and all at once, it's a bit of a shock.

My boyfriend is 36 and I'm 33 - his kids are 9 (boy), 7 (girl) and 4 (girl). We've been dating 8 months or so. They're sweet kids. I do believe they have all been put into my life to teach me how to love, and to help me grow - but sometimes I just need some SPACE!

Pages

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-11-2007
Sun, 03-21-2010 - 9:46pm
If you think it's bad now, wait until you marry this guy! Some days you'll want nothing more than to be alone with your guy but the kids will all be there wanting your attention, too. And when they're not there, your guy will be thinking of them and trying to talk to you about them and you won't even want to hear their names mentioned. The problem is, he's in daddy mode and you're not. Not a healthy way to start a marriage. According to statistics, marriages involving step children are rarely successful. That's the harsh truth.
iVillage Member
Registered: 11-28-1999
Sun, 03-21-2010 - 10:18pm

Well, this is the reality of having kids, esp. young ones like his--you can't catch a break sometimes. I do think it's difficult for a 2nd marriage where one person has kids and the other person doesn't. Just think about it--when you become a parent of an infant, you are pretty scared to take the baby home from the hospital and have to take care of it, and it's a learning process. But usually there's only one at a time, and by the time you have 3, you're an old hand at it. It can be overwhelming to have to take care of 3 little kids if you're not used to it--and don't feel bad about it, even us bio parents feel that we need a break from our kids sometimes. I know a lot of women who are thinking about getting divorced are saying "how can I bear not to see my child every day?" Now as someone who got div 13 yrs ago when my DS was 1 and my DD was 7, I think to myself that by now I actually enjoy getting that break on the days when DS is w/ his dad.

I just think that you have to decide whether you can handle it. At this point since my youngest one is a teenager and I can see the end of the road of him being at home, I personally wouldn't get involved w/ a guy who has kids younger than teenagers. And even then, I wouldn't marry or live w/ him until the kids were out of the house because I already did the stepmother thing once and I just couldn't do it again. I'm not totally down on being a stepmother, it's just that I had a difficult situation. So I'm not telling you not to do it, just that it will mean a total change in the single life you are used to.

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-07-2006
Sun, 03-21-2010 - 10:49pm

I know.

Gosh, I have such BIG TIME reservations about this. So ... I guess I don't know what to do. Do I just break it off with him? I would miss him SO MUCH - I can't even tell you.

And what would I give him for reasons? He loves his kids SO MUCH, he'd think I was crazy for not loving them as much as he does, you know? At some point this is going to reach a critical mass - where he asks WHY I won't marry him. We're not there yet. Do I just pre-emptively dump him? Do I let it run its course?

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-25-2007
Sun, 03-21-2010 - 11:27pm

oh yeah, to go from NO kids to 3 that are not your own, would be very very challenging and you will need an enormous amount of patience.

mom_uk2socal - Mom to DS22, DS19, DD16

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-20-2002
Mon, 03-22-2010 - 9:54am

Well, I think you CAN work through this......but take it all REAL slow re: actually marrying......and be SURE to take YOUR needs into account, ....so you dont get resentful.


For example, if/when you do marry.....get a "place" in the house that's YOURS....an "office" if you will.....a place where you can tell the kids you're going to,.....and it's YOUR space.....they are only there briefly for visiting you/by invitation.

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-28-1999
Mon, 03-22-2010 - 11:20am

Only you can decide whether your love for him is worth putting up w/ the kids (who will eventually grow up & move out, but it's a long haul considering their ages). What I think you have to establish now is some boundaries on what you will and won't do. For ex, he should be getting a babysitter & taking you out on dates, I would say at least every other week. You aren't their stepmother yet, so don't get put into the role of having to take care of them. Sure a lot of times, you will be visiting his house so you will be playing w/ the kids and if he makes dinner, it's only normal that you would help clear the table, etc. but as far as cleaning his house or doing his laundry, DON'T DO IT! Seriously, I just see too many guys who are divorced or widowed and can't take care of their kids and can't wait to get married again so they can get help, while single moms manage to work full time and take care of their own kids, do all the housework & cooking, etc. My 2nd DH was a widower since his DD was 3 and he managed to take care of things (well, he did get remarried for a short time before I came along) but when I met him, his DD was 10--he worked f.t., he had her in after school daycare, his house was clean, he was a good cook, in other words, he wanted a romantic partner, not a housekeeper & maid.

As far as not loving his kids as much as he does, you probably won't. There are some people who do really end up loving their stepkids, but not everyone does and if you expect that you should, then you'll think something is wrong w/ you if you don't. All that he can or should ask is that you treat his kids nicely and don't end up resenting them and that you realize that considering their ages, he will have a certain amount of putting their needs first. You know, it might be that you have plans for a romantic dinner out but then if one of the kids gets sick, then you have to stay home, things like that. And there's a certain amount of driving kids around to their activities, helping them w/ homework, doing things for them, etc.

I have to admit that I never really even liked my DSD. When my 2nd DH & his DD moved in w/ us, she was 12 and my DD was 13 (I also had a DS who was 6.) I won't even go into all the problems that she ended up causing but even before that, we just had nothing in common. She never talked to me, only would respond if I answered a question. I think it's actually better to get involved when the kids are smaller because they are probably more willing to accept you. My DSD's need for a "mother figure" if she had one was filled by her grandmother, which was fine. I didn't expect her to look at me to be her mother. On the other hand, we never had arguments either and many times, I defended her when I thought her dad was being too harsh. Her grandma did tell me that she thought I was nice to her. And I would do the same things for her that I did for my kids, such as drive her to places, buy her clothes, etc. But a parent just can't expect someone else to love their kids like they do.

Community Leader
Registered: 08-25-2006
Mon, 03-22-2010 - 1:25pm

I would say at this point just take things as they come, and don't get too freaked out about the future.

Serenity
iVillage Member
Registered: 06-03-2008
Mon, 03-22-2010 - 3:05pm

I guess my first question is have you discussed this with your SO?




Community Leader
Registered: 08-25-2006
Mon, 03-22-2010 - 4:37pm

But until I talked with my DH about it, he was oblivious to what he was doing, subconsciously.

Serenity
Avatar for mhash
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-27-2003
Mon, 03-22-2010 - 6:10pm

I think it is a mistake to live with the kids and be their surrogate mommy if you are not permanently committed in the relationship.

Pages