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Mommy's New Boyfriend

Question:

I’ve been divorced about 1 and 1/2 years. The ex just had her boyfriend move in. I have two children ages 5 and 9. I have summer custody, and will only let her see them every other weekend, unlike last summer. The boyfriend moved partly in about two weeks ago. What are the effects of this on the children, and was I wrong to keep the kids away from this as much as possible?

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  • ‘Anne’ is the pseudonym for the individual who writes this relationship advice column.
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Answer:

What are your true motives for keeping the children away from their mother? How are you handling this new situation? Are you are attempting to shelter your children because of the way you feel about the new boyfriend? Or do you feel that the children are not being well taken care of? Be honest with yourself, and then ask yourself if this is a strong enough reason to keep the children away from their mother. As long as the two of them are good to your children, I see no reason for keeping them from their mother. If it is the situation that you disagree with, you can let the children know this without giving them the added stress of being fought over. Make sure you’re not punishing your children for negative feelings you may be experiencing. Many couples are now living together before they are married. Perhaps your ex is being a little extra cautious before she jumps into another marriage… Yes, keeping the children from their mother could negatively affect them. I suggest letting the children decide if they want to see their mother. If the situation is distressing to them, then they will probably choose not to visit her as often. If they do still want to see her, try to trust that your ex-wife will take good care of her children, and don’t cause any more family stress than is necessary. Hope things work out, – Anne

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