Love expert Lola Augustine Brown answers your pressing dating and relationship questions
I have a six month old baby daughter and a boyfriend who is a model father and partner when he is with us, which is a couple of days a week. He says that he loves us, but when he isn’t with us we sometimes don’t hear from him for days. The problem is that we live in different communities right now, and I hear from other people who live where he is from that he acts like he is single when he is there and has even told people that the baby isn’t his. When I ask him about this, he says that it isn’t true, but he hasn’t made any move to live with us full-time as he says his parents house is closer to his work. Moving in with us would add some time to his commute to work, but I feel like if he was serious about us being a family he would move in already. Am a fool to keep waiting for him?
Desperate new mom
Here’s the thing: Right now, you are letting your boyfriend have his cake and eat it, so his motivation to be a full-time dad and boyfriend isn’t very strong. He gets to take the best bits of the situation, no doubt leaving you to do most of the work bringing up your daughter, then swooping in and playing the good guy ever so often. The fact that he is telling people that the baby isn’t his (and you say people, so I’m assuming that this information didn’t just come from one source) is pretty disgusting behaviour, and doesn’t say much for his maturity, or the level of respect that he has for you.
Waiting around for him to commit while still thinking you are his girlfriend is foolish. At best, you are his baby momma and occasional friend with benefits. If this man loved you and wanted to be with you, he would have made some kind of commitment to you by now. Drag your self-esteem up off the floor and tell him that you’ve had enough, and that he either moves in and starts being a full-time boyfriend and father, or you won’t be welcoming him in your home or bed anymore.
If he chooses not to be with you, then you will be better off in the end, believe me. Even if right now you can’t imagine being without him, or you feel scared at the idea of being a single mother, in time you will realize that you are worth more than this, and that you can do lots better than you are doing now with this man. Be firm about not letting him use you as he likes, but allow him access to his daughter, and make sure that he financially supports his child. Lean on your friends and family for emotional support to get through this period, and be strong.
Being a single mother (which you pretty much are already anyway) is better than being in this half (or even quarter) relationship. Think about the example that you will be setting your daughter – do you want her to see you getting walked all over by her father? She will learn about healthy relationships from you, so you owe it to her to take care of yourself, and not be stuck in a relationship with someone that doesn’t respect you.
Got a question for Lola? Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org
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