My Date's Shocking Confession About His 'Roommate' Left Me Speechless

House With White Picket FenceAh, dating. Can't I just skip this whole dating thing and settle in with a nice, normal boyfriend who thinks I'm pretty and enjoys my cooking? No? I have to go through the rigmarole of getting to know guys on awkward first dates and deciding to move on or, worse (!), dealing with the unrequited crush when I'm not his cup of tequila? No? Damn.

Occassionally, a date makes a confession on a first date that crosses him off my list almost immediately. Like the time this one guy admitted that he liked to smoke pot. A lot. To each their own, I guess, but I'm pretty sure I don't want a pot-head boyfriend.

After that online dating disaster, I decided to get to know the next one a little better before actually agreeing to meet him. We spent two weeks emailing back and forth, and I really thought it could be a match. He was a divorced dad with a normal job, his pictures were cute, and we developed a bit of a rapport.

We took it to the next level -- texting -- and sent each other funny notes and pictures.

I got the idea that his mom lived with him, which I took with a grain of salt considering that he had full custody of two small children, one of whom wasn't in school yet. Someone has to take care of the kids while dad works, and who better than grandma?

He finally asked me out, and we agreed to meet up on a Friday night for tapas. It was nice -- there was no instant chemistry, but he was as cute as he looked in his pictures, and I'm not sure love at first sight exists anyway.

We chatted about this and that, and it came up that his mom did indeed live with him, except I had it backward ... he lived with his mom. In her house. He was saving up for his own place.

OK. I could still deal with that. Divorce sucks, and I totally get the financial drain. Maybe it was nice that he had family to help him out so he could save money.

But then. Oh but then. I had to ask about his ex-wife, the mother of his children. In this day and age, it's not usual for one parent to have full physical custody of the children after a divorce. So why were his kids living with him full-time? Was their mom in the picture? Did she take off? Did she see her kids ever?

"Well, she was really struggling to make ends meet, and she was on welfare, and living in one room of a shared apartment ..." my date began confessing.

"So it was just better for the kids to stay with you full-time?"

"Yeah ..."

"Does she still live there? Is she working on finding work and a better place?"

"She's trying to get back on her feet, yeah ... and well, my mom and I saw an opportunity to help her ..." he looked at his feet, sheepish, and it clicked.

"You live with your ex-wife??" It was all I could manage to spit out.

"Yeah, but it's only temporary and totally platonic. That relationship has been over for a long time," he rationalized.

It's so not about whether or not that relationship is over, it's just weird. For example, if we were to end up in a relationship, where would we hang out? I could just imagine coming over for dinner or to watch TV or something normal and relationship-y, and then what? His ex-wife is there? It would've been awkward enough with just his mom there!

Needless to say, I didn't go out with him again. He was a super nice guy, but living with the ex-wife is deal-breaker for me.

Do you have any dating deal-breakers?


Image via Photo Dean/Flickr

dating mom, online dating, single moms, turn-offs


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nonmember avatar Hh'sMom

Yeah! Screw him for having an amicable split and helping the mother of his children! And his children! Doesn't he know his first priority should be the comfort of some girlfriend he hasn't met yet? /s

He sounds like a stand up guy and a good father. I think he dodged a bullet.

nonmember avatar Miss Ann Trope

Unless they share a room, I don't think it should've been a deal breaker. It's definitely an area to proceed with caution, because all may not be as advertized. But if he is being honest, it means he's able to handle a breakup without getting nasty and make sure he does what is right for his children. If you knew you were dating a divorced dad, you had to know there was going to be some baggage. He apparently knew this wasn't first date material, which is why he was sheepish about it. But you asked and he didn't lie.

nonmember avatar MomOf1

I have to agree with previous posters. Sounds like he might just be a totally stand up, great guy. That is awesome that he's willing to help the mother of his children. How kind that he was upfront about something so potentially off-putting to a new date. Obviously proceed with caution, but why on earth are you jealous of his first wife?! As the mother of his children you should expect him to always care about her. That's a good thing.

nonmember avatar zan

Unless you have dealt with a live in ex, I'm not sure you can comment on this. I found it hard enough to have her living in a house next door. She knows when you have an overnight and you know when she's going to bed. It was uncomfortable and weird, but it was a good thing to acclimate the child to her new living arrangement. I was very relieved when she and her new hubs bought a house away from us.

youth... youthfulsoul

Seems like a petty reason to stop seeing someone, although if you never really liked them anyway I guess it's the perfect excuse not to see them anymore. Right?

worki... workingmama86

I dated a guy once who had his exgirlfriend living with him and his mom. They had no mutual kids together either. He said his mom let her stay, and it wasn't up to him... but for him to move out? Yea, he couldn't hold a job. Lets just say, I quit talking to him after that date! lol 

nonmember avatar BostonBob

Yeah, I'm not sure I'd call it "shocking". More "upfront".

He did what's best for his kids. And if that's what it be it. Would you feel better if he'd taken a harder stance?

nonmember avatar Andrea

And if he said she was homeless or bouncing around between friend's houses because she couldn't afford a place of her own, this guy would be a total asshole for not helping her out.

I agree with everyone else...this guy sounds great. He's obviously super caring if he's willing to live with his ex-wife to make things easy on her.

femal... femaleMIKE

In this economy, a situation like this wouldn't surprise me.

BGarcel BGarcel

Good thing you're not interested in him. He is much too good for you.

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