Unsure of how to handle this situation with my boyfriend's 4 year old son...
My boyfriend and I haven't been dating long, but we got very serious very quickly and so when he spends time with his 4 year old son, I spend time with him too and I watch him at night when my boyfriend is at work. He started calling me "mom" almost as soon as I met him and I figured it was because he's just used to saying "mom" when he needs/wants something like most kids are and when he does that. I didn't want to encourage it by pointing out to him that he shouldn't call me "mom" and have him say it more often and I also didn't want to make him feel bad by telling him not to call me mom, so I would just remind him that his mom was at her house and that he was spending time with me at daddy's house, I thought that would help clarify things if I helped him realize that his mom was somewhere else and that he was at his dad's house with another person.
But now, the last 2 time we've had him, he's asked me if I'm now his real mom. The first time he asked me that, I did the same thing, I told him "Your mommy is at her house right now, and I'm your daddy's girlfriend and we're spending time at daddy's house right now and you'll go back to your mommy's house on _______". But this passed weekend we had him again and this time he asked me "Are you my real mom now?" and I repeated what I told him last time and he continued and said "But you're the one that cares about me, so now you can be my real mom". I didn't know what to say to that, so I told him that I do care about him and repeated the same thing that I had been telling him. He kissed my cheek and said "No, you're my mom now". I didn't encourage it anymore and told him that it was bed time so we needed to do our bedtime routine so that way I could talk to my boyfriend about how he wanted to handle this.
The other two issues I'm concerned with is that he told me that while he's at his mom's house, he's allowed to say things like "What the f@#%". I of course told him that his dad was not ok with him saying those words at his house, and he asked me why he couldn't say it at his dad's and he could say it at his mom's.. I didn't want to be the one to answer that so I told him that we would ask his dad about it.
The other is that she let him watch Paranormal Activity. He specifically said that he's too scared to go to sleep because he had a nightmare about it and he started to describe it very vividly: the ghosts in his nightmare where chasing him with sticks, one ghost hits him in the stomach with a guitar, he falls down and hits his face and there's blood everywhere and the rest of the ghosts throw glass at him. He's only 4 years old and he described a nightmare that would have woken me up in a panic, it was heartbreaking to hear! Although I'm not religious, my boyfriend is, so I told him that you can ask god to take away your bad dreams and that if you get kisses on your forehead, it takes away scary thoughts. He really likes those ideas so we did both before bed time and he went to sleep on time.
I told all this to my boyfriend, but he and I haven't been able to sit and talk about it yet, but he knows what happened and said that I handled it the way he would have wanted me to, but now I'm really worried about how to deal with this and how to let his mom know that her son is saying these things to me. I definitely don't want her to find out from the son that he's calling me his "real mom", I think it would be better to take the initiative and have my boyfriend talk to his ex-wife. This is the first time I've dated anyone with a child and while I do have several cousins/nieces/nephews that I spend a lot of time with and helped raise, I've never been in a "step parent" role before. My impression of the mom is that she's young, immature, and doesn't discipline her son very much. I understand that it's my boyfriend's responsibility to make sure that he and his ex-wife are on the same page when it comes to a parenting plan, but she's difficult to deal with and my boyfriend tries not to stir things up with her and keep things civil. But I really want to suggest to him that he have a very serious talk with her about these things and how it's not good for their son. She never drops him off when she's supposed to and will go off schedule and delay the time he's suppose to spend with his dad and I, and I think that's what's confusing him the most. I think it would be best for him to have a very clear and laid out schedule so he knows when he's going to see his mom and dad and I think he needs to spend time with his dad more often, because right now the mom will only drop him off when it's convenient for her and my boyfriend tries to talk to her about dropping him off more often/on time, but has a difficult time trying to talk to her.
I guess what I'm asking is what my role should be in this, if any, and if I'm doing anything wrong/right by having a relationship with my boyfriend's son. I completely understand that I am not a parent and I have no say in what's best for my boyfriend's son, but I do help take care of him, I spend a lot of time with him, and I love him very much and just want what's best for him even if it's not what's best for my boyfriend and I. Any advice?