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This is exhausting

TrueNorth77's picture

This is long, bear with me: SS15 is just constant drama lately. Today, he came home from school and said he was leaving right away to go to the girls soccer game. Cool, go do something other than play video games! But, lately when either skid leaves, they don't tell me who they're going with, then I have to drag it out of them. DH is sleeping for work at this time and while I encourage them to go do things (for the love of all things holy, GO DO THINGS), I do think we should know who they're with, and I'm the adult around so they need to tell me. DH agrees 100% and told them 2 weeks ago that they need to let me/us know who they are with. 
SS tries to walk out the door with just a "see ya", but I ask who he's going with- this kid will not willingly walk anywhere, so I know he has a ride. He says "I'm meeting friends there". I said, but you're not walking right, so who is driving you? He said "oh my ride is outside". *fool* Ok, he is obviously being evasive. I said, SS, WHO is driving you? He said "oh my auntie". "Auntie" as in, Crazy's twin sister. I just said ok, but all of a sudden things made sense. Last time SS was with us he told me a "friend" was picking him up a block away at the grade school and driving him 5 blocks to work, which immediately made me suspicious. It was his "auntie" (it drives DH and I nuts when Skids call her that). So he basically lied to me. Also come to find out that the "friend" who has been giving him rides home from school every day this entire year is his "auntie", and neither of us knew it. He had told me it was a guy friend at the beginning of the year. I personally am not thrilled by her giving him rides- I don't know her, but DH has told me she's nuts too. She said really awful things about DH during his and Crazy's divorce, accused him of domestic violence and worse (all definitely not true) so Crazy could get custody, and also lied about her own ex to get custody of her daughter. DH has a little trauma about it all because it was really awful. I'm personally more pissed that SS has been lying. Again. 
 

DH got up for work and SS wasn't home yet- I told him that He was at a game and "auntie" had given him a ride, but that he was evasive telling me. He was PISSED and said, yes he was being evasive because he knows better- and it's nice out, he doesn't need a ride to the school from her, he can walk. He immediately text skids that under no circumstances is their aunt or Crazy to be giving them rides on our time without DH's permission. And that they HAVE to tell us who they are going with- that is non-negotiable. 15 mins later I see SS walking up- suspicious because he obviously had been dropped off away from our house. DH asked him how he got home, and he says "Auntie". OMG. 15 mins after DH text him he couldn't get rides from her, he does it anyway. DH said, are you kidding me?? SS said he "doesn't see what the issue is, if he has someone to Give him a ride he should be able to do it". DH kind of lost his mind and told him he has no idea what happened years ago, and DH doesn't trust her and it undermines his authority- there are times we both think it would be good for SS to walk, our town is small and walkable! But her giving him rides takes that out of DH's hands and enables SS to be lazy, which is exactly what Crazy wants. She is absolutely behind having her sister give him rides, so she's manipulating our parenting style. She just hates when skids have to walk even a block. So DH laid into SS for getting rides from her for the whole year and knowingly deceiving us, although not enough emphasis was put on the lying IMO- he was just upset he was getting rides from her period.

Then DH asked SS about the drama at his work (SS's coworker who has been saying SS is lazy at work, and SS of course had a crappy attitude and said he's just not going to talk to anyone at work anymore and will just quit and find a new job), and DH is so over hearing about it, plus the poor-me attitude that DH has repeatedly told SS he doesn't want to hear, that DH just ripped into SS. I walked away because it was intense, but SS just doesn't get it and next week Will have ignored all of our good advice on how to handle the situation and go back to the negative attitude. SS actually said "I'm just negative", in a mopey voice. Which triggered DH to yell even more, because that's a cop out that allows him to make excuses without trying. DH eventually just told SS he knows SS won't listen because he hasn't so far, then left for work.
 

SS went to his room and I text a few minutes later asking if he ate, because I was making dinner when I got back from a walk. No response. I made chicken burgers (intending to put them away before SS came downstairs- you ignore me, I don't make you dinner), but forgot and he came down while they were still out and ate one. I said, are you ignoring my texts now? He said he "forgot" to respond. Sure. He's salty because I told DH he got a ride from "auntie". 

I am so over the nonsense with this kid. I know comparatively it isn't terrible, but it's constant and exhausting. And he's stressing DH out, which passes to me. After DH put screen time on SS's phone last time he was with us, SS text him from Crazy's at 12:30am on a school night asking if DH still had his phone locked down at 12:30am. DH told him, are you serious? I want to trust you, but here you are at 12:30am texting me when you should be sleeping, I don't care if your mom doesn't give you a bedtime, be responsible and go To sleep at a decent time! DH looked and somehow the screen time wasn't active- but do you think DH put it back on then, even as he was visibly annoyed with SS while telling me the story? Nope. SS had screen time for like 4 days, and that's it. True to my word, I didn't say a thing about it. DONE worrying about that, especially because DH doesn't enforce it even after all of this crap with SS lately.

1 month til he gets a license, 2yrs til graduation. Added a countdown timer on my phone. *biggrin*

Comments

stepmomnorth's picture

It certainly doesnt feel right that auntie is driving SS around town for so many reasons. Off the cuff, this doesn't sound bad. Read more into it and it looks a lot worse. There is a negative history with manipulation and trauma with her. SS is lying about it (probably because he knows its wrong.) Auntie should be running the pick up's by your partner first. She's going above everyone's head. She's intruding on you and your partners time and schedule with SS and it's impacting your lifestyle greatly. SS is being rude about it.

I'm glad your partner is mad and actively trying to work through this and I think he's going about it the right way but letting him know its not ok. I think its also good he didn't let SS use a cop out excuse.

Id do whatever it takes to shut down this auntie drive crap. You live in a small town. He can get rides from you or partner on your time or he can bike or walk. I'd make this abundantly clear. If he wants a ride from someone, give you a heads up.

This is affecting your lifestyle and I think youre doing the right things. It may also be a good time to have a talk with him about how lying and trust and responsibilities are all related. How lying creates distrust. How he's coming to an age where this is all so important. You need to be able to trust him, because if not it will take way his independence as he grows up, for example would you trust him with the responsibility of owning or driving a car? If he had a boss and was caught lying he would be fired. Etc. 

TrueNorth77's picture

I actually talked to him about lying maybe 6 wks ago? He had dented Crazy's car and lied fo DH about it saying she had done it. DH yelled at him, no consequences, I also talked to him separately and told him we do not lie in this house. And that I know all of the times he has lied (I do) even though I didn't say anything, but he is getting a clean slate that day- going forward we were starting fresh, no more lies. And here we are. DH told him last week that he needs to show he is trustworthy if he wants fo be able to drive his car when he gets his license next month. Now this. He's sneaky and I don't like sneaky, but there has not been 1 consequence for that yet. 

justmakingthebest's picture

Like you said, one more month and hopefully the pull that this "auntie" has on him will be cut since he can get around on his own. 

However, if he isn't listening to you or your DH about who is is allowed to go with and when and the rules about asking first- ground him. Take his phone. Tell your DH to BE A PARENT. 

TrueNorth77's picture

DH is all bark and no bite. Don't get me wrong, he's super intimidating when he's yelling at a skid, but there are never any consequences and never any follow through and it's all just words. We have argued about this so many times that I'm focusing all my effort Into disengaging when it comes to SS and consequences. It's hard though, SS knows there isn't consequences so just keeps doing what he wants. DH has mentioned it and has put a consequence into place if SS gets bad grades, but that's the only one he's mentioned he will actually follow. It's ridiculous.

Hastings's picture

Sounds like my DH and it drives me nuts! A talking to does absolutely nothing, yet DH can't be bothered to come up with or enforce real consequences.

TrueNorth77's picture

We just talked about this again now and how within the past few months things with SS have seemed to flip, with the bad attitude,  lying, and nonchalant attitude towards it all. DH said he definitely seems to be more dishonest. I told DH that at some point there needs to be consequences- he was all, "well, but, blah blah blah". I half-jokingly said he is all bark and no bite, and he said sometimes all you need is to be yelled at. I pointed out that in this case, the behavior just keeps happening again and again, so that's not working. He then said I want to be the hammer and "Napoleon". Yes DH, because I think you should give consequences after the same behavior happening 5+ times in a row, rather than spinning your wheels yelling, I'm Napoleon. That's his go-to when I suggest consequences- I'm the "police" and "not everything requires consequences". (I.e., nothing requires consequences). We knew we were getting close to an argument so we stopped the conversation, but I need to practice further disengaging from this SS situation because it's nothing but frustration and DH will not give consequences, so it will just keep repeating.  

Hastings's picture

Your DH and mine could be twins. He calls me the [insert word here] police all the time. And he hates the word "consequences." Well, tough. Life is nothing but consequences. Your SS (and mine) can't be shielded forever and the longer he is, the harder the world could smack him in the head.

Tried out's picture

likes the word "prison" better than "consequences."

TrueNorth77's picture

Lol

Cover1W's picture

I was called "authortarian" and "iron fisted" and "inflexible" and all sorts of things I'm actually not. Then at one point he said I wasn't the parent and the argument stopped right there. "OH, OK then, I'm not the parent. You got it." And that was my last big bowing out from the last remnants of engagement about 3 years ago.

TrueNorth77's picture

That must be some sort of divorced dad defense mechanism to get out of enforcing consequences- a bit of gaslighting and turning us into the ultra-strict SM's to make them seem less like wusses. 

dragonfly878's picture

My DH is the exact same way... I think it's fear that SKID won't want to come around if someone actually acts like a parent. 

stepmomnorth's picture

The book Stepmonster illustrates this perfectly. The book is so well written. My partner even read and commented, wow yes that was how and why i acted that way and he couldn't believe it. It was an eye opener for him. It explained it perfectly, to a T!! 

stepmomnorth's picture

Oh yes, it covers everything. I very highly recommend. It really does cover everything, dynamics of the step family, how and why things tend to typically happen a certain way, I just read through the whole thing nodding yes to everything, I feel like either I could have wrote it myself or it just summarized and examined everything in a way that really makes you see things clearly. I wouldnt necessarily say that it tought me how to address handling these things, rather perfectly summarize a lot of things that happen in step parent land. A real eye opener!