Relationship advice---with a child.. Help!

Tiffany - posted on 05/02/2014 ( 10 moms have responded )




This is probably going to be the looongest story in the history of circle of moms, but I appreciate you reading, and desperately need to know what others would do in this situation.

In 2010, I started working for a financial company and met Steve at work. Our new hire class would constantly go out for drinks after work, and just do fun things together. Steve was engaged to be married the following May. Steve and I hung out a ton, got to know each other, and ended up making out one evening after (a few) drinks. It was harmless at the time, I knew I had feelings for him, and he did for me. I remember begging him not to get married to his fiance because I just knew him and I could be happier together. I eventually met Alice, Steve's fiance. I freaking loved hanging out with her, we soon befriended each other, and became really close. Alice doesn't know about the make-out. Later that summer, I started dating Evan. I had known Evan for about 2 years at that point, nothing more than just a friendly relationship. Dating each other was brief, I knew he didn't want anything serious, so I called it off with him and took a job offer in FL. I moved away, and figured that was the end of things. Steve and Alice were happily married, and I couldn't have been happier for them!

Fast forward to November 2011, Evan and I run into each other when I had come home to visit family, and we ended up having a long distance relationship, him in Ohio, me in Florida. We would FaceTime every night before bed, we had great communication, but lack of seeing each other often. We scheduled a weekend trip to Savannah, GA where we had the BEST mini vacation ever. We hung out, did a ton of sightseeing, went out at night, and really kicked things off. Fast forward to a month later, and I find out I'm pregnant with my first child. Long story short here, I moved back to Ohio, got an apartment with Evan, and had a baby soonafter. Things were great, for a long time, with the exception of our sex life. I had a c-section with our son, and just simply stated, didn't want to have intercourse anymore at that time because of the pain I was dealing with in that area. Evan would be so upset some evenings because he felt like I had changed or I was cheating on him because of my lack of intimacy in our relationship. I was abused as a child, and I told him about when he pressures me to feel obligated about those things, that it reminds me of things that happened when I was younger. Obviously I don't want to be reminded of that, but for some odd reason, he just kept bringing this up week after week. I then started to build up a ton of resentment for him making me feel this way about myself. (which I'll talk more about later)

Meanwhile, Steve, Alice, Evan and I would double date, we referred to them as "Uncle and Aunt" to Nathan, life was awesome. Alice had come to me and told me she cheated on Steve and was in love with someone else in January, which is when I advised her to try and work things out because I knew how heartbroken Steve was about to be. She unfortunately had moved on with her feelings, and moved out of the house they shared. Evan and I bought a house in March 2013, got engaged in May, and started planning for a wedding. Steve and Evan became very close friends, Steve even had attended our family vacation that summer. At this point I didn't have those feelings for Steve any longer, because I was legitimately ecstatic to be marrying my best friend. Fast forward again to January 2014, and Evan and I started fighting like cats and dogs. We were both so busy, I was converting to become Catholic, he was in school, we now had a mortgage, juggling a babysitter, one year old, full time work for both of us on top of these things was very tough.

This is where things are tough... I went to dinner with Steve one evening when Evan was out of town for a ski trip he had went on. We had a few drinks, and I tried to make-out with Steve again. I don't know what sparked this. I was unhappy with my relationship, fighting all the time, and those feelings that I once had for him were starting to come back, except this time roles were reversed. I was the one with the ring on my finger, planning a May wedding. Steve pushed me away, knowing he was now good friends with Evan, he was going to be in our wedding.. he said he didn't want to be "that guy." I cried that night---- a lot.

Evan returned home, I called off our wedding and said I wasn't happy. The intimacy in our lives were so messed up, I had been basically forcing myself to have intercourse with Evan for the past year (ever since Nathan was 2 months old), and it was never good enough. Steve and I started talking and hanging out more and more, we had the discussion about how our lives would be together, and Evan found out. He had synced my iPhone with his iPod and had access to every single text message I had sent or received. Evan and I talked about it, I felt terrible, I told him how I felt the resentment about our intimacy issues, and couldn't comprehend how he placed our sex life on such a high pedistal. He asked that I stop talking to Steve, which I did, I told him not to call, text, or email me anymore. I deleted him as a friend on FB, and cut off all communication with him. I still work for that financial company, and would randomly run into Steve here and there, but we didn't talk. This went on for about a month or so. I put in 100% into my relationship with Evan. Absolutely positively, tried everything to make things right for the sake of our son and this Catholic conversion I was going through, and because I simply wanted to do the right thing.

Evan, because of me talking to Steve behind his back started basically stalking every move I made. He looked at my texts, emails, accessed my find my iPhone locator service, and constantly questioned me. I knew I deserved it.. I mean, I did go behind his back and talked to our friend. So I dealt with it, complied, and was open with what I was doing. Things were great... for about a week. It eventually became an issue again where we would constantly be up at night talking about our problems, not making any changes, and going to bed frustrated because I didn't want to be intimate. I know men have something inside their bodies that requires the physical intimacy in a relationship, and the way Evan puts it is that it builds the confidence that he needs in our relationship, especially after knowing about Steve and the words we exchanged. I ended up getting so fed up with it that I took Nathan and moved out of the house and in with a relative. Evan and I have been attending therapy sessions, where she is telling us to take time apart based on our situation. He made the decision for us to cut off all communication with each other unless it corresponds to our son, whom he has once or twice a week.

Steve found out about me moving out and everything and is now back in the picture.. not as a bf or someone I'm dating, but more so as someone to hang out with when we are both free. Here is my issue, (or I should say one of my many issues)

I have the choice to work things out with Evan if I can agree to be more intimate in our relationship. The advantages of that: he's the father of my child, he's helpful, concerned about how I feel, is a great dad, Nathan wouldn't have to have split custody between the two of us, I now have such bad anxiety when Nathan stays at daddy's, and it would be nice to get back to the happiness we shared together. The disadvantages of that: I don't want Nathan to think mommy and daddy are consistently not happy in life if we continue to fight, I still have those feelings of resentment toward him because of things he failed to respect about the sex thing before. I don't want the intimacy to be forced, and I can't help but think about Steve and what "could be" if we were to try things out.

I have the choice of dating Steve, obviously not right away because I'm nowhere near the point in my life where I want to be in another relationship, but advantages to that: my parents really like him, we would be more financially stable than Evan and I, I would stop asking myself what if. Disadvantages of that: If Evan knew we were talking again, it would break his heart, I again don't want Nathan to grow up in separate households, I would still ask myself, what could have happened if I had worked things out with Evan.

I just am at a loss. I'm struggling because of our child together, and although he's only 18 months, I know one day things will come up and questions will have to be answered. I know it's not right to stay in an unhappy relationship just for the mercy of the child, but at the same time, if Evan and I could stop fighting about these stupid issues we have, I truly feel like we could be happy one day. This is very convoluted and a lengthy question, but any advice would be appreciated.


[momoftwo] - posted on 05/05/2014




All I can say is do what would make you and baby happy. If mom isn't happy baby won't be so happy either.
Even if things dont go so well with Evan and you two split you don't HAVE to be Steve. It would be okay to be alone and work on yourself and past problems before getting back out in the dating world. It's time to start thinking about yourself and your well being especially if Evans trying to bring you down at times.
I wish you the best. *hugs*

Gena - posted on 05/03/2014




Ok,i read the whole story.I dont really know what advice i can give you..but i see you already made a pro/con list about eatch guy..i believe you shouldnt think about witch guy has more money.I think you should listen to your heart..and decide what would be best for your son.That doesnt mean that you have to be together with his daddy..because like you said,it wouldnt be fair for your son if you and his father would be fighting all the time. What i read is that the intimicy is the biggest issue in your relationship with Ethan..I think therapy and especialy therapy about the intimicy would be a good idea. I have no clue if i helped you with my answer,but i wish you good luck and that you follow your heart and that everything will be ok.

Linda - posted on 05/04/2014




You mentioned you and Evan are going through therapy sessions, but are you getting counseling about your abusive past? Because if the abuse does not get dealt with, it will affect your intimacy with ANY man, not just Evan.

It would also help Evan to sit in on some of those sessions too because it does not sound like he understands what you went through. He is putting himself over you and making you feel condemned. Also, a woman's sex drive is linked to their emotional intimacy. If a man is making his woman feel secure and loved, then she is more likely to desire physical intimacy. Whereas, men are more likely able to turn it on even after a fight. If he is making you feel uncomfortable, then it is perfectly normal that you don't want to get physically intimate with him!!

And since you are Catholic, I am going to include this:

"Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless. In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself." - Ephesians 5: 25-28

I am just including that to remind you how you deserve to be treated by your husband. I get the feeling that you allow yourself to feel condemned when it is not all your fault. Evan sounds like he has issues himself. His confidence should NOT solely depend on YOU, that is too much of a burden for one human to bear. Yes, sex can make a man feel more confident (note: an increase of a confidence that's already there), but that does NOT mean a man does not have confidence when he does not have sex. There is a difference! Also, his stalking you is another big red flag on his insecurity issues. If this is not addressed, he will just keep blaming you and blackmailing you based off his own insecurities. That's why you guys get into a cycle of the same problems because the root of the issue is not addressed.

Kaila - posted on 05/04/2014




My personal opinion is that if Evan had enough respect for you than he would have understood how you felt when you first expressed your feelings about the intimacy issue. If you had feelings for Steve for years they're just not reappearing for no reason. If you were to try and work things out with Evan (again) nothing may change and you may lose your chance with Steve for good. I'm sure Nathan will understand once he's older but right now as long as you and Evan have a good parent relationship I would do what your heart tells you. I hope this helped :)

Michelle - posted on 05/03/2014




In my opinion, there shouldn't be ANY conditions on getting back with Evan. If he doesn't love you for who your are (lack of sex drive and all) then you shouldn't be together. He can't say that you will be happy forever if you just had more sex. A relationship won't last on sex alone. You'll find the best relationships are based on a mutual respect of each other, not sex.
You child also deserves to be brought up in a happy home. That may well be 2 separate homes. I left my ex when my 2nd son was 1. He can't remember us being together but he is one of the most loving and happy children I know. I always get comments from teachers and other parents on how well behaved and polite my boys are. They don't find the "naughty" kids at school, they go out of their way to avoid them. They are now 13 and 10!
My Grandmother told me to never stay in a marriage/relationship for the sake of the children. In the end you do more damage. She lived it 80 odd years ago and always wished her parents had split up but it just wasn't done back then.

ETA: One of the problems in my first marriage was the lack of intimacy as far as he was concerned. With my current husband I love him a hell of a lot more and we do it more often than I did with my ex. It also didn't help that I found out my ex had cheated on me when I was pregnant (that's why I wasn't having sex with him).


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Tiffany - posted on 05/05/2014




I appreciate all the comments. I am still living with a relative, Evan gets to see our son on a pretty normal basis. I have agreed to go to individual and joint counseling with him. The thing that scares me, that a few people have said before... I have never had these intimacy issues in my past relationships, because it's never been a concern or I've never felt bad about how much (or how infrequently) I was being intimate with someone. So I guess what I'm saying is that I do agree, I need to go to counseling for these issues, but I don't agree that the intimacy issue will be present in any relationship that I get into. That's what sets Evan aside from everyone else I've dated or been intimate with, is that he had the nerve to make me feel crappy about it, so now I resent him for that. I know things happen for a reason, and at this point I may not know what that reason is, but for the time being I'm doing what I think is best for my son and I.

Thank you ladies for the feedback. :)

~♥Little Miss - posted on 05/05/2014




This is all a bit ridiculous. The grass isn't always greener on the other side of the fence, but when it is yours sometimes you want your old yard back. Get it?

I completely agree about the therapy sessions for your past. I also agree that it won't matter who you are with, your past will always cause intimacy issues if you do not address them.

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