What to do?

lovehadleyMarch 27, 2009

My DD and I just returned home after having been gone for 13 days. We spent a week in FL with my dad and then flew from there to an island in the Caribbean where my mom's parents spend the winters.

DH and SS were supposed to go but at the last minute, DH became so overwhelmed with work and said he just couldn't go. :(

So DD and I had our vacation and came home on Wed. night to H*E*L*L.

I opened up my email inbox to a nasty email from BM saying she is sick of me controlling my husband and trying to make decisions about HER son and I need to mind my business, etc. I had NO IDEA what she was taling about! She and I have been pretty cordial, even friendly, for the last 6 months.

Well, it turns out that while I was gone my DH decided to bring up the possibility of SS staying back a year in school next year. This has been an issue/sore point for them for a year now. When SS started 1st this year, DH wanted him to repeat K, and the GAL even said that would be good, but then BM flipped about it, and went and enrolled him in 1st in her district...and then the whole court battle ensued, with BM finally settling in December. SS will start 2nd grade in our district in August.

He has really been struggling, somewhat academically, but more behaviorally/socially this year, just as he did in K. His teacher said he is very young---like a young kindergartener and he is in 1st. DH feels VERY strongly about him repeating 1st. I can't say I think it's a bad idea at all, but it certainly is not MY idea and I have not even really discussed it with DH at all. It truly is DH's "thing."

Somehow BM came to the conclusion that I am the driving force behind this.

I should have just ignored her email but I wrote back a very neutral, polite email saying that I was not involved in the decision, that I respected this decison as one that she and DH would make alone, and I said that it didn't affect me at all what they decided. I said my job is to handle decisions regarding my DD and I leave decisions regarding SS up to DH/BM. I apologized for any misconception she had that I was trying to influence my husband.

DH read the email and felt it was fine. Well, somehow it struck a chord with her and she wrote back saying it is obvious I do not care about SS, and have no love or compassion for him---and if I did, I would be advocating for him to NOT stay back. AUUUGHHHH. And that it is obvious that DH is comparing his son to my DD, and that is putting unfair pressure on SS.

Then she said she will no longer be speaking to me at functions, is blocking my email address, etc. And that my marriage and DD are far from perfect???? (not sure what that has to do with anything?)

DH thinks BM is incredibly stressed---their landlord terminated their month-to-month lease, giving them 30 days to find a place and move out. The house they selected is 10 minutes FARTHER away from us and the school SS will attend in the fall. Her Dh is still working out of state. DH thinks she is also off her anti-depressants b/c he said she has just been incredibly irritable and hard to deal with lately. Truly, she has horrendous mood swings where she just goes off in the deep end of rage----she lashes out, calls people names, hits below the belt, and then is FINE the next day.


SS's birthday is next week and his class party is on Sunday. I am DREADING this. I used to not be "allowed" to attend his bdays or other functions, per BM saying she was going to "claw my eyes out." I finally went to his 5th bday and it was HORRIBLE--BM and her entire family refused to speak to me. They had arranged chairs at a table for the adults and when I came to sit down, there was not one for me. I was not "allowed" to stand near him when he had his bday cake and blew out the candles. She told DH I was not allowed to be in any pictures. I tried to write down the presents (what was from who) and BM snapped at me to not do that as it was "not a baby shower" and I was "not his mother." Those were the only words she said to me the entire time. She and her sister stood there and snickered at me the whole party and later that day, she sent me an email saying I looked "fat and dirty" at the party and "couldn't I have worn something other than jeans to her son's party?" (Mind you--it was at a gymnastics center and I wore jeans and a nice black shirt, and she was in 3 in. heels.) WHATEVER.

Last year we were on better terms so the party was *okay,* awkward but okay.

I just don't feel I can handle this again. HELP. I told DH I didn't want to go, and he got angry, saying I have to go for SS. I guess I do but I am sick over this.

I know, I know--it shouldn't matter. But I just hate feeling so alone and outcast during these things. DH has no family---it will be BM, her parents, her sister, her aunt and uncle, etc. The kicker is---they will be nice as pie to DH and will give me the silent treatment. It's easy for ALL of them to blame me for everything--and make me out to be the bad guy.

I voiced all this to DH and he promised to be supportive and stay near me---but that's not really fair to him or SS, b/c SS will be wanting him AND his mom to be out bouncing with him, going down slides, etc. DH can say what he says but at the end of the day--I know it will be me standing there by myself, feeling and looking like a total outsider. That might sound immature or insecure---but I don't want to feel like that!

We are having a family party for SS on Sat. night w/pizza and my mom and her husband, cake, presents, etc.

Do you think it's neccessary for me to go to this thing on Sunday? I honestly doubt SS would care....I don't know. DH said it looks bad if I don't go.


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I know how you feel, this day should be about your ss not bm and her crap... Go to the party and have fun if you stay on the sidelines she will expect to control you every year. I hope your ss enjoys his day GOOD LUCK

    Bookmark   March 27, 2009 at 10:29AM
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I'd ignore her comments. She's not rational.

Remind herself that everything in her life is failing: her marriage, her son, her living conditions, career, etc... And your life is going well. It may even be SS likes you and she's been lashing out at him lately. I guess it sucks to be her. Just be grateful you aren't her.

I wouldn't go to the bday party. No point in being abused(altho if there had been a chair for everyone but me, I'd have happily sat on my DH's lap; bet they would have provided a chair right quick). And I don't think DH should go.

SS can have a bday party with mom's side and a bday party with dad's side. Lots and lots of divorced kids do just fine with this arrangement. It's not going to ruin SS's bday because Dad's not there; he can just remember that there's a equally nice party with dad and stepmom and maybe his friends or maybe at C. CHeeses or an amusement park, whatever. I think this arrangement is more the norm for divorced families, and the kids adjust quickly and do fine.

Sorry it has to be so hard.

    Bookmark   March 27, 2009 at 10:55AM
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Totally agree Bucyn, I also think you and DH shouldnt go Hadley...I know a lot of people will be weighing in on go, united front, bigger person, smile, be gracious, but WHY???The child does have 2 families now, that is the reality, he doesnt have to pretend at a birthday party that mommy and daddy are still together for my birthday, when mommy treats you like a piece of garbage.And yeah, you ll all have to be in the same space for a wedding, or graduation, but those are usually LARGE spaces, I see nothing wrong with keeping your distance for your own sanity...BM sounds like this is a Ball is in my court, loving to see you sweat Hadley situation, why set yourself up for this? You can tell from the email, you made DH make school decision, after your email, you dont CARE about SS, she is and will always put you in a no win situation...Dont go, Hadley, and try to get your DH to see you ll both be better off celebrating with SS alone without these toxic people around.....

    Bookmark   March 27, 2009 at 11:20AM
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I dont see any problem with Lovehadley not going, but I think it is wrong to ever discourage a parent from seeing his biokids. Dad and love can give SS their own party, but there is no reason he cant go to both.

    Bookmark   March 27, 2009 at 11:26AM
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I agree with bucyn..... especially about sitting on his lap! LMAO

If your DH goes without you, he will be upset that you are not there. Your ss will feel it too because kids have a way of sensing their parent's feelings. If you go with him, it will be uncomfortable for you (and your SS will feel that as well and it will make his day uncomfortable too). If DH doesn't go, what will happen? Will BM talk trash about him (and you)? Will she spend the day blaming you for him not being there? It sounds like she would... SO WHAT???? If she wants to ruin your ss's birthday with her crap, there's NOTHING you can do about it. It's wonderful if everyone gets along to have a joint party where the kid can have everyone together, getting along. If that's not the case, then he's going to be more comfortable with two parties, where he doesn't have to worry about two adults that don't like each other. No matter how much everyone tries to distract him with games, toys and cake, he will still feel the underlying hostility and be uncomfortable... especially if he later hears either parent make comments about the other, which probably would happen.

Tell your DH it would be more comfortable for ss if he celebrates with a small separate gathering where he doesn't have to worry about mom getting upset at your presence or lack of concern. (not saying you lack concern but BM clearly has a problem with you and I agree, it probably has more to do with her life than you) But, I would at the very least, remove myself from the situation and not play into her drama. She wants you to react to her email and engage in battle with her because something in her life is wrong and she needs a distraction and what better way than to engage in a battle with you? Don't let her goad you into a fight and/or to be a part of ruining SS's birthday. It may be ruined no matter what you do, but I wouldn't want to be a part of it. The fact that she sent you these emails recently is a clear indication that it won't be a peaceful, relaxing day for anyone.

    Bookmark   March 27, 2009 at 11:40AM
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Some husbands wouldnt want their beloved wife disrespected or mistreated for 10 minutes...Junior will survive being deprived of dads company that day for 2 hours...Why, he can even make that 2 hours up another day if he wants to, like maybe extending his private birthday by 2 hours....

    Bookmark   March 27, 2009 at 11:46AM
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I agree with dotz.

BTW, love, no matter what you do, she will find fault. Your jeans were not good enough, but if you wore a dress, she probably would have said 'your not going to a wedding!'

kkny, it won't hurt ss to have dad miss a party that is basically for his school mates... it's a kid party and unless BM makes a point of complaining dad isn't there, he probably won't think too much about it. He will be playing with his friends. The idea that dad could make up time is a good one... I don't hear anyone discouraging a dad from seeing his kid.

There are situations where having everyone there really can't be avoided... graduations, weddings, and the birth of grandchildren. But birthdays, holidays, etc. can be celebrated separately. If having the parents in the same room make the child feel uncomfortable, what is more important... the right of the parent to be there or the right of the child to feel comfortable? If the child will truly be comfortable and wants both parents there, then I think the parents should suck it up and go.

    Bookmark   March 27, 2009 at 11:57AM
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I still think it is never right for a stepparent to discourage a parent from seeing his child. Why cant he leave his wife home for 2 hours? I assume she doesnt need a babysitter.

    Bookmark   March 27, 2009 at 12:29PM
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I found out a bit more about what went on while I was out of town.

Last weekend, BM called on a Sun. evening at 6 pm to talk to SS (it was DH's weekend) and she was extremely drunk. She started crying and DH told her she couldn't talk to their son under those circumstances. He told me she became irrational with him and was shouting/crying, just having a big old tantrum, and he told her he would not allow her to affect their son with her obvious drunkenness and upset. He told her to call back in the AM.

She called the next day and was sobered up and sobbed to DH about how she can't control her drinking, needs to go to rehab, etc. (GOD, I wish he had gotten that on tape!) He suggsted she go to some AA meetings and she said she tried that months ago but she has nothing in common with "those people."

So stuff was obviously brewing while I was gone. This is what BM usually does when she is unhappy with her life---turns around and lashes out at other people, usually me or my DH. The problem is, she HAS to get along with my DH for the most part, so it becomes easier for her to direct all her anger and unhappiness at me. I can't believe I didn't see that connection again. Her life is not going well, she lashes out at me. I guess I thought we had kind of moved past that but oh well.

I'm not going to the party, I really don't care if DH likes it or not. When we married, he promised to keep me sheltered from the drama as much as possible, and I see this as DRAMA.

We were going to celebrate on Sat. night with my mom and her husband. I think instead we will celebrate on Sunday night. That way, when DH is at SS's school party in the afternoon, I can be home decorating the house for the little family get-together. Perfect. :)

    Bookmark   March 27, 2009 at 12:29PM
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I don't need a babysitter and I don't have a problem with my DH going at all. I do think SS would probably be upset if his dad were not there. Even if he didn't notice, BM would be sure to point it out to him. :( So DH will surely go and that's fine with me. I will probably just send my DD with him. I know she and SS would be devastated if she couldn't be there.

This works out fine because then I can decorate the dining room for our little family party and SS will be surprised when he gets home to see the streamers, balloons, table, etc.

There is of course a part of me that wishes my DH could stick up for me and say I will not allow my wife to be treated this way but I married into this and I guess that is the price to pay, coming second at times. I don't like it--but I understand that it would hurt SS if he weren't there.

    Bookmark   March 27, 2009 at 1:04PM
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I dont see it as you coming second not going to the bday party -- its just a different focus to the event.

    Bookmark   March 27, 2009 at 1:23PM
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I think it's wrong to bring adult issues to a child's event. All adults should be cordial and respectful. All Adults. The evil mother in law, the dreaded sister... etc. If they show up, it's for the kid. Period. Leave it at the door folks.

The Bio-Mom showed incredibly tacky behavior and poor hostess skills. Everyone should have a seat. No guests should have their attire commented upon.

Stepmother, when you are not throwing the party for your s-kid, your guest status is akin to a friend of a friend. Behave accordingly. Be polite, offer to assist when you arrive, help when asked but stay on the sidelines. Offer a polite thank you for inviting us when you leave.

If mom is not willing to be cordial to dad's new wife, they should have separate parties for the kids. Parents are not the focus at kids parties anyway, or they shouldn't be.

Love, I think you should go to the party. Bring something to keep you occupied, knitting, a book, something. If there is no chair, your DH should offer you "his" chair, then he should ask BM where an extra chair is. Bio-mom must be very insecure if she is commenting on your clothes. She should be glad her son has a step mom who is adult enough to participate in his life despite her toxic behavior. The more adults a child has in their life who love them and teach them the better. Remind your DH of his promise of shielding you from drama, then pick up your chin, paste on a grin, and go to your SS's party. It's just a few hours. Make it a game of how to outwit her insecurity with grace. Don't take it personal.

And even if you "looked fat" (which I'm sure you were appropriately attired) she "looked like a jerk". I'd rather hang with "fatty" than "jerk-face" any day.

    Bookmark   March 27, 2009 at 1:23PM
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Oh shut up KKNY.

That is PRECISELY what BM wants him to do. Go with out his wife. Instead of haggling the step who isn't being irrational why not haggle the bio parent for being such a spaz? It is equally moms fault if daddy doesn't go if not MORE since she is the one insistent on making SM feel totally uncomfortable.

Take my advice form someone who has been there Love. Niether of you go. Do your own thing for SS and make sure he KNOWS you are sorry you won't be there at moms party but you guys will have a BLAST at dads. The kid won't care as long as he gets his presents!

We stopped doing joint holidays and parties with BM when we realized every occasion was totally miserable. It caused fights between J and I because she was awful to me and told him I wasn't invited etc.etc. He refused to go without me so she'd cave and then it would be GROSS the entire time. You had better believe the girls could FEEL the tension. It's much better for all involved (including the girls) that we started doing things seperate.

If hubs goes alone she will make you feel cruddy in hopes you won't attend every single time theres a function. COUNT ON IT! Divorce means seperated so do seperate functions. Make a statement that you two will not be manipulated or you'll be in for arguments a plenty ahead.

    Bookmark   March 27, 2009 at 1:25PM
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"I'd rather hang with "fatty" than "jerk-face" any day."

LOL. The funny thing is--it is BM who is totally insecure. Not sure why she calls me fat because I am 5'4" and weigh about 117-120 lbs. I run almost every day, swam competitively for most of my school career, etc. :) I am actually a pretty small person.

    Bookmark   March 27, 2009 at 1:50PM
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"Stepmother, when you are not throwing the party for your s-kid, your guest status is akin to a friend of a friend"

But that's what gets sticky...technically, we ARE sharing in the "throwing" of the party. This is the FIRST year that BM has agreed to pay half the cost of the party. In years past, DH has paid for everything. LAst year, BM brought the cake and goodie bags, and we paid for the bounce place, plus for pizza, soda, and we also brought balloons, character-themed table settings, etc.

I am TOTALLY happy to stay out of it entirely this year, though.

    Bookmark   March 27, 2009 at 1:54PM
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Love, she name calls because she hopes you are as insecure as she is. You are NOT fat and there is NO WAY anyone that heard her say that and has seen you could or would agree... unless they were anorexic.

Even though DH is springing for half the cost of the party so technically he is also throwing it, I would still bow out and let BM be the hostess to that party and do your own thing. We all can't assume to know what BM will do or say, whether your husband goes or not, but my guess is that nothing is going to make her happy. If you don't go, she will complain you don't care. If you do go... who knows what she'll say. But, personally I'd be leery of planning anything to follow a busy party day... ss may be tired and grumpy. I know that I'm exhausted after a kid's party and I don't spend the day jumping and playing... it seems like a lot for a 6 year old.

Coincidentally, we are having a similar situation this weekend. Sunday is SD's birthday and BM is sending her mom to pick up SD in the morning & they will keep her all day. BM hasn't said that she's throwing her a party. We are planning to do something with her on Saturday, with DH's parents and brother's family. Last year, I made her a party for her school mates and BM had a problem because I didn't invite her. BM's mom showed up to make sure she announced that she can't stay because she wasn't invited. DH offered to BM to take SD on her actual birthday all day and she declined. So, sometimes it's not about the child, it's about the battle. This year, I am not getting involved in it at all. You can't change BM, but you can change what YOU do.

    Bookmark   March 27, 2009 at 2:20PM
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My dad and stepmom once helped me financially throw a party for my dd. Not plan. Not execute. Then SM walked around and basked in the glory of "her" party. I let her. Thing is, she looked foolish to anyone who knew what was going on. And anyone who didn't, I didn't care about anyway. Same with Bio-mom. She's only making herself look bad.

If you are the ones paying, why aren't there enough chairs? It sounds like your DH needs to stand up for you. I'd start saying "thank you for your concern" and "I appreciate your input" when she snaps that you shouldn't be writing the names of gift-givers down. Then continue what you are doing. Let her be the hostess, but quietly, respectfully stand your ground as an honored guest.

This needs to be nipped in the bud. I saw your picture, and you are darling. No wonder she is so mad at you!

Maybe next year the party needs to be a sleepover or movies rather than a big blowout. Then she can be on her own for throwing a party where she is queen.

    Bookmark   March 27, 2009 at 3:00PM
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I think the way bm treated you at the previous b-day party was just childish! If it were me I would go with DH and put on my best smiley face and wear thick skin to the party! I would show her that I am not bothered by her! And I would stick by dh's side and make nice with ss and his friends.

Then next year, when ss is going to school near you I would plan a big party with friends from school on your terms. Have DH just not tell bm about it! If she finds out right before or after the party I would have him tell her that her treatment of you has made in uncomfortable for you to have joint parties and that from then on she will need to have a seperate party with her family for ss. And I would make sure she did not have details on the place, time, or date of the event!

As for repeating a grade I would say next year is the time to do so. He will be in a new school and nobody will know that he was held back. If you wait and next year he does poorly in 2nd grade and needs to be held back all the kids the following year will be more likely to find out which could really do a number on his self esteem!

    Bookmark   March 27, 2009 at 3:09PM
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I know you dont want or feel like going considering what has happened. And most likely SS wouldnt' care all that much.
BUT ....BM is wrong in what she said, she's lost it of course and is using you as a scape goat.
Fact 1.
You guys are going half and half on the party. So be there.
Fact 2.
She does not want you there. SO BE THERE!
Go have a good time.
Ignore her family and her and speak with your friends and family there. Enjoy the show...make sure you kiss your husband alot and hugs and yes a little lap sitting wouldn't hurt.
Bm in this case is
1. insecure
2. totally out of line to blame you ( in my situation bm accused me of interfering when she couldnt get my dh to agree on something with scheduals so she automatically blamed me adn would get the kids involved....sent her a nice legal letter clearly stating what i thought and what i will do the next time she opens her mouth....she';s been quiet these years and its nice)
3. Has mental issues from what i've read.
Stand your ground as a human being , as your husband wife and as a person who is involved in the life of your SS and she's is just gonnna have to stuff for the day of her son's bday. She's not the only person in sons life

    Bookmark   March 27, 2009 at 3:42PM
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It's sometimes a timely reminder that adults should be adults. "Being there" or "showing your defiance" is just adding fuel to the fire.

I think (no disrepect intended) be a grown-up and just don't go, I can understand dh should be there for his son, and you should calmly discuss with him that you need him to support you.

Remember wise adults telling us as kids to "walk away" when someone's being an a$$? We should follow their advice and not be tempted to be petty as some are advocating. You are not going to 'convert' biomom or cause her to have an epiphany. If you apply that litmus test to your actions, your path will be clearer.

Don't forget the incredibly harmful effect of ss watching mom go off at you. Kids learn by example. My youngest daughter, and her older sister to some extent, followed their mother's verbal abuse of me and the youngest never got past it, just assumed that's how you should treat dad.

Never buy into it. Take the high road. Treat others as you would have them treat you and NEVER say anything bad or otherwise about her to ss. He will figure out who is the nutjob on his own, if and only if you don't play.

I like the idea of you having your own party ready for him at home. The contrast will no doubt be clear.

If bm behaves herself if you aren't there, better for ss so he doesn't have to see anything bad. It's harmful to kids. Adults should show restraint, but it seems we're a world of kids now, even the adults.

If you are forced to be in the same place as her, ALWAYS be charming and on your best behaviour. If you refuse to bite, she/her family will look pretty silly. I still think avoiding her as much as possible is the right course of action.

Another thing you should calmly discuss with DH is what to do if she starts badmouthing you if you're not there, options including him quietly, politely but firmly telling her that he and ss will not stick around to listen, and follow through with it, since it sounds like he has custody?

    Bookmark   March 27, 2009 at 4:03PM
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"I think (no disrepect intended) be a grown-up and just don't go..."

I disagree. You should "be a grown-up" and go to the party. Treat her as you would a disabled person who may not know the impact of their actions. With love and respect but not letting them walk all over you. She is "emotionally challenged". Treat her as such. Put your dignified face on and be the strong wife and stepmother you are.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2009 at 4:23PM
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be there.... I have been there done that in exactly the same way ... all of her people there judging you whispering about you making you feel more uncomfortable than sitting on a million needles could. But, it is not about any of them. It is about you your family and your ss... I could recount the number of times I felt completely alone and and outsider at the bday parties but it would be pointless. The fact it I wanted to be there for my step kids and now they know that L is there for them no matter what. It sucks and it feels... well there just arent words to describe how it feels... but is feels bad but it is a moment out of your life that disappears afterwords for you but means the world to your kids. I think in the long run that is actually how I gained respect from DH's family (who were very pro BM in the beginning) by just showing up and being graceful and polite. Even now more recently we have been the ones to throw the bday party completely and then extended an invite to BM.... she shows and invites her friends without contributing anything whatsoever.... she tries to be the MOM but I and everyone else knows whats up without making a big deal about it.

You dont need to worry about her or her families nonsense ... but you do need to be there for your children step or not.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2009 at 2:44AM
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i completely disagree with most people here. I don't think having mutual parties is a great idea. I get along wiht X and yet i would not have mutual parties. and if you don't get along why having this torture? i don't get it! nobody is obligated to attend parties at X's or your partner's X's house. no such obligations. it is uncomfortable most of the time. i would host a separate party.

no matter how much you love your children/SCs, you do not have to tolerate company of Xspouses. they are X for a reason. If I would love having a party wiht X, i would still be married to him.

No, love, you do not have to go, but you have to do soemthing for SS like take him out. I also think that your DH doesn't have to go. you guys can host your own party for SS.

    Bookmark   March 30, 2009 at 1:20PM
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"No, love, you do not have to go, but you have to do soemthing for SS like take him out. I also think that your DH doesn't have to go. you guys can host your own party for SS"

I think what people are misunderstanding here is that this party is SS's "school party."

We DO do separate family celebrations and always have. Last year, for example, my mom and her husband came over on SS's actual bday and we had pizza, cake, and opened presents; we are doing the same thing this year, as well. BM does her own family thing with her parents and sister, as well---they took him out to dinner last year and will do something similar this year, I am sure.

But every year he also has a party at a fun place and invites his classmates. BM and DH both want to be there understandably.

Just wanted to clarify that.

    Bookmark   March 30, 2009 at 2:31PM
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On a topic of weight. even if one is overweight, how can anyone dare to comment on that???

It does make a difference that ti is school party but I still see no need for that (attending parties together, school or not). Unless it is a graduation or a wedding no need for that. especially if you don't get along. smart of you not to go.

as about holding children back. to my knowledge it is proven that holding back in K or 1st grade helps because some kids mature later. but holding them back later in life is damaging and not helping much, so he needs to be held back now if ever.

    Bookmark   March 30, 2009 at 9:47PM
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I can come at this from the other side of the fence.
Each year we have a family party, BMom does a dinner or something, and we throw SD's friend party. Each year I invite BMom, and each year, save one, she has come for at least part of it. Last year, as most of you know, we shared a hotel hide a bed for SD's party. I'm sure it's not easy for BM to be there though I certainly go out of my way to be warm and welcoming (she even gets a grown up goodie bag!) but I'm sure she must feel like an outsider. Yet, she is there every year. I know your situation is much worse, but I urge you to consider going. There will always be joint things in SS's life. Will you miss his wedding, too? If you set the precedent now that she can bully you into missing important dates she will continue to do so all through his life. Stand strong and firm, be gracious and just walk away from the crap. You will be a stronger person for it, and your SS will see that. After a while, others will too. Your sane makes BM's crazy more noticeable.

Don't give up on the times you deserve to share because of crazy.

    Bookmark   March 31, 2009 at 1:01AM
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I still do not understand why both parents have to celebrate holidays together. Plenty of exspouses do not get along. That's why they are divorced. If we believe that people should stay at the same party for the sake of their children, then maybe we should determine that exspouses should stay together permanently for the sake of children. Where do you draw boundaries?

Weddings and graduations are very special events, it is really an exception. Why do you even compare? But annual birthdays aren't a big deal, not big enough to force people to share the same table, room, meal etc.

    Bookmark   March 31, 2009 at 1:23PM
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"But annual birthdays aren't a big deal, not big enough to force people to share the same table, room, meal etc.'

I get what you're saying, finedreams, and I agree to a certain extent. There is no way we (DH & I) would ever invite BM to a bday celebration at our home, or to a holiday event, etc.

We have my mom and her husband coming over on Sunday for pizza, cake and presents---would not DREAM of inviting BM. Likewise, BM is having a get-together for her son this weekend, as well, for her family. DH is not invited to that.

But---BOTH BM and DH want to be at SS's school party. As a parent, I can certainly understand that. I can't imagine not being at my DD's party with her classmates.

It's just the kind of thing that is joint---SS wants to have a party with his friends and, naturally, both his parents want to be there to see him have his special day. I understand it.

    Bookmark   March 31, 2009 at 1:33PM
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Its a school party???? oh ...well then , you can DITCH IT! and let both bio parents enjoy their son partying....you dont have to prove anything.
I thought it was a bday party you put cash into and felt you being shoved out due to bm's behaviour.
THis is a school party...so...yah...no need to prove anything there. Leave them be and have a relaxing day with no headaches!

    Bookmark   March 31, 2009 at 3:04PM
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So your child gets three parties? One with Mom, one with Dad and one with School?

Wow. I take cupcakes to school, and the students celebrate together. This is a little extreme on the partying, IMO.

    Bookmark   March 31, 2009 at 3:17PM
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love, I'm not trying to be sexist, but throughout the years whenever my kids attended birthday parties with kids from school, I cannot remember one time that a father hosted or was present at the party. I'm not saying it doesn't happen & I know that my kids were raised by me 100% so of course, their dad's were never there... but usually it's the mom that is into parties and stuff. I don't know about anyone else, but that has been my experience. In fact, as I'm writing this I am thinking back to when I lived with my exBF... any parties for his kids where school kids were invited, he was always at work. He would celebrate with family but never came to the ones where it was a bunch of kids. Okay, I have to admit, now that I am thinking about it, last year DH was there for SD's party but it was at our home and his nephew was one of the kids but he was the only guy there. He ended up sticking at the BBQ all day and running around, not really AT the party. I just wouldn't think most guys would be that interested in a kid party. I could be wrong.

Hope it goes well no matter what happens.

    Bookmark   March 31, 2009 at 3:17PM
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"love, I'm not trying to be sexist, but throughout the years whenever my kids attended birthday parties with kids from school, I cannot remember one time that a father hosted or was present at the party"


My DD goes to about 3-4 parties a year and has since she was in preschool. Dads really are there more often than not, in my experience. I guess it just depends on trends in one's general area. My dad was always at my parties when I was growing up--he was the one behind the video camera!

Silversword, three parties does seem pretty extreme when you look at it that way, but we can't control what BM does any more than she can control what we do. When I say a "party" at our house, I mean something VERY simple---pizza, a small homemade cake, some balloons and a few presents. I guess it is all what you're used to. When I was growing up, my mom made a BIG deal out of our birthdays---we always got to have a big class party, in addition to a celebration with grandparents, close family members, etc.

    Bookmark   March 31, 2009 at 3:24PM
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Oh party actually is at school (what kind of party is that? never heard of parties at school, just like cupcakes or what?) So why do you need to be there then? Plus it is workday, who can attend these kind of parties? Even if one parent is free, the other one works. So DH takes day off? What about BM? i always worked and could never attend parties during the day. And why do both parents have to be there?

    Bookmark   March 31, 2009 at 4:15PM
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Hi Love,
That makes a little more sense. :) My dd got cupcakes at school and at after school activity, theater movie and bowling and pizza and later that night home movies with special dessert with friends and will go out tonight for her "birthday dinner" at her favorite restaurant. (I've not been able to fit it in, and it's one that we can't make reservations for so have to go on a school night because there will be less people, and I have to allocate an hour of waiting, which I dread and put off!)

In my experience dads are there at parties as much as moms. Sometimes only dad is there, just depends on who is able to make it.

I stick with my original statement. Stand your ground, stay in the "background" (I'm sure you're not an attention hog anymore than you're a sloppy, bad dressing fatty, but you know what I mean!). Don't let BM control the situation or this trend will continue. Leave the hanger in your shirt if you need help keeping your shoulders straight! And go!

    Bookmark   March 31, 2009 at 4:18PM
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"Oh party actually is at school"

No, no, no. The party is at a bounce-house/tumbling type place. His whole class has been invited.

    Bookmark   March 31, 2009 at 4:21PM
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