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help- how can I keep from getting myself worked up around bm

littlegrlzx4's picture

Ok ladies and gents- I need some advice.

Like many of you, BM makes my blood boil for many, many, many reasons. I avoid her whenever possible just to keep the additional tension out of my life. But due to our circumstances I have to see her, the SK's have to see us together and she has to see my kids at least occassionally. Right now I have to see her at swimming lessons and girl scout events where her kids and my kids are involved. I've been dealing with this for almost 4 years.

So last night I dreaded, nearly all day, sitting in an high school swimming pool even near her for an hour. The non-stop passive agressive comments have stopped becuase I don't interact with her. There's still the non stop posturing to physically, mentally and emotionally keep the SK's away from me while she's there- they don't acknoweldge me, look at me or come anywhere near me because they need to be "loyal" (I'm more upset for them than me that she does that) I hate how she goes out of her way to parent or interact with my kids when she has no right to. This just amps up the tension between us that I'm sure everyone can feel. Swimming lessons were only an hour, not the end of the world, but they really stress me out. But I'm already dreading an upcoming girl scout event where we'll both be there for a whole day AND my DH won't be there as a buffer. I've thought about not going or being involved, but that doesn't seem to be a fair solution for me or for my kids.

So what do I do? I've elminated as much of the interaction as possile. It's not reasonable for me to extend the olive branch and try and make nice because these boundaries have helped overall and she's an insane person. It's not healthy for me to get so stressed and worked up about this- to dread seeing her so much after 4 years to the point I actually wonder about moving my girls to a different school/girl scout troops just so I don't have to be around her.

Any ideas?


MikeBrady's picture

You just have to pray that you can get some sort of peace with this whole situation. The unfortunate reality is that BM isn't going anywhere any time soon. In some strange and twisted way it's almost like you two are family since you both are parenting the SK's. So you would need to go ahead and pray for peace. At this point it sounds like you are psyching yourself out just by being in the same room with her. It's almost like an anxiety issue. YOU need to be secure and confident in your place and your role. YOU are the wife now. YOU are firmly entrenched in that role and you should take pride in that and be CONFIDENT about it. This woman can't be you. There is no way she would ever measure up to you.

I honestly don't feel like you should move your daughters away. What kind of message would that send BM??? She would take TOO MUCH joy in that. And you will lose even more ground. So you just have to work on yourself and know that you have no reason to be emotionally-affected by this woman any more. You need to look past her and through her as if she was transparent. You have every reason to be proud and be confident in who and what you are. Don't let 'em see you sweat sis! Wink

"Being a step-parent is a lesson in humility & passivity....Yeah, I think that's a class I'm gonna SKIP!!!!" :0)

Chel Bell's picture

That would be a big deal breaker for me, if I was in your shoes. I would have to move my kids just to save my own sanity. It's like being around some one who abuses you, you have to cut all ties with that person to stop/minimize the abuse. I know it's extreme to move the kids, but right now she is robbing you. Robbing you of valuable time with your kids and your interaction with them. When you look at it that way, it just may be worth it to move them. In my own case, there is no way in hell that our BM will ever be around my kids, I don't care how much time goes by. (sorry, my own venting going on here.) "We cannot change the cards we are dealt, just how we play the hand."~ Randy Pausch

BorBor's picture

You just described everything I have been going thru the last 5 years, basketball, soccer, baseball.
We live in the same town as SS, in fact I met my DH at a soccer game that his son and my daughter were in.
I feel like we are in the same shoes, I think I wrote a blog about it. I know exactly how you feel about the tension,
BM has made friends with the coach's and their wives and makes sure she interacts with everyone, so they all get a big hello or hug, and then they feel the need to stay loyal to her and are hardly cordial to us .
We stopped talking years ago, at the games, but she certainly makes sure that she is known with a big laugh or whatever. I could write about this for days. Her husband is loud and aggresive and I sent her an email to please have her husband stop calling out my daughters name because it made her nervous, pluss I dont like to hearing them giving instruction to my daughter she has a coach...of course I just mentioned to them that it made my daughter nervous.
Anyway go to the soccer game and they are all laughing saying to each other that we have to give My daughter sign language and they start flinging their hands around
I cannto tell you how upsetting it can be, the tension before the game and then the aggrivation you feel after the game. It can ruin you entire day. I also hat when she chit chats with my daughter, or my son. I feel like saying "it none of your freakin business how they are"? then she want to look good in front of her friends
BM wants to be noticed and I told DH ,,that she wants US to notice her,. she got new boobs. it could be 30 degrees out and she wont wear a sweater, always int he tube shirt.
After the games she hangs around talking, to everyone we are always the first to leave. She goes to all the games even if its not her weekend. Half the time she is not even watching the game.
I keep to myself and explained to ex that this is a real hardship seeing her every weekend, but my ss and daughter want to be onthe same team and I dont want to split them up. I have been counting my time until the day I dont have to deal with this.
Oh ,, one time we got into a email confrontation and she tore down everything I was wearing, besides that she copies the clothes I have,. If I have light faded jeans with a heavy belt the next game she does,
I dont know how to give advice for this.. all I can say is bear with it for the kids, if you have a solution please pass it along,
Oh did I tellyou that once at soccer she had the trophy celebration at her house...yep guess who wasnt invited???

imagr8tma's picture

Each and every time i have to interact with my sd and the BM is around.... i act just like I would at home.

When we go to her dance receitals, practices, cheerleading events, and counseling appointments. I make sure i still speak to my sd and let her know that i care about her. I still hug her and tell her great job.

I also make a point of speaking to her mom and grandmother.

They dislike me because my dh got married to me. They are upset that 6 years ago he did not marry her. That has nothing to do with me and I will not let it affect how i treat my sd.

She should not suffer being treated differently because they can not get over themselves or their jealousy.

So it probably makes them hate me more - but in my opinion it is not about them. It is about my sd and my bd. I will treat them both the same no matter who is around.

I would do the same in your shoes. . . . You should not have to or treat the sk any different for her sake.

sparky's picture

"I actually wonder about moving my girls to a different school/girl scout troops" How much trouble would it be to move them? Would you have to drive farther or any unusual circumstances? Look at the big pic and see what you can come up with. No one wants to be in a hostile environment unless they have to be.

littlegrlzx4's picture

That's my fantasy- to just move the kids away but in reality, it's not gonna happen. First, because my kids like their school, their friends and I like the school too. If DH and I ever split, it would be a different story, but that's not the case now. It's just a fight or flight instinct mostly. She has the same rights to be there as I do, but she's an obnoxious, controling, passive agressive freak and I'm not. Wink

My kids don't notice it nearly as much as I do and I bite my tongue not to share it with them- it wouldn't be fair. I hate that she baby talks to them, touches them and corrects them any chance she gets ("oh no, what you meants to say was..." . When my BD's ask why I drop them off a different place at school EOW week the SK's aren't with us, I tell them it's because I want them to have a special drop off. Reality is that it's just one more way I try to put distance between her and my kids because BM is dropping of the SK's somewhere else at school and I don't want any part of it. Althought they are hip to some of it. BM had this obsessive behavior to "offer" to pick up my children from school or baby sit them at our house so my DH and I could go out on a date. I told her no and ultimately had to politely tell her to stop offering. Even BD6 would ask "why would she pick up E from school -that's just weird."

The good part is that everyone else at school, teachers and girl scouts is on to the freak show. She tries to be super best friends with everyone but it quickly wears out. It's somewhat vindicating to have SD's friends/parents/teachers go out of their way not to deal with BM and instead deal with me and DH. But she's still there.

It just sucks that for 50% of the time, she can impart horrible behaviors, thoughts and ideas that affect my life 100% of the time. This is the woman who told her kids she didn't have any winter hats becuse we (our house) had them ALL and that she was tried of seeing my kids wear clothes she paid for (?). This inspired the SD to steal my kid's winter hat (on the coldest day of the year) and try to bring it back to mom's house. So much wrong with this sitatuion it's hard to know where to start but like many of you, I just get tired of not being able to dam up the crap at the top of the hill that will surly spread down and poo on me and my kids.

Thanks for the kind words and good advice. Lots of this I can do nothing about and won't be able to for YEARS. It just sucks that she can't become a devout Hindu and move to India.

FallingfromGrace's picture

My kids and skids all attend the same school and play on the same teams. It is pure hell for me. To make matters worse, my DH ignores me at these events to pal around with BM and his kids. The kids wont acknowledge me in her presence. Every school event I go to for MY bio kids, I have to see her. Every sport event etc...

In fact my DH has made it clear to her that he will just "hide" any phone calls, face to face meeting, and emails from me - if they are something I dont approve of.

She knows she has the upper-hand in my life and I hate it!

"God grant me the serenity accept the things I cannot change; the strength to change the things I can; and the wisdom to know the difference.

BorBor's picture

That is just not right!, its bad enough to have to see BM but have your DH pal around with her?. and what is he hiding that you will disapprove of? Their should be nothing.

It makes me sick to see BM all the time but I know that DH will not give her the time of day...

YOur DH gave BM the upper hand

aka's picture

You kidding right? That is horrible, I would be horribly upset if my DH ignored me around the BM and even worse he will hide communication with her from you. He is downright disrespecting you.. Don't take it.

stepmom2one's picture

when I am at events BM is at. If BM is not there she asks me for everything, hangs on me, sits on my lap ext. but when BM is there she ignores me. I think it is part of the PAS. I don't go to any of SDs events anymore unless specifically invited by SD if I know BM is going to be there.

But I know you don't have that option.

mcyndy's picture

My heart breaks for you. I have some of the same issues but not to the same extent. We all need to pray for each other. Just curious... why do you call yourself FallingfromGrace?

WowjustWow's picture

If my DH did that...his butt would be out the door so fast. And if she EVER tried to come in MY house, I will have her arrested for trespassing. In fact, we have a rule that NO ONE is allowed on our property if me or DH are not home, NO ONE.

Luckily, we are on extremely limited speaking terms with our evil BM. Although, she has been trying to involve herself more recently. For a good year, they wouldn't even call or email. All contact was through the kids (which isn't fair). But recently BM has been calling, instead of having the kids call and when I'm not at a practice, she will try to talk to DH.

In our case she has BPD, so she is on some sort of "up-swing" and is trying to have contact with DH again because he cut her off. Her favorite past time is picking a huge fight with him, and when he cut her off, she freaked.

Hang in there, I'm sure it's hard, but try to explain clearly how it makes you feel to your hubby.

sparky's picture

"my DH ignores me at these events to pal around with BM and his kids"
"In fact my DH has made it clear to her that he will just "hide" any phone calls, face to face meeting, and emails from me - if they are something I dont approve of." ????????????????????????????????????????

JMC's picture


FFG, if my DH pulled that crap on me his happy ass would be out the door so fast he wouldn't know what hit him - on second thought, I'd make sure he knew! He'd be pulling my size 7 boot outta his butt! I realize there has to be some contact with BM because of the skids, but no way in hell would I put up with him 'palling' around or having unlimited contact with her. That's only asking for trouble. Sounds like he has no respect for your feelings whatsoever. No man on earth is worth allowing yourself to be so disrespected.

sarahbernheart's picture

if my FH did that to me...hang out with his EX -oh no girl, a bag a rice up his arse would not be his only problem.

"Better a diamond with a flaw than a pebble without one."

LizzieA's picture

Laugh at the insanity
Do what MikeBrady said.

I'll be working on that myself--leaving tomorrow for 5 fun filled days with the in-laws. One have-to is SD's baby's baptism. Almost freaked but no, I ain't going to let 'em get to me.
What bothered me most is the possibility that someone will want photos of DH, BM, SD and baby--is that standard at these things? If so, I'll offer to take the picture. HA HA.

Hang in there, littlegrizz.

Anon2009's picture

When DH and I got married, when it was time to do a photo with my family, what we did was my mom stood next to me, and her husband stood next to her. My dad stood next to DH, and my SM stood next to my dad. I think that because you are DH's spouse, the right thing for SD to do would be to include you in the photo next to your DH or have separate photos done-one with her, the baby, and BM (and BM's significant other/spouse if she has one), then have one taken with her, DH, you and the baby.

If possible, maybe have your DH try to find out what SD is going to do in terms of the photo arrangements. Once he finds out and tells you, you can start to mentally prepare yourself.

littlegrlzx4's picture

my DH is completely right beside me physically, mentally and emotionaly when BM is around. He listens to me vent about her, gives advice on how to deal with her and stands up for me. If he weren't, we wouldn't be married anymore. Does your DH get how wrong this is?

FallingfromGrace's picture

He thinks there is nothing wrong with it.

I just found out that last Friday, he met up with her. For what reason? I dont know. Where? I dont know.

I just found out because I read his email.

We set up a family account for them to use for communication so I can stay in the loop. He emailed both her and I told her to use that account. She did occasionally. Then one I looked at his work email and lo and behold there are emails between the two of them. There were also emails that she had sent to the "family acct" that he deleted prior to me seeing. Then he says it is my fault because I got angry one day and said "if you are going to hide everything from me then FINE - I dont care - your problem". So then we make up and he sends her another email telling her to Please go back to using the "family email for all CORRESPONDANCE no matter the content". I found that odd - No matter the content??? Later that same night, he gets in discussion with her at the boys football practice where she shows up to "talk to him". He comes home and is telling that she said this and that and she was just confused because "one minutes she is supposed to use this address and sometimes she is supposed to use that address"...he stopped mid-sentence and I said "so YOU told her to keep certain things from me - or to just email you?" Then he said "no, but she just assumed that...". Yeah, okay.

In fact, I said well I am sure she was really happy to know that you were meeting with her face to face while I had no idea about it and you were hiding it from me - and he said NO it makes me look bad, not you. I am the idiot who lets his jealous wife control him!"

"God grant me the serenity accept the things I cannot change; the strength to change the things I can; and the wisdom to know the difference.

FallingfromGrace's picture

One of the times she took us to court was because she "saw DH push me when she was coming in to drop off skid2". We did the court thing and the skids had to be interviewed etc. Everything was fine. The first thing I said to DH was that she is not welcome in my home. NOt at drop off's etc. Well my DH told me that was unfair to her, the skids, and him. They have always went in when they drop off/pick up. I said until she treats me with respect and apologizes for making false allegations, then she can come in. The court also put in the papers after that court that "it is in the best interest of the children if neither parent exits their home or vehicle during drop off and pick ups.". Well she started calling our home when she arrived. We didnt pick up the phone, just knew to send them out. Come to find out he was still going in her home on the other end. Also, as long as my car wasnt there, she would come to our door. Then if my car was there she would call. When I realized this and brought it to his attention. He sent her an email...which is one of my posts titled BM EMAILS...

"God grant me the serenity accept the things I cannot change; the strength to change the things I can; and the wisdom to know the difference."

aka's picture

This sorta happened to me. I don't think they were meeting up and talking but they were emailing back and forth and not letting me know. I snooped as well so don't feel bad. Some were about the kids some were not. I asked him to set up a joint email address and that didn't work either because she would be even more bitchy in her emails and say I don't know who is reading this but DH is the only one that should.. blah blah blah.Don't let him pull that jeolusy bull crap. That is just an exuse It is called respect and you deserve that..

Anon2009's picture

I avoid my skids BM whenever I can. We'll undoubtedly be at weddings, graduations, and some grandkids events together...but even there, I'll just ignore her. She has said some nasty stuff to me that has crossed the line and so I'm just not going to talk to her. Ever!!! DH and I have a joint email account but I just let him handle her. She's not my ex, so she's not my problem. When we had EOW visitation I caught DH leaving her a message, saying he just wants to establish a friendship with her for the kids :sick: . That was the first and last time he did that, because I pay the phone bills out of MY bank account. I am all for being CIVIL for the sake of the kids but he just couldn't comprehend that it's impossible to be friends with a crazy loon like BM.

SMom1's picture

I make absolutely no eye contact with her beady little eyes and just act like she's not there. When she says something I pretend not to hear her. I'm done with her phony act! She puts on this sweet friendly act in front of people and the kids to make it look like she's so nice, but she is EVIL when they're not around. I don't care anymore. I used to be nice for the kids, but they don't give a crap about me or my feelings, so I'm going to do what is best for me and that is to totally ignore their psycho mom. Smile

lil_teapot's picture

I cannot stand the bm in my life. I've tried...god knows how I've tried...but I just absolutely hate and detest her. It's affected me so much that it's impacted my relationship with fh. I've tried everything including thinking about the skids and how it must affect them, but nothing can stop the bitter rage I have in my heart for this arrogant little monster.
My counselor happens to know the bm since she picked him to counsel her kid when he was acting out...and she expected to have him tell my fh that he's a bad father and skids probs are all his fault, yadda yadda yadda. But the counselor could see through her and her stuff. When I've talked to him about problems with her, he understands and has said that she is in fact difficult and what not, and that my feelings are entirely valid because he experienced the same thing in just his dealings with her.
Anyways, long story short, he said that the best way to not let her get to me is to just brush her off. I've been all about avoidance since I first met her skagly wrinkled up troll face...she's definitely something you want to avoid if at all possible. But if I do have to see her, whatever she does to try to get under my skin, I have been advised to just say "Whatever..." and ignore her. I like to make it my own and throw in an eye roll too when I say But whatever you can say to just ignore her should suffice. Maybe "uh huh..." or don't say anything, just do the eye roll and walk away.
That aside, there is no way she should have any contact with your kids. She's just doing it because it bothers you for one, and for two she's trying to hump your leg...ok, that didn't come out right...she's trying to be the alpha...the chick in charge...she's trying to let you know that she is queen bee of the universe. I know what she's doing but I don't know what you should do. I'm experiencing something kinda like that with this bm--although I don't have kids, she's trying to hump my leg about the house and stuff...assert her dominance basically cuz she's a tiny little troll in a big know, a serious napoleon complex. I just ignore her now, but I honestly don't know what I would do if she tried to involve herself with my kid(if I had one). I doubt it would be kind or gentle.LOL

gertrude's picture

Do you get mad at a dog for barking? Do you get mad at a mouse for leaving droppings? No.

This is how I try to view my BM. She is not actually a human, she is a martian. Martians are mean, stupid and passive aggressive. She can't really understand what it is like to be human, because they are not. By the same token, I can't really understand her, because she is a martian. But, since she is, I don't give a good gosh darn what she thinks or says or does. I work at it, but I waste NO emotional time or effort on her. She is NOT worth it.

Don't move. Live your life. All she is is a jealous spectator. Don't let her rule you.

Look at her, take a deep breath, and see a martian that wishes she were human and envies you. then...... SMILE... (It will drive her crazy!!)