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leaving a child behind :(

leaving a child behind :(

Old Oct 23rd 2019, 2:02 am
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Unhappy leaving a child behind :(

Please don't judge me, I have spent hours deliberating this situation and trying to think of how to work around everything. So here goes:

I met my boyfriend who lives in America over 2 years ago, I have been to visit him twice and the dream would be to eventually move in together, We want to be together. We have talked about marriage and me moving to the USA as I really don't think he would get along with the UK climate (He lived here for a year or two with his father when he was a child as his father was in the forces and he always says he remembers England as being cold and grey, he is based in Texas so you can imagine how he is used to warm weather and space..England is somewhat claustrophobic and I can see it myself having lived in the UK all my life and visited the USA, the difference in lifestyle is vast. Not to mention I dont earn enough to sponsor him unlike USA where you can have other people help with that.)

The one and only thing is that I have a son of only 5 years old (soon to be 6) and this is with a partner I was with for most of my life. All my life with my ex was miserable, always in some sort of debt, and even after separating we were forced to live together due to financial issues (separate rooms) and this worked out somewhat ok, for our son at least, he had both his parents there. I am now at the age of 34, at last out of financial ties with the ex, and I just want to finally think of how I want to live the rest of my life for once..that may sound selfish? perhaps. But I was with that ex from the age of 17, I never had my own life and I feel like time is running out to do the things I want to do.

Of course, I want to be there for my son. I would love to take him with me, but my ex says that he really would not let me, our son is all he has, he has no other romantic interests since we split. I can understand his point of view. Not to mention our son is very well settled in his school, thriving, stable, and they are very good at dealing with his medical issue of constipation which sometimes means he has accidents still..I feel kids at a new school, especially in a different country might make him a target for bullying because of this, and he has support from my mother who adores him and I don't think she would forgive me for taking him away. She does however somewhat sympathise with the fact she sees me so unhappy here in the UK, and notes how I seem relaxed and actually happy in the USA, I have 'my sparkle' back. She does also say that I should wait until he is a little older before moving. But I am just not sure at what age is the right age to leave? surely any age is going to be hard at first. I would be able to video chat every day, send letters and of course I would intend to visit for holidays such as Christmas. As much as whatever job out there I get would allow. The guilt eats at me, I don't want to be a bad mother and 'abandon' my son, even though I would always be there for him and visiting, and still able to manage contact with his school and keep up with his progress as they have an app which is very interactive. Also as he grew older he would be able to visit me too.

I guess I just need some advice, I am not getting any younger, and yet my son only grows up once. I feel trapped between a rock and a hard place.

Last edited by Becki62; Oct 23rd 2019 at 2:10 am.
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Old Oct 23rd 2019, 2:09 am
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Default Re: leaving a child behind :(

Hi Becki. The best advice I can give you is to talk this through with a good counsellor, who will be able to help you clarify your thoughts. I mean this in a very supportive way, asking complete strangers on a public forum for input into something so deeply personal and individual to you, something that you're already feeling very vulnerable about, is not a good idea.
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Old Oct 23rd 2019, 2:17 am
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Default Re: leaving a child behind :(

My father left to work in a foreign country when I was 6 years old. 36 years later I still resent him for that decision.

Of course you should want happiness; however, do you really think your son would be happier without you around?

Without wishing to be unkind, you know deep down what the right answer is and you're looking for someone to tell you that your proposal is ok.

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Old Oct 23rd 2019, 2:41 am
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Default Re: leaving a child behind :(

Sounds as if you are doing most of the heavy lifting in this new relationship, Becki. I suggest that your friend come to visit you and meet your son. The UK may not be as grey as he remembers. After that, you may find yourself better able to make a decision. But I think your friend at least owes it to you to make a visit, when you are thinking of giving up so much for him.
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Old Oct 23rd 2019, 2:46 am
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Default Re: leaving a child behind :(

Originally Posted by Nutmegger View Post
Sounds as if you are doing most of the heavy lifting in this new relationship, Becki. I suggest that your friend come to visit you and meet your son. The UK may not be as grey as he remembers. After that, you may find yourself better able to make a decision. But I think your friend at least owes it to you to make a visit, when you are thinking of giving up so much for him.
I agree. We spent a month in the UK and found the weather to be just fine. We live in Australia, so used to warm and sunny.

OP, could you find a second job to make the necessary money to sponsor? Could your new man get a work sponsored visa? Even if he came to stay for a couple of months to get to know your son and get to know you better.
I know what I would do but really it's not my decision to make.
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Old Oct 23rd 2019, 8:31 am
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Default Re: leaving a child behind :(

ditching your son for a man you have met twice????


sorry your not going to get a yes from me.

the grass always looks greener on the other side........

i don't understand why the potential new man would not be willing to at least try visiting the uk?

and i think you would be very surprised at how well a 5'6 year old would adapt to change.
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Old Oct 23rd 2019, 9:17 am
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Default Re: leaving a child behind :(

If the new man had his own children in the US or some other vital reason for not moving to the UK then fair enough. But if his only reason for you moving to the US and leaving your child behind is because the skies are grey, then personally that would ring alarm bells with me. Any man that expected me to even think about doing that would only see my back as I walked away.

You may be in a better mood in the US but that's because you're on holiday, free of obligations and having a great time. When it's normal daily life, and you're dealing with the grief of being thousands of miles away from your child, I bet that 'sparkle' soon dims.

As a mother of two kids, the eldest of whom is about to turn 15, I'm already dreading the day they go off to uni or leave home. I can't imagine voluntarily leaving them and not being involved in their daily life, ever.

And just to add, I'm not judging you at all. I am however, judging your boyfriend who is seemingly happy for you to give up your child but isn't happy to give up his blue skies.

Last edited by christmasoompa; Oct 23rd 2019 at 9:31 am.
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Old Oct 23rd 2019, 10:36 am
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Default Re: leaving a child behind :(

I can understand your frustrations and anxieties. Finding love after a horrible relationship can be the sunlight you need RIGHT NOW and that is what you are doing, you are only thinking of RIGHT NOW!
What about the future? What about when your son is older and he wants nothing to do with you because you chose a man over him? What if you and this guy in America break up, then what? Will you come back to the UK and resume life as normal? How will your son feel about that?
Also, a man who really loves you would never make you choose between him and your son... Does he have children? Would he leave them to be with you? Probably not. Your son should be your priority.

though I have offered my advice, I really think you need to speak to someone professionally about this. To me, it seems more deep rooted that just leaving your child behind. You were in a relationship since 17 (you hardly knew yourself then) and you were with him through your early adult years and you somehow molded who you are into your ex and you lost yourself (or rather, you never really discovered who you are and what you want with your life). And now that this American guy has shown you a different kind of love (previous from your ex), you want it because it 'feels' right and it feels like something you deserve.
I would suggest talking to someone professionally - counselling or psychotherapy for a few months before making the decision.

All the best!
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Old Oct 23rd 2019, 11:27 am
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Default Re: leaving a child behind :(

No one should live their live miserable - but doing what you are thinking about doing would be a monumental decision that will stay with you for the rest of your life.

I don't think you should be making this decision anytime soon - even knowing what the laws are with respect to visas to live in the US.

How often does your ex see his son? Would you be able to come to some arrangement about paying for flights if you did in fact make the move with your child? What is the US based boyfriends situation with children? Is there really a reason for them not to move beyond 'they think it's cold and grey'?

I agree that speaking to a Councillor is a good idea here, just to clarify your thoughts, but I for one cannot imagine asking my girlfriend to give up her children for me.
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Old Oct 23rd 2019, 2:14 pm
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Default Re: leaving a child behind :(

Becki, I may have missed it in the original post, but who does your son actually live with at present?
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Old Oct 23rd 2019, 2:47 pm
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Default Re: leaving a child behind :(

It’s a big no from me, please don’t put a man before your child it never works out, how will you feel if indeed the relationship goes the distance with this man when your son gets older and wishes nothing to do with you, you will most probably get resentment and anger from your son.
This man sounds very shallow and superficial doesn’t like the grey skies in the U.K. what a poor excuse I would be running for the hills if a man came across in that way.
I think you need to think long and hard where and with who your future lies. You’ll never get back those years you will have lost with your son, what happens if the relationship with the new man falters then what. Just my opinion.
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Old Oct 23rd 2019, 3:12 pm
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Default Re: leaving a child behind :(

It's a simple choice of boyfriend or son, if you choose boyfriend your son will remember it, if you choose son your boyfriend will move on. Video chatting every day really isn't practical due to the time differences and school/work schedules. Visits will be few and far between due to both cost and the fact you won't get much time off work in the US. Plenty of people do what you're suggesting, just don't expect to win any Mum of the year awards, especially if your ex gets a new woman in his life.
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Old Oct 23rd 2019, 3:17 pm
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Default Re: leaving a child behind :(

I'm not going to judge you, your former partner nor your current love interest. Society doesn't think poorly of a father who leaves a relationship and leaves his children behind in the sole custody of their mother. Society, however, thinks poorly of a mother who does just that. So your current love interest is not willing to move to the UK. Honestly, I can't see that that makes him sallow or selfish. He has the right to say where he wishes to live. Now, I have some questions for you.

1. Since you are apparently still co-habituating with your former partner, your son gets to see both of you daily. Can you find a place of your own so that you can remove your son from daily contact with his father? You need to know if your son can handle the separation from his father and this is one way to do it.

2. Is your FP able to financially support his son if you were to leave him in his custody? Is he a hands on parent?

3. What would you do if you found love in the UK far from where you currently live? Would you give sole custody to your FP?

4. Does you CLI have children of his own?

5. Is he willing to take on the responsibility of a child?

6. Is he currently financially stable and can provide for you both and offer you both healthcare insurance?

7. Have you thought of petitioning the courts for sole custody of your son and the right to remove him from the UK?

8. Can you visit the US for 80 days to live with the CLI and see if you are really compatible? This will also give your FP the opportunity to see if he can cope being a single parent and your son the opportunity to be without his mom.

Love is grand and exciting and the novelty of moving to a foreign country can be thrilling. However, it all wears off quickly. You don't know if you would like living here. You don't know if you would like not having son with you.

You need to find your answers within yourself. Good luck.
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Old Oct 23rd 2019, 6:22 pm
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Default Re: leaving a child behind :(

Originally Posted by christmasoompa View Post
But if his only reason for you moving to the US and leaving your child behind is because the skies are grey, then personally that would ring alarm bells with me.
Putting aside the issue of the child, I can tell you from personal experience just how utterly miserable the weather in the UK used to make me.

Until I moved to the US I never knew that it was possible to actually go through an autumn or a winter without being horribly depressed, and it's one of the major reasons why I don't think I could ever move back to the UK - I absolutely refuse to subject myself to that level of misery ever again.

I'm actually sympathetic to the boyfriend here, and I'd be 100% on his side if it wasn't for the fact that there's a child involved.
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Old Oct 23rd 2019, 9:29 pm
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Default Re: leaving a child behind :(

It would seem very unlikely a Court would allow the child to emigrate given these circumstances.
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