Jump to content

Extremely disillusioned


  • Please log in to reply
19 replies to this topic

#1 tomyoda

Posted 29 December 2012 - 12:29 PM

Ok, so I am feeling a bit messed up at the moment, and need some assistance.........I was in a ten year relationship, up until mid 2012. The relationship wasn't bad, but certainly wasn't great. My partner didn't hold dear to him, any thing that I held dear to me, such as buying a home, travelling, and having more children. We obviously stayed together out of habit, until I took stock of my life, and realised that I couldn't go on like this, any longer.

My real problems started after I made the break. I was sad, but felt so liberated, knowing that I could focus on myself, and down the track, hopefully meet somebody wonderful to share my life with. One day, in August, I received an email from a US Marine, on deployment. I support troops overseas, by sending care packages, and buying random troops cups of coffee. It turns out that I had bought this Marine a cup of coffee, and he wanted to be pen pals. He told me that he was 25, and had 4 children, which was fine with me. I understand that relationships can break down, and that some people have their families young. I had my son when I was a teenager, and I empathised with the Marine, because to have 4 children so young, and to live on the opposite side of the country to them, would be so difficult. Anyway, we wrote, long, long, daily emails, full of the trivial and the not so trivial. He would make sure that I had an email to wake up to every morning, when he was flat out, he would send random messages, to say that he was thinking of me, etc. One day he sent a message from his iPhone, saying I think you are AMAZING, and another time he sent MUAH, one thousand times, when he knew I had been having a bad week:)

Our daily emails became very personal, and you have no idea how much I looked forward to them. I had niggling thoughts at the back of my mind, wondering why he stuck to emails, and didn't suggest instant messaging or Skype, but I made excuses and pushed them to the side. From time to time I would think that he is someone I have never physically met, I had seen pictures, and that was all.......he could be just a player. My family and friends would argue that he was definitely attached to me, and that a player wouldn't write the essays that he wrote daily, a player would want to instant message, and probably Skype. About a month ago, he told me his middle name....being the sticky beak I am, I Googled his name, and one page came up.....Valentines day, 2011, someone had 'bought' him a star, and that someone turned out to be his wife:(. I thought that I should give him the benefit of the doubt, and that maybe he had divorced in those 18 months.....so after a bit more Googling I found an old page, where there were pictures of him and his wife, when they were very young and having their second child, after having just gotten engaged. There were romantic notes that they had written to one another, and a note where she apologised to him for cheating on him. I felt like the biggest idiot, but I thought that if he had have been in a relationship, why would he have mentioned the fact that he had 4 children....why not hide it all? So, in my next email, I was honest with him, and asked him to be honest with me. He wrote back, and basically he apologised, and said that although it is messed up, he is glad that I am so attached to him. He said he is married, and very unhappy.

When I thought he was single, for all of those months, I couldn't believe how cynical he was, about love. He told me about all of the Marines he knows, who have been cheated on by their wives, while they are deployed, and how broken some of the men are. He mentioned a few times, how trapped he felt in his life, never elaborating, only saying that it wasn't because he had children. Then, when I saw the public notes he had written to his wife, years before, it was like it came from another person. I am not stupid, obviously his wife and he have a culture of cheating in their relationship, she lives in New York , and he is based in California, which is obviously not good on their marriage. I went easy on him, he didn't meet me on a dating site, and I know he doesn't owe me anything.....it's just that he implied so much, that he shouldn't have, and it really hurts, even now. He writes short emails once a week now, I still reply back, in a completely platonic way, because I don't think he is a bad person, just very mixed up. I am happy to be a friend to him, and have told him that I don't have to be a part of his life at all, and that he should just stop messaging me. He messaged me on Christmas day, telling me how stressed out he is, being back in the US, and that he is having a hard time adjusting. I try to be supportive, as a friend, and sometimes wish he would just de friend me on fb, and stop emailing me. I wish that I was strong enough to do it myself.

My family and friends know what he meant to me, for all of those months. They know that he is what inspired me to lose 17 kilos, to exercise every day and to stop biting my nails. They tell me that people come into your life for a reason, and that he has served his purpose in mine. I start to let go more and more, and then he writes again, usually four or five lines, and always sounding depressed. I truly want to be a friend to him, and to get out and meet other people, and I am currently doing that. I guess that people can read this, and say he is married, stay away, and I agree. I am holding onto the friendship we developed, and truly believe that he is too. I know  that I gave him a lot of support while he was deployed, when he was ill, and trying to study on top of all of his work over there...why won't he just stop writing? It is not like I flirt with him any more, now that I know he is married. What benefit is there in him even bothering with me any more, especially considering our geographical locations? So much went on between us, more then I can ever explain here. Arggh, I am so sick of thinking about this? What would you do, considering the fact that I am emotionally invested in this person? Thank you for your help original.gif

#2 ♥~Bodhichitta~♥

Posted 29 December 2012 - 12:48 PM

First of all my heart really goes out to you.  It's hard to open up to someone, and trust them with your heart.

You obviously cared about him a lot, and it hurts to know that he's not what you thought he was.

I think though that you did something amazing for him.  He was obviously lonely and mixed up, and you provided him comfort, and someone to talk to.  And he's probably really valued that, and is now feeling confused about the way he is feeling about you considering the circumstances.

I'm not sure I have any advice, but I wanted to say - please don't feel that the relationship you had was a waste of time.

You were there for each other, and gave each other happiness, even it was just for a short while.

#3 tomyoda

Posted 29 December 2012 - 01:14 PM

Thank you, Bodhichitta original.gif. I really appreciate your reply....when I read your kind words, I started crying again, lol.......but I am so glad that you can see where I am coming from. I have always been a very logical person, but a romantic at the same time, so this whole situation has really thrown me. Thanks againxxxx

#4 raven74

Posted 29 December 2012 - 01:28 PM

I am sorry you are hurting.
The fact is, he won't stop writing until you stop replying.
You need to remember, although this is so hard and bittersweet for you, that he lied.  Either by omission or blatantly - only you know how.  You invested in an emotional affair and he did not reveal his marriage.  You supported him, invested in him and still are investing in him, no matter how platonic the friendship now is.  I can see from your post how unhealthy this is for you. sad.gif
What so YOU want out of this?  Because right now, that's the important question.


#5 MooGuru

Posted 29 December 2012 - 01:29 PM

This might be crazy advice to give but it sounds like you were previously very open and honest with him, so have you considered saying to him exactly what you've written here? It's like a summary of everything you feel and maybe he'll answer the questions you're asking. What is the worst thing that can happen?

Having said that I've never been in this situation so have no idea whether I would ever follow through this advice myself but it sounds like you need clarity (enough that you've posted here) and he's the only one that can give it to you.

Good luck!

#6 tomyoda

Posted 29 December 2012 - 02:06 PM

Thank you, raven74 and MooGuru:)....Moo, I laid out my heart to him, after I found out the truth. I told him that I wasn't going to judge him too harshly, and that I understand that people can still be in a relationship, long after it has broken down. I told him that I didn't appreciate being seen as a diversion, if he was happily married, and just being a player, while away from the US. He told me that he would never treat me as just a diversion, and that he is very unhappy in his current life.

raven, he omitted the truth, and while I was hurt, I understood that he probably thought that we would email once or twice, and that would be it.....I don't believe that either of us envisioned that it would become as serious, as it did between us...there was never going to be a right time to tell me, without the risk of losing me, I guess. You are right, he won't be out of my life, unless I stop replying. I send him emails now, that are a couple of paragraphs, and nothing like the ones I used to write. In them, I am always upbeat, and share news, and funny anecdotes about my life and family, of who he is familiar with. .....it hurts that the past few weeks, he will reply roughly every 5 days, and thee past 2 weeks, he doesn't even refer to what I have written....one would think he was just being nice, and that is why I told him straight out to stop writing, if it is stressful having me write, and I will never bother him again.

I even had the 'door mat' thought that I wish I had never told him that I knew, because it changed everything.....but I couldn't have lived with that, obviously. Raven, you are correct....I insinuate that I want him out of my life, and the logical, self preservation part of my brain does.....but to be truthful, I don't really want him gone. This is really unhealthy, and I am hoping something will just click, and make me strong again....or that he will cut me off, and take the choice away....

#7 opethmum

Posted 29 December 2012 - 02:37 PM

I think you should take a big huge step back and think about what he might be doing to you. You don't really know what is going on in his life on a day to day basis and he may be telling you an almighty lie. He may be unhappy in his marriage but that is for him to sort out not you and I would be redirecting him back to his wife and kids. You both have kids and you need to put them first, you are a mother and you need to be focusing on your children and not some nutter on the other side of the world. Your children are probably hurting given your recent break up and they need stability and direction and I think by relying on this person to fix you is doing you and your children damage.
You need to stop and really grow up and realise that you probably need to be alone and focussing on providing your kids a peaceful happy life and find contentment in other things. You are doing yourself a disservice as well, if he is willing to emotionally cheat on his wife what makes you think he will ever be loyal to you.
When you are a mother you don't get a choice to gamble with your future, your future is decided in that you must do your utmost to rear your children and do the best you can with what you have.
FWIW I don't think most military wives cheat on their spouses, yes it is hard but I think that it is a lie to make his justification on cheating on his wife better in your eyes.
Your relationship is based on a lie and you don't want that surely, what person would. You know what you should do so just get on with it and move on and leave this nutter behind and just focus on being yourself and meet new people in your area and find contentment in the simple things rather that somebody who lies to you.

#8 Starrydawn

Posted 29 December 2012 - 02:46 PM

Cut all contact. I would hazard a guess everything about him is a lie. It s easy to do on the net.

I recently watched tall hot blonde about a lie fuelled internet affair and people will weave any web. Back in the late nineties early 2000 when icq was the way to chat every second person was lying.

#9 ms flib

Posted 29 December 2012 - 02:50 PM

I think he took advantage of you. He had all the power in your relationship plus a wife and 4 children!

This is part of the process of making new relationships. Sometimes things don't work out - that's OK, it's normal.

It's probably time to move on. I'd recommend you do things IRL that you love and where you can meet people. The internet is not the best place for relationships.

You sound sensitive and sensible. Let it go.

All the best!

#10 Cath42

Posted 29 December 2012 - 02:51 PM

I couldn't read this thread and not reply. I'm so sorry that things have turned out the way they have, OP. I'm assuming that you live in Australia and he is in California?

Are this man and his wife actually still together? It sounds to me as though they separated a while ago. They may be still married, but he lives in California and she lives in New York with their 4 children. I would have thought that unless there were extenuating circumstances, such as a child with special needs, a serviceman's family would move with him if he was posted across the country. Certainly, that tends to be what happens in Australia.

But even if they've separated, I guess that doesn't answer the question of where this relationship between he and you was going to go. He has 4 kids he's financially responsible for and needs to see as often as he can. Even if he and his ex-wife live on opposite sides of the US, they're still in the same country. Leaving the US is just not an option for this guy. I don't doubt for one minute that his feelings for you aren't genuine. He wouldn't have kept writing the way he did if he didn't care about you and think about a life with you. It was probably the only thing that got him through his deployment. But I suspect that now that he's back in California and dealing with the minutiae of demands of everyday life, he's realised that this relationship is a pipe dream. He's there - and he can't leave the counry his kids live in (and no doubt doesn't want to leave his kids) - and you're here, with your own family commitments. And there you both stand, ad infinitum. Sometimes in this life, we meet the person of our dreams, but the circumstances or the timing are wrong and there's nothing that can be done about it. This may well be one of those tragic situations.

I don't think he meant to hurt you, or to lie to you. I think he met someone he could bare his soul to, who he realised he cared about very deeply, and who he could never be with because of circumstances beyond the control of both of you. If you don't want him to back off, tell him not to back off. There azre still a lot of things you and he need to talk through, and even though circumstances have kept you apart there is still a lifelong friendship to be had.

#11 annasue

Posted 29 December 2012 - 02:55 PM

You don't have a relationship with a person.

You have been exchanging emails/messages with a stranger on the other side of the world.

He has lied to you. You don't even know to what extent he has lied to you.

You need to block his messages and facebook and any other access he has to you and put it all behind you.

He had no right communicating so intimately with you whilst married to another woman. What he has done says much about his character and its a character of a dishonest cheat. You deserve better.

Stop replying to him. Block him.

#12 Candyley

Posted 29 December 2012 - 03:17 PM

QUOTE (Cath42 @ 29/12/2012, 03:51 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Are this man and his wife actually still together? It sounds to me as though they separated a while ago. They may be still married, but he lives in California and she lives in New York with their 4 children. I would have thought that unless there were extenuating circumstances, such as a child with special needs, a serviceman's family would move with him if he was posted across the country. Certainly, that tends to be what happens in Australia.


I am also curious about this OP, as the wife of a US marine myself generally the wives and children move to the bases with their husbands as housing etc is provided.

I am not sure what he's intentions are/were, maybe he is a con artist, maybe he really was genuine and really does feel a connection with you too, either way from my own experience, when they are deployed they can feel very lonely emotinally and really love to vent it all out to someone who really cares and will "listen" perhaps you were that person for him if he is having marital problems.
I could get one line from my husband some days then a huge emotional essay and then some very distressed ones.  They generally really just need to know there is someone on the other end of the screen caring and showing them interest in their emails.

#13 tomyoda

Posted 29 December 2012 - 03:39 PM

Thank you for your replies.....Openthmum, I can assure you that my Son has, and always will come first. My son is extremely happy with his life, and was extremely happy when I broke up with ex. My relationship issues are mine to deal with alone, and not my child's problem. I am not sitting in my room, ignoring my life and in a deep depression. I just carry around the weight of what could have been, while getting on with my life:). Thank you for your concern though.....

ms Flib, you are totally correct re relationships on the Internet. I know what I need to do, and that is focus my energy and thoughts on positive things:). I guess that with him, I wasn't trying to create an online relationship, it just evolved into something that I never expected. Thank you original.gif.

annasue, thank you....I do agree that he did the wrong thing. I don't agree that you can't build a friendship with a person through correspondence. I have some beautiful friends in the Uk, who I started out as pen pals with, eventually met, and now keep in regular contact with. Yes, he did the wrong thing, but we are only human, and there is much of him that was genuine, I know that.

Shizella and Cath42,Thank you....all I know is that the wife and children live in New York, and he is based in California, which I find an odd situation too. It is hard to explain to people, without coming across delusional, but he was definitely genuine, in his correspondence with me. My family and friends agree with this, even though they are angry with him on my behalf. Our bond was obviously a surprise to both of us, and I knew that we had everything against us, with him being military, and living so far away from one another.....but I had the dream that could have been real, of us meeting, and who knows, lol....obviously, as things stand that is not a reality......but first and foremost we do have a friendship, and I was a support to him, when he needed me.....Cath, thank you, that is exactly how I see the situation, and I like to think that we can have an enduring friendship....I just need to get past the dreams I had, and realise that I am grateful for the friendship we formed, in strange circumstances:)

#14 DreamFeralisations

Posted 29 December 2012 - 03:51 PM

OP - I am so, so sorry that this has happened to you.

I think, for you to heal and move on, you need to stop your side of the communications - you can only control your actions, and even though you tell him not to do stuff, he is an adult and, while still getting some return on his email investment, will keep the hunt going by the sounds.

Obviously you are a very caring and giving woman - could you perhaps set 2013 to be your year to channel that care and attention to yourself, nurture and rediscover yourself and work out exactly who you are without the definitions of a long-term or long-distance relationship?

Good luck for the future.

#15 Stellajoy

Posted 29 December 2012 - 03:59 PM

You need to cut all ties so you are emotionally available to meet someone new.

Staying "friends" ( which I think is a bit delusional) will hold you back.

#16 babychacha

Posted 29 December 2012 - 09:54 PM

QUOTE (annasue @ 29/12/2012, 03:55 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
You don't have a relationship with a person.

You have been exchanging emails/messages with a stranger on the other side of the world.

He has lied to you. You don't even know to what extent he has lied to you.

You need to block his messages and facebook and any other access he has to you and put it all behind you.

He had no right communicating so intimately with you whilst married to another woman. What he has done says much about his character and its a character of a dishonest cheat. You deserve better.

Stop replying to him. Block him.


I agree.

Have you ever heard of/or seen this movie? Its based on a true story.

http://www.pushon.co.uk/blog/tall-hot-blon...ress-up-online/

And highlights the lies that are told via the net.

I'm sorry you were hurt.

#17 epl0822

Posted 29 December 2012 - 10:25 PM

You remind me of the time I gave a fake lotto ticket to my sister as a joke. She thought she won $10k - you should have seen the look on her face and the immediate list of stuff she was going to do with the money - then the crashing fall when she realised it was about as real as the fairy godmother.

You thought you found genuine affection and a potentially permanent relationship. You developed an intense emotional attachment to this man, the same as you would for a long term boyfriend. But it wasn't real.

Don't justify his behaviour by saying "he never owed you anything." People don't form intimate emotional attachments like that because they want to be friends. The long daily emails and the personal history and feelings he shared and the implied affection all said, without explicitly stating, that he was available and he wants to be with you.

But let's take a step back and analyse him for what he truly is. He. Lied. To You. Lying by omission is still a lie. To lie to you like that and allow you to fall for him, all the time knowing he was married and he was inevitably going to hurt you, is despicable. It's a filthy thing to do to someone. I know it's easy to gloss over the ugly parts - I did it too when a person I hugely trusted revealed their true character. In my case it was my best friend since childhood. I just couldln't believe the friend I loved and cared about was not the person I thought she was. It took me two years to see her for what she was.

Yup, I know it's hard to sever contact. But the longer you drag it on the more harmful it is for your mental health. You can keep pretending you can be friends with him, but eventually you're going to realise what a scumbag he was and regret wasting your time.

Relationships are not like Hollywood films. Sometimes we can have a wonderful,meaningful, significant relationships with a person and have the worst ending. It doesn't erase the impact they had on you or mean that the whole relationship was senseless. It takes awhile but the best thing you can do in this situation is to recognise that you gained a lot from this relationship, you cared for him deeply and maybe a part of you always will. But he's scum and he lied to you. He was lonely and used you.

Don't cheapen yourself by prolonging your ties with this man.

#18 Guest_bottle~rocket_*

Posted 29 December 2012 - 10:48 PM

Your post rings alarm bells OP.  Has this person asked you for money?  I agree with PPs who say to end all contact.  What evidence do you have that anything he has told you is true, or that he is who he says he is?

It reminds me of this article
http://www.theage.com.au/digital-life/cons...0717-228bi.html


#19 Cat People

Posted 30 December 2012 - 09:13 AM

This 'man' was a complete fantasy OP.  He wasn't real, there was no bond.  To have a relationship - whether friendship or otherwise - you have to have truth.  And you guys didn't.  He is a liar, a creep, a cheat.  You owe him nothing.  Don't respond to him.  See him for what he is.  I'm sorry you wasted your time and emotions on him, and I'm sure it hurts like hell to realize it was all a lie, but you have to see him for what he is.

#20 lilmissmars

Posted 30 December 2012 - 09:16 AM

QUOTE (tomyoda @ 29/12/2012, 01:29 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
My family and friends know what he meant to me, for all of those months. They know that he is what inspired me to lose 17 kilos, to exercise every day and to stop biting my nails. They tell me that people come into your life for a reason, and that he has served his purpose in mine.


This is what really stuck out to me in your OP.
I actually fully agree with your family. He came into your life and inspired you to better yourself. Now it's sounds like that inspiration is gone/ perhaps no longer needed and you should probably just stop contact now as it sounds like it is becoming detrimental to you on an emotional level.

That's probably not much help. But we'll done on loosing 17kgs and stopping your nail biting!




1 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 1 guests, 0 anonymous users

 

Video: 10-week-old baby sounds like she says 'I love you'

It’s mixed in amongst garbled baby talk, but this 10-week-old's apparent attempt at telling her parents that she loves them has made her an internet star.

I only enjoyed pregnancy after booking my caesarean

To say I became obsessed is something of an understatement. Everywhere I went I found cause to be reminded of my impending pain.

When your bundle doesn't bring immediate joy

One mum says joy is very a personal feeling and expecting all new mums to feel it in the months after their baby born may do more harm than good.

Lessons learned from my toddler

Blogger Kiran Chug explains why she is going to let her toddler make more decisions for himself.

Family welcomes first baby girl in more than 100 years

The Silverton family has heard the phrase "it's a girl" for the first time in four generations.

When a community of kindness steps in

In future when someone I care for, or even someone I barely know, is experiencing a difficult time, I will not overthink it. I'll follow my heart.

Mum in Business: Jac Bowie

Jac Bowie is the founder of Business in Heels, one of the fastest growing women’s networking events in Australia. She shares her story, including how she juggles work with a young family, and ways to work smarter.

What not to say to a mum of twins

Being a mum of identical twin boys stirs up great interest and fascination. It also opens itself up to nosy, invasive questions, as well as huge assumptions.

The mums suing over unplanned babies

A mother-of-five who calls her two youngest sons "miracle babies" is just one of many mums seeking financial compensation for their children's unplanned conceptions.

Video: Dad sings 'Hallelujah' to his daughter every year

It's a gorgeous song to begin with, but this dad's version of Hallelujah, sung for his young daughter, is especially touching.

Constipation in babies when starting solids

While starting solids can be frustrating and messy (yet also fun!), introducing solids can also play havoc on tiny digestive systems.

Parents reunited with baby snatched from hospital

A mother whose newborn baby was snatched from hospital has spoken of her joy and relief at getting her daughter back.

In defence of the bumpie

Are bumpies - bump selfies - really "exhibitionism of the weirdest kind"?

Life on the other side of the fence: Why I'm child-free and quite content

Acknowledging that motherhood isn't a bed of roses – to begrudge lack of time, sleep, money and spontaneity – is sacrilegious and a no-no, especially by mother superior-types.

'Go the F*** to Sleep' author's new book for frustrated parents

A sequel is coming soon to the 2011 hit book 'Go the F*** to Sleep' - and this time, it's about mealtimes.

Win a $200 Pumpkin Patch voucher

Fill out this quick survey and tell us in 25 words or less your best pregnancy or parenting tip - you'll go in the draw to win a $200 Pumpkin Patch voucher.

Download now: Essential Kids Activity Finder app

Got bored kids? Quickly find the best activities for kids wherever you are in Australia with the Essential Kids app.

 
Advertisement
 
Advertisement
 
 
 

What's hot on EB

Losing yourself to motherhood

While watching your baby grow into a unique little person is exciting and wondrous, the intensity of meeting everyone else?s needs can ever so sneakily overtake your own needs for self-care.

Tearing during delivery: the facts

Almost all women will experience bruising, grazing or tearing after a vaginal birth. Depending on the degree of tearing, there are various treatments available.

6 tips for a day out with a baby and toddler

Outings can be lots of fun with the kids, but there are inevitable challenges. Here's some information about days out to help you be a little more prepared.

Why I invited a dozen people to watch my son's birth

I sent invitations on burgundy scrapbooking paper stamped with a field of poppies, and told each person why I wanted him or her there. I warned that there would be nudity.

Getting labour started: tips for a natural induction

When your baby?s due date comes and goes without so much as a pop - let alone a bang - it can be disheartening. Mums and a doula share their stories of natural inductions.

7 mistakes old hands make with new babies

As I sat across the table from my friend ? me, a seasoned mother of three; her, a brand new mum ? I thought of all the mistakes an old-hand parent can make when visiting a newborn baby.

That's my boy: a dad's diary of the first 4 months

Unbearable anxiety, unspeakable joy, constant exhaustion and bouts of frustration ... The many shocks of first-time fatherhood resound in a dad's diary of his son's early months.

One of the most important things a new mum can do

Finances may not be as cute as a newborn, but with many women?s working arrangements changing post-baby, monetary matters need attention too.

In defence of the bumpie

Are bumpies really "exhibitionism of the weirdest kind", as one writer has claimed?

Personalised baby gifts

We've scoured the internet to find gorgeous personalised keepsakes and nursery decor to record baby name and dates. They make great gifts for christenings, name days and birthdays! (All prices in AU.)

 

My Wellbeing

Making time for me

We look at your wellbeing, covering health, relationships, beauty and fashion, mind and body.

 
Advertisement
 
 
Essential Baby and Essential Kids is the place to find parenting information and parenting support relating to conception, pregnancy, birth, babies, toddlers, kids, maternity, family budgeting, family travel, nutrition and wellbeing, family entertainment, kids entertainment, tips for the family home, child-friendly recipes and parenting. Try our pregnancy due date calculator to determine your due date, or our ovulation calculator to predict ovulation and your fertile period. Our pregnancy week by week guide shows your baby's stages of development. Access our very active mum's discussion groups in the Essential Baby forums or the Essential Kids forums to talk to mums about conception, pregnancy, birth, babies, toddlers, kids and parenting lifestyle. Essential Baby also offers a baby names database of more than 22,000 baby names, popular baby names, boys' names, girls' names and baby names advice in our baby names forum. Essential Kids features a range of free printable worksheets for kids from preschool years through to primary school years. For the latest baby clothes, maternity clothes, maternity accessories, toddler products, kids toys and kids clothing, breastfeeding and other parenting resources, check out Essential Baby and Essential Kids.