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18, engaged & pregnant after 2 months - how do I tell her i'm worried?

MrsFLMMrsFLM member
First Comment
edited December 2014 in Family Matters
Ok, so I've got myself in a bit of a pickle so I've come here for some reassurance/advice on the alarm bells I've got going off in my head. Also, a warning - this could be a long post! 

A bit of background first... So 4 months ago, my 18 year old sister got together with this guy (9 years her elder) - for the purpose of this post I'm going to change their names to Bob (the guy) and Lisa (my sister). A month or two prior, she had split up with her girlfriend of 3 years (she came out as bisexual, and then a lesbian about 4 years ago). For the past few years, shes wanted to become a midwife, and planned her college courses around this, and was planning on going to University. Despite being an intelligent girl, she comes across as rather immature. 

I'll try and do this as a rough timeline to make it clearer!

After roughly 1 month (of incredibly 'soppy' Facebook statuses on Bob's side might I add), they got engaged. Heated discussions were exchanged between Lisa and Mum about whether it was a good idea to get engaged so soon, and later that day my other little sister (less call her Sophie) overheard Bob say that my Mum was the C-word to Lisa. All this is doing my Mum no favours being a sufferer of severe recurrent depression and Fibromyalgia (a chronic pain condition which is aggravated by stress). 

After 2 months, they moved in together, and Lisa ignored the entire family for 4 weeks, including Sophie with whom she used to text/snapchat/talk to all day, everyday. I asked both Bob and Lisa for their new address so I could send them a new home card and Bob told me they didn't want to tell anyone. 

Then Lisa contacted Sophie out of the blue one day (this would be month 3 of dating now), and Sophie went to visit them. Slowly Lisa began to communicate with the family again. It emerged that Lisa had dropped out of college, at which she was studying for her A-Levels and resitting her English GCSE (she didn't do as well in her GCSE's as predicted, due to being in and out of hospital for pneumonia for 4 months, causing her to miss a LOT of school). Up to this point, she had lied profusely about this (along with many other things like her taking up smoking), and we all knew she was lying as my mum was receiving calls and letters from the college warning expulsion. 

I contacted Bob over Facebook, asking what was going on as I was receiving worrying messages from my Mum, and he said "she has got a second job and is investing in our future together". He also lied about her being in college still. 

Just after Lisa and Bobs 4 month anniversary celebrations, Lisa went round the families for dinner and apparently after an hour and a half she told everyone she was 6-8 weeks pregnant, before breaking down in tears (of devastation apparently). My mum doesn't know what to do with herself. She has already said she will give up everything to make sure the child gets a good upbringing and I don't doubt that for a second. However, at the same she feels like she is a bad mother who didn't teach her kids well enough (even though she did!). Lisa has also announced they will be getting married before baby is born, and then be having a proper ceremony to renew vows after (although on only one wage coming from a part-time, 0 hour contract job at a supermarket, I am struggling to see how realistic an idea this is). 

And that's an overview of the last 4 months. 

Here's where my alarm bells are chiming... And it's mostly about Bob. 
1. Whenever I've messaged Lisa, or messaged them both in the same conversation, it's hardly ever Lisa that replies. Nearly always Bob. 
2. Bob has only been to the family home once or twice. He didn't go with Lisa when she announced the pregnancy.
3. Bob has been married once, for 3 weeks. 
4. Bob was supposed to be marrying another girl this year (2014) who he referred to as his "partner in life" many times on his Facebook before he started dating my sister. 
5. He has a child with another lady. (Don't get me wrong, he might just have a lot of bad luck, but he seems to work very quickly and fall in and out of love a little too easily!) 
6. He has no job. 

Basically something doesn't feel right. I haven't met the guy yet, but from what I've seen on his Facebook, and the way he speaks about Lisa to me over message, he comes across as controlling, smothering and generally a bit suspicious and it worries me.

Another thing which has got me confused is that Lisa has been on the receiving end of a broken (and forced) marriage. My mum and stepdad got divorced after 13 years, due to him having an affair. They had 3 kids together, Lisa included, all of whom had a hard time coping with it. They got married because his parents didn't want a 'b-stard' grandchild. They loved each other to bits, but didn't feel ready to marry. My dad and my mum were together for 5 years, never married, and split when I was one as he turned into an a-hole when I was born. With all this in mind, I don't get how she is so ready to go straight into marriage with no suspicions of what might happen. 

Now, I might be reading too much into things - I had an abusive relationship with my siblings Dad for the 13 years him and my mum were married, which left me rather un-trusting of men, so it could be I'm just being paranoid. That being said, I'm now very happily married. I thought I married my husband quickly (we were married after 3 years), but with Lisa it all just seems a little too fast? I'm generally open-minded (or at least I thought I was). I'm not bothered about the age difference, and if they love each other that much, then why not get married if it feels right. 

I'm just worried that my sister is being a bit ignorant. Since she is missing one of the standard 3 GCSE's (C's in maths, english and science), I'm worried she is going to find it difficult to get well-paid jobs. If she decides to go back to college in a few years, she will have to pay for it and with a baby in the mix I don't know how she will afford this. She doesn't seem to realise how difficult it could be and seems hung up on having a 'cute' baby, without taking any precautionary steps. 

I really do hope it works out for both of them and the baby... but realistically in this kind of situation, it doesn't often work out. 
Am I right to be worried?  She is very stubborn and often takes things for face value, and when things go wrong, she always finds a way to blame other people, so how do I tell her I'm worried without her taking it as if I don't believe in her and am attacking her in some way.

If you've read all of this, then thanks. Any advice/kicks up the butt is appreciated! 

Re: 18, engaged & pregnant after 2 months - how do I tell her i'm worried?

  • This sounds fishy all around. Is there any way you can get their address from Sophie and just drop by like with a housewarming present or something. My alarm bells would be singing right now.
    Some of my work.


    <img src="[IMG]http://i47.tinypic.com/35be5xi.jpg[/IMG]" width="180px">



    <img src="[IMG]http://i46.tinypic.com/9se9no.jpg[/IMG]" width="180px">
  • edited December 2014
    MrsFLM said:
    Ok, so I've got myself in a bit of a pickle so I've come here for some reassurance/advice on the alarm bells I've got going off in my head. Also, a warning - this could be a long post! 

    A bit of background first... So 4 months ago, my 18 year old sister got together with this guy (9 years her elder) - for the purpose of this post I'm going to change their names to Bob (the guy) and Lisa (my sister). A month or two prior, she had split up with her girlfriend of 3 years (she came out as bisexual, and then a lesbian about 4 years ago). For the past few years, shes wanted to become a midwife, and planned her college courses around this, and was planning on going to University. Despite being an intelligent girl, she comes across as rather immature.

    I do not think she is bi or gay. I think it may be possible she was in some type of experimental phase, sort of like the ones straight males do when they are young men.

    I'll try and do this as a rough timeline to make it clearer!

    After roughly 1 month (of incredibly 'soppy' Facebook statuses on Bob's side might I add), they got engaged. Heated discussions were exchanged between Lisa and Mum about whether it was a good idea to get engaged so soon, and later that day my other little sister (less call her Sophie) overheard Bob say that my Mum was the C-word to Lisa. All this is doing my Mum no favours being a sufferer of severe recurrent depression and Fibromyalgia (a chronic pain condition which is aggravated by stress).

    Bob is calling names simply because he does not like your mother. He sound like he's about 16 years old -- and sure, your mother is going to be pissed at him -- a guy HOW old is with her 18 year old daughter? What could a guy that much older have in common with a girl barely out of secondary school? Not much in common at all.

    Sounds to me like Lisa is simply trying to get out of the house and away from your mother. I will bet she and your mother do not get along very well at all and have not for ages.

    After 2 months, they moved in together, and Lisa ignored the entire family for 4 weeks, including Sophie with whom she used to text/snapchat/talk to all day, everyday. I asked both Bob and Lisa for their new address so I could send them a new home card and Bob told me they didn't want to tell anyone. 

    I am guessing Bob is isolating Lisa and influencing her not to talk to her family.

    This is not a good sign. This is a sign of abuse. Your sister needs to run like hell from him and in a hurry.


    Then Lisa contacted Sophie out of the blue one day (this would be month 3 of dating now), and Sophie went to visit them. Slowly Lisa began to communicate with the family again. It emerged that Lisa had dropped out of college, at which she was studying for her A-Levels and resitting her English GCSE (she didn't do as well in her GCSE's as predicted, due to being in and out of hospital for pneumonia for 4 months, causing her to miss a LOT of school). Up to this point, she had lied profusely about this (along with many other things like her taking up smoking), and we all knew she was lying as my mum was receiving calls and letters from the college warning expulsion. 

    I contacted Bob over Facebook, asking what was going on as I was receiving worrying messages from my Mum, and he said "she has got a second job and is investing in our future together". He also lied about her being in college still. 

    Just after Lisa and Bobs 4 month anniversary celebrations, Lisa went round the families for dinner and apparently after an hour and a half she told everyone she was 6-8 weeks pregnant, before breaking down in tears (of devastation apparently). My mum doesn't know what to do with herself. She has already said she will give up everything to make sure the child gets a good upbringing and I don't doubt that for a second. However, at the same she feels like she is a bad mother who didn't teach her kids well enough (even though she did!). Lisa has also announced they will be getting married before baby is born, and then be having a proper ceremony to renew vows after (although on only one wage coming from a part-time, 0 hour contract job at a supermarket, I am struggling to see how realistic an idea this is). 

    And that's an overview of the last 4 months. 

    Here's where my alarm bells are chiming... And it's mostly about Bob. 
    1. Whenever I've messaged Lisa, or messaged them both in the same conversation, it's hardly ever Lisa that replies. Nearly always Bob. 
    2. Bob has only been to the family home once or twice. He didn't go with Lisa when she announced the pregnancy.
    3. Bob has been married once, for 3 weeks. 
    4. Bob was supposed to be marrying another girl this year (2014) who he referred to as his "partner in life" many times on his Facebook before he started dating my sister. 
    5. He has a child with another lady. (Don't get me wrong, he might just have a lot of bad luck, but he seems to work very quickly and fall in and out of love a little too easily!) 
    6. He has no job. 

    Basically something doesn't feel right. I haven't met the guy yet, but from what I've seen on his Facebook, and the way he speaks about Lisa to me over message, he comes across as controlling, smothering and generally a bit suspicious and it worries me.

    Another thing which has got me confused is that Lisa has been on the receiving end of a broken (and forced) marriage. My mum and stepdad got divorced after 13 years, due to him having an affair. They had 3 kids together, Lisa included, all of whom had a hard time coping with it. They got married because his parents didn't want a 'b-stard' grandchild. They loved each other to bits, but didn't feel ready to marry. My dad and my mum were together for 5 years, never married, and split when I was one as he turned into an a-hole when I was born. With all this in mind, I don't get how she is so ready to go straight into marriage with no suspicions of what might happen. 

    Now, I might be reading too much into things - I had an abusive relationship with my siblings Dad for the 13 years him and my mum were married, which left me rather un-trusting of men, so it could be I'm just being paranoid. That being said, I'm now very happily married. I thought I married my husband quickly (we were married after 3 years), but with Lisa it all just seems a little too fast? I'm generally open-minded (or at least I thought I was). I'm not bothered about the age difference, and if they love each other that much, then why not get married if it feels right. 

    I'm just worried that my sister is being a bit ignorant. Since she is missing one of the standard 3 GCSE's (C's in maths, english and science), I'm worried she is going to find it difficult to get well-paid jobs. If she decides to go back to college in a few years, she will have to pay for it and with a baby in the mix I don't know how she will afford this. She doesn't seem to realise how difficult it could be and seems hung up on having a 'cute' baby, without taking any precautionary steps. 

    I really do hope it works out for both of them and the baby... but realistically in this kind of situation, it doesn't often work out. 
    Am I right to be worried?  She is very stubborn and often takes things for face value, and when things go wrong, she always finds a way to blame other people, so how do I tell her I'm worried without her taking it as if I don't believe in her and am attacking her in some way.

    If you've read all of this, then thanks. Any advice/kicks up the butt is appreciated! 
    Bob may very well still be legally married!

    Fact of the matter: your sister needs  to run like hell from Bob. He's no good and yes, I strongly suspect there is an abuse factor involved in all of this; the isolation from her family is a classic sign.

    I don't think college for Lisa can be saved or repaired. She's got her mind made up about that.

    And who knows if it is true she is pregnant? She could be making the whole thing up. Who knows?

    I hope this mess gets straightened out. None of this bodes well. 

    You cannot tell her you are worried. It will not penetrate and she is most likely liable to have a shit fit and cut you off for good, the second you speak up and say you are concerned. She should not be with this guy, not for love and not for money. He sounds like a good bum to me.
  • Doesn't sound like a healthy relationship but I think all you can do is keep the lines of communication open and be supporting so that way when your sister decides she has had enough that she feels she still has family she can go to and not be just told "I told you so" If you can visit with her you can give her a baby gift & talk about the pregnancy and how it's going and if she has any fears about being such a young mom. I think all you can do is be there for her, try to be supportive. If you can get to know Bob better, that would be great, but the main thing is saving your relationship with your sister.

    If you have concerns about him still being married, go to the county records online for where you live, divorce records are there just like marriage records are. Now if you find out he's still married, that opens up a whole different can of worms on how you bring that up to your sister.

    OtterJ
  • When my BFF was in an abusive relationship, I did what I could to build her up.  She kept me around because I think i was the only one doing that for her at the time.  We had been friends for so long that I also knew deep down what kind of man she truly wanted to marry and be with, so I tried to paint a picture of that life she could have.  

    After a while, I started to become more bold and ask her difficult questions such as when he was caught in a lie.  I knew she might not break up with him then, but I at least gave her something to think about.  

    I think her final straw was when she got tested for STDs.  I think something in her head clicked and she thought " I never want to go through this again." 

    So that is my advice to you,  build up her confidence and be specific when you do.

    Don't be afraid to ask difficult questions.  She might not end things, but you will at least give her something to think about.

    If he is ever suspected of cheating, instead of encouraging her to break up with him, encourage her to get tested for STDs.  
    puppylove2014OtterJ
  • College is the least of it at this point: what is important here is her safety.

    Some day in the future she can re-enroll in a college somewhere or try a trade school --- maybe she is not even the college type. No shame; there are many famous people who either never went or dropped out.
  • MrsFLMMrsFLM member
    First Comment
    edited December 2014
    Thanks for all the replies everyone! They've been really helpful, and I'm glad to know I'm not crazy for having alarm bells chiming! 

    Thought I'd give you all an update - I went over to my parents house for the weekend because I was worried about my Mum. Bob and Lisa couldn't pay their rent (1st month by the way), and my Mum bailed them out despite having her own money worries. It turns out Lisa is only actually working 4 hours a week and he still hasn't found work. Anywayyyyy, I got to meet Bob!

    My initial instinct was to punch him in square in the face. However I held back, mainly because I've never punched anyone before! :P I sat quietly and observed instead, and was pretty surprised if I'm honest! Now, I'd like to say that I am no expert, however my clinical psychology undergrad along with many many other things have given me a pretty good understanding into body language and not taking things for face value (because of my area of interest, this mostly only applies to mental health, but I guess it could be expanded!). 

    I think my parents may have been somewhat blinded by the obvious oddities (his age, her dropping out of college, the whole marriage thing) that they were kinda missing what was underneath. What I was seeing was the opposite of what I suspected before I met the guy and had seen them together!

    First thing I noticed about Bob was that he was a very nervous guy with absolutely no confidence. He kept playing with his hair and talked down about himself a few times. He clearly adores my sister. He does have a bit of a 'creepy guy' vibe to him, but that's just personal opinion. What struck me what not his behaviour, but my sisters!

    She was overall very dismissive of him, and quite frankly rather horrible. At the dinner table, she cut him off several times and at one point I noticed her kick him under the table. There were two occasions after dinner when he came up to hug her from behind, and she hardly reacted. Not even to hold him back. Not once did I see them kiss (which is only odd because all her ex's she used to snog all of the time!). There was a period of about 10 minutes when Bob was out talking to my Mum about the best course of action as far as a job and money were concerned. I only caught a snippet of their conversation but I found out after she was arranging to take them both down to the council to help them arrange housing and benefits. As they were talking, Lisa seemed agitated and kept looking over at them as if she was worried about what they might be saying. 

    Anyway, the bit that topped it all off for me was a period of about 5 minutes when I was outside having a smoke with Bob, Lisa (who wasn't smoking), and my step-sister. Bob told Lisa that my Mum had said he should cancel his doctors appointment, which happens to be just after Lisas first appointment with the midwife (thus meaning he misses the appointment with the midwife and Lisa), so that he could go to a 4 hour interview he has been offered. He said that he thought that was sensible to which she replied "She can f**k off. Don't you dare cancel on the doctors or me. Rearrange the interview or don't go to it. Simple". I think in this instance he was doing the right thing. At the moment, getting something to bring money in, given that the only money they have is from her 4 hours a week, he is seeing as a priority, which is good! 
    Next, my step-sister asked if Lisa would have to talk about illnesses that run in the family when she meets the midwife. Lisa replied with something along the lines of "I think so, but I don't know anything of his history and I don't give a s**t. His family aren't even talking to him" to which he mumbled something and she replied with "They clearly don't care about you" or something to that effect to which he was a bit taken aback.
    Then the conversation went back onto Bobs interview, and he said he didn't think he would be any good at it because he was only ever good at being a bus-driver. He then said that if he had to, he would go back to buses. She told him no. Then my step-sister said he should hand his CV in at her place of work, and she would have a word with her manager to see if she could get him something. He said it would be great and thanked her, but Lisa said "Don't you go getting him a job, he can find his own job thanks". 

    Now, my sister can be very manipulative and does lie a lot... I don't want to think it, but I think she is stringing him along and is the manipulating Bob! She's quite dominant over him, and his love doesn't seem to be reciprocated back to him from her. He genuinely is trying to find a job etc, but I think she is somewhat of a barrier, and I suspect she had something to do with him randomly walking out of his old job since he claims he loved being a bus driver and it's 'all he knows how to do'. 
    She's done similar to this before, to rub my Mum up the wrong way. (In case you didn't notice, my mum and Lisa aren't getting on that well. Lisa was more of a 'daddies girl' and when mum and her dad split up, I think she blamed my mum, even though it was her dad that was in the wrong). When she was dating her girlfriend, at first my Mum wasn't approving as she thought it was "just a phase". Once her girlfriend moved in, my Mum started to really get along with her and accept that maybe it wasn't a phase, Lisa cheated on her. It's like she's just finding more and more ways to anger my Mum... 

    OH, one last thing I learned when I was there. Lisa used NO contraception, despite my Mum saying several times that now she is with a man, she needs to start being more careful, and several times directed her to the clinic up the road that does free contraception. Lisa is not stupid... she knows that no contraception leads to babies, yet she went ahead and did it anyway. WHY? Her reasoning behind it was that "Bob is allergic to latex. He has a doctors note". This is her first time with a man, and she's been using NOTHING. So what if he really is allergic to latex... You can get latex free condoms... She could get the marina coil, get the implant, have the injection, go on one of the MANY pills etcetc.... FOR FREE. WHY DID SHE NOT? Again, it's like she was deliberately rubbing my Mum up the wrong way... My mum recommended she do something, so she does the opposite. Classic Lisa. 

    PS... In case you hadn't noticed, the no contraception thing reallllllllly winds me up! 


  • Wow, well glad to hear that Bob isn't the dead beat that you thought he was originally. It does sound like your sister has a lot of growing up to do & fast. Hopefully you can keep the lines of communication open, especially after she has her baby. I think she will be getting a massive reality check. Also if you haven't already, maybe give Bob the phone numbers for people in the family so that way if something comes up and he needs help with the baby, he can call your family for help. I just have this vision of him getting a job, your sister takes off for hours leaving him with the baby & not coming back in time for him to go to work risking his job. Not that your family should be on babysitting stand by,that was just an emergency I came up with. Having your family as a resource could help him in some of the rough times of having a baby. Like he can call your mom & go "the baby is doing xyz, is this normal, are there any tricks to dealing with this?" Basically getting some maternal advice from someone who has been through it can be a great resource. The reason I'm saying to be available for Bob, I have a feeling he's going to get stuck with the baby a lot.
  • You sister sounds like an child with a lot of life lessons to learn.  Unfortunately she'll be learning them now with a child in tow.  

    I think you have one "come to Jesus talk" and then you need to zip your mouth and follow from a distance.  Prep yourself.  Get all of your main concerns ready and then tell your sister.  She can do with it what she wants.

    My husband did this with his sister.  She didn't listen, but her life is currently an insane mess.  She married a guy she had only been dating a few months, just moments after he became legally divorced and had a baby 9 months later.  He was in a shit load of debt and was way underwater on his house, which was already too small for them and his two children from his previous marriage, let alone their new child.  He's a total tool and demeans her and anybody around him.  Recently, he went and quit his job to start what sounds like a completely illegal/illegitimate business, when they already are in a real financial pickle.  And... she's pregnant again.  His "come to Jesus" talk obviously didn't work, but I'm sure she now realizes he was right, even if she won't admit it.  The last part of his talk with her was "If you ever need us, we're here for you."  And 2 years later, that's still true.  
  • Hmmm...controlling, doesn't let her answer family messages herself....sounds to me like this is the onset of an abusive relationship.  She needs to get the hell out of there.  As for going back to college, unless she gets the hell out of there I don't see him "letting" her do that - or anything else that entails getting her out of the house without him, for that matter.

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