I have a daughter who is 24 and she stayed with her dad after the break-up of our marriage when she was six.
I moved out of the marital home and I had her to stay with me every weekend.
Now she has finished her education, the house is being sold so I can finally move on (and so can my ex-husband).
However, my partner of 18 years is making it hard to do so.
We’ve always had our ups and downs (I wanted to get married, he didn’t) and we are very different characters.
He is outgoing, headstrong and likes his own way and, unlike me, has never been married or had kids.
He said he would never give up his one-bedroom flat, so I sold my flat and bought a house, which I did up over the years, then I lost my job and had to sell it.
I moved in with him and I found another job. Then last year he had a near fatal accident and is no longer able to work.
Now the differences between us are starting to become more and more apparent.
We’ve been talking for years about moving out of London. I want to move to the West Country to be near my brother and his wife. I can’t drive and so would like a property within walking distance of a town.
He wants to live semi-rural and have a big garden or buy a run down property that needs doing up so we can sell it for a profit.
He has also been looking at properties abroad – but I don’t want to live in another country!
And he has now decided he wants to get married if he gives up his flat.
As my money will be paying for the house, I’m beginning to feel annoyed and we are arguing.
I’ve worked hard to get where I am today, plus it’s taken me years to untangle myself from my first marriage – and I now don’t feel I want to marry again!
Do I give in to my partner to keep him happy or stick to my plan of moving to the West Country and probably being on my own?
I love him, but he is not the type to compromise.
Am I being unreasonable?
No, I don’t think you are. It doesn’t matter if you’ve been together 18 years or 18 months, being in a relationship is about being able to compromise. Why should it always be you?
Moving house – especially if you’re uprooting your lives to move to another part of the country – can be very stressful, so doing it with someone you find it hard to reach an agreement with is asking for trouble. If you give in to all of his demands, you’ll be stuck in the middle of nowhere, feeling resentful because it was his choice.
It sounds to me as if he’s always been the one controlling your lives – deciding if or when you get married, for example. It’s always been his way or the highway.
Take back some of that control and you will find out how committed he really is.
Go with your gut feeling. Sometimes if it doesn’t feel right, it’s because it isn’t right!
Don’t stay with him just because you’re frightened of being alone. I’m not saying dump him and go and live in the West Country, but think about what you want and, if it’s your money, then you should have a say.
If he respects that and he loves you, then he should see that it’s fair.
More of our agony aunt Coleen Nolan’s advice on your sex, family, health and relationship problems