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A week before the family vacay and things are a mess (long)

SMto2's picture
  • I honestly don't know where to start. The annual "family vacation" is scheduled to take place for the first time at our new lake house next week. (Those who recall my story know this is in lieu of the $12k/week beach house we usually rent.) I thought that would make things easier on us, but now I see not. SS27, SDIL and SGDs came last weekend for Father's Day and stayed the night for the first time and I got a glimpse of what it will be like.  Pretty much what it was at the beach house, with DH and I doing all the cooking, serving and cleaning up every meal. I even asked DS13 to bring SGDs' plates to the sink so I could put them in the dishwasher, Another issue was,  instead of swimming off our dock (which is in a cove, so it's like a large swimming pool) SGDs decided they wanted to go to the man-made beach at our lake, so DH packed a cooler, snacks and loaded up chairs to sit in (basically the things we hoped to avoid by not renting a beach house this year, since we have plenty new chairs on our dock.) At the end of the weekend, in addition to washing their sheets (which I expect to do for all guests) I had to wash the gazillion beach towels they dirtied, as they are continually getting a new one. There also was the usual throwing away countless almost full 16 oz. bottles of soda and water where SGDs take a couple drinks and walk away, leaving it where it sits to be poured out, along with pouring out tons of milk where SS27 fills their cereal bowls to the brim and it's left on the counter all day. I'm used to going through a gallon of milk a day when they're there, most of which is poured out, and that's the least of my worries. 
  • Since last weekend, I've been dreading the family vacay and getting bitter and resentful about my plan to just stay a day or two and go back to work, since I could really use the break, when the only reason I was doing that was to avoid being a servant all week on MY vacation.
  • This evening, DH and I were discussing soda needs for the vacation, and DS13 asked if we could buy a different soda besides his favorite soda so it wouldn't all get opened with a drink or two taken and then get poured out and wasted, referring to the fact SS27 and SDIL give SGDs unopened 16 oz bottles of soda multiple times a day, and they take a few sips and leave it.  (This is just one example of so, so much food and drink wasted by SGDs and left wherever.)  I commented to DS13 that, when he has his own kids, he can stop them from doing that, and I'll tell them as well. I'm sure I repeated this to DS13 several times, while DH said nothing.
  • After that, DH was acting pissy and later ended up telling me he didn't appreciate my comment or my tone and claimed the only reason DS13 said that about SGDs was because he heard ME say it before (not because he saw countless bottles of his favorite soda poured down the drain to the point we had no more.) DH and I ended up getting in an argument about it, and I told him it's better then if I'm never around SS27 and family, so I won't know what they're doing to be bothered about it. (We had another issue from Father's Day where SDIL sprayed sunscreen on SGDs INSIDE OUR HOUSE, one time which caused a large section of oily film on the tile just inside the door, that everyone then tracked through into the house, and again in the living room, where she sprayed it on one SGD's leg and a greasy film got all over our coffee table and then on other SGD's leg, which was on the arm of a brand new upholstered chair.) I had told DH already we need to ask them to spray it OUTSIDE. (I may just stop buying the spray altogether, since SS27 never brings any of his own and just uses ours.) 
  • Anyway, I ended up telling DH I'm just not going on the family vacay at all. He can go and wait on all of them hand and foot, and I'll just work. He said fine, if that's what I want to do, and looked all sad and pitiful like he does every time this is discussed and said he's sorry and wishes it were different but it's not.
  • I'm sad and angry that I'm not going to get to vacation with DH and my boys this year. I may be able to take off a few days later in the summer, but DH won't be able to take anymore time, so it will all go to SS27 and family. I feel very helpless. I guess I'm looking for validation that not going at all is the right thing to do, since it means I'm the one alienated from my family. Thanks for reading, and sorry so long.


bananaseedo's picture

You have suffered long enough with this disaster. I would not go, send your kids together with him too, kick back and pamper yourself.  Not sure how far away it is, but maybe come by one afternoon, play in the lake and leave all your messes for your DH and his family to handle.  THen go again with your own boys to the lake house, leave clueless DH to his work. I rather vacation alone with my sons and in peace then with his ungrateful lazy family, I wouldn't miss my DH all that much if that's how he acted anyways.

He says he wishes it were different but is incapable of writing a house rules list for his ADULT son and family?  Nope. Don't torture yourself.  

Tried out's picture

She should NOT send her bios unless she wants them to become the skivvies in her place. OP and her kids can go off and have a wonderful, fun vacation by themselves. It's too bad dad won't be part of it, but this is his choice. Maybe being alone with his own kids is just what he needs to finally get sick of it.

JRI's picture

I feel bad for you.  I know you hoped buying the lake house would resolve all the issues you had last year.

I wouldn't go, either.  It's a bummer that you and DH can't have the time you planned.  I would not lift one finger to prepare for DH's outing.   He is going to have a lot of planning, shopping and toting and it sounds like he is already working full time.  Too bad.  Then when he gets there, there will be meal prep, dishes, trash, packing up, etc.  So sad, boo hoo.  Im guessing he will come back frazzled but lets say he comes back glowingly happy.  Good for him (except I think he will be lying).  Just rest this weekend, it's not what you wanted but at least you won't be waiting on these messy, thoughtless people and DH will get the unfiltered picture when you aren't there and he has to handle it all.

Aunt Agatha's picture

That's the problem.  Beach, mountainside, lake house, where ever.  It's 100% your DH and his feral ungrateful lazy kids.

As with me, it sounds like you've hit a turning point.  Stay far away from your DHs children. You will be much happier away from them all with just you and your DS.  He sounds like a good kid who doesn't need that either.

Wicked stepmo.'s picture

I wouldn't go either. Let DH pout, you already know you will just be aggravated and not be able to enjoy yourself. So there would be no point. 

I would save your time off and take bios when you will be able to relax without SKs and SGKs there.

Winterglow's picture

So, if you have so little actual holiday time and the little you have is spent with the adult skids and their families, does that mean that you and your husband never get to go on holiday and make memories with just your (joint) bios? 

Oh, and I'm with the others, go somewhere nice with your bios and let your DuH spend the time with his ignorant, selfish kids.

thinkthrice's picture

All his vacation time with his grown brood from hell,  just wait until he's all out of time then you and DS go up to the beach house with possibly some of DS's WELL MANNERED friends and possibly their moms instead.   Just view it as separate vacations... maybe he will get the hint... Maybe.

Leaving almost full containers of beverages and excessive waste must be a skid thing.  I was brought up never to waste and I brought up my BIOS the same way.  Chef's ferals would constantly waste when they would come over and also leave the almost full bottles of open beverages.

SMto2's picture

Thank you all for your comments and support! I'm also still fuming and angry about the fact that SS27 posted nothing on social media about DH for Father's Day, yet for Mother's Day last month, SS27 made multiple posts with multiple pics each about BM, one of which referred to BM as one of the greatest humans to ever walk the earth or some such thing. However, SS27 again had the nerve to copy one of the pics I posted of him with SGDs on Father's Day and make it his profile pic. (Yes, I'm angry at myself for breaking my word I wouldn't post their pics on FB again, but in the moment, I wanted to share pics of my DH's Father's Day with my friends.) I told DH during our argument last night that SS27 wants the world to believe he has no contact with DH, while we're spending our money and precious time on him and his. DH said again he knows it's not good, but he wants whatever little bit of relationship he can have. It's all a broken record. This is Year three I've been on here complaining about this situation, and I need to finally accept the only thing that can be done is me changing my own actions. I'm trying to do that. I'm pissed that to do that, I have to miss the fireworks and biggest party at the lake of the year with all our new neighbors. 

AgedOut's picture

Do your kids even want to go to this family disaster? if not, why should they go be unpaid and unappreciated labor for someone else's good times? 

I hope you keep your word and don't go. If your husband brings it up (& he will), ask him what good things happen for you when you go too. Does he think you have fun being the housekeeper, maid, cook, pack mule, planner and clean up crew? Does he think you would want to watch the things you worked hard for being treated with disregard? What part of his children's free vacation does he see you enjoying? Then you keep your word, stay home, work, ask your kids if they want to be a part of his mess, and then take that $$ and time and enjoy your time with your kids later on. Of course your husband is unhappy. He will have to do all those things for his own kids and face their rude, wasteful, disgusting, selfcentered, disrespecting actions. Sucks to be him.

grannyd's picture

Hey, SMto2,

Having my bios treated like skivvies to your DH’s rude, entitled older children would infuriate me! GRRRRR!

My stepchildren also wasted pop, leaving nearly full cans parked around the house to be thrown out after the beverage had gone flat. At my insistence, we stopped buying cans and, instead, used quart bottles. The kids would pour out a few ounces into plastic glasses and, although there were complaints, there was much less waste.

I’m slightly OCD so greasy anything on my furniture and walls would be completely unacceptable. Are the steps so thin-skinned that they can’t be told to use your sunscreen outdoors? Sparing your new place from unnecessary damage seems like a very reasonable request.

Yup, Hon, 3 years is plenty long enough to object to this annual fiasco. Being deprived of a decent holiday, particularly during a year that promised fireworks and partying with new neighbors, is just plain wrong!

FinallySkidFree's picture

I agree with the others. DO NOT GO on this hellcation. Let DH cater to his obnoxious clan hand and foot. You should pack your Bio's and go elsewhere. He will most likely learn a HUGE lesson on this trip that is about time he learned.

shellpell's picture

I agree with all the others, I've followed your story and it's time for the nuclear option. Infuriating!

ndc's picture

You're right - the only thing you can change here is what YOU do.  I think you're doing the right thing by skipping this debacle.  Let your DH deal with his ungrateful, unhelpful kids.  If you want to do the 4th of July festivities with the neighbors, go up for the day, and do not do anything for the SS or his family.  Have your fun and leave.  Let DH know that you expect the house to be spotless when the vacation is over.  I think once he has to do it all himself, and realizes he's not going to ever get a vacation with you if he uses all his time in his kids, he may change his tune.  If not, at least you know where you stand. 

Winterglow's picture

Ooooh, I hope your mother is like mine was - the lady took no prisoners lol. She would have had no problem asking your SS if he had special needs that stopped him from getting his bum out of his chair and putting his dishes in the dishwasher, Or telling a SGK that no decent person just takes a sip and then throws a soda away (and this within their parents earshot). And that would just be for starters!

Tried out's picture

never seemed like the solution OP maintained it would be in prior posts. Different location, same behavior.

It bugs the hell out of me that OP and her husband's joint bios are continually pressed into service of the Holy Offsprings. I just don't understand why she would do this. It's.Not.Fair. It's the Cinderella story all over again, only this time it's the mother and not the SM who is mistreating Cinderella.



SMto2's picture

I knew having the lake house vs. the beach house would not solve the biggest problem of the SKs' messy, lazy, entitled behavior. However, there were and are several advantages to the lake house that make it worth it. A major advantage is that the amount we were spending to rent a beachfront home with private pool for one WEEK a year ($10k -13k) covers more than HALF A YEAR's worth of payments on the lake house in a community where most houses sell within a day or two of being listed, so it was an excellent investment. A smaller advantage is that we already have all condiments & other supplies on hand (ketchup, mustard, Mayo, dishwashing liquid, trash bags, toilet paper, paper towels, etc.) so we don't have to purchase everything all new at a premium upon arrival in a resort town and then leave/throw away what's left (due to no room to transport it home) like we did at the beach house.

I "thought" we wouldn't have the daily struggle of someone having to carry down and set up beach chairs and umbrellas for the large group every morning and bringing them all up like we did at the beach, due to having chairs and umbrellas already set up on our dock, but then the SGDs wanted to go to the man-made beach at our lake, where you have to bring your own chairs and everything, plus there's very little shade. I've decided "I" won't be going there again. (We are saving the around $500 a week it cost us to rent beach chairs and umbrellas for the group.) Perhaps the biggest plus of the vacation at the lake is that it's an hour and 15 minutes from my office (vs. the 8-10 hour drive to the beach we went to) so it's easy to go for a short time and leave. (And of course, we can easily go there most weekends.) Although there obviously are still major problems with the family vacation, having it at the lake has definite advantages so far, so that makes me feel a little better about the situation. 

hereiam's picture

 He said fine, if that's what I want to do, and looked all sad and pitiful like he does every time this is discussed and said he's sorry and wishes it were different but it's not

Sure, he wishes it were different but he's not willing to do anything about it. He expects YOU to make all of the sacrifices so that he can have this superficial relationship with his ungrateful kid, while SS and his family disrespect you. And, he knows that you will do it, that's why he does the sad, pitiful thing, it's always worked in the past.

I think you need to follow through this year and not go. Do something for you.

DH said again he knows it's not good, but he wants whatever little bit of relationship he can have.

Again, at the expense of you and your bios, the people that do love him and are there for him in everyday life, not just for the vacations. Pathetic.



justmakingthebest's picture

I don't blame you for a moment. I haven't dealt with half the crap you deal with and I have already told DH that if he wants to take SS out of town, I will not be joining!

Maybe this trip will be what your husband needs to experience- Him doing it all, seeing the ungratefulness of his adult kid and family, and feeling the loneliness of doing something without vs. having you with him when all he had to do was show you a little support. 

ESMOD's picture

I think it's time for you to put your foot down with your DH about his "family vacation".. from this point forward, he does not get to use up all his vacation on his adult children's trip.  He is free to have them to the lake for a long weekend... (without you).. but then he will reserve enough time for you and he to have your own vacation another time during the summer.. without the other ADULT kids.  

I'm not a huge fan of excluding children from "family vacations".. unless there are some pretty compelling reasons.. even if that means skids get one with mom and one with dad etc.. even if they aren't plums to be around all the time.. young minor children really should be included in their parent's family events when possible.  Older teens.. and adults? not really.

halo1998's picture

I would book a vacation for you and your Bios to somewhere  you have wanted to go to during the "family vacation" time.  When you Duh is asking about it tell him..your taking a vacation with "your" family.  He is taking a vacation with "his" family.  Problem solved.

No waiting on the freeloaders

CLove's picture

Is there a way you can swoop in for the day, however? And sit back and relax?

It sounds like your DH knows exactly what is going on. He doesnt need any hints, he needs to get frustrated and upset enough to do something about it all. Right now, its easy for him to not have to risk saying anything, because you are taking up all the labor to make things nice for everyone.

You can try saying something to the SDIL about the spraying inside...although this stuff should be obvious, some folks dont think about it. Then since you arent the one trying to manufacture a surface relationship, you can be the bad guy!

But I would stay away and create some great memories with your bios and friends, if its not possible to go up for the day.

These things do not get better over time as you have seen.

SMto2's picture

Yes, fortunately, it's only an hour and 15 minutes from my office, so I can go there for a day and have fun then leave with no problem. Lol.

TheAccidentalSM's picture

He sorted this before. It would allow you to go to the lake without being a scivy 

SMto2's picture

I don't know about a "maid." Lol. We do have an awesome gal who cleans for us at the lake, and she will be coming as soon as the week is over! 

SMto2's picture

Thank you again for all the comments. I'm thinking and taking them to heart.I'm now inclined to go for the fireworks so I don't miss the fun at the lake, and then leaving afterwards so I don't get roped in to helping. It's so not fair to me to miss out. DH and I may try to find a long weekend to go to the lake later before the season ends, but otherwise, we truly are crazy busy at work with the legal world opening up and no time to take off. DH has now said HE'S returning to work on Thursday of the family vacation week, so he's shortening their week. He also said next year, he's shortening it to a long weekend. I know my DH loves me and is struggling to deal with the situation in a way that balances the relationship with the SKs while not putting me out too much. No, he's not willing to tell them it's our way or the highway, but I understand that. He HAS agreed to tell them NOT to spray sunscreen in the house, which is a start. Thank you for allowing me to vent and for validating my feelings. 

Kaylee's picture

It never ceases to amaze me how disgusting, lazy and slob like some people are. 

I was discussing this very subject with my mum the other day: lazy freeloaders who bring their poorly behaved offspring and leach off others, never lifting a finger or contributing financially.

Mum said, quite rightly, it's their upbringing. Lol.

She told a story of taking us kids away on holiday when we were young - Dad couldnt go due to work. On the drive back home, she stopped at a cafe so we could have lunch. As she walked in with the 5 of us kids, she saw the cafe owner look wary, obviously thinking oh I don't want all these kids in my establishment, trashing the place.

She did serve us, and we all behaved very well. As we were leaving she said to Mum, I would like to congratulate you on how polite and well behaved your children are! (we had taken our cups and plates up to the counter after we finished, lol).

Mum said to herm, well they have been brought up to behave that way!!

SMto2's picture

It sounds like you have been blessed with a wonderful mum who was/is an excellent parent. I also can't understand people who behave that way. FWIW, we've had many weekends of guests at the lake already, and other than DH's youngest sister (another story) the SKs were the only ones who did nothing but sit around and expect to be waited on.