I really want to help my daughter and her partner. They’ve been in a relationship for more than two years and both have children from previous relationships. They’re made for each other and are real soul mates.
His son lives with his previous partner and my grandson lives with my daughter and him. The boys are aged six and seven, they’ve met each other and get on well, having days out, sleepovers and so on.
His son is on the autistic spectrum and can be challenging and moody, but they are clued up and prepared for the unexpected. My grandson is bright, lively and highly sociable, he’s doing well at school and loves learning.
His son is not so sociable and not doing so well, is behind and has difficulties. His father worries about how different the boys are in terms of development and feels guilty that he can’t spend more time with him, when he sees my daughter doing homework with her son and helping him progress.
He’s a fabulous dad and sees his son often, as do the rest of his family, and also has him every other weekend. If his boy is not so good on his visits, my daughter will take my grandson out so they can have time alone, or he will take him to his grandparents and stay there. Every angle is thought through.
However, his ex-partner is constantly phoning, changing arrangements, demanding money and telling him he spends more time with his girlfriend’s son than his own, and that his son wonders why he lives with another little boy but not with him.
The poor guy is torn in two with guilt and thinks the only solution is splitting up with my daughter and getting his own place nearer to his ex so he can help his son more.
His whole family are telling him it’s a mistake, as am I, but he’s so guilt ridden. What do you think?
I don’t feel he should have any guilt – he’s doing everything right and your daughter is also being amazing, allowing him and his son to have time alone when it’s required and being sensitive to his son’s needs.
The thing is, even if he gets his own place he still won’t be seeing his son every day and helping him with his homework every night. He’s not with his son’s mother any more, but he’s being as supportive as he can be given the situation and he’s still a great dad.
And it’s not his fault that his son has learning difficulties, which I’m sure are being addressed and managed at school.
Perhaps his ex does feel a bit jealous and, to be honest, I get it. I also wouldn’t hate her for that.
I think your daughter’s partner needs to work through his guilt because, even if he did live on his own, he’d still feel guilty for not seeing his son all the time. Maybe counselling could help him.
Giving up the happiness he has with your daughter isn’t going to help his son. In fact, it might even set him back if he’s got used to being part of that family unit and enjoys seeing your daughter’s son.
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