You are here

Mine vs his

Dc3sc2's picture

Lots of issues and a bit ranty sorry in advance. 
My recently 10 year old daughter said my dh treats her a little bit like Cinderella. If she leaves a mess she gets told to clean it up which I agree with 100% but she went on to say he doesn't tell his own kids to clean up their mess. My dd and sd12 share a bedroom and my dd has to clean up her stuff every day while sd12s stuff has been all over for a good 6 months at least. I told my dd not to clean it. Over the weekend I noticed more. My kids went to their dads which they do eow and we have his every weekend so sd12 came on Friday and left an empty can on the kitchen table (mine would have been told to move it Friday) Sunday morning rolls round and there are 2 cans a hair scrunchie her breakfast stuff and sweet wrappers all over the kitchen table (he still hasn't told her to clean it) so I clean the kitchen leaving both of their messes for them and eventually they do clean it up.  

My 2nd issue is eating itself. Sd12 makes so much mess while eating it's literally everywhere all over the table and all over the floor. She's 12 ffs my 8 year old has better table manners than that. Sd9 barely eats anything at all but when she does like her sister she won't use cutlery the correct way if she uses cutlery at all. They both chew with their mouths wide open like cattle. It's not so much they have issues with table manners it's that dh doesn't say anything to them but when it's mine chewing with their mouth open (eldest who's disabled does sometimes) they get told straight away by Dh. 

My 3rd issue is they're always eating sweets. Like 10minutes before dinner sd12 has got a big pack of star burst. She never asks before she eats sweets she just eats them. Mine always have to ask and get very few in comparison. Dh would say no to mine eating sweets just before dinner but because she doesn't ask she gets to eat as many as she likes. Sd9 brought a carrier bag full of sweets over 2 weeks ago and was none stop munching on them. But nothing ever gets said to them. 
My fourth issue is hygiene mine are constantly told by dh to get bathed brush their teeth put deodorant on etc but his never get told to. He will tell mine to go to bed at a reasonable time but not his own which leads me onto my next and final issue. 

My final issue is my children are more work I will concede that. They are more sociable, want to interact with the adults in the home more and do things together. They like spending time with me and like spending time with dh so are usually asking if we can do something together. "Mummy will you please colour with me?" "Mummy can we get snuggled and watch a film together?" Etc I understand they are more effort than his who sit in their rooms the whole time they're here playing on electronics. On Friday they came, an hour after mine had gone to their dads sd9 emerges from her pit "have dc3s kids gone to their dads?" "Yes" then she goes upstairs to ring her mum to ask if she can go home in the morning. Sd12 stayed in her pit only emerging for food. I'm not an expert on children by no means but I find this completely unhealthy. They don't want to spend any time with their dad. I try spend more time in my bedroom and away from them so they can spend time together, watching cr*p on my phone or doing face masks, showering, organising my closet which I usually leave all clothes to put away at weekend especially if it's the week they are here and my bios aren't. I think this leads to him thinking his kids are perfect and can entertain themselves, we don't even know we have them etc. Which is 100% true but also really sad. 
I know a lot of people will say I can't care more than the parents and I don't think I do care all that much my bigger issue is that his parenting to my children is 100x better than his parenting of his own children. Not that my kids see it this way obviously and that's the issue I have. 
What would you do in this situation? 

Wicked stepmo.'s picture

My SO did the same thing with my kids and it irritated me to no end. I don't care of he doesn't want to parent his kids. That's fine. But you don't get to parent mine. I made it clear to him that if there was an issue with anything mine did he was not allowed to address it. He can say something to me and if I think it's important I will handle it. 

I have raised my kids all these years just fine, He has enough problems with his own and that's where his focus should be. 

Dc3sc2's picture

For the reply. How did you broach the subject? I have certain expectations of my own children so if he didn't say it I would anyway. That's what I told my daughter when she said she felt a bit like Cinderella that dh knows my expectations also says the things he knows I will say 

Wicked stepmo.'s picture

I was brutally honest. I said he has enough to worry about with his own kids that he doesn't need to worry about mine. If he has an issue with something they do or don't do he can bring it to my attention.

I told him that his constant nagging was hurting his relationship with them and that I would prefer he focus on teaching them things versus nagging. You want to teach them a new skill great!! But refrain from pointing out everything they do wrong. I don't do it to your kids I don't expect you to do it with mine 

In my situation SO was doing it to distract himself from his own issues. Let me focus on the easy compliant kids, versus my own kids who mouth off to me if I say anything to them. I wasn't having it. I even videotaped him and showed the counselor because he lived in denial of his own behavior and how irritating it was for my kids.

I always address any concerns I have regarding his kids with him and usually ignore 90% of it because if that's how he wants to raise his kids so be it. 

Dc3sc2's picture

They're not bad kids tbh. They wouldnt mouth off etc I think it's just guilt parenting. They're only here at the weekend they shouldn't have to clean up on a weekend or my personal favourite they don't make as much mess as yours (because they stick it all in a bag when it's time to go back to their mums) I think being straight with him might work. 

lieutenant_dad's picture

"DH, I've noticed a huge difference between how you parent my kids versus how you parent your own. While I appreciate the help, I'd prefer if you put the same effort into your own kids. SD hasn't showered in 3 days, she has left 2 cans on the kitchen table for 2 days, hasn't done her laundry in over a week, etc. Please start enforcing the same rules on your kids as you do mine."

Hopefully you giving examples and time frames pushes him to handle it on his own and pay more attention. If it doesn't:

"DH, do not parent my children anymore. If they don't do something, bring it to my attention and I'll decide how to handle it, which is the same courtesy that I'll give you. I don't appreciate you making my children feel like they are constantly doing something wrong while you let your children get away with the behaviors you correct in mine. Focus on your children and I'll focus on mine."

Any conversation you have needs to be focused on his bad parenting, not his kids being lazy. The laziness is a byproduct of the bad parenting. It's him not enforcing hygeine standards. It's him not forcing them to clean up their rooms. It's him not having taught them table manners. If he tries to guilt trip you by saying "you just think I'm a crappy parent", respond "yes, I do, and I hope you'll do better."

Dc3sc2's picture

I really like this answer so thank you for the advice. I'd prefer not to start an argument if at all possible I'm non confrontational as a rule. But saying it and giving examples of the divide might help him see. 

lieutenant_dad's picture

Be mindful in being non-confrontational. Most people don't like conflict, but don't use it as a crutch to avoid having conversations that need to happen. Growth and change is painful work. Don't trick yourself and don't let others take advantage of your non-confrontational side. There is a problem, it needs to be addressed, and it's probably going to hurt. But, you're already in discomfort, so rip the bandaid off so the long-term discomfort can end. If your concern is that your marriage will end or be severely damaged by bringing this up, then there are deeper problems than which kids are eating sweets when they shouldn't be.

Movingonisbest's picture

If I were you, I would address this issue with your DH earlier rather than later. As you may know from reading the message board , this problem doesn't go away as the kids age. If it did.there wouldn't be a whole separate forum on the message board for people with adult stepkids. 

How long has thisproblem been going on? How long have you and DH been together? Was their a discussion about how the kids would be parented  had earlier in the relationship and definitely prior to marriage?

Discussing how kids will be parented early on and making sure the partners are on the same page is extremely important imho. While it doesn't guarantee things will go smoothly, it does set a standard that the partners agreed to and are expected to follow.

Dc3sc2's picture

We had the convo and I thought we agreed rules but seems we just agreed rules for my kids and not for his like screen time I monitor my kids screen time we agreed 2 hours on a weekend and mine get 2 hours his get 18hours etc. I honestly think it's less lazy parenting and more guilt parenting. I don't see them that much so I need to make it all lovely. Sd12 wants to move in with us (of course because she doesn't have any responsibilities) told him if she did she would have shock of her life because then he would be at work and I would be in charge. There would be non of this days off school for a stomach ache laying in bed until after lunch etc. 

tog redux's picture

Tell your DH to quit telling your kids to do anything - he should come to you if he is bothered by something they do. 

I will say - a balance between hanging out in your room all weekend and wanting your parent to entertain you is the most healthy for kids. 

Dc3sc2's picture

Yeh I think it's best we do divide like that. Just to clarify they're not always asking for attention and play on their own most of the time but they also try spend time with the adults. They spend more time in communal areas than his children (kitchen mainly) colouring, drawing, playing board games doing jigsaws etc. So think I'm just used to children being more around than sat in a bedroom on their own. 

SeeYouNever's picture

My husband is similar. He thinks it's a good thing that SD can entertain herself but really all she's doing is playing on her phone or watching TV. on one hand it's nice that she's out of our hair but on the other hand she's basically a lazy little slug. Kids are work and if you put more work into them they come out better. Whenever I'm getting tired of trying to be a perfect parent I try to remind myself that everything is for a purpose. I'm doing all these things and interacting with my kids because I want them to be smart secure and effective adults. SD is a lazy spoiled brat and she's going to turn into somebody's lazy entitled wife. It really sucks when there's a disparity in discipline and cleanliness between the kids but ultimately you have to let go. If the step kids aren't cleaning up after themselves then your DH has to do it. 



Rags's picture

Are you an adult in this relationship?  If so, enforce the same rules for all kids in the home.

If your DH does not have the parental quality or the balls to do it, you do it.

Do not allow your progeny worshipping ball-kess husband to apply lower standards of behavior and performance for his kids than are required of  yours.  Of course, do not lower the standards you hold your kids to.

If he and his progeny protest, point them all to the door.

Dc3sc2's picture

I have disengaged completely when it comes to his kids. If he can't be bothered with them why should I got enough with my own 3. I won't spend time with them at all I won't discipline them etc because I am not their parent it's up to him to deal with his own children not all up to me. 

Dc3sc2's picture

I just want to add that it's not just discipline and that's it he also interacts more with my children talks to them/plays with them/takes them places (before lockdown) he makes more of an effort all round with mine than he does with his own.