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Stepmom Burnout... Anyone else?

luv2laff's picture

What the hell is stepmom burnout? (Taken from -

It’s what occurs when a stepmom has gone too far in the “giving” direction and has lost her way.

Just look at any stepmom who hasn’t learned to say “no” and you’ll see it on her face, etched in her frown lines.

She’s the stepmom who’s lost her smile. The stepmom who’s feeling resentful that she picks up ALL the slack at home and gets nothing in return.

She’s constantly stressed out and on edge. She’s forgotten who she is. She’s forgotten what makes her laugh and how light she used to feel. She doesn’t like who she’s become.

Her emotional tank is on empty and if she doesn’t do something about it soon, her family may fall apart.

The road to hell is paved with good intentions. We want to fix our families. We want to save everyone from themselves. We are the never-ending helpers.


I couldnt have said it better myself, or described how I feel any better... Sometimes it feels like there is no way out... i guess for me talking to people who are going through the same things is helpful and somehow makes me feel better.

I have done so much and have gotten so little in return that my life feels like an empty shell.. anyone else wanna share?

pissedoff205's picture

Yes, I will. I have been married for 5 months and I have lost my spirit. I told my DH the other day that I was not happy. I was not happy anymore. I lost my smile and that get up and go spirit. I feel drained of all emotions. My SD ripped me a new one Wednesday night and my DH just stood there and listen to her and then I replied to her a few times. Afterwards he just asked us for a solution. I married a boy in a man's body. SD is 20 and told me she was not going anywhere or giving me what I want. I just don't understand how he could just sit there and let her talk to me like that and asked me afterwards why did I go in there an pick on her. So I scheduled us to see a marriage counselor then we are going to the minister to talk to him and if that dont work, I AM DONE. I believe in laboring in something but that is too much. He has let her chip away at the love I have for him. It is all about POWER with her. So I know what you mean. Draining and it makes you wonder if it is worth it. SD told DH she was not going to let me stress him out and kill him, he was all she got. Talking about an Oscar performance!!! Tears and all. Talking about he was going to have to call the police if she stayed in the house with me. He saw nothing wrong with her behavior. The bottom line is she dont want to share DH with my BD (13) and me. She wants to continue to do him how she wants. She is his only child and he raised her. I stand a chance because I believe in prayer but when the good Lord knows I have had enough HE will fix it for me. So with that being said, being a stepmom will drain every ounce of anything out of you if you are trying to make your marriage/relationship work. You have to be able to labor in it until you get tired.

MarriedaBallessWonder's picture

I have SM burnout and Husband burn out. I wish I could leave for 6 months and then see how I felt about it all. Sad

ecgirl's picture

This is absolutely how I felt a few weeks ago, thanks for sharing, I wish I had had this to give to my DH when we talked about it as I had trouble expressing it to him.

MaidJane's picture

I told my SO for the umpteenth time this morning that I am lost, I dont want to go on a "family holiday" I want to go on a "us" holiday where I can feel like me again.
It fell, as usual, on deaf ears but it helps more than I can say, to know there are so many of us out there dealing with the same S***, different pile.

Crazymommaof4's picture

We are not married yet and I'm burned out! Also second guessing taking that step! The BM lacks in everything doesn't do her part I care for feed,help with homework, make sure she has everything she needs, yet it's all overlooked as if it magically happens on its own!! We moved in together in feb and I'm wondering if we should have done something different....I'm learning all my feelings are shared with so many others I had no clue it was like this I've never been with anyone who had kids before.

Ava 84's picture

that is exactly how I feel. How can I try to start a family when this blended family isn't even working?

OhGolly's picture

This is exactly what I've been feeling! SD10 has moved in on two separate occasions now because she does better in school with us. Why does she do better?? Because I work my ass off to help her!!! Her mother could do the same thing, but doesn't. She even said to me once "she (SD) has to realize that shes not the only kid I have and I can't spend hours helping her in the evenings just because she doesn't understand what the teacher teaches". I have other kids and I help her. I'm beginning to resent SD for this. Part of me wants to quit working so hard and let her fail, but I know that isn't fair to her. I just feel like if her mother doesn't put in any effort, why should I?

Crazymommaof4's picture

I know what you mean! My bf and I have his daughter 6 and my two boys 14&5. Her mother does nothing then when she does pick her up she buys her love with gifts so she's mother of the year and I'm the one doing everything! We are suppose to marry in feb and idk if I want to now!! I want to be with him not the live in nanny for a useless BM

Bosley3325's picture

Wow. My fiance has come to believe that I'm a selfish resentful person and that there is no one else in the world that feels this way. It's an uphill battle as a step mom (as I'm not officially that yet share the responsibilities of such). His daughter fights everything that I try to do. And so does he. If I'm taking her to and from school he best support the SIMPLE rules I put in place. I believe that one should go to school neat and not unkempt. That there are certain places for certain things, and as an 8 year old you are expected to do your chores (i.e. make your bed, help unload the dishes). There is no play time until the homework is done.

When I say "no tv for that attitude" he can't turn the tv on and sit her in front of it and then expect me to take her to and from school and for her to listen to me. And when we have children is he going to continue to undermine me?!

wub901's picture

Most probably yeah if he isn't prepared to parent his the daughter he has now then how can you expect him to change and parent any kids that you could have ive have been with my ex who I used to tell the kids no and she would just let th em do it anyway if I was you I would take this as a warning shot of what it could be like if you had kids with him.

My SD 13 does what ever she can to manipulate her mother including texting her to drive 8 km to take her a drink she constantly winds her younger brother up so that he gets told off just last night she was winding the dog up and after both of us had told her she was trying to get to the dog to wind her brother up so that he got the blame and not her.

Bosley3325's picture

You have a valid point. And trust me that fear has crossed my mind. When we were just dating I didn't think about these type of things but now I'm starting to realize I may have to raise my fiancé , his daughter , and our kids that are on the way! Lol.

I do hope for the best. It's a constant conversation that we have.

Ava 84's picture

I just joined this site as I feel like I am loosing it and just reading what you all have wrote has made me feel not so alone. So thank you.

I feel like the resentment that I have long pushed down inside me (towards my SS) is finally boiling over. When my SS acts out towards me and says hurtful things, my husband says "it's not him - it's his mother feeding him bs." I just feel more mad. No kidding it's not him, but that doesn't make it feel any better, or help me handle it anymore. And I don't see his BM, I just see my SS.

For the past 4 years I have spent 10s of thousands of dollars (of my own family money cuz my husband had to file for bankruptcy because of the debt his ex-wife left him when SHE filed for bankruptcy instead of splitting their debt) on lawyers, and specialists, and clothes and childsupport, all for a child who I see 4 days a month, and we spend those days trying to teach him manners, or to use the potty, or whatever else his BM should be teaching him. Than he tells me he hates me one minute, and tries to curl up and cuddle with me the next. I feel like a damn ping pong ball when he is around and I have found myself not looking forward to him coming for the weekend. Actually, I feel like I have started dreading it.

wowmommy's picture

I protected myself early on from burnout and boy am I. Glad!
I saw the signs and stopped it early.

My DH would try that "he has the final say shit with me. Yup. You have the final say and All the work. If you cannot back up the rules I put in place than take your kids with you when you go out.

My schedule doesn't revolve around your kids. Or vice versa. If they decide not to come one weekend then they just miss the aquarium, the zoo, or skating. Part of being in a stepfamily is sometimes missing events.

I don't. Love his kids as my own cuz they aren't. I like them for the kids they are. I treat them well. I want them to spend as much time as they can with my kids and I'm okay with not being my stepkids mom. I'm an adult in their lives who cares.

wowmommy's picture

I have a post on here about a comment made to me.

Some expected me to take SKs and raise them. Problem is DH isn't working, doesn't cook/clean, and is the first one out the door to hang with his friends. I said hell no. And I meant it.

sunbeam0901's picture

:jawdrop: THIS is exactly how I've felt lately. I almost feel relieved knowing I'm not alone with these feelings and I'm not fcuking crazy!

Not gonna stop me from self-medication, however. Vodka & sprite, anyone?