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Now I understand why I am always upset!

CLove's picture

Reading through the different forums and postings, I have now been able to put words to the things that I have been hurt by and that have long frustrated me to the point of insanity! It should be freeing and lightening the load to vent and read others vents, but I am worried that it is adding fuel to the fire that is already there, making it larger and rage out of control.

I have learned the following:
#1. I am not Mom. I will never be Mom. I knew this upfront, and when the kidlings asked me what to call them, I simply said "My Name". I know this and am ok with this. I gradually learned that anything I did that was "mom-ish" would endear me and cause "I love yous" to pop out unexpectedly, and cause insane jealousy from BM, make her cry and test that "Loyalty Bind".

#2. I have Responsibility without Authority. What does that mean exactly? That means that when I am told that DH is taking SD10 for Taco Bell, I absolutely have no right to then say "oh no don't do that she will get sick, and she is already borderline obese". No I must simply say to darling little SD10, after Taco Bells been consumed, and she tells me she is sick and going to throw up, I must then say that "Im sorry your tummy hurts, sweetheart, here let me hold your hair while you throw it back up". Then I must grit my teeth while SD17 hovers at the bathroom door and shouts "XX don't do that! You always make yourself throwup on purpose!!!"
That means picking up SD17 on a cold dark night on a busy street in a city with the #1 fatality shootings in the state, picking her up because she decides she cant deal with BM's boyfriend and "just needs to go to dads".
That means asking the kids to pick up and then them shouting at you and arguing, calling you a nag and controlling.

#3. I get to watch kidlings in action with "mini-wife syndrome". What does that mean to me? That means when I want to kiss DH, he pulls away because it upsets daughter dearest, who always likes to make comments "that's so disgusting! That's gross! Why do you have to do that" when she catches us. That means that when I hug H, daughter dearest #2 shoves her body in between. That means that little one asks 20 times in an hour "wheres Daddy? Whens Daddy coming home?(if he went to the store quickly), can you call Daddy? Ask him when exactly hes coming home? Get watch kids hang all over him, while I sit alone on the couch during movies.

#4. I have learned to disengage. What that means to me is: I do not do SD17's dishes AT ALL. DH does them or asks her to do them. I do not ask them to pick up their stuff unless I absolutely HAVE To. I do not speak with SD17 unless NECESSARY. I do not ask SD17 to help with ANYTHING. I do not ask her to feed the family dog, or check on his water. I do not ask her to check on bunny. No requests to clean anything, or help cook family dinner. NADA. I do not ask for anything. Period. I also do not cook her favorite foods. I do not call her to the dinner table. I don't text her cool funny pics, and I do not ask about her illnesses/medication/how her day went. I walk on eggshells when around SD17. SD10 - I rarely ask her to do anything anymore either. I don't expect anything from her, don't remind her to brush teeth, take a shower, or clean bunny cage/feed bunny. DH does that.

#5. I have learned how to grit my teeth when:
~ they sit in front of television, laughing, while their dinner trash sits around them for 3 hours.
~ SD17 yells at her father and disrespects him.
~ SD17 whines and complains.
~ SD17 goes to DADDDDDDDDY for money because she has no job.
~ SD17 badgers DAAAAAADDDDDYYYY for a ride to Wal-Mart/target/mall/store for her makeup/hair/other products and general shopping because she has no license/car.
~ SD17 lies about anything/everything.
~ SD17 lounges on couch when I am cleaning/dusting/cooking/sweeping/organizing. And watches tv, without offering to help.
I have learned much more, but that's all I can handle right now.


Steptococci's picture

Admitting you have a problem is the first step? Wink
Sounds like you've definitely learned a lot. I know that feeling of the more I read and the more I learn the more annoyed/frustrated/angry/overwhelmed/what-was-I-thinking??? that I get sometimes.
But after awhile you calm down. You realize you still love the person you married. You take a deep breath, pour yourself a glass of wine and realize these people aren't actually your problem as long as you can cohabitate peacefully.
And *2* stepdaughters, sheesh! 1 is enough for me. Virtual hug to you.

CLove's picture

Thanks, I really needed it today. Having a mini-melt-down. Feel like screaming and crying and say the eff word a lot. And I hardly ever curse.

Co-habituating peacefully means that I keep quiet and walk on egg-shells. Which believe me - I am one of those people that always has a wise-crack, or commentary.

Virtual hugs back.

CLove's picture

She is. and on anti-depressants and other medications so I tread carefully, and her sister bows and scrapes. I feel like emotional volcano. Quiet and then all of a sudden "explosion"!

InNeedOfGuidance12's picture

Well this is my life in a nutshell. I have DD2stb3 who helps with chores and SD14 who floats around like a princess with her nose in her phone. Sometimes I feel bad for her, while she may have things done for her (by DH, not me) she definitely is not part of this family or household. No one seems to miss her on the weeks she's not here, not DH or DD.

And I agree, 2 SDs... what a handful.

CLove's picture

inneedofguidance - you just basically outlined things right there! She has been in 50/50 custody between our house and BM's house for the past 3 years and that makes life non-continuous, so I have SOME sympathy, but that also makes her a "permanent guest" with all the rights to open the fridge and eat whatever she wants, use the shower, hang with the animals and bring them inside if she wants. But she isn't connected to the household in any strong way, and we BOTH do not miss her on her away times. YUP. Her own father. Her sister does to a degree...her sister (SD10) is a complete sweetheart angel, BTW, and always listens and is respectful and loving and kind to me. Hopefully she will transcend the "terrible teens", or I will have enough in my "emotional bank account" to live through that.

IslandGal's picture

Dear Lord!! How the frig are you still sane? Or not a raging alcoholic? Or a major stoner? I tell you this would drive me down any of those roads. You do realize that this is ALL on your DH?? Hes stuffing up as a parent and teaching them how to be disrespectful to allowing them to be disrespectful to you.

SD17 not cleaning up after herself?? Both kids making nasty comments when you're affectionate..and he pulls away? That is beyond disrespectful!! Ask him who the hell is he married to? You or them? Put your foot down and have a talk to all of them. You can fix this by forcing him to step up. Speak up..tell the snots to suck it up and get your man to pull his head out of his ass. Or put up with it..i sure as shit wouldn't.

CLove's picture

Islandgal - I think I wasn't clear - sorry! The youngest when she sees us together, she comes up for a "family hug". These used to start as her hugging dad only, but he turned it around to an "everyone hug". So that's improved over time. The SD17, she is who she is, and he has had shouting matches with her. He cant put her out, so we just leave her alone and hope for the best. She doesn't party and has no friends, or boyfriend, she doesn't do drugs (unless you count anti-depressants) and isn't an ax murderer, so he feels she can do what she wants otherwise.

We did have "the talk" last night, whereby I said, "sweety, this is what you need to say in response to when SD17 sais 'I was here FIRST, just so you know' "

Him: "This is the woman I chose, DEAL WITH IT!!!!
- I had to spell it out to him. So when she calls me controlling or a nag, that what I going to say as well - "this is our home, my home, so pick up. If you don't like me asking you to do this, too bad - deal with it."

Of course I must say this in front of DH, because of her tendency to lie and twist things around.

- Oh and yes I do indulge in the above escapisms every now and again - typically when she is not around because she goes into full on attack mode if I am drinking. I am hoping I can drive her to her mothers house at 18...permanently.

TexasPickles's picture

One of the hardest parts of my "awakening" (still a work in progress) was accepting that my step woes actually stemmmed from my DH, not my skids.

Just sayin'...

Have you read up on detachment? It saved my sanity and marriage (so far).

CANYOUHELP's picture

That is hard Texas, hits you hard after you finally realize what is actually going on in your own life... The site and experienced posters taught me so much about myself and my own life that I did not even realize...

CLove's picture

I have been reading up on attachment/disengagement/disassociation technique. I wont do her dishes or pick her up or drop her off anywhere anymore. I will not think of her as family, just an occasional roommate. So I will be able to smile and say hello, but other than that - no advice and no caring-ness. No special dinners, either, of things I know she likes.

CANYOUHELP's picture

It is hard to want to be a meaningful part and then realizing wanting to be part of this fantasy family is hopeless, and useless emotion. They do not want you, and likely never did and never will. It is not you; it is your position in his life, that creates this insane jealousy that only grows with your presence over time.

Your husband is the only one who can reign in the SD emotion/action and if he is a weakling like mine, your only haven is to disengage from it all and more and more over time.

The consequences of his inaction are far more reaching than to us, as SM's. It is seen in their educational level, emotional development, personal relationships and success in life. Enabled selfish people are taught by their parents that they are too great to work hard, try hard and care about others.

When your husband is a doormat to Skids, the SM's relationship with the Skids is hopeless-- regardless of who she is and what she does.

CLove's picture

Yes - it is super hard. The younger one - she loves me, and I look after her a little bit, and she relies on me to "help her out". But I had "the talk" last night - DH needs to be the parent, and be more on top of things, like cleaning and whatnot. He also needs to verbally approach SD17 and tell her that I am who he has chosen - so deal with it. He sais that he has told her over and over again, but she still likes to say "just so you know I was here FIRST". Im like, "geesus, girl, you were here before me, but Ill be here after you get your buttocks off my couch and out of my house!"

He's less of a doormat, and more just frustrated and resigned. They've had many many shouting matches. Shes a b!tch, like her mother. Until she turns 18, he has responsibility to care for her (IE provide food and shelter). Shes on medication for depression and is always crying "why are you choosing HER over ME".
I had to tell him "next time she sais this your response should be the following:"
I love you both, you are the child and she is the adult, and she is the person I chose. Show her respect. Period.

CLove's picture

Dadswifeorwhatever - I agree. I think what is happening is that I am perhaps reflecting and amplifying the emotions to a degree, but that I am also putting words to the emotions and thusly they receive validation. That in itself is freeing. And gives me a platform on which to speak of things with DH.