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Will it ever end??

Slavamom11's picture

I have been a stepmom for 7 years now. My Stepdaughter was 5 and I had a 1 year old at the time her father and I met. She is currently about to turn 12 years old. Her father and I have been struggling to deal with her high conflict bio-mom for many years. Last year tensions between us and her grew. She took us to court 4 times. Once for child support, another to switch counties so we now go to court in a different county, she filed a restraining order against me and the last things was a contempt case against my husband. They are currently going to court to decide what school she will attend next year. Everytime some form of drama ends, she manages to create more drama. We try our best to parallel parent and we do not engage in any arguement she tries to throw our way. My stepdaughters behavior and attitude are difficult to deal with because when her mother cannot place blame on either me (stepmom) or her father, the blame is placed on my stepdaughter. Her and I have a strong bond and are connected. I feel as though her mother is angered by our relationship and is encouraging my stepdaughter to behave negativley towards her father and I. The bio-mom is in and out of different relationships often and moves around a lot. She works nights and is not able to spend sincere quality time with her. The bio-mom encourages my stepdaughter to lash out and blame us for any sitution or misunderstanding that arises. I went to one of my stepdaughters basketball games alone once because husband had to work. After the game I went to congratulate her on the game. I walked up, placed my hand on her shoulder and she quickly jerked herself away from me, rolled her eyes and walked over to her mother as they starred at me and laughed. It was a complete shock sense I have been attending her games since she was 6. Everytime the conflict or drama is over, we are served with more papers, suprised by a welfare check or drowing in attitude by my stepdaughter and the false allegations her bio mom plants. Will this ever end?? How can I help the sitution?? 


ldvilen's picture

There is very little, if anything, you can do to help the situation.  PAS (Parenteral Alienation Syndrome) is real and, unfortunately, can work.  However, given your role, there is very little you can do to help.  This burden lies with your DH.  It is his ex- and his child.  As you’ve already seen, any little thing you do, such as put your hand on SD’s shoulder when her mom is around, can and will be used against you. 

With a HCBM, it will never end.  She’ll be going after her ex- and you too, and possibly your own children.  However, if you want to be with this man, you cannot worry about how many mind games she plays. You will not be able to control her.  As such, you need to concentrate on your relationships and your household and let your DH deal with his ex.  This is his ex- and not yours.  Your DH ideally should have been proactive with his daughter long ago.  I’m guessing he wasn’t because you barely mentioned him in your post, other than to note that he was a victim too, which he may be, but what has he been doing for years about this?  Letting BM call the shots? 

With BMs, because they do carry so much power over their children vs. bio-dads, it is a very difficult slope for one to travel to counter someone else’s attempt at alienating the kids.  And even given that, PAS’ing could work.  And, you’re not even into the teen years yet.  Your DH has to be able to somehow counter BM’s digs at his (and your) character without criticizing her.  Very difficult to do.  I hope you have a strong DH, because he needs to now try to make up for all of the head-burying he has, I would imagine, been doing for years in reference to BM and her mind games.  Let me guess. . .   He doesn’t want to be put in the middle?  He needs to be in the middle.  Not you.  He needs to be in the middle of the fallout from his own divorce, because it was his divorce, his child, his ex-, and not yours.

Slavamom11's picture

Thank you for being very honest. I do understand that my husband and his ex need to be the ones communicating. Having a child of my own from a previous relationship, I know how important that is, but I believe you are right about him letting her call the shots for too long. When he finally put his foot down, things began to get ugly. I am just really hurting for step-daughter right now. We are the only two girls in the home and we share a lot of things. She has told me it would be easier if she could just hate me too. I just want to make her feel better.