I am at a loss

Ozzie's picture

I've been researching the net trying to find answers and this site seems to offer some of the most un-biased advice, so here goes. Apologies ahead of time if I take the scenic route to get to some of the issues. My wife has 3 kids from 2 previous fathers. 2 of them are grown and out of the house (one father), and she has a 12 year old that we all live in the same home. The situation around the house is deteriorating quick. There is no discipline for the child. She will not do it and she will not allow me to. All he does is lay in his bed playing video games and on the internet. I keep getting told that this is normal with kids these days. I can see that, to an extent though. He doesn't listen and can't, or won't think for himself. He constantly has to be told over and over again to do things, and how to do them...right down to flushing a toilet when he's done. He was talked to about leaving toothpaste scum in the sink, to rinse it out when he's done, but if he leaves it on the counter next to the sink, he says it wasn't in the sink so he left it. This is just an example of many more things along these lines. She acknowledges there is a problem and says she will fix it, but that normally lasts about a week tops and then back to the same old situations. I feel this kid is going to grow up to be useless to society and it's happening under my watch. His father is basically homeless, jumping from motel to motel, unless he finds someone off a dating site to live with for a while. This is the example that is being set for the kid. That is a really condensed story but to the point. I'm not sure everyone wants to read a break down of every circumstance, but this has been going on for 2 years now with zero improvement. Her middle child came home from the Army last year and after 2 days I was ready to lose my shit. Leaving stuff laying all over the house, peeing all over the seat, just no respect for someone else's home. At this point I'm seeing a trend. He is getting discharged in December and coming to stay with us, without me being asked of course. I've tried and tried to get my points across and supposedly they're listened to, but brushed off after a week. I don't want to get a divorce, but I am starting to feel there is no other option.

Ozzie's picture

I realize I may have posted this in the wrong spot. If so, can and admin or mod move it to its proper place. Sorry

tog redux's picture

Well - first off, this isn't happening on YOUR watch, because you aren't the parent and therefore not responsible for him or how he turns out.

Your wife isn't going to change, so this is an accept it or leave thing, as the others said. But if you still care for her and want to stay, you can just stop trying to parent him at all.   Clean the stuff that drives you nuts and leave the rest alone.  Stop trying to get him to clean up after himself, just leave it or do what makes you nuts - if a gross sink makes you crazy, wipe it down yourself.  Take their stuff and toss it in their rooms.  Keep the common areas to your liking and let their rooms be in squalor.


Ozzie's picture

The gross sink thing was just one example. There is a whole list of things. I didn't want to put anyone through the agony of being stuck reading the list. I see what everyone is saying and agree. I keep getting told it's normal after it's been acknowledged that it's a problem. I have one person telling me this. I'm not one to air my dirty laundry to family so I went the anonymous route and reach out to other step parents.

tog redux's picture

Gotcha.  My DH is messy and so was my SS, but I just learned to adjust to it because DH was otherwise a good parent and partner.  But your DW is not a good parent and she allows her son to be a slob, too.

Exjuliemccoy's picture

This is who this woman is, and how she chooses to rear her children. It seems she mustered a small amount of parenting effort before the marriage, but once she got you "trapped", she reverted to her true lazy self.

The problem with the way she's raising her kids is, they don't launch or become independent because they have zero hustle, standards, or self discipline. One of the older ones is already planning on returning to mama, and that sort of ping ponging is common with people of this ilk. Skids like this never, ever go away because they lack the pride and life skills to do so. 

You made a mistake by marrying beneath you to a lazy parent who expects you to subsidize her and her kids. Save yourself.

Ozzie's picture

I never had the opportunity to be a parent myself unfortuntely so tried my hardest to not pass judgement. You nailed it with that whole 2nd paragraph. The whole thing really but that 2nd was spot on. I know I could raise the kid to be a good person. The potential is there, but she has zero interest in helping for more than a week at a time every now and then.

Siemprematahari's picture

I am not the one disengaging. His parents already have and I can't make it better for him without her on board.

^^^^^^ This 100%. I think you already knew things wouldn't work because you didn't commit to purchasing a house with her. Dig deep and do some soul searching. Do you want to continue on like this for the rest of your marriage? She's not going to change and will keep breaking her promises of trying to "fix it". You are paying month to month so this works to your advantage. Follow your intuition and do what feels right for you. There is no way you can help this child if his own mother doesn't put forth the effort.


Ozzie's picture

I dug and am preparing. It's a lost cause. My skin crawls now when I see the 2 of them holding down the couch on their tablets every time I walk by.

Rags's picture

Nope, the adult does not move in.  "No" is a complete discussion on that topic.   Your home. Your call.

As for the illbehaved 12yo crotch nugget... Set the rules and standards of reasonable behavior that you require for your home and enforce them.  If DW does not like how you enforce the rules and discipline.... she can step up and get it done before you have to or bite her tongue and have your back.

If she cannot accept these requirements..... have the locksmith on speed dial to come rekey the locks and she can navigate her spawn behavioral issues elsewhere and with someone other than you.


Ozzie's picture

Didn't buy a house but lease was in both our names. We're now month to month. I'm getting things in line and being ready for each scenario, if she refuses to leave I'll go...if she leaves I'll stay. I'm hoping spite doesn't kick in and she demands to stay because I'm not about to pay for the place for her to live there, and there is no way she can afford it. It's going to get worse before better unfortunately.


Rags's picture

The beauty of month to month is that you can go any time you wish... with notice to the landlord.

Notify the landlord that YOU will be leaving and if STBXW and her spawn are on the hook for the rent.

Don't forget to get off of the utilities as well.

Good luck and enjoy your new life adventure with this shallow and polluted gene pool fading in your rear view mirror.

Take care of  you.

CLove's picture

You can copy/paste this post - I think the General Forum would work for you!

Then delete this one.

CLove's picture

I had a kid who we had 50% and she was ping ponging between houses when things got too hot for her. And she hasnt changed! She was as bad at 15 as she now is at 20, except its gotten way worse. I used to call her winona, for getting caught stealing makup sponges at jc pennys. Then Toxic Feral, because she was living with us, had her own room, and it was always trashed, with food containers, dishes, and TRASH. She lived like a Feral child, with no sense of pride in her home space.

She got a job and then ghosted us for almost 2 years. Then, when she was kicked out of her place of residence, she asked momeeee to let her move in. They are identical, her and Toxic Troll BM. Every month or so, they will have some blow out argument, and Feral Check Forger will ask DH for money or to move back in with us. DH said "well, Feral, things are the same, and you hate CLove, why do you think things will be any different or better here with us?" Pretty much shuts the brat down.

Luckily for me, she hates me, and DH and I will be partners in owning the home, so that bridge has been burned a long time ago. She has been accusing people of abuse (unfounded), and most recently forged some checks belonging to her mother.

So glad she is out of MY home, and now the deal is sealed she is forever out of my home with DH. Win for me!

Sorry you are going through this - it is impossible if the parent refuses to parent. I would feel trapped if I were you.

Keep us posted!

Cbarton12's picture

I think everyone has else has kind of hit the nail on the head. Either accept things aren't going to change or leave. 

There's a difference between being messy and dirty. Her kids sound like they are dirty and have no respect for things or any drive. 

I have a cousin who was raised this way. With zero discipline. He's 21 only works 30 hours and dropped out of college. on his days off he just lays in his bed playing video games. And of course he continues to live with mommy and daddy. 

Dont let that be your life!

Ozzie's picture

Well I dropped the D bomb tonight. So she thinks after 1.5 years of marriage I'll be paying spousal support, alimony, and child support? For her kid that she already gets child support for from BF.

Rags's picture

She is a special kind of stupid isn't she?  Nope, alimony, spousal support and CS for a child that is not your BK has about 0% chance of happening.

Enjoy your reprieve from this crazy person and enjoy your new life adventure with she and her shallow and polluted gene pool fading into your past.

Good luck.

Monkeysee's picture

Child support for HER kids?? Yeah I’m sure that’ll happen lol. And spousal support after 1.5 years of marriage? Even if it was ordered, which isn't likely, it would be minimal & short term. But seriously doubtful!

At least you know her true motives & can move on knowing she’s in it for herself. You deserve much better than this mooch & her lazy, leeching offspring. 

Ozzie's picture

Right now it's the seeing if she'd blowing smoke or not game. I need to decide on lawyering up or going uncontested. I don't mind starting over again, but would rather do it with more $$ left over...lol


Rags's picture

Lawyer up.  NOW!  Do not risk her doing it first and raping you in the divorce.

No need for it to be debilitatingly spendy but being prepared is better than getting dragged through the fire.  Better to do the dragging than being dragged.

Take care of  you.

Ozzie's picture

Unfortunately I am. She is not going to be 'forced out of her home', or signing divorce papers if I go uncontested until she is ready to.

Rags's picture


I cringe at you tolerating her presence until she is ready. This is not an agreement thing. This is not about her being ready. This is the bid D. Divorce, it is not about agreement, it is about results.  Make a reasonable offer and have a big stick in the other hand to beat the message home.

It is YOUR home. Not hers.  At this point she is merely taking up space in the home you own.

She has demonstrated her position.  She wants you to support her children and herself.  Nope, divorce ends the relationship and the support. Particularly the support of a Sparent for the Skids ... unless the STB former Sparent chooses to support.  In a short term marriage... spousal support is extremely unlikely.

As for getting her out.  Nothing a call to the locksmith won't fix the next time she is out for the day.  Then you can have her belongings packed and moved to a storage facility.  Pay for a month of storage and hand her a key to the lock.  Give the storage facility her contact information. If she does not pay after the first month or pick up her stuff... then the storage facility can deal with her.

I have been through a contentious divorce.  When my XW started getting screwy and changing our agreements I drove a stake in the ground and defended myself with absolute focus from that point forward.  I find that zero tolerance and demanded compliance with a structured divorce process is a far less life consuming experience than a free form divorce.

Change the locks, move her crap, and get on with your life.

IMHO of course.

Take care of you. 

raindrop's picture

I only read 1/4 of the replies, so I’m not sure what you have decided to do. But nonetheless, I thought I’d give you a similar story and the outcome. 

Male, Never married, no kids, met a divorced woman with 4 kids. All the older kids were out of the house, the only one with them full time was the boy10. After THREE months of marriage, they separated because he couldn’t handle how feral and disrespectful the boy was to his mom, telling her to shut up, finishing dinner and leaving all dishes on the table, etc. Mom excused his behavior by saying he picked up his bad habits and “shut up” from his dad.  They got back together after a 6 month separation and counseling. The boy wA somewhat better for a little while, and then the oldest son cane gone from college, and he was disrespectful toward the husband, calling him the N word, leaving pee in the toilet, etc. Needless to say, they got a divorce which was finalized around their 18 month anniversary. He was pretty traumatized by everything. It’s now been 2 years since the divorce and he’s met someone single/no kids and they are just having a blast together. He’s never looked so happy.  The exW? Still single and looks 10 years older, huge weight gain, bags, never smiling, eyes look empty. She created these monsters and now she’s paying for it. Don’t get sucked into this any further. Divorce while it’s still relatively early and move on with life with someone who doesn’t have children.