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Old 07-28-2009, 06:35 AM   #1
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torn between my 12 yr old and my partner

My partner and my 12 yr old boy just can't get along, they can't even be in the same room, the tension is high. My son is going through some emotional issues and has very low self esteem and feels like he don't know who or what he is suppose to be, and my partner just doesn't understand that kids do go through adultlesence and many kids are snappy, moody, rebellious, bitter, etc...and my partner keeps referring back to child raising by his father, my partner is 50 yrs old....It is making it difficult on me because I don't know what to do to keep the peace.

I suggest to my son to just hang out in his room and stay away from my partner so they don't argue, try not to start a conversation and definitely do not make jokes around him, basically stay away form one another, but that really bothers me because my son spends too much time alone now in his room. He is very limited on friends due to no one lives in our neighborhood of his age, but when he does have a friend over he loves to go out bike riding, walks or watching movies, but alone he spends many hours on his video games and that is the only way to keep them two apart. I have tried to talk to both of them to pull their horns in and neither one will do it. It is like they both just wait for the other one to speak of something so they can jump at the other one. My partner is one that if he says something once and that is it. I want him to respect my partner, but I also see no respect for my child either...How would he feel if his ex wife would have allowed for a man to make his son feel that way like he is not wanted in the home?

I have tried to talk to each one and explain that it is tearing me up, I am very close with my son and I want to help him, but I can't help him in many things that he might need because my partner don't understand and acts like he is upset w/ me when I try and explain different things about my son. When I bring up the hurt that it does my partner thinks I am trying to pick a fight, but what am i suppose to do, make a choice? "my son or my partner?"....

I love it when the family sits down and watches a movie together or a family trip, but I am so afraid of that because I know my son is going to say something, whether it be an opinion on a movie or make a jokingly comment and it will upset my partner, I can tell he don't want my son watching a movie with us, he gets an attitude when I suggest my son watching something with us that he might enjoy, so lately I just tell my son we will try and watch something later just me and him, which never happens....Siblings always pick on one another and my 2 youngest are great for that, and that also brings tension because my partner gets frustrated about that and it is very obvious he does, but I have went through 2 deaths in his family and at each of the funerals they speak of their childhood growing up and the torment the siblings done to one another and yet he still don't get it that it is normal....They all laughed and it was a good memory.

Lately my son is so bitter and snappy with everyone now, and he use to be a little easier for me to talk with, but he hates the world and instead once again of being able to help him, I just focus on keeping them two apart. When my 12 yr old and my 8 yr old daughter decide to play together or just goof off, they become noisy and I am so tensed up that they are making noise because my partner seems irritated by it, he doesn't say anything, but he use to and he doesn't like that kind of noise in the house, he gets immediately tensed up and you can see it, so I tell the kids to calm down or go outside, which sometimes it is 9 p.m and then they might be too noisy outside....My kids are starting to turn on me because there are things we don't do that as a family we use to enjoy it because they are not the same things as my partner likes, and he becomes tensed and uncomfortable to be around and he doesn't realize he is doing this.....I am leery of even taking a drive or going out for a family dinner with my son with us, because I am just waiting to play referee because my son don't know when to back off either, and my partner being the adult feels he shouldn't back off....So here I am stuck in the middle of it all trying to keep the peace and everyday I just want to cry....I keep trying to do everything in my power to keep the home a even keel so the tension doesn't pile up and a explosion happen....I do not expect my partner to be disrespected by my son, but i also see little nit pics that is expected of my son from my partner that kids now days just aren't like that, every story I hear from parents sound similar, but yet he can joke with others kids around the same age, but my son there is so much anger between them two that there is no calm joking....My son was always put down by his older brother and always had to defend himself in all manners and when my son speaks of something that he feels he has knowledge of my partner makes sure that he again realizes that it isn't right and he don't speak to him he yells at him, again something he doesn't realize he does, and how can I tell my son to not raise his voice when my partner is doing the same? I don't know what to do..I feel I am caught up in it and it is hurting me because no matter what I do it seems to fail.....My son won't stop w/ the loud talking or hitting defense and my partner won't. I want to put my son in counseling but I know my partner won't get involved in that, he acts like his only involvement is the correct children and make rules, instead of being a fun person for kids to be around as well......My partner and my 8 yr old daughter got a good relationship and my 18 yr old disabled son have a good relationship but my 12 yr old and him just can't be in the same room, what can I do to help the situation?

 
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Old 07-28-2009, 06:55 AM   #2
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Re: torn between my 12 yr old and my partner

I'm a little confused. How many kids do you have exactly and are any of them his?

Here is the problem that is happening, your kids are seeing you repeatedly choose your bf's side over theirs and they are sick of it and therefore are acting out and being mean. Boys come and go out of our lives but your kids are your family and your responsibility and therefore they should come first before any boyfriends. Furthermore, any man who gets involved with a woman who has multiple kids had better accept the fact that those kids come first or else they have no business dating women with multiple kids.

Your boyfriend sounds like kind of a dork anyway, so I'm not sure why you're allowing him to treat your kids so poorly. From other stuff you've written about this bf of yours, he doesn't seem too sympathetic to you or your feelings or your kids feelings, just seems to care about himself. I think if you have tried talking to him about it and nothing works then you have to decide whether you want to stay with this guy. He doesn't sound like he's all that great if he isn't capable of giving you sympathy or empathy, doesn't like your kids at all and doesn't care how much this is hurting you, then I think you have your answer right there.

 
Old 07-28-2009, 07:01 AM   #3
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Re: torn between my 12 yr old and my partner

Get rid of your BF. Your kids come first....that is an easy conclusion!

Sunny

 
Old 07-28-2009, 07:14 AM   #4
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Re: torn between my 12 yr old and my partner

yep this is pretty simple.....you know what you have to do

you don't pick a man over your child!!!

this is obvious, isn't it? you need to get rid of your boyfriend and start spending time nurturing your son and helping him with his self-esteem and helping him grow into a man

 
Old 07-28-2009, 09:42 AM   #5
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Re: torn between my 12 yr old and my partner

I agree with the other posters. Your kids see you choosing your "partner" over them and it causes your son to act out. Why should your son be shuttled to his room just because your "partner" doesn't like normal kid noise? What kind of person nowadays expects children to "be seen but not heard"? Why should your son miss out on movies just because your "partner" is a nit picker? And then for you to promise you'll watch a movie with him and not follow through...that's just disappointing your son even more.

I've been in the situation where my ex boyfriend actually had the nerve to say to me "that kid is more important to you than I am, isn't he?" And I answered "you bet he is. He's my child."

Don't ever allow your "partner" to influence you to make your kids second to his wants (they're not "needs"). They will grow up resentful and will not want to spend time with you when they are adults. I know from personal experience...my "dad" dumped me off on my older brother on the weekends when I was supposed to be visiting with him so he could go out to bars. Guess what? I haven't chosen to see him since I was 18, and I'm 43 now. Please don't make that same mistake.

 
Old 07-28-2009, 09:50 AM   #6
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Re: torn between my 12 yr old and my partner

Kids first! Their emotional health is YOUR responsibility.

Your partner sounds like the sort of person that is always going to find fault with any given situation. If you didn't have the kids, he'd find faults with you.

Show him the curb.

 
Old 07-28-2009, 09:56 AM   #7
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Re: torn between my 12 yr old and my partner

your partner is a grown man and old enough that he should realize that being with a woman with children, he is going to have to put up with noise, crabby teenagers, etc. You need to say to HIM, please don't berate my son for cracking a joke you don't like, don't complain because of a little noise, etc. You should NOT be telling your son not to joke around and you shouldn't be telling him to stay away from your partner so as not to upset him. Don't you realize that essentially you're telling your son to stay away from you too, since obviously if your partner is there you are spending time with him?? You will absolutely ruin any relationship with your kids by continuing this way. You are a mother first, and as much as you may enjoy a relationship with a man, your responsibility is to raise your kids and show them the love and attention they deserve. You need to give your partner an ultimatum, either he treats your kids as part of your family, or he needs to leave.

 
Old 07-28-2009, 10:15 AM   #8
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Re: torn between my 12 yr old and my partner

Quote:
Originally Posted by dolejaly View Post
but what am i suppose to do, make a choice? "my son or my partner?"....
Yes. When your partner takes normal pre-teen angst so personally and when it has reached a point where your son is a prisoner in his own home, relegated to his room so as not to upset this horrible man his mother has brought into the home, then yes. And if your kids' well being is important to you, the choice is a no-brainer.

No wonder your son is angry all the time. It's bad enough his big brother bullied and tortured him. Now he has to deal with this bully of a man his mother has put in his home and who makes his life miserable. Your his mom, the only mom he will ever have. Put yourself in his shoes. How do you think it makes him feel for his own mother to put this impossible to please, bully of a tyrant above her own son? Of course he's angry. Anyone would be. Think about what you're teaching your son. When boys grow up to be men, they don't have to cower in their room anymore, they get to be mean and they get to yell and they get to push people around and have everything exactly how they want and anyone that annoys him gets locked up in a room somewhere, and women must put their man above anything and everything else, including their own children, and women are suppposed to take it when a man is angry and wants to yell and bully. Now, is that really what you want to be teaching your kids?

I don't mean to lecture, but I think as a mother, one's number one duty is to provide as loving, stable, healthy and normal an environment for one's children as one can. Any romantic interest or partner that is then introduced into the situation must get with the program and support the mother in raising her kids as she sees fit. But that's not what's going on here. You may not mind putting up with this guy's bullying and verbal abuse, but your kids did not sign up for it, and it's not fair for them to have to walk on egg shells and live like prisoners in their own home because of this guy. If you continue to send the message to your son that this man, who hates him and who is mean and cruel to him, is more important to you than your son is, your son will only grow more and more angry and will continue to act out more.

Last edited by Larrylou'smom; 07-28-2009 at 10:22 AM.

 
Old 07-28-2009, 03:42 PM   #9
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Re: torn between my 12 yr old and my partner

I probably should elaborate a little more details. My sons not angry because of the man itself, he has been angry for years, he has an emotional problem and has always hated the world, he is not a violent child, but in time I could see it leaning that way and that is my concern, I understand a little of his problems and have worked on helping him and I am probably the only person my son really talks with other than his sister in law, but he is getting more and more moody, (a normal teenager) and so his cross between the typical teenage child and his emotional issues it can be like dynamite. He has the same kind of outburst against teachers, principles for years and again something I work with him on and to have the patience. Now the partner never had to deal with anything like this beings his child was not like this, but again he never raised a child 24/7...and he doesn't give me any kind of verbal choice it is his actions that i play on towards my son. I know adults don't like to be screamed at especially if they are not yelling or punishing, so that is the kind of things I am talking about....No matter what it ends in a quick frustration match because neither one can just plain talk to the other one, whether they raise their voice or not the attitude is there. My son has just plain out yelled at me when I told him it was time to shut off his video game and time to eat, and when he back talks me my partner steps in and corrects it, maybe that is right or maybe that is wrong, but I can deal w/ my own battles w/ my son...yes I know he is a part of the family but I feel better dealing w/ the issues that my son has...

My partner keeps telling me that he took on the whole package, but to me if he doesn't learn the patience with the child that does have problems then he did not accept the whole package. For some reason men(not all, just the ones that I know) if they help me out in anyway with my son that is disabled that they have done this great deed because of the challenge that my disabled son can be. To me learning the facts of how all children can be is a challenge. Like I tell my partner I don't care how someone else's child is what I care about is what my child feels, and no child goes through life with a yes sir no sir attitude. When I tell my son to just stay away from him I usually put it in a little different words and not in the benefit of backing my partner. I try to not give any reason for my son and my partner to buck horns, but it just seems that they both know how to rub the other one the wrong way....My son is very outspoken and yes it can be sometimes not some nice things or an attitude that isn't the greatest, but I realize that is something that he will grow out of as he gets older. I understand that some of the things he raises his voice at my son when my son is flipping out on a video game, but again to me it isn't about correcting it seems more like a self satisfaction. I am sure that in time I will go down the same road w/ my daughter and she will have to always be in the right....But as of right now I have two boys(yes boys, because my partner is not acting like a man right now) that both have to be right all the time. I need for my partner to realize how important it is to me to spend quality time w/ my son and for my son to feel he is included into things and to pull his horns in on some of the things my son says or does....Its very important to me to do things w/ him. When my daughter goes to her fathers for a weekend i like to take that time and spend time w/ my son, not doing what someone else feels he should like but something he enjoys....and yet my partner feels we don't have that time alone either....

My daughter which is not by the same father as my boys has a very good father and is very spoiled by her grandparents on her dads side and my son is very angry over that as well and so even though I know I can not make up for the way my sons father is and has treated him over the years that I can't fix that either, but what I can do is do what I can with and for him....But, I don't know how to make both understand and for my partner to understand what I am also going through. He is suppose to be the adult and he may complain that my son is spending too much time in his room, but when my son is out of the room then one or the other to me it seems like nit pic like they are just waiting for a reason to snap at one another.
I just feel like I am torn between the two and it isn't about sides it is about the total respect and understanding...no one should bow to the other one, but try not to yell and raise their voice as if they are about to attack one another.....So it is both of them, my son does it to other people to, but they don't live with him so they don't get it as much, but my partner doesn't understand that i am working with him and consequences are not always the answer to solving my sons issues. My son is 12 and has had anger problems since he was 2 yrs old, and when I feel someone is nit picking it really bothers me and I don't know how to make other understand and I won't make a choice between a child or a man, no offence men,(LOL) but they all can be replaced, but children can't....It is tearing me up because it is putting a lot of tension on me trying to always keep the peace...to always try and just keep the two away from one another....As I said he gets along fine w/ the other kids even my oldest son which doesn't live home and my grandchildren it is just that him and my son just seem to have that natural bitterness......So hopefully that kind of explains it better about the situation...My partner doesn't tell me to make a choice, but he feels I show him no respect if I allow my 12 yr old to get away w/ his back talk, but to me sometimes I feel my son is no different than any other child he has his bad days and good days and that just because of one day he might have been more bitter that is no reason to hold that thought that is how he is going to be every time....I correct my son for his behavior, but how do I get through to the adult that to me is acting like a child.....As far as long term in the relationship for other reasons I don't think it will work out, but in the mean time I just want my sanity and to try an make things calm and not feel like I am just waiting for one to strike out.....I just feel that sometimes I get the impression its like a choice, but I have not been really given a choice...that isn't even a choice,,,,my kids are most important to me, I also don't want them to ever think though that they can disrespect everyone in life just because they want to.....

 
Old 07-28-2009, 06:12 PM   #10
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Re: torn between my 12 yr old and my partner

Show your son unconditional love even when he yells. This is obviously not acceptable behavior on his part, and you don't want to be an enabler. However, let him first know that you love him unconditionally. When I was younger, my mom spoke in a soothing, gentle (but not condescending) voice. She let me talk about how I felt by listening and affirming my angry feelings, but not to make me angrier, but to let me know that my feelings were legitimate. Rather, it is not anger that is wrong, but how it is expressed, whether destructively in outbursts or worse, or in a positive constructive way, to make his small part of the world a better place.

Of course, it takes time to let him feel validated, and the soothing, calming motherly voice may be what he needs.

You sound like a great mother, though, by the way, as you are obviously concerned about your son and want the very best for him. Not all mothers are like you, and even if he yells when you calmly, soothingly talk to him, know that he is not really yelling at you but really at the world. Know deep down that you are a great mother, as the definition of such a mother is not fixing all your child's problems (which is impossible for any human) but being concerned about one's child, wanting the best for him/her, and being there to listen to him/her and validate his/her feelings. Making him/her feel totally appreciated.

Concerning your child v. your partner, the question to ask is: who is worth loving more? Your child will always be your child, but your partner may not always be your partner. That said, to be fair, some partners are more faithful than kids. So, you have to let your partner know that you have a moral duty to love both your kid and your partner, but always your kid if push comes to shove. However, I really do want you to be happy and tell him (politely, as you seem to be polite) that if he is mature, that he will understand that you can love both your kid and him.

Last edited by kevpark; 07-28-2009 at 06:17 PM.

 
Old 07-28-2009, 06:13 PM   #11
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Re: torn between my 12 yr old and my partner

Also I might mention that although my son has anger issues and hates the world, he is not ADD, ADHD or Bi-polar, he just has always been this way, just now as a pre-teen he is snappy to everyone(the mood swings). I realize he is my son and as a mom I want to protect him by sticking up for him, but I also do see a issue when people make comments to me about my sons attitude and I do try and bring it up to him. It just is sometimes I feel like I am dealing w/ two 12 yr old and I can at times see both sides, but yet still want just the normal peace in the home, well as best as it can be expected. My son does have a tendency to talk a lot and it can be annoying but,to me I grew up being not able to say anything so I do allow my child to speak, whether it just be babbling or trying to get his feelings out, just w/ in reason on respect towards people beings I don't want him to feel he can disrespect adults. My partner sometimes don't realize what he feels he is just talking is actually yelling to others, even his own friends have pointed that out....I kind of see myself in my 12 yr old and I want him to be able to express pain, anger, sadness or happiness w/ out feeling guilty or in trouble, but again, as an adult man of 50 it isn't about, this is what I say and that is it either.....Maybe this is something that even I can't fix....

 
Old 07-28-2009, 06:43 PM   #12
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Re: torn between my 12 yr old and my partner

When you're a parent, every choice you make in your life and every move you make (or don't make) is setting an example for your kids. You have already admitted you don't see a future with this boyfriend. For you to stay with him knowing this information is setting a bad example. I don't understand why you're with him. He hates your kids, he doesn't particularly treat you very well. It all seems so pointless. This is just sad because you could be way better off if you got rid of the lousy boyfriend and concentrated on your kids, who need to be your first priority, not some guy who doesn't respect your relationship with your kids.

 
Old 07-28-2009, 06:54 PM   #13
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Re: torn between my 12 yr old and my partner

I agree. Your kids come first because your kids will always be your kids but your partner may not always be your partner. It seems that if he doesn't appreciate your love for your kids, then he isn't mature enough to appreciate you, as he doesn't understand you. It's hard to appreciate you if he doesn't understand you, you know?

So, go find a guy who understands you. And you can do this by getting to know lots of male guys as friends, and build trust with them, and find one who understands and truly respects the fact that your kids will always be number one to you. Lots of times, single guys with kids will understand this better, although there are good exceptions.

But rest assured, there are good guys out there who will appreciate the fact that you should love your kids first, and that you have enough love in you to also extend that love to him, as well.

So, go start making some great friends with mature guys!

From the bottom of my heart, I really do wish you all the best! You and your kids more than deserve it!

Last edited by kevpark; 07-28-2009 at 06:55 PM.

 
Old 07-28-2009, 06:58 PM   #14
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Re: torn between my 12 yr old and my partner

I agree, I think single parents with kids get along better with other single parents with kids because they accept the fact that the kids are not only a package deal but the kids will always be #1 in that parent's life. A single guy with no kids isn't going to "get it". Even if he claims he does, as you have seen from your own personal experience, your guy doesn't get it. He is completely clueless about how to be in a relationship with a woman who has a bunch of kids. He needs to either accept it and deal with it and let you be a mom or not date you. There is no in between in this situation.

 
Old 07-28-2009, 08:00 PM   #15
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Re: torn between my 12 yr old and my partner

There is never any reason to choose a lover over a 12 year old child. Your son may do better if you stop dating anyone for a while and concentrate on him and his siblings. Children absorb so much and isolating him from the more active areas of the home to appease someone, who is really insignificant in the big picture, can only have a negative impact on your present and future relationship with your son. Nurturing your children is the biggest responsibility you'll ever have. You'll have plenty of time to devote to adult relationships when your nest is empty.

 
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