Am I about to be unreasonable. Genuinely can't tell. Help!

(34 Posts)
madonnawhore Sun 14-Oct-12 22:48:13

Background: I've been with DP (BF?) for two years. We don't live together but I spend a huge amount of time with him and his DD, we've been on lots of holidays with her, very involved in each other's lives, etc.

I have never met his ex (the mother of his DD). She walked out on him when their DD was two. From what I've seen of the way she handles their 50/50 split I'm not massively impressed with her parenting. She's always asking my DP to take on extra nights during the week and extra weekends. She doesn't offer to swap, she's happy to just forfeit her time with her DD when she's got a better offer. To give you an example; she had her DD for a total of three weekends between the beginning of June and the middle of September. They'd only been back into the 'regular' routine for one fortnight before she was asking my DP to have their DD for an extra weekend because it was her birthday hmm.

Obviously my DP loves the opportunity to spend extra time with his DD but I dunno, it's hard. Anyway, suffice it to say, I'm not that interested in being friendly with her. And so far it hasn't even come up as an issue.

But it's DP's DD's birthday soon. His ex has planned a party and my DP is going with his mum. I know that his ex's new partner will be there but so far there's been no mention of me being there.

To be honest I'd prefer not to go and have to be false with her and pretend that I don't think she's really selfish. But on the other hand if DP's DD asked me to come I absolutely would.

But the thing is I wonder whether DP might be keeping me at arm's length from the party. He just hasn't mentioned it and I don't know whether to be offended that he's not said I should come along, even though I don't want to go anyway. And how allowed is he to invite me anyway since it's his ex organising the party and not him?

I realise I may be being really childish. I just can't really get any perspective on this so I'd welcome others' points of view.

AIBU for wanting to be invited even though I don't want to go?

Is my DP BU for not inviting me?

Or is his ex BU for not inviting me?

Or AIBU to expect to be invited at all despite the fact that I'm very close to his DD and have shared beds with her in holiday, shared tents camping, pick her up from school sometimes, etc?

savemefromrickets Mon 29-Oct-12 02:20:57

I had a party invite once from DP's ex. It was retracted at the last minute so I went for a bikini wax instead which was probably infinitely more pleasant.

MsMadelineashton Sun 28-Oct-12 02:34:50

Me either brdgirl. And I do doubt that its every night...

I think possibly op is directing anger at this because she hasn't dealt with her other feelings over do having a child with ex. Which is normal in my opinion but not that healthy maybe sad

brdgrl Sat 27-Oct-12 20:12:19

sorry, quote fail!

brdgrl Sat 27-Oct-12 20:12:03

Yes she finishes work at 3.30 and usuallly gets home about 6 DSD is 14 (just) and gets the bus home, she gets in about 4.15 DSS is 9, he gets picked up from school by his grandmother (ex's DM) who walks him home and stays with him till DSD gets in, then leaves them too it*

So the kids are on their own for a bit less than two hours every afternoon? Is this really a problem...? I admit, I don't see it. If she were working during that time, would you still object? Or is it that she is using that time to run her errands, do other things? [shrugs]

flixy102 Sat 27-Oct-12 17:34:03

Madonna I get you I get you I get you!! I adore my DH but sometimes it's hard when I think of all the 'firsts' he has done with his ex, he had a child with her first, lived with her first etc etc. My DH gets super jealous if I even hint that I've been somewhere/done something with an ex and I want to scream at him 'but I have a constant reminder that you had an ex!!' (Which of course isn't helpful and doesn't reflect how I feel about my DSD).

My DH is lovely and reminds me of all the things that he has done for the first time with me (holidays/marriage etc) which helps bring it all into perspective. The poster below is right, the ex is in the past but you are both his present and his future. smile

ProphetOfDoom Sat 27-Oct-12 17:23:04

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

madonnawhore Sat 27-Oct-12 17:05:43

So I went to the party and it was fine. Everyone was very civil and polite and on their best behaviour. No issues whatsoever.

But I feel like complete shit. I think maybe it's because DP and I don't have kids together. But I just felt so terrible looking at this woman he has a child with. And they were talking about their DD and this whole birthday party situation was happening because of their child. I dunno it just made me feel horrible watching them parent together.

And I KNOW that I need to grow up and get over myself but am I normal for feeling like this? It really, really hurts in fact. I want us to have children together and a family. And instead he's done it with someone else.

I just hate, hate, hate that I had to spend the whole afternoon in a room with a woman he used to sleep with and tell her he loved her and had a child with. I really fucking resent that. It's not like he ever has to sit in a room with my ex and try not to imagine us having sex or picture how our lives were together or anything.

Ugh, I'm probably not making much sense. Can someone just please give me a slap, or tell me it gets easier, or that I'm not a monstrous woman child?

smilingthroughgrittedteeth Sat 20-Oct-12 11:37:48

Yes she finishes work at 3.30 and usuallly gets home about 6 angry

DSD is 14 (just) and gets the bus home, she gets in about 4.15

DSS is 9, he gets picked up from school by his grandmother (ex's DM) who walks him home and stays with him till DSD gets in, then leaves them too it angry she lives 2 roads away so is close by if needed but quite frankly the whole family are a bunch of selfish morons who only care about themselves.

We have discussed applying for full custody but DSD is adament that she wants to stay where she is and DSS would be miserable without his sister, they have been through a lot due to DP and ex having a rather difficult break up and both have behaved pretty badly in the past to try and hurt each other which has often put the children in the middle. DP thankfully has mended his ways after several good slaps from me but she still uses the children to score points and manipulate DP, for this reason we have decided to respect DSS's decision and just monitor and support the children as much as we can, its not easy or ideal.

We aren't in a position to move closer as DP's dad has alzhemiers and my grandparents both have health issues that mean we need to stay close by.

We have suggested we have them every weekend but DSD was opposed to that because she wouldn't be able to socialise with friends, so we said every other weekend but ex refused that because of the amount of travelling involved which is fair enough, its 2hrs to the half way point where they meet (which is why we do one weekend a month which we make the bank holiday ones on those months and ALL half terms whether its 1 or 2 weeks).

I do sometimes wonder what DP was thinking when he married her, according to his family and best friend she has always been a selfish cow but agree with whoever it was that ssid people change, my ex and I were great together to start but 2yrs into the relationship we were at loggerheads all the time, I'd grown and become more independant and stubborn and he had become more controlling (not abusive), the person I was at the start of that relationship would not have been someone my now DP was attracted to.

madonnawhore Sat 20-Oct-12 11:09:31

Good point NotADisneyMum. To be fair my ex was an emotionally abusive sociopath. I am grateful every day that I didn't have children with him!

NotaDisneyMum Sat 20-Oct-12 10:06:06

madonna It's a lot easier to understand if you have a bonkers difficult ex yourself!

I had DD with a man who has proven to be unreasonable, selfish, controlling and insecure. When I married him we were both very different people smile

I know why I married my ex, and understand why DP married his - at that time, neither if us would have been attracted to each other wink

madonnawhore Sat 20-Oct-12 09:14:04

It's infuriating. Why the hell did these women bother having children?

Especially in my DP's ex's case. They have 50:50 so she gets exactly the same amount of free time as he does. But somehow it's that much harder for her and she deserves more time to herself hmm.

Also, does anyone ever get angry at their DP's for having children with these selfish women?

In DP's specific circumstances I do sometimes wonder what the hell he was thinking and how on earth he ever thought it would turn out any other way.

I realise that's very unfair and I would never say it out loud. I do adore DP and his DD. I'm only saying it on here because it's anonymous and I can let my secret horrible mean side out 'safely'.

madelineashton Sat 20-Oct-12 09:03:52

She actually finishes work at 3.30 but the kids stay home alone while she has plans...? And that's an "always" rather than a sometimes? Really!?

smilingthroughgrittedteeth Sat 20-Oct-12 08:22:53

Oh god the holiday thing is a massive issue here to.

We live the other end of the country so only see the dsc one weekend a month and have them every half term, because DP uses his holiday up for the half terms it means he doesn't have enough to split the summer holidays 50:50 so has 2 weeks off to spend with them, ex kicks off every year about how she can't find childcare for the week she considers should be ours.

It really pisses me off because the same happens every year DP gets guilted into having them for the 3rd week so we juggle childcare (DP works nights and I'm a nanny and work 12hr days) which mostly means a mixture of the kids entertaining themselves while DP sleeps all day and youngest DSS coming to work with me (try to only do this once or twice as don't want to take advantage of my bosses good will) BUT here's the problem for her 3 weeks she leaves DSD (just 14) to look after DSS while she works/goes shopping/goes out to dinner and then books her holiday for the 3 weeks we have them and swans off abroad, my SC are lovely children and it makes me furious that DSD gets treated like unpaid childcare just because their mother can't be bothered to spend time with her children and considers it her right to have a childfree holiday angry

Just to add its not like she never gets time to herself, DSD looks after DSS after school and cooks them both tea (ex finishes work at 3.30 but goes shopping/to get her hair or nails done/cinema after work and palms them off to who ever she can at the weekends so she can go out friday and saturday nights.

I've learnt not to be so vocal in my opinions of ex to DP because it puts him in the middle and causes arguments between us, I rant on here or to my mum she never offers an opinion but listens and doesn't judge

Cloverhoney Wed 17-Oct-12 13:14:16

@madelineashton - loving the AA quote - it is entirely appropriate! There should be Stepmums Anonymous....I'd go...

We have a similar thing - supposed to split hols - this summer BM arranged a fortnight abroad with SC - she asked us to keep them until 2 days before she left and pick them up the day she got back. We had them the rest of the summer. She then got mad when she found out we'd booked them (and our own kids) into a summer activity programme for a few days when we both had to work. Yep....the brass neck...

God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change...you bet!

madonnawhore Wed 17-Oct-12 12:44:46

Thanks. It's just so hard to let it go. Every time my DP tells me he's agreed to have his DD that weekend, even though it's not his weekend to have her, and I do the maths in my head and work out that it means her mum's only spent four evenings with her out of three weeks. I just think 'how can she be okay with spending so little time with her daughter?' And 'how has she got the brass neck to keep taking all that money off him each month when she has her DD so little?' What sort of person behaves that way and feels no remorse? Whenever DP mentions that he thinks she should spend more time with DD, he gets a massive argument about how she needs time to herself and he's out of order for trying to make her feel guilty, etc. Nothing about their DD. No acknowledgement that he might have a point. Just it's all about her her her.

I just really dislike her and I've never even met her. I don't like feeling like this.

madelineashton Tue 16-Oct-12 22:54:48

loving step mum grinblush

madelineashton Tue 16-Oct-12 22:54:03

Well. Madonna, that is the 50,000 dollar question. It has taken me 5 years and an estranged dsd and I'm still not really over getting angry at how her Mum raises her. But I am 100 times better than I was and as time goes on I realise more and more that it is wasted energy. All that it serves to do is make you bitter and sad.
The age old "grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change" applies to nothing better than a step parenting situation IMO.
Thing is, you only really see one side properly. It certainly seems like she is a shit Mum and that you would be a better one. But what can you do about that? Nothing. Just be a living step mum and forget point scoring and having to prove that you're better. You just ARE, but she will never see it, and in all likeliness nor will the child. And I suppose that is right.
Please try not to waste your energy.

imtheonlyone Tue 16-Oct-12 13:41:15

I know what you mean .... We've been through similar! Every holiday she expects us to have the boys at least half and normally more yet she appears to spend very little of her holiday time with the boys when they're off school. This year she has had 8 days so far and that actually includes Christmas where we've just realised that she has worked it so she has then the bank holidays but we have them on the working days so we have to take the holiday! She has always been like this. On her weekends my DP will always get a text from her asking if he wants them for a day - it's like she can't cope or doesn't care or can't be bothered .... It is hugely frustrating! Personally I want to spend as much holiday time with my DCs as possible but she really doesn't! 8 days over a year .... What does she do with all her other leave days? It is frustrating - I've learnt to let it go a bit .... It's her loss at the end of the day and frustrating as it is (and hard work as it is for us) we're happy to have the boys. I know my DP is happy to see them whenever we can.

It's hard not to know what she's taking the piss though - does she genuinely need our help to have the boys cos she is working or is she 'busy' with her other life?? We don't know. Sometimes we accommodate and others we don't.

Just be the best SM you can be, welcome them when they're with you and make them feel welcome and loved. They are only kids once, when they grow up it will be different. I'm sure his boys will want to come less when they're older .... They'll have things on or want to be with their friends at home.

It's her loss if she doesn't want to spend time with them - frustrating for you I know - but her loss - you sound like you're doing a great job grin

madonnawhore Tue 16-Oct-12 11:22:33

See, madeleineashton, my issue has always been that dumping her DD for almost the whole summer to piss around with her new BF and their mates ISN'T having her DD's best interests at heart. That's why I have such a low opinion of her.

I'm quite sure she couldn't give two shits about me. As long as me and my DP keep changing our plans to fit in with her schedule and whatever's going on in her relationship, I'm sure she thinks everything's hunky dory.

This is a bit of a tangent now, but how do I stop getting so worked up and angry about the way she behaves? After all it isn't my problem to solve really.

imtheonlyone Tue 16-Oct-12 10:42:08

Good luck smile I'm pleased for you that you got invited. As you say, it's for your DSD and that's what matters. And yes, we should be thinking about the little ones here.

I do appreciate that. I don't really know why my DP feels so weird about it - he does like to compartmentalise (is that a word??!!!) his life in many ways! He rarely mixes work with his private life and as I've said, it was a long time before I met his XDP. I know he loved her dearly and she did the nasty on him in a big way (was sleeping around in the day when he was at work, swinging websites and messaging random men at all times of the day) he was heartbroken. Also, this invitation is out of the ordinary because she is normally a complete bitch to him and has plenty to bitch about me in the past!! I know it should be all friendly and grown up but alas is rarely the case!

Maybe he doesn't want the two of us talking .... I know things, she knows things ... Dunno!!! But I can understand that I wouldn't particularly want my XH'S new partner at my kids' parties ..... I can see why that makes a mother feel uncomfortable.

madelineashton Mon 15-Oct-12 21:48:42

You hit invited, great. Sounds like mum has her daughters best interests at heart. This could be the foundation of a really positive relationship model for her.

madonnawhore Mon 15-Oct-12 21:04:20

So I got invited and now I'm going. It would be weird for his DD if I was the only one of 'the adults' not there. So I guess I'll just suck it up.

This is hard huh?!

madelineashton Mon 15-Oct-12 07:59:03

It sounds incredibly smug and self righteous but I think that we should be thinking about what is best for the child in all circumstances rather than protecting mums or dads ego.

madelineashton Mon 15-Oct-12 07:57:25

Imtheonlyone, why is your dp so uncomfortable with it? I mean, of course it's a little cringey but the way his ex is being sounds like something I could only dream of. Well, saying that, my DH's ex used to be very very pally with me and invite me to loads of things. Only to spend the event launching passive aggressive verbal grenades at me angry but I invite my dds sm to things and dd loves it. We're not "friends" as such and I think my ex does find it icky (probably in case I tell her of past indiscretions that I'm sure he'd rather she stayed in the dark about!!) but the look on my dds face with all her favourite grown ups at her birthday or play or whatever is worth it.
Unlike with OP though, we all met through pick ups and drop offs so there was no tension by the time it got to the birthdays.

imtheonlyone Mon 15-Oct-12 07:18:00

I realise that I didn't really answer your questions!!
I would defo not feel bad towards DP - in his mind it is just weird, has no bearing on your importance in his life - just a strange situation to have you at a party where his ex and her family are there.

As for the ex - whether the split was amicable, mutual, her leaving, him leaving - I think it's hard as the ex to accept another woman in your DCs life - I know that even though I have my DSC I find it hard to imagine what my XH's new partner is like with MY boys sad. They really like her and talk about her but I find t really hard. And if I had a party for my DCs and invited their father, I wouldn't want his new partner there.

I hope that helps - it isn't easy, but as the previous poster said - YANBU just human!!

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