A MAN has revealed how he's desperate to be a good dad but his partner won't let him, controlling all the parenting decisions and undermining everything he does.
Taking to Reddit, he explained how they've been together for 10 years but have never got married, because of "commitment issues on her part".
Six years ago, they welcomed a daughter. But, bizarrely, the mum chose to have her child via sperm donor - instead of with her partner.
"She wanted the child to be solely hers so that there will be no legal battles over custody should we break up," he wrote, explaining it was connected to the same commitment issues.
"While the child is biologically and legally hers alone, I've been raising the child together since day one. Child will turn 6 soon. We both work full time and split the expenses but I do the lion's share of chores, if it matters."
Explaining the difficult situation, he says: "Problem is, as the child grows, she becomes increasingly protective. By protective, I mean she doesn't let me use common parenting methods, like natural consequences and setting boundaries.
"Everything I try to do, she undermines/undoes it. This is NOT what we had agreed upon before having the child.
"We took parenting classes, read books and attended workshops. Now it seems she has thrown all that out the window.
"Our child can do whatever she wants, eat only jellybeans for breakfast if so she fancies, stay up past midnight if she still wants to play.
"Of course that is not healthy. She's doodled on my work laptop and gf (my girlfriend) wouldn't even let me sit her down to explain why it's wrong.
"In short, she doesn't say no, doesn't teach child right from wrong, and doesn't let me do it.
"The kindergarten (nursery) teachers have already complained a ton about behavior issues and suggest that we have our child evaluated, which we did.
"The specialist gave us some insightful advice that gf chose to ignore because she believes her child is perfect, and she is actively preventing me from carrying out those advice (such as setting a schedule, limit sugary foods etc.)"
The dad said he's tried discussing their problems with his girlfriend "countless" times and even suggested therapy, but ended up going alone when his partner refused.
He added: "I wanted to try harder because I really love the child even if she's not mine biologically.
"But today I overheard gf tell her (their daughter) that I 'still need to earn the parent title' and I broke.
"I pulled her aside and told her I can never be the child's parent because she won't let me.
"Now she's mad, accusing me of trying to abandon our child and giving me the cold shoulder.
"I think I'm the a**hole because, while I didn't say it in front of the child, she's a smart kid and picks up things pretty fast. I think I've let her down."
Commenting on the thread, readers called it an "awful situation" and urged the dad to "get out", insisting his daughter is being raised to be a "spoilt brat".
One said: "Why he stayed after she got a 'sperm donor' I have no idea. Have some self respect OP (original poster).
"This woman betrayed you then and doesn't respect you now. OP being in this situation is his doing because he should of left long ago. Leave. Leave and start a real family."
A second wrote: "You’re right, your GF isn’t letting you raise the child.
"I know you love the child but you don’t have any legal rights here and you may want to consider whether or not this situation is going to continue to be detrimental for you, because it clearly already is.
"You’re not legally committed or obligated to your GF or the child. If she wants to parent alone, then let her."
And a third commented: "Ok blunt honesty time. This is not your child. Not biologically and not legally.
"And- more importantly- YOUR GIRLFRIEND DOES NOT SEE YOU AS A PARENT TO HER CHILD. And frankly if it hasn’t happened by now I doubt it ever will.
"Why be with someone who doesn’t want to make a commitment to you because she has issues she still has not dealt with?
"Why raise a child with someone who doesn’t view you as an equal parent?
"You should cut your losses and get out. You’re waiting for a lot of things that clearly aren’t going to happen."