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I keep thinking about this. As SMs we disengage (avoid) interaction with these kids. Is this not giving them more power?

I know it's done to ease SMs anxiety. I just refuse to continue to hide or avoid some kid. I pay the bills, it's my house, I buy the food, Why am I avoiding, hiding, or finding something better to do?

I work 9 hour days all week. I just want to sit at my house, on my sofa and watch my 18mo old daughter play. Interact with my kids, DH and not have to tipy toe or avoid some Dang kid who is 11 years old.

I hate the dynamic and the stress it puts on all of us. DD18mo's basically looses a sister when SD11 and SD9 are their because they like to dominate BD10's time or fuss with her or whatever.

Bs13 will get to the point where he wants to avoid them, so he'll be watching a show, SD11 will come sit right beside him, start yaking it up. SD11 hates BS13's guts right? Doesn't want him to say anything to her?

A few months ago after xmas, SD11 was whining that BS13 went in the field with his copter to get away from "you know who" was what she said, and he was being mean to her. I flew off the handle, she treats BS13 like shit, but she expects him to want her around when she does.

So now Bs13 and I, hide/disappear or go in a different location. The weekend is like a big game of musical chairs going on.

Why do we have to avoid/disengage when it's our HOME! I think I'm just tired of this dynamic.

Who doesn't avoid/disengage? Why do you or dont you?

Ninji's picture

I do not avoid, hide or disengage.

I feel the same as you. I work 10hrs a day at a job I hate, I spend almost every penny I have to help SO make a home for us and Skids. No way am I going to sit back an allow them to run my house or make me feel uncomfortable.

Huge fights at first with Disney dad but he is a lot better. Still has his slip ups but mostly we are on the same page.


This is what irritates me. I do have bios and I do bring in the money and it's only my money mind you that pays DH's mortgage (long story on why it's only in his name) but no respect.

He bends over backwards for those SDs but not ours. I think I've just gotten to the fed up part. I keep thinking wouldn't it be better to just leave and I end up in tears.

dood's picture

That's exactly why I stopped with the more classic disengaging. I just made myself scarce, going out, or into my bedroom and started to think, well, shit... WTH? And, in addition, I disengaged from SO, too... No, no, no... I put myself right back into MY house. And, I told SO in significant detail why I was doing what I had been doing (disengaging) and why that wasn't working for me either. I told him that I shouldn't have to feel uncomfortable when the skid is here, and that I could drop dead and it would probably take him a few days to notice. He seemed pretty surprised about that, but when I cited zillions of specifics, he seemed to get it. I told him that I had no confidence that he had my back where skidly was concerned, and that I felt like the 5th wheel all the time. That was relatively recent (about a month) and so far, the dynamic has been loadsss better and I've reclaimed my house.


It infuritates me. It does. I have never not been the WOMAN of my house. I had a marriage before for 17 years. My exh was a total ass to me but I was the WOMAN of that house. I raised the kids and didn't have to hide or avoid not one damn soul.

My exh didn't stand up for me with his family, so guess what they were uninvited. Done!

He never fought with me on it, I just told him, I won't be treated that way in my home, if you'd like to live here alone, you can have them all you want.

I thought I'd make it easier on myself. Now I resent it all. I fight with DH all the time, we just had a fight over his overtime. I hate it. I told him in that argument if I voice my feelings he has a fit but if the skids do he's running after them. That I know where I stand and I will just shutup.

DH just says "you just want something to be mad about" "you look into stuff too much". I think his actions of getting upset when I say I'm unhappy about him working until 9pm on a friday night we dont have the SDs and my other bios, shouldn't lead to a fight but it does.

So I told him do what he wants with whom he wants, Im out of it, I will just shut up and my only response with be K.

He text me back 11 times "k" like a freaking 2 year old. I'm sitting her almost in tears and not wanting to go home.

Ninji's picture

I hear "You just want fight about something" all the time. Is so frustrating to not be heard. I can't count how many times I have told SO that I don't want to fight. I just want to be HEARD. He completely misses what I'm trying to say to him anytime we argue. I feel like he already has it in his mind what I'm going to say and responds to that. Which a lot of the time is NOT what I said at all.

I'm sorry your feeling so down. StepHell Sucks.

dood's picture

I got shit like that as well. I'm just trying to find stuff to pick on poor skidly about... I tell him the same thing: It's not about -name thing here- specifically... it's the Bigger Picture Dynamic and Principle of the thing that I'm talking about. It's not rational to think that I'm normal, smart, reasonable, pleasant, etc., etc, most all of the time, and when the skid is concerned, I'm what? Insane? Delusional? Sybol? I mean really? Maybe, Just Maybe, It's Not Me.

In my case, SO does this crap when he knows I'm right and there is just Z-E-R-O intelligent commentary to make. He ends the conversations usually by indicating that he doesn't want to lose his son over "xyz". (He and his DD no longer speak at all - long story, good riddance). I try to remind him that when it comes to his ex-drama, I've been 100% right about every, single thing, and it would be odd that I'd be that far off base now... and that if you have to buy, bribe or ignore unfit behavior to not "lose your son", you've got bigger problems than I originally thought.


Well I'm so close to walking that my feet are itching. LOL

But seriously I'm tired. I can't express my discomfort or feelings but his SDs can walk around pouting, stomping, and slamming the glass door IM PAYING FOR.

DH doesn't get it. I don't have to take this and I don't NEED HIM. He thinks I do because I'm broke, he's made sure that I stay that way.

If I get to work at home and save daycare, he's screwed. I will have $500-$600 to save or do whatever. I am praying that happens like soon.

ClutterMusings's picture


Don't go home! Go do something more fun after work. I don't know why we sometimes feel we HAVE to go home right after work to a hostile energy at home (I do too sometimes).

Promise, your sulking, fit-pitching husband will be there whenever you get there. Don't rush it. LOL!


Oh he isn't going anywhere, not even in the house, which he is sitting at right now because he lost his keys and I don't even get off work until 4:30 then I have to head to the babysitters and it takes 1 hr 1/2 to get home.

So I go home because it's so far away and my 18mo old would like to be at home. Plus the 2 dogs who have been crated all day would like to go out.

Mega Mom34's picture

I feel the same way you do, why should I have to hide from a kid in my house? My 14 year old SD is a little smart a$$ and thinks the world revolves around her. It's a shame when I have to hide my personal belongings from her just to keep them for myself and my other three kids. I have started taking over the items in my house...if I pay for I own and can take over any and everything. While she has her temper tantrum I block her for the cable and wifi until she acts like she has some respect.


If I did that DH and SDs would have 2 dressers, a kitchen table, 2 chairs and an air mattress.

EVERYTHING is mine, I bought before them or during our relationship because DH always cries poor.

I have stopped. I don't even by toilet paper anymore.

NoWireCoatHangarsEVER's picture

I'm an on the go kinda girl. I check the paper and see what's going on at the museum, if there is a festival, etc, etc. I live in Florida. I'm an hour away from the beach. I'm an hour and a half away from Disney World. My SO is a homebody. He would like nothing more than to sit at home and watch Netflix. I used to take the stepkids with my kids and I. We'd go to the skating ring, pottery classes, go cart riding, you name it. We would go to the mall. We would have lunch. Then I disengaged. They come over and we go off and have fun without them. They got real tired real fast of sitting at home with daddy on the weekend doing nothing and me and mine coming home tired from an adventure so they quit coming over for the most part. Now he just goes and takes them to dinner every other weekend. If they spend the night its just one night every four months or so.

But I remember those days that you describe. I was in my own bedroom and I put on a movie I got at the RedBox. At the 20 minute mark, he stopped by movie and took it to the beginning and said, "I'm sure SD13 is going to going to want to see this." I was like WTF.

inStep Monster Wedsnesday Martin said stepmom's need doors and spaces of their own. You need a place of security where they can't intrude.


It was easier to hide per se when I didn't have the 18mo old. She doesn't want to be confined to one room and why should she. I can't expect DH to actually watch her either. He took her outside with him yesterday, I was working at home, trying to get a project done after I'd picked up my kids.

I went out after 5 minutes to check on her, HE WAS ON HIS PHONE chatting with someone from work, moving wood and she was sitting on the wood.

She could have easily walked away and he wouldn't have noticied. We live in a remote area. There are animals and we live with woods all around us. There are no close places to go and I'm totally broke.

On the 2nd we (me and my 3) are going to a friend's kids birthday party at an ice skating rink. The SDs are NOT invited. So DH has already started pouting and saying well I'll just hang out with my friends some too.

Yep DH is going to hang out with his friends on our free weekends, you know without his bratty kids to get back at me for going to my friend's kid's party. I guess he'll be super mad when 2 weeks from that is her other kids party and I go there WITHOUT THEM TOO.

awakening's picture

How I feel your pain! If Skids are here I have to hide as well, I only leave the bedroom to use the bathroom and thats it, I can even barely cook and eat, it got to the point where I am literally their prisoner when they are here but then I moved in into SO's house what was a huge mistake, I pay half the house bills but because they already lived here before its their house, Skids run the house, make the rules and tell daddddddyyyyyyy what to do. Everything in the house what is very little because either BM took it when she left or Skids have literally destroyed everything belongs to SO, I have hidden all my stuff and have a storage unit and have never in the four years of this hell bought one single thing for the house, SO cries poverty too and excepted me to get him nice furniture, couches and other luxuries for the home among other reasons to make it more appealing to Skids to come f*******g way!!!! From me neither of them gets anything and I'm dammed if I would ever provided them with any comfort in a house I have no say, the couches are beyond broke, it sucks to sit on it but oh well, no way I'm spending money in couches for them to destroyed, pee on ( SS13 sleeps and pees on the couches) and for them to enjoy every weekend while I have to spend the time hiding in the bedroom. Everything in the house is broke, damaged or no longer exists, theres actually very little furniture or anything, same thing with the dishes, all broke, cracked, pieces missing but again no way I'm providing any comfort for any of them in a house I have to say.

And yes I'm taking steps and saving to leave, I'm thankful I found this site before I made the mistake of marry and have a child with SO, just wish I had found it before I decided to move in.

Ohsoconfused's picture

I was considering SO's offer to move in, and was on track to do it. He has young adult kids and their partners who are just the grown up version of SKs from hell. Completely absorbed by their own sense of entitlement. They visit SO's house constantly and use, take, break anything they want. Last month one son broke a shelf in the fridge and just left it in place with the jagged bits waiting to cut someones offer to replace the part, and SO's excuse was oh he's just young, he'll learn. The kid is 25 and does not have any social graces whatever.

I have always been expected to do the cooking for them all when i visit, and it would be the same if I lived there. SO expects to provide meals for anyone who shows up unannounced. Last few times i've just retreated to the bedroom and let him get on with the cooking. He makes comments afterward about how they think I'm antisocial. Too bad!

We've have had a long distance thing for 2.5 years but I just this week found out SO had been lying big time about contact with the BM...said he loathed why does he take her out for dinner...etc. We had a huge fight about boundaries with the BM, and the SKs, in the context of living together, and I basically got the " you are not the boss of me" response, instead of cooperation. So that for me was the nail in the coffin, sad, but so glad Ive read these posts. Someone is about to become an ex-SO.

It is so easy to feel lonely when you live alone like I do right now. Wanting an instant family is a stupid fantasy. I miss my own adult kids a lot but they are 1000's of miles away, living good independent lives. I should learn to truly value my peace and quiet, and I wish the same for the folks on here who must hide out from SKs.

SemiSaneMama's picture

I was just thinking about this last night as I am disengaged as well. DH & I had argument last night after visitation . Of course I am just nitpicking & just starting arguments for no reason. I hate his kids, blah blah....

I'm tired of tip toeing around in my own home,
I'm tired of keeping my comments to myself so that skids don't overhear me & go run tell their mommyyyyy.
I'm tired of getting bitched out because I buy my dd a new outfit & bring it home while skids are visiting.
I'm tired of walking into a room and having SS12 slide down a wall to prevent himself from coming within 12 ft of me, like I have the plague.
I'm tired of all the Disney dad crap.

If DH would parent his kids, like really parent, with structure & discipline, it might be barable. It just seems like one big guilt trip on DH part when skids are here. "Poor SS12, he's just messed up" (BS) He is PASd, brainwashed & smarter than DH. He does what he does because he CAN & without punishment.