For Step-Mothers Only

southernsummerMay 16, 2007

This Thread is for Step-mothers only.

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What is the thread about?

I guess I kind of thought this whole forum was for stepparents. I joined three forums when I had the incident on Good Friday w/ my SD who won't move out. I have to admit that afterwards, I was nearly brought to tears when I felt a little ambushed by someone's post. I thought, "Oh great, I'm looking for support but there's no sympathy here!" The other two forums have next to no activity, so I like this one the best, but I hate having to be so careful so as to not offend anyone, etc.

I am a biomom, too, so I do sympathize w/ some of them. Now, I'm not divorced, but I do put myself in their positions and think about how I'd feel if I was replaced p/t by another woman...

Anyway, what's the thread? I'm game for a SM thread.


    Bookmark   May 16, 2007 at 11:44AM
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I think the idea is to avoid "better ex-wives" and "bratty step-children".

Ooops...I'm not supposed to be posting here. Am I going to be taken out back and beat like a red-headed step-child? :)

    Bookmark   May 16, 2007 at 11:50AM
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Don't laugh. My little boy is a red-headed step-child.

    Bookmark   May 16, 2007 at 12:25PM
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awwww...bless his heart

    Bookmark   May 16, 2007 at 12:36PM
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I am a step-mother and a biomom, but I am a completely
different kind of bio-mom from my husband's ex-wife.
In the beginning, I really felt like we had a lot in common, both being single mothers---until I married my husband, and then the gloves came off. It was like she was a different person. In the beginning, she really seemed to appreciate the things that I did for her kids...then she began to resent EVERYTHING. At times, I feel like I am talking to her on these boards.

    Bookmark   May 16, 2007 at 1:11PM
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I'm sorry to hear that. So, when you dated your DH, his ex was civil and grateful? I don't get it.

I was sort of a step-mom to my dear nephews in that I basically raised them for many years during their childhood years. They are now 15, 17, 19 and still in my life, but not like it was. Their mom, my former SIL, wasn't on drugs or a drinker, but she just didn't have a nurturing bone in her body. I had those boys from the time they were 1, 3, almost 5 til they were 8, 10, and 12 seven nights/week and all weekend long (they went home on weekday nights to sleep and I was told to dress them in clothes for the next school day, not pj's!)

Anyway, my efforts, time and money were never acknowledged. She was very jealous and rightfully so. They called me "mommy" and her their "nother mother" to me, but "mom" or "Sweets" to her face. Sweets was a nickname my brother gave her. If my kids did that, I'd be crushed, but I'd have let the door open to that, KWIM? She had no interest in dealing w/ them and nearly institutionalized my oldest DN as he was "severely" autistic - which ended up being mildly autistic, highly functioning.

While I do understand her resentment of me, I still would LOVE for someone to spend the kind of money I spent on those boys for lessons for karate, tennis, golf, swimming, etc, on my kids. It would be hard to not be grateful on some level!

Anyway, I'm off the track. Just still not sure what this thread is about. I used to be on another forum years ago regarding something very different that was VERY supportive. Some of us are still close, via the net, to this day. I was hoping to find that here, but I see a lot of defenses always going up. Does anyone else feel that way? I like hearing from all perspectives and really didn't think I'd find that, so I do like that aspect, but also hoped to find a place where everyone was in the same boat as on my other forum, which dealt w/ conception issues.


    Bookmark   May 16, 2007 at 4:23PM
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I think so many in here have a hard time seeing the Point of View of others on this board. I like having the perspective from people who are in the position of Stepmom as well as that of people who are stepchildren (like me). I think the problem is that much of the conflict comes from a failure to recognize that the posters here are most likely nothing like the people we are angry with. I have yet to find a Stepmom in here whose story matches my Stepmother's at all. I also think some people in here just like confrontation. Maybe they can't confront their SD, SC, DH's ExW or the BM in the same way they can annonmously confront the posters in this forum and they feel better when they get it all out.

    Bookmark   May 16, 2007 at 5:22PM
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On this board you will get many different perspectives, mostly positive, and some negative. But I think that most of the people who post try to encourage and offer what wisdom, insight, and experience they can share. And we all learn from one another. I imagine that we are a very mixed group of people, with different ages, different experiences, different thoughts, and wisdom learned through our varying experiences during this walk through life. Where else can you get immediate feedback from so many people "when you need it", on the various challenges we all face? You can reach out for encouragement, or just someone to listen. You will find people on the step parent forum who have walked in your shoes, or in the shoes of a step child. You have people on this board who have the voice of youth, and others who have the voice of experience, and wisdom. Some are not step parents, but can share a shoulder to cry on, as they listen, or bring the gift of encouragement on a bad day. There are those whose words sting, and yet there is truth that is hard to hear...and sometimes, in spite of it, we learn something from those willing to speak the truth, that our friends or family would never have the courage to actually tell us...even though they may think it, or tell others what they "really" think. And we can "hear" what they have to say, and have the "courage" to actually consider whether there is any truth to their words that we can learn from, or whether they are just mean spirited posters who use their words to hurt.

It is like sitting on an airplane next to someone you think you have zero in common with, and finding this person you least expect to have such wisdom, that brings you perspective, and peace amidst the troubles.

I have watched over the years on this board those who are not step parents, encourage step parents who are struggling, hurt, and frustrated.

Just because someone is not a step mom...and they may not be a bio-mom either, but a woman/man who cares and listens, and offers encouragement where she/he can. Perhaps she is like the grandmother everyone wishes they had who listens, and helps where she can. Perhaps it is a grounded and wise parents, whose kids are now grown and too busy in their careers to call home much. Perhaps it is a young person who has another perspective that is unique and valuable. Or a person never married who watched their best friends struggle through similar things you are struggling through, and they are able to encourage and help you as you walk through some of the frustrations and pain in your life.

Step parents...on the hard days, do something good for yourself. Take a walk, put together a group of friends who are also step parents and have regular time together, to encourage and support one another. Give yourself a time out, and take a bubble bath or a shower, and regroup. Find peace through your faith. Learn to breathe to help you relax when the moments come that take your breath away.

I have heard speakers talk about what they did when it was so hard, and they said just the next thing. Sometimes you just need to go to bed because things can look better in the morning after everyone has had a chance to cool off, and the heat of the moment has passed. Remember, words can hurt, but it does not mean they speak the truth. Consider when the painful words hit, whether there is any truth in them. If not, let them go. Blessings to you all as you do this honorable job of giving it your all to help raise these kids into "healthy" adults. My hope is that one day, they will reward the journey by becoming the kind of human beings that become such a blessing in your life!

    Bookmark   May 16, 2007 at 6:36PM
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I've found the posters here to be very helpful and supportive with the posts that I've put up. However, that being said, I have also read some threads where I can see how you (and some other SM's) would feel attacked. I am a SM, and I'm in my 2nd marriage, with no children of my own. This is a tightrope that we walk. Especially if we have our skids living with us. We are a maternal figure in their lives on a daily basis, yet have no rights. I am very fortunate in that my DH supports me, and listens to my opinions and feelings. We make decisions together. I have one SS living with me, and the other lives with their BM. It's a very tricky situation. There is also a lot of resentment on the BM's part towards DH and myself because she lost custody of my oldest SS due to her abusing him. Every situation here is different, and what works for one family may not work for another. I love my SS's very much, and they are absolutely wonderful to me. They are very respectful and considerate. We have had a few bumps along the way, but nothing serious. My DH and I also spent 4 yrs together before getting married, so that we could all adjust, and make sure the foundation was set. I never would have married him if there were serious problems with his children, as I know that can only get worse. It was also very clear when we were dating and when we got married, that his children come first and foremost. That is one of the things that I came to love about him. That doesn't mean that he has to choose between us, it just means that their health and wellbeing are the most important thing. I have no problem with that. The problems in my family are not actually with my SS's, but with their BM, who has serious mental issues. I sometimes need to vent about that, or ask for suggestions on how to deal with her in general when she's having a flare up.
Anyway, overall the people here are wonderful, and just remember that as SM's we can support each other.

    Bookmark   May 16, 2007 at 6:43PM
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I read many of your posts and relate so well, that if I didn't know better I'd say someone is telling my story for me...(right up to the part about the two of you being doctors).
Otherwise, I have to say your candid, open and humble approach to this is admirable. I like your sense of fairness. I recognize how exhausting it is to be subjected to someone or something out of love for the person you love. It's like we're 'damned if we do and damned if we don't'. But speaking up only provokes the same 'one way thinking' reaction from him, and over reaction from her. So I feel I cant tell her it like it is. I get pissed that I can't and pissed that he won't!
I go from resentful to uncertain, then I think it through, and then think it through too much and basically doing what I am not impressed with by how he resolves (or fails to) with his daughter/kids. The most unsatisfying part of this is it makes me doubt myself, my values and actually consider it true when he says I'm selfish? If my not wanting to see him be manipulated by a daughter that if capable enough to buy drugs, is capable enough to
load a dish washer move back in, then yes, I am indeed selfish. My job is to make sure my 17 year old daughter is respectful, kind, contributes to her provisions-law abiding and accountable. Be it in our home, my ex husbands home, her school, and whereever it is she is capable to go.
If my husband came to me and said "if this sounds like something that we could work out, would you be willing to..." I'd do anything for my husband, even sucking up the bull---- for a while. But its really the lack of enforcing a united front, and somewhere at some point, entrusting our kids to handle and deal with major life issues, not enable them so they struggle with adult issues, or something they don't need to or should be permitted to struggle with. The parents involve kids in the wrong ways. Consider them, listen and understand, judgement free and respect their input. But be a parent. Let them be a kid, young adult, and so on. Not a consult to your life, marriage and future!! When they get married then, its their turn, then they can run their households just like our parents did.
Its not my stepdaughter's MO I resent, it's my husband, for lacking it., and denying he does.

I get tired of having to have a third party to witness what I say and how I say it. My husband has called me while I was out of the country to 'call me on something she said I said'. Id like to see him listen long enough to say one word I had to say pertaining to her, let alone call her on it or call her on anything.

I'd be totally different if she didn't blame the world for everything she cant do. So, you know how implementing any responsibility usually end. I go through the same thing with the laundry..."she put my clothes in the basket'.. Dad....she vacuums at 3 PM when I am trying to sleep....
Yes I did, and yes I will, and she is reminded that her own apartment would be a quiet alternative. To him I say... "You are talking to the wrong person
and I find it hard to believe you think you and I would even be talking about this?"
Kids no matter how old do not get why dads have the need to be needed, his role is providing, not enabling, and doing so is anything but a job well done.
Wow, this is long, really long. So long, that my step kids are probably grown with families of their own by now-
Dana...Keep the faith.

    Bookmark   May 17, 2007 at 1:58PM
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How many doctors are posting here?

I am a doctor. Am I one of the 2?

    Bookmark   May 18, 2007 at 9:02AM
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Wow, we truly are living parallel lives. That's a little comforting to me - to know I'm not some wicked witch just because I expect my DH to say what he means and mean what he says! I'm so tired of tiptoeing around - literally and figuratively. This morning, I told DH that I was getting butterflies in my stomach as the uncertainties as to what lies ahead is making me so anxious. He still hasn't talked to SD about taking our small rental which will be vacant in 2 weeks or about how she, her sister and sister's bf feel about all living together. Meanwhile, I have to "save" this house for her sister and her bf until July when they come down. They could move NOW, but want to wait. They have a month to month lease in NC, so I have to eat nearly $2000K for June??? Not fair and now I wish I'd never mentioned that house at all - prefer to rent to strangers, but honestly know it would be hard for my other SD and her bf to find a decent place w/ 2 dogs and I do try to help and be considerate to this day, for some strange reason. So, I'm hoping this SD living w/ me will at least live there for June and give it a go w/ her sister and bf. I'm sure she'll be uncomfortable, so it won't happen. After all, better she be comfortable than me, I suppose.

Anyway, I'm so sorry others are living this nightmare. Lately, my SD hasn't been explosive or anything - has been quite cordial since Mother's Day, but still we have the issues w/ dinner. Two nights ago, she wasn't supposed to eat w/ us but showed up and I think DH would have liked more, but the food was gone. Last night, I expected her and made a gourmet meal w/ filet mignon - well, there's one in the fridge for lunch, I guess. When I'm off (T, Th), I try to make a really nice meal and I don't like when I don't know who to expect to eat.

Take care and keep posting. I like having someone to vent to who understands from where I come...


    Bookmark   May 18, 2007 at 9:39AM
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My step-son graduated from college on Friday.

I didn't go to graduation (4 hours away), because
DH was going, and I thought it was a bio-mom event.
It was the right thing to do. DH said that SD said
she was glad I wasn't there, and actually, I was glad, too.

Anyway, my SS phoned, and asked to speak to me. Probably
more civil that he had ever been to me. Told me he wish I could have been there, but that he understood.
Moved back to 1 hour from our home to start a job
this week. Stopped by tonight and we had a nice conversation. This is very uncharacteristic of him, but
maybe we have turned a corner. He and my SD are in a wedding tomorrow night, and we are invited to the wedding.
He asked me if we are going...said he really would enjoy us being there. I talked to DH--actually I didn't even know about the invitation. DH sent a gift, but decided he didn't want to go. I don't even know the couple...they are friends of my step-kids. SS said that biomom would be there also--I told him that I didn't want to make anyone uncomfortable.

It's very strange to have SS interact with me in such a civil way. He's spending the night with us tonight, and it have been a totally different feeling to have him here.

Maybe there is hope for us after all. I still don't
lose any sleep over SD. It would be a miracle if we ever
interact in a congenial way. I usually just wait to see what kind of mood she is in before I say a word. It always depends on her mood and whether she is taking her anti-depressants.

    Bookmark   May 18, 2007 at 9:29PM
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Hey, southernsummer, good for you! I think you took the high road on the graduation issue and I know it's not always the easy road, though a little alone time is always good.

Sometimes, when the skids reach a milestone, they have more respect for us. Perhaps he can now appreciate all of your hard work (what kind of Dr. are you? Dh and I are dentists.) Before my SS fell off the face of the earth, he began to seem to grow up and appreciate his father and I. That's the time when I cosigned for his GSL, never dreaming he'd later drop out (or fail out) and stick me with it. I hope your SS just now has the awakening w/o the lousy path that followed for my SS.

Anyway, my hat's off to you for the way you handled the wedding - it's true in that no one's big day needs any outside drama.

Take care,

    Bookmark   May 18, 2007 at 11:34PM
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Hi, and thanks. I needed that.

DH ended up going to the wedding, just briefly.
SS dressed for the wedding--he and SD were in the wedding.
He looked fabulous, and asked if I would take his picture.
I suggested taking a picture with Dad, which I did. Then
(miracle) he asked if Dad would take a picture of himself
with me. Totally surprised me, but it was a good thing.

Anyway, DH went to the wedding, and spoke to bio-mom, and SD. Nice event--wedding and reception at a nice home around the pool. I really had no desire to go. I spent time with my kids at home.

I am a neurologist. I love my work.

Thanks for the support. It really means a lot.

    Bookmark   May 20, 2007 at 1:41PM
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I think this SS may have a new appreciation for you! I hope so. Perhaps he at least has a newfound respect for you academic and professional accomplishments!

W/ my SD, I'm not sure if the "mother" Mother's Day card was to play me for a fool or not, lol. I do want to believe she loves me in some way and actually I am pretty certain that she does, but I'd love to have the comfort level to really speak to me as my own w/o the worry of how it will be played back to my DH. KWIM? Walking on eggshells for me...

Neurologist - very impressive! In our dental school, we took the first 1.5 years w/ the med students and neuro was the bear! The absolute straw that broke the camel's back for more than a few students back then. What does your DH do?


    Bookmark   May 20, 2007 at 2:48PM
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Hi...I'm new here and looking for a little support. My DH and I just celebrated our 1st anniversary and in the past year and a half we: received "primary" custody of his two boys via "temporary agreement" of BM, planned a wedding, packed up everything we own and moved to an isolated island 5000 miles away from friends and family (due to military.) The agreement with BM is pretty simple: as long as she doesn't have to pay child support, she doesn't want them (except during the summer) - oh, and she wants lots of pictures so she can hang them on her fridge with a "look what I made, aren't they cute?" attitude all the while, without any of the hard work, physical, financial, emotional, and mental exhaustion that comes with full-time mommying. I am fortunate that she doesn't impose on my "mothering" of the boys (in fact she takes parenting advice from me!) and is actually ok with their calling me "momma" as long as they don't call her by her 1st name (which the youngest went through a phase doing. We've gotten him to stop, though.) Since it's only been a year of marriage we'll see if she also begins to resent me in the years to come. It wouldn't surprise me since the boys are already more mine than hers!

The situation is better than most in the non-confrontational way, but we do have some serious concerns for what the children are exposed to in that house. She's so useless that she lives with her mommy and daddy while they pay for absolutely everything for her (from her new car to her never ending pursuit of a college degree) and all of this at almost 29 years old, mind you. We got her to agree to the temporary agreement so that we didn't have to pursue an emergency custody order due to neglect, borderline abuse issues, and serious inappropriate activity around the boys i.e. BM, GD, and Uncle all sneaking to the basement to smoke pot while the kids are left to GM's care (the one on anti-depressents who's pretty much insane, as mental illness runs on that side of the fam.) The youngest had been burnt next to his eye with a cigarette (stoned-stupor from Uncle) and the oldest's first memory of Kindergarten was being "hungry" since he wasn't being fed before school and she was behind on his lunch account (thankfully the school won't starve kids so his first meal everyday was a PB sandwich at lunchtime.) Not to mention the time she wouldn't pay the $3 for a prescription for her son's ear-ache because she was claiming to not have the $ because she hadn't received her child support check yet (she wanted direct deposit) and she would leave messages with him screaming bloody murder in the background on my DH's VM. Meanwhile her mommy and daddy pay to have a maid clean their house and can make their daughter's car payment, insurance payment, buy her cigarettes and pot - but not their grandson's medicine! GM actually left one of the messages! Due to anger and sexually inappropriate comments from the (until very recently) 4-year-old, his pre-school director referred him to a counselor. Briefly at his appointments, I was able to talk to her about my issues with being a step-mom (I am not a biomom yet) and I recently started seeing her on my own. She suggested that I find some support and that's how I found all of you. I know that although we have a common link, our situations are so different as well. I really connected to Jessegirl's post a few back with not having children of my own and having the steps live with me full time because of mental issues with mom - except that this is my 1st marriage. Which is my step-mom issues: loving these boys as they are mine without the "rights" of the "real mom" (and that term too -like I'm not "real" and I don't "really" do everything a good mom does)...the pain of the association that a step-mom is not as "valid" as a biomom, y'know? The pain of having the man of my dreams not waiting for me like I did for him. I'd never been married, never had children; he's been there and done that - twice. I wonder if/when we do have our own if it will be as exciting/scary/wonderful for him as it will me. I am just having a really hard time adjusting to the fact that he shares something so intimate with her and not me when we were definitely made for each other. I know it will be different with me - like planned - and the fact that he is totally in love with me but it's just so hard to think that she stole my opportunity to build a family with the man I looked for my whole life instead of join a family that she created but doesn't take responsibility for, y'know? I don't know if any of you feel this way as well but it's still nice to know that you all are out there. My sister is a stepmom as well with a similar yet different situation than mine, but she is the only SM I know. I know that statistics put me in the "norm" these days but it's hard to see that when you don't know anyone else. So...that's me in a nutshell...I hope that I can be of support to you and hope you don't mind my venting. Thanks for listening... J

    Bookmark   May 22, 2007 at 6:49PM
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Start a new thread here or your post won't get enough attention.

As for the feelings about DH sharing that intimacy w/ his X's, I think that leaves. You sound young. When I was about 20, I found out the bf I had been seeing was divorced! He didn't want me to know, saying how "Catholic" I was and fearing I'd dump him. I had some similar issues w/ it as you are now experiencing - I felt a little weird/jealous that they once made a lifetime vow, etc.

But, later, after graduating college and dental school, I began a relationship w/ my current DH. None of those issues ever arose. Like your DH, I think, my DH married his ex as she was pg (I feel like she planned it) though he had ended the relationship. Anyway, I'm just saying that 10 years for me had me mature to the point that the other marriage didn't bother me at all. Older, wiser, less wise? Who knows. But, your feelings should mellow w/ age.

I don't think you have the second rate deal w/ his children. They are troubled, BM is damaged, you can make a lifechanging difference in these kids. Embrace it and be happy you are 5000 mi. from the X!

BTW, we did have our own family and they are 3 beautiful boys that have truly completed "us" and we have quite an extensive family w/ his three grown kids (he's 19 y.older), my 3 teenage nephews, whom I largely raised, etc. We're going through a tough time w/ my SD living w/ us, but overall I'd like to think we're in this for the long haul.

Hang in there and take a deep breath. Keep posting and start this on a new thread to get it attention!


    Bookmark   May 22, 2007 at 7:47PM
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Thanks for responding...

I'm 30 and originally from the Northeast. In my neck of the woods, people went straight to college and then enjoyed their twenties until marrying between the ages of 25 and 30. As I said earlier, all of my friends met their "ones" and built their lives together. It was very uncommon to see divorcees at 28, let alone 20! It's part of the difficulty I have with my situation! Why am I the only one whose mr. right previously had a mrs. wrong? I did it the right way - I waited to meet "the one" and then get married before starting a family. I'm not the one who intentionally got pregnant at 20 years old screwing the man I supposedly loved out of a college degree and forcing him to marry me so my child wouldn't be born out of wedlock and then sucking the financial and living life out of him while cheating on him on the side. So why am I the one who lost out on a honeymoon and ability to build a family with the man of my dreams? It's just so frustrating. I know that time heals all wounds and that it will get easier with time but d*mn I'm angry right now. Our therapist says that anger is a masking emotion that covers something more vulnerable like fear or pain and she wants me to think about what the underlying emotion is but most times when I think about her I just get so furious. If she wanted the boys so badly as to manipulate him to get them then why isn't she taking responsibility for them? I guess it's a blessing in disguise since she could be the overly active BM that resents my entire being - the way I do hers :) and forbids me to act like their mom at all. I'm just an emotional mess right now....I'm angry and grateful at the same time and just wish that these boys were really mine and that DH and I got together 10 years ago instead! I dunno...

It's nice to hear that you found completion in your own "3" - very reassuring. I hope that having our own strengthens the connection we have as a family as well - and I appreciate your advice and understanding. Thanks for being there. J

    Bookmark   May 22, 2007 at 9:05PM
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Maybe it's age or something, but I don't feel left out of things with my DH. We've been together 14 years. He was married twice before. We haven't had the usual "firsts", but I have his love. That's what matters.

    Bookmark   May 23, 2007 at 10:34AM
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"steppin out" I can relate to your feelings of wishing you could have had everything with your significant other first. I'm only 22 and I know I don't know everything like a lot of other people my age think, but I know I have a good head on my shoulders. My boyfriend is 36 and has a 12 yr. old that he had (unplanned) when he was 23. We have our own baby on the way that wasn't planned either and there are a lot of things I wish could have been firsts for us but given the age difference that would have been difficult in any circumstance. However, I feel like because he's been through this once already there are many things he's not willing to do that he did the first time, like bending over backwards trying to make everything work. He and his ex got married because "it was the right thing to do" not because they were in love. 9 months after his son was born he learned that his wife never really wanted to get married and wish she had waited until after their son was born. That knowledge tore everything apart for my BF and they divorced and it's still costing him. So here I am, 22, a college graduate soon to have no health insurance and no promise of marriage even though it was something we talked about before I became pregnant. I feel like old events are haunting what we have and preventing progress. Now more than ever my BF is giving less discipline to an already spoiled and lazy kid. I wonder how things will play out once there is a new baby... The whole situation is scary and overwhelming and sometimes I feel like there is nothing I can do but just hope and pray that everything turns out ok and I'll have a real family and I won't be treated like the second priority. I'll always have my family that I grew up with that are extremely supportive and helpful but what I need is for my BF to step up and take into consideration that I need what he gave to the person that never wanted it from him in the first place. It's not fair that we can't choose who we love and what their past was and what happens to us. I wish I could have had the first experiences and the history. I wish I didn't have to feel like the evil step-mother to an ungrateful 12 yr. old or at least I wish I was older so that the upbringing that my mother gave me would have more of an affect because I know I'm going to be a great mom to my own child and I'll have many strong women in my life who will be able to provie me with great advice. But there's only so much you can do for a child that's not yours and doesn't respect you and there's only so far a limit you can force someone to be something you need them to be. I don't want a picture perfect life, I just want what I know I deserve; what every good, strong, level-headed woman who wants a life with their "Mr. Right" who messed up with their "Ms. Wrong." Why should we have to pay for the mistakes of others and the bitterness of step-children and ex-wives?

    Bookmark   May 23, 2007 at 8:11PM
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The choice was made the minute we chose to marry a man
with a past. Things are much simpler when I man has never
been married. There is no doubt about that. But every man has some form of baggage, and some are a lot worse than
having an ex-wife and difficult step-children.
My step-kids are the only thing that my husband and I fight about. Sometimes I imagine what life would be like, if my husband and I had nothing to fight about.

    Bookmark   May 25, 2007 at 8:17AM
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I don't fight with my boyfriend much other than the lack of discipline he has with his son. I'm sure if there was nothing to fight about we'd create something, it's human nature. I've been told that I'm not allowed to discipline the golden child anymore because it makes his mother uncomfortable because he doesn't like being told what to do and that affects him emotionally. Basically, because I ask him to clean up and help a little, he goes home to his mother and complains that he actually has to do something. Not just complains but throws a complete tantrum and explodes. That behavior would never fly in my upbringing. When I was growing up I had my share of chores, from helping with the laundry, cleaning the outside of the kitchen cupboards, vacuuming the livingroom rug weekly, giving the family dog a bath, helping to clear the table after meals, taking out the trash and of course cleaning my own bedroom. And these things weren't asked of me, they were expected of me or else there were consequences. This kid doesn't have to do any thing like that. When his father actually had a conversation about it these are the things he listed as chores... "I have to clean my room, and take the dog out to the bathroom, and take showers and brush my teeth." Who knew good higene was a chore? If it's not sitting playing with his PSP all day long or having his eyes glued to some WWE wrestling show it's just not a concern for him, oh unless it's finding time to play with himself. His room is being changed into the baby nursey and he is moving to a room downstairs. I've done most of the work in moving all of his furniture and "things" downstairs. One day last week I was folding the end of a laundry basket and I told him to go get started on bringing some things down to his new room. I told him I would be up in literally two minutes and I was. When I went up what did I find him doing? Jerking off to naked pictures he printed off his father's computer when we weren't home. He's 12 yrs. old! Obviously I know boys start getting curious around this age. But what in hell is a kid thinking when someone tells them they will be up to help them in their room in two mintutes and they think "hmmm, now's a good time to play with myself!" Baggage in a spouse is one thing, I can accept baggage, we all have it. But commonsense challeneged kids belong to a whole other flight plan. I just hope his "ways" are coming from his mother's genetics...

    Bookmark   May 26, 2007 at 9:36AM
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angel18515-"commonsense challenged kids belong to a whole other flight plan".You are right about that. Dealing with "challenged" children make things a lot harder for everyone involved. Its almost impossible to "undo" years of bad parenting, especially when genetics play a part. Sadly, a lot of children are born from mother's who have mental conditions. Hence, there is always the possibility that they inherit those "bad genes".I have worked with a lot of behaviorally challenged children, and most of them have picked up their custodial parent's distorted thinking styles. If the mother has "issues" than its expected that she will pass them onto her children. Its especially frustrating trying to work with mothers like this, since they rarely want to take responsibility or make any changes in their own behaviors for the sake of their children.

"I'm not allowed to discipline the golden child anymore because it makes his mother uncomfortable because he doesn't like being told what to do and that affects him emotionally"

OMG WHAT STUPIDITY! So the world is suppose to revolve around what he wants? Whats going to happen when this kid hits 18... and lets say some girl tell him to stop? If he's going to have that kind of thinking...IÂm scared at what he'll be willing to do when he doesn't get his way. His mom sounds like she has the IQ of a gerbil-no wonder this child is so difficult. If she had any clue on what "is" emotionally harmful, she would know better than to make such a ridiculous suggestion. This really sounds to me more of her "having a problem with you parenting her child" than anything else. I have to say, put your foot down and don't go along with this if you want your marriage to survive. I can't imagine having to deal with this child and having to bite my tongue. This child is going to walk all over you and "purposely" try to push you to your limit, knowing you can't "tell him what to do".If he can manipulate his parents into allowing him to get his way now, I cringe at the thought at the teen years that await you.
Does his dad agree with this decision? You are pregnant, you and your baby don't deserve to be put through this type of stress!

Although it would be nice, I would give up on the dream on this child ever being a well behaved, respectful child. If he is being raised by a mother who is a nutcase and his dad is unwilling to set some clear boundaries and instead goes along with his x's suggestions when it comes to child-rearing decisions, his behavior will only worsen the older he gets. The bottom line is-Its like beating a dead horse to co-parent a child effectively if one parent is a constant negative influence on the child and the other parent just goes along to avoid conflict.

Take care of yourself,and good luck....

    Bookmark   May 27, 2007 at 1:39AM
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Wow, Dcubana.
That's great advice. I wish you had been there to guide me
8 years ago.

Anyway, I couldn't agree more.

Setting consistent boundaries, with back-up from your husband,is the most important thing.
But also, my husband is a good man, but loses his mind when it comes to setting boundaries for his children. He is a good parent to my 2 kids (11 & 13) and we are usually in agreement where they are concerned. When it comes to his kids, (now 21 & 25) he and his ex- seem to be in a contest to see who can bribe them the most. Lots of rewards for bad behavior, and no consequences or boundaries. I will say that he is better than he used to be, but mainly because it came to a point where I just couldn't take it any more.

My husband wanted to enforce boundaries with them, but he just couldn't bring himself to do it, and I was an easy "bad cop" to blame the rules on. I really didn't mind, if that's what he needed, because someone had to put their foot down. I just got tired of all the bad behavior, and my husband's excuses for their bad behavior. It was destroying our family.

My stepson has matured a lot in the last 8 years--tough love has had a lot to do with that.
My insistence has had a lot to do with my husband finally
learning to set some guidelines, and some consequences.
For example, 4 totalled cars by age 21 resulted in 4 new cars--not any type of consequences. The 5th totalled car and a DUI was the last straw for me, especially when my husband's reaction to the situation was, "I guess I'll have to buy SS another car." The final result was that my husband did not get another car, SS buckled down and got into a University after 5 years of community college, moved into his own apartment, and finally graduated last week.
DH did get him another car 2 years later, but there has been a remarkable transition. Even at age 20, SS did respond to tough love, when it was consistent, and backed up by a parent. Bio-mom still fought all the way, but
when DH was consistent and didn't cave in to her, things have been remarkably better.

    Bookmark   May 27, 2007 at 8:44AM
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Hi, this is my first time here. I just need some advise...I have a 4 year old stepson and my husband and i have a 2 year old son together. Ok...i spank my son when he is bad, when my ss is here and they both act bad together i just spank my son. My husband said i could spank my ss but i know if i do he will tell his mother and she'll make a big stink about it. My husband said that she gave her ok for me to spank him...but I haven't. My husband said that it's not fair for my son to only get spanked. I feel really bad when i do spank my son when my ss is here...i don't know what to do. What do you think? I need some help...what should i do?

    Bookmark   July 15, 2010 at 11:17PM
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I just finished reading back over these posts from seven years ago. What an amazing time capsule. It's amazing how so much has changed, and how ironically so much is exactly the same.

Greetings to all SM's. I hope your life is less complicated than it was in 2008.
Peace be to all who enter here.

    Bookmark   January 26, 2014 at 4:14AM
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It's very nice of you to post again, southernsummer!

How in heck did I/we miss Gladys's very disturbing post about spanking?

Has she posted again?

Has anyone corresponded with her?

    Bookmark   January 26, 2014 at 10:26AM
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No, Sylvia.
I have literally been gone four years.
I survived the wedding of my SS, and I'm
about to hopefully survive my SD's wedding.
Everything is easier now, especially because
they both have moved away and have their own
lives. SD lives about 9 hours away and SS is about
an hour away. We try to keep a low profile with them to avoid jealousy and conflict from their mother. All in all, my world is better. Free at last.

    Bookmark   February 21, 2014 at 3:27AM
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