Anonymous writes, “I’ve recently had some devastating news about my partner saying inappropriate things to my 26 year old daughter (we are both 58)…
She is a single mum and has relied on us for support the last few years, she doesn’t ask for money or anything, but needs our help while she builds her life back after an abusive relationship and she recovers from the resulting anxiety. We have been there for her during the pregnancy and now the little boy is three, I love my grandson and daughter very much.
Since I confronted my partner (of 10 years now), after my daughter approached me, he admits he has probably been out of line (as a step dad) and says he thought it was all in playful banter and she always starts the joking and teasing, nothing too bad just stirring him.
He has made sure I was never around when he said these things. I am p*ssed off with him to say the least. However, we are tied up financially in a business, he says he never meant any harm (not making excuses for him) and that he loves me very much (hmmmm?).
My daughter came to live with us when she was pregnant, mentally unwell after a bad relationship and needing a place to live for a while, have the baby and get back on her feet. She has been doing great, moved into a nearby place of their own about a year ago, we are all close and see each other most days. Apparently the inappropriate jokes and banter didn’t start until recent months. She hoped he’d stop and so tried to ignore him, yet still making jokes herself, but keeping it clean. We, daughter, partner and myself are working through it. He’s apologized and promises never to do it again, etc.
I’m not certain of the future of our relationship as it’s early days and I’m still very angry, this type of thing is not on. But we are together in the business for the time being. I’ve felt really miserable but I am trying to work through it. I haven’t been able to hide my feelings that well (I feel shaky & sick inside) and we have had a couple of dinners at Mum and Dad’s where I try to pretend nothings wrong, I just don’t want to worry them, but it’s soooo hard to be cheerful. He pulls it off so well and is the life of the party, whilst I’m finding it hard to get into the conversation. We live in a small town and I can’t talk to anyone about it, without the whole town knowing. I want to tell my my Mum. However she’s the type to not want to hear bad news. Never talks about feelings. Never gives cuddles. Keeping a stiff upper lip at all times. Should I tell my Mum and risk upsetting her or is off-loading my burden a selfish thing to do?”