When you really dislike your DSC's mother and see her traits in them and it affects the way you feel about them?

(96 Posts)
madonnawhore Fri 15-Mar-13 17:34:13

How do you deal with it?

I feel like a horrible, shitty person.

exoticfruits Sat 16-Mar-13 16:06:55

I never became a step mother, but I came close and it irritates me no end that you are expected to be a voiceless, servant in your own home. DP and the exW are supposed to sort it out and you are supposed to say , 'yes sir, no sir, - of course I can do extra meals on Thurs and tell my friends they can't visit- we have no spare room'. You have every right to be in the planning stage.
If I had been a step mother I certainly wasn't staying in a box and I would have been doing things with the DSC without her father sometimes.

TobyLerone Sat 16-Mar-13 16:15:07

But the 'inclusion' is the responsibility of the partner, not the partner's XW.

exoticfruits Sat 16-Mar-13 16:20:37

The XW needs to realise that the partner will have to agree everything with his new partner before it is finalised.

TobyLerone Sat 16-Mar-13 16:22:05

Still not her responsibility.

And absolutely no reason for the OP to be horrible about a child.

TobyLerone Sat 16-Mar-13 16:22:57

Or, more accurately, no excuse for her to be horrible.

exoticfruits Sat 16-Mar-13 16:27:13

No excuse for her to be horrible but it is pretty pointless them making an arrangement and then the step mother having to explain that it is impossible and she could have told them at the time, had they bothered to ask.

TobyLerone Sat 16-Mar-13 16:36:50

Again, the OP's partner's fault. There is no way I would make plans with my XH's new partner. It's up to him to make sure the plans are suitable.

exoticfruits Sat 16-Mar-13 16:39:02

Just as well I never became the step mother then!

Bonsoir Sat 16-Mar-13 16:43:11

It's also up to the exW not to make unreasonable requests.

mumandboys123 Sat 16-Mar-13 18:06:36

but how do you define 'unreasonable'? I don't personally consider it 'unreasonable' that my ex has the children if I am unable to (work, emergency, desire to have a weekend away with friends) but would always do my best to make plans based on usual contact arrangements. However, my plans are not always controlled entirely by me and sometimes a clash is unavoidable. I don't, in those circumstances, expect to have to consult with the latest partner to find out if that fits in with her social calendar. I expect my ex to make a decision and stick with it - if he says no, then I will make alternative arrangements but he is an adult and should be allowed to make a decision to have his children in his home for a couple of extra nights, surely?

and why is it that step parents never seem to see their home as being a second home to for their step children but rather see them as some kind of inconvenience that need to be accommodated rather than welcomed into a home environment? surely children shouldn't have to 'ask' to be part of their NRP's home?

Theydeserve Sat 16-Mar-13 18:49:43

OP - complete respect that you recognise there is an issue and that you ask for help to deal with it.

mumandboys123 - completely agree with your last post.

All I can say OP is please find a way to deal with it and not affect the children.

My then 5 yr old told me that they knew the fathers new partner did not like DC. I said how do you figure that -
"well, there are no pictures of us ( DC and sibling ) in the house but her kids are everywhere,
"we are not allowed any toys and clothes in the house" ( I know that because what ever I send comes back for me to wash!)
"when we give daddy a present it stays here and he never takes them to her home
" it is not our home, it is hers and * and ****"
"when she smiles at us, her smile does not reach her eyes"
"she calls me darling but does not mean it"

I cried that night, how can a 5 and 3 yr old be exposed to that and know, their presence is barely tolerated. The hours he spends with them go down every week and the tenuous hold on their relationship diminishes by the day- for what a jealous, selfish woman and a pathetic weak father who can not learn his DCs are his priority not his new ***.

exoticfruits Sat 16-Mar-13 18:53:35

That is exactly the problem, mumandboys123! You really can't have it both ways! If I had a step child they would be part of my family and they would not only have me, they would have my mother, brothers, cousins etc.It would be their second home and they wouldn't be an inconvenience! However I am not paid staff just ready to fit in with whatever is arranged- as second family I expect to be in on the arrangements, in fact it would be more sensible to bypass DP and deal directly with me. Of course I would take them in an emergency but I would expect to be the one phoned and asked- not someone that has to be put up with, but the ex would prefer to pretend I didn't exist and that the house fairy cooks the meal, makes the beds up, helps with homework etc!
If you want the DCs to have a second home you have to acknowledge that there are other people living in it!

Bonsoir Sat 16-Mar-13 18:55:56

mumandboys123 - I am a stepmother and for many years my DSSs did 50:50 between our home and their mother's home. This is their home, but they do have to ask if they want to come here at times that are unspecified, for the very good reason that we do also have a life that does not involve them and if they show up at short notice or swap days around, we won't be able to accommodate them. We aren't hanging about with nothing better to do than wait for them when they aren't here!

DSS1 has chosen to live with us full time now, and that is fine because we all agreed to it. DSS2 continues with 50:50 and that is fine too.

exoticfruits Sat 16-Mar-13 18:56:42

That is entirely different Theydeserve- I doubt whether the new partner wants or needs to be consulted- she obviously has no intention of getting involved and wants everyone in their own compartment.

Bonsoir Sat 16-Mar-13 19:01:12

"but he is an adult and should be allowed to make a decision to have his children in his home for a couple of extra nights, surely?"

As an adult, he should know that he should consult his wife or live-in partner before agreeing to sort of visit or social arrangement.

exoticfruits Sat 16-Mar-13 19:05:17

If you live with someone they are not a paid employee that you 'inform' - you are a family to be consulted.

Bonsoir Sat 16-Mar-13 19:11:27

Let me give you a word of warning, mumandboys123. My DP's exW thinks the way you do and hasn't always kept to the schedule for weekends, holidays etc (we decide it every September for the academic year). We had many arguments about this over the years with her - we wanted to keep the schedule set in stone so we could make our own plans but she wanted flexibility. Not that she ever wanted to return the favour - the flexibility was hers and hers alone.

The DSSs are nearly 18 and nearly 16. They have got completely fed up with their mother being unreliable and taking unilateral decisions about nights out, weekends away etc without consulting anyone (them or us). DSS1 has come to live with us and DSS2 is chomping at the bit to do so. DCs don't like having their schedules messed around to suit their mother's personal agenda anymore than exH's new partners do!

mumandboys123 Sat 16-Mar-13 19:28:30

Oh dear Bonsoir, you have completely misunderstood me. I doubt very much that my children will be going to live with my ex at any time in the near future because they would be in the way and he wouldn't let it happen. It would affect his social life far too much and he might actually have to take some responsibility for his children.

But regardless, I work damn hard in the week and I support our three children on my own because my ex refuses to pay maintenance and is able to get away with it because he is self employed (and of course, his various partners support him in that). I deserve time off and I make no apologies whatsoever for having a weekend away or spending time just for me. I do that as a general rule on my ex's time with the children. Very, very occassionally I ask my ex to cover for me - such as when I had to take a work related course for 2 weeks or when I have to work during the Easter holidays because my school operates a slightly different term calendar to that of my children. Do you think our children will be resentful of me for getting off my backside and supporting them or my ex for having 4 partners in 4 years (and counting), disappearing from their lives when it suits him, not bothering to make any financial contribution towards their upbringing?

Seriously, Bonsoir, my ex has 'moved on' and is able to conduct his personal life in the 6 days a week he doesn't see our children. Why on earth my children would be resentful that I take the odd day for myself whilst they spend time with their dad is beyond me. Your posts just serves to demonstrate the bitterness and anger that is displayed by many step parents (on both sides) who can't bear that the other person has managed to re-build their life and enjoy it without the person they think is wonderful catch. My ex was never a good catch. I only wish he'd left me sooner!

mumandboys123 Sat 16-Mar-13 19:36:23

exotic - I would happily acknowledge any of the women my ex brings into our children's lives if only he were happy to admit they exist. With the first two I was called various names and told that his personal life was none of my business. That has been his choice and I abide by it. I no longer ask questions. I therefore struggle to see how I can directly involve a woman in my arrangements who officially doesn't exist!

exoticfruits Sat 16-Mar-13 20:07:01

I think that we are talking about 2different situations mumandboys123- you have the type where they are not a family so of course you would just consult your ex- I am talking about the involved sort who loves your DCs and needs to be included.

Stepmooster Sat 16-Mar-13 20:25:14

mumandboys123 it sounds like your children have an idiot of a father. I think however that the OP has a DP who is on the opposite end of the scale. Stepmother's are not Stepford Wives, and we do deserve the respect of our DP/DH discussing with us having our DSC's with us on unplanned stays. It shows a lack of respect, and 9 times out of 10 I am sure a stepmother would be happy to see DSC if consulted. What we are not happy with is having to source food and child care at the last minute without being asked. Most of us work too, and weekends are our time to relax also. You enjoy your weekends without your children, for stepmothers especially those with children, when do they get this precious time off alone? Ex partners seem to hold that very dear, even when they themselves have moved on with their lives and found someone new. Stepmothers are not second class citizens, and there is a world of difference between the string of women your ex works his way through and proper stepmothers. I would hope that if your ex does ever settle and finds someone to be a stepmother to your children then you do give her half a chance. You would have no right to get involved in their personal life, and why should you? Unless they are running a drug den or a brothel, what they do in their spare time is not your concern. But that doesn't mean you can pretend she doesn't exist, she does, and she is a human being and like all of us we deserve mutual respect. That means you must expect your ex to communicate with her before he answers you.

I don't agree that OP should have negative thoughts about the DSC being reincarnations of their mothers. I think that the problem is more with the DP and the way she is being treated like a doormat. The DP needs to stand up to his ex and say no if it truly is inconvenient.

DizzySometimes Sat 16-Mar-13 20:32:20

and why is it that step parents never seem to see their home as being a second home to for their step children but rather see them as some kind of inconvenience that need to be accommodated rather than welcomed into a home environment? surely children shouldn't have to 'ask' to be part of their NRP's home?

They NEVER see their home as a second home? Wow - how to make a sweeping assessment of every single step parent. As a step parent, I would like to state categorically that my step son is not an inconvenience - this is his home, and he is welcome here. All that I would ask (as my parents would ask of me), is that he let us know if he's going to come over at a time when we're not going to be available/aren't expecting him to be here so that we can ensure we have food and that his dad is around to see him. I have seen other threads where posters have tried to twist this into the fact that stepchildren aren't welcome - it's no such thing, but showing respect for others and ensuring you communicate what is going on.

This kind of thread is very sad - there seems to be assumption on mumsnet (not surprising, but still very sad) that every mother is a saint and every stepmother is an evil witch out to take the father out of their children's lives. Both mums and dads can behave appalling, and I don't understand why posters don't realise that, and why they don't feel that a step parent is entitled to have her feelings acknowledged, at least, rather than being told to, basically, suck it up and accept he has a child.

OP - it really sounds like you need to discuss this with your DP and work out how you can do things together as a couple. All parents need time away, and if you were her mum, people would be telling you you needed time for the two of you - one of the inequalities of being a step-parent, I'm afraid, is that you won't necessarily hear the same thing. Of course she's going to have traits of both parents, and I do think it's understandable that that is causing you stress at the moment, but it does seem you're misdirecting your feelings to her, rather than your DP. He is the one who should be ensuring that the arrangements work for both you and his daughter. I hope you're able to sort things out to suit all three of you.

mumandboys123 Sat 16-Mar-13 20:53:15

dizzy - In fact, I use the word 'seem' alongside that 'never' which is very much indefinite and is not stating fact. Please don't get me wrong, I do understand the argument from the step mum's side but see it from a different side and find it very tiring that step mums seem to see 'real' mum (I hate the term 'birth' or 'biological') as trying to interfere, cause problems or just generally be difficult. I don't see the 'saint' thing you describe, I see quite the opposite.

Of course it is reasonable that you have notice of a step child coming over but it is the 'right of veto' that step parents seem to believe they hold that bothers me. I don't get to tell my children to sod off, I've got something else to do today that doesn't involve you, I have to have them and make arrangements for them everyday. Why my ex should have to 'consult' to be allowed to spend time with his own children in his own home is beyond me. I'm sorry, but I really don't get that.

Bonsoir Sat 16-Mar-13 21:05:37

"I don't get to tell my children to sod off, I've got something else to do today that doesn't involve you, I have to have them and make arrangements for them everyday. Why my ex should have to 'consult' to be allowed to spend time with his own children in his own home is beyond me. I'm sorry, but I really don't get that."

I can assure you that my DSSs' mother does not hesitate to tell her DCs to sod off when she has something better to do! She is a lot less accommodating than we are.

DizzySometimes Sat 16-Mar-13 21:07:20

Mumandboys - I don't have the 'right to veto', and I don't think that anyone else is saying that. What they are saying is that, if you are having someone come to your house who you're not expecting, then it is showing respect to those you live with that everyone who lives in that house knows what is going on. Yes, it is his home, but it is hers too!

You make arrangements for your child - would you not realise that your exP would make arrangements for your child with his new partner, particularly if they were living together? Say his new partner would be cooking, for instance, then they would want to know from a practical point of view. Or should his partner just arrive home not knowing what was going on? I am not my step son's parent, but his coming to stay with us still affects me, so I have a right to know. I can't see what is so difficult to understand, and why the new partner should just be invisible, which is what you're implying.

My husband generally lets me know what is going on before agreeing it with his son's mother - as his partner, should I not expect that level of respect? What you are saying is that the children should come first, to the exclusion of everyone else. I feel that both my step son and I are equally important to my husband, and am glad he seems to feel that way too!

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