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frustratedmom_2021's picture

Thank you for accepting me!

I'm a 53 year old stepmom to two boys age 19 and 17, they were 12 and 10 when I met their dad. I have a 36 year old son and two grandchildren 8 and 4, I had my son young and had him raised when I met my current husband. My husband is 49 and lost his late wife to suicide when the boys were small, I was very reluctant to become a stepmother to boys about to be teenagers but I felt like God had put me in this position for a reason. My husband and I met in 2014 and I moved in with him in 2015, we both swore we would never marry again but we got married in 2019. My husband's mother lives next door and had practically raised the boys their whole life so she was their second mom and there was never any chance of me making any decisions or parenting. I guess I kind of thought we would be a family and I could be there for them when they needed a mom but that was never the case, I would have their favorite foods fixed when they would get home from school only to be told that their grandmother was taking them out to eat, the first time wasn't that big of a deal but then it continued and my husband wouldn't say anything or make them stay home and eat what I had made for them, the boys loved eating out and was accustomed to going out to eat a lot and would beg to go and their grandmother would always give in, we're not talking McDonald's, more like red lobster and ocharleys and who can compete with that.


justmakingthebest's picture


If you can't win against grandma and your husband won't stand up for you (which is VERY WRONG and the source of the problems that you have)- Stop. Just don't cook anymore. Your husband can take on cooking and shopping. You aren't anyone's servant. 

I am sure you do a better job and do things like shop with a budget and meal plan, etc- However, if you push it to him to see what you are going through he might have more empathy for the effort you are putting in to be a family unit. 

CLove's picture

Theres more Im sure.

Welcome! Post as much as you need to and read others post as well. Its not very common to have a MIL who takes over mother rold, but it does happen.

I hope you stopped cooking for them after that!!!!

The best you can do is be the "fun auntie", and focus your time attention and resources on your grands. Eventually MIL might realize she wants a better relationship with long as you arent "competing" with her for mother role.

frustratedmom_2021's picture

Thank you all for the welcome and great advice. I did stop cooking for them and the grandmother continued taking them out to eat. I've never met a family as peculiar as the one I'm in now, I was definitely raised differently. I come from a long line of codependent women and I've always tried way too hard to make people happy, especially people I love, this family fights and says hurtful things then hugs each other before they leave and say I love you, I know thats the way some people are but I had never experienced it, my husband thought he could be that way with me and it didn't work, I would get very upset and emotional and he would tell me I was too sensitive and needed thicker skin, needless to say this didn't go over very well and we had lots of problems over that but after a few years of living that way and a year of counseling I have learned that it's ok to be who I am and to never apologize for it. The grandmother is very controlling and my husband gives into her a lot but after learning about the family I see why, my husband's late wife who committed suicide had emotional and mental problems and the grandmother practically raised the boys from the day they were born and spoiled them rotten, I guess that's a downfall of having grandparents next door. The boys grew up hearing their parents fight a lot, I only have my husband's side of the story about his late wife but after having lived with this family as long as I have I have to wonder if my husband and his mother played a physiological role in her suicide. I started going to therapy to convince myself that I wasn't crazy like I was starting feel, I learned that my husband was a narcissist and so is his mother, I didn't know much about narcissism but I quickly learned everything I could about it and it explained so many things, my husband had almost convinced me that I was crazy and everything he said was correct, I couldn't believe that I had so easily fallen for it but he did it over time and had isolated me from my family and friends so I didn't have anyone telling me I wasn't crazy, that's when I started to wonder about the late wife and what she had endured, especially being young when she married and then having children and a mother in law next door telling you how to raise your kids and then basically taking over your job as mother and your husband never defending you or telling his mother to back off, if I had one wish it would be to hear the late wife's side of the story. When the mother killed herself thebiys were 6 and 8 and ofciurse it was a very difficult time for them, naturally they were shielded from any more pain in their lives and given anything they wanted which I see no problem with for a while but not years like they have been. The oldest son is 19 and the first child so he was always given preference and has done well in school and plans to attend college but will probably never leave home, the younger son is completely opposite and loves outdoor adventures like hunting and 4 wheeling like his dad so of course they have always had a close relationship and the older son has always been jealous of that relationship. As soon as the youngest boy got his drivers license he was set loose to do as he pleased and nothing was ever said, I felt like he still needed boundaries at 16 and that he could get in all kinds of trouble without them especially having a girlfriend but the more I tried to convince my husband of that the more he ignored my advice and let both boys do whatever they wanted with no limitations, almost like doing it on purpose because I was asking him to be a father but if you know anything about narcissists they only think of themselves and what they want so by letting the boys go he didn't have to be tied down and "bothered" with them. I know I've written a lot and there's still a lot more to tell about my road I've walked the past few years. My fingers are tired so I will stop here for now and continue again at a later time. Thanks for listening!