Dear Wendy
Dear Wendy

“He Wants Me to Move Out to See If He’ll Miss Me”

My boyfriend and I have been together since 2008. We made the dumb decision of moving in with my parents for almost a year and a half when we had our first child. In August we moved out and I am currently pregnant with our second child. He has told me that ever since we moved out he doesn’t feel the same way for me. We made a plan to go on a date to see if there is still anything there because we have been preoccupied with with work, school, keeping a house, and just never spending close time with each other. He told me that if the date doesn’t make him feel like he loves me again he wants me to move out for a couple weeks to see if he misses me. How can I re-build that again? What should I do to regain the love? — On the Rocks

No, that’s not how it works. You don’t decide the fate of your relationship based on one date when you have a kid together and another on the way. You go on many dates. You start carving out time for each other. You hire a cleaning lady to come clean your home once or twice a month to free up personal time. You choose one night a week to go out just the two of you and you either hire a sitter, ask your parents to sit for free or do some babysitting trading with other friends who have kids. You go to counseling. You learn to communicate. You tell each other what you like about one another. You tell each other what you need and you try hard to meet one another’s needs.

And if all that doesn’t work, you kick your boyfriend out because any man who would tell his pregnant wife to “move out for a couple of weeks to see if he missed her” doesn’t deserve the luxury of staying put. You kick him out and you sue him for custody of the kids and child support. That’s how you do it.

*If you have a relationship/dating question I can help answer, send me your letters at [email protected] and be sure to follow me on Twitter.

169 comments… add one
  • avatar

    cporoski February 1, 2012, 7:19 am

    Wendy! You are hitting it out of the ball park this week. LW, listen to wendy. And, FYI, Cleaning ladies do wonders for your relationship.

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    • avatar

      Taylor February 1, 2012, 9:13 am

      Seriously…this has been a stellar answer week!

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  • avatar

    Lydia February 1, 2012, 7:21 am

    Right on, Wendy. Of course that one date isn’t going to work. With that much pressure on it (“if it doesn’t work, I’m moving out”?! Seriously?!), it’s pretty much doomed to fail. Which is not to say they shouldn’t go on that date; but the pressure should be taken off.

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  • avatar

    Anna February 1, 2012, 7:22 am

    All I have to say is OMG and WTF?! If he wants time apart to “see if he misses you” I say you should tell HIM to move out. Either way, you will be apart and he will find out if he misses you or not. As soon as he does, change the locks and throw all of his stuff out on the lawn. Oh, and start child support paperwork immediately. This guy sounds like a douche.

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    • avatar

      jlyfsh February 1, 2012, 8:11 am

      reading this the LW doesn’t mention where the kid is going to go. I’m assuming with her? Has he said if he’s going to miss their child?

      This whole letter just makes me very sad. And I hope the LW listens to Wendy’s advice because no relationship is all lovey dovey all the time. You do have to work at it. However, getting the bf in this case to realize that is probably going to be harder. It sounds like he’s already checked out of the relationship.

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    • avatar

      CG February 1, 2012, 9:33 am

      Yeah, I saw the headline on this and before I even read the letter I thought, “This relationship’s over!” Seriously, LW, you deserve better than this guy.

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  • avatar

    Addie Pray February 1, 2012, 7:35 am

    I can’t like this response enough!

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    • avatar

      Addie Pray February 1, 2012, 7:39 am

      Just want to add: also sue for alimony. What a bag of dicks!

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      • Dear Wendy

        Wendy February 1, 2012, 8:18 am

        They aren’t married though, unforch.

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      • FireStar

        FireStar February 1, 2012, 8:49 am

        They are common law – or do you not have that in the States?

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      • avatar

        scattol February 1, 2012, 9:00 am

        common law depends on the jurisdiction (and I am sure Addie Pray has an actual answer) and it may well be that he has no obligations towards here.

        That notwithstanding he has an obligation towards the children and married or not makes no (little?) difference. It’s therefore important that LW makes sure his name appears on the birth certificate and that it sticks. That gives you the ticket you need to get child support for both kids. It won’t take care of LW but it will make her life easier taking care of the kids.

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      • avatar

        Something More February 1, 2012, 9:01 am

        We do, but I think it’s a minimum of seven years living together…? And I don’t think it’s something all states have. I’m not sure, tho…

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      • avatar

        Gwen February 1, 2012, 9:46 am

        Common law is not recognized in most states. The 7 year thing is an urban myth. I would be very surprised if they were considered common law married, not only would they have to be in one of the rare places they could, it is also more than just living together, you have to actually hold yourself as husband and wife, for example, call yourselves that, sign paperwork, change names, file joint taxes.

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      • FireStar

        FireStar February 1, 2012, 10:13 am

        Wow. In Ontario if you live together and have a kid then welcome to common law…and alimony

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      • avatar

        MissDre February 1, 2012, 10:24 am

        Where in Ontario? Ottawa girl right here 🙂

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      • FireStar

        FireStar February 1, 2012, 12:02 pm

        T.O…. where it is a little warmer! Yesterday was 10 degrees!

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      • avatar

        mcminnem February 1, 2012, 12:22 pm

        The T.O. weather is confusing the hell out of me. I saw crocus buds walking through Queen’s Park yesterday. WTF, January??

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      • FireStar

        FireStar February 1, 2012, 12:52 pm

        Shhhh…. winter will hear you.

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      • avatar

        mcminnem February 1, 2012, 10:35 am

        And even without a kid, don’t you get common law benefits after three years or something (I think it’s three) if you’ve been registered to the same address and filing paperwork together?

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      • avatar

        Flake February 1, 2012, 10:39 am

        Not in Quebec, though it may change soon. There is a case for Supreme Court of Canada about a QC woman suing her millionaire ex-BF for alimony.

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      • avatar

        mcminnem February 1, 2012, 10:45 am

        I know it does apply in Ontario, I’ve just never been sure what the timeframe is or what the exact requirements are.

        I should probably learn that.

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      • avatar

        Muffy February 1, 2012, 11:08 am

        You have to live together in a conjugal relationship for 3 years to be considered common law in ontario. But having a kid can affect whether you are viewed as common law earlier than that. Furthermore, there is NO property division in common law relationships – whether you have been together 3 years or 25 years. If your name is not on that house or lease LW you will not get it, you will not get a piece of what your bf earned during the relationship and likewise he will not get a piece of what you earned. You may get spousal support however depending on your level of need and his level of ability to pay it. You can also get child support.

        That case at the Supreme Court of Canada with the woman in QB suing her exbf for money is about property division – she wants some of the money he earned during their relationship. The reason the case is a big deal is: several years ago the supreme court decided that there will never be property division in common law relationships because those people CHOSE to not get married therefore they do not get all the trappings that come with marriage. However they have decided to hear this case and those sitting on the court this time around (save for the Chief Justice) are completely different than last time so it is possible they may overturn the past decision

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      • avatar

        Muffy February 1, 2012, 11:18 am

        Also – the case about the QB woman is also about spousal support not just property division (she wants a share of hte house etc.). The reason it went to the supreme court is that QB historically has no spousal support (or what you know as alimony) for common law couples despite 1/3 of people living common law (way higher than anywhere else in teh country). It’s possible the SCC might declare the law that prevents her from getting spousal support in QB is unconstitutional and not deal with her property division claims.

        That being said the woman is asking for 56 000$ /month (because she was used to having a lot of money at her disposal), a lump sum of 50 million and half of his estate. This does not include child support payments. So…it’s hard to tell how they’ll rule

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      • avatar

        Pamplemousse Rose February 1, 2012, 2:55 pm

        For issues that fall under provincial jurisdiction (Alberta) it’s 3 years or you have a child or you enter into a written agreement. For issues under federal jurisdiction (like taxes, OAS/CPP benefits) it’s 1 year.

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  • rubyroo

    Ruby February 1, 2012, 7:37 am

    Wait…what He wants YOU to move out to see if he misses you? When I first read your letter, I thought it said that HE would move out. Not that that makes it better.
    This does not sound like a good guy. Suggesting one date to see if he still loves you…it sounds like he’s already decided he wants out and will use that ‘one date’ to end the relationship. Don’t wait for HIM to decide whether or not he wants to be with you; YOU should decide if he’s worthy enough to be a part of your life and the lives of your children.
    I agree with Wendy. Kick him out and get a lawyer.

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    • avatar

      spark February 1, 2012, 7:50 am

      I also first thought that it said he would move out… just WOW. Kick his ass to the curb. You’re lucky that your parents seem supportive; I think he’s a lost cause.

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    • avatar

      jlyfsh February 1, 2012, 8:05 am

      yeah i read that wrong too. craziness.

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  • JK

    JK February 1, 2012, 7:40 am

    What Wendy said.

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  • avatar

    Christy February 1, 2012, 7:42 am

    Wendy, I love you. That’s really all that needs saying.

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  • avatar

    honeybeenicki February 1, 2012, 7:43 am

    Wait… what? What is wrong with him? I agree with Wendy completely. This is just plain crazy. You can’t magically fix a relationship in 1 date and if anyone ever told me that I should move out so they can see “if they miss me,” they would be out on their butt in no time. No need to pack, I’ll throw your stuff out after you.

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  • Brad

    Brad February 1, 2012, 7:59 am

    Would somebody please call the police and let them know we found the 12 year old that stole a man’s body.

    And LW, you asked “How can I re-build that again? What should I do to regain the love?” Have you considered hitting him over the head with a frying pan to knock the stupid out of him? That might work, and even if it doesn’t, it will probably make you feel better.

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    • call-me-hobo

      call-me-hobo February 1, 2012, 10:03 am

      Brad, I wish we still had comments of the week because this would definitely win it for me.

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      • avatar

        mcminnem February 1, 2012, 10:12 am

        I second that!

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      • Brad

        Brad February 1, 2012, 10:47 am

        Haha thanks.

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    • landygirl

      landygirl February 1, 2012, 10:57 am

      Bazinga!

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      • Brad

        Brad February 1, 2012, 11:52 am

        Oh Sheldon…haha. Love that show!

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    • Jess

      Jess of CGW February 1, 2012, 11:24 am

      *applause*

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    • AKchic_

      AKchic_ February 1, 2012, 1:33 pm

      I’ll send a few frying pans of varying sizes/strengths so she can test them out on his skull.

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  • avatar

    ReginaRey February 1, 2012, 8:15 am

    UGH. Wendy, you rock. Also, LW, your boyfriend’s laziness and immaturity have turned me off to the point that I’m *almost* considering asking you “What’s the point of even salvaging a relationship with someone like that?”

    But I agree with Wendy. Work on your relationship first. I think it will become relatively clear whether or not he cares to put in the kind of effort needed to rebuild a relationship. And if that becomes clear – don’t stay with him “for the sake” of the kids. The kids will be fine if you choose to end your relationship with their father. Good parenting can still be done when parents aren’t together.

    Oh, and one more point, I don’t like this whole “What should I do to regain the love” thing. You say that like you did something wrong; like you haven’t “earned” his love or that the whole situation is entirely your fault. It’s never one person’s fault. Your boyfriend has a big chunk of responsibility in this, which he doesn’t seem to want to take. Clearly he’s trying to foist blame on you for the relationship’s problems, which is immature and frustrating as hell.

    Personally, it seems to me like your boyfriend is looking for an easy way out of this relationship because he got bored. Maybe he doesn’t want to grow up, man up and put in the work it takes to be a good partner (and father). This whole “I’ll decide after one date” thing is so immature I can’t stand it. In the end, like Wendy said, if this doesn’t work out…YOU kick HIS ass to the curb, ya hear?

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    • Brad

      Brad February 1, 2012, 8:50 am

      I’m in the same boat with you on this one. The guy’s being an immature ass which is why I was so snarky in my comment. There’s just no excuse for being that cold hearted to a partner, especially when she’s friggin pregnant with his child. And the whole her needing to win back his love BS is extremely rude and hurtful at best and emotionally abusive at worst.

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    • CatsMeow

      CatsMeow February 1, 2012, 10:14 am

      Good point on the “regaining” thing. Keeping the love strong in a relationship is a shared responsibility.

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    • avatar

      SpaceySteph February 1, 2012, 1:42 pm

      The only reason to salvage this relationship is the kids. I know that not all marriages work, and I know that staying together for the kids when you really truly can’t work it out is not a good idea for anyone involved. I don’t avocate a shame relationship, or loveless marriage. BUT, I truly believe that they owe it to their children to TRY to work it out. To realize that 4 months of a rough spot is not really that long in the grand scheme of things and really truly give staying together a shot.
      That said, if you find that you can’t work it out, you can and should leave him, without feeling guilty, because you did try.

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      • avatar

        SpaceySteph February 1, 2012, 1:43 pm

        ahem, SHAM relationship. Or shame relationships, for that matter.

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  • avatar

    KL February 1, 2012, 8:20 am

    He’s a sleazebag. Dollars to donuts he’s already planning to announce that the date “failed” and he needs the couple of weeks–and that he already has plans for what he’s going to be doing during those weeks. Namely, acting like a sleazebag. It may be general (party like a bachelor) or specific (met a woman online and that’s when she’s in town), but it’s something.

    And even if he hasn’t gone that far, it’s still a dick move to kick your GF out and expect even the possibility that you can pick right back up where you left off.

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    • avatar

      ReginaRey February 1, 2012, 8:23 am

      I agree with you. I tried to be nice-ish to him in my response…but honestly, I think he’s a huge immature dick who’s just looking for a convenient way out of the relationship because he’s tired of the responsibilities of having a family. It’s infuriating, and I don’t even think I’d want to try to rebuild a relationship with someone that stupid.

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      • Amybelle

        Amybelle February 1, 2012, 8:42 am

        I agree…. any man who would even contemplate asking his pregnant girlfriend (along with their young child I’m assuming) is pretty much beyond redemption. Honestly I regret a lot of the time I spent “working” on my marriage, it takes two to do that and it doesn’t sound like the LW’s boyfriend is willing to do the work.

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    • avatar

      Fabelle February 1, 2012, 9:24 am

      Agree, agree, agree– it sounds like he’s planning a “vacation” from her & his child. Nobody asks their partner to move out for a while to see if they miss them. Although that would be bad enough…

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    • avatar

      cporoski February 1, 2012, 11:12 am

      I would bet there is another girl in the wings. I have never heard of a guy leaving a situation like this without another woman drying his tears.

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    • avatar

      Jessibel February 1, 2012, 11:55 am

      I agree, this sounds like a set-up. He sounds checked out and possibly controlling/emotionally abusive. It sounds like there’s already something going on there that he wants from those few weeks. The fact that he’s asking HER to move out while pregnant is the height of insensitivity and hubris.

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  • avatar

    titian February 1, 2012, 8:30 am

    Well done Wendy!

    I hope the LW really thinks about what you have said.

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  • FireStar

    FireStar February 1, 2012, 8:46 am

    Forget the date. Go to counseling now and have your boyfriend be accountable for his actions to a third party. That you would even consider this shows you need someone impartial stepping in asking for that accountability in your relationship since you can’t. It isn’t your place to accept all the pressure he is putting on you to prove to him that you are worthy to date. The responsibility for continuing your relationship falls on BOTH of you. I don’t know what the hell kind of man says these things to the pregnant mother of his child but let him go explain it to a counsellor. And then YOU can decide “if there is anything there”. Unbelievable.

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    • Brad

      Brad February 1, 2012, 8:54 am

      The reason you don’t know what kind of man says these things is because there isn’t any of man that does. This guy is a boy whose body grew past his maturity. It might look like a man, sound like a man, or talk like a man, but it’s definitely a boy.

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      • Kate B.

        Kate B. February 1, 2012, 12:39 pm

        I love you, Brad. 🙂

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      • Brad

        Brad February 1, 2012, 12:46 pm

        Aww thanks. The urge not to quote Han Solo here is overwhelming. I’m such a nerd at heart haha.

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      • Kate B.

        Kate B. February 1, 2012, 1:30 pm

        That would make me love you even more, you scruffy-looking nerf herder, you.

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      • Brad

        Brad February 1, 2012, 1:33 pm

        Who’s scruffy-looking?

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      • Kate B.

        Kate B. February 1, 2012, 1:38 pm

        Oh my God…but I only like nice men…

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      • Brad

        Brad February 1, 2012, 2:04 pm

        I’m nice men.

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      • Kate B.

        Kate B. February 1, 2012, 2:18 pm

        Maybe, when you’re not acting like a scoundrel.

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      • Brad

        Brad February 1, 2012, 3:02 pm

        Scoundrel? Scoundrel? I like the sound of that.

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      • Kate B.

        Kate B. February 1, 2012, 3:08 pm

        Stop it, my hands are dirty.

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      • Brad

        Brad February 1, 2012, 3:12 pm

        My hands are dirty too, what are you afraid of?

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      • Kate B.

        Kate B. February 1, 2012, 3:29 pm

        Afraid?

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      • Brad

        Brad February 1, 2012, 9:06 pm

        You’re trembling…

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      • Kate B.

        Kate B February 1, 2012, 10:42 pm

        I’m not trembling…

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  • avatar

    pamplemousse February 1, 2012, 8:47 am

    Go Wendy…

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  • avatar

    anonymous February 1, 2012, 8:53 am

    Long-term relationships, whether in the context of marriage or not, take commitment from both partners, as well as the maturity to take responsibility for the strength of the relationship. Sadly, it doesn’t sound like the guy has either.

    LW, you might consider turning it back on him: “What are you planning to do to salvage this relationship? There is a child involved here, brought into the world through no action of his/her own, and we need to consider his/her needs first.” Sometimes it takes a calm request to slap them into realizing what they’re saying.

    I’m also concerned about your maturity, LW. If you’re going to raise these children, you need to think about what kind of example you’re able to provide for them — a drama-free life where the mom is secure in her own worth rather than being a puppet who’s controlled by the dad.

    Please write back with an update. We’re concerned about you!

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  • avatar

    kittyk February 1, 2012, 9:01 am

    Well said Wendy- holy hell LW- it is so not okay that your boyfriend asked you to move out for a couple of weeks. Since you’re currently pregnant with your second child with him this is not the time for any sort of ‘trial separation’- even if it were, if he’s the one who wants to try some time apart, he needs to get out for a couple of weeks. My gut reaction is kick him out as he doesn’t seem to want to put any actual effort into rebuilding the relationship. Best of luck to you, LW.

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  • rainbow

    rainbow February 1, 2012, 9:01 am

    This is one of Wendy’s greatest answers ever.

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  • avatar

    Amanda February 1, 2012, 9:13 am

    Wendy, you are amazing! I’m in agreement with everyone and I think that this douche would benefit from a good slap upside his head. He wants YOU to move out? Seriously? You’re pregnant! Be assertive and tell him to move out. No, on second thought tell him to get the fuck out. Then, when he’s gone thank your good fortune for not having to live with an immature asshole for the rest of your life. Good luck to you and your children

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  • avatar

    GertietheDino February 1, 2012, 9:16 am

    This guy has no plans to work it out with the LW. DTMFN! What a douche.

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  • avatar

    slamy February 1, 2012, 9:24 am

    ugh! i know it’s just the PMS, but this article made me wanna cry. lately i’ve been so happy to be alone and this solidified it. sorry, got nothing to add (except: what an asshole!!!)

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    • avatar

      ReginaRey February 1, 2012, 9:36 am

      Ha, I feel you. I’m pretty darn content with my single life, and don’t even know how I’d fit a boyfriend in to my schedule anymore! I think it’s going to take a *really* awesome dude to coax me out of my happy singledom.

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      • rainbow

        rainbow February 1, 2012, 9:53 am

        Same here. I’m so nice to myself and I’m having so much fun alone that it would take a seriously amazing dude to make me want to give him some space in my life and see if he can treat me as well as I do.

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      • avatar

        evanscr05 February 1, 2012, 10:13 am

        I was always content when I was single. I don’t get why people can’t be happy just being them and enjoying the freedom they have. Sure, sometimes it’s hard not to feel lonely and ache for someone, but for the most part, if you’re comfortable in you’re own skin, it can be very liberating and enjoyable. Being in a relationship is certainly wonderful, but it has its own headaches. I always shake my heads at girls that can’t stand being alone. Good for you that you embrace it!

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      • avatar

        cporoski February 1, 2012, 11:33 am

        I totally agree. Except there are two kids in this situation. I think she should fight for this relationship. She owes it to her kids to try as hard as she can. If it was just her, I would tell her to walk away.

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      • avatar

        evanscr05 February 1, 2012, 12:27 pm

        I 100% agree with you. I was just commenting on slamy and RR’s comments. Anytime children are in the mix, the game changes.

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      • avatar

        jlyfsh February 1, 2012, 12:39 pm

        It’s also not on only one person in the relationship to work at it. If the other person is done, there’s not much you can do. Hopefully we’re all wrong and the LW’s bf will be willing to work at it, but it seems she may need to start embracing the idea of being a single Mom. At least based on his actions thus far.

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      • avatar

        evanscr05 February 1, 2012, 12:55 pm

        I absolutely agree. I think, for her own sake, if she doesn’t try as hard as she can to fix whatever is wrong, she may look back on it one day and regret that she didn’t give it her all, if only for her children’s sake. Sometimes people just shouldn’t be together any more, and sometimes that IS what is in the best interest of the children. My parents split up when I was 9 and divorced a year later. I wish they were still together (because, for the most part, what child doesn’t feel that way?) but I’m also very glad they are not. I love them dearly, and I know they care about each other very much, but they can also bring out the absolute worst in each other. They were not a good fit for each other, though they ARE excellent parents. Most of my vivid childhood memories are of them arguing with each other and me crying, so it’s good they parted ways. They both are, overall, much happier people now.

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      • Brad

        Brad February 1, 2012, 11:00 am

        What about *mostly* awesome, and frequently sarcastic, guys?

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      • avatar

        ReginaRey February 1, 2012, 11:34 am

        Sarcasm is an immediate plus, to be sure.

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      • Brad

        Brad February 1, 2012, 12:04 pm

        Well in that case you ought to join the nova meetup discussion. We’re planning on getting drinks in DC towards the end of February. Would be great to see you there.

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      • avatar

        ReginaRey February 1, 2012, 12:55 pm

        Whoops! I keep forgetting to peruse the forum in its entirety. Yeah, it’d be so fun to meet all the rest of you NOVA peeps.

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      • Brad

        Brad February 1, 2012, 1:05 pm

        Well you better stop slacking off because there will be a quiz on Friday.

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    • avatar

      bethany February 1, 2012, 10:08 am

      I was single for about 2-3 years before I met my husband and I LOVED it! I wish more people embraced the joys that come along with singledom!

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      • avatar

        iwannatalktosampson February 1, 2012, 10:21 am

        Seriously! No one judges you when you have ice cream and cheese for dinner. No one wondering why it’s 5pm and you’re still in yoga pants. No one to eat everything in front of you and never gain a pound, making you think you can eat everything and not gain a pound (you can’t, I tried). I was always a happily single girl too, and I just got a little jealous thinking of it.

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      • avatar

        meg February 1, 2012, 11:26 am

        Ice cream and cheese! My two favorite food groups. Think I’ll go have brunch now in my yoga pants…

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      • Brad

        Brad February 1, 2012, 12:00 pm

        You do understand that guys find yoga pants sexy right? They are not in the same category as sweatpants. Yoga pants make just about every butt look amazing. So if you want to wear leg-hugging butt-loving pants for long hours of the day–then you just go right ahead!

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      • Budj

        Budj February 1, 2012, 12:58 pm

        Wait…being in a relationship means people would judge you for eating ice cream and cheese for dinner? Doesn’t seem like I have missed out on much.

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      • JK

        JK February 1, 2012, 1:05 pm

        Depends on the person, before we had our eldest there were def. nights that we would eat whatever we felt like… now we have to act like responsible adults that eat healthily-

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      • rainbow

        rainbow February 1, 2012, 4:29 pm

        You mean once you have kids you can’t have fernet and dry capellettis straight from the package for dinner? Goodness, and I nearly went there. I’ll go back to the “don’t want children” camp.

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      • JK

        JK February 2, 2012, 7:07 am

        My husband still enjoys fernet (I don´t drink)… and you eat capelletti from the packet? like giacomo?

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      • rainbow

        rainbow February 2, 2012, 8:29 am

        Not really, but I joke about it because one of my friends does. He’s a hardcore nerd, not one of the modern ‘chic’ ones, and he doesn’t really have it in him to care about anything not related to programming. So his “dinners” are usually a 1 1/4 lt. Pepsi and half a bag of raw Giacomo Capellettini in front of the computer (he considers them snacks).

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      • JK

        JK February 2, 2012, 9:11 am

        Gross. I can´t even eat them cooked since my 1st pregnancy.

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      • avatar

        ReginaRey February 1, 2012, 1:09 pm

        Cheese and yoga pants are the loves of my life. I second Brad on the men-loving-yoga-pants phenomenon. Honestly, I wear my spandex yoga pants to the gym because I’m guaranteed a few doubletakes…girl’s gotta get her ego boosts where she can get them.

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      • iwannatalktosampson

        iwannatalktosampson February 1, 2012, 1:19 pm

        I love everything about your comment. I don’t know what it is about them but I swear they lift up your butt and resituate it in the most visually appealing way. Amazing. I also like to get an ego boost at the gym. Do you ever pick the most in shape person to run next to on the treadmill? And then have a competition with them that they don’t know about? Or is that just me? I think one time a girl figured out what I was doing and I had to run 7 miles…7!!… before I could leave.

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        ReginaRey February 1, 2012, 1:21 pm

        Ha! Yes, I’ve totally done that. I tend to avoid getting on machines directly next to hot guys, though, because A) I don’t want them to know that I can’t run more than a mile without dying and B) I don’t want to get distracted and go tumbling off the end of a treadmill. That’s not sexy.

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        iwannatalktosampson February 1, 2012, 1:25 pm

        Yeah I like to run behind the hotties. Therefore i’m not worried about my form and such, but I still get the motivational aspect. Is it weird that hott girls at the gym motivate me too? It’s kinda like why I love working out during football games. It’s like that 300 pound lineman with a gut just booked it! I can do it.

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        rachel February 1, 2012, 1:55 pm

        Phew. I’m glad I’m not the only one who enjoys ice cream and cheese for dinner.

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  • avatar

    Annette February 1, 2012, 9:25 am

    Oh honey!! Go give your little one a hug! It won’t change anything, but you’ll have instant proof that someone loves you and you are worthy of it!! If YOU want this relationship, please please please give Wendy’s response some thoguht, it really is good! Just remember through all of this that you are loved, by your child, your parents, your friends, and you have a new little one on the way that will love you too and all of them need you too!!

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    • avatar

      Flake February 1, 2012, 10:33 am

      This is a great addition to Wendy’s advice!

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  • avatar

    Emily February 1, 2012, 9:33 am

    What a douche.

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  • avatar

    Kim February 1, 2012, 9:39 am

    This guy — If he treats her this bad now….I’m pretty sure he’s looking for an “out” and turning it on her like she’s at fault. He’s saying we’ll go on one date to see if HE still loves HER and then she may have to move out.

    WHAT remotely redeemable guy tells his pregnant gf and mother of one of his children already that she may need to move out? There is a real problem with him.

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    • avatar

      Tel February 1, 2012, 10:47 am

      LW- your boyfriend sounds like he learned at the knee of my ex-husband. My ex pulled the same crap on me; and I did everything I could to try and make it work- separation and dating with counseling and he asked for me to come back as he said he loved and missed me.
      But the key thing here is listen to what I said specifically- I DID EVERYTHING. As time went on I noticed more and more that everything he did was superficial and a front. He did what he felt he needed to in order to keep me around and take care of him but he never actually engaged. When he could; he slipped back into his old ways and blamed me for everything that was wrong in his life. Thankfully; I had continued counseling and I was able to learn to become angry for myself and when he did it again? I did not even try to negotiate and I just kicked his ass to the curb. I told him he had had countless opportunities to redeem himself and I no longer was going to listen to any of his complaints, accusations, explanations or manipulations. I was done. Sometimes you need to learn the hard way and I am so proud of myself for doing that even though it really hurt and I felt embarrassed at first for making all the effort to save a relationship when there was no help from his end.
      Follow Wendy’s advice here; and do not wait. Do not do what I did- I had passed on having children because of the issues we were having so I let it go longer than it should have because it was just me, and at the time I didn’t think that much of myself until I found my inner strength to fight for me. I had to realize I was worth fighting for. You too are worth fighting for, and you have your children to fight for as well. Tell him you will not accept his ultimatum on your relationship; there are soon to be 4 of you in it and one he does not control all the power. Demand that he see a counselor with you right away and go without him if you must. It is important that you figure out why you feel that you need to “earn his love” back- somehow, you’ve given him the idea that he can treat you with complete disrespect and get away with it and that must end. You are definitely worth it, and you need to learn to believe it. You are WORTH love; and if things don’t work out you need to know this in order to move on in a healthy way for both you and your children.
      Also- see a family/divorce lawyer right away. Do not wait for him. You need to know what needs to be done to protect you and the children in all ways- financially and otherwise. And get the paperwork started so it is ready to go if it all goes to hell. He has already shown an incredible lack of regard for the family as a whole and is looking for a way out. He is a child and you need to protect the ones who actually are. I am not saying that he may not turn this around and actually become a real person again- who knows? He just might surprise us all here. But I have been there, and someone who behaves like this is not likely to learn from his mistakes. People who are generally this selfish don’t because it is never about anything but what they want, and no one else matters in their worldview. Don’t let him have more than one chance. He does not deserve it. You and your children however- deserve all the chances in the world. Go and take them.

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  • avatar

    mcminnem February 1, 2012, 10:09 am

    And it’s these letters that make me want to go home, hug my man, and say “Thanks for not being a douche.” ‘Cause man, we have our own issues, but this?

    I just can’t even. I can’t get my thoughts straight enough to write a decent response. Just, NO. You don’t get to do that, dude. You don’t get out of being a dad that easily. You don’t get out of being a partner that easily. You don’t stake a relationship and the lives of your two kids on one date. You don’t kick your pregnant girlfriend out of your home to “see if you miss her”. You just don’t.

    LW, if this guy was a decent guy, if he had any feelings left at all for you or his kids, the very thought of you leaving like that would just be…unthinkable. Because hey, what happens if you go, and realize YOU don’t miss HIM? What if you won’t come back? No guy who actually wants a relationship would take that risk so casually. This guy is using this “lost the spark” BS as a Get Out of Jail Free card.
    But he doesn’t get to do that. Right now, he’s counting on you to want to stay, so he can call the shots. So I say kick him to the curb. If he does actually care, he’ll react REALLY FAST to the idea of losing you for real – if not, then at least things ended on your terms and you can focus on raising your kids in a stable environment. One where they aren’t in danger of being kicked out on a whim because their dad has “lost the spark.”

    Jeez.

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    • avatar

      painted_lady February 1, 2012, 8:20 pm

      This is brilliant. And yes, half the time reading some of these letters, painted_dude gets a big hug and a “thank you.”

      I know sometimes in relationships you go into crisis control mode where you try to avert the most immediate bad thing on the horizon, but even in some awful parallel universe where my boyfriend pulled a stunt like this and didn’t get kicked to the curb, um, YESTERDAY, I don’t know that I’d ever be able to trust him again. If he’d do that to me while we had one kid and another on the way, he wouldn’t feel too bad about doing it in another three years. I wouldn’t be able to live like that, never knowing when he would do it again.

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  • Heather

    sunsetdrive February 1, 2012, 10:19 am

    Wow, wow LW. You don’t deserve this.

    I know it’s probably not what you want to hear, but I bet dollars to donuts he isn’t truly concerned about salvaging your relationship. Someone who really wants to make things work will not ask you, when you are pregnant with his second child, to move out. To see if he misses you? Truly one of the flimsiest excuses I’ve ever heard. He will suggest things you two can do as a TEAM effort, i.e. counseling, identifying problems, etc.

    And like I said, this might sound harsh and a couple commenters have touched on this, I personally think he’s just looking for an easy out because he is bored/slash uninterested. I wouldn’t be surprised if his intention were to, um, see another woman or whatnot while you were away. And that way he could use the “we were on hiatus” excuse. I just fear something like that will happen with the information you’ve given us.

    He is the father of your children, and that will never change. You are tied to this guy inexplicably for life. I truly believe that you should at least TRY to make it work for your children, but I’ve said it in other posts and I’ll say it here-being a mother and being a significant other are not one in the same. You are not obligated, and it would likely even be bad for your family, to stay in a relationship in which you are not appreciated, loved, or treated how you deserve.

    If you think we are being harsh towards this guy, we’re only going off of how we’re interpreting what was in your letter. I understand you might be prone to defending his actions (as is the case with many LW’s who update), but PLEASE consider what we all have said. You have nothing to gain by lying to yourself about the seemingly less than stellar qualities of this man.

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  • avatar

    Flake February 1, 2012, 10:24 am

    Firstly, I agree with what Wendy said.
    Secondly, this reminds me of the “My BF deployed and I am pregnant” letter.
    You have to think long and hard WHY you want to save this relationship. I understand that having children with this guy makes it hard to just get up and leave (though apparently not for him). WHY do YOU want to stay in this relationship? Do you love HIM or do you love the idea of what your relationship once was? Having children changes everything, and it looks like both of you had some help until recently. Now that you are on your own, your BF is failing miserably at being a responsible father and a partner. Just imagine if tomorrow you were to meet a man who would love you and your kids and who would do everything to earn your love an respect, and who would treat you the way you deserve to be treated. Would you still stay with your BF?
    You cannot go back in time to where you were carefree and responsibility-free. You cannot bring back what your relationship once was. You can only hope it grows and evolves and adapts to all the new changes in your life. It looks like your BF is not in the same place as you are.
    Also, you have done nothing wrong. He is the one who “lost” your love. He is the one who should be earning it back.

    P. S. DO NOT MOVE OUT. If it comes to that, make sure that he is the one to leave.

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    • avatar

      Flake February 1, 2012, 10:32 am

      On the side note, all those letters make me depressed… Is it the weather? We have children, and I hope to God that I never have to think about it, but that is definitely not the only reason that we are staying together..

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    • avatar

      Flake February 1, 2012, 10:49 am

      Also, your child is your biggest priority right now. DO NOT put him through the trauma of moving out for a couple of weeks just for the convenience of the “father” (the quotation marks are there on purpose). He is old enough to understand the emotions that you are going through. If you have any doubts about your own fault in this, THE KID DOESN’T DESERVE THIS.

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    • avatar

      Flake February 1, 2012, 10:54 am

      Oh, and lastly, do see a divorce lawyer. He/She will advise you better on why you shouldn’t move out and what to do in case he does.

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  • avatar

    Marina February 1, 2012, 10:25 am

    I always like to give people the benefit of the doubt, and there are not a lot of things that I’d consider unforgivable.

    A man telling his pregnant girlfriend to LEAVE HER HOME to see if he misses her is unforgivable. I’m sorry. Just the fact that he suggested that would kill any love I had for him.

    Don’t try to rebuild the love. Please. If he could even suggest such a thing, he doesn’t love you, and he’s not someone you want as your partner.

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    • Leroy

      Leroy February 1, 2012, 11:04 am

      His request, for her to move out, is so over the top that I wonder if there’s some explanation. Because the LW doesn’t seem as concerned about the moving as she does passing his ridiculous tests. So maybe it’s that they’re living in a property that belongs to his family, or that it’s in an area where it wouldn’t be safe for her to live alone with the kids?

      I have no idea, but this does seem like a set-up. He’s probably going to make this gesture and then use it to justify leaving her.

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      • avatar

        Renee February 1, 2012, 11:10 am

        If she moves out with the kids (change of legal address), she can go after child support. So he still has responsibilty of the home, plus a good amount of court order pay to LW.

        Boyfriend just isn’t thinking straight.

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        meg February 1, 2012, 11:42 am

        I’m guessing he wants her to move back in with her parents, since that’s where they lived for awhile already. That would make it more “convenient” for her to be the one to move.

        Don’t do it LW!! If he wants to break up your family, he can be the one to leave; don’t let him manipulate you any longer.

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      • avatar

        GertietheDino February 1, 2012, 12:34 pm

        Or move someone else in…and then bar the LW from the house.

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      • avatar

        KL February 2, 2012, 8:20 am

        My theory is similar, but it’s more “interested in some woman, planning to have her over during the ‘time off’ and pretend he’s single, and then pick back up with the LW if it doesn’t work out with the new woman.” He’s hedging his bets.

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  • rainbow

    rainbow February 1, 2012, 10:36 am

    Also, isn’t it suspicious that he was OK with your relationship when you were living with your parents, and now that you guys have your own place he wants you and your kids out of it so he can take over and do whatever he pleases? It makes me think he was in it for the rent-free housing.

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    • avatar

      ReginaRey February 1, 2012, 10:52 am

      Agreed. I think he got used to having less responsibility. I’m sure grandma and grandpa helped out with the baby, and the housing was likely cheap if not free. Now that he’s got to actually take on a full load of responsibility…he’s poised to run.

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      • Brad

        Brad February 1, 2012, 11:18 am

        Yup he’s just another man-child who racked up his responsibilities card and is trying to get by just paying the minimum balance.

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      oldie February 1, 2012, 12:11 pm

      Only partly. He was mainly in it to have a woman willing to have his kids. I live in a small city. There are a lot of twenties guys with kids. The kids live with the single Mom and the guy is off in search of another woman to have his kids. It makes him feel like a big man. Most of these single moms get zippo support from their ex. They make no money on the books, change addresses, run the streets and clubs.

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  • avatar

    D February 1, 2012, 10:38 am

    I don’t typically comment…but I have to say…Wendy, you said it perfectly!
    On The Rocks…for yourself and for your kids, please, read and re-read Wendy’s advice. If he isn’t willing to put effort in, he isn’t worth your time of trying.

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  • landygirl

    landygirl February 1, 2012, 10:56 am

    This loser can’t put you on a PIP to see if the relationship will work out. What a chump. Wendy rocks.

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  • avatar

    artsygirl February 1, 2012, 11:01 am

    Occasionally I look at my friends who majored differently than I and imagine what it would be like to have a grown up paycheck (damn you humanities) with benefits, stock options, and a company car. I imagine chucking all my hard work and getting a do – over, but that is not the way life works. The older you get the more you realize that you cannot do it all. You cannot be a ballerinafirefighterdoctor because life is a path and it gets hard to deviate and start at the beginning again. LW your partner wants a do-over. He is looking at the family you two have created and suddenly is thinking that being a single man is a lot more fun than a committed dad. Depending on your age (I am guessing you two are in your early 20s), he probably has a lot of friends that get to whoop it up while he is changing diapers. This might just be a bit of a quarter life crisis, but no matter what you need to nip it in the bud. He does not get the chance to dip his toes in singledom just to see if the grass is greener. I suggest sitting down with him and explaining that the limbo he has put you in is painful and if he is unsatisfied with the relationship then the two of you should seek couples therapy. Good luck!
    P.S. Also do NOT marry him unless he shows that he is in the for the long haul. You two are tied together for the next 18 years because of the children, if you marry him and divorce a few months down the line it just becomes more complicated.

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  • avatar

    Renee February 1, 2012, 11:05 am

    Woo Hoo Wendy!!!

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  • taurons

    atlimbo February 1, 2012, 11:15 am

    *slow clap*

    PERFECTION in advice form, Wendy! Love it!

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  • Jess

    Jess of CGW February 1, 2012, 11:25 am

    Everything that Wendy said.

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  • avatar

    painted_lady February 1, 2012, 11:35 am

    I’m curious, LW. I’m curious how your boyfriend was able to get all of that out of his mouth with your foot firmly entrenched in his ass. Because that’s what any self-respecting person would do with, “We need a date, and if it doesn’t work, why don’t YOU move out?” I’m sorry, FUCK THAT. I don’t mean to ride you for having no self-respect, but you don’t deserve to be treated as if he’s doing you a favor by allowing you in his presence, and you shouldn’t put up with it. It is NOT your job to fix a relationship with a man who wants you to go away so he cam see if he misses you. There’s a saying I learned from Tim Gunn – you’re in the monkey house. It’s like this: you walk into the monkey house at the zoo, and the smell is so bad it makes your eyes water. But after a minute, it smells less awful. And after like ten, you don’t even notice it anymore. You’re in the monkey house, LW. You’re so close to the situation you don’t even smell the stench.

    Here’s a rather rant-y question. In the last couple of years, I have had several friends whose husbands and boyfriends, shortly before or after the birth of a child, have decided that they weren’t really up to the challenge of parenting. Obviously a woman can’t leave the husband AND the unborn baby shortly before the birth, and I know there have got to be women out there who have left newborns, but in my experience it’s men. And don’t misunderstand, I know it isn’t all men, or even more than a tiny percentage of men, but it seems men are the larger percentage of folks who do this. Am I right in thinking this? And if so, why? Is it because men traditionally don’t have a lot of experience with pregnant women and babies and so don’t have any way to consider the realities of actually having a child till it happens? Is it a lack of ownership of the baby? Again, I’m not saying all men do this, just that if someone’s going to leave, it’s probably the man, and I’m curious as to why.

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    • avatar

      Flake February 1, 2012, 11:43 am

      I think it is because it is really really hard to take care of a newborn. And no amount of reading, talking or researching truly prepares you for it. If the father has any kind of integrity and dignity, he will stay and do his equal share. Also, because it is physically easier for the man to get up and leave. I do not understand how that is even a possibility in some men’s minds, but I have seen it too.

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    • CatsMeow

      CatsMeow February 1, 2012, 11:53 am

      Monkey house! I like it.

      And yeah, it does usually seem to be the men. While society certainly doesn’t smile down on them or encourage their behavior, it’s always seen as SO MUCH WORSE if a women does the same thing. I think it’s just easier for men to get away with it.

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    • Will.i.am

      Will.i.am February 1, 2012, 12:02 pm

      I think it’s much easier than that. It’s the emotion of not being attached to a life form.

      Look at how many letters there are that come through here about women missing their friendships with other women or men. Myself and most of my guy friends, if a friendship ends, it must have ended for a reason. We tend to not really want to chase down a friendship once one person decides they don’t want to be in it.

      I think men are just not as emotional as women can be, which is why I feel women are much better parents than men statiscally. This has been proven by how children are awarded to which parent in the court system as well. Women are better nurturers, which is needed when raising a child. I know my patience is super thin and a crying baby would wear me out pretty quickly. The one thing I’ve heard from Dad’s though, Dad’s that truly care about their kids, once it’s your child you will tolerate and put up with a lot. That’s what I will expect if I’m ever blessed to be a Father.

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    • avatar

      mcminnem February 1, 2012, 12:08 pm

      I think it has to do with the physical realities of having a child – a mom has nine months during which she has no choice but to contemplate parenthood and her baby – she carries it around every day. Dads, unfortunately, just don’t have that. That’s why there’s so much literature on helping a new dad bond with his baby – he never got the chance at that physical closeness during the pregnancy, so lots of dads (not all, though) need that extra effort in order to create that strong bond.
      Doing that can be hard for guys who really really wanted to be parents. If a guy isn’t really all that chuffed by the idea in the first place, it’s probably a lot easier to just brush off parenthood as a responsibility you can let slide.
      I think there’s also a whole hell of a lot more societal pressure for women to stick with their babies than men – that “it GREW INSIDE OF YOU, how could you not just love it with all your being???” pressure. Which is why postpartum depression is so nasty – it’s compounded by the guilt of “I didn’t immediately fall in love with it, I’m a horrible horrible failure as a person/woman/mother.” And think of the reactions we have – if we hear that a man left his pregnant wife or newborn child, we kinda go “meh, sure he did. Douche.” whereas if we hear of a mother who left her baby, we get this whole scandalized response – she’s a terrible human being, a monster, a failure. We judge women much more harshly for that kind of thing.

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  • avatar

    Sarah February 1, 2012, 11:47 am

    Ug, christ. How does this guy not have the self actualization to go: “Ok, if you don’t make me fall in love with you again on this one date then you mov—-lololol, sorry, I’m being such a dick, right?” He’s like a douchebag Prince Charming. And THEN to go, “maybe when I make you move out I’ll miss you.”

    Ahhhhhh f*ck this guy. I’m not even pissed at him that he fell out of love (although I get the feeling he has no idea what that even means) with the LW, I’m pissed that he’s stringing along the LW because he’s too cowardly (or stupid) to make a good decision and, oh I don’t know, THREATENING TO KICK THE PREGNANT MOTHER OF HIS CHILDREN OUT so he can “miss her”. Here’s his decisions if he wants to be a real adult (like, I don’t know, a FATHER should be): Either you both stay and you do exactly what Wendy recommends to fix your relationship for each other or HE leaves and let’s you move on. But honestly, I would suggest finding a partner who isn’t going to try to back out of this whole “being in an adult relationship and family” thing like its a lease to a Ford Fiesta.

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    • avatar

      painted_lady February 1, 2012, 11:59 am

      “Like it’s a lease to a Ford Fiesta.”

      YES. You can’t trade in kids! They don’t come with a factory warranty, and you can’t even leave them on the freeway for someone to haul off for you because you don’t want them anymore. The only choice you get is not to have them in the first place.

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      • caitie_didnt

        caitie_didnt February 1, 2012, 12:07 pm

        Seriously, the revolting part of this letter is not that he’s unsure about his feelings (although that’s still kind of lame), it’s that he’s trying to just back out of his adult responsibilities!!! Once you’ve had a kid you really just don’t get to go “eh, not for me” and peace out.

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  • Will.i.am

    Will.i.am February 1, 2012, 11:52 am

    This is what makes me happy about not having children yet. Nothing is scarier than ending a relationship and then being reminded of that person everyday, because your child looks like them. This story reminds me of many episodes of “Teen Mom.”

    Remember, you can’t keep someone around who is hinting at wanting to leave. Why would you want to keep someone around who has no desire to be there in the first place? I rather struggle and be alone, then miserable with someone who doesn’t love me and our children.

    Also, the longer you stay, the better chance of you deciding that this is what true love is. True love is not the little kibbles and bits you are getting from him. True love is wanting to make sure you, the children, and himself are safe and as happy as possible. I could deal with him not caring about me, but to crap on his own children is unforgivable.

    My father hasn’t been in my life in over 14 years and I plan to continue to keep it that way. I’m not going to chase after someone who’s actions have told me they don’t care to be a part of my life. To me, it’s dumb and a waste of time. I could better allocate that time with family and friends, who tend to show me that they care.

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    • avatar

      Flake February 1, 2012, 12:00 pm

      “Nothing is scarier than ending a relationship and then being reminded of that person everyday, because your child looks like them.”

      It scares me to think that children get blamed for the “sins” of their parents. A child is an individual with his/her own personality. And it absolutely does not matter who he or she looks like.

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      • Will.i.am

        Will.i.am February 1, 2012, 12:07 pm

        My comment leans more on the lines why men and women stay in bad relationships once children are had together. Everytime you see your child, you are reminded of the person that helped create that child with you. Nothing can ever make XYZ not be ABC’s Father or Mother.

        The child may also remind you of all the good times you had with their Father or Mother and cloud out all the bad times. Think about how often we think about old relationships and old friendships. How often do we focus on the positive compared to the negative?

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        Flake February 1, 2012, 12:14 pm

        My problem with that statement is that child is not a reminder of anything..He is not a souvenir that you got on your vacation. In my opinion, you cannot look at a child as anything else than a complete, separate individual. I have a friend who is a single mom to a great 2-year old boy, but even now, when he does something “wrong”, the way little boys tend to do a lot, she says that’s his father’s side of him. I feel bad for him knowing that he will grow up thinking that the only things he got from his father are the his bad habits… and that he is already bad, and there is nothing he can do about, because he happens to have the “wrong” father.

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        iwannatalktosampson February 1, 2012, 12:25 pm

        That’s all great in theory, but you can’t say that when you’re looking at a child you don’t see their parents in them. I mean it’s the whole 50/50 nature/nurture thing. I don’t think Will.I.Am. (although I probably shouldn’t speak for him) was meaning it in an insulting way. If you just get divorced you can go your separate ways, but if you have kids you are connected for life. And I am with W.I.A. in that that would kind of suck. I don’t want to have to look at a kid that is 50% of the person I no longer can stand. Obviously you would love your child anyway and not hold that stuff against him, but you can’t deny that it wouldn’t suck to have to co-parent with someone you can no longer get along with.

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        Flake February 1, 2012, 12:32 pm

        I really don’t know what to say to that… Only that when I look at my son, I see an amazing little person, and it is actually very surprising how much he is not like us.
        Also, my parents got divorced when I was 2, and though my mom doesn’t really like my father very much, she has always said that no matter what kind of a person he turned out to be, she is always grateful for the children that he “gave” her. I think that would also be my attitude an that case, although I hope I never have to find out…

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      • Will.i.am

        Will.i.am February 1, 2012, 12:32 pm

        Thank you. You are on the same page as myself. I know, since I was 3 months premature and required a lot of hospital visits and had ADHD, my Mom took care of me by myself. I can remember hearing my Mom say you look more and more like your Daddy everyday, or you sure are bone headed and stubborn like your Daddy. Those aren’t bad things, but I’m also realistic. Half of my blood line is him, so I very easily could pick up some of his traits.

        I didn’t turn out like him in my life endeavors, but I know I do some things in life just like my Dad did. For one, I’m a no nonsense kind of guy and the few memories I have of my Father, is that he was the same way.

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      • Will.i.am

        Will.i.am February 1, 2012, 12:29 pm

        I kind of disagree. My Father was a coward and his blood runs in me. There’s times where I have a cowardice about myself.

        I do agree that the child shouldn’t be a reminder of anything since it’s a separate individual, but I also know that I do look like my Father. Just like I look like my Mother. I’m not here to say that what I’m saying is the Bible or set in stone, it’s just my feelings on the matter.

        Just like my buddies son has a deadbeat Mom. No matter what, she’s still his Mom, even though she sucks at life.

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        painted_lady February 1, 2012, 12:42 pm

        I see what you’re saying, absolutely, but I also see what Will.i.am is saying. It would be awesome if we could all be so objective to think, “This is not my ex, this is my child,” but I also knew when my boyfriend of just a year and I broke up, that the Starbucks that we visited all the time wasn’t him, either, but just a Starbucks. And yet it was still six months before I could go in there again. An that was just a coffee shop!!! It’s not nice, and it’s not fair, but some of our feelings aren’t. And just because we try our hardest to avoid taking those feelings out on people who are blameless doesn’t mean it doesn’t still hurt us. So no, it’s not fair to take those feelings out on a kid, but I could imagine if the breakup was particularly painful or the relationship especially long-lived, dealing with that might sting, especially at first.

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      • CatsMeow

        CatsMeow February 1, 2012, 1:42 pm

        Ugh. When my parents got divorced, my mother and her side of the family would say to me, “You’re acting like your father!” in a NEGATIVE way. What a horrible thing to say to a child. My mom STILL says it to me sometimes, and my response is, “Well YOU’RE the one that mated with him!”

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        Flake February 1, 2012, 2:14 pm

        That was my point… You cannot make a kid feel guilty for being born. You cannot project your feelings toward the father (or the mother) on an innocent child. The least you can do is own up to the fact that YOU chose to have that kid, and now you owe him at least an opportunity to become an individual without making him carry your relationship baggage.

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        lets_be_honest February 1, 2012, 12:27 pm

        I’ll chime in here with my stance on that.
        I have no fond memories of my child’s father. We were never in a relationship and he’s never met my kid. After I had given birth, people (with no filters) would say ‘does it bother you she looks like him?’ and other things like what you’re saying. My response was that I think my baby looks like my baby. She reminds me of HER. She is her own person, sure, she has traits of 2 people, but I really don’t ever look at her and think of him.

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        Flake February 1, 2012, 12:33 pm

        Exactly.

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        lets_be_honest February 1, 2012, 12:37 pm

        I’m sure if someone obsessed themselves with it, they could certainly feel otherwise. I wouldn’t recommend it though.
        Another thing this reminds me of are children who were adopted and hear ‘you look just like your mom/dad’ when obviously they don’t. Or like William was saying about ‘you get that from your dad.’ I think thats nothing more than a coincidence for most things. I’m sure everyone has felt cowardly at some point. That doesn’t mean Will’s dad fathered all of us, you know what I mean?

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        Flake February 1, 2012, 12:42 pm

        I agree. I also think that saying things like “you got that from your father/mother” lessens the person’s responsibility. It’s like saying (sorry Will.I.Am I will use the coward thing as an example), “Well, my father was a coward, and obviously I got that from him, so I might as well give up, because it is not my fault I am a coward, it is my father’s”, or even worse “my mother’s for choosing the wrong guy to get knocked up by”…

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      • Budj

        Budj February 1, 2012, 12:50 pm

        Genetics play a factor in our personalities, but it all boils down to our choices as an individual.

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        Flake February 1, 2012, 2:16 pm

        I agree with the genetics part. But wouldn’t that give you an extra motivation to be a better person then your parent? My father cheated on my mother. Every time I had a temptation to do the same in my relationships, I would tell myself that there is no way in hell I will let that part of the genetic material influence my life.

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      • Budj

        Budj February 2, 2012, 8:46 am

        Cheating is genetic?

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      • Will.i.am

        Will.i.am February 1, 2012, 1:53 pm

        It’s much like a saying I guess. I’m a coward at times, because I choose to be. Just like my Father chose to be. That was a poor example to use now that I think about it.

        I think some qualities our parents have are passed down to us at times. My Mother can be a very big worrier and sometimes I tend to worry more about things that I shouldn’t. I don’t worry like my Mother, but I do feel that is something that I did pick up from her.

        I also found out that I liked to cook at a very young age. I can rememeber wanting to make my own breakfast and lunch when I was 5 or 6. Both of my parents liked to cook and that’s something I picked up from both of them. It could have easily went the other way as well, but I’m just stating that we do pick up things from our parents.

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        iwannatalktosampson February 1, 2012, 12:44 pm

        Yeah, that might just be one of those lessons you can onlyl learn from actually having kids. Like before you have them you imagine them as two perfect halves of both parents, but then when they are born they become something unlike either.

        That adoption stuff is creepy though! My cousin and his wife couldn’t have kids so they adopted two siblings, and i’m not kidding you they both are dead ringers for the parents. Like the same exact hair color, same eyes, same skin tone, it’s insane.

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    fallonthecity February 1, 2012, 12:04 pm

    This was such a great response from Wendy. I just wanted to say that this letter made me incredibly sad. It’s ridiculously manipulative of the boyfriend to be putting this kind of pressure on the LW – especially while she’s pregnant – and I agree with those of you who thinks there’s a possibility he’s setting up his exit, and he hopes to be able to make her feel like it was because of some failure of hers to bring the spark back. I mean, what a dick move. Ugh.

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  • AKchic_

    AKchic_ February 1, 2012, 12:33 pm

    Wendy has it completely right here. You don’t just get a do-over here when you have kids. I have four (if the LW didn’t know that already). I also have two divorces under my belt. If one of you moves out, expect it to be permanent. This is his way of easing you two into separation. Don’t let him be wishy-washy. Make him be a fucking man and have the testicular fortitude to say what he wants. So you two aren’t in “lust” anymore. That’s what being an adult is all about when you have kids. He doesn’t want kids – well then he needs to man up, move out, get fixed and pay his dues for the children he has and move on.

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  • Budj

    Budj February 1, 2012, 12:46 pm

    Stop NOT leaving things out, Wendy….I have nothing to add and now have to post pointless comments in an attempt to remain relevant 🙁

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    • Brad

      Brad February 1, 2012, 1:07 pm

      Well maybe you should start commenting on the posts before they come out.

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      • Budj

        Budj February 1, 2012, 2:03 pm

        I’ve been looking for a reason to hone in my claravoyance…I couldn’t possibly think of a better use for that skill.

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      iwannatalktosampson February 1, 2012, 1:12 pm

      Sooo I still can’t sign in to the forums, so you get to answer my question. Why are all 5 forum topics about food? I find it incredibly insensitive of dearwendy readers to not care about my winter weight I am trying to banish from my body. Carmelized onions? Really?

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      • AKchic_

        AKchic_ February 1, 2012, 1:52 pm

        My onion allergy was not appreciative either. *laugh* Especially since I’m on a very bland diet right now due to a stomach issue. *pout*

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      • Budj

        Budj February 1, 2012, 2:04 pm

        Unless it’s about food I can purchase somewhere I don’t care – so we are in the same boat, haha.

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        Sarah February 1, 2012, 2:13 pm

        Hahahaha, sorry about that. Its definitely only a dish I make for sexy sex holidays like valentine’s day or anniversaries for my bf because yeah, that sh*t will wreck a spin class.

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      jaybro February 1, 2012, 1:47 pm

      Totes agree. I have NOTHING to say because Wendy covered it spot on. Sadness.

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    SGMcG February 1, 2012, 1:53 pm

    LW, Wendy’s advice is SO spot on. Listen to her! Your main focus now should be to take care of yourself so that you can be the best Mommy for your kids. Make sure that the Douche-Dad’s name is on the birth certificate for both kids though – it’ll be easier to collect child support with that.

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    Lamia February 1, 2012, 2:16 pm

    Bam!

    That is all.

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    Meredith February 1, 2012, 6:19 pm

    Really??? WOW! When I was pregnant my husband was buying me flowers every week, bringing home M&M mcflurries every night and going out to buy me hotdogs at one am because I had random bi-weekly cravings for them. That’s what good boyfriends/husbands are supposed to do for the women who’s carrying their child. NOT telling you to move out for a couple weeks so he can see if he misses you. Fuck that shit! Girl, I’m surprised you did not choke his butt out right then and there. What self control you have. Either that or really low self esteem. Please do not try to make this your fault. It’s not, your boyfriend is trying to manipulate you into thinking it is. What a jerk. If he wants someone to move out, that someone needs to be him. Make sure your kid stays with you, whatever happens. Ugh!

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    Pinky February 1, 2012, 8:21 pm

    Okay, we’ve established the righteous indignation over the d-bag of a boyfriend.

    What I want to know is how financially dependent the letter writer is on the boyfriend. This changes things dramatically. Yes, it’s reprehensible to ask your pregnant girlfriend to move out. But, can she afford to pay rent if she kicks his ass to the curb? Can she afford the apartment, even with child support?

    So, dear Letter Writer, you need to lawyer up right now. Before you make any further moves, you need to find out what your rights are. If this guy is willing to throw you out while you are pregnant, chances are you will have a hell of a time. There’s nothing left to save, sweetie. I’m so sorry about that. Try counseling too, but it looks like it’s too late for that. Any man that does this to you, particularly when you are pregnant, really doesn’t have any concern for your well-being, or the well-being of his children.

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