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Bio plans "errands" for my DH to run with the stepkids on "his time" with the kids.

101Stepmom101's picture

Bio plans "errands" for my DH to run with the stepkids on "his time" with the kids. I just think this is another way for her to control his time with the kids. We have our own darn errands to run for them/with them when they are with us. Plus, this interferes with being able to plan our weekend. Is this another control move from BIO?

It Sure... seems like it to me. How do I get my husband to realize her motives with these things. Or am I just overthinking this?

strugglingSM's picture

Yup, we have that, too. DH has the kids EOWE (so, typically four days a month), but BM always requests that he take them for haircuts, clothes and shoe shopping, pictures with Santa, and even taking them to the dentist on DH's time. Not sure why she expects DH to get things done in four days that she can't get done in the 26 she has them.

strugglingSM's picture

Yes, I think so. I think she still likes to know that she can tell DH what to do and he'll do it.

I forgot that she also demanded that DH take one son to get his eyes checked and get prescription glasses, because she felt that DH should "have to do something" since she "does everything". DH took him on a Friday night, got the glasses, paid for them in full (without asking BM to pay her 70% as required in the CO), and then SS never wore them because according to BM "he was embarrassed". She tried to tell DH it was his fault because the glasses he got SS were "adult glasses" and DH needed to get him a new pair. Um, no, they weren't "adult glasses". I think the glasses were broken somehow and BM wanted to hide it.

I also think that BM is just "overwhelmed" by life and loves to play the martyr. Mind you, DH has asked for more full custody time, but BM had a fit and says absolutely not, while simultaneously complaining to DH (literally in the same email) that she has to "sacrifice" everything for the children and he doesn't have to "sacrifice" anything.

101Stepmom101's picture

Taking kids & their glasses to get adjusted ~ when she has them another week and half before he gets the kids again. She doesn't work ~ she could swing by there on her weekend or during the week after school ~ but would rather the put it off for him to take them.

Taking the kids shopping to spend a gift certificate that expires soon. Which she could take them anytime this week and heck she had all summer with them to take them.

Taking kids to get haircuts and anything she doesn't want to pay for. She wouldn't want to spend her income on the kids. AKA ~ Child support.

twoviewpoints's picture

I'd take the glasses in to adjust but no to everything else on her 'to do' list. Does she think Dad is the kid's servant and wallet?

No, Dad isn't going shopping and no Dad isn't planning on a hair cut so he's not doing the barber shop. There, pretty easily settled.

I have a hunch though the problem is your DH is falling over himself to say 'yes, of course I will do all these things, BM. Anything else since the kids and I are out and about?'

jackemmamom's picture

Just out of curiosity, why do you say it like this? I have residential custody of our children, with ex getting every other weekend (during the school year). During summer, we have 50/50 custody. During the school year, I am the only one doing homework with them, getting them up and dressed for school, getting them home from school, making dinner and getting them to bed on time. Ex does not have to do any of those things. I always ask him to take our son for haircuts (I always take our daughter) because he has always been telling the stylist how to cut Jack's hair. I would be really upset if he said that was not a good enough reason for him to do that for his son during his visitation. His weekends shouldn't be ALL about having fun, sometimes things just need to get done, and I shouldn't be the only one to always have to do it. Luckily, ex never seems to have a problem with this (nor his live-in girlfriend, that I'm aware of) but if they did, it would really bother me. It's not about playing the martyr, it's about what actually happens during the school year during the week. I work full time and there just isn't time to do everything for my kids that need to be done.

strugglingSM's picture

The other side of that coin is that your ex doesn't get to see the children every day, so he's missing out on that side of parenting as well. That may feel like a burden sometimes, but it's probably a "burden" your ex wishes he could be part of. You may feel that it's unfair that you have to "do everything", but I'm sure your ex feels that it's unfair that you get to see the children 26 days out of the month and he sees them 4 days out of the month.

My DH would love to take on more parenting responsibilities in return for more actual parenting time, but BM refuses.

Also, DH and I were the only ones doing homework with both SSs last year - via phone - and BM told DH he was "being intrusive" by doing that. She told him he had no right to call the children nightly because that was her time. She wasn't doing homework with the children and DH was unhappy about that, so he took it upon himself to call them every evening to work through every assignment with them. In return, BM now takes the children's phones in the evenings, so he can't call them.

In my BM's case, she wants to control every interaction DH has with the kids. If she wants that much control, then she can take on all the responsibility that comes along with that, including managing all of the non-fun parenting tasks.

ESMOD's picture

Well.. because the NCP often has precious little time with the child. Maybe 4 days a month. That the CP 4 weekend days of their own.. plus all the other school/work days to deal with appts and such.

Now, I don't mind if the parents are close geographically if they decide to do appts during the week and CP asks the NCP to take their turn asking off work to deal with a Dr or Dentist appt. That's different than the CP expecting the NCP to use a significant part of his custodial time dealing with something arranged by the CP.

For example.. you make a hair appt at 11 am on a Saturday. You just shot the NCP's ability to go away for the weekend with his family. They can't go even on a day trip on Saturday because they have to basically be there half the day due to the hair thing. Sunday is out because they have to return child by X oclock.

So.. yeah.. I think that routine stuff should be mostly handled by the CP since they have the kid available to them a LOT more. If they don't want that, they can change custody and CS arrangements.

Oh.. and this I hated. "Look, (anything starting with that WORD.. was bad news) I signed up OSD for Field hockey, her first practice is Sunday at 2. You need to get her cleats, shin pads a stick and practice ball and she needs to be at her practice at 2 on Sunday."

Yeah... and so this is Friday at 5 we learn this and since it is a 2 hour drive to deliver her.. we basically get to take her shopping on Saturday then leave sunday morning to give her back. so, you reach into DH's pocket and F up the weekend with basically no notice.

So, ask dad to take off work to go to appts is fine.. he has leave too. But, filling up his precious weekend time with stuff she was too lazy or cheap to take care of? no.

And... we had our share of "daddy, mama was supposed to help me with my project and it's due MONDAYyyyyyyyy." So, yep... our weekend is now scrambling to finish some project that mama promised but didn't deliver on. Off we go to the dollar general (only store within an hour of us when we lived out of town).. praying they have something to get us through.

strugglingSM's picture

Oh yeah, we've had a "project" show up on Friday evening that had not been started and needed to be handed in on Monday morning. The child in question arrived with a blank poster board on Friday evening and said, "can you help me with this?" I first had to explain all of the work that had to be done, then find a copy of the book (the project was a book report and accompanying poster, but the book had been returned to the library), then spend 90% of the weekend working on the project and dealing with tears from the child when he realized all that he had to do. When he returned on Sunday evening, BM sent DH a text saying "you didn't have to do the whole project, we were going to work on it when he got home." Ok, so from 7pm to whenever bedtime is, you were going to write a book report and create a poster? Would have been nice to explain to DH what you planned to do when you got home, so we wouldn't bother wasting his weekend working on it. I knew the report had been assigned six weeks previously, because DH got an email about it from the teacher. When DH forwarded the email, I asked the child if he needed help, and at the time, he said no, he didn't. I'm not above helping, but I am annoyed when I have to scramble at the last minute because BM couldn't be bothered to make sure her child (who is already anxious enough about school as it is) was prepared.

I also agree, if the CP wants the NCP to take time during the week to go to appointments, then by all means, share the burden, but don't surprise the NCP with a list of demands for his time. The CP presumably wanted to be the CP and also presumably likes being able to have primary authority over the child's life. With authority, comes responsibility. You can't pass out responsibility while expecting to still maintain complete authority.

lieutenant_dad's picture

We went through almost the exact same thing last school year. YSS had to do a trifold board for a book report and knew about the report for several weeks. Never mentioned anything to DH or I on any previous weekend. Didn't mention that he was struggling to find a book in his reading level to do the report on (he reads at a high school level and was in elementary school; he always had a hard time finding books). Not a word...

...Until Friday he shows up with nothing and BM informs us he needs the poster, markers/crayons/glue/whatever to make the poster (didn't bother to bring any of that stuff that YSS already owns that we bought for school), and, oh yeah, a book to read.

We put every plan we had for the weekend on hold so that YSS could find a book, read a book, and get started on the project to finish at BM's.

I'm not saying some of this isn't DH's responsibility to help, or that it's entirely on BM for not forcing the issue (YSS hadn't done his due diligence), but one of those two could have informed DH that this was going to be a thing so he was prepared. They could have gone out and bought the supplies for the project, or at least brought over the supplies DH had already bought. Really, they could have done ANYTHING in the week prior versus "oh yeah, this huge project is due Tuesday; have fun figuring it out even though we've had literal WEEKS to come up with a plan".


Dontfeedthetrolls's picture

Yes it is and the best thing to do is say no.

"Sorry but we have plans already and you can do that when you have the kids yourself".

Unless she asks in advance and DH agrees then tough luck.

hereiam's picture

So, I assume your husband does these errands that BM plans for him?

Control, laziness, doesn't want to pay, etc. Your husband seriously doesn't see this? Have you asked him about it? "Hey, DH, why is BM giving you errands to run and why are you doing it?" And "it's for the kids" is not a valid answer, they are for BM.

She will do it as long as your husband bows to her commands.

If you want to make plans, tell him ahead of time that you are making plans for that weekend, so BM will have to run her own errands.

nengooseus's picture

Our BM likes to tell DH do things on his time (haircuts, dental appointments--basically anything she doesn't want to do), but he only does things that he's willing to do. For example, BM wanted SS to get sealants on his teeth during DH's summer time, but he didn't do it. SD needed a haircut (which BM wouldn't have done), so DH took care of it.

You can't keep him from doing what he wants to do, and if he wants to comply, he will.

strugglingSM's picture

That's what my DH does. He does the things that he feels are important to him and ignores most of the others.

He's also told BM that he's happy to provide extras for his children and do things for them, but he can't stand it when she demands that he do it.

For example, every year, she sends DH a list of back to school items that she expects him to buy. She's even told him in the past that if he doesn't buy them, she'll go back and ask for more child support. I've told him to let her, because I'd much rather have the courts decide what he should pay than have to put up with constant demands for extra money from her.

DH likes to buy them shoes because BM buys them poor quality shoes (in his opinion), so we buy them shoes. Sometimes, DH likes to go overboard and I have to remind him that he's already paying for back to school clothes through his child support and that we have to buy clothes for our house, because the kids don't bring anything for their visitation weekends.

The most annoying thing for me is when MIL gets in on the act, asking DH when he's taking the kids back to school shopping. She apparently fails to realize that BM makes twice as much as DH and gets child support from him, so she shouldn't "need help" to cover the cost.

Tomatoe's picture

Maybe she sees him as a parent to his kids and thinks he should be doing parent things to. Shrugs. Crazy i know.

sunshinex's picture

Right I was thinking this too.

We asked BM to practice reading and take SD to the dentist over the summer. Yeah we could just let it go and handle these things but BM can also spend some of her time with SD acting like a parent instead of just having fun.

sunshinex's picture

LOL apparently.

If you're being told to run "errands" during your time with the kids, it's because you're probably not doing much of the actual parenting and someone is starting to resent that a bit... Maybe step up and ask what you can do to help? Check in and see if the child has been to the hairdresser, doctor, dentist, etc. in a while and needs to go?

101Stepmom101's picture

She refuses to talk to me/communicate or have anything to do with me.

sunshinex's picture

That's fine. She should communicate with your husband and HE should be the one asking if the kids need anything that she hasn't had a chance to get to.

101Stepmom101's picture

Oh, she does. She thinks she is still married to him. She asks him to put oil in her car. Which he does and then says it's for the safety of the kids. URM K. It's playing husband to your EX WIFE.
She asks him to fix things at her home. Which if it was not for me putting my foot down he would do fix things within her home. Which she shares with her new husband ~ whom she cheated on my DH with. And now they have a plethora of kids together. Who was also married to someone else. So way to go BIO! Break up two marriages! She's a real winner.

Pay for everything and anything she can nickle and dime him for.

Tomatoe's picture

She is still the kids mother and he is still their father and he needs to do parenting things like haircuts ect.

Willow2010's picture

She is still the kids mother and he is still their father and he needs to do parenting things like haircuts ect.
And who made the rule that BM is the one that can TELL her ex what to do with their kids on HIS time. Nope .. bad form. She can ask, but he should not be condemned if he says no. He only gets 4 days a month. If she wants him to do more parental things, then give him more time to do them.

But I would bet she wont' because it would cut into her CS.

Simpleton21's picture

Exactly Willow! Would the BM listen if they told her what to do on her time with the kid?!?! Hell no! Why is it okay for the BM to try to control the time they have with the kid but not vice versa?!!? Asking the dad to do something is different than demanding and then flipping out if he doesn't do it. Asking the dad to do things isn't the problem. Expecting him to just do them regardless of what he may have already planned on doing with HIS time and acting as if he is a bad dad if he doesn't is the problem!

Disneyfan's picture

"She refuses to talk to me/communicate or have anything to do with me."

She isn't obligated to speak to or interact with you. :?

Willow2010's picture

Her response was to this....

Maybe step up and ask what you can do to help? Check in and see if the child has been to the hairdresser, doctor, dentist, etc. in a while and needs to go?

strugglingSM's picture

Well, if BM can't even be bothered to interact with folks, then she can't complain if things don't happen. No one's a mindreader.

jackemmamom's picture

Exactly! Why should the CP have to do all the "work" and the NCP gets all the fun?

Simpleton21's picture

Good question DirtyDiane! I doubt she would! That is my problem with the demanding/controlling/resentful BMs. They make every effort to withhold as much time as possible and then complain about how they do everything and want the dad to do whatever they say during their time. At least that is the experience we have with BM in our situation. We don't make plans during her time with SD and expect her to abide and she never would even if we tried that.

Peanut575's picture

This is our BM to a T. She complains she has to do everything, yet if DH suggests more time she says no because it would mean she'd get less money. You can't have it both ways, and you can only demand/dictate what your ex does with his kids on his time if he allows you to.

His time is his time, and you're no longer together. If it's not important to an ex to take the kids to get their hair cuts/buy new clothes, he doesn't have to. If a BM wants to share more of the 'work', they need to be willing to share custody more equally.

twoviewpoints's picture

When the NCP gets a lousy two period 48hrs a month, my first question to the CP would 'hey, no problem, tahnks for giving me additional time, I'll be picking the kids up on Tuesday and Thursday after school every week now and returning them to school Wednesday and Friday.'

Then NCP can actually do things like homework and school projects and haircuts and eh, maybe even take the kids to dr and dentist appointments (since a large share of offices are open from 8:30 to 4:30 M-F).

Unless I hear that NCP did not try for more time or was given more time but refused it, I fail to see why the CP who insisted on having the kids 25-26dys a month can't do the routine runs.

Sure, if the NCP gets 50/50 all summer long, then yes, take the kids to run kid errands during the evenly spilt summer.

nengooseus's picture

My DH has no problem being a parent to his kids, but he has a very difficult time being instructed to do things instead of being treated like a fully-participating co-parent.

Our BM doesn't want to list DH on school paperwork (even though they're 50-50 legal custody), but wants him to take care of any task she assigns him. Without complaint. She wants to instruct him to agree to take SS to see an orthodontist (at 8, when he's only lost 1 tooth and SD didn't go until she was 10), even though DH has already said no. She wants to sign the skids up for activities without DH's consent, including on his time, and then harangue him if he says no. If she doesn't like the haircut he gets a skid, there's hell to pay, too.

DH has skids about 36% of the time. He's more than willing to do his part, but he shouldn't be punished if he doesn't do exactly what she wants, how she wants it done.

And if being CP is so hard that she's becoming resentful, he is more than willing to take primary custody. But then he wouldn't be her ATM on top of it all, so that will never happen.

Tomatoe's picture

Well he should be doing haircuts and dentist appointments on his own then but he isn't so she has to tell him to.

justkeepstepping's picture

Being non-custodial and having legal custody are two separate things. So you're telling us your DH doesn't even have legal custody to his children? It usually takes quite a bit for a parent to lose or not get legal custody of a child during a divorce.

jackemmamom's picture

I'm not sure how his agreement reads, but our agreement states that we have joint custody with me having primary residential. Everything legally, however, is on both of us. He has as much right to do anything with and for the kids as I do.

nengooseus's picture

I'm so glad that you know exactly what's happening with my DH and his kids, so you can criticize what he does and doesn't do. Since you're so up on it, could you please do a better job of keeping up our calendar?

BM wants DH to schedule dental appointments during his parenting time so that she can attend them and upset the skids. And when she can't be there, she sends her husband. She likes to be in control and she likes to interrupt what quality time they have with him.

As far as haircuts go, he is more than willing to do them--I said elsewhere in this thread that he took SD recently, in fact--but because she complains about the haircuts he gets SS, he doesn't do those anymore.

Would you like to tell my DH to do anything else?

tankh21's picture

If BM made a medical appointment for the kids it is her responsibility to take them not the NCP on their time. If BM made an appointment then she can be the one to take them otherwise she needs to schedule on HER time. That is utter BS!!!

Dontfeedthetrolls's picture

It depends on what the "errands" are and how much time NCP has with the child.

Why should a parent who only gets the kid EOW be responsible for getting the kid a haircut or whatever other tiny thing that isn't time bound?

Now of course during extended times during the summer the NCP should be reasonable and do things like take the kid to an appointment or get a hair cut.

Its not that NCP's time is just for fun but in our home we get 2 days EOW to bond as a family. We don't want to give up that time running around doing things that BM is more then capable of doing while she has the kids the other 12 days. There's no reason a hair cut needs to wait till dad's time.

101Stepmom101's picture

Exactly! She wanted primary custody! She should take care of the kids when she has them. Not make them go without and purposely wait and make the kids suffer so dad has to take them. Or Make them wait suffer in cold weather until dad buys them clothes so they don't suffer or go without. But, with no job or income you better believe BIO has new winter clothes. MUST BE NICE while your kids go without. I don't know how she sleeps at night. If it was once or so I would understand. But, It's every time. Just another way to get more money out of DH

Willow2010's picture

wait wait wait!!! The bio mom does not work? Wow. And she has no time to take them for haircuts. Got it.

101Stepmom101's picture

Nope, she doesn't work. It's ALL ABOUT THE MONEY... Why spend "Child Support money" on the kids ~ when she can get their dad to pay fr more and more and more. Equals more money in HER pocket for HER.

jackemmamom's picture

This is where there's some confusion because as the CP, I also only get 2 days every other week to bond as a family because during the school year we have many more important things to do during the week than to get a haircut. I don't think it's that much to ask ex if he can take his son to get a haircut once every couple months. We are not talking every weekend he has them. Also, I have asked my ex to fix the light fixture in our son's bedroom one day when he was there picking the kids up. Would that fall under inappropriate as well? I guess I'm not seeing what the big deal is?

Peanut575's picture

It depends on a lot of factors whether it is inappropriate or not. If you and ex-h's new GF are on good terms, and she's ok with him entering your home that way, then I don't see a problem. If ex-h's new GF has an issue with it, then yes, it's inappropriate.

You and your ex are no longer together, and boundaries are important. Your ex's priority is his new partner, and your home is yours to maintain. If everyone gets along and is treated fairly by everyone else, that's obviously ideal. It's not the norm though, unfortunately.

The excuse 'it's for the kids' gets old really fast. There is no reason you can't fix the light fixture in your sons room, or have a neighbour, family member, or handy man do it. Just because your ex is your sons father, doesn't mean a fixture in your home is his responsibility anymore. It's not.

101Stepmom101's picture

EXACTLY! She has flat out said she wants nothing to do with me. She refuses to speak to me. She has never spoke to me. Which is fine with me... to a point. She also has rules that I'm not allowed at the kids events or drop them to her or drop them off to school. HECK she doesn't even want me driving them to the grocery store. Her reason to the kids? "SHE DOESN'T KNOW ME." So these poor kids have to deal with do I do things with step mom or do I obey BIO within their fathers home. They live in fear they will upset their mother and get in trouble. This makes the children upset. They don't understand why they can go places and do things with HER husband but not their fathers wife. This woman makes our lives very very difficult. She tries to control everything.

The kids don't understand other than they think their mom is over protective and crazy.

You think the mother would want to know who their children are living with. At least TRY to be friendly. FOR THE CHILDREN AT LEAST! She has texted my husband and said I know your wife will read this and then bashed our relationship and how she could tell he is not happy and he deserves better than me. I'm thinking ~ URM, how would you know? You have never spoke to me. You have no idea NOR CARE who your children live with.

But, you expect me to after being disrespected to be ok with my husband fixing crap at your home? DEAR homewrecker... Ask YOUR OWN HUSBAND TO PUT OIL IN YOUR CAR AND FIX YOUR CRAP. leave mine alone.

Simpleton21's picture

I agree with this comment also. As annoying/controlling as the BM can be the DH is allowing it. It took me a while to figure that out with my situation also. If he doesn't ignore her or put a stop to it she will continue the demands.

Willow2010's picture

He is allowing BM to control what is happening in your home. Why is that?

If he does NOT do what she says, then the BM tells the kids what a shit father he is. And he does not want that.

Catch 22 for NCP. Either he does what BM says and upsets his wife, or does NOT do what BM says and his kids are PASed against him. Terrible situation to be in.

Willow2010's picture

the BM will tell them not to make chicken for dinner because she is planning to serve chicken to them the next night. And you know what? OPs DH changed dinner plans
Oh wow. That is crazy. What a crazy loon this BM is.

hereiam's picture

BM ain't the only crazy one! Who changes what they're making for dinner because the ex says so?

Peanut575's picture

Yep, this^^ As much as I dislike the BM in my life, it's not always BM's fault. If DH wants to play the fool... then he's the fool!

Peanut575's picture

This is that whole 'negotiating with terrorists' sort of thing. I agree, it's a terrible situation to be in, but it's still DH's choice to concede to his ex's demands or not.

Also, when kids get older and start developing their own thoughts about life & family, and see BM berating BD, but not the other way around, it's not unheard of for the kids to change their minds on what actually happened growing up, especially if BD didn't cater to every whim and demand.

But I agree, that's not an easy call for a parent to make, and it's shameful that some BM's don't seem to love their kids more than they hate their exes.

strugglingSM's picture

If your ex wants to get his child a haircut on his 2 days every other week to bond with the child, then that's his choice, not your choice to dictate. The issue is that after two parents are divorced, they don't get to dictate what the other one does. It's not for the CP to decide what the NCP does on their time, just as it's not for the NCP to decide what the CP does on their time. A CP can't have it both ways, they can't decide that they want to be in control of everything, but then also complain that they have to be in control of everything. If the CP wanted full custody, then they made a choice to take on all the responsibilities that come with being a custodial parent.

To say the NCP is a bad parent or refusing to take responsibility because they won't do what the CP wants is another issue, because the CP is deciding that what they want for the child is what needs to happen. Maybe the NCP doesn't think the child needs a haircut, so should the NCP drop everything and get a haircut just because the CP thinks the kid needs one? By including a list of tasks to be completed, the CP is essentially saying that their opinion matters more, that they are the legitimate parent, and the NCP is not. By complaining when the NCP does not do the tasks that they wanted completed, the CP is essentially saying, my good-for-nothing ex, he/she doesn't care as much about the children as I do, because he/she refuses to do the things that I find necessary. This is more about the ego of the CP than what's actually right for the children. What's right for the children is letting go of control over what happens when they are with the other parent and letting them enjoy their time with that parent in peace.

And I tell my DH that all the time. As a NCP parent, he can't tell his ex wife what the kids can and can't do when they are with her. Even fighting battles over things in their CO (things that BM insisted on being in there and then violated herself) are not worth his time. It's hypocritical that she lets the kids play inappropriate video games, but making it a battle is only going to create a battle, it's not going to help her see the light. It's annoying that the kids don't do homework when they are with BM (which is all the time), but he can only do so much. She does not think that's important, so trying to convince her it is, is only bringing on a fight. He has let the kids know that it is important to him that they do their homework and he has even offered to help them do their homework, but he can't make it happen, because he's the NCP and he can't control what goes on in her house.

I think asking your ex to fix things in your home is inappropriate, even if they are the child's things that need fixing. He's not your husband anymore and not obligated to do "man tasks" for you. Would you go to his house to do your children's laundry if he asked, because you always did the laundry when you were married? Would you cook dinner for him when he has the children, because you always cooked dinner when you were married?

Dontfeedthetrolls's picture

I'm not the OP but in our home yes I'd still have an issue with her expecting SO to give up what limited time he has to try and get the kid in for a hair cut.

Both kids are under the age of 10 and BM does not work through the week. She has 5 hours every day after school for 9 days out of 10 that she can do these errands. Yes there are things from time to time that come up but a hair cut isn't time sensitive. If it can wait for NCP's time it can wait a few more days for CP to take care of it. Only one of the children is involved in any sort of extra curricular activity and it meets a max of 2 days a week.

Again if they are in his care of an extended time then fine but his time is limited enough as it is.

Now as for having him fix a light in BM's house. It depends on the relationship.

Doing favors that are appreciated is fine but I think that's what this all comes down to. This isn't BM asking for a favor. She's expecting the NCP to do things that she should and can be responsible for. She's not saying will you and thank you. She's saying do it, jump for me, ect.

strugglingSM's picture

Actually in my case, BM doesn't consider DH a parent. Despite what their CO says, she makes all decisions about education, health care, and extra curricular activities on her own. Telling DH after the fact, usually when she's demanding more money from him to pay for these things she's decided upon.

She actively tries to hide things from him, like when they get in trouble with school or don't do their school work, because she doesn't want him to tell the kids that if they can't behave or do their homework, then they won't be able to do fun things. She called him a a-hole when he told his child that if his recurrent behavior problems at school kept up, he would not be participating in sports events during his time with DH. She told both children not to tell DH when one of them punched another kid in the face. When DH asked her why she didn't tell him, she said "I took care of it and you didn't need to know."

After we discovered that neither child was handing in homework at school, DH called them every evening to work on homework over the phone with them. BM said he was "being intrusive" and that he was trying to take "her time" with the kids.

DH has also said he wants more custody time and is happy to take on more of the "burden of parenting" (as BM calls it), but is always met with rage from BM when he suggests that.

She insists that the children call her husband "Dad" and that they refer to her and her husband as "our parents." Her husband is listed as the emergency contact for the children at the school and some teachers won't even share information with DH without consulting with BM first.

I think given all that, BM's made it clear that she does see DH as a full parent and therefore, she's forfeited all rights to demand that he do "parenting" tasks like haircuts, dentist appointments, clothes shopping on the 4 days a month that he sees the kids.

Disneyfan's picture

The glasses thing may be nothing more than mom's desire to share the parenting responsibilities which is reasonable. The same with the haircuts. Being a NCP shouldn't mean you are excused from the parenting stuff.

The GC SHOULD be presented as a heads up type thing(not a demand). "Hey, the kids have GCs that are about to expire." That way if you all are out and about, the kids could use the GCs instead of dad ending money.

101Stepmom101's picture

I think being a "responsible" parent would be taking the kids right away to have their glasses adjusted/fixed when needed. And taking the kids when they NEED hair cuts and not purposely putting it off until dad can take them so BIO doesn't have to spend her money (AKA child support) on them or her gas money or time to take care of things that should be take care of right away for the children.

sunshinex's picture

But wait... Do you have kids and work full-time? lol I know myself and my husband both struggle to get everything done all the time. Often, working full-time and running a household and taking care of a child makes it a bit difficult to get to the haircuts or checkups at the dentist right when they're needed. Sometimes they get put off until one of us remembers. Hell, my cat needs to be fixed but it's been on a list of errands to run because we haven't had a chance. It's not easy.

NCP has it a lot easier, to be honest... and sometimes, it's nice to be able to defer things until the one who's got a lot less on their schedule because they're not taking care of a child full-time can do it.

strugglingSM's picture

Where I object to that is that in my case, BM (the custodial parent) loves to dictate how and when DH (the NCP) can see the children. When he called during the week he was "being intrusive". When he wanted to drive down to talk to one SS about emails from a teacher about recurring behavior problems, he was told that he would be violating the CO if he did that because he could not see the children on "her time" without her permission.

NCPs may have fewer errands to run, but see their children infrequently (often not by choice), so I'm not sure that's "having it easier". If a NCP only sees a child 4 days out of the month, should they really be expected to spend that time running errands for the custodial parent?

If the CP wants to unload some tasks, perhaps they should also be willing to give up some of their time with the children. If being a custodial parent is so overwhelming, maybe they should consider joint custody.

DH has told BM several times that he wants to discuss joint custody or him taking on more parenting time and every time, she has a huge fit and usually engages in a behind the scenes propaganda war by telling the kids "Dad is trying to take you away from me."

In my mind, since she's so intent on maintaining full custody, she needs to take on the responsibilities that come with that, including managing all the errands that come along with being a parent.

hereiam's picture


strugglingSM's picture

We're in the same boat, too. BM makes twice what DH makes, but still can't make ends meet without his check. She used to demand that he give it to her early. Now we just have it sent automatically from the bank.

It's also a control issue for BM, too, though. She wants to control everything her children do and if she could, she would still like to control everything DH does, even on his time without the kids.

jackemmamom's picture

I understand you have a different situation than I do and I'm happy that things aren't this difficult with my co-parenting, but I don't understand why it comes across as too overwhelming to get things done for the kids so the CP should just give up time to the NCP. I am a single parent, my ex is not (live-in girlfriend). I agreed to a minimum amount of child support for 2 kids as my ex is self-employed and the income is not steady. The courts awarded me $823 per month for 2 children and ex and I agreed to $400 per month. It's not like I'm getting rich off the child support. I pay $200.00 per month for tutoring (I have never asked him to pay half) and buy all school clothes, fill their lunch accounts, cook all dinners, keep a roof over their head, etc. by myself. Not to be difficult but, yes, ex can get his dang kid's hair cut if he needs it. That's one thing I don't mind asking him to do. I think both parents need to parent the children, and that includes doctor visits, teacher meetings, haircuts, etc.

Peanut575's picture

I think there's also a difference if you're asking respectfully instead of dictating. Our BM likes to say things like 'you WILL do this, and you WILL do that'. Umm... nope, we won't. Had she said 'hey, I've had a tough/busy week & they boys really need haircuts, do you mind taking them this weekend?' I can't see us making an issue out of that.

One is respectful and wilco, the other is controlling and abrasive.

Things seem to be pretty tough for you on the finances front, and I agree that both parents should be responsible for their kids. I don't blame you for feeling the way you do, I likely would too. A lot of us here though deal with BM's who are always demanding more, never have enough, and are constantly meddling or PAS'ing their bios against the NCP. It's a tough gig.

The ideal situation, and I know the situation we ALL wish we were in, would be for bios and steps to all be able to work together in a mature way for the sake of the kids, and also our own sanity. I wish it was a more common experience!!

Tomatoe's picture

Why wasn't dad responsible wno5ugh to get that done before bm told him it needed done? He has 36% custody which means he notices when hair gets long and he should know their dental schedule.

Simpleton21's picture

Why isn't BM responsible enough to get it done when it needed done when she isn't working and has the kid 64% of the time and she is receiving CS to take care of the things b/c the "lazy, not responsible enough dad" is working?!?!

justkeepstepping's picture

I don't see any of the "errands" mentioned as a big deal. They are not errands. They are normal thing all parents do with their children.

"How do I get my husband to realize her motives with these things. Or am I just overthinking this?"

You are overthinking this. IMO you always seem jealous of BM for some reason. It seems to me that your DH and BM are co-parenting well. You are the only one that has a problem with any of it.

If I remember correctly you were complaining a few months ago b/c skid needed their hair cut and BM wanted to pick her up and take them herself during you DH's time. Your DH had no problem with it, but you did.

Another time you wanted your DH to get rid of anything BM had ever given him in the house. If I remember correctly it was things he has entire collections of and you wanted anything in the collection related to BM gone. DH didn't want them gone, but you did.

Aniki's picture

Justkeepstepping, I think it's more that BM is DEMANDING things and trying to exert control over OP's DH rather than simply saying, "Hey, Mr. 101, Skidly has a gift certificate that's about to expire. Would you be able to take Skidly to the bookstore this weekend?".

You know... ask instead of DEMAND.

Aniki's picture

JKS, that may be true. I'm only saying that you catch more flies with honey (ASKING) than vinegar (DEMANDING). Smile

101Stepmom101's picture

She does not work. Her only income is child support and her tax return ~ she gets lots of government help because she has tons of kids with multiple fathers.

We both work full time and I have child from another marriage. So yes, I am a custodial mother and I work full time. I don't expect or give my ex a "Honey Due List" for our child. I take care of things that need to be done when they need to be done.

Disneyfan's picture

You take care of all the parenting stuff. BM shares the responsible.

Neither one of you are right or wrong.

Your ex is fine with you doing it all.
Your husband is fine with BM including him in the mundane parenting stuff.

Aniki's picture

Yes, this is definitely a control thing. Your DH should shut this down ASAP. "We have a full schedule this weekend and won't have time to fit *whatever* in."

101Stepmom101's picture

I agree. But, he doesn't like to say "no" to her because she flat out tells him you don't love your kids if you don't. He just takes it from her. She uses him as a bunching bag if he doesn't do what she wants. She will say these mean nasty things about him and to him with the kids in the car even. So they hear "daddy doesn't care of love me" because he won't do what mommy asks. It's all sad. These poor kids.

Tomatoe's picture

I would just tell the kid daddy is to lazy to parent since apparently getting a haircut for his kids is to demanding of him.

Disneyfan's picture

It doesn't matter that she doesn't work. Both of them created those kids, so they are both responsible for doing parenting task.

Truth be told, she shouldn't have to ASK or DEMAND that he do anything. He should be doing some of those things simply because he is their father and they need to be done.

Simpleton21's picture

Yes, they are both responsible for the parenting task meaning BM shouldn't be telling him what to do on his time. He is a responsible dad (I assume since he works and pays CS and has time with his kid) and doesn't need her input on how to spend his time with his child. If he sees the kid needs a haircut and wants to take care of it he can. I'm sure he doesn't make appointments for the kid during BM's time and tell her she has to take the kid to the appointment he scheduled. That is controlling and most of us realize that. BM trying to dictate his time is basically her saying he isn't responsible and so she has to tell him what to do or he won't do it.

Simpleton21's picture

Yeah, telling the kid that daddy is lazy is great parenting, always a great idea to bad mouth the child's parent in front of them! Stellar advice!

Aniki's picture

Unfortunately, your DH is ALLOWING BM to emotionally blackmail him and use him as a punching bag. Sounds like she is also attempting to PAS the skids to get her way.

Your DH does NOT have to comply. Nor does he have to argue. Let BM blather on with her list of demands. Say "Okay" or "I see" and let it go. If some things can be accomplished during DH's weekend: fine. If not: there wasn't time.

DH should not try to argue with BM in front of the skids. It's what she wants so she can pull the "daddy doesn't looooove you" caca.

emma5678's picture

I think it totally depends on both parents situations, how old the child is (are they in school or daycare?). Each situation is different. I think it also depends on if the other parent is asking or demanding, and how often they ask.. Every weekend? definitely not. Once in a while? sure.

If the kid is school-aged or day care, then I think it comes down to how much "free time" the kid has with each parent, as a percentage of total time with the kid while not sleeping/at school.

If BM is asking him to spend half his time running errands, when she only spends 10% of her time running errands for the kids, then is is a power play. If the kid has that much going on that she is spending half her time (while kids aren't in school/daycare), then it is more reasonable to ask BD do no more (but not demand he do it).

SugarSpice's picture

part of parenting is "errands" such as dental appointments, shopping for clothing and such.

its not all disney dad with the father taking the skids somewhere fun and showering them with gifts and cash.

on the other hand bm may be trying to control the dh time with the children.

dh should see that his time with his own children is not all errands.

dh was really jerked about with visitation so he did not get to see the skids often. when the skids were infants dh was so happy to get the children that he even saw changing nappies as a wonderfully fun activity and not the horrid chore that it is.

if he had custody of the skids or was still married to bm hed see the task as truly unpleasant fact of life for parenthood.

lieutenant_dad's picture

Errands can totally be used as a form of control and to acquire "indirect" CS.

BM is great at making things a crisis. It will be November and BM will tell DH that the boys don't have winter coats the weekend before the temperature is supposed to drop. She'll send YSS over without underwear because he doesn't have any more and forces DH to go buy more. She'll send the boys over with lists of school supplies they need by Monday - and never mention that they have had weeks to get materials.

Do I think DH shouldn't have to take the kids out to get things they need? No, but he pays nearly $1,000 a month in CS and buys every haircut, stitch of clothing, and school supply in addition to CS because it is always presented as an emergent need on SS weekends.

It's always DH unspoken responsibility to get the kids their needs while also paying CS and while also not getting any more time. The one time DH asked for a week with them (he only gets EOWE - no additional time in the summers), BM kept asking for him to keep them fewer and fewer days. Hell, DH will go to fundraisers with them and BM will pit the kids between her and GBM or SF, so DH doesn't even get to really interact with them when the only reason he went was to interact.

So, again, they can be used as a form of control and a way to save their own money. That's not always the case, but when it becomes a pattern, it's pretty clear that's the intent.

blueskies4me's picture

Bioho has no right to dictate what biodad does during his parenting time. He needs to tell the ho NO and stick to it!

Goodluck's picture

Offer to take over all haircuts and everything else custodial cant handle. They have a lot more time than non custodial.

No parent has can micro manage the other parents visitation time. Unless non custodial allows it. YES I am calling custodial parents time visitation.

Sounds like time for 50 50 equal split custody.