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Normal or hurtful?

NoraMarie's picture

My husband (Sam)has been divorced 8 years. That marriage resulted in a son who's 9 (Jake). I also have a son who's 12 (Matt) and then together we have a 4 year old daughter(Sarah). My husbands ex wife (Jess) is remarried with a step son (Nate) who's 7 and a new baby(Lucy). Jess has daily contact with my inlaws. Recently she visited our city and brought along her husband step son new daughter as well as new mother in law and sister in law. They all stayed with my mother in law! After a few days the group relocated to my father in laws house. She then had family pictures done professionally. Some with herself her husband and 3 kids, and some with my in laws! None with her new mother in law. My in laws do not have pictures of my kids on display. Not even my daughter who is their biological grand child. But they have pics of the ex wifes new family. They openly claim her new daughter and step son as there grandkids. Is this normal? Please share opinions with me.

qtpie013178's picture

Well, the whole multiple family thing is not normal. Marriage was meant to be a lifelong commitment, when it is, most of the drama is avoided. That said, I have 4 kids: 13yo BD, 13 yo SS, 2 yo BD and one on the way.

I was the second BM in a line of three, and my ex-in-laws are good to me and my daughter. Christmas and familiy get togethers were always my daughter's holiday tradition, so why take her from her grandparents? My ex and I were over years ago, and I have no problem seeing them, they claim my kids with my new husband as theirs out of love for my daughter.

It is uncommon to maintain good relations, but it is best for the children, and is fine as long as your husband and his ex and not still pining for each other. If the ex reaches out to befriend you, and acknowledges your new children together, most like she is over him.

It seems that you are more jealous that your in-laws seem to like the BM better. Let me ask you, do you go out of your way to cultivate a good relationship with youre in-laws and your stepchildren?

It may be that they do not feel comfortable with you. I would ask about the pictures, and give them a nice few to display, and see if they do. Beyond that, just be loving to your family and pray on it, the situation may just resolve itsef.

NoraMarie's picture

A little more info. I have been active in my SS's life since he was 3. I initially tried to have a relationship with the ex wife, she disliked me from day one. Has called the police on me for something that she made up. And made up lies about me to soil my inlaws image of me. Even resulting in my husband and I seperating for awhile. Which is exactly what she wants. Its not a matter of jealousy, I feel its a matter of boundries. For instance I don't want my kids knowing there dads ex wife as auntie and her kids as cousins. That to me is weird and uncomfortable.

NoraMarie's picture

no, no pictures with the new in laws. But also the new in laws are not wealthy....catch my drift

cnd62107's picture

i would be completely uncomfortable with all of it and if any of my FH's family told any of my kids to refer to BM as ANYTHING but "sd7's mom" i would flip out totally! that woman is nothing to me or my future kids. my fh's grandparents are constantly fawning over bm's new baby with her new husband and it makes me sick. i get it, babies are cute and you're gonna awww any baby. but that baby is NOTHING to any of them as far as familial relationship i really don't see why they need to sit there and get in conversations with BM about what illness the baby is getting over now, and the foods the baby eats, and the developmental progress and blah blah. i hate it and i don't think you're wrong for being hurt by it. in my personal opinion when boundaries are not set between the families after a divorce it's just completely innappropriate. BM is no longer a part of FH's family no matter how much she wishes she was. she gave that up. they're MY family-in-law now and she needs to back off! if the in-laws in your situation can't offer you more respect than what you're describing, i would have nothing to do with them and neither would my children if some kids who aren't related to them AT ALL are so much more important to bond with.

NoraMarie's picture

Thank you for taking the time out to respond guys. I have to say its nothing against the exwife. I don't have hard feelings for her dispite the hurtful things she's done to me. I just don't want to know my husbands ex as my sister. I don't want to share holidays with her ect. Its just not normal to my standards and it invaids my comfort zone and boundries. Most importantly it conflicts with the way I want my children to be raised.

Denys's picture

I feel in the same way you do. My fiance and his family cannot understand how I feel. When I told them that I didn't want to participate in events where shes going to be then his mom and him said ok fine that is your decision. She says that shes not going anywhere because of her kid and that they want to show him that they have a good relationship. Am I wrong if I don't want the ex wife in the events or Im being selfish and not thinking about their kid?

Mariana79's picture

My husband's ex also sends Christmas cards with SS8 and her new kid on it. I have found those pictures at MIL and BIL's refrigerator. It hurt me initially, as I think it is yet another manipulative tactic from the ex. She still tries to remain friends with everyone, especially after she found out we were getting married (can you say control freak?) and even after SHE was the one that cheated.
After her latest antics (harassing my DH for more money, long story), DH finally asked the entire family to minimize contact with her and delete her from facebook. Hopefully they do realize now what kind of person she is, but she can be very manipulative and I don't doubt that she will contact them.

unbelieveable's picture

I just feel like everyone is going insane. These people are crazy. None of this is normal. Anyone who agrees that it is okay is guilty of sending those freaking cards. Move on and get your own new family. I am with cnd62107 and anyone else that agrees. I'll be damned if I am second to someone who has been DIVORCED from my DH. Her new family has nothing to do with Dh's family...and the SD's understand that completely - and no their new baby brother their mom had to some guy she is no longer with will NOT be adopted into this family. Do you throw your kids in your exhubby's woman's face? I completely am into being civil...however - your kids with your husband are your business. I could rant forever about this.

NCMilGal's picture

My BM won't give my MIL any pictures of SD15 by herself. All MIL gets is group family photos of SD15, BM (who MIL loathes) BM's DH, and SD15's half-brother. MIL gets frustrated with this - she just wants pictures of her grandchild!

That reminds me, we need to get some pictures done; it's been more than three years, and we just found out that BM threw out SD15's copy of the last set we got.

NoraMarie's picture

In regard to unbelieveables post. I agree about being civil with ex family members. But have boundries. They are not invited to holiday gatherings and they are not included in family pictures anymore. Ofcourse their children who are blood related family members will be included always, but not the ex spouse let alone the ex spouses new family. And no they shouldn't be invited on family trips either. If I invited my brothers ex wife to a family event my brother would be outraged. And for good reason too

NoraMarie's picture

My MIL thinks that my requesting ex wife not be involved in our family is disrespectful to the child born into that marriage. But that is not my motive AT ALL!

NoraMarie's picture

I'm fine with my SS9 having pictures of his other family in his room. He stays with us all summer and I take care of him as if he is my bio child. My family includes him with open arms. I even document his summer with photos of himself to give to his mom at the end of the summer so she doesn't feel sad about missing his summer. I try to be thoughtful of her as his mother the same as I would if I was in her place. Even though she continues to bad mouth me.

Mariana79's picture

Nora Marie - I used to do that with the ex wife too. Used to keep her on the loop, but she showed her true colors to me and I backed away.

donna123's picture

How your in laws are treating you is very common behaviour of hostile, small-minded people who will excuse their ill behaviour by saying you brought it on yourself.

There is no chance your MIL should be having daily contact with an ex wife. What for? Is the woman insane or just your ordinary run of mill old lady pot stirrer? That is a serious invasion of what should be your place in the family and of course the ex loves sticking it to you laughing about how they like her better than you. As if it has anything whatsoever to do with liking you.

Any person who maliciously files a false police report and gossips into your DH’s family about you is an immoral, base person not to be trusted by anyone. Myself, I would give clear berth to a person of such low character.

How does your husband feel about all this? Is his loyalty with you? Or is he controlled by his mother? What is the motivating factor—money, inheritance? Bottom line is he is the one who has to put a stop to this.

There is nothing normal about this behaviour although it is quite common especially if the inlaws don’t approve of divorce and/or see the ex as an innocent victim. They are trying to drive a wedge in your marriage. And, yes that is hurtful.

roseslady2's picture

I think at first, I would have been hurt by that with my inlaws. BM and I did not get along, which would have made it worse. Now that I get along with her, I'm realizing how hard it is to let go of someone that you held so close. I daily miss the family of my ex, but I don't have the blessing of children to keep me in their lives. It hurts. What's not cool is that they're trying to push you out of their lives. There's enough love to go around and they should be giving their new grandkids every bit of love that they can, on top of loving the children of his ex. BM and your DH divorced each other, that does not mean that the whole family should be broken, just the marriage. One of the wonderful things about this world is that we have the opportunity to reach anybody with love. Maybe if you heap niceties on her and them, they will see. Be strong. This whole blended family thing is a rollercoaster of emotions and hardships, but if we can keep patience, love, and kindness at the front of our thinking, we might just start to see all the great stuff that we can get out of this arrangement. Just a few that I've already seen: BM and I hav become friends, skids get to see their father weekly, both ssons have realized that there is more than one world view, skids have grown emmensely in their character by being taught by 4 people instead of just 2. Not easy, but worth it.

NoraMarie's picture

oh gosh, I'm full of love and exceptance but to me there is a boundry there that should not be broken. Being that I am also divorced I have seen this from both ends of the spectrum

NoraMarie's picture

Divorce is a sad horrible last option. But divorce means you want to part ways with your ex. You want your space and life to yourself. The last thing I would want is my ex spouse hanging around all the time while I'm trying to start my new life. I also believe this false sense of "one big happy family" is actually hurtful to the children of the marriage. Its sending false hope and signals that the family is still whole. But it is not. Its a broken family and the child or chhildren should learn to live with that and be healthy and happy with the new arrangement. In my opinion