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Old 06-11-2008, 10:31 PM   #21
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Fed, I love you man. Do whatever you want but please keep us in this beautiful soapy loop.


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Old 06-11-2008, 10:37 PM   #22
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thanks to those of you who actually read into the situation a bit and offered sincere advice.

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Old 06-11-2008, 10:39 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by haha View Post
Fed, I love you man. Do whatever you want but please keep us in this beautiful soapy loop.


oh there's more
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Old 06-12-2008, 12:28 AM   #24
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have not read it all.... but hey....

More than likely if you split up.... you will find out that legally you are 'married' and she will get a bunch of 'your' stuff anyhow....

And if you have all these 'problems' with her... why the heck are you with her And if you love her... then why not marry her?

Your excuses ring hollow... I see a possible 'hurt' and that if she does anything you think you can just wash your hands.... sorry. with two kids and a probably common law marriage.... it is only you being stubborn not wanting to show the world your feeling for this lady... but then again.. .maybe you ARE showing how much you care.... YOU: Yea, she is a good lay and she can pop a couple of kids for me.... but the heck with her being my partner.... she doesn't deserve it.... yep, that is what I see...
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Old 06-12-2008, 01:36 AM   #25
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The way I see it, you made the marraige committment a long time ago when you decided to have kids and live together, but you didn't sign the paper. Common law would probably see it that way...Why not make it legal...or get out? If you 'don't want in, that means you want out. Doesn't have to be a church wedding, just go to the justice of the peace and do it. If she wants to be married, you could offer her that and see what she says...sounds like she is no longer willing to have a fence sitter as a houseguest with privileges. Are you a selfish @$$ ? Probably, since you are now obviously not willing to follow thru on your commitments.
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Old 06-12-2008, 03:31 AM   #26
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Fed, as far as you not being able to get past her sleeping with someone else, I get that. It's a big matzoh ball. You feel betrayed, but so does she when you were going to marry her and now seem to not be. When your kids someday ask you why you did not marry their mother, what will you say?
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Old 06-12-2008, 03:58 AM   #27
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So, "Judy." [I need to humanize you to "get" this.] Judy, congrats on accepting the proposal from two years ago. Are you happy? Oh, yeah, you are three months post-partem with an active three-year-old running around and now you look like an internet widow, living with the children's father who works how many jobs, how many hours?. Says he can't forgive you for something you've already "worked out." Wants to spend his "copious" free time finding himself, while two children need attention, you gotta be kidding. And you, you want a big party wedding; I hear big weddings take a lot of time to plan, why do that when two children need attention; at this point why not elope? What's that he calls you, gf instead of fiancee? What's that all about, he proposed. Does that look like love to you?

Many states do not recognize common law marriage; for example, last time I checked: California, Nevada and Alaska do not, as well as several others, my suggestion: run, run now to see a custody attorney to find out your full rights. And get some counseling. Do you have family you can stay with for a few months or years while you sort this out? Good luck, this is what we call "a tough row to hoe."
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Old 06-12-2008, 04:12 AM   #28
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IMO you should either decide to "forgive" her wholeheartedly what ever you feel she did to you or leave this relationship, take responsibility of the kids and allow yourself and her to move on with your lifes.

In the situation of today you keep yourself in a nice and comfortable setting: You believe that what she did or might have done is worse than what you did, so you have the right to treat her the way you do: not keeping promises, escaping from responsibility.
And isn't it nice for your ego to see that she wants you so much as a partner?

You should better acknowledge your share of what hapened so far. You contributed to her dealing with another guy, you contributed to your criminal offence, you contributed to the kids, you contributed to her expectation of getting married.

Get real and take a decision other than to keep the situation open as long as she is willing to compromise.
Partnership counselling might help both of you to find one.
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Old 06-12-2008, 05:05 AM   #29
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You both should ask yourselves what is best for your two children and let that be your guide. You indicated they were planned. When planning to have children, did you two consider the kind of life you wanted to provide for them? If so, I doubt these plans included living with two parents consumed with bitterness over past events and unable to make a true committment to each other.

Either work it out with counseling if you believe you have a chance at a long term committed relationship. Otherwise, go your separate ways and give the children the support they need. It would be better for the kids to be with a single parent than in a household filled with distrust and turmoil.
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Old 06-12-2008, 05:51 AM   #30
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The children are going to hear and see your fights, your unhappiness , your disrespect toward each other as they grow up if you continue to live as you have been.
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Old 06-12-2008, 05:58 AM   #31
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dude, you bought the farm 3 years ago. The wedding is merely a formality. You'll have a life long commitment with her with or without the wedding - via the kids.

So don't let the lack of a wedding be the thing that causes the split. This is not the time to wonder if someone better will "come along".
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Old 06-12-2008, 05:59 AM   #32
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Run, "Judy", run! Take the 2 kids & get away (or kick his aqq to the curb). This is not a committed man. He cares more about himself than about you or the children. Run, run for your life.

Every step of the journey is the journey.
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Old 06-12-2008, 06:03 AM   #33
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Originally Posted by REWahoo View Post
Don't marry her.
Originally Posted by REWahoo View Post
If you aren't 99% sure you want to marry her, and it certainly doesn't sound that way, you shouldn't do it. I'm from the school that says you have to listen to your gut (a combination of thinking with the heart and the other head) and if you don't, you'll likely regret it.

Bottom line, if you have to ask this forum whether or not you should marry her...
What he said!! Look past all the details you list, and that people are discussing in various posts, and read this one carefully.

Marriage is a wonderful institution and if you respect that institution, you won't marry when you are this unsure about it. Don't let yourself be "guilted" into it. There are enough meaningless marriages in the world already.
"You can never cross the ocean until you have the courage to lose sight of the shore." - - - C. Columbus
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Old 06-12-2008, 06:13 AM   #34
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Originally Posted by CuppaJoe View Post
Many states do not recognize common law marriage; for example, last time I checked: California, Nevada and Alaska do not, as well as several others
Common Law Marriage > Marriages > by States

The following states:

the District of Columbia
Rhode Island
South Carolina
New Hampshire (only for purposes of inheritance)

recognize common law marriage under various circumstances (check the above website for details).

I am just posting this since I believe singles with enough money to ER need to be fully aware of such things so that if they acquire a common law spouse, they do so with their eyes wide open.
"You can never cross the ocean until you have the courage to lose sight of the shore." - - - C. Columbus
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Old 06-12-2008, 06:31 AM   #35
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Originally Posted by thefed View Post
i love my children with all my heart and they couldnt have a better mother. they were planned.
I'm going to go a little bit contrary to what many on here our saying (surprise!) And I don't "do" drama. I think relationships with a lot of drama are just asking for problems. For one raised in the 60's & 70's I'm actually an old fashioned kind of guy. I actually had to think about your post overnight before just blabbing off with an opinion (as I usually do

This (the above) is actually a very good reason to marry the woman.

"they couldn't have a better mother" If this is true then sounds to me like most of the problems at this point are yours - not hers. 8 years is a long time to have your lives intertwined & have children together.

As to weddings & not being religious - I'm a total atheist & I had a very small church wedding - mostly to please my mom. What's the big deal to you (a guy) whether it's a preacher, a JP, a Buddhist monk, a witch doctor, or a Wiccan Priestess. We're guys. Weddings are for the women - it's something you do for her - the guy's part is just to show up with a buttoneire and a smile; say "I do"; kiss the bride; and help make it a warm, romantic, & memorable event for her.

If she is being "sane" now & you are the one with the problems, you need to work out or just get-over your problems & carry on. Perhaps engage yourself in a little self-directed Rational Emotive Therapy. (a psycho-babble way of saying taking a good logical rational look at yourself, consciously making an effort to modify your behavior, and growing up! Sorry if that sounds a little harsh, but you asked.)

Mothers are looking for security, commitment, responsibility, maturity, and leadership in a man - the security/commitment thing could be a big part of what all her nudging you toward marriage is about with her (subconcious even). It's a natural thing on her part to want that (esp. after all this time) natural evolutionary instinct even - nothing wrong with it.

If you're gonna stick around, you need to provide her (& the kids) with that commitment - let her know that you are gonna take care of her, the kids, & things through thick or thin - for better or worse. Set a good example for your children of what a good, responsible, mature, emotionally healthy man should be. You should be steady as a rock for them. Be the leader in reducing all of this destructive drama in your relationship and your lives. I predict she'll love you for it. Consider it the best gift you can ever possibly give to her & your kids.

Another thought - If you split-up & she finds another guy, don't plan on seeing, being with, interacting, etc with your kids as much as you might think - despite what the court order may say. (Kids unconciously "know" this possibility too & it makes them insecure) From what I've seen the father/child relationship nearly always deteriorates/falls-away to some degree or another when the mom hooks up with a new guy - and you won't have very much control over this situation - you'll just have to take what you can get. The only thing you'll be guaranteed as far as your kids go will be writing a child-support check every month. Anything else you get re: your kids will just be gravy.

Like I said, I'm an old fashioned guy, but I believe it's a man's place in the relationship to take the lead (without trying to dominate her) in providing that security (financial & emotional) & letting her know you're gonna be there for her & the kids no matter what - even if you're unhappy with a few things once in a while or have a little "angst" here & there. That's the man's burden, women have their own burdens just as heavy.

If you're sure her "fooling around" thing is over with & was a one-time event, I say you should strongly consider going for it. She's not just your prospective "legal" wife - she's the mother of your kids & always will be.

Otherwise you need to just cut your losses (emotional & financial) walk-away, write your child support checks, give up half your stuff (if she asks for it or sues), admit your failure, live with it.
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Old 06-12-2008, 06:44 AM   #36
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Fed, I'm with Danger Mouse on this one you need counseling to figure this out !
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Old 06-12-2008, 07:00 AM   #37
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If you're this unsure don't marry her. Any twinge of a doubt, don't marry her. What she (and you) did in the past is likely to be the future behavior.

Can you live with that? If not, think about how complicated extricating yourself from it later on will be.
I heard the call to do nothing. So I answered it.
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Old 06-12-2008, 07:27 AM   #38
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Fed, Texarkandy has some excellent points, as does Dangermouse.
You do need to "find yourself" (heck, we all do), but that does not excuse you from being an active participant in the lives of your (I'm going to call her your wife, because she's been that--remember I'm from SC, one of those famous common-law states and your butt would be 'married' here) wife and children.

She may be more religious than she says to you--if she works at a church, you bet she is certainly more religious than you, and the lack of a ceremony WILL mean something to her, whether she admits it to you or not.

Own up to your past, then let it go--go to the counseling, pay attention, and do your homework (including the prenup, if that is what you need to have to feel safe). But stand up for the promises you've made and be a honorable man and father to your family. Because that is what you are collectively, a family.

While I am not particularly religious (having been to church only to get married), I don't think having some sort of "higher power" thinking in your life would be a detriment, and might just be an obvious outgrowth of your trying to find yourself.

1) counseling
2) follow-through on what you learn in counseling, and if it is "don't get married", then, well, don't get married. But give this project the time and attention it deserves.

Good luck to you Fed, I think you are growing into a fine man, because you are asking questions and considering consequences of your actions, possibly for the first time in your life. But a crucial part of that is owning up to your past failures and being responsible for mistakes--you are the reason you are a felon. And that is okay, but own up to it. Like others have said, stop blaming her for it.
“One day your life will flash before your eyes. Make sure it's worth watching.”
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Old 06-12-2008, 07:43 AM   #39
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Originally Posted by ERD50 View Post
Ummm, then why did you have two kids with her? If you can't forgive her, then you are saying you can't have a relationship with her, whether that relationship is called 'marriage' or not.

And why is that important?

I have heard this rationale before. You are unwilling to take responsibility for your own mistakes. *You* were involved in the illegal activity - but when *you* get ripped off as a result, it wasn't your fault, oh no! - it was 'her fault' for having a big mouth! And you can't forgive her. You are a big man fed (satire). geez. Grow up.

Or maybe she does?

Sorry fed, but from what you say, it sounds like you still are all those things.

I can understand cold feet, but you have two kids - you should have listened to your cold feet before you made that commitment.

Take it to Dr Phil.

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What he/she said. (Just repeating it so you get another shot at it.)
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Old 06-12-2008, 07:53 AM   #40
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You have my sympathy for having to deal with some very difficult decisions (in addition to the three-way switch thing). Hope you find a good solution.

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