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Issues with step son and his mother

Loribeth5678's picture

I am having issues with my 8yo step son and his mother. My ss has horrible behavior! He is terrible to my husband and I mainly because his mother tells him lies about us so he favors her. She does crazy things at his school and in our community as well as torturing us via email and text on a daily basis. We don’t respond to her to attempt to keep the peace. But, she is a raging psychopath! My ss is now mimicking her behaviors of lies and deceit! He causes problems with my children and his behavior is so out of control I find myself being a person I never thought I could be.  I yell and get upset and I’m not like that’s with my own children.  I don’t know how to deal with his behavior and unfortunately being crazy isn’t illegal so we have no legal recourse to take with his mother. Does anyone have any advice or tools to give me to help deal with this situation. Thanks for listening. 

tog redux's picture

Google Parental Alienation.  It's emotional child abuse, but few therapists or courts recognize that.

Loribeth5678's picture

Wow! Just read up a bit on it that’s EXACTLY what she is doing! Do you have any experience with this or could you offer any advice?

tog redux's picture

BM alienated my SS entirely for several years. He's back in our lives now, but he's still alienated.

It's frankly almost impossible to fight in the court system.

Loribeth5678's picture

We have tried going through the court. She even had DCYF remove custody from her for a while but they gave him right back. Court is a lost cause unfortunately we know that. 

dysfunctionally_blended's picture

PAS is so hard to prove. You know it's happening because you deal with it every day but in the courts eyes a mother can do no wrong, sadly. 

My advise - disengage. Remove yourself physically and emotionally. Let your DH handle BM and skid. The more you get involved the worse it will get, believe me.

It doesn't get better, you just get better at avoiding it. 

Loribeth5678's picture

Thank you so much for this advice! This is the best advice I’ve heard! Most people tell me just keep trying to love him and that will fix everything! Ummm no that has only made it worse! The more she sees him liking me the more she ups her “game” it’s a never ending cycle! Next day he comes over I’m disengaging! Thank you! 

dysfunctionally_blended's picture

Ha that will fix nothing!

It's sad to disengage at times but I tell myself that this is what they want. If they want differently I am here but until then I will no longer subject myself to the ridiculousness.

You will see. All the things BM bitches about and takes it upon herself to outdo you will come forth two fold once you disengage. But sit back and smile because soon it will fade. No reaction. And people like that NEED and thrive on a reaction. 

It has been years for me and at this point BM has all but fizzled out. Or at least as far as I know LOL! 

Loribeth5678's picture

I just want to make sure I understand 100% what you mean by disengage. Do I say hello do I speak to him at all? Or just disengaging during parenting matters?  Your all making me feel so much better! I was at such a low point this morning you have no idea! 

Lndsy747's picture

Totally up to you there are many levels of disengagement depending on your relationship and interactions with SS. 

I'd say most on here that have disengaged are polite and treat kids as an acquaintance or a coworker they're not huge fans of.

Lndsy747's picture

"Most people tell me just keep trying to love him and that will fix everything!"

Only works when dealing with normal people and if we were we probably wouldn't be on this site.

tankh21's picture

What does your DH do when SS misbehaves? Are their consequences for his actions? It's best to disengage that is what I have done and it does work.

Loribeth5678's picture

He try’s to discipline him and he basically either laughs at him or venimently denies any wrong doing. Can never admit wrong doing even if we see him in the act! Then he just goes back to his moms and she talks horribly about us, slanders us to his school and the community. It’s completely embarrassing. I know I can’t control her but any advice on how to not let the things she says bother me sooo much? 

Aniki's picture

You definitely need to disengage and let your DH parent his son. Keep SS away from your children. Don't EVER be alone with SS.

Also, I strongly suggest that your DH moves all contact from BM to one of those sites that keeps a record of contact, like Our Family Wizard. Block BM from email immediately.

Loribeth5678's picture

Someone was just telling me about our family wizard! We have blocked her # so she can only email but it’s still out of control and she uses their son to send messages back and forth or has him call us to set up scheduling of things which is not an 8 year olds responsibility!  How do I not let the crazy things she does affect me? She talks about us to anyone who will listen the school, his soccer coaches our entire community! It’s so embarrassing!

dysfunctionally_blended's picture

Disengagement for me means all parenting is done by the bio parents. Everything. I only step in when the behavior directly affects myself or my bios and their parents are not handling it. Which is rare and usually I take that up with my SO first and allow him time to parent (he does parent well which is why this works). 

I am polite. Same as I would be with a neighbor kid.

There are times that my SO will ASK me for help, such as a scheduling conflict. But the key word is ASK! It is my choice, never expected.

For comparison, I was highly engaged in the beginning. I felt that by creating a blended family it was my duty. But the more involved I was the more HCBM took dire steps to sabotage. She was hell bent on making sure everyone was miserable and telling anyone who would listen that the misery was my fault. The direct affect of that was nasty skids. 

Today - HCBM has nothing to work with. Recently she has begun to ask for tasks to be completed by us that prior to my disengagement was a complete no. "I am the mother you are not. You have no business doing xyz. How dare you" type of reactions.

When she now asks the answer is, "you are the mother"! 

It isn't easy to be disengaged but it does get better. I no longer dread skid days because I can just get up and remove myself. I don't dread how skids will react because it doesn't affect me any longer. And I have zero dealings with HCBM. We were out one day and she walked past. My SO asked why I didn't say hello - I actually didn't notice it was her! That is how removed I am. 




Loribeth5678's picture

I so envy you that you are already at that point! I had the police at my house twice yesterday....just to check on him. She was driving by beeping her horn screaming his name to try and get him to come come out! I’m at a loss! Who does that!? 

I was the same in the beginning trying to blend our families into one big happy family....I give up it’s not going to happen and yesterday just proved it to me!

thank you so much for your advice. I’m putting it all to good use! Hopefully I will have the same result as you! 

Rags's picture

I love this.

I think I would call this the Shit on the Shoe approach.  You only notice shit when you step in it and then you just scrape it off of your shoe and move on. 

Scraping off the shit can take many forms but it is quick, effective, does not take up space in your head or more than a fraction of a moment of your time.