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Disengaging etc

helen17's picture

After a nights thinking about all yr comments, I need to make a plan. I need to disengage because living with 15SS full time is making me miserable and I don't want to be a moody mum to my own kids when they are doing nothing wrong.
How do I disengage as I've tried saying I'll keep out of it before then I get sucked back in and end up getting annoyed at all their stupid plans and decisions. I've also tried not doing his washing/ironing/cooking his meals etc and then I feel guilty and partner and MIL think this is terrible that I do it for my own kids and not SS.
How do I word it so that I don't sound like I'm being as immature as the boy?
I really want the manipulation of his dad to stop regarding SS getting his own way all the time.
I want SS to realise this is also MY house-that I pay the bills, paid a lump sum off the mortgage etc.
I think SS should stick to visitation plans and if he can't do this I think he should consider living with BM.
I think my partner should start making this family a priority and if SS wants to be part of it, he sticks to our rules.
Is that unreasonable?


Kes's picture

Most of the things that you list that you want - these are not things that can be fixed by disengaging. Disengaging is about for the most part, ceasing to have any input into your SKIDS parenting. There is info at
It involves leaving the boy's bio parents to do ALL the parenting, and turning a blind eye to anything that bugs you from now on eg SS to acknowledge that it is your house too, stick to visitation plans and the house rules.
You may have to consider your bottom line regarding your partner - eg consider leaving the relationship unless he does the things you mention above such as stop allowing his son to manipulate him, make the family a priority. You can't FORCE your partner to do these things, only ask him to, and tell him what the consequences will be if he doesn't.

alwaysanxious's picture

IT sounds like it worked for you, DH responded. That is the point. Most of us remain disengaged because DH or Skids aren't making changes and stepping up.

alwaysanxious's picture

The guilt is something you have to get over for yourself. MIL and DH of course are going to use tactics to get you to keep doing for the skids.

I didn't tell SO ahead of time. I just stopped little by little. The dishes sat, then I didn't do their laundry, then I stopped cooking. When they asked me for something, I sent them to their dad. I don't ask about their schooling or personal life at moms house. Its just not reciprocated. If you have no interest in me, I lose interest in you. You just have to work on not letting them suck you back in.

"I don't know dear, what do you think?" "I'm sorry to hear that" Any responses to issues should be empathic. You understand. Then stop. Or you redirect back to DH (what do you think dear)

I'm guessing your SS is disrespectful to you and dad isn't being fair and implementing rules for SS, just your kids?

All you can do is focus on your kids then. You will always hate watching someone manipulate or take advantage of your DH. Disengaging isn't going to turn that off. It will make your feeling a little less strong after some time. I have difficulty with it too, but its your DH that is the problem because he is allowing SS to treat him this way.