I have a partner aged 53 and a 14 yr old step son who does not live with us but has set days of Tues and Sat. Partner has hugh guilt issue over the fact that he has a son from a failed relationship and is overly obsessive about his son. SS mum is overly possesive too and I see a tug of war over who does most/is best parent etc etc. Since we have been together I have improved my partners relationship with his son ten fold. Together we do more than partner and my ss have ever done and I am a strong rod for my partner. Last night ss had his MMR jab at the drs. SS is very soft and faints if he hurts himself ie: bang on head, trapped finger in car door, nick on ear at barbers,I think alot of it is attention seeking maybe from when he was younger but has continued into his teens...So both parents took him to the docs for the injection which I said was unnecessary at 14 and they should try to stop treating him as if he was 7, I said one parent is enough for the support ss needs, but neither parent would allow him to go with the other. Anyway over an hour and half later they came home. SS was fine although he had fainted/had fit as per usual when he saw the needle. When I asked why they had been so long partner said "they" (all 3 of them) had been to my partners mum and dads for cup of tea. I was absolutely furious and said I'm waiting at home for you two worried that ss is ok and you are playing happy families....how hurtful is that? Ex partner yanks his chain all the time over their son,what she says goes and I have held my partner when he has cried over something she has done and talked for hours when he is down...He just shouted and said it was all about (son) and I had to deal with it. I am a parent of a lovely successful 22 year old daughter who also unfortunately came from a failed marriage but we handled everything well and I feel that I do have the right to express my opinion. But my partners obsession is ruining us.
Could you encourage your DSS to have a friend round at some point? As a rather young 14 year old, he might be still just about be of an age that you can get away with arranging this through parents - and if your DP's on good terms with his ex, this should help as she can probably provide a suggestion and phone number. Or alternatively encourage DSS directly to invite someone over. Offer to run them there and back if necessary.
I doubt your DSS does behave quite as immaturely when he's with his friends, and it would probably be good for your DP to see him relating to other teenage boys and help him realise his DS is growing up.
I share you pain with holiday plans - I've book us an exciting package deal this summer and hear nothing but moans from DSS (14) that I have to struggle not to shout at him that we'll leave him behind and take some poor child that's never had a foreign holiday instead! Best option is practice is to walk out the room and not listen to his moans. But that's my DSS, not my DP doing the moaning. I don't think I'd take it from DP!
Any chance you could not mention the stuff that bugs you to either of them just when you do stuff together try and big up independence skill related things not in a obvious way just try and focus on getting him to want to enjoy stuff that does not involve the adults doing things for him?
Start with pleasurable things until he learns he can enjoy them chances are he will start to gain a bit of independence by himself.
Oh but leave off the criticising the goodnight kiss thing nothing wrong with it if the child is comfortable with it.
My DD is 22, lives with her partner and works in Business Development. There is a lifetime between them. She is fond of my DP and DS and visa versa. So no, I don't compare them. I never have and I never will.....
As for bullying. There are certainly no issues we are aware of. He seems happy to attend ( well as much as any other teenager) and school reports are fairly good.