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<p>I posted in the step-parenting forum here about some problems I having getting my kids and fiance to cooperate getting the house ready for my third child, due in June. I have been put on bed rest due to dangerously high and very resistant high blood pressure.  I cannot at present do chores, work, or take the phlebotomy class I so badly wanted to in the spring.  (I am seeing a specialist soon.)  Another forum member suggested it's time to lay down the law with my kids.  I realized they are half the problem.  I feel powerless because of my medical situation.  I really need my fiance's support, and so I had a serious talk with him, too.  Several in fact.</p>
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<p>The problem I am coming to you with is that those talks have not changed anything.  This is an ongoing problem and is exacerbating the problems with the kids.  They know my mobility is limited, and they are losing respect for him.  Our apartment is in a hideously messy state.  There is no way it is even close to ready for the baby who may be here early if my blood pressure continues to climb. </p>
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<p>He does a sink or two of dishes every couple of days, and maybe once a week if I'm lucky he will take a big bag of laundry to the laundromat.  I have been having to scrub out the remaining laundry with a scrub board in a couple of washtubs, which I don't mind so much - I just can't do it anymore, and laundry piles up quickly.  I honestly don't think he realizes how quickly, and how much daily maintenance is required to keep a home safe, let alone clean.  He has made a lot of promises to change, which I have stopped believing.  He claims he hurts too much or is too tired, but I have chronic Lyme disease and function better than he does.  He has acknowledged he needs a therapist, but has made no steps to find one.  He has had no health care in years, until very recently, and is suffering with arthritis, high blood pressure, obesity, and a possible sleep disorder.  While I may empathize with that, I cannot pick up his slack when I'm under doctor's orders to stay in bed.</p>
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<p>My two children from a previous marriage are 14 and 9.  They are losing respect for him, and beginning to resent him.  They used to love him, and I think they still do, he was a close family friend for years before we took things beyond friendship.  But the respect is disappearing, fast, because they notice how little he does around the house.  Yes, he works almost full time at Wendy's.  That doesn't bring in the money to support the four of us, let alone a family of five.  He has talked about finding better work but hasn't done anything beyond one interview at Pizza Hut.  I worked before I was advised by my doctor to stop, and still managed to cook, hand-wash laundry, and do dishes.  Why is just a sink full of dishes and a trip to the grocery store a full day for him?  The kids refuse to do chores until he gets his act together.  The chores remain undone, and all I can do is sit in bed, nag, and worry.  I have had one serious conversation with both kids about how this needs to stop, but truthfully, the kids can't do this on their own, either, nor should they.</p>
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<p>Maybe I'm hormonal, but the anxiety about this situation is starting to tear me up.  Sometimes I get angry.  I have given him ultimatums.  I'm afraid I sound like a nagging bitch.  I loose sleep over this.  My blood pressure gets higher in spite of attempts at treatment.  The baby won't wait.  My other two were early due to dangerously high blood pressure, this one may be too.  I have told him if things haven't improved in a few months, I will not bring the baby home here, and will instead get an apartment in Buffalo for me and the kids.  He has become whiny, clingy, and needy, whimpering that he loves me.  I love him too, but that alone is not going to make this marriage possible.  I have asked him to show me his love with actions, not words.  Very little has changed.  I do not believe that the house will be ready in time, nor that other promises will be kept.  He cries that he is afraid of failing in our relationship, but does little to try to succeed, except simper and cling.</p>
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<p>I was seeing a therapist before my pressure spiked and I was put on bed rest.  I may be able to arrange a phone consult, but am not sure I will be able to have privacy.  I did discuss these concerns with my therapist, but have not found a solution yet.</p>
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<p>I know that if I have to I will tell him I cannot carry his weight ant the rest of the family's too anymore, and that if things do not improve, I will have to take drastic action such as admitting the marriage won't work.  But I do not want to do that.  My previous marriage ended when my daughter was not yet 3.  I do not want another failed marriage, another broken family, to be raising another child on my own with no father.  It feels like another failure, and the baby isn't even born yet, we haven't even taken legal vows.  Originally we were going to be handfasted this coming summer, but then we found out I was pregnant and the due date was too close to the wedding date, so we postponed it.  Now I'm wondering if it is wise for it to happen at all.  He keeps promising things will change, he tells me he loves me, and I believe him about that, and I love him too, but unless he can wake up and do his share in keeping this family together, there is no way it can work.  I have begun worrying about having a plan, in case I do have to go it alone with the kids again.  I have no income now.  Money scares me, the cost of moving and security deposit.  (To find a better job, we have already agreed we would be moving to Buffalo when the school year is done and the baby is here.  Now I worry that I'll be moving alone.  There are simply no jobs in Olean that will support a family, and I do not have my own transportation.  It's just too much to think about while stuck on bed rest.  I feel powerless and stuck, and I'm so worried about doing the best thing for the kids, all three of them.</p>
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<p>Am I over-reacting?  Am I communicating poorly?  Is there a better way I could be handling this?</p>
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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
<p>I talked to a nurse at my OB's office, and expressed some of my concerns about getting the apartment ready for us.  She has put us in contact with a woman from their MOMS program who can come over and help us create a strategy; she also knows resources for finding family counseling that can help us learn to work together.  Loki cleaned the kitchen this morning, which was a relief.  I want to see that continue.  I have so much anxiety about making the best home possible for all my kids.</p>
 
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