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You Asked: Am I Staying for the Kids?

Dear Sugar,

I have been with my boyfriend for four years. He had a son who is four, and we have a son who is almost two. This past summer, I left him because I wasn't happy with our relationship. We took about three months apart, still trying to hang out because of the kids, but we saw other people during this time. I soon realized that I wanted my family back, my kids, and for the most part I missed him. I'm only 22 and am scared that I'm only here for the sake of the kids. They are everything to me and although I love my boyfriend, I cant help but wonder if my boys weren't part of the picture if I would have gone back this past time. The separation tore both of them apart. I'm so lost and I'm not sure if my heart is scared of being hurt again. Things between my boyfriend and me are great right now, and usually that ends up with something going wrong. Am I so scared of the bad that could happen that I'm mentally preparing for it? Or is it really my heart telling me that this isn't what I want for the rest of my life? The worry of if I'm missing something or if there isn't more out there is eating me up inside. I am so lost. — Confused Connie

To see Dear Sugar's answer

Dear Confused Connie,

You say that after your separation from your boyfriend, it was him that you ultimately missed, so what is making you second guess yourself now? Was there something that happened or are you simply feeling a void in your relationship? We could all live our lives wondering if there is something better out there for us, but that isn't any way to live.

I am not surprised that your kids were torn up by the separation, but you need to remember that the only way they will be happy is if their parents are happy. You won't be able to be a good mother to them if you aren't content in your own life. Are you and your boyfriend keeping the lines of communication open? Have you talked to him about what you need in order to make you happy in this relationship? Have you considered couples counseling?

At the end of the day, Connie, you aren't nailed down to this relationship, so if you are still feeling that this relationship isn't right for you, you have other options. While you want to tough it out for the sake of your kids, everyone will be better off in the long run if you do what will make you happy. Good luck.


Join The Conversation
CaterpillarGirl CaterpillarGirl 9 years
wow, you didnt think of the kids when you shacked up why think of them now?
Staying for the kids is the perfect reason not to runaway. I know you are not married, but you have placed yourself in the situation of a married couople, and when kids are involved, you should always work it out. Some people think that leaving because you are not happy is a justifiable excuse, but then you have to explain to your children that their happiness, and ability to grow up with 2 parents in their life was not as important to you as your own happiness. You should seek marriage counseling, even though you are not legally married.
Eternity Eternity 9 years
you are only 22...barely an adult yourself! Please get counseling, please get married, and work out your relationship. Your kids need you both. While its not good for them to grow up with you being unhappy, its 100000% more damaging for them to go through multiple partners while you date, or no daddy/mommy model at all. In fact, its been proven that kids that grow up in households where the parents even argued, learned how to deal with arguing and conflict better than kids with single parents.
lintacious lintacious 9 years
you are too young to be unhappy.
cubadog cubadog 9 years
I also lived with parents that were miserable and it was very stressful for my sister and I. I have handled it well in my adult life unfortunately my sister hasn't. I would definitely recommend counselling and opening the lines of communication with your boyfriend. You expecting failure or problems any second because things are going great is not healthy for any of you.
ma9321 ma9321 9 years
I agree with Cymone! You never know what's going to happen.
Cymone Cymone 9 years
DarkRayne- She was probably happy at the time. I'm sure she's not a fortune teller.
DarkRayne DarkRayne 9 years
Why have kids in the first place with someone you aren't happy with.
Cymone Cymone 9 years
I read your story and I feel for you. I myself have never been in your situation first-hand, but I was a child caught in a messy divorce. I have to say I do remember times before the divorce when there was nothing but fighting. I can honestly say I'm glad my parents didn't stay together. As much as I would love to have had that happy perfect family, I could read the misery on parents face. Let them remember the happy times you guys can have apart rather than the uncomfortable, sad times you spend together.
Masqueraded_Angel Masqueraded_Angel 9 years
Here's a tip to think about: When your children get older and start asking, "Mommy, why don't you live with Daddy?" think about what you would say to them. It's not going to sound good if you say something like, "Mommy just didn't like Daddy anymore" or "Mommy found a new friend." So the point of what I'm saying is...don't leave for selfish reasons. Take Dear's suggestions about talking to your bf and even counseling. If those don't work, then at least you can say you tried.
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