Not coping well with Adjusting to Adult Stepkids

Misserable_monesterAugust 27, 2013

Hello everyone, I have been reading this forum hoping to gain some insight into the minds of my soon to be stepkids (still not comfortable saying that word yet). A little background info first: FI and I have been together for almost 6 years now and the conditions when we first started dating were not the best, he was still married (but seperated) and his divorce was not final until well into the relationship. His two sons have never really cared for me which was completely understandable and I never forced a relationship with them. There is a 20 yr age difference between FI and I and his oldest son is only 4 years younger than me. However over the past year it was beginning to improve.

FI and I finally decided to move intogether in April of this year. I was hesitant since I have been use to it just being my 10 yr old and I, but since we have our wedding planned for February 2014 I thought it was time to co-habitate. Well I moved into the house that FI shared with his ex and their boys. The youngest son moved back home a few months before I came into the house due to financial reasons. I knew that it would be a huge adjustment all the way around due to the main fact that I was use to my OWN space and that didn't include sharing it with anyone but my own child. There were a few differences along the way but nothing too horrible.

A month ago his oldest (who is married with two kids of his own & struggles with substance abuse issues) came around stating that he and his family were homeless with nowhere to go. Since we have a nice size house we let them stay there and offered to help them get a place. We have stated that it was only tempary and that they both had to get jobs. I was able to pull a few strings and got him a job working for a friend of mine while she is still at the house all day long laying around and not really watching the kids. I come home to messes and dirty looks, no one really talks to me and I feel like an intruder in my own home now. FI gets upset that I complain to him (I know I should take my complaints to them but I really don't want to make the situation more uncomfortable than it already is). I don't think that I can handle much more of this and would be willing to hear any coping suggestions anyone has to offer. I want to be someone who they can talk to but more than anything I want to be respected in the home that I share with FI.

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If you haven't married I would not do so until you are comfortable with all of this. I think this is a warning of what is to come and it will probably never change. You need to decide if you can live the rest of your life in these circumstances.

    Bookmark   August 27, 2013 at 2:19PM
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what Emma said.


Often, the 'children', no matter what their ages, resent & dislike the person who replaced their mother, especially if their parents were still married when the new person came into the picture.


Fl gets upset because you complain to him & thinks you should deal with his kids on your own...


Those are his children, & you are his partner;
his place is right at your side.

Your partner owes you the respect to demand that his children respect you & to enforce that behavior.

If he isn't behind you now, when he should be trying to impress you with what a wonderful person he is & what a wonderful life you'll have with him, he won't ever be behind you.

I am so sorry, & I wish you the best.

    Bookmark   August 27, 2013 at 3:49PM
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This is the honeymoon period, things will only get worse from here.

You are 20 years younger than your FI and only 4 years older than your future SS. I'm not judging your relationship but because of the gap in ages it's probably hard for future SS to have any respect for you. Even if your relationship was not the cause of your FI's divorce, the kids probably think it was.

It was very good of you to at least live together first before getting married. I'd wait another year or so before getting married. If things improve, great. But if things don't work out, at least you won't have to pay an attorney thousands of dollars for a divorce.

    Bookmark   August 27, 2013 at 4:43PM
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Well, I decided a couple of weeks ago to push back the wedding, FI wasn't too happy about this but I think it's the best thing for now. FI has also spoken to his son & DIL about treating me with respect, its pretty much like beating a dead horse by now though and he is just as fed up as I am. He is just tired of dealing with the whole situation. I've gotten to the point where I don't even want to go home anymore. We told them last night that they need to be gone in 2 weeks and that opened a whole other can of worms and once again FI told them that they will respect me or they can leave. So still getting the silent treatment, just hope I can pull through these next two weeks. I just wish that I knew how to get along with them.

    Bookmark   August 28, 2013 at 11:19AM
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' I just wish that I knew how to get along with them.'

ok, here's the thing:

You *can't* get along with them because they don't want to get along with you, & so far that position has worked for them.

sorry your Fl is 'tired of dealing with the whole situation', but it's *his* situation to deal with.

If he can't or won't or doesn't get it under control, *you cannot do one thing about it.*

It sounds like he's taken at least a first step, so my free advice to you is to stay out of it.

Don't interfere, don't try to make it better, don't make it your problem.
It belongs to him & he's entitled to expect you to respect that.

If he can't stand up to his own children, & you marry him, you'll be claiming your own position as martyr & you can't hold it against him or against the children.

Repeat this as often as you like:

Not my circus.
Not my monkeys.

I wish you the best.

    Bookmark   August 28, 2013 at 7:06PM
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If my dad married someone my age, I would be pissed off. it's not right - it just is.....

The only one who could put me in my place under that circumstance would dad.

It's your FI's job - if he's unwilling, nothing good will come of it all.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2013 at 1:07PM
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OP - I agree with the others....what a train wreck, but it's one that only your Fiance can fix. Until he does, you are pretty much out of luck.

Confused about one thing, first you say:

" Well I moved into the house that FI shared with his ex and their boys..."

But then you say things like:

"Since we have a nice size house we let them stay there...", and " I feel like an intruder in my own home now".

If YOU moved into HIS's not your house, it's his. Right or wrong, he has the right to dictate who lives there and set the conditions for anyone who does. I think he's a fool for allowing all this craziness to happen, but if I am understanding and he owns the house, it's his, not yours. Your only options are to either deal with it or leave, you really have no right to mandate how he runs the household.

Besides, if he has allowed all this to happen already, you can mandate anything you want, he probably won't change how he deals with all this...which, unfortunately, is not showing you a lot of respect. Forget the fact that his kids don't respect you, I am not seeing how he is respecting you in any way. If my kids treated my GF like this in any way, they'd have to deal with me. Me failing to have her back would be a huge show of disrespect towards her....

    Bookmark   August 29, 2013 at 5:31PM
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@mkroopy, we are in the process of re-financing with my new on the deed and mortgage. I pay all of the house expenses minus the mortgage right now and he has assured me over and over to call it our house and not just his. Believe me I wish he had moved in with me and not the other way around. My biggest fear with moving in that it would not be my home and I would have no say when it came down to certain things. I guess it wasn't really a fear after all but maybe just intuition.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2013 at 6:29PM
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Because of the history of the house vis a vis your BF and his kids, I suspect that the situation will not change just because you name is on the deed. Be prepared for arguments. To be honest, in your shoes I would _not_ be refinancing with my name on the deed, because it will be a mess further down the track if you decide you really can't hack it any more.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2013 at 2:09AM
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Everything came to a head last night. Long story short they asked me if they could borrow some money for gas & diapers, I handed some over but told their dad about it (We have agreed to share everything when it comes to them & money). Turns out the sons mother gave him money just a couple of days ago and bought them a bulk box of diapers. FI wasn't too happy and call his son accusing him of using the money to buy dope. Son & wife then come to me cussing me out and then proceeded to my 10 yr olds bedroom to tell him how much of a whore his mother is and to stay away from their kids. I told her that she wasn't going to talk to my child like that and then that led to a whole new situation. I ended up telling my son to lock his room & stay in there while I did the same. I called dad to let him know that this wasn't happening anymore and either they leave tomorrow or I will. He called and told them to get out. An hour later they left, but that was after beating on the walls, cursing at my son and I through the doors and anything else they could think of to make as much noise as possible. I feel like crap for all of this but I do have to admit that after they left it felt peaceful. I don't know what to expect going forward but I know that I will stick to my guns on this one. A line was crossed when an adult threatens my child.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2013 at 8:35AM
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Wow...I feel bad for your son, having to be exposed to this. Please do everything in your power to keep him away from these fine people. If your fiancee let's them back in, you and your son need to get out of there.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2013 at 10:37AM
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I think you may have hit something on the head. There could possibly be substance abuse due to the violent actions they took. I would make sure all locks are changed. Your future husband even though this is his son needs to make sure they do not return. Does not sound like a good situation when they are around.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2013 at 6:38PM
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Change all the locks and alarm codes.

    Bookmark   August 31, 2013 at 9:35PM
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I my own self would stop the re-fi & have what is here called a "come to Jesus" meeting with my fiance.

Ugly behavior is one thing;
what's going on now means somebody could get physically hurt, & somebody-your son-already has sustained emotional & mental stress.

Your son cannot grow up safe & healthy with this nonsense going on.

I wish you the best.

    Bookmark   September 1, 2013 at 2:31PM
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**Another Update** and some advice would be great

It's been almost two weeks since the son and his family left, FI has stood by my side (which BTW has surprised the hell out of me) and has told them that they are no longer welcome there and can collect there things only when he is home. The son and wife still however bash me to him every chance they get. I really wish that he wouldn't tell me what they say but it seems that he is just venting to me about them.

Today his other son (the one that has been the most decent towards me) made a comment that he doesn't like the way the family is torn apart. His comment made me feel guilty for a moment, then every name they called me and my child came to mind and the guilt left.

Will things ever get better? Does anyone on here have a happily ever after?

    Bookmark   September 11, 2013 at 1:14PM
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It was his problem & he faced it!


*Tell* him that it distresses you to hear the names his kids are calling you, etc.

He can vent to someone else.

& smile sadly & tell his other son that you too hate to see the family all torn apart.

Given that he has been dealing with this problem, I'd say that it looks positive for things getting better, but I don't know anybody anywhere who "has a happily ever after".

Life is not a fairy tale, it doesn't remain static but keeps changing, & there are so many things to deal with every day.

The closest to happily ever after, I think, is to have that one person who has truly partnered with you & who faces your challenges as he does his own, & to be that one person for him.

I wish you both the very very best.

    Bookmark   September 11, 2013 at 6:16PM
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First of all, the children in them will say whatever to make you,the adult, feel GUILTY and that is their main weapon. You have to ignore that and STAY on your main course.

Secondly, the house will be always his home and his children's childhood home, unless (1) you change the house drastically to fit your style - new paint with new color, new furniture - to reflect YOU or (2) buy a new house and start AFRESH again for both of you.

As difficult as it can be, you have to on the same page about the BOOMERANG CHILDREN. It is Ok for them to come back temporarily but they have to comply to your rules (before moving in), furthermore they are to agree up front about how much time they can stay (3 months, for example).

Don't try to get into an argument with his children about this or that. Let your fiance deal with them. You will be in a lose-lose deal.

    Bookmark   September 18, 2013 at 10:23AM
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My husband's son, his wife and two babies were living with his ex wife and she was sick of them. She called my husband asked him if we could take them for awhile. At the time I was still in the hospital after surgery. Later I guess I looked up set and my doctor asked what was wrong, I told him. He patted me on the shoulder and said don't worry I will take care of this and he did. He told my husband in no uncertain terms I was not to be around any babies because I couldn't lift them or have them in my lap. Later I told my husband we can't have your son living with us, he has a temper and if he gets mad at me he will never get over it. He will get over it with his mom. I told him the same goes with his daughters.

    Bookmark   September 18, 2013 at 8:22PM
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