The answer to Your question is in Your question :
"Should I be leaving this relationship or keep trying to make it work?"
It comes down to one or the other - either, or.....
You've already tried to make it work (4 years) and it isn't working - So, You either stay and keep on doing what You've done......or, You leave.
That being said, I'm sorry this has not/is not working out the way You hoped but what You see is what You're getting and that is not likely to change, not after 4 years of this. This is Your "red flag", You need to realize this is how it's going to be - so You must decide if You can continue to live with the situation or You cannot.
How old are you? Him? His son?
Spending a night once or twice a month with you: why would you need it to be when he has shared custody with his son? Does his son stay over 30 days & nights a month with him?? Just how much of the month's days and nights, does he stay with his dad. Shared custody usually means partial one way or the other, though one may have most of the time. Or perhaps I misunderstood.
The son's coping with separated (divorced?) parents, I think it's natural enough that he'd now stick like glue to the one that's present.
Respect earrns respect. I think the starting point is to respect yourself so much that you do not do anything for his son you do not honestly want to do on its own merit from your perspective (and freely without expectation of earning return favours or respect or whatever). And that you respect others consistently, and only then expect respect in return.
So why aren't you asking for your boyfriend to sped the night on his nights off from his son? Shared custody means he has times without his son. See your boyfriend then. His son needs him. I wouldn't interfere with that and would say that perhaps your resentment of his being a great father to his child would indicate that this relationship isn't a great fit for you.
But divorced parents with shared custody are without there child half the time so am not sure why this is an issue. good luck
How old are you, your bf and his son? This is probably playing a huge role in all this. For example, if the child is 16 and you are 21 he will not see you as an adult or authoritative...........he will see you more as a peer, so he will be resentful that someone he sees as a peer is trying to tell him what to do and/or reprimand him for this and that.
Your bf needs to be setting the tone here in regards to this situation between his son and you and it sounds like your bf isn't really supporting you or validating your feelings through all this and has no plans of doing so. If he did he would of done this a long time ago.
"My boyfriend has shared custody with the mother of his child and his child refuses to go to his mothers when I want to spend some time with my boyfriend and only him."...............Confused. Do you mean he refuses to go to his mother's when he is scheduled to go when you want his father to come over OR do you mean he refuses to go to his mother's when you want his father to come over? Big difference between these two situations.
"......... I love my boyfriend very much but I am finding it harder and harder to try a relationship when my feelings are never considered"............Anyone feeling this way in a relationship should probably reconsider being in the relationship regardless whether he/she is dealing with a child from a partner or not.
This will not change by sticking around.
.....even if Your BoyFriend starts spending nights with You when His Son is away,
there will still be, always be, the dynamic between Your BoyFriend and His Son,
and the Son's disrespect for You will also probably remain
and You feel Your feelings are never considered -
So You still have a decision to make - whether You want to be a part of this or You don't.
I really don't see the dynamic between them 'changing' to suit Your wishes. The Father/Son relationship They have had it's beginning before You existed. Everyone involved will only become unhappier with a situation that no one knows how to change - and perhaps it shouldn't 'change' for them. They are already a 'common demonimator', if You cannot 'fit' in, again to me, that's a red flag.
Understand, I don't think Your wish here is unreasonable, I just think it won't work with Your BoyFriend and His Son to change the way They relate to each other and I think You would find greater happiness elsewhere
sorry let me clarify.
Scheduled time with his mother his son refuses to go to his mothers at all. His son and his mother have a love hate relationship so his son does not want to go to her whatsoever. That being said his son is never "away".
Also, his son will be turning 17.
Useful clarification (contrary to the usual impact on others of shared custody).
Well, I don't see this working out as long as his mother's not able to actively participate in his custody.
This boy is at a critical time in his life. While it feels unfair, he needs his dad and it is right that his dad is there for him. Wish I could snap my fingers and make him be a respectful kid but that is probably a deep and long circumstance for it.
You are better cutting your losses and moving on.
His son stays with him nearly every day and night as he refuses to go to his mothers. My boyfriend and his son's mother parted ways when his son was about 5 years old and he is now almost 17 so it's not a new experience for him. My boyfriend has had 2 relationships in between his sons mother and myself and there was never an issue as my boyfriend demanded his son spend time with his mother. When we first got together his son had scheduled days with his mom as well as every other weekend, and now since he has been getting older does not go to her at all.. maybe once every month or something along those lines when my boyfriend has to work overnight with his volunteering.
Again, this is a vulnerable time in his son's life. That's his priority. Who knows how long he will see this as a priority and it doesn't matter if I, you or anyone else agrees with him that it 'should' be his priority, it is.
You're setting yourself up for constant aggravation by continuing to put yourself in this situation.
He loves his son and feels a duty to him. And that conflicts with having a relationship with you. I would consider finding a new boyfriend. good luck
I have to agree with the above here.
There are 2 things that stick out.
One is that he is not getting along with his mom for some reason, do you know why? The reason why I ask, is this might be a reason he treats you like that. He sounds like he is really attached to his dad and does not want ANY women to come between.
Another thing, is that you could take a break for a bit. The BOY has to turn into a MAN sooner or later and he will be off with his own girlfriends or even with a Job. Maybe just a bit of Time & Patience will help right now.
Whatever it may be, it will work out the way it is suppose to in the long run.
I do wish you the best!
What's the age difference between you and your bf?
It sounds like the parents should be focusing on this child as the child isn't in a good place at this point. It has probably become difficult to make the child visit his mother because the child is older now and the relationship between them is totally strained. The father should be working on repairing that.
Sorry to say, but this isn't a good time for your bf to be involved with anyone romantically.