ZQ - posted on 05/12/2014 ( no moms have responded yet )
Hello, fellow moms. I need your advice.
It's a long story. I had a child with a man with whom I wasn't seriously involved 5 years ago. When I got pregnant, we weren't even "officially" together. We tried to make a go at having a family together and lived together for nearly 2 terrible, stressful, argument-filled years. I moved out with my child, but continued to carry on a troubled and unsatisfying relationship with my child's father. He sees our child once or twice per week and it is sometimes the 3 of us spending time together. Other than the relationship I have continued with my child's father, my life has been much better since my child and I left the home we all shared together. I am more at peace and my career has been going better. I am a happier person, a better mom, and a better employee at work.
Things were especially bad a couple of months ago, when I made (what I thought) was a firm decision to let this relationship end. I stopped talking to him, other than to convey information about our child. We stopped having a sexual relationship. And then suddenly he proposed to me, which came out of left field and shocked me. Earlier in our relationship I had wanted to get married, partly because I loved him and wanted that level of commitment with him and partly because I felt very ashamed about getting pregnant out of wedlock. He had always resisted and said the timing wasn't right, we didn't get along well. The recent proposal threw me for a loop and I wondered whether I should give the relationship another shot.
I am afraid to let go completely. I am afraid of being alone. I'm in my mid-30s, living in NYC, and feel like no "quality" man will want me. I did a search on Match recently and there were so few guys who specified that it's okay if their partner has kids. I also have a lot of debt from graduate school, so I just feel like nobody will want me. Since the proposal, he's been nicer and kinder to me and to our child and I wonder, "Has he changed? Would things be different now?" I'm terrified of moving back in with him and marrying him and having everything fall apart again. I think a lot of the love I had for him died, but I often wonder if I should just marry him anyways, because now he seems to want to be an involved dad and because he says he "learned" to love me. There is a lot of hurt and mistrust between us and my family doesn't like him. His family doesn't like me.
Because of his job, he has to live in the apartment he's in right now and we can't get a fresh start on neutral ground, so I'd have to go back to the home we shared. Living there would make getting to work and to my child's school a lot harder, but he says he would help with that. He was not a good help when we lived together. I don't want to let go of the apartment I now rent, because my debt to income ratio is such that getting approved to rent an apartment would be next to impossible if things didn't work out between us.
What would you do? Maybe the writing is on the wall...