Am I being petty?

jupiterjNovember 11, 2006

I recently got engaged, my fiance has been divored for a year and a half. His ex-wife still has a substancial amount of her things here. I asked my fiance to ask her if we could drop off the stuff for her or if he could ask her to come pick the things up but he said no because he says he doesn't want to make her mad. Would this bother anyone else or am I just being petty?

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What type of things are you talking about...bras and panties, boxes of books, baby pictures, a blender? Why the heck wouldn't she have taken her stuff already (storage issues?)! Are you planning on moving in with him when you get married? Are their kids involved who could be using the stuff?

If you're getting married soon (and, not, like in 3 years), then I see no reason why he shouldn't call her and ask her to get her stuff. You're not being petty, but I'd be more concerned with why exactly he is afraid to call her. Is she that crazy, or could he still have feelings for her? I'm guessing he's just afraid of her, but why?

    Bookmark   November 12, 2006 at 12:23AM
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Good questions Carla.
OP - What are your motivations? Do you want the 'reminders' gone? The connection severed? Or do you want more space for your stuff?

What about packing her things neatly into boxes and stacking the boxes in a corner to start. Then ask him again to call her and offer to either store the stuff in the garage or deliver it. He can even call when she's not home and leave a polite message stating what he'll be doing with her stuff.

If he's too much of a wimp to call her about her stuff, then he's too much of a wimp to make a good husband.
Sorry to be so blunt, but think about it...

    Bookmark   November 12, 2006 at 12:25PM
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Its not being petty.

I think future hubbie should see your side of things, and stop being a wimp (Ref Sweeby !)

Just look at the problem from a practicle perspective. You dont want someone elses "stuff" want it are you going to achieve that ?

Is it such a good footing to start off your married life ? If you future husband cannot deal with THIS situation, I would wonder about more curly situations.

Sorry to be blunt, as well.


    Bookmark   November 13, 2006 at 1:08AM
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Not petty. Ex-wife's stuff has to go. Who cares if she gets mad? She and your husband are both being unreasonable. If she'll take it, fine. If not, move it all to a public storage facility, pay for one month and give her the key.

    Bookmark   November 13, 2006 at 1:47PM
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I don't think that refusing to act as a free storage facility is petty. Is someone else suggesting you are being petty? How long has this someone been such a wuss?

    Bookmark   November 13, 2006 at 9:21PM
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Well...I think I would first look through and see if there was something that I could the blender mentioned before. If it's memorabilia and personal would be in the attic tomorrow.
Linda C

    Bookmark   November 15, 2006 at 11:42PM
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Thank you all for responding. First of all it's a substancial amount of stuff clothes,appliances,sewing machine,furniture,etc. Originally it was a storage issue she had an apartment and asked if he would mind keeping it there till she closed on her house I was perfectly fine with that, but she closed on the house and moved in 4 months ago. I really just wanted to start organizing things the way I want them, not so much severing ties. He is the one saying I am just being petty and that it's just stuff and I say if it's just stuff why not a phone call asking politely like sweeby stated. But he still refuses. Thanks guys for responding I feel better knowing that you don't think it's petty either.

    Bookmark   November 17, 2006 at 5:07PM
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After discussing it further I finally got to the truth, he told me the real reason that he doesn't press the issue. His ex in the past has caused scenes in front of the children many times, yelling and screaming in front of them. He said he doesn't want his kids to be subjected to her tirade if he presses, this I understand. I still don't like it but I do understand it.

    Bookmark   November 19, 2006 at 8:06AM
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Perhaps you could be brave, and say to her "how about I help you move the articles to your place, you must need your things". That way you could build up some sort of civilized relationship with her and look good in the process, because you are being helpful ! Just a thought. Maybe you dont want to be THAT helpful.

Good luck with it all.

    Bookmark   November 20, 2006 at 2:09AM
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When I first started dating my long-term boyfriend, he still had a ton of his ex-wife's things at his place, like obscure toiletries and some weird japanese stuff.

After about three months of dating him, I threw her stuff out...including mail she was still receiving there. Three month is long enough for you to change your address, dear.

Five years down the line, he still has no clue I threw her stuff out.

    Bookmark   November 21, 2006 at 6:55PM
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You're GF, not wife, and you're tossing this stuff out? If I was your BF, I'd toss you out instantly. None of this is your business.

Of course I don't know the circumstances of your particular relationship. However, your description of events would be a deal-breaker for me upon discovery.

Every good wish to you both.

    Bookmark   November 21, 2006 at 7:13PM
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Yes, I tossed her stuff out. Yes, the wife that used him for a green card, cheated on him, and immediately got pregnant by her boss right after they separated.

Yes, I tossed her stuff out because he probably didn't even know it was there. None of my business? I might add I'm the girlfriend who's known him as a good friend since we were 12. We are now 34.

Deal breaker upon discovery? Gimme a break. I think you're the one who need the good wishes.

    Bookmark   November 21, 2006 at 11:37PM
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very good going patisgirl! :) I'd do it to.
and beside everything , that's our place, too. so, You are supposed to decide what it's in there one what it's not.
and about jupiterj, I think you should see this situation like something that you will keep seen for a long time if you don;t do anything about it! so,you should decide how you want the thing to handle in your house.
if he is scared of his ex, ask him is he is going to be scared for ever? and if he will manage everything the same way as he have been doing so far with his ex. And them, you decide if you agree/like his answer and get prepared for what is coming to you.
I have being married for 5 years so far, and believe me, things do NOT get better if you let them go and don't try to solve them on time. we are both from different cultures and I think it's much more hard for us to agree on anything. and I think there is always one that is more tolerant than the other. but it's not good to abuse of the other and it's good to set up date lines and some rules, like your feelings are more important than what his ex wife thinks.
I'm young and have kids, too. and he can try to take her stuff back to her without involving their kids. like sending the kids with their grandparents for a weekend, when he is read to deal thing his ex. Ask her to pick up her things, or he can pack everything, ship them by him self and drop them of in from of her new house :) how do you like my master plan?

    Bookmark   November 22, 2006 at 12:08PM
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Suggest to your boyfriend that he pack her things up neatly. Ship them to her UPS or FedEx, signature required. This way noone can be accused of leaving her things where they might get stolen or damaged. Since the items will arrive at her house, she won't be able to "cause a scene in front of the children" (or is that just a poor excuse on your boyfriends part?). If your boyfriend can't/won't/doesn't "get it" and refuses to agree with any reasonable suggestions, I would tell him to call you when he reaches in his pants and finds what he was born with.

    Bookmark   November 27, 2006 at 9:26AM
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sounds flimsy, like an excuse rather than a reason.

You might want to take a step back & get a fresh perspective on this, uncolored by the tendency to take what our loved ones say at face value.

Would any man put up with that kind of nonsense from anybody, let alone an ex?

It would have been very easy for him to have called her *immediately* after she moved into her new home & said, "I've got the rental truck loaded, I'm on my over with all your things."

Has he never mentioned screaming fits before?

Why are the children even a factor (surely there are times when they are at daycare, with their grandmother, etc)?

There's gotta be a reason that so much of her stuff stays at his house.

    Bookmark   December 16, 2006 at 7:41PM
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It sounds to me as if he likes her things near him, and she likes her things with him. It appears that they are both still keeping one foot in the door. That neither wants it firmly shut.

If I were in your shoes, I would wait a long time before setting a wedding date, and see what this guy is made of. Because if this is how he is going to stand up for you, then you will be sorely disappointed in him. If he is going to wimp out on the issues that involve his children and ex-wife...of which there will be many, you will find yourself wishing that you had not jumped so quickly into such a marriage. I imagine that you will be made out to be the bad guy more often than you like. Tell him that when your feelings matter more than his ex's...and that he is willing to stand up for you with the strength of a man...and that you are able to see over a long period of time that he is actually able to do this...only then will you marry him.
But if he lives in fear of upsetting his ex...and catering to her wishes and whims, for fear of her being upset...then he should not be marrying anybody. He will disappoint them.
A councelor should be able to help him find his voice and set bounderies with his that he is not so fearful of setting her off. Then he will be a man ready for marriage.

    Bookmark   December 17, 2006 at 7:18AM
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Its hard to sympathize or give good advice without knowing a few answers. Did you move in with him or vice versa? How old are you? Do you have children?
If you are an attractive young woman without children I would suggest that you think a long time before getting involved with somebody that is paying child support, may have visitation or custody issues, etc. Do you really know why they got a divorce? when there are children it usually isn't a simple thing. Her being a screaming meemie is sometimes an effect not a cause. If he was so busy catering to her whims when they were married they still would be.
If he has only been divorced a year and a half and you are engaged and living together thats pretty fast. Whats the rush? I have seen couples divorce and remarry each other. But if often can take a while for couples to really become separate people even after a divorce.

    Bookmark   December 18, 2006 at 9:08PM
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Thank you everyone for your input.
bnicebkind I think you are right and gave me a different perspective, I think that neither one of them want to completely close the door. He was going to counseling when she was going but strangely after she stopped going so did he. He has asked me to be patient with him as he feels he falls back into old behavior patterns around her. I told him last night that I would like to still stay committed to him but think it may be for the best to get my own apartment.When he asked me to move in I knew it was too soon in the back of my mind but didn't listen. I am 35 he is 46 and I don't have any children. Since I posted this she has called saying that she is coming out to get the rest of her things then never shows then she said it will be out by X-mas but I doubt it. At the very beginning the kids were all excited about coming over and I know really had a good time but as soon as we got engaged she started being very nasty and in turn I think it confused the kids who before that time would run in and be so talkative, happy etc. now I hear things like I don't like you anymore cuz momma don't to which I reply well I still like you and usually after an hour he's comes up and talks/wants to play, or they'll say oh you should of heard momma talking about you the other day she was so mad and called you stupid and I said oh well that's to bad cuz I think your moms really nice. I always go out one of the three nights they are with us so that they still have alone time with dad, he disagrees but I think it is important for them. Yet now his daughter rarely comes over she's the oldest and the ex is saying it's because she hates me. These poor kids I know are made to feel bad if they go home to her and talk about the good time they had it sickens me that a mother could be so cruel to put their children through so much psychological turmoil. So I am also thinking of them as well as myself in deciding that moving out is for the best. She openly screams at my fiance and myself in front of the kids saying nasty things/adult things that these kids shouldn't have to be exposed to. He never wants to upset her but when it comes to your childrens best interests and psychological well being I think he should stand up for them, I don't know how or what exactly should be done or if it would even do anything but I think something should be done but he remains constant with the I can't change how she is,etc etc. I just feel it would be best for those kids if I left cuz I feel that that would stop her and I feel that they are both still hanging on but neither would ever admit it. When she calls on the phone and starts a fight I always hear him say "I didn't ask for the divorce." and he always tells me how much he hates her which I always say she will always be the mother of your children don't say that. He is a very good father but I think he needs to stand up for himself and them. I just can't stand by and watch this anymore I would love to have my own child someday but don't feel that this would be a healthy situation at this time, maybe things will work out better with me gone.

    Bookmark   December 19, 2006 at 5:33AM
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I think many of us could have guessed your story. Sadly, you wrote a lot, but didn't say many positive things about your finance. Makes me wonder if you even really love him. There's too many issues going on to stick with a man that you're not absolutely crazy about. Plus, it doesn't really sound like he's all that crazy about you either, and I would bet you deserve a lot better (meaning someone that does give you his whole heart).

I'm guessing maybe you hear your clock ticking and really want to get married and have a child. Just make sure you marry the right guy.

    Bookmark   December 19, 2006 at 10:29AM
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Yes, I agree with Carla.

The situation is complicated, the family has to resolve the problems before the parents can move on.

Really, do you want to be part of this turmoil ?

It isn't fair on you.

I think you are brave, making the decision to move out, you could still meet up with him, do things together.

You will know when the time is right to marry this man, if ever.

All the best to you, you seem like a lovely girl.


    Bookmark   December 20, 2006 at 1:33AM
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Thanks popi and Carla.
I was really upset when I posted and realize that I didn't say alot of positive things about him and that was wrong of me. He really truly is a wonderful man, thoughtful, loving, funny and I think he really tries hard to do the right things. I didn't mean to not put him in a positive light, because deep down I really am hopelessly in love with this man and his kids. I don't want to leave but I don't want him or the kids to have to go through any suffering because of me being in the picture. Hope you both have a wonderful holiday and god bless.

    Bookmark   December 20, 2006 at 2:49AM
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You know, things always get better, remember that.

Sometimes when we are miserable, and its all hopeless, and we basically panic, because we can't see anything getting better.....find the strength to say to yourself "things always get better".

Try it out...

    Bookmark   December 21, 2006 at 1:48AM
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"You know, things always get better, remember that."

Noooo, sometimes they don't get better.

    Bookmark   December 21, 2006 at 8:31PM
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After further thought, please let me clarify my last post.

Sometimes when we want the problem(s) to disappear and for it all to be better, it isn't and it can become a losing battle.

    Bookmark   December 22, 2006 at 6:57AM
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Were you in the picture before the divorce?

If the ex is the same age as your fiance, she may be feeling a bit put out that her ex is with someone 10 years younger?

I would pack the ex's things in boxes with the help of my fiance. Tell him you will be taking them over to her house and going to have a little chat.

Take them over to her new home and have a little chat with the ex. Make sure its when the kids aren't home, perhaps the nite they spend dad time. Call her and say, hello Jane, I am going by your house and I have a few things I need to drop off. When you get there, help her carry them and have a chat regarding the harm in bad-mouthing you to the kids, that you are well-intentioned and love her kids. Explain that the more people in a child's life who love them, the better. Can't we all just make an effort to get along. Everyone will be happier in the long run. If you are going to be the new wife, you are going to have to all get along for the sake of the kids. Be the bigger person.

In the event fiance is not on board with packing the things up, I suggest you not only re-think the living arrangement, but the nuptials as well.

Also, sounds like fiance needs to have a sit down with ex regarding poisoning the children against you and a sit down with the children about it as well. There is nothing to be gained by all of this negativity.

Best of luck to you!

    Bookmark   December 26, 2006 at 6:46PM
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