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Old 11.03.2011, 11:02
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Love is not being jealous of your partners children

A family member confided in me the other day that she is having some problems with her Swiss 'boyfriend' ... she is divorced & has 2 teenage daughters from her marriage.

The problems she tells me (& I have been suspicious about it) is the way he treats her children. Everything adds up to jealousy I think, though in the back of my head I find it hard to understand why a partner would be jealous of their partners children, but then, I suppose, it must be something to do with me being a decent guy (?) ...or normal...

Firstly, it's the way he addresses them with out using their names, acting like a very stern father when he isn't even the father. He also is rude to their boyfriends, won't allow them in his car as he says they make it dirty (these are two fashionable teenagers who don't even like mud on their shoes). She is caring, like most teenagers they do take the mick a bit but he refuses to allow her to do things like pick them up in her car from the bus station, buy them things, etc.

Funnily enough he gets on OK with her ex-husband but to be honest he's a bit of a wimp. I forgot to mention that he is quite well-off & not long after meeting they bought a house together (though he put up most of the cash).

The other day I was around the house with my family, I was asked by one of the daughters to unscrew a pickle jar & he did his nut saying (to me) it was 'his' job to do it. Naturally, I burst out laughing at his obsession about being the man of the house & then explained that it is he with a problem as she is actually my God-daughter.

The other day he also stormed off because she went out without him & came back (crying) 2 days later saying he was sorry (I found it funny as he is 49 years old & so arrogant normally).

I have advised her that she should get rid of him (although it may be complicated with the house) when she asked me what she should do. It's simple I said, if he is jealous of your children then he doesn't love you.

Was I right?

(I wondered if it was a too harsh thing to say but I don't like him, don't understand how you can be jealous of children & think he won't change with something like that)
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Old 11.03.2011, 11:13
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Re: Love is not being jealous of your partners children

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) when she asked me what she should do. It's simple I said, if he is jealous of your children then he doesn't love you.

Was I right?

(I wondered if it was a too harsh thing to say but I don't like him, don't understand how you can be jealous of children & think he won't change with something like that)
I don't think love and jealousy cancel each other out here at all. Maybe the very fact of being very much in love with someone makes one jealous that a second and a third person both have very special places in your loved one's heart.
Taking on 'someone else's' teenage children when you are basically at the beginning of a marriage is really not easy.

No solutions offered though.
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Old 11.03.2011, 11:21
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Re: Love is not being jealous of your partners children

I have been in a similar situation, her children were simply awful! It wasn't jealousy from me, but I was expected to behave like a father without any parental rights. They completely misbehaved and she ignored it. The son was expelled from the 10th year at school, and in the last month, without any references or reports. She has married someone else now, but at the time it caused me a lot of pain.

My advice is that the complete family needs to be councelled. When you have a professional independant diagnosis you can look for a solution. But hurry, these things take time to set up and often the final crisis arrives before the situation has been properly assessed.

Last edited by Ittigen; 11.03.2011 at 12:34.
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Old 11.03.2011, 11:22
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Re: Love is not being jealous of your partners children

As a general rule of thumb, I try to bite my tongue from making definitive statements (like "dump him/her") to close friends and family about their other halves when they confide in me, or even ask me outright if they should end the relationship - as no one knows the situation better than the two people in the relationship itself and you are only privvy to what they've shared with you.

Hence statements like that can possibly come back and bite you in the arse if what they've shared with you was simply on a bad day, they carry on with the relationship - and stupidly share what you've said to their partners.

Most awkward.

But since you already have, and seems like a good enough reason from your point of view - let it be. She can figure the rest out herself
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Old 11.03.2011, 11:32
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Re: Love is not being jealous of your partners children

There's always a fair reason why people feel the way they do. If he is a good person who obviously loves her then actually, maybe even a bit jealous, because children get alot of her love and affection, and they are symbol of partners life that he was not a part of.

It would be helpful that he recognises his jealousy is unfair and petty and indeed, he is making life miserable to both his partner and children in this regard.

But is it ok to say , if he is jealous of her children then he doesn't love her. I would say NO.
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Old 11.03.2011, 11:39
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Re: Love is not being jealous of your partners children

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As a general rule of thumb, I try to bite my tongue from making definitive statements (like "dump him/her") to close friends and family about their other halves when they confide in me, or even ask me outright if they should end the relationship - as no one knows the situation better than the two people in the relationship itself and you are only privvy to what they've shared with you.

Hence statements like that can possibly come back and bite you in the arse if what they've shared with you was simply on a bad day, they carry on with the relationship - and stupidly share what you've said to their partners.

Most awkward.

But since you already have, and seems like a good enough reason from your point of view - let it be. She can figure the rest out herself
I know what you mean but honestly, he is so rude to them in front of us we can only assume it's worse when none of us are there.

They don't deserve this treatment really, they are not bad children at all.
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Old 11.03.2011, 11:45
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Re: Love is not being jealous of your partners children

Sounds like a problem needing serious reckoning by everyone involved. She needs to assert who she is.

The identity of a person with a family is not just their own individuality, but also their role within their family. She is a mother with children. The wimp needs to acknowledge, accept and respect that. If he cannot, then he totally misses who she is and will find himself in a relationship with someone he doesn't really know.

The worse thing for her to do is to compromise her family for the sake of her relationship with the wimp. In doing so, she would be selling her self out, not to mention her children.
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Old 11.03.2011, 11:48
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Re: Love is not being jealous of your partners children

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Sounds like a problem needing serious reckoning by everyone involved. She needs to assert who she is - a mother with children.

The identity of a person with a family is not just their own individuality, but also their role within their family. She is a mother with children. The wimp needs to acknowledge, accept and respect that. If he cannot, then he totally misses who she is and will find himself in a relationship with someone he doesn't really know.

The worse thing for her to do is to compromise her family for the sake of her relationship with the wimp. In doing so, she would be selling her self out, not to mention her children.
I think the same way you do, realise what you are getting into but just because your new partner has children you should not take it out on them because you don't like that fact. It's also not fair on her, she is no less a woman because she has children from another man.
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Old 11.03.2011, 11:51
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Re: Love is not being jealous of your partners children

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we can only assume it's worse when none of us are there.
It may well be worse when you are not there but like you say this is an assumption. You also don't know how the children behave when no one else is around. Therein lies a problem, you do not have all sides of the story.

Taking on someone else's children is not an easy job. They have been brought up differently to you own way of doing things and this takes time and patience to change even if your partner is in agreement. There also can be emotional scars left behind from the break up of their family. It is quite usual for kids to play the parent and step parent off against one another. Kids no matter what age often do not tell the whole story and leave out the bits that make themselves look bad. Its not until you drill down and get to the bottom of it that you see the whole picture.

Personally speaking I would advise a family conference. All sit round the table and have an honest and frank discussion about the problems. That would gt everything out in the open and give the groundwork to start sorting through the problems. If he isn't willing to talk about things or admit to any bad behaviour on his part then he is a waste of time.

Does this guy have children of his own? If not than he may not actually know how to treat kids as he's never experienced having them.
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Old 11.03.2011, 11:57
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Re: Love is not being jealous of your partners children

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The worse thing for her to do is to compromise her family for the sake of her relationship with the wimp. In doing so, she would be selling her self out, not to mention her children.

"The wimp" is also a part of her family no? It is hard to love your partner with the "entire package" I know not ideal/right but quite human to be jealous or not that caring.
With kids already grown up (assuming they have boyfriends), the relationship with the "wimp" needs equal care?

But I agree to most of the things you said, he needs to understand his problem and stop illtreating the kids! that is totally unacceptable.
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Old 11.03.2011, 12:02
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Re: Love is not being jealous of your partners children

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I know what you mean but honestly, he is so rude to them in front of us we can only assume it's worse when none of us are there.

They don't deserve this treatment really, they are not bad children at all.

Hey Transition !
I'm 29 and left the parental house a while ago. My Mum met someone and is a bit in a similar situation as the family member u mention. My younger brother still live with them, and living on the top floor of the house is a blessing when you know my Mum's partner. My brother has to deal with him as little as he can. My Mum, my brother and myself have always been very close and we shared some tough times always supporting each other. My Mum would never give up on us. But she doesnt want to grow old on her own which is fair. Her boyfriend is jealous, emotionally immature and quite selfish. If my Mum goes upstairs to have a chat with my brother, the boyfriend is gonna have a tantrum saying she never spends time with him and she doesnt care about him. If she has late work at night (he is retired himself), he's also gonna complain. He pretty much needs a housewife with no kids. Which is not like my Mum at all. I'm just glad they never got married (eventhough we had to kinda conviced my Mum about the mistake that could be). They still have the house together, but if one day she cant take it anymore, she'll go with her share. Unfortunately to some women, growing old lonely is like a nightmare. So they pick the least of two evils. Just make sure the mother of your Goddaughter's knows she's got options and doesnt get destroyed by her companion possessivity and unconfidence. And how horrible he is that she'll always protect her kids first until he reaches the limit. There's no bound like family. Partners come and go. Kids dont want to feel like a burden on a daily basis in their own home.
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Old 11.03.2011, 12:03
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Re: Love is not being jealous of your partners children

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"The wimp" is also a part of her family no? It is hard to love your partner with the "entire package" I know not ideal/right but quite human to be jealous or not that caring.
With kids already grown up (assuming they have boyfriends), the relationship with the "wimp" needs equal care?

But I agree to most of the things you said, he needs to understand his problem and stop illtreating the kids! that is totally unacceptable.

I'm not so sure the wimp knew who he was getting into a relationship with in the first place. If the wimp is demanding equal care, it is precisely why I am referring to him as the wimp. A grown man ought to go into this relationship trying to figure out how to add to her life, not how to take away from it.

Pah.... a grown man expecting his lover to also be his mother? ... naw, not much of a real man at all.

Last edited by Phos; 11.03.2011 at 12:30.
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Old 11.03.2011, 12:05
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Re: Love is not being jealous of your partners children

Looking from the child's point of view, I had a terrible step father when I was a teenager and I don't think it's too dramatic to say that I still carry some scars from my dealings with him. It also soured completely my relationship with my mother - I found it very difficult to understand why she didn't stick up for me and it took me a long time to really trust her after she eventually did break up with him.
Ultimately she was a victim too. My stepfather had a long standing mental health problem, so I suppose he wasn't completely in control of his moods but although I can rationalise it all now it is very hard to deal with emotionally.

As a result of these experiences, and as a parent, I would not put someone before my children, ever. If there was a conflict between a step parent and my children beyond the everyday give and take, I would show the adult the door. Kids only have one mother and father, and they will leave home soon enough and have their own lives, at which point the parent can do as they please.

This is probably a very black and white opinion, with no room for compromise but it comes from bitter experience.
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Old 11.03.2011, 12:06
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Re: Love is not being jealous of your partners children

This is the worse part of such situations:

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Kids dont want to feel like a burden on a daily basis in their own home.
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Old 11.03.2011, 12:09
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Re: Love is not being jealous of your partners children

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Kids dont want to feel like a burden on a daily basis in their own home.
Absolutely
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Old 11.03.2011, 12:12
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Re: Love is not being jealous of your partners children

I think I'll stop complaining now about how jealous I am of my boyfriend's and daughter's relationship. I tend to find myself as the excluded one

In all fairness to the husband of your friend, being a parental figure when you are not the biological father must be incredibly tough. I find myself sometimes telling my other half off for disciplining my daughter in a certain way when actually he is completely correct and it is what I would have done in the same position. It's not easy for all parties concerned and requires a lot of communication and patience. The most important thing is that the kids have a fair and consistent method of parenting and this can only be determined by the people bringing the kids up.

I think your friend should organise a "house meeting" where everyone gets their say and all issues are laid out on the ground.
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Old 11.03.2011, 12:15
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Re: Love is not being jealous of your partners children

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I think your friend should organise a "house meeting" where everyone gets their say and all issues are laid out on the ground.
are you in IT or Management yes he should invite them all by sending an outlook/email request!
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Old 11.03.2011, 12:19
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Re: Love is not being jealous of your partners children

A very difficult situation - but only your relative can sort it out - but needs to know you are there for her if she needs you.

Our next door neighbour has 2 children from a former marriage - they are not allowed in his house, as his 'new' wife won't have them (they've been married about 15 years) and his is not 'allowed' to take them out or on holiday.
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Old 11.03.2011, 12:22
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Re: Love is not being jealous of your partners children

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A very difficult situation - but only your sis can sort it out - but needs to know you are there for her if she needs you.

Our next door neighbour has 2 children from a former marriage - they are not allowed in his house, as his 'new' wife won't have them (they've been married about 15 years) and his is not 'allowed' to take them out or on holiday.
That is bloody awful! I am not a parent but I really cant imagine letting anyone else dictate how I should treat my children, and what I can / cannot do with them.
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Old 11.03.2011, 12:23
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Re: Love is not being jealous of your partners children

Just don't get it either>
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