It’s literally always something
I feel like I could write a blog every day with all the crap going on. This past week:
SD13 told us Crazy yells at her every time she has a Dr. Appt (which is a lot) because she has to take off work, and she complains that I should be taking her to some of these appts. In Crazy's mind, she gets to repeatedly tell everyone that I'm not a mom or parent, have no right to teach SD anything mom-related, BUT, I should be a taxi when it benefits her. I told SD I was pretty sure her mom would lose her mind if I took her to an appt, and DH agreed. SD said, no she wants you to. I said, "too bad! After the way she has treated me and continues to treat me, I'm not doing anything to help her. I'm here to support your dad- if he ever can't take you to an appt on his time, I will, but I'm not here to take off work to make your moms life easier". Sorry not sorry, and I hope she tells Crazy what I said. We've told her this same thing via OFW, but she apparently thinks it's logical to yell at SD for it and for having to take her to appts that SHE SCHEDULED.
The roller-coaster with SD continues- she used to tell me she loves me and hugged me goodnight every night. Stopped that. Started again occasionally a few months ago, and now we are back to her completely ignoring me when she says goodnight. She comes up to DH next to me, hugs him and says goodnight/love you, and walks away. She did it last night and DH looked at me after and said "Did you get anything"? I said, nope. We have been talking about it and he doesn't understand why she acts the way she does either. He did tell me the other day that I shouldn't bother wasting my time going to SD's Christmas concert- she asked if we were going, but DH has to work so I told her to text me when it is and maybe I will. DH told me later not to bother- it won't be appreciated and doesn't seem to matter to her, so I shouldn't go out of my way for her. I appreciate DH saying that. I will not be attending. He knows her behavior is hurtful to me. I try so hard with this girl. I'm always there to talk to, help her with girl things, give her my old clothes and do nice things for her, and while she is polite and knows she can talk to me, I'm definitely considered minimally important. Time to stop trying, because it's exhausting and hurtful.
SK's went to Crazy's today and I am so nervous about this SS/Crazy fiasco. DH basically sent SS back there. SS said he talked to Crazy for a minute and she asked if he was staying with us FT- SS said no because papers haven't been filed. DH told him to listen to her, follow rules, and we'll see how it goes. I am terrified she is going to relinquish all custody. If she does, there would be no choice but to take him, and I'm so afraid of what that would do to my marriage. We would have to have a real come to Jesus about rules and consequences.
Oh! And I almost forgot that while DH, SD and I were out shopping, having lunch and bowling, SS called DH to ask if he could have his gf come over while we were gone. They have been together a month and we met her once for 5 seconds. DH and I are 100% on the same page that we will do whatever it takes to not have a skid get pregnant/get someone else pregnant. Aside from Skids moving in FT, this is my biggest fear. We have a "bedroom door must be cracked" rule when girls are over. Lots of lectures and talks from DH to skids. So DH tells SS he will talk to me and let him know. I said, you could have handled that one, that's an obvious no. He said he was going to tell him yes, unless I disagreed. I said, are you serious??? You want them to have the whole house to themselves?! That's a hell no. He text SS no, but of course it looks like I'm the bad guy. Why did DH think this would be ok, you ask? Because "I've talked to him about not having sex". Ok DH, and teens listen to that! I don't even care if I'm the bad guy, I am however shocked and disappointed at DH's level of misguided trust.
My steplife-induced anxiety pills cannot keep up with this.
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I know just what you mean about the never-ending crises. I used to think that our kids were standing in line, as soon as we'd finished with one kid's drama, another was just waiting.
I also understand feeling like a taxi service. That movie Stepmom had a lot of fantasy elements but I do recall Julia Roberts suddenly having to drive the SKs around.
You're lucky that your DH has a realistic view of your situation. Thongs would be a whole lot worse if he didnt.
I'm crossing my fingers you don't end up with FT custody, like we did. Altho, I have to say FT was surprisingly easier than the transitional hell.
Crossed toes too
Thank you! I am crossing everything possible that we don't end up with full custody of SS. When I try to picture it, it seems impossible. I just can't even imagine it.
It exactly feels like they are standing in line with their drama. And sometimes there's that special treat where they both have drama at the same time! SS is constantly texting DH with some crap- DH tells me some but not all. I'm happy I'm not exposed to that also, because I don't think I could handle it.
I'm sorry you are going
I'm sorry you are going through all of this, but you are definitely not alone in your feelings. Being a SP is a thankless job.
Prior to BM moving out-of-state with SS 5 years ago, she expected me to be personal taxi service, babysitter, etc. at her beck and call, but she was also the first to make accusations against me, get wildly jealous if SS showed me any type of affection, repeatedly reminded me that I wasn't SS' Mom or parent, despite the fact that she referred to her GF as SS' "other Mom" and "parent", and constantly harass DH about me. I finally said enough was enough. I removed myself from the "co-parenting" dynamic, leaving BM, GF, and DH to duke it out. I did nothing to make BM's life easier - if SS needed babysitting and DH wasn't available, too bad. If BM needed SS picked up from school, daycare, or sports and DH couldn't, sorry. If BM was going to treat me like nothing, then I would be nothing and do nothing. I have had no phone or email contact with BM directly in 4 years and I have only seen her a handful of times, not saying a word to her. She is blocked on absolutely everything. BM still reminds DH that if he is unable to pick up SS for visitation for whatever reason, I can make the 8 hour roundtrip drive to pick him up, per our CO (I'm not obligated but 3rd parties are allowed to). DH laughs because he knows I would rather stick hot pokers in my eyes than drive 8 hours roundtrip to do the parents' jobs. DH and BM (or GF because she has) can make that trek; I will be comfortably sitting at home binging Netflix or doing literally anything else.
I also know what you mean about skids stopping affection. My SS has never called me "Mom" ever. I never expected him to, since he has BM. Then, all the sudden, 6 months after BM started dating GF, he was calling GF "Mom." I was hurt, not because I expected it, but because I had been in his life for 5 years at this point and I got quickly replaced and pushed further down the totem pole by a GF of 6 months. It is clear as day that I am last on SS' mind. He doesn't recognize me for any of the holidays: Christmas, my birthday, Mother's Day, etc. If we were playing a game that required a team, SS would pick BM, GF, DH, his former kindergarten teacher, and even the mailman over me. SS will tell me he loves me if I say it first. He doesn't really initiate hugs unless he is also giving one to DH. So I totally get what this feels like. I have just learned to disengage and do only what I want to for SS, leaving the rest to DH. It has helped, but it still hurts to be on the same level as a friend of a friend or estranged family member when I have been in his life since he was 10 months old. Be kind to yourself and only do what you want to do, not what you feel obligated to do.
Unfortunately, these HCBMs create these dynamics. They want to be the ONLY parent, but they don't want to do any of the work, so they pawn skids off on their partners, their parents, extracurricular activities, etc. Yet, they also don't want their exes (DH) to do any of the work either, as it gives up their control over skids. BM has made this whole situation hell for me, so she gets ignored in return. If she is mad about DH and my lack of involvement with SS, she shouldn't have pushed so hard to keep us out of his life. We aren't fighting for the slivers she gives us. I don't usually hate people but I despise her and I cannot wait to legally untangle ourselves from her in 7 years - I wouldn't spit on her if she was on fire and I was the only source of water on earth.
Your BM and Crazy are 2 peas
Your BM and Crazy are 2 peas in a pod. The jealousy is out of control. I did the same, blocked her on everything within the first year of dating. She has been blocked for almost my entire 7yr relationship with DH. lol. I hate her with the heat of 1,000 fiery suns, but I don't wish death on her because that would mean FT skids- I just wish things like a raging STD, extreme weight gain, early onset hair loss....
Thank you for the kind comments, I am still adjusting to this new SD and how to handle it all. It doesn't help that it's a roller coaster and one day there are hugs, the next week, nothing. I'm going to attempt to step back from the effort I've been putting in and let it all play out.
The hot and cold, wishy washy
The hot and cold, wishy washy behavior is the hardest part to adjust to and it is definitely not a painless process. I think you will just reach a point where you are a little numb and just "there" when SD is around. Thats how I feel about SS most of the time. Things BM, GF, and SS do annoy me, which is why I come here to vent, but when SS is here, I feel almost shut off to him. It's not good or bad, it just is. I hangout with him if I want to, contribute if I want to, etc. but at the end of the day, it is MY CHOICE whether I do or don't, and DH supports me fully in that.
Making your involvement YOUR choice will give you some sense of control back in a situation that leaves most of us feeling powerless.
You might want to change
You might want to change "bedroom door must be cracked" to "wide open". A friend of mine had the "cracked" rule. Knocked on the door, frantic shuffling, pushed it open to son and gf frantically adjusting clothes. They were going at it behind that cracked door. *fool*
Where there's a will, there's a way.
DH barely enforces the cracked-door rule. SS's bedroom is upstairs and DH never goes up when he has his gf over- I do. DH prefers the "blind trust, stick your head in the sand" method of ensuring SS follows this rule. Although DH is terrified of SS getting a girl pregnant, he also doesn't want to do anything to make sure SS isn't doing anything in our house. Heaven forbid SS have strict rules.
Start calling him grandpa.
Start calling him grandpa. *diablo*
When SS first had a gf, DH didn't care if SS didn't follow the cracked-door rule (SS closed his door a few times) and started getting annoyed at me for asking him to enforce it. I told DH he better start picking out his name now- does he want to be called Grandpa, Opa, Peepaw, Papaw...Gramps? It literally shut the impending argument down right there and DH has not complained once about enforcing the cracked-door rule. He has even mentioned it to SS. Apparently having a girl there with no one else home is fine though. *ok*
Ah yes the "blind trust"
Ah yes the "blind trust" method of parenting. DH has been employing this for years with Little Idiot. Stick your head in the sand until the problem has snowballed into gigantic, unmanageable proportions (ie. The girl is pregnant, Little Idiot owes tens of thousands of dollars) God forbid they play a little offense and risk upsetting the kids by setting some boundaries and saying "no, that's a terrible idea/don't even think about doing that". It might hurt some fee-fees and they might no longer be their kid's bff.
It drives me absolutely
It drives me absolutely INSANE. "Oh I talked to SS about it, so I think it will be fine". Really? Cause let's check the tapes on how many other things you have "talked to SS about" that he listened to. SS listens for a week or 2, max, and then reverts right back to what he was doing before. Sometimes he only makes it days! And these are teens. With wild, raging hormones. Jesus DH.
At least I know it's not just mine, your DH is a pro at this also...
My husband did "the talks" as
My husband did "the talks" as well. Did no good. Every other weekend when they came there would be a new talk. It did crap..
The key element of that concept being.... BLIND.
Ostrich mode parenting repeadely destroys families generation after generation.
Sadly, this is far more often than not a wilfull choice by the idiot parents who perpetrate this travesty against their own spawn. IMHO.
Though at some point each of us has to assume ownership of any issues we inherit from our parents and fix them, or pepetrate ongoing crap. At some point, the progeny of ostrich mode parents own their own performance.
Sadly, both my IL clan and the SpermClan are examples of this. Until fairly recently, every GK in my IL clan was conceived out of wedlock, if not born out of wedlock. Starting with my DW having SS-30 as a single teen mom.
Both of SIL's were born out of wedlock to avoid having to pay for their birth cost. This allowed SIL and her DH to apply for charitable foregiveness of the hospital bills. Once they got the charity, SIL and her DH married. BIL1 and his wife tried to sell that they got pregnant on their wedding night and tested pregnancy positive 48hrs later.
Oddly, our luggage was delayed by several days when we flew to SpermLand for BIL1's wedding due to a killer Ice/Snow storm. They offered my DW BIL1's wife's BC pills nearly a week before the wedding. When they realized that their bullshit "we got pregnant on our wedding night" crap was countered by the fact that they were trying to give away their BC, they got quiet in a hurry on that topic. That was one that I did not point out. When DW handed them back their pills and asked what they were doing to prevent..... shortly before their big announcement. Anytime we were present, they avoided recounting their 'pregnanty on their wedding night' bullshit. They perpetrated it any time there was a family gathering we were not at, and the rest of the clan lined up to guzzle that Kool-Aid.
BIL2 and his wife miscarried twins and then were pregnant with their first child at their wedding. Though no 'pregnant on their wedding night' bullshit out of BIL2.
The SpermClan version of this is my SS-30 and his 3 younger also out of wedlock half sibs by two other baby mamas.
SpermGrandHag hated being reminded of her idiot son and his breeding with underage children throughout most of his 20s. His statutory rapist efforts were long term and procreatively successful.
Sadly for both his victims and his shallow and polluted genepool cursed spawn. Except for my SS, who won the mom lottery.
My DH would do the "I have to
My DH would do the "I have to check with ESMOD"... and obviously that means that he would have said yes.. but I vetoed it.. so throwing me under the bus. He got the hurt "but I'm trying to include you and not do things without your input".. but I told him that by saying it that way.. "check with Esmod".. it was obvious that at min I said no.
I said.. you either say "Let me think about it".. or "NO".. or if it's something obviously a yes.. just say it. but don't make it seem like I'm the party pooper here.
Great idea! "Let me think about it" is much better than "let me check with Truenorth", thereby throwing me under the bus and making it completely obvious that I'm the one saying no. Yes he is trying to include me, but is also throwing me under the bus...
My jaw dropped when I read
My jaw dropped when I read that part. Part of me thinks maybe he knew you'd say No!! But phrased it that way anyhow. I agree it makes you look like the bad guy. My skids probably knew when I was behind a "no". And I said No more often. I agree with the door wide open policy
Oh I'm sure he knew I'd say
Oh I'm sure he knew I'd say no. He just wants to be "yes man" to SS, so I'm surprised he didn't just tell him yes. I absolutely hate when he acts like he's afraid to parent his son. And if you're going to include me in the decisions, don't set me up as the fall guy!
Why do these jerk off DH's throw their loving wives under the bus? Cowards, desperate to get crumbs from the skid. Pathetic.
I know you said you didnt really care if you are the bad guy. However everytime DH does this the skids grow more resentment towards you . As if they dont have enough already.
Your DH is being a coward. He gets to play good daddio and you get assigned the evil nay sayer SM.
This needs to stop
DH still has a no boys in SD
DH still has a no boys in SD's room and shes 18! I agree with him. Yes she and her boyfriend will find ways to "get it on" but he's not going to make it easy for them! And she would never be allowed to be at our home alone with him.
As for your SD - seriously prepare yourself for her wanting less and less to do with you. Think of it this way - babies smile at and love everyone. Little kids like almost everyone. But as kids grow older they like less and less people. Your SD may have started out maybe even loving you but as she matures she will pick BM's corner and consider you an enemy at worst - an unimportmant person in her life at best.
I had to accept that my SD will never love me. That we will never be close, and sometimes it still hurts. But I just try to focus on the positive which is at least she and I are polite to one another, she's a good kid that will not be full of drama and she has weaned herself off of DH so she is here less and he and I are having more time to ourselves (which unfortunatly may be too late since so many issues have been growing for years but thats another issue)
I wanted to say to DH, so
I wanted to say to DH, so when SD is 16 and has a BF and asks to have him over when we're not home, would you let her? Because the answer would be NO. He has such a double standard with her- he always takes the more strict approach with SD than he does with SS, and his excuse is "they're different kids so they need to be handled differently". Whatever DH, SS is his favorite and he is afraid of not being SS's favorite. But he needs to look at it as, ok I wouldn't allow SD to do this, so SS will be just fine if I don't let him do it either.
I think there's a chance SD may come around, and we anticipate things getting more and more volatile with her and Crazy as SD gets older, just like is happening with SS (he used to defend her and be super close to her, but now he is seeing how nuts she is), but who knows for sure, and in the meantime your advice is spot-on- prepare myself for her wanting less and less to do with me, and for the fact that she may even not like me at all at some point. I can't believe we still have 4-1/2 years left of this....
I swear to God it seems like
I swear to God it seems like stepparents are put on this Earth just to be the scapegoat/bad guy in any situation where a bioparent might upset their kid by saying, "no" to something. My DH does this with me fairly often and it makes me nuts. He's perfectly fine planning most things with SD and then just telling me about it, but when it's something he wants to say no to, it's almost like he looks at me to say, "no" instead of saying it himself. I started calling him out on it and asked him how many times his parents said no and didn't give him a reason. He said plenty, and I said, same here. So, why do we need to justify every single freaking no to SD? We don't. Sometimes a no is a no.
My SD10 is also inconsistent with showing me affection. She rarely says goodnight to me, but will always make sure to say it to DH. She leaves the house all the time and never says good bye to me. She'll come home from school while I'm there and not even greet me. She comes in, takes her shoes and coat off, and breezes by to her bedroom. Maybe after 20 minutes she'll come out and say something. Usually asking for a snack. At some point I just accepted it and I've started to treat her like a cat, lol. If she wants to give me a hug, I'm up for it. If she says hello to me when she comes home, I make sure to say hi and ask how her day was. I don't try too hard, but I try enough. And honestly, all that outweighs the times she does stuff like says thank you for making dinner, or when she tells me I look nice before I leave the house for work, or when we do something together and she says she had a nice time.
It does make me feel better
It does make me feel better to know I'm not the only one dealing with inconsistent skids. I've even mostly adjusted to the fact that she used to give me a hug and say I love you, and then it abruptly stopped. Now it's the roller-coaster of inconsistency that I need to adjust to.
And that's exactly it- you can tell kids no, DH was told no when he was a kid. I don't know what it is about SS, but he has SS in this "buddy" space, and he doesn't want to ruin it. He does yell at him for things, but then tries to counteract that by saying yes to everything else and not making SS do anything extra around the house. DH refuses to ask him to take out the trash, mow the lawn, or shovel. Absolutely will not do it. DH says "I would rather do it myself". BULLSHIT, you just don't want to be the bad guy and ask him to do things you know he doesn't want to do and ruin your "friend/favorite parent" status.
My SO has no rules so at
My SO has no rules so at least he can't tell the skids it is me .I am upset he didn't say something when SS said he wasn't paying attention at the movies with his friends. But I also saw when we dropped them off their were girls there too. Who knows what was going on in that movie theater. One day SO is going to be called out by an adult for his SS behavior. It won't be so funny then.
Wow your SD and and my SD do
Wow your SD and and my SD do the exact same thing. No affection at all anymore. If anything Toxic BM says to SD and I shake my head at it, I'm the worst person on the entire planet. Even though BM neglects her and allows headlice to permanently live in her When DH isnt around she doesn't listen or do anything I say. SS and I get along really well so when she's disrespectful he reminds her not to talk to me like that.
It's so tough being a SP and I am a definite taxi service picking up and driving the kids to school when DH can't get out of work.
I'm not looking forward to the teenage years.. I think DH will buy both SD and SS a box of condoms when they are at the age of starting to have sex. Doors are wide open in our home too.
I did tell DH get SD on birth control though. BM dropped out of school in year 10 and got pregnant with SS. DH only dated her for 5 months and she was pregnant! I said if SD has a mother like that.. get her on birth control asap.
Birth control, stat!
Yep, the second you even suspect she's doing any sexual activities with boys, get that girl on birth control, stat! We talked about taking SD in 8th grade for an IUD, since pills can be missed or taken at the wrong time. Luckily SD started having bad cramps with her period over summer, so she's on the pill already and she hasn't even kissed a boy. She takes other meds at 8pm exactly, so her BC pills are just added in with those and it's very consistent. I would die if she ever got pregnant. She would be going to her moms- I have told DH that if either skid has a baby, I could not handle the baby in the house. DH said he couldn't either so at least that's something. Crazy was a teen mom so she can deal with it. Lol.