How do I deal with an ex-wife who is bitter?

nessa-2006June 16, 2006

My fiance's ex is still very bitter and makes our lives difficult. She uses the kids to manipulate situations and expects my fiance to solely take care of the kids financially. She just started a new job and only pays for her car payment and insurance. All the other expenses are paid by my fiance including her mortgage. She always tells the children she has no money, and the children blame dad. My fiance makes a good income and takes very good care of his kids. His ex has not moved on with anyone, but it doesn't seem like she has moved on emotionally either. She always makes it a point to tell him he messed up and he should not be happy. She always has something to complain about, if it's not about money it's about us, or about their past. I didn't know she would be so difficult, my fiance feels he has to please her because her misery affects the kids. I feel she knows his weakness and uses it to her benefit. It's been over a year, how much time does she need to get on with her life?

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If she's a smart woman she will concentrate on her children and doing what's best for them instead of worrying about who she's going to sleep with. A year is NOT a long time.

You're the one with clear cut choices. These situations generally do NOT get easier. They get more and more difficult and more and more complicated. Be prepared that if you marry this man (who by the way is REALLY rushing if he's only a year out from divorce!) that the ex-wife (and your fiancee) will complicate EVERYTHING in your life from here on out--even after the children are grown. Do you really want to bring YOUR children into this already sticky, mucky morass?

Read some more of this forum and you'll get a glimpse at just how ucky the stepfamily situation can be. Sure, it CAN work, but those situations are rare and require people with a lot of maturity and the ability to sacrifice.

"my fiance feels he has to please her because her misery affects the kids."

He does. She will be manipulating him the rest of his life if he allows her to do so. Let's put the blame where it belongs. Your fiancee is allowing her to manipulate him because he loves his children. She will ALWAYS be in control.

    Bookmark   June 16, 2006 at 7:30AM
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The X wife has it pretty good, wouldn't you agree? So don't look for any change on her part. Sounds like you and your fiancee are at the X's mercy--powerful (victim)lady.

How long will it take the X to get on with her life? Now, if you were her, why would you hurry? Maybe she's smart enough not to get entangled with anyone until she has her act together. (Sound like anyone you should know?) And if the fiancee continues to take care of her, and she can still whip him whenever she likes--just what makes you think she would want to see any change--except maybe have you go away.

You didn't say if you have any children.

    Bookmark   June 16, 2006 at 5:00PM
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I agree with both posters above. Let me emphasize two points from Vivian:


Getting remarried so soon --- ****RED FLAG**** ----

I don't care how 'wonderful' your fiance 'is'. It is way too soon to get remarried. Most professionals and also those who have gone through divorce recommend not even DATING anyone for a year! Divorce is a very intense experience that requires time and healing.

I am sorry to be so harsh, but with the situation you describe and from the experiences of many before you, I can tell you that there is a fairly good chance that you will end up being ex #2. Either you will finally get fed up with the constant stress, or he will finally snap from the combined pressure of keeping his ex and you happy. Or you're going to find out that maybe he isn't so wonderful, and there's a very good reason he has an ex wife. (I say this from first hand experience.)

Think long and hard about your decision to marry this man, because love does not conquer all.

    Bookmark   June 17, 2006 at 10:47AM
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Ditto to all the above. I went through 10 years of a bitter, vengeful ex-wife tormenting my husband and me. She will NOT change, so if you marry him, I hope you have lots of $ to put a wall of attorneys between you and her. The only time we got any peace was when we took both of his kids into our home under an emergency custody order and my husband simply refused to communicate directly with her. This was my idea, by the way; he used to take evenings and weekends of verbal beatings from her, making both our lives miserable, until I said ENOUGH.

She then had to talk through the lawyers, period. Types like this ex-wife feed and thrive on discussion/contact/conflict, any little opening you give her, she'll take and exploit.

She will not change. It doesn't matter if your fiance is a great guy, if you marry him he'll be permanently installed in your life with suitcases full of toxic baggage and the guilt that prevents him from dealing effectively with her.

And you'll have to work overtime to hang onto your love for someone who's a conduit for pain entering your life, unless he or she is that rare person who's gotten real, hard-core psychotherapy and achieved real insight and change, so as not to repeat destructive patterns in relationships and communication.

    Bookmark   June 20, 2006 at 9:27AM
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If I were you, I would spend the time and read the ENTIRE step-parent forum. I would then step back for a week or two, and then I would read the entire forum again. I would think long and hard about whether this was "really" the life I wanted. If you "choose" to marry into are now going into it, with your eyes wide open. In many ways, you forfeit the right to complain about it, or give your DH grief about it. It is what it is. Even to complain about income leaving your house to support Ex and the children. You know that going in. Remember the reality of actually living it can be harder than you may imagine at this time. This is the time to toss out the childish dreams, and take a good, hard look at this through the eyes of a mature woman. If you choose to marry him, if you were asking me, I would advise you to wait a few years before having any children together. Just my 2 cents.

    Bookmark   June 20, 2006 at 5:11PM
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I'm in the same boat!.my hubbies' ex is always sour and bitter. Its been 6 years now from his divorce. I married him a year ago and have a newborn son. His ex has a live in boyfriend , now common law husband and she still is soooooooo unhappy. Now my hubby is going to his lawyers to decrease childsupport since we have our newborn and she is in such a hissy! She is manipulating the kids and getting into fights with my husband in front of them when he picks them up or drops them off. And i mean fights..swearing and demanding money for extra stuff. My husband said produce bills and when my lawyer sees them she will see what is fit to pay you and what you will not get.
Even her daughter is getting fed up. She is always saying her mom is so unhappy. ANd i just wish she would be happy. I thought when she got this boyfriend it would makeher happy but it didn't. And from what i read on other posts elsewhere, Ex wives are never happy. Vindictive and sour. I just would like to know if you can fine her or something in court to curb her behaviour???? i told my husband, i've stayed out of this completely because she is a waste of my breath and time BUT that my son is born, if she calls or does anything, i'm charging her for harrassment and putting a restraining order on her. I just wish the court can fine her or sue her in some way to shut her up!

    Bookmark   July 15, 2006 at 11:03AM
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They never move on, they will be bitter for the rest of their lives. My DH's ex told him "I will make you pay for the rest of your life". This ex is so vengeful and hateful that she married her current husband now on the same day my DH and I got married, to show "him" (my DH). She thinks my DH is controlling her, I don't know how that is, DH hasn't had any form of communications with her in 7 years. She writes threatening letters all the time, DH puts them straight into the trash. These two have been divorce for 11 yrs!! I swear his ex is mental.
You need to think about this situation, I agree with all the above posters, being a SM is hard enough as it is, then you have and evil ex to deal with as well, make sure you are mentally, emotionally and physically strong enough to handle what's ahead of you.

    Bookmark   July 15, 2006 at 12:45PM
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My partner has an ex-wife who is utterly the most greedy vindictive and nasty individual ever to be encountered. I don't know what to do, it's getting worse and worse! I am not at all concerned about our bond but worried how the future stands - I can not explain things more sugar coated, she holds so many awful and disgusting traits that I can't even understand why he stayed there for 9 years - (He tells me he tried to do the right thing and stay there as she fell pregnant, then again...) I believe him, he's a good man and a hard worker with his own small business. How do I cope with things that are about to happen in the future? They have settled on half of the school holidays every year which means we have them for a week in April, a week in july, a week in sept and 3 weeks over the christmas break - that is all as they will reside in another state for the rest of the time and he is able to call twice a week but she still plays these pathetic games and misses calls then writes a day later "you can call now" even on his son's 7th birthday she made him wait a few days! She even threw his present out as it was photographs of his father and him! I can tell they are getting fed bulls%#t by their scorned mother and it really plays on my partner, I know it will only get worse. Is there any way to reason with these women? I don't know what to do, we are so very much in love but she has the kids and loves drama. How should he respond to her demands of what time to pick them up for the weeks planned, not to have me in the car, be there at this time sharp etc (written from her demanding emails that get changed as soon as he agrees ) Should he toughen up and stand his ground with her or give into her every silly demand as she wants??? Please help - i'm desperate!

    Bookmark   March 17, 2011 at 8:10AM
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I came here to find info and boy oh boy did I! I found that some of the info here is REALLY biased in favor of the new wife. Before I continue, I want you to know that I'm on both sides of the fence. I'm an ex w/child & I'm think'n of marry'n a man with an ex w/child who manipulates & controls as well. So, I can see both sides.

To organic_maria; when I read parts of your post, my blood boiled. How do you think that you and your husband can go and take away from another child because you now have one of your own. Ya can't do that! If he could not afford 2 children then he should not have had another baby! But you CAN NOT rob Peter to pay Paul! You can not take from one household to put into yours. I don't care what "SHE" has. That baby is "HIS" responsiblity as well. Unfortunately, you won't get this (foolish lady) until after he breaks his vows & divorces YOU, leaves YOU w/children, remarry's & has children by his new wife & then takes food out of YOUR child's mouth to be able to feed his new family at the command of his NEW WIFE. Therefore, a reduction in CS is not go'n to happen. Allow that man to pay what it is he's supposed to pay for his child. That's the right of the be supported by both parents. You(foolish lady) are ask'n for conflict w/his ex when you do silly things as such. Do NOT help him to runaway from his financial responsibilites in order to make you happy. It's bad enough that the child has lost it's full time father. In these situations, you can't have it all. Don't put him in that position of taking away from one child to give to another. You'll stress out your marriage...even more.

Next, the ex probably has a good reason as to why she's so nasty towards him. I'm not say'n that being vendictive is right but maybe he did somethings to hurt her deeply during their marriage; you don't know, you were not there. You just know what he's told you & choose to believe him because you love him and of course he would NEVER lie! And, that may be true, maybe he doesn't lie to you. Maybe he's a "good man" NOW, but what was he like years ago before you met him? What was he like during his first marriage before all of the lessons he's learned at her expense? Again, I'm not say'n that she should be an evil **** but karma is a MF! If ya don't want it to grow, then don't sow the seed. I can't mistreat a dog & not expect to get bitten at some point.

I just think that MAYBE....just MAYBE he should go to his ex & try to make things right. I'm not say'n get back together w/her because what's done is done, but if there's still bitterness there then there's some unfinished business. And with many of YOU being WOMEN, I would think that YOU would encourge that! All of these excuses as to why your ex stayed with such a "witch" is nonsense, he stayed because he wanted to stay. He married her because he wanted to marry her...unless she was into some kind of spiritual voo-doo & put a hex on him?

There's always 2 sides to a story and all of you are all hyped up on what "he" said. Yeah, he's tell'n you about all of her skeletons but he's not say'n much about his is he? He was an angel! And, I betcha on her side, she's tell'n her new guy about all of his skeletons and how he was so aweful to her w/o tell'n how she pulled a knife on him in his sleep & set the bed on fire! My point here is don't be so dang on biased. I know you're angry...I get that but you don't know her so why are you angry at "HER"? Because she get's a certain % of his income in which she's entitled too? Because "HE", your husband is weak and easily controlled. Because "HE" your husband feels guilt? Hmmmmm, and why is that? Why does he feel guility if he did noth'n wrong? Your husband needs to man up & accept responsiblity for his part in their failed marriage & try to make things right.

Again, not say'n allow her to manipulate, but he needs to put all of his cards on the table & apologize for "HIS" part...because dispite what "HE" say's. He had a part! This way maybe some of her bitterness will fade unless she's really just a certified mental case. And, even if she is maybe he can assist w/that. Maybe the both of you can assist with that. Divorce is hard on EVERYBODY. You as a woman should feel some empathy...her marriage failed & him as the father of his child/ren should care just a bit because let's face it. She is the mother of his child/ren & her child/ren LOVES HER & HE loves his children. NOTH'N you do or say will EVER change that.

Do something as his current wife to try and encourage peace & get off of your "what about me" soap boxes. In reality, he should have never moved on to a YOU until he was done with HER. And, I mean completely done and I'm not talk'n about a certain time span. You can be divorces from your spouse for 20yrs and still have unfinished business. I came here to try & find some good information and sadly to say, there wasn't much maturity here. Being someone who's been on both sides of the fence, I encourage my guy to do the right things by his children and even his ex. I'm not into sowing seeds of hatred, bitterness and anger. If an "I'm sorry" on his part can help that woman to heal then by all means, apologize & then maybe she can find some happiness and we can go on with our lives!

    Bookmark   January 15, 2012 at 11:57AM
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I came onto this sight to find some peace of mind and sound advice in dealing with my BF's ex-wife. To say reading this left me depressed is an understatement! Although their only child is 19, she stops at nothing when she's on a bender. I think the writing is on the wall. He's an incredibly sweet, loyal and kind man but I don't know if I want to "choose" this for my future. If I don't see myself being able to deal with this, I guess there is no sense in continuing the relationship.

    Bookmark   January 15, 2014 at 12:13PM
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I think you are very wise to get out of this relationship before it's too late. Good luck to you.

    Bookmark   January 15, 2014 at 9:02PM
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