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Update on my horrible adult stepkids

Nursejulee's picture

Well, I did not attend younger stepdaughter graduation because I was never invited but my husband did go and watched her get her diploma. He was so happy for her and she extended her hand to give him a handshake. My oldest stepdaughter went to the aquarium with my husband and her young kids. She took a few pics but not one was posted on Instagram even though she posted tons with her stepfather. I have not talked to them in a couple of weeks and I will admit I feel a loss but also peace. I do know one day I will have to talk to them and I’m planning to tell them that I don’t want to be in their life. I’m done with toxic people. I have told my husband he can see his kids as much as he wants and I will be supportive but I don’t want them in my house. I also said I will encourage you as long as you don’t push me to have a relationship. I’m just done. I feel so detached from them and I’m surprisingly ok with it. I have decided I’m not going to let anyone talk to me the way they do and I refuse to be treated like that. Period. 

Rags's picture

Congratulations on finding your boundaries and holding the Skids accountable for speaking to you appropriately.

A handshake from a kid is insulting IMHO.  DH needs to give his girls clarity that he is their father and not some random male semirelative.

Nursejulee's picture

I was completely shocked when he told me that. It just showed her true character. It was a 6 hour drive for him to go to this event. 

Kes's picture

Well done.   I didn't go to my SD24's graduation either, and it didn't put me up nor down - mind you I have been disengaged for 16 yrs!    You sound like you have a good sense of yourself and your own boundaries - keep firm hold on that.  

sandye21's picture

So glad to hear you have placed boundaries for the skids and DH.  I did the same thing with SD 8 1/2 years ago and it gets better every year that passes by.  You won't be sorry.  Don't know if you have to tell them that you don't want to be in their life but you know the situation better than I do.  I DID let SD know that I knew she didn't like me and said I didn't like her so that ended the game.  Just know --- it's not you.  Hang in there.  You deserve to be respected and comfortable in your own home.  Good luck.

Nursejulee's picture

It’s the weirdest thing. None of us (them or me) have not spoken a word but when they do eventually text, I will stand my ground. 

shamds's picture

Graduation despite the only parent giving her monthly allowance so she didn’t have to stress getting a job to survive. People on basic salary got less than her and she had a scholarship on top of that and was getting over $2000 a month for the whole time she studied her degree.

what did she do instead? She didn’t invite him from graduation but the weekend before on the usual weekend meet suggested she bring her graduation attire and they take pics at food court of shopping mall or shopping mall entrance because thats a normal thing to do and she did a laughing emoji like it was such a casual thing. hubby didn’t reply to that suggestion and ignored it was brought up. Tbh i know hubby was insulted sd didn’t invite him because you know bio mum being uncomfortable and its a priority to bring the man she is currently married to and cheated on whilst married to my husband before they were even getting a divorce. My husband said to me he was busy at work that day.

i know my husband and something important like a university graduation he would always prioritise just like his wife giving birth... he just felt insulted by sd 

that weekend she didn’t bring her graduation attire, I won’t go to any skid graduation, engagement or wedding nor will i force my minor kids to go so they can rub off on their mums family and friends how they’re related to Caucasian people so they appear upperclass 

where i come from you don’t pick when to be a glorified sister, sibling or family member for show

2Tired4Drama's picture

Congrats on disengaging!  If you give it some more time you will find it does get easier.  One suggestion I have is to STOP looking at the skids' social media sites.  All is does is fuel up your resentment and anger.  The less you know what the skids and gskids are up to, the better.  

I also agree with Sandy  - Don't even bother to tell them you don't want them in your life.  They would probably applaud and jump with joy if you did as it would be evidence that they were successful in their efforts to exclude you and/or treat you badly. 

When the rare occasion comes that you may have to see them, treat them like mere acquaintances - like a former coworker that you weren't particularly fond of.  Be cooly polite, and don't say ANYTHING personal.   Exit the room/situation as quickly and smoothly as possible.   Use whatever excuse you want to, just extricate yourself.  

Let your DH maintain his own relationship with them as long as it doesn't affect you.  However, I will add this... even though disengaging is the best option in cases like this, don't expect that you won't still have times when you feel anger and resentment.  I still do.  Disengagement is an active choice and it still takes practice to make it work.   

My SO is going alone to visit SD, who is pregnant with her first child - the first grandchild.  I will not be going.   In one sense, I feel some resentment because my SO didn't even ask if I wanted to go.  (I certainly wouldn't have, BTW, since I know I would not be welcome by SD.)  I know I would be excluded or kept on the fringes, which is typical for most of us SMs when babies are expected/born.  I figure why even set myself up for that?  No sense in getting attached to a cute baby only to get shoved to the side. 

Yet every single one of my family members and friends have welcomed my SO into their lives and treat him warmly and with affection. There is a great imbalance there - he has carte blanche to my life but I was always kept at arms-length when it comes to SD/SSIL/and now gskid.  

The best thing to do is keep in mind that if you didn't disengage, think of the nastiness and heartache you might be subjected to.  That's what I keep reminding myself.  

sandye21's picture

"-- even though disengaging is the best option in cases like this, don't expect that you won't still have times when you feel anger and resentment."

It was great to know that I would never have to deal with toxic SD again.  But after that, what are you left with?  Trying to resolve feelings of resentment of DH's lack of courage and support.  He is the same man you were married to before you disengaged.  So you have to disengage in a different way with him - and there are times when he does something that brings up all of the hurt from long ago.  This is when you tell yourself you are worthy of his loyalty and stand up for yourself as you never did with the Skids.  And this is somewhat easier when you are not grouped on by both DH and the skids. 

As the years go by you gain strength and self-confidence - and DHs learn to be a better husband.  I have had recent setbacks with DH but he knows to act accordingly now.  That I value myself enough that I will not put up with B.S.

I haven't seen SD in over 8 years, and think very little of her today.  When I recall her actions there is no anger, just a memory.

piegirl's picture

I am so relieved to know that I am not the only one who feels anger and resentment. 

Can I ask though, when you say "So you have to disengage in a different way with him - and there are times when he does something that brings up all of the hurt from long ago". do you mean that we have to disengage with DH's to successfully disengage from skids?

Just trying to learn how to get through this... 

sandye21's picture

"-- do you mean that we have to disengage with DH's to successfully disengage from skids?"  Sorry.  What I wrote was a bit confusing.  But -- yes.  If you disengage from the skids and have full support from your DH then there is no cause to disengage from him.  But in many cases, mine included, this is not the case,

Often, a SM will disengage from the skids but her DH keeps playing games, gaslighting, telling her to be the bigger person, etc., trying to make her confused so she will go back to 'Stephell' as usual.  This is when you disengage and stop buying into his game.  

When I disengaged from SD, I wanted no contact from her.  This meant that I had to also disengage from DH in different way since we were still living in the same house.  DH was welcome to visit with SD but it would have to be at a location other than our home.  I would not discuss SD with him.  If he brought her up I replied, "Hmm" and changed the subject.  DH would blurt out a remark to SD on the phone, "You won't be coming over for a while", or some misguided comment to me that hinted my disengagement was only temporary.  He needed to know it wasn't.  Disengaging from your DH in this way eases the process of fully disengaging from the skids.

When I disengaged from SD I did not disengage from our marriage, only from the part of it that pertained to SD.  I just did not waste any emotional energy on anything related to DH and his relationship with SD.  When he was upset that SD shunned him, or did not receive cards or gifts on special days I disengaged from the situation as much as possible and let him deal with it on his own.

hereiam's picture

I do know one day I will have to talk to them and I’m planning to tell them that I don’t want to be in their life.

Actually, you don't have to talk to them and you don't have to tell them anything. You don't want to be in their lives? You just don't be in their lives. No need for an announcement, they will just use that to turn the situation around on YOU.

You've made your husband aware of your boundaries and intentions, that's all that's necessary.

Nursejulee's picture

I just posted that I would say something but you are right!!! I don’t owe them anything. I encourage my dh to have a relationship with him but told him I will continue to encourage but don’t encourage me to. 

CLove's picture

Thats the last text I sent narcissistic selfish self serving vile sd20. Never contacted her since, and that was maybe about a year ago, when we were still texting each other.

Go with love. Just go. No announcement of disengagement, no big huge deal, just "go".

Detach from toxic.

shellpell's picture

You may already do this, but I find that filling up my life with yoga, regular workouts (maybe hiring a trainer), a book club, meditation practice, etc etc really keeps you from thinking about and ruminating about the situation. Not only hat, you feel so fulfilled you actually will stop caring. Best of luck.

shamds's picture

Not want a relationship with them or ever want to see them again. You just go dead silent and ghost them... they do not deserve the privilege of being treated to the respect of your time being polite and explaining the ABC’s of why you have disengaged.

Siemprematahari's picture

CONGRATULATIONS to your newfound peace & freedom! You will see the difference in how removing them from your life will make you feel lighter. You don't owe anyone ANYTHING not even an explanation so move forward and continue living your best life without them in it.


CANYOUHELP's picture

Congratulations, it takes a lot to arrive here, but it is a jouney many of us are forced to take.  Nonetheless, you are taking back emotional control of your life.  You are protecting yourself from people who are not there for you; people who only want to exclude you, most likely.

It is not perfect, but it is a much better place than before.  And, as the years pass, you begin to appreciate yourself even more for not going back into the snake pit. It takes a lot of courage to arrive here....but you did it.

No explanation needed, ever....

Booboobear's picture

Nursejulee, I saw your posts when my laptop was broken since June.  I'm glad its still up so I could try to let you know to hang in there, your doing good with the whole graduation thing.

 It must be such a fine balance for your SD to convey her lack of respect for her dad while at the same time, wanting him there so she can gloat in her glory.  It reminds me of my SD's juggling a conversation with me and DH where she answers him with upbeat and kind conversation and next breath stone cold hatred answers for my questions for her when we are having a dinner party....acting like she be a half mask like phantom of the opera. 

funny thing is OSD is having her second wedding.  

 (She specifically told DH that i was not invited to her wedding to the first guy-DH attended the destination wedding in Hawaii per my advice to go walk her down the isle)

 For this second wedding, neither DH or I are invited this time, and YSS, her brother asked my DH to drive his wife and kid to the airport days before SS can get off of work and fly there with SGS.  my DH says SURE!... where are you going? and SS says ...... to OSD wedding. !?    

So two days later my DH says to me you know, I think I am going to be busy, you might have to drive DIL and SGD (four hours round trip) to the airport.   HAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!! I started laughing my HEAD off!  Like I'm really going to drive four hours for OSD who hasn't invited me to two weddings!!!        My DH didn't think it was funny.  and you know, he wasn't really going to be busy.  he just didn't want to drive four hours to deliver people to a second wedding of his daughter that we are not invited to . 

sandye21's picture

I agree:  " HAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!!"  What is your DH thinking?  He doesn't want to opick them up but doesn't want to look like the bad guy.  So he delegates the job to you.  I know I don't have to say, 'Stand firm on this one'.

Rags's picture

Step back and let them target their toxicity on each other.   If they confront you, take them out.  No quarter, zero tolerance, and make the consequences for confronting you so painful that they will not ever do it again.  If they don't learn, make the consequences more painful the next time they make that mistake.

I learned this with my IL clan.   They learned to keep their crap away from my wife and I.  We applied the same model with the blended family opposition.  They learned, but they did not lock in the learning and had to feel the pain periodically.  We kept delivering on that.