The current custody arrangement is a 50/50 split, but my girlfriend is asking me to only have the kids every other weekend. Even when we talked about compromising so that I could have the kids every weekend, she says that I need to be prepared to cancel if we have something going on. I have a fantastic relationship with my kids and fear that this could affect them now or some time down the road. I also think that my relationship is a tiny bit stronger with them than is their relationship with their mom right now only because she does have a new baby in her house and at times they may feel pushed aside (but not intentionally as she is a great mom).
When I ask my girlfriend about her moving closer to me, she says she can’t do that because she does not want to live in the town where I started a life with someone else. I fear that my kids will feel resentful or abandoned. My girlfriends says that the way we take them back and forth to stay with me or by their mom is too much carting around and that they need a more stable environment. She thinks they should be at their mom’s house during the week instead of spending half the week with me. My girlfriend gets upset about why I didn’t move after my divorce and why I chose this custody agreement. I told her it was because I felt that I was doing the right thing by my kids, staying close and being involved, and there was never anyone in my life after the divorce until her. I never saw myself as a weekend dad nor have I ever wanted to be. Please tell me what you think of this situation. — Devoted Dad
Your girlfriend sounds awful. I’m sorry, I know you love her and you have this amazing relationship and everything, but a good, kind person would not ask a loving father to move away from his kids without a really, really good reason (jealousy ain’t that), nor would she ask him to give up custody or suggest that young kids getting to spend equal time with both co-parents is disruptive to them or too unstable a schedule. She’s trying to manipulate you because she’s selfish and doesn’t care about your children or your relationship with them. She only cares about herself and her relationship with you, even to the detriment of your kids’ well-being. I cannot underscore enough how really fucked up that is.
Stand your ground and don’t move. Your kids are so, so lucky to have two co-parents who get along with each other and are really present and engaged in their lives. If your girlfriend sees a future with you, she has to accept that you’re a packaged deal with your kids. You aren’t a weekend dad – or, worse, an every-other-weekend dad – and if she can’t handle kids in her life more often than that, she’s not the one for you. Period.
I didn’t mind his staying with me as he said he was “looking for a new place” (even though he had no income). But seemingly in no time, it was months and he was still jobless and penniless and I was now providing for both of us. Eventually, he got PUA insurance, but he used all of it on stupid stuff (beach trips, clothes, food delivery, weed, bars, you name it). He has spent his days playing video games and hosting his friends while I’ve been working full days and extra shifts trying to make ends meet, and this isn’t even the bulk of the issue.
He doesn’t like/respect anything I like. He shits on my taste in music, shows, movies, books, hobbies. I love to dance, paint, be out in nature, and go museums and the zoo: There’re so many things I’ve tried to show him and get him to do with me, but he acts like it’s pulling teeth and he has such a negative attitude the whole time. Yet he expects me to go to bars and clubs and ragers with his friends and smile and be friendly the whole time. We do what he wants every day, literally. I couldn’t even tell you the last time we did anything that I listed above that I love.
I’ve been literally begging him to make me feel wanted for once. Plan a day where I get to feel special; I’ve told him 100+ times what I like, so he should be able to do that, right? Nope! So, I called my ex and we went on a friend date. Yes, he was my ex, so nothing happened. I just wanted to feel like someone actually gave a damn about me for a day. I wanted a day where I wasn’t paying for and planning everything and where I didn’t have to worry about appeasing anyone. I want to be the one someone is trying to make happy. Just for a day. Is that really so wrong?
But now he’s upset and said I hurt him and need to make it up to him. Like the years of my begging him to treat me like I matter didn’t hurt, like watching him celebrate everyone but me didn’t hurt, like watching him suck me dry of resources didn’t hurt.
Should I be sorry? Should I care? Should I just leave? — Feeling Unappreciated
No, he should. Kick the motherfucker freeloader out and move on already!