Does it ever end? Do they ever grow up?!
Hi. I'm new here. Will definitely be reading everyone else's posts & responses, as from the subject titles, I see that many of us are in the same boat.
My husband & I have been married nearly 20 years. His kids are now well into adulthood. VERY early in our marriage, his ex, an excessive fanatical control freak, tried to take command of our lives, exert outrageous control, intrude into our lives sometimes on a daily basis, and so on. When we resisted, attempting to set normal boundaries, she dove into "parental alienation mode," weaponizing the kids. So, six months into our marriage, the kids stopped speaking to us. The daughter held out for a few years (predictably until she needed money for college). After constant harassment from the ex (email and phone) during this time, I finally spoke up and told her to back off and stop brainwashing her kids. She told the kids that I had attacked her, I had hurt her, etc. (I envision tears and a fit), which sealed the damage to the relationships.
I've honestly never known what I have truly "done wrong" in this situation (we have gone to counseling, I've racked my brain, I've attempted honest conversation with the skids), and I feel somewhat like a punching bag that at times has lost any sense of dignity. My husband and I have for the most part been a team when handling this, but, let's face it...they are his kids and of course he has wanted good relationships with them. At times, I've wondered what kind of man allows his wife to be treated like garbage, or who thinks she should be ok with being treated that way. (Then he sees that he is treated that way as well.) At other times, I'm very happy he stands his ground and has confronted the issues.
I can't begin to tell people what we have been through. . .the rudeness, the games, the hurt. At one point, I told my husband that I would no longer allow anyone treating me like dirt in my own house and I was done: If he wanted to see his kids, have at it. Go to them. I went 7 years without seeing my SD. She came around again, predictably, when she needed money for a wedding. It was then that she told me that when she was younger, she had felt I was stealing her father from her but she wanted to get past that and move forward. But her actions since then, some very hurtful, tell another story. She said the words that she hoped would result in another payday.
Things went well (quiet) for a while, with only minor daggers thrown our (mostly my) way. Then my husband became ill and "THEY ARRIVED." My grown-a skids came into our house "to help" for several days but behaved like angry, resentful, jealous teenagers, expecting me to wait on them, cook for them, grocery shop after they emptied the cabinets and fridge, etc. while they went out and enjoyed themselves and napped in our living room (while my husband was immobile and I still had to work).
WHY did I think things would be different? WHY would I expect adults to behave like adults and not like entitled "owed" spoiled brats? They just left.
This doesn't end, does it? I am so distraught right now, so indescribably exhausted, and just OVER THIS. Of course, my poor husband, who has always wanted to see his children in the best light (but he has seen the light) is so grateful for their "help" (that they bothered to even come here when he was sick), failing to see that the garbage keeps spewing. . . this time (or once again) all over me. I am disgusted.