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Would you do it again?

Newimprvmodel's picture


I have come to the conclusion that second marriages can only work if you realize that any children are higher up than you on the pecking order. DH said he told his adult daughter that he needs to consult with me, yet basically ignored everything I said and is giving the money anyway. And is anger at my comments. 

I would never have remarried knowing what I know now. 

ESMOD's picture

My marriage would not have lasted if my DH didn't make me a priority.  Now, I am not saying that there weren't times that his obligations to his kids meant that I did without.  I'm not saying that there weren't times where their needs and wants meant that things were spread more thinly.  But, there were also plenty of times his kids and EX heard "no" because he wouldn't put us in a bad position... or times where he said NO because he wasn't going to skip something important he had to do with me.  That he didn't leave his kids at home while we went on vacations etc...

I absolutely never felt put 2nd on hierarchy.  I understood that chilldren are wholly dependent upon their parents (both of them) to raise them and care for them.. BUT.. as his wife, he chose me and in turn did things to make me happy.. and putting his kids on a pedastle above me was not something he ever did.

tog redux's picture

Same for me, I never felt second best. It is possible for men to parent their kids adequately and not put them on a pedestal. Just look for all that stuff BEFORE you marry him.

Exjuliemccoy's picture

He's a good man, just damaged by a bad childhood and checking out is his default coping mechanism. 

But he loves me fiercely, and knows I've been through the wringer with his kids and his family. In fact, ours is a great love that has survived several things that would kill most marriages.

He just never should have had children.

bedazzled's picture

My husband never should have had children

dysfunctionally_blended's picture

That would be a deal breaker for me - and was.

In the beginning I came second, or third or whatever just never first. I was always last. Before HCBM. Before skids. I would set my boundaries and they were always stomped all over. And if I said anything the blame would spin right back around to me. 

Then I walked. Emotionally. Physically was coming quick. And it changed. I am not sure if my SO finally had that light bulb moment. Or if it was the realization that I meant what I was saying. But what ultimately happened is our relationship is number 1. Nothing is allowed to step inside or that.

I am asked if I want to participate. I am asked before plans change or take place. I am first in all decision making. And nobody has a say in any of it besides the two of us. 

If that ^^^ is not the case, it won't work. 

TX2step's picture

The answer is no. As Katharine Hepburn said, " If you want to sacrifice the admiration of many men for the criticism of one, go ahead and get married." I would have knowingly put myself in a situation where my husbands happiness depends on his relationship with his daughter. Sad but true.  Ahh remembering those single carefree days.

Rags's picture

Nope, I wouldn't want to do it again. Mainly because, baring any unforseen events, I shouldn't  have to.

My XW was a toxic cavern crotched adulterous whore.  Moving on from her without polluting my own gene pool was a major win for me.

3+ years post divorce I met an amazing young woman who happended to have a kid.  I got cold feet and decided I was not going to remarry..... ever.  A call from my dad (he and mom had their 56th anniversary earlier this year) outlining my choices to take another shot at creating a life with someone or going through the rest of my life with a series of partners and I decided to give it one more try.  24+ years later... we have raised a great  young man together (SS-26), we both put each other and our marriage above all else, and we are having a great time making our life one worth living to the fullest.  Not that we haven't had a plethera of blended family issues to navigate along with various and sundry other life issues. We certainly have.

So, No, I would not do it again by choice. Thankfully, it doesn't look like I will have to.

But, if something tragic were to end my marriage... in time I would take another shot at amazing. I would want her to if our marriage ends with my demise, as is the most likely end game, and she would want the same for me. Dad's advice still stands.


Kes's picture

I would still have married my DH had I known what was coming - at least I think I would - who knows?  But it would have given me pause for thought.  

If I were to find myself single again at my time of life - (early 60s) I would NOT marry again, and doubly not get involved with anyone who had adult SKID issues.  I would carry on an at distance relationship, but would not get legally linked to them.  I would want to spend my twilight years in peace, not haggling over vile SKIDs.  

Myss.Tique D'Off's picture

Would I, in future,  marry or get involved with someone who has children? No. Not happening. 

Would I undo the mistake of marrying IPOD-H, dealing with his out of control kids and end up divorcing him? No. I actually learned quite a lot over the last few years and that knowledge has taught me not to repeat the mistake. So no I would not undo the experience. At least for a few years, I lived on the wild side and got to know how the other dysfunctional half lived... Makes me appreciate my happiness and serenity a lot more now. I don't take it for granted.'s picture

I love my husband.  I love our two sons.  But to walk in knowing exactly what was coming?  I just don't know.  Around here even the damn dog outranks me.  So ...yeah not so sure.

Merry's picture

If I had known all the trouble ahead, no, I probably would not have married my DH. I was so crazy in love that nothing would have stopped me.

But I've learned a lot. Grown a lot. Part of that was learning what I needed and standing up for myself and my marriage. Same with DH. I definitely hold my rightful position of wife and partner now--that wasn't always the case. So I also don't want to undo anything. I still love the guy, but the flame burns a bit cooler.

Oh. And the dogs outrank everybody in my house. That's my own doing though. I've NEVER entertained the thought of getting rid of THEM.

LosingHerShit's picture

No way! I would have been looking for a man with NO children!!!! If me and my DH don't make it I will never date a man with kids again!!!!

MissDenise's picture

Doubt we'll ever divorce but if something happened to DH I'd be happily single. I'll get a poodle. Too many women are insecure and can't be alone. Had friends that jumped right into another relationship which simply had another different set of problems. I'll enjoy the poodle, my kids, and by that time probably grand-kids!!! Why would I mess that up...

MissDenise's picture

Maybe this is a bit negative, but I see very few happily married women. Whether it's the first or second marriage. I went through the same things 15 years ago, but felt trapped. We had the ex that he would call behind my back from work, and he would side with her or his older kids. Now it's much better and I'm glad I stayed but mainly for the pensions and security. 

Too old for this's picture

I would not have gone into a marriage had I known the problems SKs would create and DHs inability to deal with them.  

I had 2 SKs in my previous marriage.     We had huge problems because their mother killed herself before I arrived on the scene.  They were young when I married their dad.  Through counseling and complete support from my then husband we got through it, not just in one piece but close. Since he died 17 years ago, the three of us have remained close.  So, when it came time to consider remarriage with a man who had “grown”children, I thought it would be a piece of cake.  It never occurred to me what problems they would cause.  Nor did it occur to me that DH would be such a wimp. 

We have been married for 13 years now and are still struggling.  I dread the upcoming holidays.  I dread having them around.  I dread having to walk on eggshells.  I dread the impact on our intimacy that is caused by this huge schism between us.  Even my SKs from my former marriage can’t believe how obnoxious these people are.

In short, having to build a marriage with a conflicted spouse is pretty much impossible.  Had I known that, I would not have done it.

Starlightwest's picture

Hard to say. My DH had lost his first wife unexpectedly after 25+ years of marriage. We dated 1.5 years and I knew adult SD was a problem but naively (even in my 50’s!) thought it wouldn’t be that big a deal. Wrong! She can ask him to do just about anything and he would. He has blinders on where she’s concerned. He can sure point out faults in my family but gets pissed if I say anything negative about her. Incredibly frustrating. I dread all the same things the poster just above said. It’s pure misery when she and her family are all in our home. They live in complete chaos and she’s mean as a snake. I miss my calm, quiet home I had when I was single. I do love my husband but this issue drives me back to counseling again and again.  Even got some short term, quick acting meds to help for the upcoming holiday. 

Exjuliemccoy's picture

Your DH is not normal, or even close so I think it unfair to assume that all second marriages involving kids are doomed to fail. He has layers of issues that have kept you unhappy, but there are well adjusted divorced parents out there who parent consistently and well. You're just never going to find one while you're with this controlling man who slavishly worships his daughters while relegating you to a back burner. The dysfunction lies with him, not with remarriage.

Momof2Girls's picture

My H is coddling his his 18 yo daughter. Her feelings seem more important than mine. He wants me to be so happy he says but delosional that we are all one BIG happy family. 

I hate that she lives with us. I would never marry a man with kids. I wish I had a friend or co worker to talk to prior to marrying into this hell. The Years of dealing with BM crap, don’t get me started.


Focused_onourlife's picture

I would do it again but I would have disengaged from my OSD26 at 7 when she started her manipulation, drama fest tactics and I would have also stopped trying to be accepted by my MIL and DH extended family after the first case of feeling rejected (instead of getting butt hurt of the underhanded sh** for almost 20 years before saying f them). Live and learn...

CANYOUHELP's picture

Had I seen all this bs coming beforehand, no.  As much as I love him, I would have never have done this; I would find somebody who made me his priority, who defended me and was not a push over doormat, unable to ever correct his spoiled, selfish, poorly raised -brat adult kid.


TheEvilStepmomStrikesBack's picture

Nope nope nope! I love my husband dearly, but I would not have chosen this life knowing what I know now. I have a younger cousin who’s about to marry an older man with 2 kids. It hurts me to know the type of bull she’s signing up for. She can’t see it cause she still has that Love conquers all mentality. All I see is me 4 years ago and that makes me sad. 

cyberwoman's picture

Absolutely NOT. I was an inexperienced young woman, fresh out of college, totally underestimated DH emotional maturity, and totally overestimated my ability to deal with the stress and drama. The drama never ends with some men.  Also I am 10 years of DH's junior, this albatross (aka SS) will remain with me for the rest of my life.

sandye21's picture

After 20 years of placing our marriage as a low priority, I gave DH the choice of changing or leaving.  But the 20 years of hell left their mark.  I am glad to be with him now and we enjoy each other for the most part.  But before I would enter into any future relationship with a man with kids again I would do a few things differently.  First, as cold as it looks, I would do a 'background check' to see if he was leaving important financial information out or leading me to believe something that wasn't quite the truth.  I found out after we got married that DH had led me to believe he was better off than he was and that his job had a lot of potential.  If a man has recently changed careers, I would wait until he had reached his 'potential' before getting married.

Another thing - I would insist that the marriage will be treated as top priority, that inappropriate behavior by grown children would not be allowed in our home, and he would have my back at all times.

But really, why would I want to marry a man again?  It's a lot easier to live with someone than to enter into marriage where there are potential legal issues if it doesn't work out.  So the answer is probably no.

susanm's picture

No.  I love my DH and I would have dated him and had the wonderful early years.  But I would have cut it off well before being "allowed" by BM to meet the golden children and becoming part of their lives.  Our lives together can be clearly separated into before and after.  I know that he was suffering without them being part of his daily life but that was his own fault for not taking the advice of his very highly paid attorney.  He did not want to "force" them to do anything they did not want to do.  In other words, he had drunk so deeply of BM's koolaid for so long that he was still drunk on it and listened to her version of "what was best for them."  And they were so PAS'd by the point that they were coming for regular visits that there was no hope for peace.  Only now that they are adults are things decent with 2 of them.  With one they are non-existent.  And we are trying to recover from years of fights, misunderstandings, and resentments. If I had known I would have kissed him goodbye as soon as BM began to tire of being the sole parent, wished him well, and gotten on with my life.  I would always love him but it would be a good memory not clouded by the pain and resentment we had to go through to stay together.

WaterOffaDucksBack's picture

Like everyone else, I love my DH but had I known his he would place my SD22 over myself and our DS4 at times even, how he continues to not be a real parent to SD22 when she needs it and put her in her place when she disrespects me in our home... the list can go on and on unfortunately... but i wouldn't. I would have enjoyed our relationship until I realized his lack of boundaries and a spine where SD22 is concerned and then I would have moved onto the next relationship -- one without any SKs ideally! Thank you, next! 

Aniki's picture

Yes. DH and I have a history that predates BioHo and I stupidly broke things off with him 25 years ago. YUGE mistake. Probably my second biggest mistake.

However, I would have gone in disengaged from the very beginning.

Mountains's picture

I love my DH but the last 14 years have been really tough at times.  Although we are at a good place in relation to the skids, it was a long, lonely road.  His kids were 48 and 45 when we has been hell off and on for years. DH finally saw through the madness but it still is an open wound for him to see his kids in this new light.  I was unaware of many of the perils of marrying someone with grown children when we wed.  

momjkm's picture

Had I known his deep dark secret of having no balls when It comes to disciplining his kids. He is a Disney Dad. I was already married, moved to new house and moved my freshman daughter before the real hubby came out. Its been a tough road. 

shes driving me crazy in my retirement's picture

Had I known about T and what she is, I definately would  not have married my H.  No one should ever have to experience her.

And I am not being cruel by saying that, just honest.

Miss T's picture

DH and I are going on 15 years together and we've come out mostly intact on the other end of skids. My DS and DDs are a mess, but other than having to deal with my reactions to them they haven't caused DH to suffer much. They were mostly growed up and out by the time we got together, and I have seen that they stay that way. Elder DD texted him on Father's Day to say, Happy Father's Day and thanks for making our Mom so happy!  I'm hard on them, but they're tolerable.

SS not so much. RIght now he works out of state but will be moving to a nearby city this fall. We are moving far, far away in 18 months, though, so any discomfort he causes will be short-lived. Although we had him only EOWend, for one ghastly Christmas break and one horrible summer, which is not really that much in the 15-year scheme of things, he's managed to be a major PITA. At this point he has disciplined himself/been disciplined to say at most, Hi, SM. Merry Christmas, SM. Good-bye, SM. He seems to know his place and at last DH is no longer paying any of his bills. Now that the majority of the sturm and drang is over and DH no longer kowtows to the ex and his son, I think I would do it again because I treasure my partnership with DH but the manipulations of his ex and son have been crazy-making more than I care to recall and in the past there were a couple of times when I came mighty close to booting both DH and his miserable spawn.

My circumstances were far better than those of many posters here. I would advise anyone not financially independent OR with small kids in the mix to RUN FAST, RUN FAR. Wait until the little darlings are grown up and out, and maybe don't make the leap even then, depending on the dynamic between your DH and his offspring. I mean, the garbage you hear around here about grown women and their daddees. Ugh.

MaryJ's picture

Never again! I can live without the stress and drama that comes with being a step.  

I had a lapse in judgement.

I know within the depths of my soul....I am bio childfree for a reason!

Doublehelix's picture

Man, this question makes me sad... Simply put, like others, as much as I love my partner, our life together is hard as heck, so if I had to do it again I probably would have said, "sorry, you're cool, but you having a kid is a deal breaker for me" and it would be known from the beginning that his kid and everything surrounding her is a BIG FREAKING DEAL. I think I was too quick to say "oh, it's'll be fine" (bc I was naive and delusional lol) which set the precedent that I was fine, everyone was fine. Maybe if I had made a big stink about it from the beginning, he would have been more aware that we would have to make it work IN SPITE of him being a father, and not AROUND his being a father. 

Relationships are hard enough when it's just the couple and no kids. Throw in all this other stuff, like, WHY??

Missingme's picture

No, I would not.  I’m not strong and tolerant enough, sadly?  It takes a special person to get into a well established pattern of behaviors.   

Sigh's picture

On the day of the week you ask...however, if it's any indication, we are together for 11+ years and own a new home together but have yet to marry...

Rags's picture

I would do it again in a second and without reservation.

However, my bride and I are a team, equity life partners, and equity parents to my SS-27 since we married the week before he turned 2yo.

If we did not put each other and the marriage and above all else, including the Skid, I would give you a different answer.

Minor children are and should be the top relationship responsibility but never should they take precendence over the arriage and the partners.

As for financial decisions, those are joint decision.  Each partner gets veto rights. If one vetos, that is it.  In our case my incredibly intelligent CPA bride is far more strict on providing financial help to her financially inept family than even I am and I am very strict.  She won't give them a penny.  No matter what.  Even when it means their kids, our nieces and nephew, go hungry or without.  Letting them pull the kids heart strings just allows the adults to keep making shitty decisions. So, we let them learn the lessons of their choices.  Particularly, my wife formulates the lesson.