my ignorant fiance re. attachment parenting... - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 26 Old 05-22-2007, 07:24 PM - Thread Starter
 
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i'll keep this brief for now but for the past 15 mos. i've been w/ a man in MN that i met on eHarmony. i swore i would never get into another relationship until my dd was much older...i just didn't really want a real f2f relationship. i'd been single and alone w/ just my dd (now 4.5 yo) for 2.5 years. loved it. but something in me (the love addict, maybe???!!!!) kept me looking at the personals sites and kept me curious...

when i met tom i was living in madison wis. liking it...very hip, was discovering all sorts of holistic and attachment parenting groups going on. when we met, i think i ignored a few flags that annoyed or concerned me about him. i liked that he'd been sober for 8 years then...now its 9.5 yrs. he isn't perfect, as i am not either, but sometimes i really feel he acts like a dry drunk... (btw, he may be walking in at any second so i may have to log out quickly...therefore i'll resume later on if that happens) he seems to get so annoyed w/ my dd when he is stressed out from money (which is his own fault...) issues. he knew i am a attachment parenting mama who adores her dd. i put this in my eHarmony profile. in fact, i have a copy of it printed out i just got from them to show him. i think he overlooked it. he wanted someone to be a partner with in real estate investing, which is his latest pursuit (sigh...). well....*i* want a partner who is invested in attachment parenting. i don't feel his heart is in it. either that or he needs an anger management course or something to re-route his stress. i don't like how conditional his love for my dd seems at times...i hate how reactive he is when she tests his love or does something that he feels annoyed by.

so many of my friends online say leave him...move on. but i'm trying to give this a chance. i'm now 14 weeks pregnant. i also worry about him treating this child w/ more patience and love than my dd. (btw, her bio father is NOT in the picture...not since she was 9 mos. old) my dd calls tom daddy...her doing months into knowing him. this is so hard. i know that reality is that tom is not her bio father. that's a given. but can't he love her like his own...w/out being stern and annoyed w/ her presence when she is not acting like the obedient little

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#2 of 26 Old 05-22-2007, 11:13 PM
 
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That's really hard, mama. Was he ever in agreement with attachment parenting? Was he ever loving to your dd and able to meet her emotional needs? If not, then my advice would be for you to discipline your dd and for you to meet her emotional needs. Do not rely on your partner until he is ready, which may be never. Tell him he is no longer responsible for setting limits and/or cuddling/hugging/holding her. You will meet her needs. The dynamics may change when he meets his own child but chances are, it will take some outside help for all of you.

It can/will get hairy. I've been there The only thing that helped us was therapy!

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#3 of 26 Old 05-23-2007, 12:58 PM
 
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It takes time to love a child that is not your own, and you may never love them in quite the same way. DF's daughter is about the same age as your daughter, and we have found it to be a challenging age (you may not be experiencing the same thing). We generally have some sort of tantrum in the morning when she has to get up, in the morning when she has to have her hair brushed, during dinner, when it is time to get ready for bed, and sometimes another one or two thrown in for good measure.

Since I am not her bio parent, I don't have nearly the patience with all of this that DF does. I stay out of the discipline thing, but the constant meltdowns make our living situation unpleasant. I am glad that she will (hopefully) grow out of this before her little brother is old enough to imitate it. All of the tantrums make her seem like a generally crabby child to me, so sometimes I have to work at loving her. I try to remember her situation (age, living at two houses), but sometimes it's like "Come on, Kid. Not everything has to be a major THING."

To make a long story short, just remember that your DP isn't hardwired like you are to be devoted to your child no matter what. Biology ensures that even when your own child is acting like a demon, you still love them. Someone else's child has to grow on you. Give it time. Fifteen months isn't all that long for child and future stepparent to get to know each other. These relationships often move at a snail's pace.

Also, I second Kindermama's plug for therapy. It was the best thing we ever did for our relationship.

PS- I'm in MN, too!

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#4 of 26 Old 05-23-2007, 05:52 PM - Thread Starter
 
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how do i really express this to him? what am i to say exactly? what is he to do then, in relating to her? what if she wants to stay with daddy and be with him at times like she has? so if she won't 'listen' to him, i should jump in like i have been??? i don't know if he ever was in agreement re. AP...just sort of said uh huh ok and then did his own way of reactiing to her when it got tough for him. what if my dd is just with him and she is doing something that is irking him or won't mind him so to speak? do i just say no, you can't go w/ daddy (if i'm not there too)??? this is tough! to me, my dd is the most beautiful amazing yet sometimes annoying little angel on the earth!!! i made a phone appt. w/ naomi aldort too...she is always very affirming to how i'm already handling things...whew. very reassuring woman, she is. she said last time...you haven't read my book? i said no naomi, i haven't, its all natural instinct for me...incl how i protect megh w/ tom. but maybe he deserves some protection too...i know megh sure does cuz i'm always afraid he'll explode on her. i don't think its his place....certainly not this soon.
thanks!

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That's really hard, mama. Was he ever in agreement with attachment parenting? Was he ever loving to your dd and able to meet her emotional needs? If not, then my advice would be for you to discipline your dd and for you to meet her emotional needs. Do not rely on your partner until he is ready, which may be never. Tell him he is no longer responsible for setting limits and/or cuddling/hugging/holding her. You will meet her needs. The dynamics may change when he meets his own child but chances are, it will take some outside help for all of you.

It can/will get hairy. I've been there The only thing that helped us was therapy!

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#5 of 26 Old 05-23-2007, 10:12 PM
 
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Why is your partner left with your dd? Do you work outside the home? How long a time period is she left in his care?

We came up with general house rules since we are a blended family. Everyone pitches in to keep our home neat (ie: clean up after you play & eat), no hurting others with our bodies or our words, manners, getting dressed in the morning before you go downstairs, make your bed) When the step-parent is caring for a stepchild (in our home) alone, the stepparent asks once for the rule to be follow
(except in the case of a child hurting another child- we have permitted each other to take the necessary steps to separate the child to cool down)

For example: DSS left toys all over the kitchen floor this morning (house rule: clean up your toys & put them where they belong) so I picked up his toys, put them in his open hands and asked him gently to put them in his room in his toy basket. Two hours later, I was upstairs walking past his room and I look in and the said toys are thrown all over the floor. I was so irked! Again, not hardwired to have patience with my DSS. So, I let my DH know when he came home. I did not say a word to my DSS. His dad took care of setting the limits and said "Next time, please listen to your Mommy (yes he calls me Mommy-has been with us fulltime since he was 18mos- his mom abandoned him). It's important to take care of your toys and help us keep the house neat".

Since I am a step-parent in this case, I totally empathize with your partner's inability to keep cool when my stepchild is testing boundaries or just plain absent-minded. It definitely gets more on my nerves than when my biological dd does the same thing. My DH admits he feels the same way towards my DD. It takes ALOT OF TIME for the bond to build to the point that this eases up a bit.

It's a work in progress. We got off to a rough start in our blended family. Why? Because we both expected each other to love our children like our own. It hasn't happened yet and it's been 3.5 years. It hasn't happened yet because we lived with that assumption and we're constantly let down for 3 of the 3.5 years (until therapy). It's been really hard. Lower the expectations but also set clear boundaries with your partner that you will parent until he feels & you trust that he is ready.

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#6 of 26 Old 05-24-2007, 12:01 PM
 
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It sounds like you guys haven't quite defined parenting roles. Do you want him to participate in discipline (gentle or otherwise) of your child, or would you rather him stay out of it? If DF is home, I generally stay out of it and she pretty much listens to me when he isn't here, so not much of an issue at the moment. In our situation, I am working on being a more active participant in (step)parenting STBSD, but since right now he spends most of his time doing discipline-like things, I feel limited.

I also tend to bite my tongue when she is doing things that annoy me, for two reasons: a) She's a kid and they do annoying things. My kids will probably do annoying things someday and I will probably try to overlook it, so I try to extend her the same courtesy. b) she's a sensitive kid who will often melt down if you ask her to stop doing something. I'd rather not get that started, kwim?

If you want him to be involved like a bio parent would be *and* he is comfortable with that, then if she doesn't listen to him, I would say your job is to support him. Say something to the effect of "DD, you need to listen to DP" or "DD, what did DP ask you to do?" Then stay out of it. Turn the situation back to him, leave the room even.

I think that the two of you really need to sit down and have a discussion about how you want your household to work. About parenting philosophies. About blending families.

Something DF has told me about the time when he was with STBSD's mom is that he felt like he was joining her family, not making one with her. Your DP might feel that way, too.

Sorry this is so long.

My dad, stepmom and brothers are in North Branch. Are you in that area?

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#7 of 26 Old 05-24-2007, 12:52 PM
 
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i protect megh w/ tom. but maybe he deserves some protection too...i know megh sure does cuz i'm always afraid he'll explode on her. i don't think its his place....certainly not this soon.
I am feeling really nervous that you are marrying someone whom you feel the need to protect your child from. And it's really never anyone's place to explode on any child.. soon or not.

He's a grown man, he doesn't need protection. And straight up, no one should need protection from anyone else in their household. Honestly, as hard as it is, I'd be seriously rethinking this relationship. From what little info I have, I don't see this situation improving, I see it getting worse. Do you want to spend your parenting years running interference between your DP and your children?

I'm sorry if any of this sounds harsh, because I am truly coming from a place of concern. I see red flags all over the place.

I wish you peace and clarity.
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#8 of 26 Old 05-24-2007, 02:32 PM
 
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I am feeling really nervous that you are marrying someone whom you feel the need to protect your child from. And it's really never anyone's place to explode on any child.. soon or not.
Wow, I totally jumped over that part....I did not read this part until a minute ago. That IS a huge red flag. I was talking about getting "frustrated" with a stepchild which is definitely not in the same department as "exploding". That is abuse and you should be rethinking this relationship because you will not only have to protect Megh from him, but your biological child together too (I hope). 15 months is not a long time. Yes, you are pregnant with his baby, BUT, are you willing to put Megh and your new baby at risk for abuse??? My advice is lots & lots of therapy (individually & together). Since you are on mothering & we are generally a gentle parenting community, I assume you will not stand by & allow your children to be abused by your partner. I do not see the situation improving without plenty of therapy. I'm sorry to come across this way but I'm worried like Shonahsmom

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#9 of 26 Old 05-24-2007, 05:46 PM - Thread Starter
 
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nooooo i don't work outside the home. dd sometimes wants to ride home w/ tom from our new house location where he works on it or she wants to stay with him there for an hour or so helping him work on it. or if i am completely wiped out and need a serious nap in my bed. she is not alone w/ him much.

that sucks to hear that it isn't natural or hard wired and i'm not sure i believe in that...he knew i had a child when we met. is it somehow different when a non-bio couple adopt a child...are they hard wired cuz they wanted the child so badly??? i'm not sure i agree w/ this although i must say i feel sometimes like my karma is coming around to bite me in the ass as i had a very strong love/dislike relationship w/ my ex's dd who was then 3.5yo when i left him. i would get so irritated w/ her...i even posted it many a times online various places...what to do w/ those feelings, how to get relief...she was in my care most of the time so that wasn't fair on my part especially w/ our newborn baby (my dd megh). so i'm in a catch 22. like i said i can't imagine megh not being adored like i adore her...she is my everything...she is my joy.

i talked w/ my counselor naomi today and she agrees w/ what someone on here suggested...that i tell tom i'm the disciplinarian, the one setting the limits, enforcing, etc. that tom is out of that loop now. i told tom and have been applying this. naomi said it will be great for a while, and if megh was the only child forever it'd be great to keep in play the whole time but since tom and i have a baby coming together, we will eventually need to merge into some sort of like-way of parenting these 2 precious ones. i will start by trying to get tom educated more on gentle and child led parenting. attachment parenting...all that good stuff. for the most part he's great but i think i let him step in too much w/ megh as far as what he can say and do about things re. her behavior and needs.

i like how your family does things...your DSS doesn't have his mother in the picture...like my megh, but you still let your DH handle the big stuff. do u think it will always be that way?

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Why is your partner left with your dd? Do you work outside the home? How long a time period is she left in his care?

We came up with general house rules since we are a blended family. Everyone pitches in to keep our home neat (ie: clean up after you play & eat), no hurting others with our bodies or our words, manners, getting dressed in the morning before you go downstairs, make your bed) When the step-parent is caring for a stepchild (in our home) alone, the stepparent asks once for the rule to be follow
(except in the case of a child hurting another child- we have permitted each other to take the necessary steps to separate the child to cool down)

For example: DSS left toys all over the kitchen floor this morning (house rule: clean up your toys & put them where they belong) so I picked up his toys, put them in his open hands and asked him gently to put them in his room in his toy basket. Two hours later, I was upstairs walking past his room and I look in and the said toys are thrown all over the floor. I was so irked! Again, not hardwired to have patience with my DSS. So, I let my DH know when he came home. I did not say a word to my DSS. His dad took care of setting the limits and said "Next time, please listen to your Mommy (yes he calls me Mommy-has been with us fulltime since he was 18mos- his mom abandoned him). It's important to take care of your toys and help us keep the house neat".

Since I am a step-parent in this case, I totally empathize with your partner's inability to keep cool when my stepchild is testing boundaries or just plain absent-minded. It definitely gets more on my nerves than when my biological dd does the same thing. My DH admits he feels the same way towards my DD. It takes ALOT OF TIME for the bond to build to the point that this eases up a bit.

It's a work in progress. We got off to a rough start in our blended family. Why? Because we both expected each other to love our children like our own. It hasn't happened yet and it's been 3.5 years. It hasn't happened yet because we lived with that assumption and we're constantly let down for 3 of the 3.5 years (until therapy). It's been really hard. Lower the expectations but also set clear boundaries with your partner that you will parent until he feels & you trust that he is ready.

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#10 of 26 Old 05-24-2007, 05:48 PM - Thread Starter
 
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oh believe me, i'm not marrying him quite yet. the original date was 9/07 then i changed it to 6/07. now i'm not sure what it will be...it would definitely be after the baby is here at least 6 mos. and after i see a lot of progress on his part.

i agree, my kids should not need protection like this. and he doesn't need protection, he's a grown man, he can learn alternative ways of responding to her needs. that is what it is all about...needs. i agree w/ you wholeheartedly. if things don't improve in the next month i'm so far outta here.

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I am feeling really nervous that you are marrying someone whom you feel the need to protect your child from. And it's really never anyone's place to explode on any child.. soon or not.

He's a grown man, he doesn't need protection. And straight up, no one should need protection from anyone else in their household. Honestly, as hard as it is, I'd be seriously rethinking this relationship. From what little info I have, I don't see this situation improving, I see it getting worse. Do you want to spend your parenting years running interference between your DP and your children?

I'm sorry if any of this sounds harsh, because I am truly coming from a place of concern. I see red flags all over the place.

I wish you peace and clarity.

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#11 of 26 Old 05-24-2007, 05:52 PM - Thread Starter
 
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done deal...as far as the meeting her emotinoal needs like hugging/cuddling/holding i left that part out. i didn't understand that. she loves to hug him and cuddle w/ him. why cut them off from that? she was hitting his stomach last night and instead of scolding her and i could see tom was holding his tongue looking at me like HELP! cuz i'd told him right before what you said in my own words...so he is respecting it so far...i whispered in meghs' ear 'daddy doesn't like to be tickled...' and she immediately tickled his tummy. telling her first that 'daddy likes hugs and kisses better than being hit' didn't fly with her. but the 'don't do that' worked. ha ha. she is one funny girl.

i agree he and i need to have a talk about parenting...

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Originally Posted by Kindermama View Post
That's really hard, mama. Was he ever in agreement with attachment parenting? Was he ever loving to your dd and able to meet her emotional needs? If not, then my advice would be for you to discipline your dd and for you to meet her emotional needs. Do not rely on your partner until he is ready, which may be never. Tell him he is no longer responsible for setting limits and/or cuddling/hugging/holding her. You will meet her needs. The dynamics may change when he meets his own child but chances are, it will take some outside help for all of you.

It can/will get hairy. I've been there The only thing that helped us was therapy!

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#12 of 26 Old 05-24-2007, 06:05 PM
 
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that sucks to hear that it isn't natural or hard wired and i'm not sure i believe in that...he knew i had a child when we met. is it somehow different when a non-bio couple adopt a child...are they hard wired cuz they wanted the child so badly???

I've thought of it that way and the difference is TWO parents typically decide to adopt a child together (much like deciding to have a biological child together). When it comes to blended families, there are obvious loyalties. A biological mother will not allow her partner/husband to abuse her children. Nature (in most cases) should prevent this (aka "mother bear")

As far as letting your DD cuddle with your partner, the only drawback is if you & DP split, then she will lose someone close to her.

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#13 of 26 Old 05-25-2007, 09:48 PM
 
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i like how your family does things...your DSS doesn't have his mother in the picture...like my megh, but you still let your DH handle the big stuff. do u think it will always be that way?
I forgot to answer this question...don't ask how it managed to pop up in my mind today:

Anyway, no I hope it will not be this way for much longer. It was part of the process recommended by a child therapist to help us sort out our "couple issues" (which have improved IMMENSELY with marriage counseling) and then eventually there will be emotional space,so to speak, to develop a true bond with our stepchild that is not dependent upon the status of our marriage (it sure was rocky there for a bit).

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#14 of 26 Old 05-31-2007, 12:34 PM
 
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Oh boy, this is a tough one. I do know in a way where you are coming from .. let me tell you my story and maybe in some way it can help you.

I divorced when my DS was only 14 months old. Just before his 2nd birthday I met this incredible man and while I was not looking to date, we totally clicked and it happened naturally. I made it clear from the start that being an AP mama was very important to me, and that my son came first. He was a single guy with no kids, and had a whole lot to learn.

My son is a very spirited guy, and as a toddler also had speech and sensory issues that made him have serious melt downs and he could be very hard to deal with. I got to really test my BF and I wont lie, we had many long discussions where he honestly told me he wasn't sure he could parent like I do. In the very beginning he even said he thought spanking was ok, and a good thing to do!!!!

It took a lot of educating, but I felt he was worth it. He read things, watched Unconditional Parenting with me, and we talked and talked. In the end, he learned so much (when you know better, you do better!!!) and it's funny because now he tells everyone that he's a better person for what he knows. About a year ago we were with friends who have a 3 year old, and they were threatening to spank her. My BF took me aside and told me how hard it was to hear them talk like that to her. He's amazing with my son who is now 4.5 years old, and considers BF "Daddy". I've always been very honest that he's not his bio-Dad, and never asked my son to call him anything but his first name ... but in the last year, he's started calling him Dad.

I guess in the end, I knew it was worth educating my BF because he is such a good guy. He loves us sooo much, is so patient, kind and honest. I knew that he would be a wonderful father, he just need to know that there are different ways to raise a child than what he grew up with. And now, I can't tell you what a wonderful father and partner he is.

Sorry this got long. My point is that just because someone is not automatically AP, does not mean they'll never be. You know in your heart if he's a good father, and if a little education is just what he needs. If my BF hadn't listened and taken to AP, we would never have made it this far. It's far too important to me how my son is treated, kwim?

I wish you the very best, and if I can help in any way, PM me.

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#15 of 26 Old 06-03-2007, 09:17 PM
 
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There is a book called 123 Magic that might help. It's about discipline, and doesn't get into diapering, feeding, etc issues. Still, it might be something you could both agree on, as you begin to build common ground. The baby book I give to most of my friends and family is The Baby Book by Dr. Sears. I don't agree with everything he says, but it's a good place to start for someone who doesn't understand how important gentle parenting is. We've got three boys, 10, 8 & 6 from my previous marriage, and are expecting one of our own. These things are helping us find our way together.

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#16 of 26 Old 06-03-2007, 10:44 PM
 
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There is a book called 123 Magic that might help.
Kiley
Our children's therapist says this book "works" but there is not really any mention of emotional needs being met. She recommends 123 Magic & Connection Parenting by Pam Leo together!

http://www.connectionparenting.com

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#17 of 26 Old 06-05-2007, 09:02 PM
 
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Our children's therapist says this book "works" but there is not really any mention of emotional needs being met. She recommends 123 Magic & Connection Parenting by Pam Leo together!

http://www.connectionparenting.com
I'll have to check that one out. I've been reading Tony Attwood books about Asperger's Syndrome. I just read another great book called "Stop Walking On Eggshells" about Borderline Personality Disorder (what my ex has). I'm working up a pretty good Psych Library!

I may start teaching the 123 Magic course in the next few months, well that was the plan before I got pregnant. It's offered on our local Military Base to military parents and the community. It's used in our public schools pretty widely too. You always know your kids are getting it at school when they start talking about getting their clips moved (how they count in the classroom). I think it's a great option for such a diverse group. Now that I'm pregnant again, change my mind about that.

I do see your point. It really does not go into emotional needs. It handles discipline well, but isn't comprehensive about all children need.

Kiley
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#18 of 26 Old 06-09-2007, 04:39 PM
 
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It took a lot of educating, but I felt he was worth it. He read things, watched Unconditional Parenting with me, and we talked and talked.......

I guess in the end, I knew it was worth educating my BF because he is such a good guy. He loves us sooo much, is so patient, kind and honest. I knew that he would be a wonderful father, he just need to know that there are different ways to raise a child than what he grew up with. And now, I can't tell you what a wonderful father and partner he is.
My experience was much like Mistymama's. When I met DF, I thought we were very much on the same page with AP - he was anti-spanking and his sister is a very-AP sahm, etc. We talked about things a LOT before we even went on our second date.
After we moved in together, though, there was an adjustment period & I thought about throwing in the towel a few times. The one thing that kept us going was talking and talking and talking. It's the foundation of our relationship. I saw great potential in him - he had a spiritual center, was compassionate. He's the kind of guy who, even at 32, will bring home wounded animals and try to nurse them back to health When it came to the boys, though, he still clung to some ideas that were less than ap\gd. It took time and a lot of respectful discussion and a little compromise on both our parts, but we have a great partnership now and he really loves the boys. I'm so happy with the life we've made.

I don't think you can "make it work" with just anyone, though. I honestly think that some people just don't "get it", as far as AP goes. For me, at the heart of my parenting, there is a general respect for people.... for the spirit within them. I parent my children as if I'm the care-taker of their spirits and "AP" just comes out of that. I stuck it out with DF because I could see the potential for that kind of relationship between him and my kids. If I hadn't seen the potential, I would have left. Simple as that.
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#19 of 26 Old 06-10-2007, 11:08 PM
 
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I don't know who originally posted the part about nature and the biological parent but I don't think this has to be true. I have been in my DSS life since he was 3 months old and consider him my child, he is 3.5 I also have a bio DS who is 8 Months. My relationship with them is different because of DSS splitting households but I am one of his parents and when he is at our house Me and DH both have equal say in parenting decisions and I knew that he had a kid and what I was getting into. Also with extended family we tell them that if they want a relationship with DS, they need to have similar relationship with DSS and this is a slow process but when my parents are asked how many grandchildren they have they say two.

I am having a similar kind of issue with my father with how he sometimes tries to discipline DSS. When DSS hits or hurts someone esp. his brother who is smaller my father 2x's threatened that he "should smack him and how would he like that" both times I yelled at my father and today it came to a head where I told him that if he threatens violence to my children he will no longer have access to either of them because DS will one day be a three year old and three year olds have bad impulse control. I gave my father some examples of appropriate/acceptable discipline and he agreed to work on it. I think that telling your DP that he can't discipline DD will create a weird relationship where he can't appropriately protect his space and have his own relationship with DD.(ie your husband looking to you to save him from your daughter) I think that if he is willing to work on this I would tell him strict boudnaries for how he interacts with your children. NO Threats, violence ect.. and give him some guidelines for things he can try and an approrpiate way he can set boundries with your daughter.



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I've thought of it that way and the difference is TWO parents typically decide to adopt a child together (much like deciding to have a biological child together). When it comes to blended families, there are obvious loyalties.

A biological mother will not allow her partner/husband to abuse her children. Nature (in most cases) should prevent this (aka "mother bear")

I will not allow my husband to abuse my children biological or step.

As far as letting your DD cuddle with your partner, the only drawback is if you & DP split, then she will lose someone close to her.
She has a sibling with your partner as a father. DH and I have an agreement that if we split I still get time with DSS. I think you need to get commitment from your DP to your daughter and have and understanding that this is not just a if you guys work out. Some of the bonding issues may be because his relationship with DD is tied to the potentially tenuos relationship with you. I think you need to decide if you are committed to this relationship and if it will work and I think that if so you and your partner should agree that both children are his children and he needs an authentic relatioship with DD otherwise if you are not together he can just be you daughter's sibling's father.

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#20 of 26 Old 06-13-2007, 03:00 PM
 
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I guess my experiences may be clouding me, but I say run. Go back to Wisconsin where you were building an AP life happily and do it BEFORE the baby is born. Tom can follow you if you allow him and you can begin to start over. But this way it is on your turf, you'll have support, and if he doesn't follow, well....

Hopefully I don't get flamed for this! But Tom makes me really nervous and when that baby is born, you're stuck where you are for good. A judge won't let you out of the state at that point if you're sharing custody of the baby. So I say, go now while you have control.

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#21 of 26 Old 06-13-2007, 07:23 PM
 
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I guess my experiences may be clouding me, but I say run. Go back to Wisconsin where you were building an AP life happily and do it BEFORE the baby is born. Tom can follow you if you allow him and you can begin to start over. But this way it is on your turf, you'll have support, and if he doesn't follow, well....

Hopefully I don't get flamed for this! But Tom makes me really nervous and when that baby is born, you're stuck where you are for good. A judge won't let you out of the state at that point if you're sharing custody of the baby. So I say, go now while you have control.
No flames here - that's what I would do....... and have done. Gina's right, if you see this ending badly, then move now before the baby is born.
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#22 of 26 Old 06-15-2007, 06:02 PM - Thread Starter
 
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My dad, stepmom and brothers are in North Branch. Are you in that area?

yes i am VERY close to there...well at least w/in say 20-25 mins. maybe not THAT close.

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#23 of 26 Old 06-15-2007, 06:08 PM - Thread Starter
 
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He read things, watched Unconditional Parenting with me, and we talked and talked. .
what is unconditional parenting? maybe i can get that from the library??? i just resent that i have to get him to sit down and watch something or listen to me read something for him to learn. i'd think he'd WANT to learn but he comes from a line of people who just 'go w/ the flow'.........he is a lot more evolved than his parents or siblings though..i gotta hand him that.

i still would much rather prefer being a single mama...but i'm trying to feel this out.

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#24 of 26 Old 06-15-2007, 11:26 PM
 
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what is unconditional parenting? maybe i can get that from the library??? i just resent that i have to get him to sit down and watch something or listen to me read something for him to learn. i'd think he'd WANT to learn but he comes from a line of people who just 'go w/ the flow'.........he is a lot more evolved than his parents or siblings though..i gotta hand him that.

i still would much rather prefer being a single mama...but i'm trying to feel this out.
Don't feel resentful of him....feel resentful towards the society that he was raised in. His parents probably felt at the time they were doing everything right. The times have changed. It will take time, lots of reading and exploring....give him room to grow as long as he is willing to grow in the parenting area

Consciously mothering 3 girls and 2 boys
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#25 of 26 Old 06-16-2007, 12:56 AM
 
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what is unconditional parenting? maybe i can get that from the library??? i just resent that i have to get him to sit down and watch something or listen to me read something for him to learn. i'd think he'd WANT to learn but he comes from a line of people who just 'go w/ the flow'.........he is a lot more evolved than his parents or siblings though..i gotta hand him that.

i still would much rather prefer being a single mama...but i'm trying to feel this out.
What kind of guy do you think he is? If you left him would he fight for visitation/custody? if he would I would say that either way you see the relationship going getting on the same page about parenting philosophies will help in the long run because what I know from my situation is that it is hard to parent with someone who feels philosophically different from you and particularly hard to parent with someone who you are philosophcally different from, don't get along, and live in different houses. Even if you are a single mama if he fights for visitation you still have to parent with him so better you are on the same page, espcially if you plan to do extended breastfeeding because at one year he could get overnights and if you live in different states he could get overnights earlier than that in some states.

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#26 of 26 Old 06-16-2007, 03:23 AM
 
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what is unconditional parenting?
It's a "lecture" dvd by Alfie Kohan (sp?). You might find it at the library; I ordered mine online for about $15 through a co-op here. It's pretty good. If you can find a copy somewhere, it's worth a watch, imo. Even if you don't buy into the entire theory, it's a *great* conversation starter.
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