Need some advices or wisdoms from you

shakti2574September 6, 2010

Background: we have a blended family with 3 teenagers each. I was a widower and my w was divorced.

My youngest daughter, had some problems w her s sister, but apparently they worked it out. The S sis told the mom, and the SM confronted my D. Several months later now, and after some therapy, my D finally let me know her sad feeling that the S Sis had the mom to back her up while my D had nobody. In the past, i have noticed that my wife tendency was to jump on my chidren when they did or said something to her kids. I guess my w feel her kids are helpless so she needs to intervene (or is it just a motherly instinct of her part?)

What is the appropriate thing for me to say to my wife, without offending her? I would like to hear from some Step moms here.

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Very touchy ground here. I feel your daughter losing her mother makes it necessary for your wife to try intake her more under her wing rather than turn it into a your kids vs my kids thing.

It would be ideal if your DD felt comfortable confiding her hurt feelings to your wife only if your wife is able to see how that whole incident unfolded badly. Unless the kids are being really awful its best to let them (esp girls) work it out themselves.

Can you and your wife come to an agreement here or perhaps get to some counseling? I feel bad for your DD.

    Bookmark   September 6, 2010 at 11:59PM
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Thanks Cat for your comment.

Yes, this is a very touchy ground. I am in a way very aware of the reality of "Cinderella" and was awakened by one the women I had dated, who told me that I had to leave all my assets (including those of my late wife) to her instead of my children. Of course, I left her shortly after that.

I will take your comments to heart.

    Bookmark   September 7, 2010 at 1:08AM
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Shakti, my mom is divorced and my SF is also a widower. They did not get remarried until almost all "kids" on both sides were at least in college, so it's not quite the same. My mom always bent over backwards to see my SS's side of things, to the point where *I* sometimes felt like she didn't have my back. Now, years later, I have no complaints - everyone has a good relationship with everyone else, and I'm not sure what, if anything, my mother should have done differently.

In my opinion, this is a different situation than a lot of the posters are in. Our sKids either have good or at least decent Moms, and the ones who have appalling BM's tend to know that their BM's are not what one would hope for in an ideal mother. Your kids, (presumably), had a good mother, who is now gone, and now SM is all that they have.

Maybe you could just tactfully remind your wife of this? And explain that your daughter perceives SM to be doing whatever - so you're not saying that your wife is doing X, just that your daughter sees it that way due to the past happenings in life. That might be a less confrontational way to put it. Your wife probably has no idea of how her SD feels, and very few women want to be the Wicked SM. So hopefully a gentle reminder that the same behavior on her part will naturally be viewed differently by her BD and by a Mom-less SD will help her to think twice sometimes.

    Bookmark   September 7, 2010 at 9:11AM
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Obviously your wife is aware that your children no longer have a mom to go to so my thoughts are (a) she is a little on the dense side or (b) its the cinderella complex and she will look after her own first and foremost... Trying talking to her but if that fails, I would tell her that it is unacceptable to confront your children in regards to issues - she should go to you first and then you can address the issue yourself (or together). It is not your wife's job to assume the motherly role with your children, it is your job to assume both roles of mother and father to them and sometimes that means running interference between your wife and them.

    Bookmark   September 7, 2010 at 11:51PM
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"- she should go to you first and then you can address the issue yourself (or together). It is not your wife's job to assume the motherly role with your children, it is your job to assume both roles of mother and father to them and sometimes that means running interference between your wife and them."

Totally agree. Your daughter needs a gentle touch here. It's not as if you divorced and she can go confide in her mum when she likes. This is quite a delicate situation and I hope your dear wife is able to see her hand in this and make ammends to your DD. Hopefully then will grown and devolope a lovely friendship-but first things first and your DW needs to realize your daughter is hurting.

I'm glad you posted. Please update when you are able.

    Bookmark   September 8, 2010 at 1:35AM
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Thanks for all the responses thus far and you have given me the courage to approach the issues.

This explains why my DD15 has asked for professional counseling because she has felt anxious and depressed. Initially, I attributed her problems due to the fact that her sister is about to leave home for college and D15 would be the lone ranger at home. The T alluded to the issues with my W to me, but did not go much into details. Now I understand the fear and concerns from my children. I asked my D18, who is about to go to college, who cried and shared with me the same feeling, that was W would jump in and defend her children when a conflict arose between them. My children felt that it was not the SM's place to get in their face so-to-speak, because the conflicts were peer's issues between them. Of course, how can my children respond or defend themselves when the SM confronted them for they were probably scared. They still were the kids and my W was the adult and head of household.

For example, my SD14 one day took my D18's rental DVD to her room without saying anything, making D18 pay for the late fee. Then another occassion, D18's set of DVD disappeared, she asked everyone in the house, who all responded "No, I did not take it." Miraculously, the DVD set reappeared 1 month later. D18 had no reason to believe her own sisters took it because they shared 2 adjoining room, so D18 pointed the blame to the Step siblings. I was aware of it, but stayed out, but then my wife confronted my D about why she accused her children of lying.

Unfortuntely, my W's action of defending her children, (not young, all in the teens), has made my motherless children feel they had no one to turn to for support because the W now is perceived as being on the other side of the fence to them.

I understand life's reality of "step mother, husband's children". WHen push come to shove, the step mother will take care of her own children first. In the same vein, I left a beautiful date who flat out called my children, "b*tches", and demanded all my assets including that of my late wife, left to her when I die.

    Bookmark   September 8, 2010 at 7:58AM
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