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New dad, bad situation.


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#1 expectingdad

Posted 30 September 2015 - 02:03 PM

Summary(yes, summary) of me right now.

I'm a new dad. Well...I will be in a few months.

Me and my girlfriend have always been so amazingly close. We clicked right from friends and everything flowed so easily between us. We have been together 3 great years.

Since pregnancy, girlfriend has turned against some of her close friends, my family and now me.

I am very close with my family, live with them currently. But myself and gf were planning our own place and this was in progress. Her and my family got along well before. Since pregnancy, she has never come over or seen any of my family, blank refuses to come near and at the start even got angry at them getting us any baby things. She has eased up on getting things but has even blankly told my parents to back off when all they have done is offer to be there if we needed them at any point.

We have had conflict and disagreements on and off over the last few months on this and on just how we do things differently. I've always tried for us just even to have middle ground so we can both be happy.

Each time there's conflict, she will go silent on me for periods and won't acknowledge me until I come back apologising and begging her back. The issue is never actually resolved and so comes up again....repeat over months.

Most recently, out of the blue, she got angry at me speaking to a good friend of both of us. This is a friend she had turned against as mentioned previous, for no real reason other than she was looking out for her. My gf had known all along that I was still in contact occasionally and this was never before an issue.

This time, I couldn't handle any more conflict. I did not run back, worried that this was just going to go the same spiral each time previous. I was at a loss how to move forward.

After not speaking for 4 weeks to me. I get a text, threats of CSA and of us separating for good and that I had decided relationship was over.

However I went along with this, thinking this may be the best option to put us and conflict aside and do all we can for our child. Things are at least amicable now.

Later, I get a call. From midwife bump measurements, Baby showing a lack of growth in the week and she's going for a checkup scan. She asks me if I want to come, of course I go along, everything fine heathy and average size. Things are nice and amicable between us. I kept distance though.

Later i get a pushy text asking to contribute towards buying pram. Her parents had said they were buying this but gf says she is chipping in because parents are housing her until she and baby get a place(another threat of separation?) This is followed by angry at my delay in text back(I was driving).

I go easy and ignore the provocations and offer that I am happy to contribute for the pram and I also have some things for baby I can take round whenever best for her.

She says to take them over that night. I take things over, some baby things I and my family have gathered, as constant conflict stopped us getting more things together.

Its a nice night, we put all things away organized and just sit casually chatting like we used to. I try and hold back and just keep things as friends still for now.

Time to go, awkward as were not used to saying bye in any way different to what we have done the past near 3 years. We cave a little and have a hug, and I leave.

And here I am....

I think she's worried and scared about our relationship breaking down, she's trying to get me back but doing this in a reverse manner. Then when I go to her or am there for her. Things are nice and happy because she has me back.

This is also working as from the nice times it reminds me of the nice times we have had and brings out how much I do love and care about her and makes me sad and want that again.

And since I care about her anyway I hate her being worried, I want to support her and be there for her as much as I can as a friend at least and to be part of baby's life as I don't want her doing that alone. I feel its my responsibility.

I'm a bit broken,depressed and confused and at a complete loss now at how to handle the situation though. I do love the girl lots but I don't know if we can ever resolve the issues between us which repeatedly is hurting both of us and is hugely unhealthy but I'm struggling with thoughts of us apart.

If I haven't pickled your mind as mine is right now or if you've been in my position and know the best next steps, I'd appreciate any advice.

#2 Lunafreya

Posted 30 September 2015 - 02:20 PM

hugs to you expecting dad. The behavior she's showing sounds controlling and abusive. This aren't likely going to change with her once the child is born, as its likely going to be more of the same.

Dont have any advice, just wanted to let you know that it looks like you have the makings of a great dad trying to do the best for your child's mother. :D

#3 Mumma3

Posted 30 September 2015 - 02:37 PM

This sounds really hard.
Perhaps some relationship counselling would be helpful- both individually and together.
You could try contacting Relationships Australia.
Best wishes.

#4 niggles

Posted 30 September 2015 - 02:44 PM

I wouldn't assume she wants you back. There are clearly some big issues in your relationship in her mind at least that you don't quite get or that she hasn't shared. I would suggest you ask her to attend counseling so you can work on building a strong foundation for being co-parents. For all of your sakes. But you can't make her want to be with you.

#5 wombats

Posted 30 September 2015 - 02:51 PM

It is possible she is suffering from some kind of perinatal anxiety/depression or something and needs help.  If she really seems to have changed a lot since becoming pregnant it would be worth trying to get her to see someone to check her mental health out.

Otherwise do whatever you can to maintain some kind of relationship so you can more easily be part of your child's life, make sure that you formalise any access arrangements.

#6 Chopster

Posted 30 September 2015 - 02:51 PM

This is going to be a tough time.  Some women get real antsy during pregnancy and blame hormones.

#7 Caribou

Posted 30 September 2015 - 02:51 PM

Pregnancy hormones do weird things to us. I remember going a little crazy over the most stupid things, but I still felt ppl buying things for my baby was taking away the excitement for selecting baby's first clothes/toys/etc. especially when they bought so much it starting feeling like it wasn't even my baby anymore just public property.

Is she very different before pregnancy? She could be experiencing pre natal depression and lashing out. Having a baby is incredibly overwhelming even if there's support in place from family. She may not feel like she can say she's not ok.

Would she be open to counselling between the two of you? Even if you're sure the relationship between two of you is over, nothing more important than two parents co-parenting amicably. A counsellor can help give a neutral ground for both of you.

I hope you figure things out that's best for the baby and everyone involved. Best of luck!

#8 Hollycoddle

Posted 30 September 2015 - 02:55 PM

That sounds awful OP.  Having seen male friends go through similar situations I can only advise that you never forget that you have equal rights to this child as its mother.  You can't force her to be with you, however if it turns out that you remain separate just remember that you have the right to be involved in decision-making about the child and that you also have the right to draw boundaries of your own with regard to your interactions with your ex-partner.  While it is good to be supportive of her make sure you are also being mindful of where you stand in the situation - there may be others in a better position (ie. her family, who seem to be involved and supportive of her) to be looking out for her in this way if it is going to cause issues for you to be that involved if she doesn't seem to want you to be at this stage.

I have seen many fathers having to commence proceedings in the court and then just giving up because it's all too hard.  Your child needs a relationship with you and God forbid that your situation heads down that path, you want to be able to show them when they are older that you did all you could and didn't just give up.

Edited by Mollycoddle, 30 September 2015 - 03:04 PM.


#9 JAPNII

Posted 30 September 2015 - 03:04 PM

I feel for you OP but a few questions;

1. Was the pregnancy unplanned? Did your GF actually want to go ahead?

2. Have you tried asking why she is so grumpy/upset during a quiet moment or what the actual issues are?

3. Is your family actually a bit pushy by others standards? Is it possible she was feeling quite pressured?

4. Are her concerns about finances now that she will likely be out of the workforce for a bit?

I would recommend you see a counsellor first yourself then one together.

#10 ~river song~

Posted 30 September 2015 - 03:33 PM

To ask a hairy question does she want the baby, is it possible the child isn't yours? If her behaviour is new and she sounds like she is displaying some weird traits of guilt or anxiety or something if pushing away friends, family and yourself. I may be way of base, but I've seen guilt manifested in this way.

#11 JustBeige

Posted 30 September 2015 - 03:35 PM

expectingdad,  welcome to Essential Baby.

I am so sorry for what you are going through right now.  It does sound very confusing for you and your GF.

I agree with PPs in that counselling is a good first step for both of you.  It sounds like you need to work on your communication (doesnt every couple) and counselling will be able to give you the tools to help.   I would also recommend you go by yourself if she isnt wanting to.

You can access if via Relationships Australia, or even get a referral from your GP.

Good luck with it all.  I hope everything works out the way you want it to.

#12 CallMeFeral

Posted 30 September 2015 - 06:06 PM

Another one recommending counselling. Pregnancy is possibly bringing up some unexpected emotions/fears/concerns/protectiveness or something in her and she may not know how to deal with it. But it doesn't sound like you guys can deal with it just on your own, the communication sounds very fragmented and there is probably more unsaid than said.
A good counsellor might be able to tease this out. And if the first one you see is no good - keep trying another till you find a good one. Not all counsellors are great, and even good ones will not always click with everyone, but it can be really valuable when you find one.

#13 KT1978

Posted 30 September 2015 - 08:18 PM

I would say keep the lines of communication open without any pressure about the relationship for now. Even if you break up, you still need to build a parenting relationship with her and right now it is on her terms.

Emotionally - a text every day or two and regular phone calls asking how she is? Does she want anything?

Practically - does she need more maternity clothes? To be driven to appointments? If she's finished work does she need some financial support?

Is it possible her parents have caused all these falling outs with people? It sounds odd that she isn't just falling out with you. Are they unsupportive or very critical? Or controlling?

#14 expectingdad

Posted 30 September 2015 - 10:44 PM

Thank you all for the responses. Its put me a bit more at ease and given me some things to try.

To the questions out there, it was an unexpected pregnancy but we are both very happy about it, and people are all happy for us, there's been no negative that side. The baby is also definitely mine.

I don't think my family have been too pushy, as said before they just want to be there for us and I just want them to be a little involved as prospective grandparents.

Her parents are supportive of her and her dad understands my side of things but her mother stands by her verbatim, so if she comes out with that all this is just me being awful its gospel.

Right now everything is my fault and I don't think she realises what this is doing to me at all. She seems to think that this is just been awful for her and I've done this.

But then when we do things it all turns sweet again.

I think I want to just keep friends just now to be there for them but avoid the conflict were having in a relationship.

She's just now text me saying I'm leading her on by being friendly to her at the scan and when I took things over and that she doesn't understand any of what I've done while she's trying to be fair.

"If you don't want me, say it. Don't lead on the 8 month pregnant mother of your child."

Edited by expectingdad, 01 October 2015 - 03:02 AM.


#15 Caribou

Posted 01 October 2015 - 09:48 AM

Look, just remember, even though you may feel your family and anyone else hasn't been too push, the perception is different for other people. Definition of pushy varies between people. But if she feels she's not being respected on her wishes she may start to react with hostility.

You don't have to get back with her, but you two definitely need to have counselling to do successful co-parenting. It is possible she feels you're misleading her and you feel your not. Perception. See a counsellor. I think it will really help.

#16 JAPNII

Posted 01 October 2015 - 09:58 AM

She may also be suffering pre natal depression fuelled by anxiety.

I can't stress enough....counselling - I would pitch it as that you really want to find a way through so you can both work together to be good parents...

#17 Lunafreya

Posted 01 October 2015 - 10:07 AM

Thanks for the update, she still looks to me like she's controlling and manipulative. Particularly this part.

Quote

Right now everything is my fault and I don't think she realises what this is doing to me at all. She seems to think that this is just been awful for her and I've done this.

But then when we do things it all turns sweet again.

I'm wondering if you should seek legal advice about access to your child once it's born, as if she's doing this now she will do this too you when it's born and it'll be much, much worse.

#18 Hollycoddle

Posted 01 October 2015 - 10:14 AM

Quote

She's just now text me saying I'm leading her on by being friendly to her at the scan and when I took things over and that she doesn't understand any of what I've done while she's trying to be fair.

"If you don't want me, say it. Don't lead on the 8 month pregnant mother of your child."

Um yeah, another one for controlling and abusive.  SHE was the one who invited you to the scan - how did she think you'd be with her?  Of course you're going to be nice!  SHE was the one who left YOU then dragged you back so how can she say it's you trying to get her back?  Time to get some ground rules in place to protect yourself - do what PPs have said and see a counsellor by yourself (and maybe even a lawyer).  You need to start out as you mean to go on.  Good luck!

Edited by Mollycoddle, 01 October 2015 - 10:42 AM.


#19 steppy

Posted 01 October 2015 - 10:25 AM

I'm very sorry for you expecting dad. You have unfortunately 18 years of dealing with this ahead of you.

#20 born.a.girl

Posted 01 October 2015 - 10:46 AM

You seem to be in a situation with her where you can't win: be offhand wanting to give her space, and you're effectively dumping her;  be nice to her because it's the right thing to do, and you're leading her on.

Whatever the cause of her issues (whether it is your family or not - and strong couples pull together if their families are an issue) you need to urgently seek some advice for yourself, and also jointly if she agrees.

Whatever happens to your relationship, your child is a different matter altogether, and you need to learn the lines of communication which will ensure your rights are not trampled on.


Hang around in here - lots of people have been through the mill with this and can give great advice, like you've had already.

#21 Lunafreya

Posted 01 October 2015 - 10:57 AM

Have you tried calling mensline? They should be able to point you in the right direction in terms of counseling and legal advice

The number is 1300 78 99 78

I keep stressing legal advice and I think you need to get on top of this before the child is born so your girlfriend can't do something like stopping you from seeing the child for some stupid reason. As I can totally see this happen, unless she changes A LOT which I doubt she will, partially with her mum on her side.

Good luck, and keep us posted as this happens so much with dads these days it's sad.

#22 PooksLikeChristmas

Posted 01 October 2015 - 11:03 AM

Mensline is a great suggestion.

#23 KT1978

Posted 01 October 2015 - 11:21 AM

So she feels you have broken up with her? You are unclear if you are separated or not in your posts and I wonder if you have been delaying moving in/supporting her while leaving her parents to do that.

If she believes you have broken up/lost interest in her since she got pregnant, she's acting protectively if you "lead her on".

I can kind of see her perspective now.

If you want to be with this girl, you need to step up and be clear about it. If you don't, you still need to step up and be clear about it. No more "maybe we are broken up" "maybe we will move in after the baby comes".




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