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I need some advice from this group - Senior Night

round2's picture

As a follow up to my last post, there has been zero contact from BM after the Cease & Desist letter was sent. Fingers crossed everything stays this way. 


Here is my dilemma – last week SD17 asked me and her dad if we would walk with her at Senior night. She is part of the varsity athletics program as a Trainer and they are recognized along with the athletes. DH had let me know this invitation was coming so I could process it and decide how to respond. Of course, he wants me to attend and be honored she asked us.


If you have read my past posts, I am not involved with SD17’s life outside of our home. This practice has significantly reduced the BM drama (not completely though). For years, I have refused to attend any school events where BM would be in attendance due to her behavior the last time we were both present at a choir concert for SD.


I asked SD if her mom would be there and she assured me that she would be on the other side of the stadium and there would be no contact. I asked how BM would respond to us walking her instead of mom and she indicated she would be furious. I told her about BM emailing my company and that I am hesitant to be in the same area but would talk it over with her dad. She had no idea her mother had done that and to her credit was mortified it happened. Normally we don’t talk to her about this stuff with her mom; I was having a terrible day and made a snap decision. I still think she is old enough to know some of what goes on.


Through discussions between DH and SD, the decision has been made that her best friend will walk with her and no parents. We feel like that is a good compromise but according to SD, BM is very unhappy with this choice. My question I am struggling with is…. Do I even need to go and be there? Is it an invitation for BM drama? I sincerely do not want to go but am getting pressure from DH since she asked me directly and she has been almost pleasant to be around lately.


What does the group think – would you go?



Winterglow's picture

I would go - she specifically asked you and it is clearly important to her that you be there. If BM kicks up a stink, call security. Don't let BM spoil your SD's day. 

By the way, at 17, she is quite old enough to hear about her mothers antics.You weren't badmouthing her mother, simply explaining why it wasn't a good idea that you walk beside her.

SeeYouNever's picture

BM is going to be pissed no matter what you do unless you stay home to back your bags and instruct your husband to go reconsile with her. So anything short of that is going to draw some sort of fire. This is a truth you need to accept.

Your goal should be to maximize distance and minimize interaction. If DH and SD want you there then go. It's a very public space and *hopefully* BM won't cause a scene. If she does there will be plenty of witnesses.

lieutenant_dad's picture

This is a rough position to be in because the BM in your case is completely off her rocker. 

Does SD live with you all? Could you compromise a go to dinner with her either before or after to recognize her accomplishments, but then go home afterwards to avoid any BM drama? DH could always stream or record the ceremony if you wanted to view it.

As for what to tell SD, I think she is old enough to explain why you behave the way you do in regards to BM. Letting SD know that it's not her, that BM causes drama, and the specific kind of drama she causes isn't a faux pas. If you went into details about DH and BM's relationship or just spouted off about BM being a b*tch, that would overstep. But being honest about what has happened is something SD NEEDS to know, likely because SD will be the next target of some of these (or similar) attacks as she ages.

I used to freak out if I slipped and said something about BM to my SSs. Now that they are 19 and 15, and they see a lot of the dysfunction with BM, I've not beaten myself up about it. They need to know that loaning BM money may result in never getting that cash back, and that BM likely won't uphold a promise related to finances, etc etc etc. Your SD needs to understand that her BM isn't perfect (and neither is her dad or you), and you can deliver that message respectfully.

round2's picture

Thanks for the response. SD17 does not live with us full-time, EOW and holidays. BM will not 'allow' any additonal time even letting DH take her for ice cream occassionally. Not sure who she will torture when SD goes to college next year. 

I really really do not want to go - I feel like this carefully constructed BM defense system has worked well and I hate to let go of it. 

Kes's picture

I never used to go to any of these kinds of school things for similar reasons to you - ie it was a prime opportunity for NPD BM drama.   I think I went to a couple of things, nearly 20 yrs ago, and it was disastrous.  My advice to you would be, don't go.  Your SD knows now, the reasons you are reluctant to go, and hopefully understands.  Why open yourself up to a shit show?  Your DH will get over it. 

Edited to say - I like AgedOut's solution below - if you feel you want to go - then this would be a darned good idea. 

AgedOut's picture

I'm torn on this one. Torn between the past history w/ BM and you needing to seperate yourself from it and/or your SD wanting you to be there for a special moment in her life. 

If it were a routine sporting event, I'd suggest you not go so you could avoid the drama but this is a one time moment and she wants you there. 

If it were me, I'd go but be fully prepared to leave as soon as the Sr. moment is over. Usually these things occur before the sporting event. I'd take two cars and after your SDs moment, have your husband walk you to your car. 


round2's picture

You and DH are on the same page - he said we could leave at half time. SD has to stay for the entire game and will come to our house once it over over. 

tog redux's picture

I personally would not go, and would explain to SD that I was doing it for HER benefit, to prevent her mother from ruining the event. But I would urge DH to go without me. 

round2's picture

I have no issue with DH going - he should be there. When SD did cheer in middle school he went to most of the games, I never attended. I appreciate everyone's input, this is a hard one for me. 

tog redux's picture

To me, it seems she should have one of her parents there.  Is there a reason she isn't asking BM to do it? 

CLove's picture

And protect yourself with body cams or some recording device...or whatever is legal...

Perhaps consider a disguise? Half joking, although I know this is no joking matter.

Id go. And definitely its a good idea to let SD know what has been done against you, so that she doesnt feel like its on her to fix. Let her know that her mother has to own her issues, and its not up to anyone else to fix.

round2's picture

I could dress up as a normal person who has raised relavtively sane children. She would never recognize someone so different than who she is!

CLove's picture

Well, you have to have a sense of humor in Stepworld or you will go bonkers.

But yeah - you should go and make sure you can document everything just in case.

BethAnne's picture

Personally I have accepted that I will not be attending any events in my sd's life where her mother will be. If I want to I will find another way to celebrate with my SD. It isn't worth the hassle to me, I would rather that my SD get to enjoy her events without drama and I would rather avoid the drama and being called every name under the sun and being accused of all sorts. 

If BM has already tried to interfere with your career then I would avoid going and find another way to celebrate. It isn't worth your livelyhood. 

notsurehowtodeal's picture

Do what you want to do - which in this case is not to go. You said, "I really really do not want to go - I feel like this carefully constructed BM defense system has worked well and I hate to let go of it." Your defense system has been working well, and in your heart you don't want to go - so don't. SD is 17, old enough to understand and old enough to deal with whatever disapointment she may feel.

You are dealing with a very HCBM - she has already reached out to your place of employment. This is not a time to stand on principal - you need to be practical and protect yourself.

hereiam's picture

I agree. If she wasn't quite as high conflict, I would say go with your DH, ignore her, blah, blah, blah. However, she is quite unhinged, so... Stick with your gut.

advice.only2's picture

Personally, I would not attend, you have already indicated to SD what has happened with her mother and let her know for your own peace of mind being at any event with BM present is a no go for you at this point.  Now I would also let her know that you appreciate her invitation and will be cheering from the side lines as your DH live streams/Facetimes/Zooms you so that you can be a part of this moment and still ensure your personal safety.  Reality is SD is 17 and needs to learn that her mother's horrible actions have repercussions that are going to affect her as well.  Is it fair to SD, no of course not, but it's not fair that you be forced to put yourself into positions that could affect you mentally and physically by her mother.