Question: Dear Luise: My boyfriend and I have only been together about a year and a half and already have a 7 month-old son. Lately all he does is hang out with the boys. He never spends time with us and won’t compromise. Seems like it’s a burden for him to spend time with his family. What should I do? Should I leave him? I’m sure he will never change. Please help. J.
Answer: Dear J.: I’m not sure how I can help if you are sure he will never change. (And you’re probably right.)
A lot of younger guys think they are ready for a monogamous relationship and children when they don’t have a clue what that entails. Truth but told, a lot of older men don’t develop into stable and interested partners and parents, either.
Often the way a man is brought up and how involved his father was with his children and with relationship duties tends to condition future attitudes. Many give being the “head-of-the-house” role a try but decide they would rather stay permanent teenagers; hanging out with other like-minded guys who are foot-loose and fancy-free.
This all-too-common situation leaves the women and children up the creek. The novelty wears off and the guys are “outa there,” even when they don’t move out. Hopes and dreams eventually fade for the women involved and discontent and bitterness surface. For most of them, there is no way they can revert to light-hearted school girls again. Those days are over.
If you are sure that your guy’s behavior reflects the belief that he made a mistake he is not going to rectify, then it might be better to go it alone. The problem is, that isn’t easy, either. What it does offer is the freedom to choose your own direction without having to raise two kids; your guy being the second child. Many women find leaving preferable and for some, another relationship comes along that is more to their liking. Being single brings hope with it. Some choose to live without hope in exchange for some degree of financial support while others stay because they are afraid to go. Often women in your situation don’t want to face the facts as you are doing.
If you see your life as a dead end, and you know in your heart that you and your child deserve better…it may be time to move on. Blessings, Luise