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Considering the future: Should I leave now, or wait?
December 29, 2003
9:49 am
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artist 2
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It's pretty obvious that I won't be with Bf and his son for much longer... with all the stress of not liking his son, not wanting to be around him, the lack of privacy, lack of consideration....

But, I need to stay to work on my art in the studio. My question is should I tell him I won't be staying permanently or marrying him, and stay a few more months to work on my art? Or, should I NOT tell him and stick it out until my portfolio is done, then tell him I'm leaving?

Essentially he's my landlord, for I am paying rent to stay in his house. Is it fair to let him know in two months? Is it fair to let him think that I'm still interested in trying to make things work, when I really plan on leaving? He needs the money from the rent...

What about his son? What is most fair to him, after staying there for a year and a half and he's gotten used to me as the female/mother figure? With a mother like his it concerns me to leave - another female figure who's leaving him?

I don't want to manipulate or lie, but am also concerned with finishing my work. And, my bf is poor and needs the money from my rent. If I leave, he'll not get the money.

Still another option is that I rent the studio from him, at a less rate than the rent I've been paying. Then I could live elsewhere and still be able to work on my art.

I know this is not a crisis, so am hoping it does not come across as frivilous. Still, if anyone wants to respond with ideas, it would be really appreciated.

December 29, 2003
10:28 am
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I feel guilt about leaving - mainly for the son, but also about leaving the relationship. It feels like abandonment, though being in it is miserable for all. Isnt' it right to leave and give both me and BG and his son a chance for something bettter? Is there a silver lining?

December 29, 2003
10:47 am
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blondee
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Artist2
If you feel uncomfortable living there. Why not get your own place and rent the studio? That way you'll be helping your b/f financially and be giving yourself a little peace of mind. How old is his son? Doesn't your b/f feel that you lost or are losing the connection between each other?

Blondee

December 29, 2003
10:54 am
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Thanks, good suggestion. Does he feel the loss of connection? I think so, but is not - or is willing to keep trying anything to see if it will get better.

I've finally decided it's his son and how his presence effects our forming a relationship that's sound. He will always be there, so it's not likely anything will change in regards to our developing a private relationship. In fact, we don't have a private relationship, which has been some of the cause of my sadness.

December 29, 2003
11:23 am
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gingerleigh
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Hey Artist, how ya doing? What sort of art are you working on? Do you *have* to work on it there? Can it be moved? Or are you worried that taking it to a different locale would remove the inspiration?

December 29, 2003
11:55 am
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It's painting and it can be done anywhere, really, I guess. The only thing is the studio was built for me, back when i was planning to stay. Now there's the bill from its construction... and so if I leave I'd want to help pay for it anyway. Thus the hesitation to leave - a studio built for me... plus the guilt of leaving it for him to pay for, when he's already to broke. But, his parents are rich and offered to cover the expense, should I leave. They know about the difficulties...

December 29, 2003
11:56 am
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So, it seems I should tough it out, play nice and friendly, and finish my work there. By then it should be paid for and I should be free...

December 29, 2003
1:03 pm
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gingerleigh
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How does that solution feel in your gut? Does it feel "right"? Does it feel "reasonable"? Does it feel "compromising"? Does it feel "fair"? If the solution feels ok to you, go for it. If it doesn't, what doesn't quite feel right yet?

I'll bet that the studio be used as something else when your things are out of it, perhaps a spare fun room, toy room, movie room, music room, office... Extra rooms add value to a home after all, so it's not like your boyfriend will be left with a huge chartreuse elephant to contend with once it is no longer used as a studio...

Have you talked openly and frankly with your boyfriend about the expenses and who should cover it? If he is reading the same writing on the wall that you are, he is probably expecting some sort of blowout/confrontation. Would it be easier for all of you if you talked to him openly, lovingly, and focused just on that one question? If he feels overwhelmed by expenses, perhaps the two of you working out a timetable for paying the expense of the studio will alleviate some of the guilt you are feeling too.

December 29, 2003
1:15 pm
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Zinnie
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Artist,

To me it sounds like you are trying very hard to do everything, when he has more than adequate resources (parents) to make ends meet.

Why are you afraid of leaving? Are you sure you really want out? Does his son live there with you guys? I think you may have told me and I forgot. Have you talked to him about the fact that you feel you do not have a personal relationship with him? Also, if his son lives there, are you willing to accept his son as a part of the relationship? As a step-parent, the kids have to be included to some degree - although even if you have your own natural children, you have to realize that you need to have your own relationship with your significant other; which so many times is the trap that many marriages/relationships fall into. Is this the only problem that you have in the relationship?

It sounds to me like you have made up your mind, and that is good. If you can honestly afford to do what you need to do on your own, why prolong the agony. However, if you have really not worked this out with him, then perhaps you both need to sit down and talk.

Good luck!

Love,

Zinnie

December 29, 2003
1:32 pm
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Ginger:

How does that solution feel in your gut? The solution to stay for a few months, pay for the studio, and gather my works together feels reasonable, but it doesn't feel right - why? because of guilt in leaving him with this debt. He built it for me... the solution I refer to does not feel compromising, but I sure do wish I had decided a long time ago. It feels fair to me, considering his parents offered to pay for it. but now they have given me some art gifts, to encourage me to paint. Now I want to paint but not support their son and his son. And it feels guilty again.

Yes the studio could be used as a playhouse, or an extra office space for my BF. He used to call it "our" space anyway, even when he promised it to me. Though it's not connected to the house, it's still very usable.

He and I should probably have that frank conversation about how much per month I should pay. That will help, getting it down on paper, so to speak.

These are all great suggestions and thoughts I had not considered. Thanks for helping me figure it out.

December 29, 2003
1:41 pm
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Zinnie:

He had resources in his parents, but has no degree or and very little money from his job to support himself or his son. Oh and the other thing is he's trying to put himself through school too. Even more drain on his resources.

I'm afraid of leaving because I don't know if I want to end the relationship. If I leave it might create a fissure so wide, that it can't be brought together, even it I wanted it. Do I want it? Bf is a loving individual and he's helped me a lot. Part of what I'm feeling is guilt in leaving him in such a bad situation when he's helped me sort things out. He's been pretty honest about my tendencies. I'm pretty sure I want to move out of the house with his son. I'm tired of the lack of space and privacy. Plus living with a seven-year-old is wearing. He's always so loud, it really gets on my nerves. This past week with him out of school, he's been around every single minute. I'm just tired of having him around. I've accepted him as part of the relationship. It's him that I don't like. I'm a very quiet person. He's ADHD and very disruptive.

The other problem is that my BF and I don't have much of a relationship between us. I mean we know each other, but when it comes to support and disagreements, things quickly break down. I mean he's good at analysis when I'm having problems outside of the home, but he's not very supportive when it comes to inside the home, or with his son.

I think like Ginger says, we should talk about how to pay for everything, and how things will be for him without my being there.

Thanks for you response Zinnie!

December 29, 2003
3:23 pm
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Zinnie
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Hi Artist,

Do you love him?

December 29, 2003
3:39 pm
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I dont' know.. I thought so once... but the fighting and some of the things he's done and said have hurt me. And, when I tell him, he blows me off and gets angry. It's like he can't handle negative feedback on his behaviors. His response is anger and he accuses me of having a control problem. Right now I feel he's been pretty unfair, considering what I've given up to live there... and it's an old story... so because it seems he does not love me - and I base that on not being listened to when I have a gripe, plus his accusations... it just seems that if he really loved me he would be more concerned with my comfort than keeping the peace and keeping control over things.

Everything is OK as long as I don't complain. But, who wants to hear complaints?

I really don't know how I feel about him...

December 29, 2003
3:48 pm
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But then the question was do I love him? And I'm basing that on if he loves me... that's codependent.

But, if I don't believe someone loves me, then there's no possibility for a relationship, even if I loved them.

You know he says "I love you..." on the phone and at the door, etc. When I hear it, I think, well, what about this and that and all the things I've been trying to tell you? I wonder if he would still love me if I was able to leave and give precise reasons for leaving, like:

the son being loud and always in my space

the son not having any self control and being rude

the house being dirty all the time and I'm the only one who notices

my complaints being labled as "controlling" behaviors

the son's mother is a psychopath

having to financially support both son and him

not having peace and quiet most of the time

It seems I can't think of more, but when I'm there it the reasons seem completely overwhelming as to why I don't want to be there..... and then I'm ready to leave...

So do I have to have a reason at all, or can I just say, "I'm leaving."

December 29, 2003
3:50 pm
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my complaints being labled as "controlling" behaviors

should say:

being labeled as a controlling person when I bring up something I want to change

December 29, 2003
4:11 pm
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Oh, one other thing... whenever something goes wrong, Bf says it's HIS house and these are HIS rules. That I abide by certain behaviors in his house. Isn't that a little controlling, considering I'm paying RENT to live there?

Granted I've done some pretty inappropriate things in front of his son, like arguing right in from of him and engaging in passive/agressive behaviors like slamming doors.

But even so, does he have a right to demand they way I will act and be because it's HIS HOUSE??

December 29, 2003
6:01 pm
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Zinnie
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Honey, pack up your bags and run!

I think I have told you this before, but let me remind you. When I married my first husband, he came complete with five children.

I had met his kids before we married, but we lived in another country, so that was it, I had only "met" them when we went to Canada to spend time with them on their holiday from school.

But, when we married, both him AND their Mother made sure that they knew that if I said something it was exactly the same as if either one of them and told them something. If they did something and I thought it was wrong, and I punished them, they backed me up 100%. Same thing for all of us. If their Mother told them something, it carried over at our house.

We eventually relocated back to Canada and moved right around the corner so that the kids could come and go freely between their parents, and we could all help with what needed to be done as far as they went. You know, shuttling back and forth for activities, school, music, friends, Dr.'s and dentist - you know all the stuff kids require!

So, if their Mother doled out punishment and they were at our house the same punishment went, if they were in trouble at our house, their Mom backed us 100%.

Additionally, we ALL need our own space. My husband has his "room" where he has his excercise equipment, hunting and fishing stuff. I have my "nook office" with my desk, computer, books and my big comfy chair. If his son is allowed in "your space" or allowed to disturb your belongings. That is just not right.

Z.

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