When you decide to partner with someone who has a child, you must accept their child into your life along with the new partner.
However, that doesn’t mean you must take over as the primary caretaker for the kid.
One woman came to Reddit after finding herself with homemaking duties for her boyfriend’s child.
Tasks Were More Equal
The Original Poster (OP) shared that they split tasks more equally when they first moved in together about four years ago. His son stayed with them every other week per the custody agreement, and her partner took on the bulk of childrearing duties.
She shared that the boy’s mom didn’t like her, but as she’s now in jail (for an undisclosed reason), they care for the child full-time.
Boyfriend’s New Projects
Things were fine at first. OP stepped up and helped her boyfriend with child-rearing, and they had close to a 50/50 split on household duties.
However, the boyfriend took on some additional projects at work and began working longer hours. The bulk of the childcare and domestic duties fell to OP.
“I’ve been doing all the chores and childcare since then. I cook, clean, get his son ready in the morning, and drop him off at daycare,” she shared.
She Tells Boyfriend to Step Up
Fed up with the burden, OP told her boyfriend she was done being the primary caretaker for his child.
“I told him last Friday that from Monday on, I won’t be doing the childcare anymore,” she stated.
He Lashes Out
The boyfriend, shocked that his caretaking appliance would dare have problems with the arrangement, lashed out in anger.
First, he begged. He said they were a team and needed her support, telling OP to be patient.
OP stood firm.
“I replied, saying that this is his son and he needed to do the majority of the childcare.”
He Brings the Boy Into It
What should have been a discussion between two adults about the division of household labor morphed into a cesspool of toxic manipulation when OP’s boyfriend decided to bring his son into the argument.
“He then went into the other room, got his son, and told his son that, “Mommy says she doesn’t want to take care of you anymore” while pointing at me,” OP shared.
She said she was not the boy’s mother, and the mother doesn’t even like her, but that only resulted in more tears from the young child.
A guilt-ridden OP comforted the boy – she never meant to hurt him or involve him in the argument. She only wanted his father to step up and provide more care.
Tension at Home
OP reported that her boyfriend stepped up and took over most of the childcare duties, but he refuses to speak to her.
She doesn’t think she’s wrong, as he’s the parent, and the mom specifically said she doesn’t want OP involved. However, OP’s sister said she was wrong, and now OP wonders if she should have sucked it up.
The Manipulation is the Worst Part
Many Redditors pointed to the boyfriend’s horrible decision to bring his son into the argument and tell the boy OP didn’t want to care for him.
“How cruel can you be, to take your [anger out] at your partner at a child? Leave him.” said one user.
The Childcare Issue
Despite that toxic behavior, OP wasn’t wrong to discuss childcare.
Far too many men look for a new girlfriend to care for their children because they don’t want to do the work. It’s suspicious that the boyfriend suddenly had so many work projects just a few months after gaining full custody.
“He’s dumped all childcare and house work on you for his projects, and you didn’t agree to that,” said one user. “Probably best to move out.”
OP Limiting Earnings
OP added an edit to her post stating that she’s cut hours at her own job to handle the extra burden at home.
Users saw this as a giant red flag.
“OP has reduced her earning potential to care for this child, just so bf could move ahead in his career. She’s given up a lot, and he doesn’t even care, he doesn’t see this as a sacrifice,” said one user.
It seems clear the OP”s boyfriend sees her as a domestic appliance. Her job is to serve him and the child, despite her wishes. They aren’t even married, so she will get nothing for her sacrifices.
OP needs to look out for herself because her partner sure isn’t looking out for her. He’s using her for free child care, and he flipped out when she decided she had enough.
It’s time to go, OP.