I would be happy to help you with your situation. Please answer these questions first, so that I may better answer your question.
What are your ages?
What exactly are you getting out of the relationship?
What exactly do you think he is getting out of the relationship?
How often do you bring up the subject of marriage?
Do you have problems being without a man?
What do your children think of this man?
First off, I have to just say "WOW!" You are one strong woman for putting up with his abusive behavior for so many years. He sounds afraid to make any real commitment to you and is comfortable in the current situation. From his perspective, why should he bother marrying you when you put up with the current relationship? You "jump" whenever he needs you, which is a wonderful thing for a WIFE to do for her HUSBAND. He is getting the kind of treatment a great wife would provide without providing you with the type of secure support that he should be giving you and your children. If this man were your husband, I would suggest that you seek marital therapy for support and attempt to keep a positive attitude because you would be doing the right thing for your husband, even if his behavior towards you was unloving. However, given the status of your relationship with him, you are certainly not obligated to put up with such treatment. As a side note, If I treated my wife this way, she wouldn't even look back to see if the door hit me on her way out. It sounds like your self-esteem is quite low, and your boyfriends' behavior towards you has been contributing to your low self-esteem. You mentioned a history of putting up with abusive relationships. Given this history, your perception of your relationship may be skewed. He is taking advantage of your submissive subservience that stems from your desire to be loved. You seem like you are aching to be loved unconditionally and he is stepping on the air hose that leads to your "love tank." Although this example is silly, I think that it illustrates your situation well. You are giving and giving out of your "love tank" and you are getting nothing back in return for your giving. You are a unique and strong woman for putting up with his abuse and continuing to give for so long. He may not drink, use drugs, or beat the children, but his attitude and treatment of you is abusive and ill-willed. Additionally, his behavior towards you is setting a terrible example for your children. They will learn that it is ok to be abusive in relationships, and they will likely struggle to make commitments in their adult relationships. At this point, I understand your financial situation, but I must stress that "money does not buy happiness"....I'm sure you have learned that from this situation. A "real man" takes care of his family and is willing to sacrifice himself for the well-being of his family. His behavior is not characteristic of a man with integrity, which is certainly not uncommon in our society. He will probably continue with this pattern of behavior until something dramatic happens to stop it.
BotXXXXX XXXXXne: If you wish to remain in this relationship, you absolutely must get him to agree to couples therapy with a Clinical Psychologist. If he was really concerned about you leaving him and taking his money, you could simply sign a pre-nuptial contract that would sign away your rights to his property in case of a divorce. His excuse seems very poor and may not be the real issue. He sounds like he has commitment issues that stem from deeper issues in his past. You are still young enough to pursue other relationship opportunities. Your children...as difficult as it may be for you to understand...are more concerned about their relationship with you than they are about having his money. You need to protect your children from this man's abusive behavior. I understand this will be very difficult for you, as you are probably scared of losing what little love and reassurance your receive from him. Many GOOD men would be happy to have a woman like you. Again, if you cannot bring yourself to leave this relationship, you need to get into therapy. You must ask yourself: Can I live for the rest of my life with him treating me like this and feeling like this? I suspect that your answer is NO! Please feel free to follow-up on this with me. I will do my best to help you make the right choice.
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