Gays With Kids expert James Guay tackles another tough question from our community, this time contributed anonymously:
“I am reaching out in this way because I am too embarrassed and ashamed to discuss this with family or friends. Before we met, my husband and I both wanted children. I knew it would be difficult, which is why I did not opt to become a single dad. We dated, we married, and we got a child through the foster system. As of last June, he became ours.
My husband and I both work typical 9 to 5 jobs. He spends a lot of time away from home, like 3 to 5 evenings a week. I feel like a single parent. My husband has told me many times how I “forced” him to get a child. And several days ago my husband told me he “tried to love” our son (meaning he does not love him), and that our son had sucked “all the joy from our lives.”
While I do not want a separation or divorce, I do want a healthy environment for my son even more. The only solution I see at this point is for my son and I to move out and begin fresh, leaving my husband to pursue his life in a carefree, childless, single guy manner. (We would leave the home because my husband bought the house we live in a couple of years before we met and he regularly reminds me “this is my house.”)
As I type this, I am writing as dispassionately as possible, yet when I read my own words, it seems so much worse than in my head. Any advice you have to offer is appreciated.”
James Guay responds and lists four different options for this gay dad to consider:
- Consider couples or family therapy:
It’s about doing due diligence and trying that one last ditch effort to resolve the situation.
- Single parenting has its benefits
Sometimes people find that being a single parent is better than co-parenting when your partner isn’t as involved as you want them to be. They can potentially give you a few hours off, a weekend off, and you can really show up for your child in ways you might not be able to under the current circumstances.
- What have you learned that you can apply moving forward?
It’s important to recognize if there is anything different you could’ve done. Were there signs along the way that your partner wasn’t willing to be the 24 / 7 parent that you needed them to be.
- You are not alone!
There are so many single parents that did not sign up to be that, and that do perfectly well. They are happy, and healthy; busy, but are wonderful parents and find it incredibly rewarding.
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