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Question
Posted by: ec | 2003/12/11

Partner on holiday with kids & ex

Am I confused or what? Am I being emotionally minipulated?My partner and I have been living together for 18months. I've never met his kids (17,20)and they apparently hate me (or the fact that their dad is with someone else).He doesn't see them often but when he does they fight with him about the (now unneccesary!) divorce, me, and other stuff.They've threatened to change their surname, his d says she won't let him walk her down the aisle when she decides to marry, his son won't let him hug him (says he may pick up a diseace-'cos of me)etc etc. BUT they want him to go on holiday with them over xmas and ofcourse the ex will be with them. My partner feels 'obliged' to go (according to him they are still children and don't 'understand') and needless to say my son and friends thinks it's outrages that he even considers this. I am not happy about it but told him to do what he feels. I feel fed-up actually but don't want to make a scene. A part of me wants to tell him not to bother coming back....

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Our expert says:
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ec, you're right, it is definitely nonsense. At 17 and 20 they're very far from being "children" and can easily understand the situation, in which he is allowing himself to be manipulated. For a divorced man to spend some ti e with his children is understandable, to spend intimate holiday time with the AND HIS EX is not understandable or wise. And though these adult kids are being childish and showing great skill at hating, quite possibly orchestrated by Mama, they can't hate YOU as they've never met you, and thus don't know if you're adorable or loathsome --- they hate "that woman" who has broken up their parents marriage and taken their father.
I agree with those who think this is an outrageous and insulting idea, and for him to even contemplate it is insulting to you. You will and must, of course, make your own decisions, but personally I wouldn't ask him to hurry back --- I'd see this as disloyal, hopelessly naive in responding as if his vicious kids were toddlers, and wholly unloving.

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