to feel that we cannot possibly accept this?

(229 Posts)
OhThePlacesYoullGo Fri 28-Dec-12 13:55:09

My BF and I have been together for six months now and have just decided to move in together after finding out I am pregnant earlier this month. While this was completely unplanned, we are now both very happy and excited about having a baby together. I was initially very concerned about finances as my bf still has another 1.5 years before finishing med school and I am in the first year of my (paid) doctorate. However, I have since found out that I am entitled to maternity pay and as I have some savings, figured we would somehow be able to wing it until he starts work, even if that does involve sharing a studio flat and second hand baby clothes.

I met BF's parents for the first time earlier this month, which is also when we told them that I am pregnant. Let's just say BF and I are from COMPLETELY different backgrounds, as in I grew up in foster care and he went to boarding school and goes rowing and they have a freakin' beach house 'for weekends'. So I was already scared witless that they would be less than impressed at him bringing me home.

They had us over for Christmas and have now offered us a flat. I mean, what???? I barely know them, they probably think I am some kind of gold digger and getting pregnant was a ruse to get their son. BF thinks I am being crazy and that it's no problem at all. But I am not, am I now? That's not normal; I don't know them. I cannot let them give us a flat. We will manage somehow.

Lavenderhoney Tue 01-Jan-13 04:50:53

That law must have been put in place quite recently about illegitimate children? My cousin had a baby just before she married in 2007 and they told her to make sure she re registered after the marriage, due to potiential problems with inheritance and the child was issued with new paperwork.

Thanks for telling mesmile I don't want to say things and get it wrong.

forehead Mon 31-Dec-12 20:25:14

My advice is simple. Don't be tempted to give up work and save as much money as you can.
I know many women who have married a 'kind, generous man' and have been left in the lurch when the 'kind, generous man' abandoned them. Just protect yourself.
Sleigh and Flatbread are not being pessimistic, they are being realistic.

Take it, be grateful and suitably thankful without grovelling. If it were me
I would consider putting all or part of what you were expecting to pay in rent into a savings account so that you have a cushion should you need it.

sarahtigh Mon 31-Dec-12 18:07:40

yes illegimate children do have the same rights now, except as regards inheritance of titles etc, also some farms/ estates will have something called an entail which protects the land for the blood family for themselves, so it would not be sold or split up, so generally eldest son inherits it all

so technically if Kate had a child with Prince William before they married he/she would not be heir to the throne, to be heir they would have to marry before the birth not after

OhThePlacesYoullGo Mon 31-Dec-12 18:07:38

sarahtigh haha no BF is not a duke or anything of the like. His dad has an MBE, but that's not quite the same thing. :D

SleighbellsRingInYourLife, agreed.

Have spoken to BF re: wills, etc and we will look into this shortly.

BartletForTeamGB Mon 31-Dec-12 12:42:02

"The will should state how any assets are shared out should anything happen to you or your by or both how your child will inherit. Laws are different for illegitimate children. If you registered your baby, married and had another, and did not reregister the first, the second can challenge the will."

This is wrong. 'Illegitimate' and 'legitimate' children have the same rights now, although it wasn't always the case. Any child not sufficiently provided for in a will can contest it and if the will says all children will inherit, than all children will.

However, the rights of unmarried partners are very, very limited. I think there is a lot of scaremongering going on throughout this thread, but I'd really, really encourage you to get life insurance & wills, including guardians, sorted. This goes for both parties in any unmarried family to protect you both.

SleighbellsRingInYourLife Mon 31-Dec-12 10:29:41

I'm sure they do care, as much as you can care about anyone you've met once.

But I think the advice that say "this is what it's like to be part of a living family" are way premature.

You don't become family overnight.

Finding out that your medical student son has knocked up his recent girlfriend is probably not the best news they've ever had.

Helping him out with a flat and keeping their fingers crossed it all works out well for him is sensible.

And being kind to the new pregnant girlfriend is part of that.

But there is no way they don't have worries and reservations.

Where your interests align with their son's, they will be right behind you.

When they don't (and they won't always) they will not be on your side.

If you are going to live in their flat, on their goodwill, at least be aware of that.

SleighbellsRingInYourLife Mon 31-Dec-12 10:28:38

I'm sure they do care, as much as you can care about anyone you've met once.

But I think the advice that say "this is what it's like to be part of a living family" are way premature.

You don't become family overnight.

Finding out that your medical student son has knocked up his recent girlfriend is probably not the best news they've ever had.

Helping him out with a flat and keeping their fingers crossed it all works out well for him is sensible.

And being kind to the new pregnant girlfriend is part of that.

But there is no way they don't have worries and reservations.

Where your interests align with their son's, they will be right behind you.

When they don't (and they won't always) they will not be on your side.

If you are going to live in their flat, on their goodwill, at least be aware of that.

sarahtigh Mon 31-Dec-12 09:26:37

you have to also think that if it were my DD or DS and I could buy give them flat, I would not be putting the new partner on the deeds in case relationship broke up and then then half my hard earned cash would go to someone else

most people if they buy a flat for DS /DD would have it in child's name and also get another flatmate to sign agreement whether for mortgage or not that they would move out if required without claiming on flat, this is pretty much standard practice

I would see GF initially as son's sub tenant and later if things went well then that is the time to put both on deeds or agreement

I think to take flat and share it is absolutely fine; asking to go on deeds would make OP look more like a gold-digger rather than accepting it is her BF flat,

very few people moving into a partners flat ( as opposed to getting place together) would expect to be put on tenancy/ deeds immediately but would expect trial period possibly keeping their place for a while to see how it went

if you are unmarried but he is named as father on birth certificate he has parental rights and birth would not need to be registered if you subsequently got married this has applied since 2001 before that it was different

the only disadvantage still to not being married is your child can not inherit titles etc if your parents were not married at birth ( marrying after would not alter this) so unless BF is heir to dukedom it will not matter too much

even if I had only just met my child's partner once and they were expecting child I would be interested in whether they worked etc

most people are decent and I suspect Bf's parents do care about their DS their GC and their possible future DIL

SleighbellsRingInYourLife Mon 31-Dec-12 08:47:30

"I am pretty sure his mum would lose it if I were to 'give up my career', given that she is pretty much at the top of her field and has three children."

confused

That really does not follow.

You just met this woman.

I doubt she is remotely invested in whether you work or not.

Lavenderhoney Mon 31-Dec-12 02:54:22

If you are not married and have no plans to be then you your bf should see a lawyer with you to arrange who should get care of your child should anything happen to you or both of you. He or his parents are unlikely to get automatic custody, after all your parents may want that. You cannot second guess what would happen. You might nt be there.

The will should state how any assets are shared out should anything happen to you or your by or both how your child will inherit. Laws are different for illegitimate children. If you registered your baby, married and had another, and did not reregister the first, the second can challenge the will.

Also, if you are unmarried for years and you split up/ your partner dies, you will have no claim over property etc even cars in his name. Common law wife is not a legal status. Don't be an old lady with nothing and unable to work, and no legal status.

Really, it's better to marry ( awaits flaming) but you would still need a will.
I don't see why your baby should have his fathers name automatically. Its nt a right of fatherhood. You are not married and what's wrong with your name? You won't be having his name so why your baby?

Make a plan after maternity for your continued studies, dont assume how people will react and do what's best for you and your baby. You can change your mind about anything btw, study,volunteering, anything. After a baby your viewpoints and mindset might change. Its natural. You will only let yourself down if you continue with a path you don't want to just to please others or appear strong.

Still like the sound of your pil thoughsmile

OhThePlacesYoullGo Sun 30-Dec-12 23:00:48

RillaBlythe That does sound pretty similar. smile But I also have a guaranteed job at the end of my doctorate and have worked incredibly hard to get where I am. There is NO WAY, I will not go back to finishing and then working in my field as soon as reasonably possible. As an aside, even though I don't (at all) know her well, I am pretty sure his mum would lose it if I were to 'give up my career', given that she is pretty much at the top of her field and has three children.

Ephiny, just to stress that I did not call Flatbread obnoxious at any point and found her points very useful.

cheeseandpineapple, we were joking about the name thing as if we went for a mix of our names the poor baby would end up with a triple-barrelled surname which seems a bit mean.

SleighbellsRingInYourLife Sun 30-Dec-12 22:57:12

"*she can cover the bills*

Why? They should both contribute equally to the bills.

If the expectation is that OP should pay the bills in lieu of rent, what exactly is the freebie that OP is getting that she should be grateful for?"

I totally agree with Flatbread here (again).

Earlier she put the list of questions she would ask of her own daughter.

You could do worse for an online Mammy, OP. smile

nilbyname Sun 30-Dec-12 22:37:41

Really pleased for you op

cheeseandpineapple Sun 30-Dec-12 22:06:33

Sorry not married life but family life.

Curious what name your child will have, just BF's or yours too or instead -but that's a whole other thread!

cheeseandpineapple Sun 30-Dec-12 22:05:09

Funnily enough I was thinking about this thread during the day and had life insurance and wills in mind and can see others were thinking the same.

In the event anything happened to bf after the baby is born, from my rusty recollection of intestacy rules in absence of a will, everything is split between parents and children so definitely worth discussing wills even if it seems morbid and awkward once baby is born. Life insurance is important to have too, for both of you. While you're young it won't cost much.

Just been on chocoreturn's blog and reminded that she was living in MIL and BF's place when married and after she discovered he was having an affair whilst she was pregnant with second child she had to move out so I think the caution on this thread is understandable.

Agree OP should be practical going forward to ensure she is protected in what will hopefully be unlikely situation and sounds like she is in a good position to support herself if things don't pan out.

Good to have a decent pad to start off married life but don't take anything for granted, always expect the unexpected and enjoy life in the meantime!

Ephiny Sun 30-Dec-12 21:17:08

I agree with Flatbread too, it is always worth getting the legal paperwork sorted out when moving in together and starting a family, and while no one wants to think about worst-case scenarios, they can and do happen, so it's worth being prepared. And when things do go wrong, it is very often the woman who's left literally holding the baby and in a poorer position career-wise and financially.

A lot of those women would have told you beforehand that their partner was 'amazing' and that the scenario would 'never happen.' Love and trust are great, but no substitute for legal obligations. Which is why marriage is a legal framework as well as a declaration of love.

Obviously I hope it all works out well, and it probably will! But I don't think it's fair to call someone obnoxious for advising caution in a situation like this instead of just gushing congratulations and encouragement.

RillaBlythe Sun 30-Dec-12 20:58:05

I actually agree with Flatbread. I wasn't in quite the same position, but I can see how the OP could end up where I am - I have two kids, my partner is a doctor, & I haven't worked in nearly 5 years. It made sense for us to prioritise his degree because he had a guaranteed job at the end of it, & then it made sense for us to move for his foundation years because he had to do them, & next it will probably make sense for us to move for his specialist training... & then he wants to work overseas... hmm

cantreachmytoes Sun 30-Dec-12 20:47:49

Just wanted to pass on my congratulations. I remembered your first post before you'd told BF and am very happy to hear that things are going well.
Congratulations and enjoy the life you have and ate building for yourself. You sound quite inspirational.

DontmindifIdo Sun 30-Dec-12 20:46:44

Flatbread - erm, because they are going to be a family, one will be the main earner while the other is studying, if DH was studying and not working I would assume my wage would cover the bills rather than say i'm only paying half and he can get into debt covering his share. In fact, while I was on extended maternity leave and earning nothing we went from me paying 50% of the bills to none. OK, I was raising DS, but studying so that they can earn a good wage to ensure the long term security for the family is not being a cocklodger...

Plus he should have graduated by the time she is ready to go back to do her placements, so she'll be being paid for those plus they'll have his wage coming in - that's easily going to cover any childcare bills. (If I've got this right, he's in his 4th year now so will do his final year next year while the OP is off or at most they will only have a couple of months when he's still studying and she's back to work)

Flatbread Sun 30-Dec-12 20:35:53

Can't see why you are being so obnoxious

I was trying to be helpful, didn't think I was being obnoxious at all.

OP, I wish you all the best.

<backs out of thread>

Flatbread Sun 30-Dec-12 20:29:37

she can cover the bills

Why? They should both contribute equally to the bills.

If the expectation is that OP should pay the bills in lieu of rent, what exactly is the freebie that OP is getting that she should be grateful for?

foreverondiet Sun 30-Dec-12 20:28:01

flatbread aside from the fact that the OP gets maternity pay and her bf wouldn't the facts are that its usually the mother who takes time off work after having a baby. Yes this often has the effects of delaying qualification and limiting career options... I don't see this changing any times soon even with the recent change in legislation to allow dads to take the maternity leave. Similarly its the woman alone who can decide whether the pregnancy continues. Can't see why you are being so obnoxious.

Flatbread Sun 30-Dec-12 20:20:06

Ohtheplaces,

If your bf was taking contraception, that's great. It is one indication that he acting responsibly. That is a good sign.

Are you planning to go back to your placements after maternity leave, and if so, have bf/you/his parents discussed childcare arrangements?

I know of very bright, talented friends who got pregnant, delayed their PhD because they supported their dh through law/medicine/Phd. Then when they could afford childcare, a second one came along. And/or they got posted abroad. And there was never a good time for her to finish her degree. And a good many of these marriages have not lasted, and while the men are at the peak of their careers, the women are doing very average jobs, with nowhere near the earning potential or career prospects they once had.

They could have managed having babies and a career, if they had prioritised their own careers (men do this all the time). And they could have protected themselves better financially. But very few women seem to think about this in the starry-eyed stage of a relationship.

Of course, there are many who make it. But while you hope for the best, plan for the worst.

Has bf talked about taking out insurance/a will to protect you and the baby? Especially since the flat is not in your name, and you will have no legal right to stay (I assume you guys haven't drawn up a legal contract, stating your rights, if any...?)

In this exciting stage of your life, I know you want you think in terms of a 'family unit' that will last for ever and ever. But it is key to keep your independence as well.

DontmindifIdo Sun 30-Dec-12 20:10:43

flatbread - there's three options when you get pregnant during study time - 1) don't keep the baby (either abort or adopt) 2) keep the baby and study at the same time as trying to deal with a newborn/breast feeding or 3) delay studying while taking a maternity leave. As the OP gets paid maternity leave, it would be silly to try to cope with a newborn and study/work when she doesnt have too, and she doesn't want to get rid either way of the baby.

They are in a committed, albeit short relationship, she is in a secure job, he has a free flat for them to live in, she can cover the bills until he graduates and then he is pretty much garenteed to have a well paying secure job for the rest of his life, they are in a very good position for a young couple with a baby!

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