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Bedroom Situation - please help!

DCblended's picture

We are currently in a four bedroom house, and we have four kids. 

Here is the set up of the bedrooms:

1. Oldest, DD10 is in her own room, we have her about 55-60% of custody, and currently pushing for more custody when she goes to high school in 1.5 years.

2. DD8 is in her own room too, we have her about 55-60% of custody

3. SD7 has her own room too, DH has her officially 50% custody, but I calculated she sleeps here about 30-40% because BM asks for extra days here and there and she stays with DH's parents often.

4. DS16mo is in a makeshift room in the living room, with only a curtain to separate off the room. He's an "ours" baby so of course he's with us 100% of the time.

We cannot afford to move somewhere bigger. I'm the only one working, DH has been off work for 2-2.5 years.

I think that we should switch DS and SD7 when DS turns 2, so she has the makeshift bedroom, because he's here around 3x as much as she is. I'm flexible to possibly wait until he turns 3. I don't want to put my older girls in a room together because at their dad's they share a bedroom in a very cramped space that is office/shared bedroom, and they deserve to have their own space here. I don't want to put DD8 and SD7 to share a room together, also because SD7 is bossy and downright mean sometimes.

Anyone have any ideas? 

DCblended's picture

My DD8 is very close to our toddler and said she wanted to share a room with him, but unfortunately their sleeping habits are opposite - he does well on a 8pm-6am sleep schedule (doesn't need much sleep), but she needs 12+ hours per night still (7:30pm - 8am). Also I don't think it's legal. 

Dogmom1321's picture

No they would just be waking each other up constantly. Why does the 8 y/o want to share a room with a baby but not her older sister?

Dogmom1321's picture

If it were me, 8 & 10 y/o can share a room. Yes, they share a bedroom at their other house too, but that's just the reality of having divorced parents w/ siblings. I also wouldn't want my LO in a makeshift room. 

What was the situation like before you had an "ours" baby? Why is DH not working? Does he have any plans to work soon so hopefully you can get a bigger place?

walfredo's picture

The custody arrangements seem pretty equal for the 3 kids that aren't an us baby.  The frame of mind that your kids "deserve" something that the others don't seems problematic.

I've never been in the situation where I was providing housing to a significant others child from another relationship and the only one contributing to the financial ability to do that.  I imagine that could be frustrating/upsetting.  Is this your reasoning, ie your husband isn't pulling his weight, so his offspring doesn't deserve the same place in the family structure as your offspring?

I get the sentiment, but that is basically saying you and your husband aren't on equal footing... Why doesn't he work?  Is he taking more responsiblity on with your us baby as well as the others?  Is he lazy?  Do you have resentment towards him not contributing financially?  If you could fix that, would it be workable to get more space?  

ndc's picture

They deserve their own rooms? When another (full time) child doesn't have a dedicated bedroom at all? That makes no sense.  Lots of kids share bedrooms - it's not a prison sentence. 

I'd be focusing less on bedrooms and more on your husband who hasn't worked in over 2 years. That is completely unacceptable. I find it difficult to believe that he can't find any job.  Door Dash? Stocking shelves at night? Bartending/serving? Even if not in his field, there are jobs to be had.  And if he can't find one in over 2 years, what is he doing to improve his skills?

DCblended's picture

Hi Domom, before we had an "ours" baby, DD8 and SD7 shared a room (at our old house) and it was a nightmare, they had some fun half the time, and the other half, SD7 was always trying to get DD8 in trouble, she was very mean, etc etc.

Dogmom1321's picture

Does he have any side jobs in the meantime? Bar tending, handyman, anything...? Almost 3 years without working of any sort becomes a choice. 

If not, I think you have way more than just a bedroom problem. You have a DH problem. 

DCblended's picture

Yes, there is a DH problem, but that is another topic, and I have given him an ultimatum. He currently does 95% of the cooking, he does 90% of the errands, and we don't have our 16mo in daycare, so I make DH take care of him during the day. But I'm getting fed up of the arrangement. He has a job that is "lined up" for April, and I have asked him, if when he checks in February if it is not 1000% confirmed, then we're putting our son in daycare so I can work as much as I can without stress.

Dogmom1321's picture

Please tell me you aren't financially supporting SD too in the midst of all this. 

DCblended's picture

I am, and it pisses me off especially the way she treats my daughters. Do you think it's appropriate for me to ask him to decrease custody % or something?

Dogmom1321's picture

He is riding the gravy train! Put a stop to all of this nonsense right now unless you want to be miserable forever. 

Currently he is unable to support his own child. Until he has a JOB to provide adequate housing & food for SD, then she needs to live with BM. Period. This should be effective immediately. 

Maybe that will light a fire under his @ss.

DCblended's picture

The BM is not even paying child support to him.

I'm scared to bring it up because he said we're in this together, we share an account etc.

BethAnne's picture

Why would she pay child support when by your calculations she has the kid more than him? 

DCblended's picture

Because technically they are 50/50 and she makes more money than him. For example, my DD's dad pays a small child support to me because he makes more money than I do.

BethAnne's picture

If that is the case then you need to insist that your husband apply for child support. That is money your household needs to pay for sd. 

Dogmom1321's picture

You are in a financially abusive relationship right now.

He SHOULD have nothing, but somehow he has access to ALL of your money? And he has manipulated you into taking financial responsibilty for SD? I hope you realize how NONE of this sounds okay. 

BethAnne's picture

No. You tell him to pull his finger out and either be a full time sahd who parents his daughter so she isn't mean to your kids or he brings in an income that more than covers childcare for the toddler and parents his daughter so she isn't mean to other kids. 

edited to add: his income should also cover his expenses and his daughter's too ideally but him working needs to be a net positive to the household income after child care at minimum. 

DCblended's picture

how would you calculate expenses for the household? Divide our rent by 2.5/6 ? What do you think

BethAnne's picture

There are different ways that people could do it. You need to negotiate with him and find something that feels (and looks) fair to both of you. 


la_dulce_vida's picture

The formula that worked for me was the two adults pay the household bills according to how much of the household income they bring in. If the total household income is 100K, you make 60K and he makes 40K, then you divide housing costs by 60% and 40%. You have 2 bio kids that I assume are not your partner's and he has a bio kid that is not yours. You share a child.

I would divide the utilities and groceries based on how many of your respective kids are in the house. He has 1 child 50% of the time on paper. You have one of your children 50% of the time. You have DD8 who I assume is full time and you share DS. That means your share is 2 children (8 year old, 1/2 of the 10 year old and 1/2 of the baby). And his share is 1 child (1/2 of DS and 1/2 of SD). So that means you pay 3/5 of the household bills (1 for you, 2 for your share of the children) and his is 2/5 (himself and his share of the children).

Calculate that and tell him what his share is.

I've read both your recent posts and it seems to me that while SD is a problem, your husband is the bigger problem. Even if he is playing the house husband role, you seem resentful of his lack of employment and his daughter's behavior only exacerbates the problem.

I know you're frustrated but the biggest problem here is that your spouse is clearly not disciplining his daughter - he is the problem - not her.  And shipping her off to her mom is not the answer.

walfredo's picture

I should have read through more before my earlier post.  

This is legitimate resentment, and certainly something that is justifiable.  

You have a DH and relationship problem.  The bedroom situation is just a symptom. If you were to get your way in the bedroom occupancy layout, and he continues to be unemployed by choice and use you as his meal ticket would you be happy?  

I think you really need to focus on the marriage part, and him stepping up and being an equal partner.  However that looks to you guys is for you to decide, but if the format is he doesn't work because he is lazy and expects you to provide everything, and you think he should be working because you have 4 kids and don't want to be the only one working providing everything... that isn't sustainable and needs to be resolved.

Good luck OP!  

NeverEnough321's picture

Hi! I completely understand when you say the kids deserve their own rooms, but it sounds like it's not exactly working for you at the moment. If they are used to sharing, can you have them share a bigger room? I have done the same for my SO's kids, we live in a 3 bedroom home with 3 kids and cannot afford a bigger home. 

Is there a need to move DS to his own room? It sounds like he is young enough to not really care, whereas the older children might see it as unfair to have a room change. 

DCblended's picture

I meant when he is older, like 3 years old I wanted to move him, because he'll notice

Rags's picture

i'm 6 yrs the elder and my younger brother and I shared a room from the time I was 10 until I was 14.  The number of bedrooms in the house dictated that. It was fine.

Do not tailor your home to the number of hids, manage the space as is logical based on who the full time residents are.  Full timers get priority.  Jockey some room sharing by gender then by age.

Do not over think it.  Make a decison, and enforce that decision.  I recommend trundle beds. They give a ton of flexibiity to accomodate kids who visit an NCP in your home.

Visitor kids are accomodated as best as they can be.  Do not blow up the routine of the full timers due to a visitation schedule.  Keep things as routine as possible.

We never had the yours, mine, ours thing to deal with.  SS-31 was an only child in our marriage.  He is the eldest of 4 all out of wedlock spawn by three different baby mamas for the Spermidiot.  Spermidiot had a series of pieces of the moment some who had kids unrelated to the Spermidiot or his biospawn.  On a couple of occassions they tried to put SS on the floor while the spawn of the GF flavor of the month got beds/bedrooms.  Nope, we had our shark attorney send a cease and decist order informing the SpermClan that that was not acceptable.  Interestingly, the parade of GFs stopped including breeders after a couple of Shark attorney letter head communications to SpermGrandHag and the Spermidiot.  SpermGrandHag would evict the Spermidiots prior breeder of the month GF rather than risk a shit storm regarding the Spermidiot's BKs.  My SS was the ony one of the 4 Spermidiot spawned not raised by the Hag while her idiot serial statory rapist POS son lived rent free in a rental property owned by the Hag and SpermGrandPa.

Oddly, if one of the Spermidiot's baby mamas was living with him, the Hag had no problem. As soon as the Spermidiot would break up with one of his breeding partners, the Hag would threaten to evict the Spermidiot. SHe wanted him knocking up every available womb in the Pac NW. For some odd reason.

DW is the only one of the baby mamas with only one kid. BM #2 had one prior to breeding  her one with the Spermidiot. BM #3 had 2 of the Spermidiot's spawn.

BM#2's first child was violent POS. He would bite SS drawing blood, he threw him out of a 2nd story window when he was a toddler.  SS landed in a rose bush and was all scratched and brused when he returned from that SpermLand visitration. We informed the SpermClat that POS kid was gone or we would crawl so far up their assess legally that the could see out of our eyes.  BM2 left fairly soon after that leaving her Spermidiot spawn with SpermGrandHag to raise.  The Hag paid all of the Spermidiot's CS obligation to the BM's of all 4 of his kids while raising the three youngest in her home while they lied to the courts that the Spermidiot was raising them in the rent free mommy provided oowl breeding shack.

Our preference would have been for SS to be save and comfortable while on SpermClan visitation. He was neither so we kept our collective foot on their throats to do what we could to protect my SS.

Define the rooms, set up the sleeping accordingly, and .... do not over think it.

IMHO of course.


la_dulce_vida's picture

How I would handle it:

DD10 keeps her private bedroom, but it shouldn't be the biggest - maybe the 2nd largest. She is on the cusp of womanhood and actually deserves some privacy.

DD8 and SD7 share the largest bedroom that is not the master bedroom. Try to divide the space, if possible. If SD7 is a little snot, she is disciplined and/or DD8 can sleep in DD10's room on occasion.

The baby gets the smallest bedroom for the time being.

DCblended's picture

Thanks for that but SD7 has major boundary issues and always wants to bother people so I'm going to stick to my original recommendation that once our boy is 2.5 or 3 he will get his own room and she will get a curtained off room until he gets a job. That's over a year to find a job,  should be motivation enough. 

Rags's picture

As for % distribution of bills.  We have never split them.   I am usually the primary earner though that has shifted a couple of times over the years.  Since day one all income is marital income regardless of who earns it.

DW was a SAHM the first 3 years we were married. She was also a full time college student.  When SS-5 started kindergarten (it was full time in our school district) DW intended to start spending time with some of the neighborhood moms and do house based projects. She made it two weeks.  She was so bored that she took a part time job. It was transparent to SS. She would walk him to the bus stop (about 50ft from our house) and wait with him until he got on the bus.  She was at the bus stop when he got off the bus at the end of his school day.

She worked at a care dealership in the business office. The dealership was about a 10min drive from our house.

The pittance in CS was just added to our family income.  

DW has been closing the income gap over the past 6 years since we returned from 8yrs of Expat adventures related to my career. She did volunteer work during our Expat years as the CFO or treasurer of a few non profit organizations.   This kept herm resume active so she could return to her career when we ended our Expat time.

For the past 6mos, she has been our sole marital income.  This is the 3rd dime that has been the case in our 29+ year marriage. The first time was for a year in the early 00s.  The second time was for 2yrs when I was unable to re-engage my career due to COVID.  My role ended in Mar 2019.  I was offered a new role in May 2021 which I held until June 2023.  

We do not have the strain of having kids. We have been empty nesters since SS-31 launched in 2011 when he was 18.

With the exception of my 3 periods of career stall, our marital income has been a joint choice made based on opportuntiy and what we considered the best for our family at any given time.   My three periods of career stall have been primariy driven by events outside of my control.  When I am between full time opportunities I do consulting work that is extremely lucrative when I am cative but is of short duration and intermittent in nature.  During peak COVID, DW demanded I remain quarantined.  I have an  autoimmune disease that scares her to death.  So my work opportunities wer limited 2019-2021. 

I would have no problem delivering food, managing restaurants (I owned several in my first career... long, long ago), or other non career roles.  DW is adamant that I not expose myself to huge numbers of the general public.  So, I cook, clean, shop, do car maintenance, laundry, work on professional training,  network, and work a job search like a full time job.

DW nor I avoid work. We collaborate on our life together, our careers, and we adjust to variables.



Harry's picture

DH should be working.  Everybody is looking for workers.  I would not be supporting DH kids when my kids are kicked to the curb.  Since DH isn't bringing money into the household his options doesn't count.  Remember the golden rule. The one with the gold makes the rules