I Hate The Guy My Mom Is Dating
It sounds like you have two concerns about your mother dating this guy: the first being that you do not feel he is treating her well in terms of being unfaithful to her and the second being that you feel you are losing out on time with her because of her involvement with this man. TeenHealthFX can appreciate that you are struggling with this issue as it can be a difficult adjustment to have a parent dating even under the best of circumstances.
FX recommends that you find a time when you can sit down with your mother in private and without interruption so that you can explain to her how you are feeling. FX thinks that in having this conversation with your mother it is important for you to first understand that your mother has her role as a mom, but that doesn’t mean there is nothing else to her. It is healthy for people to have a balance between time for themselves, time with their families and couple time with significant others. FX thinks your conversation with her will be more productive if you are able to acknowledge that you can appreciate that she would want to have a romantic relationship in her life in addition to the other roles and relationships she has. You can start by clarifying this understanding to her. Then you can say that even though you can appreciate that this part of her life is important to her, that you have some concerns. Let your mother know that you feel you are losing out on quality time with one another and ask her if she would be willing for the two of you to come up with some ways in which you can have some special time with one another on a more regular basis. Once you have worked out that part, then you can let your mother know that you are concerned about her choice to be with a man who is unfaithful to her. You can say something like, “I care about you and think you are a great person – so it is upsetting to me to see you put up with someone who doesn’t treat you in a loving way. If I was dating someone who was cheating on me I’m sure it would upset you because you care about me and would think I deserve more. And I can’t help but to feel the same way about you. It hurts me to see someone I love tolerate being treated this way.”
If in trying to talk to your mother about these issues you find that the conversation is not productive, our next recommendation is to ask your mother if she would be willing to go to a family therapist together where you could discuss your concerns. If your mother is not willing to do this, FX recommends you reach out to a trusted adult to get some guidance and support on how to deal with this situation. You could speak to a school counselor or ask your mother if you could meet with a private therapist on your own, such as a clinical social worker or clinical psychologist.
FX obviously cannot know what your mother is going through in terms of why she is putting more energy into her dating relationship than her relationship with you and why she would be willing to put up with someone cheating on her. But we do want to stress to you that her behavior and decisions are not any kind of negative reflection on who you are a person. Sometimes children and teens can come to believe that they are not likeable or lovable if their parents are not spending enough quality time with them. However, it is important to remember that is not the case. And while it might feel hurtful not to have enough time with a parent, again, it is not a negative statement about that child or teen.
FX also wants to remind you that you are your own person and can lead your life in whatever way works for you – your life doesn’t have to replicate your mother’s. So if she, for whatever reason, is okay about being in a relationship where someone is not able to be faithful to her, that doesn’t mean that is all you can hope for or expect. If you feel that behavior in a significant other is not okay, then make sure that you do not tolerate it in your own dating relationships.
If you live in northern New Jersey and need help finding a therapist you can call the Access Center from Atlantic Behavioral Health at 888-247-1400. Outside of this area you can log onto the US Department of Health and Human Services Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website for referrals in your area. You can also contact your insurance company to get a list of in-network mental health providers or check with your school social worker or psychologist to get a list of referrals in your area.