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Very long intro post...don't judge me too harshly!

MissElphaba's picture

I met my SO almost 5 years ago and it was not a typical dating situation in that – neither of us really wanted to be in a relationship. We knew that we had a lot of fun spending time together but he’d just gotten out of a bad marriage and I’m considerably younger than he is and wanted to keep having all the fun I could have! Of course that never works – because people get attached and without any set-in-stone expectations, everything is a mess. We stuck it out for about a year. It was a terrible and drawn out split-up, because we still really enjoyed each other, but neither of us was willing to give up what we wanted for the other person…we separated for several months. We each had other relationships and didn’t really make much contact with each other.

I do have to admit I took the breakup really poorly – even though I had equal blame in its end. I got some counseling for my issues during the split, because I knew I needed to be able to like and want to be around myself before I ever expected someone else to commit to me. After a while though, we did start talking again and after a few phone chats and the all but constant texting it was clear where everything was headed so we had conversations with the people we had been dating and decided to give it a try. It was a very different experience, to find ourselves in the same place emotionally and that we wanted similar things. We actually dated and it was wonderful. We are not married at this point in time, and that works well for us. It’s not something we haven’t talked about or want – but at this time, we’re content.

My SO is quite a few years older than myself and he has a daughter from a previous marriage. She’s now 10 and when things with us first began (before our break) she saw me more as a friend than as competition…and now that has completely changed. I think it largely changed when her mother no longer saw me as a passer-by, but as a new fixture. When we got back together it was icy, to say the least, and I really did not care. BM is a hag and always has been – she cheated the entire way through her marriage with SO, was verbally abusive, and is just dumbfounded that he got fed up and no longer found her worth “working things out” with. She thinks that’s my fault, because I hold him to standards and he respects me.

SO’s daughter really only became a problem within the last year and a half and it rammed up when I got pregnant and we had our son. I think between her and BM they never really thought the baby existed or refused to acknowledge that it was going to come to pass. I’ll never understand the stupidity that runs through BM’s veins, but I recognize the same blank stare on her offspring.

Anyway – after we’d gotten back together, she decided she was going to push his limits to see “how much he really cared about their daughter” by withholding time and saying they have plans…and then daring him to tell her she wasn’t allowed to go to whatever fun fest there is, and also by calling him on a Friday and telling him it was his weekend and she was dropping her off at x-time, even though we already had plans. If he said “No, seahag, I have plans.” The response was, “Fine, I will just tell our daughter you don’t want to spend time with her because you’re too busy with MissElphaba.” ALL that drama.

Now, the custody is supposed to be split, but that is not how this works. BM took her and moved an hour away, changed schools and all that – and now gets CS. SO sees her maybe once or twice a month because of the way this has been handled. I don’t push him one way or another, because it doesn’t seem to do anything useful. However – in addition to that, BM pulled offspring out of *favorite sport* because A- the girl wasn’t that great at it and B- she was too lazy to take her – then told her that SO wasn’t going to pay anymore so she couldn’t do it. Wtf? So, that was several nights of us trying to figure out how that was going to get paid for. (At some point in there we moved in together and all of these antics melt together for me.) Although, it never came to pass, because suddenly she came down with some terrible foot issue and it ruined her shining career…but that’s a whole other issue. Additionally – she knows that he does not have the financial backing to go back to court.

That was around the time we revealed I was pregnant, we waited as long as possible. I was even showing a lot. Immature, I know, but I wanted to keep the happy to ourselves. After that offspring regressed – she needed to be carried places, couldn’t pour her own juice, couldn’t reach in for the 10,000th popsicle that day, needed SO to turn on the shower for her, etc… but she was superficially excited about the baby.

Then he arrived. I’ve never been so in love with anyone in my life, he’s perfect. He’s the happiest little guy. The seahag has seen him twice and she is so seethingly jealous, that she has tried to withhold offspring even more. Now, I really don’t get involved, and maybe that’s wrong of me – but I have my own to worry about and I’ve seen enough posts about these women going bananas about stupid little stuff. After the last time I saw the hag, when she pushed her way into my apartment so she could talk to SO and play with the cat who kept trying to get away from her…I told him – public drop offs only, and DS9mths and I will NOT be there.

Now we’re at this past weekend. I hate letting offspring hold my baby because she whips him around and is careless. He is at the stage where he’s arching and lunging…I lost it on SO about it. I don’t allow her to walk around with him, SO does. I told him if she ever drops him or hurts him in any way – I will never EVER have her anywhere near us again. “Blood” relative or not, my son – my rules. Needless to say, we fought. “You don’t like my daughter.” “You guys used to get along so well.” “Don’t take her mother’s behavior out on her.” You know the drill.

I can’t abide baby talk in a 10 year old. She is her mother. She is jealous of the baby, because it “gets more stuff” than her. My parents bend over backwards to make sure they ALWAYS have something for her when we go somewhere or do something. Her dad gets her stuff, and her mom spoils her. She has NO manners. We were at a friend’s home this weekend. Now we are very close with them, but I still feel like when you are in someone else’s home you act accordingly. She’s going through their cabinets, fridge, and closet for things to eat/drink. :jawdrop: I was mortified and SO kept trying to stop her, but she’s simultaneously on her new cell phone texting her mom and not listening! She just says, “What? I’m hungry. Mom said blah-blah-blah.” I took my baby into the kitchen so settle down. Who does that?! Then, after dinner – we’re enjoying a drink and chatting…she’s playing games, pretending she doesn’t know how to spell, and LAYING all over her dad without shoes on. Although, the pretend thing may be false – she’s reading well below her grade level at school. Which is our fault because we don’t make her read…the once or twice a month she’s here?

I love my SO…but sometimes I wonder if it’s enough to keep in this situation. I’ve really just scratched the surface… Before the baby, I didn’t really notice all of these things as much, but now everything I see I wonder if I really want him to have to grow up with all of this. I’d love to know how to separate myself from her when she’s around, but that’s why I’m here. I need help!


MissElphaba's picture

Thank you!

I agree and when I've been pushing to stop the manhandling of DS, I get two different responses...but they essentially say the same thing. SO says, "She'll be careful." and SD says "I hold my cousin all the time at my moms!" (Her cousin is beyond walking age!) After cutting into my palms with my fingernails this weekend, I will talk to SO about how it can be handled without my just saying NO.

MissElphaba's picture

It's nice to know I'm not CRAZY! Based on the looks I get when I say something about it, you'd think I really was green. He's seen the tiger mom a few times, and you're right...he doesn't like it and neither will she.

Teas83's picture

I don't have much advice for you because I'm in a very similar situation, but I can definitely commiserate.

I used to be close to SD6 until my DD was born. SD was fairly well-behaved up until then so we didn't have to discipline her much. I also didn't know what it meant to love a child like your own until I had DD - I always thought that I loved SD but it turns out I didn't.

My SD gets jealous of DD (now 17 months) for the same reason yours does - apparently DD is "luckier" than SD because "she has more stuff". I always point out to her that she has lots of things too, it's just that they're at her mom's house.

I worry about my DD so much in this situation. BM has done so many horrible things to me. She made a false claim to CPS about me when she found out I was pregnant. The case worker told me that if DD had been born already, they'd be investigating me on behalf of her as well. If BM does this again, SD will no longer be welcome in my home. I have to protect my child.

SD is also quite rough with DD, so I try not to leave them alone together even if it's just for a moment. There have been several times lately where I leave the room and then hear DD start crying shortly after. When I go back to check on her, SD always has some excuse as to why DD started crying. I think SD is doing something to DD when I leave the room though.

I've started sort of disengaging from SD. I won't allow her to be left alone with me. There have been too many false accusations towards me from BM, so I always want someone else present when I'm with her. I don't put in any extra effort with her anymore. I used to do so much for her but it went unappreciated for too long. I also try to leave the house for awhile with DD each weekend that SD is there. I can only handle her and my husband's crappy parenting for so long.

SMto3's picture

My skids said the same thing about the having more stuff. I took the advice of a poster on here and told them they had YEARS worth of stuff while new baby will just start to get stuff now. It may seem like new baby is getting a lot of stuff and she might be right now, but that in no way compares to the amount of clothing, games, electronics, outings, and time they have already had with SO. It's annoying but a reality for these skids in that they usually feel competitive towards new sibling.

Teas83's picture

I've told her that too, in addition to telling her that her things are at her mom's house. Reassuring her is an ongoing thing.

MissElphaba's picture

I felt bad about all the "loot" DS was getting in the beginning because it is a lot, and with it being the first little one for my family... they're over the moon with spoiling him. parents went out of their way to get her several gifts...which we had to force her to show appreciation for, and her BM takes her shopping all the time (on her mother's dime). I gave up sympathy, because I've tried to get involved and I just get my nose rubbed in it.

SMto3's picture

Welcome Miss Elphaba! It seems like SD is definitely exhibiting a lot of the "normal" behavior in steps. I think a good way to overcome these things is to have open communication with SO regarding expectations of her so that you're both on the same page. Also, when she does things, CALL HER OUT ON IT! She talks like a baby? Ask her why she's speaking in that tone. Tell her that she's talking like a baby and it doesn't sound cute because, well, she's not a baby! As for the holding DS, explain to her that she has to be extra careful in holding him. Tell SO that you do not want her to hold him until she is able to hold him without whipping him around. Then enforce it. If you let her hold him, watch her and guide her in what she's doing. If she begins to mess up, you and SO both should tell her she's doing it wrong and take the baby away. Key thing is, you guys need to present a united front. Don't let her see that you guys are divided on an issue, especially something like that because she'll try to convince DAADDDDYYYY that she didn't mean to and is sowwy! You're not going through anything a lot of us haven't already been through.

MissElphaba's picture

I put him first too...because SO doesn't necessarily make him 2nd...but he doesn't put him 1st.

blayze's picture

Well, welcome to the club. I don't have much to offer except to tell you to never be afraid to stand up for and protect YOUR child against everyone. That's your job. No shame in that. Smile And when SO pulls the "You don't like my daughter" routine don't try to reassure him that you do... just admit that you don't. Tell him that you TOLERATE her for him. That shut my man right up. Blum 3