I'm 22 and I'm in a relationship with a 29 year old. We've been dating for almost 6 months and we've very happy together. The only thing that makes the relationship difficult is that she has two children. It's not that I don't like her kids or that they don't like me, but I'm just not at the point in my life where I want to be around kids too much. Of course, I've talked about this with her and she has no intention of making me an integral part of their lives; although we do stuff all together some times, most of the time it's just me and her.
This really didn't bother me too much until she told me the story about how she got pregnant with her first child. She said that before, she never wanted to have kids. When she was 18 she went to get her tubes tied but they refused to perform the operation saying she was too young. When she got pregnant (because she didn't renew her shot for 3 weeks from not being able to get time off work) she tried everything she could to avoid the pregnancy. She attempted to get plan b, but was denied because at the time you needed a prescription, and in the 72 hour time frame she had to take the pill she wasn't able to get time off work to see a doctor. So she basically had no choice but to get an abortion and she was going to, but her sister managed to talk her out of it.
Now, don't get me wrong she's a very happy mother of 2 wonderful kids now, but this whole thing still bothers me.. Maybe it's the part of me that, deep down inside, wishes she didn't have kids. I'd be lying if I said I didn't wish that sometimes. But I also have a great deal of resentment against her sister because she imposed her beliefs on her and convinced her not to get the abortion. I don't see how anyone, be it her sister or not, has the right to make that decision for someone, especially if that person was so opposed to ever having kids in the first place.. I just don't see how she could have been so selfish as to make such a life-changing decision for her sister like that.
I don't know, like I said I know what's done is done and it's selfish of me to wish she didn't have kids. Just knowing that she's happy now should be enough for me. But I still can't get this whole thing out of my head; it's been at least 4 months since she told me all this and I still lose sleep over it sometimes. I just thought I'd share it and perhaps someone on here could give me some insight to help me sort it all out.
ONE MORE THING: This post is NOT about whether abortion is right or wrong. It's mentioned solely as a detail of the whole story, and any posts dealing with the moral implications of abortion are not welcome. Thank you
Last edited by shadow777; 08-06-2008 at 02:29 AM.
Her sister didn't make the decision - she did. For whatever reason, it was ultimately her own choice, and she is living with it, admirably with no regrets or resentments against the child. The least you can do is to respect her life and the way she is dealing with it. Having said that, the last thing she and her kids need is a reluctant male around. Her kids are part of her and you don't get to have the one without the other. You need to decide whether to jump in and embrace the whole family, or remain on the fringes or leave. Your honesty about your feelings does you credit, and you must be true to yourself before you can offer her and the kids anything. Sera.
One thing I don't understand: do you have a problem with your girlfriend OR with her sister? Is her sister still very much present in her (your gf's) life and poses a threat to you?
I don't know what her sister told her at the time to persuade her not to have the abortion. But I think that from the moment a woman finds herself to be pregnant (whether she wanted it or not), she is in a very delicate, changeable, fluctuating mental and emotional state. Anything you tell her may really affect her, so it is no wonder she changed her mind. Perhaps, deep down herself, she didn't want the abortion. Maybe she was simply afraid because probably the father was not there to give her the support she needed.
I don't know, there's a certain non-negligible age difference between you and her. Besides having two kids gives her a life experience that you still lack, of course. What I mean to say: you and she are probably at different stages of your lives and have different needs and ideas about life proper. Perhaps that is the real issue for you.
Something happens to most women when they give birth, and it's impossible to explain. We become so bonded with the child that it becomes impossible to imagine life without that little one in it. At 18, she thought she never wanted kids, and nearly didn't have one then. Something her sister said convinced her to go ahead with the pregnancy, and she ended up not regretting it. She even went on to have another baby after that one, and today she loves being a mother. Her sister didn't make the decision for her; all she did was help your girlfriend make the decision. At 22, you're not interested in having children, but some day you might be, and you may have children of your own eventually, and then you will understand the bond between parent and child. If you resent her children, it will eventually affect your relationship big time. I have a niece who has 2 children and has dated several guys since her divorce. There have been those who just couldn't handle the "instant family" aspect of it, and although each time she thought he might be "the one," she was glad to break it off because those kids are a permanent part of her - it's a package deal. All the wishing in the world won't change the fact that she has kids. If it really bothers you that much, no matter how compatible you think the two of you are, you need to move on and find another girl.
I think everyone so far has given you excellent advice and I can't add much to it. The only thing I'll say is that I hope you'll truly read what has been posted here and consider it, because the future of your relationship depends on it.
It sounds like you are mad at the sister, and what keeps you up at night is the idea that you imagine there was a possibility that you could have had this woman without the "baggage" of two kids. But I'm not convinced that's true. Your girlfriend wanted to end her pregnancy soooo badly but couldn't "get time off work" so she was forced to bring a human being into the world??? I'm just not buying it. I don't think she was as against having children as she made it out to seem to you. But that's neither here nor there. She is a mother of two now, and it's really wrong to be with a woman and try to fanagle time away from her kids as much as possible. It is a package deal. 22 is very very young, and it sounds like you just aren't ready for an "instant family." Just enjoy each other's company for now, but it probably won't develop into anything real serious.
At 22 its understandable that you don't want the responsiblities of a ready made family. It's too bad that the woman you are involved with has that. BUT she does, so it seems that you have two choices...you can accept her family, or find a girl who doesn't have any that you can build a life with.
I hope that you really consider this long and hard if you decide to stay with this woman. Have you tried spending more time with the kids? Have you made an effort to enjoy all the things they can bring? I know you are young, and I am really surprised that once you told her how you feel that she continued the relationship. Like another poster stated though I do think it will bring problems in the end if you remain with her.
Remember, the children were innocent in being brought into the world. They deserve more than someone who just "tolerates" their presence.
FIrst of all you really shouldn't hold any resentment towards her sister. Your girlfriend made the choice to have her baby, plain and simple. Her sister may have helped in the process, but ultimately she made her choice. She has moved on to have two children with no resentments which is a wonderful thing.
Now, you are young and you have every right not to want to be around children all the time. With that being said you have a choice to make. It is either accept your girlfriend and her children because they are a package deal whether you like it or not, or find a new girlfriend without kids. It sounds that simple because it is that simple.
I was a single mother at 27 and the last thing I wanted was to date a man who couldn't accept my daughter as part of me. I was very fortunate to find a man who not only accepted her but is now in the process of adopting her. Not every man is like that and that is okay.
Please do what is right for you whether it be being a part of their life of moving on without them. There is no shame in either decision. The only shame is in staying in a situation that you are not happy in and bringing everyone else down with you.
You can't dwell on the past and wish it away, or wish for a different outcome. It just can't happen. I agree that you resent the sister because you feel if she hadn't "interfered" then you wouldn't have to deal with your girlfriend's kids. Well, they are here and you can accept her and them, or leave the relationship. No other options.
At 22, I certainly can't blame you for not wanting a day to day with 2 kids. If you continue with this relationship eventually that's where you'll end up. If you truly aren't ready or wanting this, you unfortunately will have to move on. There's no third option.
PS: I do know a woman who gave up custody of her kids to move in with her boyfriend. Her kids now resent her and are having all kinds of school and emotional problems. So if you think that perhaps there's a third option which involves her somehow lessening time with the kids for you, it most likely won't happen. And if it does, it won't go well. I bet she wouldn't even consider this.
I’m not trying to come across as rude but, I honestly think that you have a lot of growing up to do. You can keep yourself up at night and be angry all that you want. That’s not going to change the fact that she has kids and to tell you the truth, you should feel privilege that you have even met her children. Have you even thought about how the kids feel about you and if they look up to you as a possible male role model? Have you ever considered backing up in this situation if you are not serious so the ‘innocent’ children won’t get hurt? Or are you only thinking about yourself?
Sweetheart, please don’t blame this on your age. I’m 23 and a single mother to a 5 ½ year old daughter. You are far too immature to handle this situation and I suggest you make some changes as you are looking at this from all the wrong angels. A single mother is rock solid strong, dependable, responsible, caring, generous, ect, ect. Some men appreciate a ‘real’ woman.
If you can not see that, then you need to find some chick your own age but don’t cause disaster to her and her family…..your being really selfish and unrealistic. I’m sorry for coming off angry, you are just an example of what single mothers need to watch out for.
Time does not heal. It simply provides distraction.
Thank you all for taking the time to read this post and share your thoughts. I found your replies very helpful in helping me sort all this out in my head. And also thanks to most of you for considering things from my perspective and not immediately jumping to the conclusion that I'm a bad person for feeling the way I do. Honestly, I think what I'm going through is completely normal given the situation. I guess I didn't really know what I was getting into when I started this relationship, and the implications of it are just starting to sink in. That being said, I know that I'm going to have to do some serious thinking about this and eventually overcome my feelings, whether it be growing to accept the relationship for what it is or not. The good news is I never feel quite this bad when I'm actually with her and her kids. Maybe it's because it keeps my thoughts from drifting away from the current reality of the situation - that she has two wonderful kids and she's very happy with the way things are. And I know she is, because she once told me if she had the chance to go back in time and change things she wouldn't.
Her sister is still an important part of her life, as she's the only one of her family members that she has a good relationship with. We've gone to visit her sister and her family on a couple occasions, and although her sister likes me and we have no problem getting along on the surface, internally it's been very difficult for me. I think part of the reason why I have such resentment toward her sister is because my girlfriend made it seem as though her sister had all the responsibility for what happened. It wouldn't have been so hard for me if she had said she decided to keep the baby herself, but the way she said it made it seem like the only thing that stood in the way of her getting an abortion was her sister. I know ultimately it was my girlfriend's decision and no one else's, but I also feel that, being in the fragile state she must have been in, her sister was able to influence her in some way.
Anyways, like I said I'm going to have to do some serious thinking and sort it all out, and the feedback I've received from all of you has definitely helped me. It's true that I didn't know what I was getting into, but now that I'm in it I know I need to make up my mind. And I know that if I can't accept her for who she is she's better off without me. But on the other hand in the months we've been together we've fallen in love and grown so attached to each other. And before long I started feeling that the benefits of the relationship far outweigh the costs. I do love her, and whatever decision I make, it's going to be that which is best for her and the kids.