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Not included in "Family" pictures

Mindygirl1's picture

The hubby and I took our blended family - total of 12 people out to dinner last week. Step Daughter suggested we go to her favorite Japanese steak house...Of course at the end of the meal ONLY my children offered to chip in on a $400.00 dinner. I felt if no one else offered why should my kids have to. The money is not the issue..what happened next was... As we exited the restaurant my step daughter in law came over to my hubby and said "Oh my goodness we need to get photos of you with the 3 grandkids for our family album"... I stood there speechless at the fact they did not include me. I just bought them an expensive meal and they did not ask me to be in a family picture. My hubby said I was being too sensitive..However, I don't think I was. I felt it was rude all the way around. However, when I pointed out that I have never been in a family picture in 9 years he got quiet. I let him know that I felt he was rude too not to have noticed and said come on over here and get in these pictures... I can guarantee one thing... I won't be buying anymore expensive dinners. I think I won on this issue... Sometimes you have to get your feeling hurt to realize a valuable life lesson...

Mindygirl1's picture

I am learning to not get hurt...but rather see the humor in the situations as they come up. GET betcha... The next time the SKIDs invite themselves to an expensive family dinner I will be stating loudly right up front - all parties pay for their own meals. That will solve the problem...they won't even go. Yes...get even is so nice...

Mindygirl1's picture

I sepnt a long time wanting to be included in my hubbys family. I have come to realize they don't like me...don't need a reason as they make them up as they go. They are mean people and really who cares.. I can be nice when I see them. But I never, ever forget that I am glad I am not part of them.

twopines's picture

Yes, lesson learned the hard way. By the same token, they should have no problem being excluded from future "family" things.

Miss-Step's picture

You DH was dead wrong to even step into that pictue without you. He should have just grabbed your hand and pulled you into the picture and said "We'd LOVE to have our picture taken with the grandkids." Another scared little man afraid to stand up to his kids. I'm sorry from your hurt. It was rude all the way around.

Mindygirl1's picture

Hubby is usually so good about standing up for me... He went brain dead on this one and got an earfull about it. He won't do this again...LOL

starfish's picture

i see this a bit differently, i wouldn't invite them to big expensive dinners, i would advise them that you are having one, when & where. and when they do come expecting a free ride, ask the waiter for separate checks made for them.

as far as the photo, been on that rude ride. fuck it, you don't want to be in their album anyway. and any copies sent to you, i mean dh ~ TRASH THEM! there is not one single pic of skids displayed in my home and i don't foresee any grandskid pics either

Mindygirl1's picture

I told hubby that in the future it will be announced UP FRONT whether or not we will be paying for the meal. Guarantee that means we won't see them much anymore. Who cares.... problem solved..

Rags's picture

Oh no, do not announce it.

Optimally, after the meal is over, instruct the server to split the check by family.  Obviously your kids won't mind as they are quality adults who offered to contribute to the check anyway.


As a second best option, instruct the water that it will be separate checks when the server starts taking the order. Enjoy the look on their faces after that and enjoy ordering whatever you and your DH want.


Either option takes the manipulating entitled spawn out of play other than to pay for their own damned meal.


chickadee1444's picture

Your husband should have said "my wife is family too" he is like my husband and doesn't want to rock the boat...someone might get upset, but it doesn't matter if it's thier wives who get are husbands thinks I am too sesitive's were hurt, you should be very upset.

Serena's picture

Pretty rude.The lack of offering to contribute and the pics.I'd not buy them another either.I agree with what twopines said too.They probably see it as your DH bought the dinner and not a thought to your contribution.Typical and yes life is too short to keep trying to be nice to and do things for people who won't return the effort.

My hubby said I was being too sensitive..I know the feeling.

BSgoinon's picture

I think I would have questioned why SHE was in the photo if it was "family". Apparently MARRIAGE doesn't make you family in her eyes.

Mindygirl1's picture

I think I would get such a laugh out of the looks of horror on their faces if I said "We paid last time - you pay this time"... OMG what fun that would be...

lucy51's picture

My husband's children have never offered to contribute to meals except that SS will do the dishes. SD is total princess. I'll never forget how upset I was at SD's wedding. I was not yet married, but we planned to marry the following year, and did. They did not include me in any of the wedding pictures. The BM and former SM yelled at my husband to join them. Everyone excluded me. So rude. I should have known then!

Mindygirl1's picture

You know you really have to go out of ones ways to UN-INCLUDE someone from things like this - ya know??? I have learned thoughts actually go into hurting other peoples feelings. I don't understand this as I NEVER try to hurt someone. I actually go out of my way to make sure no one is excluded or hurt. It never ceases to amaze me at how unkind others can be. I have often wondered how good it would feel to just walk up to some of ny hubbys family and just slap the shiot out of them and say "what the hell is the matter with you"... That is the reason why I do not drink around them. Lord help me if I was to get drunk and tell them what I really thought. What fun that would be.

marblefawn's picture

I was married to my husband for nearly a decade when SD got married. I did all the flowers, invitations, signage and...SHE WAS A BRIDESMAID IN MY WEDDING...and I wasn't asked to be in a single picture on her wedding day.

I was just the help.

ldvilen's picture

Too few people know the difference between being parents and being married. No married couple should ever have to have anyone else's permission to be and act like a married couple. I know I took the same vows as every other married couple when I married my husband. There was nothing in there about accepting my marriage as an inferior or lesser one just because my husband had children from a previous relationship. And, there was nothing in the vows at all about stepping aside from my DH when any calls went out for “family” pictures or seating, etc.

What the OP should have done is gone and gotten her camera, and then asked SD-IL in take pictures of her and SS and DH and the kids. Then, she should have thanked SD-IL, and posted the pictures wherever she wanted. My guess is, SD-IL would have probably more than felt offended. If she’s somewhat smart, she’ll get the message. If not, she’ll go around complaining to everyone what an Evil SM you were, despite the fact that you treated her comparatively to how you had been.

Anyone who thinks it is okay to exclude SM from family pictures or family events or otherwise somehow separate a married couple or long-term SOs without their permissions, needs to have his/her head examined. This is the year 2018 and not 1918 and certainly not 1818. Just because mom and dad or mom-in-law and dad-in-law divorced, it doesn’t give anyone, and I mean anyone, the right to deny or turn a blind eye to fact that dad or mom is now married/ joined at the hip to someone else.

Stepaside-1987's picture

I am always excluded.  I am never thanked for gifts etc. Recently his granddaughter is doing a fund raiser and he was going to send money to her from the both of us.  I told him - no not this time.  It would mean more to just come from him.  I am not playing the f(*king game anymore.  He has tried so hard to include me but the message that is constantly sent from the kids is I am an "outsider".  What that means for me now is ... I don't have to buy the gifts, cards, remember birthdays, etc.  It is all on him.  Of course if he forgets I am sure they will blame me but I have learned that being a stepmother sucks and you are damned if you do and damned if you don't.  


Stepaside-1987's picture

I have one that will visit and even photos that are from our home she will tag the BM and her father.  Never a mention of me.  Hurts but my husband at this time still at times I feel enables her.  However, I don't have to play her game and I won't.  The next time she does visit - I believe I may be "busy". 

MorningMia's picture

The photographer at my SD's wedding included me--it would have been awkward for him not to. But SD and her mommy made sure I was excluded from the photos that ended up on the website, although SD sent us the link. DH did not order any photos nor was he sent any. Oh well. 

knucklehead's picture

Question for the flip side that comes up often on here:

Is it wrong for SM to NOT be in the "family" picture?
If so, is it wrong for skids to be in SM's "family" pictures?

People on here say ALL.THE.TIME that skids do not need to be in family photos. It seems interesting that the SM should be included, though. It isn't a one way street.

BTW, my personal feeling is that family photos should include all of the family. I have included skids in mine. I feel it would be hypocritical to say "no skids" in MY pics, but then get butthurt if I'm not invited to be in theirs.

BSgoinon's picture

I dunno. We have always included EVERYONE in our family pics. Step, adopted, in law. It's all family.

knucklehead's picture

See, and that's where I come from.
I always get flamed for saying the skids should be included in family pics because they're not the SM's "family." (Although they really are, whether it's admitted to or not.)

BSgoinon's picture

Well... then I guess I will get flamed too. Family is family as far as I am concerned. I don't always like my sister but she is in every picture too Wink I hated my first stepmom, and there she was... in every picture. LOL, she was with my dad, she was family.

Mindygirl1's picture

You make a good point. When we take pics at family events I always include everyone. That way you have a good memory of the day. My skids will go out of their way to make sure they only take pics of those they want - their immediate family. They willactually ask one of my kids to get up and out of the way. LOL I am not kidding. I can assure you they don't have one picture of their step siblings in the full 9 years they all have been together. I am to the point now that keeping the families separate is OK with me. Everyone gets along when we are together... so for that I am thankful...

Stepaside-1987's picture

I just recently told my husband I don't give a damn if his kids and mine ever blend..  As far as I am concerned - despite how hard I tried - it is his family and mine and it will never be "ours".

Poodle's picture

See thing was, this was not just a deliberate exclusion of some members of a family. It was really tasteless and trashy behaviour to single out any particular subgroup for special little exclusive photo-session on their own. It was rude to everyone else, not just you. I recently went to a gathering of a colleague who invited a group of girlfriends out for her 40th in a big restaurant. There was food, dancing etc. Then people got out their cells to take photos to remember the occasion. Different groups of women gathered around the birthday girl to celebrate, people who were friends, people who had only just met... there was every combination, cuddling and grinning. Then these pics were circulated in the following days. This is how photos are typically taken at big meals and parties out. For someone to take aside a little family group and use the occasion for their own selfish purposes, is just... plain... rude and cheap. :sick:
I guess if you go out with these people again and anything like this threatens to be re-enacted, you or preferably DH jumps up with a big camera and starts taking huge group photos of everyone, even positioning them in different groups, bustling around in the role as host. That way you could deflate their crap and reduce them to the scuttling little insects they would seem to want to be.

Mindygirl1's picture grandma used to refer to the vapours...You gave me a good memory....

hippiegirl's picture

Mindy, I'm the opposite...I get asked to be in family pics, and I decline. They're not my family. Their DH's family.

jennaspace's picture

Totally agree. Why pay good $ to be treated like you don't exist when you can get it for free?

sandye21's picture

I agree that DH should have grabbed your hand and pulled you into the picture. Next dinner with SDs, when the bill is presented say, "Did you pay last time or did we? Oh yes, we did so I guess it's your turn."

Texas_Pete's picture

If you've never been in their picture theres a good chance you wont be unless something is said,, im glad you stood up for yourself.. Something similar happened to me on "our first Christmas",, I had to say something too so I wouldnt feel like an outsider.. The kicker is I dont think most people do it on purpose,, its just old habits and traditions existed long before we did..

Not-the-mom's picture

Gee, I don't even care if I am in the wedding/family photos, but the skids keep having me in them. Go figure.

I think your hubby should have said, sure "WE ALL" or "BOTH OF US" would love to be in pictures with the the grandkids.

You blew it on that one hubby! Sad Try again.

cpreston's picture

Holy Shit this is like dejavu all over again for me!

Like the time Me DH, Stepson, StepDaughter, and my two biokids were at a super bowl party, that happened to coincide with Stepdaughter’s birthday. My younger kid was about 7 years old… the step-son says to his Uncle, “can you take a picture of the family?” and the three of them gather together, my kid (mind you she was 7 years old at the time) ran over to be in the ‘family’ picture and the asshole had the stones to say “sorry, J, I just want MY family in this picture”

Didn’t care that DH apologized, the asshole son didn’t!

And don’t get me started on the “big dinner” thing… the same leech job step son of mine has NEVER reached into his pocket for a big dinner out!

Last year, we had eight of us out to dinner on vacation… my step-daughter, handed my husband a hundred bucks and, then my step-son actually had the nerve to get MAD because she chipped in for dinner! Because she was “making him look bad” (no honey, she’s got nothing to do with that, you did that all on your own)
He conveniently left his wallet back at the house… (ha, not so convenient, because they wouldn’t let him order any booze without his ID! Hahah)

Countrygirl1968's picture

I know just how you feel! I do agree that the father should say something because not saying something shows acceptance to the action. Have you addressed it with her? I did with mine and nothing has changed. She did take two pictures of me with the grandbaby and her father but I believe that was to make her look like she is this innocent person. BS!!!!!

Saddened's picture

Same thing happened to me. Exclided form family photos at SD wedding and later from seeing MIL before she died. Led to a very near divorce. Told husband he had a dysfunctional emeshed codependent enabled relationship with his daughter who he treats like a mini wife. Didn't go down too well. However he acknowledged what I've said and is aware he can continue his relationship with her but I don't want anything to do with it, she can come to our home when I'm not there but I'm not making myself leave because she wants to visit. F that! It's now the subject that is avoided on the whole and that suits me! 

Rags's picture

Oh hell no!  "she can come to our home when I'm not there".

This is your home too and both partners have full veto rights with no overriding the veto by the other.  His shit spawn of failed faily procreation can stay gone.  He can see her somewhere else  whether you are in your home or not.

Ask  him how he would like you bringing someone to his home that he does not want there.


Daisygirl99's picture

6 years together and not a single one!  I wasn't even allowed to watch her wedding photos being taken, I was told I needed to wait inside and out of the way.  Was so embarrassing too because DH's best friend and wife came over and said you need to get outside they are taking the photos.  I told them I wasn't wanted in them and they were like of course you are, go out there..... I was like no really they told me to stay away.  Their jaws dropped to the ground because DH hides to people the way his daughter is.

She poses mummy and daddy together for every photo for everything like they are together even though they got divorced 25 years ago when she was a baby still!  

At this point I have just given up because it seems both her parents are content in feeding her delusions and letting her have her photo book of them as if they are together.

If she wants a fake family photo book then go for it.  Good luck explaining that to your child when they get old enough to question it.


Trudie's picture

It sounds like your SD is delusional! Ugh! I'm sorry, that must have been so hard for you.
At our granddaughter's first birthday party, a bunch of pictures were posted on Facebook. DH was really hurt to not be included in any of them. It was strange, because he is very close to YSD. 
The whole party was interesting. Rented a venue, over the top decorations, outfit changes, food, etc. Who is the party for? A baby will have no recollection of the event.

Daisygirl99's picture

1 year old birthday party with this lavish candy bar.... but no kids were there except the one year old who couldn't eat it!

The ONLY Picture they took was of SD, SSIL, and baby with you guess it --- ex wife and DH!  They even had matching shirts for ex wife and DH made for the party and picture!  So absolutely all guests were excluded and they posed as a family of four for a single picture and I know the whole intent of that was to make sure I didn't get into a photo.

The extent they go to to pretend I don't exist is absurd.

Newimprvmodel's picture

So mean and cruel to you.  And shame on your husband for going along with the charade.  We were excluded from H's grand daughter first birthday. That was the final straw for me. Before that I had sent tons of flowers, gifts etc etc for the new mom and baby. They had big party with ex's side.  The lightbulb went off in my head. You can't buy people. You can't make them like you. And in your case too you need to let your H deal with these clowns. 

Daisygirl99's picture

It's not a big deal to let her have a picture of her mom and dad together with her grandchild...

which it's not a big deal....

except you excluded their current partners and posed them as a couple together.....

BobbyDazzler's picture

it's downright mean. Your DH shgould have said something or, when arrangements were being made for the pictures, he should have ushered you over.  I'm sorry but it speaks volumes that he didn't insist you were in the pics. What is with these DHs??

Daisygirl99's picture

Doing whatever makes his ex and daughter happy to keep the peace.  His ex's mother told me he is the peacemaker, that everyone in their family is always fighting with each other but my DH just did whatever he had to to keep the peace.

It's just a completely dysfunctional family I think but he tolerates it because that is the family he created his daughter in.

i don't really care about the photos but I feel it adds to her delusions of thinking they can be a little family unit again and therefore adds to the problems.

 I feel if both his ex and him put their foot down and said hey look we both love you but we want to have lives too and while we can be at events together, we expect to have our respective partners there as well and we no longer wish to play pretend, that she would be forced to acknowledge her family is not salvageable as she wants it and do the healing she should have done over 20 years ago but his ex is all too happy to play along it seems.

Daisygirl99's picture

Actually feels bad about the situation and gives my kids gifts for Christmas, sent us a congratulations card and tells me she will always consider my DH family (which used to offend me) but she said that she considers my kids and I her family as well....

Its nice to have at least her that doesn't hate me.  Oh the ex wife's other ex husband likes me too.  Hmmm......

Olivia2020's picture

at exDaughterWife's birthday dinner at a japanese steakhouse, she ignored me the entire time, her nasty friend kep pulling her low cut shirt down to show her bo*bs, exNarcDH ignored her, it was during the time when it was 'cool to seduce your friends fathers.' Ugh! After the dinner, DaughterWife asked a patron to snap photos of them, leaving me to stand there on my crutches. I got it, ok I'm getting myself out the door, walked right in front of them to exit the restaurant, out to the truck in the parking lot. He comes outside with her, saying their long goodbyes, gross, then he fusses at me 'get over here and wish DaughterWife happy birthday and say good bye!' I yelled back, 'F you, I'm on cruches and it's raining, I don't have a f*ing thing to say to her, I already told her happy birthday,now unlock the truck!' Crutches on rain/water do not go well together.

Also happened on her birthday at her high school (ex) boyfriends parents house, she turned 20. She didn't have girls as friends. She was still very chummy with ex bf even when she dated other guys, none stuck around her for more than a night or two. Her mom was there with her new husband (the affair partner) and all included in group photos, even ex bf aunts and uncles she never met before. Just not me, I was shoo'd over to the side. I went outside to wait in the car until he was finished. Back then I was having panic attacks and now I see why. If your womens intuitiion tells you something is off, it is. They do this crap on purpose and it's so petty. 

Daisygirl99's picture

I'm panicking and obsessing over why SD does this crap to me and what on earth I did to deserve it.  I even go to counseling to try and understand what I could have possibly done when she barely knows me and nothing has happened except me put up with a lot of total BS for years.

why do I have to be in counseling trying to figure out why I am so hated and what I did for someone who is exhibiting poor behavior?!?!  I'm sure she sleeps well at night while I am upset.

i need to figure out how to let go and let it be for what it was and stop trying to make sense out of something that makes no sense but it is soooo hard!!  Especially when you are someone who cares and tries hard to get along with others, I know I need to somehow disconnect emotionally from the situation.

Olivia2020's picture

I think most of us have looked and tried to figure out what 'we' have done wrong. Instead it's something inside the step brat that they want perceived control of the situation or to just be ugly in their behaviors.

We're in times where people are oftentimes rewarded with 'fans' or money for their bad behaviors. 

Unfortunately/fortunately karma comes back to people that are intentionally mean/ugly/hurtful to other people. 

Maybe focus on YOU in counseling and what works well for you to become more resilient with people like this. I learned too late, after I left.