• Tue. Jan 18th, 2022

Mother asks if partner spends too much time with his son

Dec 31, 2021

‘They are glued to each other’: Stepmother divides opinion after asking whether her partner spends too much time with his first son, 10, at the expense of their baby daughter

  • A mother vented on Mumsnet that her partner was uninterested in their baby
  • Dad will spend extra time with the ten-year-old boy and let him sleep in his bed 
  • Commenters are divided over whether he’s being neglectful or a doting father 

A mother has divided opinion after questioning whether her partner spends too much time with his son, at the expense of their new baby.  

The anonymous woman posted to the British parenting forum, Mumsnet, to share her worries, claiming that her partner and his child, 10, from a previous relationship are ‘glued to each other’s side’. 

Adding that she doesn’t want to offend him by suggesting he should spent more time with his new child, she said that she’s concerned he’s not giving their four-month-old daughter enough attention. 

On top of that she’s doing all the night feeds and most of the childcare.  

Commenters, who found out in a later post that the couple had been ‘together just over a year’, were torn over whether the father’s priorities were good parenting or neglectful.

An anonymous woman took to Mumsnet after feeling like her partner preferred her stepson over their new baby

She explained that the father and son would sleep in the same bed whenever he stayed over and wondered why he hadn’t bonded with the baby

Speaking about her home life, the mother said, ‘This is so hard to write, but I just feel like my partner prefers his 10-year-old son to our baby.’ 

‘My partner and his son have a close bond which I completely understand he’s his first born and I try so hard to be ok with it . But since we had our baby four months ago I feel like he hasn’t really bonded with our baby and he would pick his son any day of the week over our baby.

‘I do all the night feeds and do almost all of the looking after of our baby in the week and at the weekend.’ 

‘My stepson stays every weekend and he sleeps in bed with his dad every weekend and I just feel like our baby gets none of her dads attention when he’s here.

Some commenters felt that the father had every right to make sure his oldest child was comfortable with such sudden changes

‘He’s very clingy to his dad and since we’ve had our baby together I just feel like my partner is barely interested.’ 

She said she was initially worried her stepson would be jealous of the new baby getting too much attention, but it’s been quite the opposite.  

‘I know my partner loves our baby but it’s like in a different league to his son. I wouldn’t even mind as much I think if they didn’t share a bed.’

Some commenters noted how hard so many changes might have been for the young boy, and thought the dad was simply looking out for him.

Other commenters felt that he was neglecting his duties as a father to the new child and implored him to spend his time equally

One person said, ‘Given you’ve only been together just over a year, it’s quite a lot of upheaval for the boy. A new stepmother and half sibling in the space of a year, perhaps he is feeling insecure and anxious.’

 Another person agreed, saying: ‘His child(ren) will always be his priority, as I’m assuming yours are too. At the moment it seems his oldest child needs him because this is a huge adjustment and in a really short space of time.’ 

‘You read about so many feckless fathers on here who walk away from their children without a glance back, he sounds decent and yet the problem is he isn’t putting his other child on the back-burner.’

Another thought it would be unreasonable to expect the same amount of attention for a four-month-old baby, saying: ‘He sounds like a good dad, he is taking his son’s feelings into account after creating family no 2, increasing his contact time and being sympathetic to his son’s feelings. A four-month-old will barely know her dad exists let alone if she’s getting less attention than her brother.’

Other, however, felt that the father was being unfair to expect his partner to handle all the baby duties. 

One person said: ‘I’m going to go against the grain slightly and say that whilst he should be making his son feel as loved, you shouldn’t be doing all the care of the baby!’  

A second commenter agreed, saying: ‘He shouldn’t be sharing a bed with his son… I’m not sure why some of the replies are making this ok. Especially when his mother has said he sleeps fine on his own at her house.’

‘I think it’s nice he is making an effort to make sure stepson feels included in the family but it should be something you both are doing together as a family for all children involved. Not husband making a huge effort with only one child.’

Another commenter said: ‘I think there are two separate issues. It’s good that he doesn’t want his son to feel left out. But it’s not good he doesn’t do any night feeds and there is absolutely no excuse for that especially as his son isn’t there all the time.’

‘There is also no excuse for not spending any one-on-one time with his baby.’

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