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Dr. Paige
Dr. Paige, Psychologist
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 1427
Experience:  Ph.D. Licensed Psychologist
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Last year I started seeing a man who was recently divorced.

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Last year I started seeing a man who was recently divorced. I to was recently divorced. Our relationship quickly became serious with hopes and dreams for our future and combining our families. I thought everything was perfect. During the holidays I could tell he was getting depressed and felt sorry for kids. His divorce was very ugly and both he & his ex brought their children into everything. The result was his kids disliking him. At the beginning of the year he decided to go back to his ex. As much as I missed him & us I admired that he was willing to put everything aside and start fresh with his wife & kids. Although my heart was broken. I never felt or loved someone like I did him. We always had the best time together he was truly my Prince Charming. We talked for awhile after the break up until I told him I couldn't do it anymore and that he had to stop contacting me. He needed to commit to what he was doing and I needed to move on with my life. That lasted 4 days he text me and told me he couldn't not talk to me. I told him he didn't have a choice. Again that didn't last. I was week and I missed and loved him so much it was the best most relieving feeling to talk to him again. That was in February and we have talked every day since. Worse than that we've seen each other every week since then....we've been having an affair of sorts for 5 months. He's told me things like he just needs to raise his kids, he'll make this all up to me, he won't stay the rest of his life. He's asked me to wait for him. I'm flattered when he says these things. But at the same time I know I can't wait 3 years and who really knows if he'll ever leave again. I don't know what to do. I don't want to give him an ultimatum but Imisd him. I want 100%. I don't believe that he loves his ex. I do truly believe he's there for his kids and its cheaper this way for him. But I can't keep living like this. What do I do??? How do I end this craziness?
Hello. You are going to have to give both him and yourself an ultimatum. You know what you are doing does not make you feel good and it isn't what you want. This is not going to be easy for you, in fact will be very difficult, but you know what you have to do. If you can't wait 3 years for him (and you shouldn't) you HAVE to tell him it's all or nothing. You just have to. There is no reason he can't raise his kids and be with you, it happens all the time. Divorced and split families can make it work. Just because a father or mother is not married to the other of their children, does not mean they cannot be just as active in their life. He is in fact hurting his children and his ex by doing this to them as well. He needs to be happy and he is not. You need to be happy and you are not. If you are both happy together, then that is what needs to happen. As I see it, you have to tell him that he has to make a choice. It sounds as though you have both spoken about this at length and you need to continue to do so. He isn't choosing you or his kids and that's how he makes it sound. He is choosing between you and his ex. His kids will always be his kids. He will always be a father to them and he should be able to be with you and raise them just fine.
You know this is a mess, you know it can't continue. As harsh as an ultimatum is, you really have no choice. He is having everything he wants right now and you are getting what? It isn't fair to you.
Tell him what you need from him and go from there.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Ok one more question. I was talking to my mom about this last night. She asked me if he leaves her and comes back to me how do I know that he won't do this very thing to me in the future. I know that there is really no way of answering that and that I would have to trust him. I feel like this a unique situation because he clearly doesnt love her like he should or he would'nt still be talking to me. He would of committed to her and his family 100%. But that doesnt change the fact that he chose her over me. I do feel like he chose her mainly for his kids but that doesnt change the fact he still chose her regardless of the reasons he thought he could make it work again with her for them. Do I believe he loves her yes I do, I believe he loves her as just as I love my kids dad but I don't believe he is where he wants to be. So my question is have you dealt with situations like this before? Is the outcome ever good? Am I just his second choice, the fall back girl?

You are absolutely right, there is no way to know what he is going to do and trust is the thing you will have to work on in the relationship if he comes back. This situation is more common than you would think, I deal with it a lot. There are good outcomes, but it takes both people to be dedicated to each other and the future. Men feel that their role in life is to be the provider, the one who takes care of problems and fixes things. When conflicts like this arise and the man doesn't know how to handle it, he can make irrational decisions and get to the point where he can't or doesn't want to make a choice. Finding a way to have it all without dealing with conflict and having to make difficult decisions is sometimes the result. That is where you are right now with him. He is trying to handle everything without having to make a choice and cause conflict. He is going through a lot right now and it will be hard for him no matter what he chooses to do. If he does come back to you, he will still have inner conflict until he thinks that things are resolved on all sides. It can be done, it has been done. It isn't easy. Sometimes there is counseling involved. It is a tough road. You have to be firm but supportive at the same time so he feels he is making the right choice.
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