Cultural Differences? please help

Reply Mon 7 Jun, 2010 12:07 pm

I'd like to say that this is my first time posting a personal problem on the internet but I feel that the members of this forum might be able to give me some different insight. Every family member or friend that I have spoken to is completely against my relationship.

The problem is that my boyfriend of 1.5 years (cuban, living 3 years in canada) still has a son in Cuba. Originally the question came up a while ago when he asked me if I would mind if he married (just papers) his ex wife to bring the child and her to Canada. Seeing how we were just starting out and I had intentions of leaving the country for a year (so didnt think we would even last) I didnt feel I had the right to be against anything, so I said I wouldnt mind.

Now so it happened that our relationship got more serious and I didnt end up leaving Canada. In December we both went to Cuba to visit his family. What I didnt expect was that his ex wife would beinvolved in pretty much everything there. The idea of leaving the son and leaving herself, didnt seem to exist. The son was there-she was there. We went out with his son one day to a cafe, 5 min later she showed up and sat with us.
Now this seemed completely natural and normal in Cuba, everything seemed to me sort of just mixed in, though I cant say I found it pleasant. So this lack of barriers I guess just completely threw me off and I told him I couldnt handle the idea of their marriage. He didnt do anything about the papers and just seemed to leave it alone. (just a note they are separated 6 years, he was married after her, dont think feelings on his part exist)

Now bac khere in Canada I feel like its a ticking time bomb because I know he still has all the desire to do it. Most likely he's not doing it now because of his financial situation. The problem is he does seem to understand the idea of maintaining a more formal relationship with his son's mother. One time he told me that if she were to come "all 4 of us could sometimes go out together" :Not-Impressed: That doesnt even fit into my head right, how he can think that his current woman and his ex could enjoy some quality time together. Recently said that once he has his (or more like our) business running, he wouldnt mind hiring her if she came to Canada. Once again, he doesnt seem to understand that the constant presence of an ex is not good if wants to maintain a healthy relationship with any woman. In his mind I believe he just thinks that since he's not interested in her and sees her as a "sister" it shouldnt be a problem. Sometimes when he says things such as these it makes me want to scream "idiot!" but I keep in mind the posibility of this really being a cultural thing. In my culture the cases that I've seem, the ex's are not in any way involved in the life of the man/woman. My brother's father doesnt even step into the house when he picks up my brother (mom lives with new husband). It's just respectful but a lot more formal. I dont think it could cross anyones mind for him to stay to "hang out" with my mom and her new husband.

Seeing how it's very possible that this situation becomes reality in the future and my boyfriend and I just dont seem to see this in the same way, I really feel that the only option is for us to separate. If it does happen, I just dont think we'll be able to make it work, it'd be a constant battle for me trying to explain to him why in the world I wouldnt want to spend 2 hours at his ex's house or why I wouldnt want her to work with us. To make matters worse he's as stubborn as a bull and if he feels the "slightest" pressure from a woman he feels the immediate need to do the opposite.

Perhaps I'm wrong on this or perhaps I shouldnt even be thinking so much about it before it even happens. I'm sorry for the long story, but I'd really love to hear some oppinions. Pretty much everyone I know is against this due to the fact that he's only 3 years in canada (read -financially unstable), the whole situation with his son and we have a 15 year difference. It's difficult for me to leave him due to a "potential" problem, I just really dont know what to do.

Thanks for any input. Smile
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Reply Mon 7 Jun, 2010 02:10 pm
@Teena phil,
He sure sounds like a leech abuseing you, and your good will. It seems he is a psycotic person who have no qualms being a great oppotunist, and you are blinded by love to see it.

I have too many times seen a partner being abused by a selfish narcicistic persons, who would NEVER help or provide, not even contribute just a few coins to their love ..and still the other part would be blinded and utterly naive.
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Reply Mon 7 Jun, 2010 02:30 pm
@Teena phil,
I think just the fact that you came here to share your story with us is a red flag for your relationship with him. If it were me, I wouldn't bother with it, because it just sounds like way too much baggage. The kid, the ex being so close, him not even caring about your thoughts on it. I'm not you though, but that's already three Xs. So if you want my opinion despite the fact it might be difficult to do, I would say move on. You might be missing out on something better.
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Teena phil
Reply Mon 7 Jun, 2010 03:27 pm
@Teena phil,
Thank you both for reading and responding.
I wonder if it really is like that though. Sometimes I think that I'm just being egotistical. His side is that obviously he wants his son in Canada & theres little possibility of her leaving Cuba without his direct involvement. Now his thinking is that if he for example has a business and she can barely find a job and support herself and the kid, it would be ok for him to hire her or to involve her in some way in the business. Now I would be against it, I would say that if he wants to bring both of them, he has to be sure that he has the financial ability to support them in case she doesnt find any work (in a monthly check sort of way). Or she goes back/marries someone/etc. But in no way would I want her involved in his or our work. It seems unnatural to me & Im not made of stone. Which one of us is the egotistical one?

I'm not saying that he should forget about his child. For me the logical option would be to wait until he's 12 years old more or less and to bring him alone. The way I see it I would've had a child by then also and it wouldnt be such a big adjustment. Obviously this would be a little difficult for everyone but on the other hand I dont believe that I should be the only one to suffer and sacrifice by accepting everything his way. After all this isnt a problem from my side.
Or even if he was to bring them both, to let her live her life completely separately, meaning no other involvement in any way other than things that have to do with the kid. The problem is that its extremely unlikely to work that way, as both him and his ex are used to the way things are in Cuba. His ex worked with him back in Cuba and supposedly his last girlfriend was fine with it, except once he left to Canada she ended up putting some witchy stuff to harm the woman and started to treat his child badly. I imagine she had some resentment built up.

and Krumple, she's not close at the moment, but its possible that she will be one day. Having seen how things work in Cuba, I know I wont be able to accept this type of life. Am I crazy for thinking about this now? She might not even end up living here, but he wants them to, so she might...
I feel like Im ruining my relationship at the moment due to something that may not even happen. I know Im driving him crazy with this subject but I just cant be at peace with anything if we're not even on the same page. He gets annoyed, starts to block me out and says that its stupid to worry so much about something uncertain. Or that I wouldnt worry so much if I werent so insecure. Pretty much blames the insecurity.
Could it really be just my egoism/insecurity?
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Reply Mon 7 Jun, 2010 03:56 pm
@Teena phil,
I can only say, when he has exploited you, domped you, and you are all crying, don't blame youself and commit suicide, it's a bad thing.

Please log in to this forum and tell us the outcome.
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Reply Wed 9 Jun, 2010 06:10 pm
@Teena phil,
hi teena-
speaking as someone who has gotten deeply involved in another culture, i can tell you that if it isnt appealing to you now (the idea of being part of a family that includes an ex-partner of your husband or another woman the mother of one of his children) it isnt going to become any more acceptable later.

i understand your mode of thinking because i will excuse almost any kind of behavior on the basis of it being a 'cultural difference' and give the person the benefit of the doubt. for instance, being a thief is an acceptable profession some times and places-
but that doesnt mean you want to leave your goodies out unguarded and be robbed.

1.5 years goes really fast when you are in love-but it really isnt such a long time. and as time goes on, i think you will find this only to be the tip of the iceberg as far as what can be called 'cultural differences'...

egads, i just noticed you are in uzbekistan...do you normally live in canada? or is the cuban fellow a canadian citizen working in uzbek?
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