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Why did you come here? What have you learned or gained? And where are you now in this thing called Steplife?

justanothergurlNJ's picture

I've been here 5 years and posters have come and gone and come back with new user names. With the last post and everyone coming together to defend 1 poster it made me think of how this place at one time in my life was my home my salvation some times. It's always been a great group.

So I'll start.

I found this sight with a Google search on step families. The Babycenter and Cafe Mom sites weren't working for me. Their happy lives were too fairy-taleish for me. I was living in hell. With a intrusive, BPD BM. A ball less SO 2 SS's that were and still are poorly behaved, PAS'd and when they were around they were BM's very own FBI-CIA Secret Service. I needed a place to vent, get advice or just pass time when I was held up in my room when the crotch droppings were visiting.

I have learned to put my foot down and if it means on SO's balls then so be it. Establish boundaries with BM and if it means put my foot down on SO's balls the so be it. }:). I have learned to establish "my space" when the skids are with us. I have learned that there is no grey area if I am not pleased with something open your mouth and yes even to the skids. I have learned disengagement and not my skunk not my stink. I do not get involved with things I consider parental, school, behavior (unless they are in my presence) I do not get myself upset or bothered. SO and BM discuss these matter via email as the CO states. If he asks for advise I give it but I do not give any unsolicited advise. If those 2 chose to raise their off spring like wild feral animals it is not my concern.

There are now set boundaries with BM, with SO and where my involvement with HIS kids starts and ends and there is a precedent set for how the boys are expected to act out in public and in our home. And I will correct the behavior as I see fit. SO has gotten on board I think he has been embarrassed by his kids 1 to many times. It's been a long road but with perseverance and consistency we've gotten there.

Where am I now. I am a place of contentment for the most part. We have our bumps in the road. SO has become a pro at dealing with BM. She for the most part stays on her square. Everyone once in awhile she feels froggy and attempts to take a leap but SO put her right back in her place.

Things are manageable and SO and I are happy.


MelAnn's picture

I'm new here. I joined about 5 or so months ago. My SO and I are to be married in May of next year. I have two kids (son, 10 and daughter, 7); He has a daughter, 7. We all moved in together (after dating 2.5 years) in June. There were some situations that came up and I felt I needed some people who may understand as I have divorced friends but none who have married and been step-mom (no, I'm not officially one yet but it's coming). I did a search and found a few - I find this one to be very helpful as everyone is very honest and up front with information. So far the main thing I have learned is that I had unrealistic expectations that we'd be a 'blended' family - especially right away!!! My feelings are getting hurt less due to that enlightenment!

hereiam's picture

I found this site because I felt bad about not letting my SD, her husband, and their 2 kids "stay" with us.

I didn't feel guilty for long.

I did realize that many step parents have it much worse than I ever did. Although BM is psycho and was the biggest problem, my SD25 was (and is) nothing compared to some. She's not without issues but...

Evil3's picture

I googled "do narcissists ever get what's coming to them," and this site popped up. I thought I died and went to heaven. I became obsessed with this site and read my brains out. I learned what Mini Wife Syndrome was and what Disneyland Dad Syndrome was and that I wasn't crazy. I realized why 15 years of counselling wasn't working and that it wasn't my fault. I had always found counsellors that were pro-CoD and that I was a cow for hating my SKs' guts the way I did. I knew I was co-dependent and I knew that just sitting back and taking the crap wasn't working, but I didn't know what to do instead. Thanks to this site, I learned what I could do to make sure I get treated like the queen I am. I've grown exponentially as a result of coming here every day. This site has been even more cathartic than all the counselling I went to. I was able to find a good fit in a counsellor who was trained and educated on step family issues and I get decent support and not blamed and told how horrible I am for hating my SD's guts with a passion. I learned that it's OK to hate a hatable person and I no longer allow crappy treatment. I was able to get my SKs launched finally, and I am enjoying the house I bought and live in with no adult SKs living there. I would never have been able to think of strategies to get that unless I came here.

Livingoutloud's picture

I came years ago because my exSDs were running my SO and mine lives. I since then left him few years ago and stopped coming here. I am now married and am a SM of adult SKs again. So I am back under new name

Totalybogus's picture

I've been here for 7 years. I've seen posters change names; however, I couldn't tell you who is who if I fell over them. I've kept the same user name the entire time.

I don't post much anymore. I feel for a lot of you because I remember being in your hell.

I came here because I had a very intrusive BM. She stalked us and broke into my house. We lived through that type of behavior and the constant tug of war for 7 years. In 2009, my husband and I relocated 5 hours away. We are still in the same state. It definitely saved our marriage. The kids have since aged out and we really don't have anything but occasional moments that we have to be in the same place.

I sometimes feel bad that I insisted we leave because I really think it changed my husband's relationship with his kids. He still has a great relationship with the oldest one, but he has missed a lot of her school and sports events over the years. The younger one does not communicate much with him. Neither really go out of their way to speak to me, but they are respectful and they are good girls.

My beef really was never with them. I couldn't live my life catering to another woman's demands or the constant feeling of violation because she would let herself into my house when I wasn't home.

Tuff Noogies's picture

i lurked for a few years out of just normal stepfamily issues (yup, google brought me here but it was a benign search, nothing like "i hate my sk's" or anything.)

about two years later, someone said something i felt strongly enough about to create a user account and comment my response.

shortly thereafter, WWIII hit between dh and MIL and i've been on a STalk roll ever since Wink

what have i learned? the biggest thing is you cant control others, and you certainly cant care more than the bio-parents. i've also learned to appreciate the boys - even tho' some things are MADDENING, there are others that have it FAR worse. if my only problems are lack of respect, a$$#ole attitude, and failure to learn how a light switch functions, then i really dont have it too God-awful bad.

i have also learned that some of the most awesome friend experiences CAN be had with a group of anonymous people. i luv ya ladies!!!

where are we now? dumb@$$ is irrelevant. MIL is a non-factor - dh talks to her occasionally but their relationship will never be the same. oss is for all intents and purposes launched, but still stuck to MIL's hip. lurch will do just fine in life, he and i are tight. and kaos is just kaos - sometimes good, sometimes "meh", sometimes i just escape.

Gimlet's picture

I came here because no one in my personal life was experienced enough with step parenting to give me the wisdom and tough love I so desperately needed. I'm glad my first post was under an old user name, because it was cringe worthy. I was looking at things upside down and fighting with my DH (not married then) constantly.

I've learned so much. How to disengage when needed, how to let things go, not to take some things to heart. I've gained perspective (so many people have it much harder than I do!) and I have gained a community of people, many of whom I consider friends.

DH and I are at a pretty good point. We are in it for the long haul and communicating and getting along better than ever.

Stepmomed's picture

Cafemom is a joke!!!! It's full of trolls who obviously are BMlike minded idiots. I'm legally a step mom for now until DH terminates his rights. I cannot wait!!!! I've learned SD's are worse than SS's and I am not the only one with a psycho BM.

CloudCuckooLand's picture

I found this site 8 years ago. the skids were consequences of BM and DH's crappy parenting and they initially latched on to me like limpets because I paid attention to them. I knew the very first time I met them that if I stayed plugged in we would end up with them full time. They would want to live with us and would suck me dry as they used me to fill gigantic BM and DH shaped holes.

I freaked out, panicked and tried to control everything for a year. I finally got burned out and googled step children. As I'm writing the search term google offered several search options. One of them was 'step in a blender', which spoke to me! I followed that search thread and found this site. I binge read Step Talk for a week and very slowly started my disengagement.

This site gave me a framework for understanding the dysfunctional dynamics that I had both married into and contributed to. It helped me clarify my boundaries and feel good about setting them. It has also been a source of support when we started having our own children and the shitstorm this created in BM and skids.

I love this site but struggle with the way that memvers promote disengagement as a skill in step life and yet often don't apply that same skill here. Rather than disengaging, members will attack, hold grudges, mock, badger and fight with OP's. If you think someone is a troll or dillusional don't respond, don't acknowledge, move on. It sometimes makes me question the 'wisdom' that is offered here - if they behave the same way in their steplife as they do on here then maybe their role in any problems is far bigger than they are owning up to on here.

Acratopotes's picture

I searched for how to get rid of a hateful step daughter and here I am....

This site gave me the disengagement link and my life turned for better...

Major Blunder's picture

I found the site like most everyone else, a Google search. I came here because I was wondered what I had done wrong over the years, I am a look in the mirror type of person. I never hear outside the digital world about others who felt like I did as a Step Parent and figured it had to be me. It was a relief to find out I wasn’t alone.
I have learned that a lot of what I was already doing like disengaging (although I didn’t know it had a name) were the right things to do. I have learned that even though I have a difficult situation it could be worse ( no toxic Bio Parents) and I have learned again that I am not alone.
Where am I now in StepLife? Basically the same place but armed with knowledge that I didn’t have before, a feeling of belonging with other like minded people and I would like to believe that I have a gained a bunch of anonymous , digital friends, mostly women, but that’s actually nothing new to me.
I work with a team of women, besides my GSS I’m the only male at home, etc etc.

classyNJ's picture

I found this site by googling "hate the ex-wife" and "Step parent support group"

I am not a bio and was never fond of children. I came here for some insight on what a step parent roll is and to learn how to deal with my feelings of jealousy towards the crotch that will forever be attached to DH life.

My DH has always told me that his boys have two parents. All he wants from the SO in the parents life is to help guide his children on an honest path in life, be there for them if the boys cannot talk to the parents and show support to the parent. That's what I do. That and drive all over creation but I think I'm doing pretty dang good in the step parent department.

As far as the crotch BM - I have learned from all you fine people to IGNORE THE WHORE

Right now I think my SS18 loves me, SS14 likes me. They both have told me they are grateful to me because DH was a dick before I came in to their lives. That's where I am in step life.