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Newbie here, strained relationship with stepkids

KrackedKatt's picture

Hello fellow stepparents, I came across your site while google searching. Things about me Im 39, My SO is 36 and his has 4 kids SD13, SD11, SS9 & SD5. We have been together for 3 years and living together for just over 2 years. Now my parents ex wife is a walking nightmare to the point ive had mental breakdowns from dealing with her garbage. When I met my SO his ex wife kicked him out cause she grew tired of him and took everything but the clothes on his back. We waited for 6 months of us dating till I met the kids and he moved in a few months afterwards into my house cause I live super close to his work (he was sick of commuting for 2 hours each day). Cause he was left in an eyewatering amount of debt by his ex wifes shopping addiction and her loans under his name he didnt have much so I decorated the SKs rooms, new beds, bedding etc to feel welcome cause my SO had nothing when he moved in and neither did the kids, built them computers, gave them my xbox etc. The SKs didnt hate me at first and tolerated me, always thanked me for things and presents I bought them, enjoyed the food I cooked (SD 13 always says dad cant cook to save his life and loves the food here). Things were civil with the SKs, Ive since become very close to SD13 to the point she and her friends say "Im really cool" cause of one of my jobs (Im a cooking streamer) I adore her, she is a great young woman. Anyways after a very, very bitter legal battle so we could get a set custody schedule and every 2nd xmas plus a fair child support payment cause she was getting overpaid by 50% plus the original agreement was basically "I demand what I want and you give no questions asked". Now court was a fair deal for both parties in regards to custody (65 for her/35 for us) and child support (calculated government rate plus half of medical/dental expenses). Now BM was bat shit crazy before we lawyed up with her crazy rules like I cant give the SKs anything I cook, they cant talk to me, anything I buy them for gifts gets thrown in the bin if they bring stuff back to hers etc etc. Lately BM has been spreading lies and rumours about my SO (when she didnt get her demands in court met, she cried about being a battered wife and rape victim) and went on a full blown attack on me saying Im a homewrecker and gold digger (oh silly woman you cant dig for gold when there is nothing to dig). For the record my SO was living on his own seperated and just had divorce papers signed after she kicked him out. Plus she says I dont work (I have 2 jobs) and spend all of my SOs money on myself while she and her kids live in poverty (she is terrible with money and a compulsive shopper buying herself everything she desires on credit card, loan schemes etc and refuses to get a job so she lives on goverment benefits). So now when the SKs ask BM for thing like a computer, toys, outings etc etc her words are always "dads cheap whore spends all his money and we have to go without cause he is a bad father" and "Dads bitch broke up our family clan. SD13 doesnt believe the words of her mother but the other 3 SKs have gone full mental on me. The verbal abuse, always blaming me, calling me names, saying I stole their dad etc. Its come to the point I dont say much and avoid those 3 cause Im just over the hate in my own house. It sucks cause ive gone without to help make them comfortable here, cook them food they like, made bday cakes, buy xmas and bday gifts etc. All I do is give, give, give and ive now hit breaking point. I would love to stop buying them gifts for bdays etc not make their fav foods but then Im branded the cruel heartless woman. My SO says to me "one outta four is better than none". SO keeps telling them over and over the truth but they loyalty keeps with BMs words. I am grateful for SD13s friendship as she is the only reason to look forward to when the SKs come over. Also ive never asked the SKs to call me stepmum etc and I dont do any of the parenting. I just tried to be a friend and now I think its impossible. I love my SO and SD13 but somedays I miss a life without constant drama week to week

Sorry for the long post, all my words just came pouring out.

Winterglow's picture
  • I do hope he disciplines them for their appalling behaviour and lack of respect.
  • Do not ever go out of your way for them again. No treats, no toys, no new clothes. Why bother? They don't appreciate it.
  • I'm glad the eldest is a good kid.

KrackedKatt's picture

Oh their dad punishes them for there rude behaviour but its like an uphill battle cause its the same merry go round of crap. They be little assholes to me, he punishes their behavour, SKs get mad at him too and BM keeps feeding the fire with her venom. SO is tired of all the crap himself and feels powerless. Im going to try and have a "no more fucks to give" attitude towards the hateful three SKs but Im still going to want to treat SD13 to things Im just worried more hate will spew out cause I then do only nice things for SD13, but she deserves it for treating me like a person

ESMOD's picture

"When I met my SO his ex wife kicked him out cause she grew tired of him and took everything but the clothes on his back. "

I am a little unclear of the timing here. .did he get kicked out after he met you? or did he get kicked out and you met him after that?

Obviously, the former gives a little more weight to them thinking that you had something to do with their parent's split.  But, honestly, thier dad should be able to be clear that the end of his relationship with their mother was related to a lot of issues that while none of their business (adult topics).. isn't due to you and he expects them to treat you respectfully in the home.

I know it is hurtful when you have gone out of your way for these kids.  But, I also think you gave your BF a lot of credit when you believed every claim of his.. hook, line & sinker.  Perhaps she was exactly as he presents.. but the truth probably includes some not so steller acts and behaviors on HIS part to.

That being said.. a guy with 4 kids.. yikes.. that is a huge bite of food to chew in one swallow.. It's a red flag.. that he blamed all the problems on his ex.. is kindof a red flag as well... the fact that he isn't supporting you in all of this? red flag again.

I would be doing some real soul searching on whether this relationship truly is right for you.

KrackedKatt's picture

Sorry for the confusion, it was a long post I was typing at 1.30am in the morning. I met my SO after he got kicked out when she grew tired of him, he had been seperated for 13 months, living by himself and just had divorce papers signed when we met. I am not a homewrecker

ndc's picture

Do nothing for the 3 ingrate terrorists. Do for the SD13 who appreciates you and treats you well. Since it sounds like neither of their parents can afford to do much for them,  the younger 3 will soon feel the results of their actions. Their dad may want to reexamine the consequences he's using, also, as they don't seem effective. 

advice.only2's picture

Sounds like your SO is a victim by his own making. Does he discipline his kids? He should be the one buying his kids presents and making them dinner...if he's too broke or incapable of doing it, then he needs to learn to save up and learn to cook. At this point all it sounds like is you are this guys gravy train who keeps saving him from his own stupidity.

KrackedKatt's picture

He buys his kids stuff, I just helped set up the house for the SKs when they moved in with their rooms etc and buy bday gifts and xmas gifts and he does that too. (Stuff from both of us on those celebrations) He works long hours to try to pay off the mountain of debt BM left him and the loan he took out for legal costs

AgedOut's picture

or law that says you have to do things for those who poop all over you. make plans, do things, enjoy the ones who treat you kindly and if called on it say why. you do not have to bend over to get kicked in the teeth. They start with the mouth, walk away. they act like human butts, don't involve them in things you do for the one who is decent to you. stop cooking for them if they don't ppreciate you, don't buy for them, don't waste your effort. but give your relationship some serious thought because this may be a forever situation w/ them and it would take super tough skin if they're assaulting you with words constantly. 

MaryBethC's picture

I'm worried about your SD13. I've seen so many times SP think their SK is on their side when in fact they are just playing nice to get rewards all the while hating and scheming behind your back.

Harry's picture

Let DH handle them 100%. You spend no time or money on SK.  No gifts, no vacations, No trips. No cooking. Let the bad. Cook do there food 

Wicked stepmo.'s picture

When I met SKs, BM wasn't in the picture. She couldn't parent and date at the same time. SDs and I developed a very good relationship. Don't get me wrong they had  behavior issues, but they always wanted to go places with me and spend time with me and would respond really well when redirected. They were respectful towards me.

After about 6 months BM decided she didn't like SKs having a relationship with me. BM started by suddenly insisting on her scheduled visitation. She then started working on OSD. Everything from buying her inappropriate clothes she knew she was not allowed to wear at my house, getting her and iphone and so on. As OSD began her teenage rebellion BM took advantage by picking up OSD everytime she didn't like consequences for breaking the rules. Telling her that rules and consequences were forms of abuse.

After causing disruption and chaos in my home OSD PASd out.

Then BM began to work on YSD punishing and shaming her for having a relationship with me. Paying her to not follow the rules at my house. YSD finally caved after BM had her choose either BM or SM she can't have both. BM then abandoned YSD and placed conditions on Thier relationship. 

YSD has hated me every since, because it's my fault she can't see BM. She wishes I would die and never existed. 

I can tell you I have been disengaged since the beginning, but it doesn't matter. I can maintain my sanity. But don't enjoy being around or near them at all. 

Gimlet's picture

I would love to stop buying them gifts for bdays etc not make their fav foods but then Im branded the cruel heartless woman

So stop.  You are damned if you do, and damed if you don't.  If you want to buy something for SD13, do it, but I would make sure their father tells the other kids that they cannot expect anything from someone they treat so poorly.

SO is tired of all the crap himself and feels powerless

This is not a good sign.  As a matter of fact, he is the ONLY person in your household with the power to do something about this.  HE chose to marry this woman, HE chose to have 4 kids with her.  HE needs to push back on them every. single. time. they mistreat you.  IDGAF if he's "tired" this is his problem.

My SO says to me "one outta four is better than none"

That is dismissive of the problem that 3/4 of HIS kids are making you miserable in YOUR own home.

I am not saying to end it, but you need to take a hard look at this situation.  Your SO moved in partially  because he was "sick of" his commute, and brought his 4 kids with him.  You funded their move basically, by buying everything that was needed for his kids and the return you have is his low rent ex insulting you constantly and 3 bitter kids living with you a third of your life.

You've provided one hell of a rescue for this man and he either owes you a peaceful home, or he should find a place for him and his kids and continue to date you.  If he "can't afford it", well then I would question some of his motivation and ability to provide for himself and his kids without you.  He sounds like a project to me.

What steps has he taken to get his kids some help?  How does he address the issues in your home?