Should I stay with my boyfriend?

By Dr. Marie Hartwell-Walker

I’ve been a single mom since i was 16 years old. i grad high school but me and my first born son’s father split up after about 4 yrs together. i had no support from the father so me and my son moved with my familysupporting my son with 2-3 jobs w/ help of my parents during and after high school where i found my ex-husband 6 months of relocating. we married because we found i was pregnant, i moved in and he changed becoming abusive physically, emotionally, finacially during my pregancy w/ my baby girl until what ended our marriage 4 months later was the death of my son who died at the age of 4 in 2006. eventually i learned my ex-husband beat my son which resulted in his death and at first i couldn’t believe it. soon after i learned there were 2 other times he punched my son and threatened that if my son ever told anyone about the abuse he would kill mommy. my ex is in prison serving a 10 yr sentence for 2nd deg murder and we had not gone to trial so i still have no closure as to what exactly happened except from what evidence says.

as for our daughter i gave birth 2 months after my son’s death went through court ordered therapy, dom viloence classes, cps visits, the works as well as depression and my ex making life hell by threatening me and denying my daughter just for a picture. this tore my world in so many ways im lost. only reason for living is my children even keeping a job and friends has been difficult and avoiding things that remind me of tragedy like mine, a person shouldn’t live like that.

im currently in a relationship, we dated for a year before making the it official. we been together for 2.5 years. he had been to every court hearing and known the situation and was understanding. i gave him a chance because i thought he was consistant, that he must be sencere in wanting to be with me and “claim” my daughter as his own but with in this year living w/ him, i’ve noticed he has become comfortable,friends first, making time for them not me resulting in jealousy towards his friends, neglecting me and my daughter at times except when he wants to have sex w/ me or my daughter’s bdays and appt. but partying and alcohol is more important.

if there’s a celebration or party where it involves drinks, he’s there leaves 10 pm and back by 6am resulting him in sleep all day or until he has to go work. he does this 1-3x a wk. im pregnant with his child now, 4 mon preg. after knowing for 3 mon he still has not told his fam im preg and keeps making excuses of when or why he hasn’t told them. im starting to think he is ashamed of me.

my car got repossessed so i have no car and i moved back in with my parents, i borrow my parents car if possible or catch the bus. he works as a bartender sometimes he works double shifts but i dont understand why he makes time for drinking and going out and not me or important things. he’s come to every appt so far that’s it. he expects me to get $ from my parents but if ask he gives $ sometimes and for them to get me a car. we have not even prepared for the baby at all because he says he has no $ to buy nessecity but he can get a new navigation system/ dvd/ ipod player, windows tinted, new 26″ rims, full back tattoo, shopping spree at nike town…need i say more?

within these past 4 months. he is a good guy just not responsible or ready. he pays $1200-1400 for 2 bedrm condo wont relocate to a bigger place for cheap because he likes the condo better and whats worse i let a friend of mine move in, they aren’t fooling around but he won’t put her out because he said she helps pay bills and wants to cram 4 of us in the master which is not big enough. i know i may nag but he doesn’t listen to me and ignores me. if he doesn’t want to talk about it he wont. i’ve cried out to him and he has not reacted.

he had asked me if right after i give birth from my c-section if i can go to work with a toddler and an infant at home yet he claims we cant afford daycare…he doesn’t buy food so my welfare $ buys food n diapers.i am on food stamps and cash assistance through the state while my boyfriend spends money on materialistic things for his plessure while he tells me he has no $. i try to take into consideration that he has no kids and he works a lot but it would be nice to be appreciated and recognized and that he would do things w/out me having to state the obvious. he says he loves me and want us to marry someday and hv more kids but now im not too sure. his father gave me useful advice about him, if he dont wanna do something he wont do it and there is no budging him. worst of all he’s going on a snowboarding trip a month before i deliver. what should i do? am i being unreasonable? am i going crazy? how can i get my life going?

-desperate and hopeless.

A: What a sad and difficult life you’ve been living. I hope you reread this letter and think about your own question: “Need I say more?” From my point of view, you don’t need to say another word. You have terrible taste in men. You keep trying to make a loving family with men who don’t have it in them to be responsible and loving toward you or your children.

Your current boyfriend is no exception. He helped you make a baby but he’s in no way interested in stepping up and becoming a responsible father. He takes and takes and takes from you and even wants you to go right to work after having your baby so you can give him some more.

My best suggestion to you is that you stop providing him with the money to buy his toys and focus on taking care of yourself and your children. Get into therapy to learn how to choose winners instead of losers for a partner. Go to school and get a trade. You need to have the skills to get a good job to support your kids. Meanwhile, I’m glad you have the kind of folks who will take you in. I hope it’s a positive environment so you can stay there awhile until you get on your feet. Therapy and some support from friends and family will help you get the confidence and skills you need to feel okay about going it alone until you find the right guy.

I wish you well.
Dr. Marie

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Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 24 Feb 2010

APA Reference
Hartwell-Walker, D. (2010). Should I stay with my boyfriend?. Psych Central. Retrieved on November 21, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2010/02/24/should-i-stay-with-my-boyfriend-2/