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Competition…Healthy?

Posted by kellula (My Page) on
Mon, Mar 25, 13 at 19:34

My SO is very competitive, pitting his kids against mine. If they play soccer, he spends the whole time cheering his kids on and giving them tips on how to win. I try to stay neutral and I end up just being silent the whole time. I even try to convince them to team up on non-bio lines instead of always being yours versus mine but he never backs me up with that.

If my kids get something (they live with me) he goes out and buys the same things for his. If they have an argument between themselves (the kids) he always takes their side , like it's some battle. And he doesn't seem to get that this will only make my kids resent him and his kids more in the long run.

Are all men like this with their kids? His kids come to stay and then they complain if my kids are invited along by him to go grocery shopping (I have to remind him to ask mine along). At the dinner table, they only speak to him. They insist on sitting next to him. I try to make him sit them separately so that everyone is mixing but it's like I'm suggesting something out of order! When I suggest the competition thing has to stop, he just denies it.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Competition…Healthy?

No all men are not like that. I don't think it is a healthy atmosphere for your kids to grow up in. If your kids won all the time or if you were as vocal as he is, I don't think he would take it as well as you are. I think you would have big problems.


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RE: Competition…Healthy?

In fact, my kids DO win all the time. That's part of the problem. Mine are active, I work hard and they have nice things. They are bright and sporty and musical. His kids are overweight and their Mom refuses to work, so they don't have the same stuff/opportunities. But I work REALLY hard. And I can't compensate for BM. I already subsidize their lives heavily and my kids miss out on the kind of lifestyle they would have with a professional Mom if it weren't for my SO's inability to contribute more. BM does not take them anywhere. Just to bars (which we pay for). She runs me down. She calls all weekend when his kids are with us and the relationship with SD is deteriorating because of this. But he says there is nothing he can do. I think deep down he is embarrassed by his kids. He feels very guilty that mine have so much and BM doesn't do anything for his kids. It's hard to see but I can't find it in myself to feel more generous towards them because the situation is jus two unfair with her not contributing a penny (not a penny) and my kids having to put up with a Mom who works all hours just to keep everyone afloat. On top of that, not being able to offer my own kids treats without feeling obliged to even the score? No way. So, as you can see, he's not the only one with issues. I am horrible. I hate the way I feel towards his kids, so resentful. It's just that I feel so unappreciated. Like nobody gets that they are only living in their same old house with a stay-at-home Mom because I work so hard. I just don't know whether that competition thing will ever go away and it really bothers me. I want him to be a Dad to my children, or at least something LIKE a Dad. But he can only do that 8and he does it very well) when his kids are not around. As soon as they are here is becomes "us and them". We are hopefully changing the situation soon so that he lives full time with us and goes to see them weekends, without bringing them here. I feel like it's the answer to all my prayers but he feels it's step in the wrong direction, that his kids will be seen even more as the "invaders" as he puts it. And he feels my relationship with them will suffer. I feel the opposite.

What happens to step relationships when there is more distance. Do things change for the better or worse? I know my kids will feel less threatened and his kids HATE sharing their Dad with us, so this seems like a solution, but is it?


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RE: Competition…Healthy?

While I know it's sometimes hard to put things down in cold writing vs spoken words (which come along with tone and if in person facial expressions/body language ect), I can't help but think you're really coming across as 'full of yourself and your kids'.

Don't your children have a 'dad or at least something like a dad' of their own? I'm also getting that you have your children each month the large majority of the time aka you're their primary residence and are with you far more than not. Ever stop and wonder what it's like to only see your kids like EOWnd? This guy sees your kids more than he sees his own. So why would it be out of line to want to do something like sit by them and converse during the dinner hour? How many dinners a month does SO sit at the table with only you and your children and gives your children sole attention? Why not do something as simple as having a bit of one on one with the children's parent (their father) by going to the store without having to take your kids along (yeah, the kids he sees all the time and I bet takes places minus his own children)?

You also seem to be implying because you work hard it is perfectly fine for you to indulge your kids a bit...but it p*sses you off (and see it as comperition) if guy also does something treat wise for his kids. Doesn't guy work hard too? Doesn't guy's kids deserve a treat now and then too? Whether or not their BM works or has money to go or do is besides the point. I'm assuming guy pays his bills and CS...why does it take away from your children if he spends a bit extra on his own children? SO does not even live with you fulltime (what ever that means) .You work hard, you make money, you pay your bills, you buy extras for your kids...so what are your children missing out on that is this guy's responsibility to provide?

I fail to see why this guy cheering his children on during an event and giving them tips on improving is a bad thing. He's encouraging his kids to try. Ever wonder what it's like to always lose? Ever wonder what it's like to for SO to listen to you always reminding him how superior you believe your kids are to his own?

Yeah, I'm sure another poster will/would tell you I'm being 'hard' on you or even 'bashing'...but it's actually not the intention. I'm in reality really hoping you don't come across in conversations with your SO as you do in your above postings. All I got out of your posts is 1) you want SO to play daddy to your kids 2) you want SO to save all his excess money to benefit you/your children only 3) you don't understand why SO doesn't like and enjoy the company of your children over his own, afterall, your children are oh so much better and oh so much more worthy of his time, intentions and finaces then his own 4) you think BM should work to provide better for his kids, do things with his kids so he won't feel like his kids must always be included in this 'or at least something dad like' to your children.

Seriously, based on what you've posted, my 2 cents think you'd be best to hold off on the 'moving in fulltime' and take things a bit slower. You already resent these children, what makes you think moving SO in fulltime and trying to elimate any type of blended family is going to make anything better? You started postings off with trying to be one big happy family with assigning table seats and ended with you and your kids having no contact with his kids (him going weekends to see his kids elsewhere)


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RE: Competition…Healthy?

>>>the situation is jus two unfair with her not contributing a penny (not a penny) and my kids having to put up with a Mom who works all hours just to keep everyone afloat.<<<

Okay, if SO only sees his kids on the weekend it sounds like he’s the NCP and pays CS. If that’s the case, BM is already contributing her share by providing food and shelter for them during the times that she has them. Yeah, she may be a crappy mother, but unless there is actual abuse, according to family law there's not much your SO can do about that.

If your SO’s finances are limited because he has to pay CS, that’s his problem. He should not be relying on you to subsidize his finances so he can provide for his kids. I would feel resentment too if my kids had to go without because I had to take care of someone else’s responsibilities.

Also, your SO’s “us vs. them” attitude is not normal or healthy for a blended family.

However, you are not blameless in this situation either.

It does sound like you want your SO to be a dad to your children and that you want to phase out the stepkids. Not only is this sooooooo NOT right for you to try and do, but it is not going to magically fix all of your problems.

Dad will feel guilty he doesn’t get to see his kids that often and he will resent the fact that he has to go elsewhere to spend time with them. And guess who he’s going to take that resentment out on? You and your kids.

And what makes you think he would even agree to this arrangement? While it may be your home he’s living in, if he’s living there, it's his home too, and what makes you think he will willingly give up spending time with his kids in his own home? And for how long do you think that will work?

I would not move with your SO until all these issues are resolved. The most serious problem is the finances. I bet your SO is all too eager to move in with you have you continue to pay for the majority of the bills.

I was planning on moving in with a man that had a 7 year old son. The main problem was that he did not make his son mind, but I also noticed that he talked about how great it would be to have “someone to share the bills with.” I realized he was looking for me to subsidize his income so he could afford his CS payments. That was not something I was willing to do.

If you’re okay with subsidizing your SO’s income, that’s one thing, but it sounds like you’re not. You resent the fact that BM gets to goof off and you have to work long hours just to keep everyone afloat. Honey, the ONLY people you should be 'floating' are yourself and YOUR children.

If you’re not happy with the way things are and SO is not willing to change, moving in together is not going to magically solve these problems. All of these issues need to be resolved BEFORE you move in together, not after.


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RE: Competition…Healthy?

I haven't read all the replies, so please forgive if I'm repeating, but dividing a group or family is...divisive.

It breaks down the loving connections that we all need to thrive.

Families need to be safe "places" in which people feel secure.

This world has plenty of challenge & competition & aggression & danger to stress all of us to the max & to shorten all our lives;
family is there to protect us & to teach us love & cooperation.

I wish you the best.


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