Dinner with Bio-Mom

lady_qJune 18, 2013

OK. So here's the condensed version of the background of my "steplife". Bio-mom walked away from her responsibilities 13 years ago. I met and married my husband 11 years ago and, for all intents and purposes, I have been the "Mom" ever since. Bio-mom has not been in the picture much and for the most part wasn't particularly interested in her son until very recently. My stepson is graduating from high school and will be moving to another city to live with his bio-mom to attend college this fall. Two days from now, he will be having his commencement ceremony and his mom and her new husband will be travelling here for the ceremony. My husband and I have extended an invitation to them to join us for dinner after the ceremony to make it a special night for stepson. This will be at a restaurant.

All sounds good, right. Well, here's the problem. I despise this woman, and I have no doubt she feels the same way about me. My husband and I cut off communication with her 6 years ago when she started a campaign to make our lives miserable, mainly because her life was already a disaster, and she couldn't stand to see us happy (I won't bore you with the details). We have had almost no contact with her since, and have no regrets about that. I am prepared to break bread with her for my stepson's sake, but for the life of me I cannot think of one thing to say to her.
I would appreciate any advice or suggestions you might have to help me get through this night. I'm a very open and sociable person, and have no problem making small talk or approaching people at parties -- I'm no wallflower. No doubt, this will be an awkward evening, but I want to try my best to make it good for my stepson.

Any suggestions on the best approach to this? Anyone out there who have gone through something similar?

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Did you discuss this with your step son before inviting her to dinner. He may be just as uncomfortable as you are to be with a woman who walked out on him when he was a child. What good is going to come out of this. I think to everyone involved this will be a very uncomfortable evening.

    Bookmark   June 19, 2013 at 4:47PM
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Yes, Emma, we discussed it with SS. He was very happy about it because he knows how tense things have been between us over the years. However, he loves his mother and although it's not very frequent, he does enjoy the time he spends with her. As I said, recently she has been showing more interest in him. The good that will come of it, we hope, is that it will open up the lines of communication again. SS is going to be living with her for possibly the next three years and we need to know how he's doing both in his studies and his life. SS tends to paint a rosey picture for his Mother becuase she's not around to see the truth. If she ever asked us, we would gladly tell her the truth, but perhaps she likes being oblivious. We are not like that - we want to know that he's okay, and if he's not we want to know that too. And we know that SS will not be forthcoming with the truth if there's a problem in his life. Perhaps his Mother will be if we ask direct questions. We just want to move on and act like adults...

    Bookmark   June 19, 2013 at 4:53PM
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Does your SS have any good friends graduating with him who, along with his/her parents, might want to celebrate the graduations of the kids as a group? Does SS have any grandparents nearby or other close family members you can invite? Having a larger group of people at dinner is the only way I can think to offer more breathing room for all.

    Bookmark   June 20, 2013 at 2:33PM
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Start the conversation with the reason you are all there and the upcoming college adventure. Unfortunately, you are in a tough spot. Your stepson is now going to make adult decisions for himself. Having gone through the college aged kid thing...I seriously doubt he is going to want to live with any parent for long.

The important thing is to keep communicating with him.

    Bookmark   June 21, 2013 at 7:36AM
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Well, the dinner is over and we all survived. Husband and I discussed beforehand the subjects we should touch on during dinner - ask them about themselves, their lives, their "things". It worked, they couldn't shut up talking about themselves. Her current husband, we discovered, is a pompous ass and was in his element. Afterwards, my husband said "that is never happening again"... LOL. My husband is a very humble, very laid back person. I can't imagine a scenario where he would choose to be in this guy's company. And, the biomom....well, she just seemed like she was trying too hard and frankly, was a bit pathetic. I'm glad it's behind me, but I'm glad we did it. It was a growth experience for me - I've replaced the resentment I felt for her with indifference. YAY ME!!

    Bookmark   June 24, 2013 at 7:49AM
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You are a total winner in my book.....classy and loving beyond the norm. Your son will grow and honor you. Well done.

    Bookmark   July 2, 2013 at 11:36AM
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