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Update: DH TOLD me to disengage

TrueNorth77's picture

I posted yesterday about how SD14 told Crazy that I send messages on the OFW app while DH is sleeping, which is absolutely not true. After everything I do for her and the crap she has been pulling, this was the last straw. I'm done, and decided to disengage fully this time 

DH and I just had a convo about it all, and he very adamantly told me he wants me to completely back off from her- not to cook for her, offer to help her with things, chat her up, or even say hi to her. He said, do nothing for her!! He thinks she is manipulating me and she needs to learn what it's like to have a disengaged Truenorth. He doesn't know the term disengage, but it was interesting that he was describing just that since we all talk about it so much here. He kept saying, I mean it, do NOT CAVE and start doing nice things for her! I was thinking, has DH been lurking in the comments on StepTalk...? He could totally be a commenter here. Lol. I promised I wouldn't because now I know what is really happening and how she is telling Crazy what I say and even things I don't, and I'm over it. And I feel silly for trying so hard when she has clearly been playing me. I have nothing to say to her, good or bad. It's sad because I know this isn't necessarily her fault because of PAS, but we also can't change it no matter how we try and being nice and talking to her just seems to be impacting me and DH for the worse, while SD is becoming downright defiant and shitty. 

DH also said he's already made the decision and is 99% sure that SD is not coming to Italy. He wants nothing to do with a pouty kid with a bad attitude ruining the trip and telling us how much better her mom is when she doesn't even want to be there (his words) . Which is a relief, although now we need to decide if we only take SS17, or just go ourselves. To DH's point, it does make a statement that the relationship has changed if we take SS but not SD. I said, well she needs to learn that she won't be rewarded for extremely poor behavior. It's not about making a statement, it's consequences. He thinks it will just further validate Crazy's "your dad and SM don't care about you" narrative to SD. Probably, but there's no winning at this point. I would feel bad if we don't take SS since we told him we were taking him and i think he was looking forward to it...and if he doesn't go it's fully because of SD, which sucks. Either way, I'm just glad we don't have to take an entitled, bratty girl who would ruin the trip anyway.



JRI's picture

I disengaged from SD61, too, after some unforgivable acts.  I'm pleasant and civil for DH's sake, but that's it.  It's a relief not to try anymore.  She seems a little confused cuz I did so much in the past but it might be a relief to her, too.

Rags's picture

her as soon as she walks in.  Have her to everything that needs to be done. Cooking, cleaning, laundry, etc.... 

Work that toxic lying POS Spawn's ass off from the moment she sets foot in your home until she leaves.

When she starts crying about it, point out her lies and introduce her to the relationship between choices and consequences.

Have fun!!!


TheAccidentalSM's picture

Definitely disengage.

But don't stop cooking for her if you are preparing a meal for the rest of the family.  Not extras but don't exclude her from family meals.

TrueNorth77's picture

This is actually helpful, I am struggling how to navigate this. I couldn't imagine just saying she can't eat what I cooked for everyone else, but I also sometimes make things for her just to be nice. That part is done!

ESMOD's picture

First.. I'm glad he is on the same page with you re the disengagement plan..

Second.. MY vote is to just take this trip without either kid... just go yourselves and have a marvelous bonding adult time.  If you don't feel comfortable with SS being at your place alone.. he can stay with his mom for the duration.. or grands.. etc..

AgedOut's picture

I agree with him. If it's a family activity, go along or if it's a family meal cook the meal but don't put the spotlight on her in any way. No special snacks, no laundry, no ride (big one), no sharing what you have, no bailing her out when she forgets or destroys something, no back to school shopping, no nothing. But continue to goof w/ your DH and SS, be yourself w/ them and give her the cold stare that goes right through her. 

TrueNorth77's picture

This is exactly my plan, and mostly because it's how I feel. I finally Just feel beat down. Like all of my efforts were for nothing and I'm just the focus of shit talking for Crazy and SD. I have no more to give her, so that's what she's getting. 

Cover1W's picture

This is really great and he's right. Don't reward people for bad behavior. Even if they are rewarded for it by others.

justmakingthebest's picture

I love that he his give you the reassurance that this is the right thing for your peace. He is standing up and protecting you and I love that! 

TrueNorth77's picture

We have disagreed SO much about skids. I didn't see him taking this approach. It's amazing feeling Like I don't have to put on an act just to keep the peace. I can be cordial and decent with no expectations to do more. I didn't want this situation at all, but at least his response is ideal to make it as tolerable as possible.

notarelative's picture

Not taking SD on the trip would be my hill to die on. If you lie about me to the GAL, who else will you lie to -- Italian police, TSA, customs...? If DH decided to take her, I'd stay home.

I'd take SS if he wants to go. He already knows about the trip. He should not be punished for his sibling's actions. My feeling is that he'd be a good traveling companion. I took my youngest to Italy at this age (just me and him) for a week. It was a great week. 

TrueNorth77's picture

This is what I'm leaning towards also. No SD, but SS shouldn't be punished. If we don't take him to Italy DH wants to take him somewhere, but still, it's not the original plan. No SD is ideal. She is always a fun sponge anyway, but with her newfound defiance and indifference to us, plus the lies, she doesn't need to ruin our trip.

Harry's picture

Do not take SK to Italy.  Enjoy yourself kid free.  There has to be consequences for actions,  They want to be disengage from the famiky then no family vacation 

Survivingstephell's picture

We ended up splitting the cooking, when skids were over DH cooked.  I got tired of the complaints and DH didnt really nip it in the bud so that was my line.  Even when YSD 23 comes over for dinner still , he cooks most of it if not all.  I'll clean up as that gets me away from the table.  

TrueNorth77's picture

I think this should be the agreement in our house as well, however....DH just wouldn't cook at all. He MIGHT make chicken tenders or tator tots (he will literally just make tator tots for dinner for himself) and then offer it up to SD also. They are old enough to fend for themselves and there are a ton of nights I don't cook, but sometimes I like to make an actual meal for DH or skids.In the past I have geared my meals towards what SD will like, because she doesn't like spicy, etc, so there are meals DH, myself, and SS would like, but SD wouldn't, so I don't make them. That will change. Too spicy for her? She can make something else, but I'm not going to cater my cooking to her like I have previously. 

Survivingstephell's picture

You do have to mentally walk away from it when you delegate  it to DH.  Stock up on the fish sticks, fries and Mac and cheese.  The freedom is worth it.   I'm lucky that DH can cook, he does need help figuring out what to make but he had some favorites he cooked often.  Taking away another thing the skids could complain about was me winning.  And lord knows we need every win we can get!  If you eat healthy have some meals available for yourself.  Freeze them , do the power bowl thing, don't sacrifice your health. 

Cover1W's picture

I do most of the cooking when it's just DH and I. When YSD17 is with us, HE must do the cooking. She turned vegan this past year (don't get me started on that one) and now mealtime is alllllll about her. And she does none of the cooking unless we are not there for dinner for some reason. When DH told me her decision I told him point blank that it's all up to him now. I won't shop special for her wants and won't cook for all of us unless it's something I want to make (which I've done a couple times). And if I want something specific that she won't eat (I've had to increase my beef intake due to super low iron levels) I will let him know 24 hours in advance so he can deal with it.

She's not once cooked a vegan meal for us since she's changed to that diet. She not once has been required to go INTO the store with him (she'll sit in the car waiting for him). She's not once been required to go to the store HERSELF - you know, by car - to get things she needs.

Nope, I don't give two sh*ts.

She'll be here this weekend after at three week hiatus with BM. Tonight I'm taking myself out to dinner alone so DH can have "catch up time" with her. Then tomorrow is DH's birthday. He wants to go out to a specific restaurant and said, "But YSD probably won't like that idea." Me, "DH it's YOUR birthday. There's options for vegans at that place. Too bad for her if she doesn't like it!" He agreed and I made the reservations anway. It's like a combination of he's happy she's coming and dread that he has to deal with her. Like this is why I disengaed, because it's nuts.

DH is not the best cook. He has about 3 staples he rotates through. I just make sure I have enough veg or have time to make somehting for myself if he's cooking something I think is marginal or nothing I really want to eat. He's also very heavy on the carbs so adding those greens is super important for me.

Rags's picture

what is cooked for appreciative guests/people. Assholes, get what they get.

I have been back and forth with my own mother for decades on what I can and cannot eat

.  I am a T-1 diabetic.  I am also highly insulin resistant. I cannot eat high Carb (CHO) foods.  She is old school and a balanced diet  to her is Carb heavy.  

My SIL and my nephew's wife claim to be Vegan/Vegitatian. Not a medical requirement.  

My mom will spend days preparing foods for my SIL and Niece IL.   And fight with me tooth and nail that "it is only a little bit" when she is preparing meals for the family with no CHO free options. So, I pick around, and then show mom my CGM BG gaph when my insulin pump starts screaming in the middle of dinner.

My mom cares and wants to serve amazing feasts. It is her love language. She just ignores my disease.  I think it is denial for her.

I will not prepare special meals for people following whatever food trend of the moment is in vogue, or who is just picky.  I will make side dishes that they can eat, but I will not prepare a comprehensive menu for what is a choice and not a medical necessity.  When they visit, she does her kitchen magic... As they drive away, I toss the baked goods, flour, sugar, pasta, etc... in the garbage. It breaks my heart. My mom is amazing and I love her beyond measure. I just cannot eat her cooking.  Though it is truly culinary magic.

But... that may just be me.