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Old 05-19-2010, 11:53 AM   #1
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Question My boyfriend wants me to be more like his Ex wife

I have been dating a gentleman for three years and have been living with him for the last year. I have a 15yo daughter who lives with us and he has a 23yo son who graduated college in December who now lives with us. He also has a married 25 yo daughter who lives near and a 27yo daughter who lives far away. I am a very loving and demonstrative person as this was the way I was brought up. Earlier this week he sat me down and stared telling me about his German ex-in laws and how stoic and unaffectionate they were which also made his ex the same way. They never held hands, rarely hugged and definitely didn't kiss in public or around his children (he has been divorced 3 years and separated 1) We are totally the opposite! We are always holding hands, hugging and kissing. His parents and brothers and sisters in-law are the same. My problem is after all this time he is requesting that around his children (and 1 lives with us) it would be much better if I acted like his ex-wife and saved my feelings of affection for when we are alone or in the bedroom. In other words I am suppose to change my whole way of being. I love him very much but I'm not comfortable putting on an act all the time. I am genuinely a touchy feely kind of person, I don't think it's fair of him knowing the kind of person I am to suddenly put these restrictions on me. What do I do? Any suggestions?

 
Old 05-19-2010, 01:08 PM   #2
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Re: My boyfriend wants me to be more like his Ex wife

Well, I can sort of see his point in a roundabout way, but you've been together for 3 years and are living together - his kids are old enough to know the score! This would not sit well with me at all. It's good that he told you in a non-confrontational way, but still I would be bristling about now. If you can't be yourself around his kids, then why you be demonstrative around his family, your family, your kids, friends? I could see it if his kids were 6; but they're all grown adults. I would think that your bf would be proud to be able to show them that men and women can be loving and caring and not cold and distant!

I don't know what to tell you, other than I guess I'd be talking to him and letting him know that you feel it is very good for his kids to see different ways of people interacting, and that it is acceptable to show loving behavior. Otherwise, he is just silently telling them that he is embarrassed or even ashamed of your relationship.

 
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Old 05-19-2010, 01:50 PM   #3
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Re: My boyfriend wants me to be more like his Ex wife

My hubby has a wonderful saying "If I can't be me who can I be?!" That's ridiculous of him to be asking that of you! I can only assume that his kid(GROWN KID) said something to him and is bothered that he's showing affection to another woman and not his mother. I think he's old enough to get over it! AND if he doesn't like it maybe he can just grow up and move out!
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Last edited by xpcandy; 05-19-2010 at 01:55 PM.

 
Old 05-19-2010, 02:17 PM   #4
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Re: My boyfriend wants me to be more like his Ex wife

Hm.

Well, like I could see if maybe you were all over him- sitting in his lap, or straddling him, or otherwise making the kids think "Get a room." But just holding hands or a smooch here and there? Hugging? I think he's being overly sensitive to what his kids might think. He needs to chill. The kids are adults, with the exception of your daughter, and what you do in front of her is up to you, as her mother.

 
Old 05-19-2010, 08:40 PM   #5
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Re: My boyfriend wants me to be more like his Ex wife

Quote:
Originally Posted by EagleRiverDee View Post
Hm.

Well, like I could see if maybe you were all over him- sitting in his lap, or straddling him, or otherwise making the kids think "Get a room." But just holding hands or a smooch here and there? Hugging? I think he's being overly sensitive to what his kids might think. He needs to chill. The kids are adults, with the exception of your daughter, and what you do in front of her is up to you, as her mother.
I completely agree with this! Nothing more to say really.
Melissa

 
Old 05-19-2010, 10:30 PM   #6
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Re: My boyfriend wants me to be more like his Ex wife

Hello there. I'm not sure but I kinda need more info myself cuz you didn't really say exactly what you're doing in front of your kids. Like the other replies said in response, if it JUST kissing n hugging, its good for them both to see a good example. Like what's appropriate and what they can both have in their futures if they are married and live in good taste. Sounds like his suggested way would be kinda secretive. My parents are in their 70's and have been married 56 yrs and are quite old-fashioned. They've alwys kissed (a quick peck) and hugged and said I love you numerously. I've learned from them to do just that. I was even a virgin when I got married and I answer any and all of my kids questions, not feeling ashamed. I've made numerous mistakes, but, done the best I could. Maybe you could respectfully sit down with your husband, as he so respectfully did with you, and express our feelings exactly. You sound very balanced in what you've shared and I hope your husband will see that the both of you should take advantage of the wonderful examples you sound like you are! If his son complained (and he is 23) your husband should sit him down 1 on 1 and tell him the truth! Those kids r lucky to have parents with great examples to offer and need to be able to appreciate and respect this is how I see this post. Great post and wonderful responses people! Lol. Mykinzie aka Marla.

 
Old 05-20-2010, 06:02 AM   #7
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Re: My boyfriend wants me to be more like his Ex wife

Sometimes you have to make compromises. I can see his point, too. Although I have (luckily) not experienced divorce, I can imagine there are some tricky dynamics when new relationships form and step-kids are involved. I think he's allowed to feel uncomfortable being affectionate in front of his kids, who were raised in a different environment.

I think the best solution would be a compromise. Maybe certain things are OK, like holding hands, an arm around the shoulder, hand on the thigh, etc., but save the kissing and close contact for other times. Really, though, I don't think he's being unreasonable and I would not take it personally.

 
Old 05-20-2010, 12:42 PM   #8
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Re: My boyfriend wants me to be more like his Ex wife

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Really, though, I don't think he's being unreasonable and I would not take it personally.
I WOULD take it personal and I'd be madder than H***!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Old 05-21-2010, 01:20 AM   #9
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Re: My boyfriend wants me to be more like his Ex wife

I too would take it personally.

They've been together 3 years, living together for 1 and NOW he wants things to change.

His kids are grown adults, not young children who might be more emotionally vulnerable and if his parents and siblings show the same displays of affection I would imagine that his kids have been around that over the years already.

If the boyfriend has been fine with this for the past three years it really isn't fair of him to suddenly change his mind and tell wanttobeme she has to start acting differently in her own home.

 
Old 05-21-2010, 12:23 PM   #10
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Re: My boyfriend wants me to be more like his Ex wife

So, there's never room for compromise in a relationship? "It's my way or the highway!"

 
Old 05-21-2010, 01:52 PM   #11
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Re: My boyfriend wants me to be more like his Ex wife

i dont know caberg. I would really like to know what kind of physical displays of affection are going on, because as stated earlier, I think a quick hug or a peck on the cheek, or sitting next to each other on the couch and holding a hand or something should not be considered "over the top" infront of the grown children. However, if we are talking about sucking face half the day, and rubbing all over each other, then yeah, I totaly get this guy's point. But for me personally, I'm affectionate, and I require a little encouragement from time to time through out the day. For instance, my husband used to touch the small of my back when I was cooking, or he used to give me a peck any time I sat by him. It was nice, I felt loved and special. He noticed me, even after being married and having 3 kids. If he suddenly said that was too much and stopped, It would have hurt me very badly. So where is this guy's compromise if that's all thats going on? On the other hand, it's never a good idea to play tonsil hockey with somebody infront of the kids reguardless of their age.............or anybody else for that matter. So then.....where is her compromise. Tough call!

 
Old 05-22-2010, 08:31 AM   #12
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Re: My boyfriend wants me to be more like his Ex wife

no... hell no!!!

Don't change. He should give you a more detailed or a better explanation for why he wants you to change.

The youngest person in the house is your 15 year old daughter and she already knows how you are.

So, that leaves his 23 year old son who lives with you both and the rest of his family who do not live with you. But his son is an adult and he should not have to worry him.



Tell him you are not an AMAZON WOMAN!!!

HOOP!( .. and then proceed to kick his butt!!)

 
Old 05-23-2010, 09:25 AM   #13
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Re: My boyfriend wants me to be more like his Ex wife

I've been with my girlfriend for quite a while and I'm a lot more affectionate than her in public. She has said on occasion that she wants to cut it down, not because she doesn't want a kiss or a cuddle but just because she feels uncomfortable doing it in front of other people (that's not to say we don't touch at all in front of others!). One of the reasons she says it makes her uncomfortable is because she feels it can make other people awkward and ostracise them at times.

My solution to this was to tell her that while she may not be as publicly affectionate as I am that I do want SOME affection when we're out/with others. We've come to a happy medium with short kisses and little cuddles when the situation's appropriate for them, we also hold hands all the time which can give you that sense of physical contact.

Just sit your partner down and tell him that he needs to compromise as well, after all his children are fully grown and you have needs too!

 
Old 05-23-2010, 03:33 PM   #14
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Re: My boyfriend wants me to be more like his Ex wife

Well one thing I've been thinking here...the title of this post "My boyfriend wants me to be more like his ex-wife"...I think that's part of the problem here.

Just because SHE had a particular trait that he wants you to have doesn't mean he wants you to me more like her.

I've already stated I think he's being too uptight...but if he were to ask you to go do an activity that he used to do with her, would you take that as he wants you to be her clone, or just that he likes this activity and wants to do it with you?

I think the way you are choosing to perceive this is making it worse. Yes, he needs to loosen up, but you also need to not take everything as a comparison between you and his ex-wife. He's not with her anymore, he's with YOU. You win.

 
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