Newbie first post :)

(31 Posts)
KelleBelle Sat 30-Apr-16 18:54:26

Hi smile

I'm Kelly. Mum of 2 DD (9 and 12) and 2 DSC (13 and 14)

DP and I got together about 20 months ago after he had a really messy divorce during which his kids witnessed some really volatile behaviour from their step-mum with lots of spiteful behaviour aimed at his son.

I've known DP all my life. We grew up next door to each other... he even taught me to ride a bike when I was about 5.... We never really expected to end up together but it happened and it's all felt so natural.

I raised my girls very differently to what he was accustomed to. Both of my girls were home schooled and we were very very close, as I'd been on my own with them for 7 years. We had a few teething problems with my kids having a degree of separation anxiety at the beginning..... realistically I was with my girls 24/7, and they weren't used to sharing me.

My girls are happy, I have no doubt but I sometimes struggle with the fact I've changed everything that they have known yet at times DP seems to come across as quite harsh on them in comparison to his. This is excused because we only have his one night a week plus weekends.

His have tested us over the last few months.... his daughter sending and receiving saucy snapchat messages that we caught her receiving and his son stealing ecigs, liquids and even chargers from our home to sell because he wanted the money for trainers. We have dealt with it and I believe learnt from it and I hope we have grown stronger as a family for what we have been through. There was little discipline for these incidents as their mum thought it wasn't necessary. My main concern is feeling I need to rebuild trust in DSS now.

My DD12 had surgery in February which left her unable to walk. She couldn't even sit comfortably in a wheelchair as she lost the ability to bend her legs and this went on for several weeks, yet I felt that the words of encouragement moved quickly on to impatience but I can see that the situation was frustrating as there was no physical reason for her inability to walk.

I think I just need to feel like I'm not the only person out there trying to build a strong blended family.... and I need to learn how to handle the challenges calmly and fairly when they come.

I look forwards to speaking to you smile

Bananasinpyjamas1 Sat 30-Apr-16 23:22:48

You are not alone. flowers. It does sound hard at times for you. Is your DP building a relationship with your girls or is he just a bit gruff with them?

KelleBelle Sun 01-May-16 08:06:19

He's built a brilliant relationship with them.... I guess they're just not used to discipline blush lol.

With home schooling for so long, the 3 of us built a relationship on mutual respect, and we lived equally. With being together 24/7 we had to make sure we got along with as little bickering and as much consideration for each other as was possible. DD1 has ongoing health problems which meant lots of trips to hospitals, lots of times when everything had to stop. DD2 has autism spectrum disorder which was only diagnosed about 3 years ago so we've had to learn so much about that as well. In fact I'm pretty sure I'll always be learning. She is very intolerant of certain sounds and words and movements that other people make and she will look out for us doing them, even people on the TV or radio saying her 'banned words' and responds with what her clinical psychologist describes as a tourettes like tic. It used to be a loud "Oi!" Which DP couldn't tolerate, so we worked on that but then it manifested itself in several different ways.... obsessing over door handles.... having to walk a certain number of steps to touch the door and a certain number of steps back (and if anyone made a noise whilst she was completing her ritual, she would have to begin it again) which meant that some evenings whilst we were having family time she would sometimes have to walk across the room 15 times to lift the door handle before she could sit.... and then if anyone made a noise she didn't like again it would start all over.

I think DP felt this behaviour was naughty and could be fixed, so to speak. With hindsight, she was just coping with all the changes in her own little way. I'd never challenged anything before.... why would I care that she moves the remote controls every time I put them down? Why would I stress over her moving my phone if I put it down the wrong way round. In the grand scene of things, there are bigger things in this world to stress over and I'm never going to be one to get into a battle for control... it's not me. DP however, found this behaviour intolerable. He didn't understand autism at that point. I'm not sure he entirely gets it now, but I do... so when he challenges, I'm far more confident in challenging him back and explaining that for DD2, some things are just always going to be that way. Pass him the lego, build a bridge and get over it lol.

His kids are typical textbook "perfect" kids. They're healthy, they're used to 'teacher voice discipline' and from the outside, do exactly as they're told. It's only when you look a bit closer you realise that these perfect kids that don't step a foot wrong are actually human, and do mess up, and that's fine. I have to explain to him sometimes that we have to make mistakes to learn.

I'm waffling, sorry lol. Just feel like I've kept all this in for so long now and it's a massive relief to let it all out x

Marilynsbigsister Sun 01-May-16 08:10:20

Hi Op, you have my sympathy. I have been a sm for a decade and still get frustrated at DH inability to treat all dcs both mine and his equally. The only way forward is to keep reinforcing what is and isn't acceptable. Two things you mention though, stick out. Firstly why on earth was a 13/14 yr old so desperate for a pair of trainers that he felt forced to steal to fund it ? Could he not just ask his df ?
The more worrying issue was your daughter 'being unable to walk despite there being no physical reason' ....is it possible that this was her way of resting your attention back to her. It's a very extreme behaviour and may indicate she is not as happy with the change as you may of hoped.

As for sexting from the other Dsc , sorry but in this day and age with a teenager, it's par for the course..and part of modern parenting. You haven't got there yet....sadly you will and will have to remain vigilant to protect theim.

KelleBelle Sun 01-May-16 08:31:46

Hi smile

The trainers..... where to start with those. This is where my rational side goes. But I put that down to feeling hurt that trust has been broken.

He has trainers. He has loads of trainers. If he wants anything he asks his mum who usually directs him to us.... which is totally fine (she says through gritted teeth lol)

I counted from August which was his birthday last year, the things he's asked for and had up until the stealing incident. He'd had 2 I phones, a laptop, a desktop pc, a go pro (which wasn't an official go pro... a cheaper alternative... that I found in his bin 2 weeks later) a years subs to a diving club, a years season ticket to his fave football team, football boots, 2 x box one (one for here one for home) trainers, a trip to portugal and a trip to paris, and more branded clothes than you can shake a stick at.

He honestly doesn't go without. sad

My daughter.... it's a tricky one with her legs. the pain was definitely genuine although all health professionals felt that the acute pain had affected her so badly that it was psychological issues that were stopping her from being able to bend her legs. It took a month of intensive physio and hydrotherapy to start bending them again.

We have since discovered that 5 years of her taking prednisolone daily for her asthma has supressed her adrenal function (I still don't quite understand what they're telling me yet so I can't make proper sense of it) and they are talking about Addisons disease which apparently can affect how people cope with physical and emotional trauma, so that could explain why she didn't cope with it all. I honestly don't know. We are waiting to see an endocrinologist, so hopefully I will find out a bit more.

KelleBelle Sun 01-May-16 08:42:25

I think if I'm completely honest, I feel so overwhelmed by everything at the minute that DP and I are getting lost in it all.

We need to get back on the same page. I'm trying to focus on making sure all the kids are ok, and I'm getting my knickers in a knot in the process of it all. I have issues with anxiety which I I have learnt to be super rational over up until now. Everything seems to have got on top of me and something in my head has shut off. I even went to the doctor who has put me on a tablet to calm me down on a more long term basis but it's making my head foggy and I hate the feeling. I am calmer though since I've been taking it. I think this is why I've come here to be honest. Maybe if I speak to people and hopefully learn from people how I can be a better SM and understand that lots of people have struggles, and it's normal then perhaps I can chill out a little.

dailymailphequers Sun 01-May-16 08:46:12

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

KelleBelle Sun 01-May-16 08:54:59

Hi Daily, yes. I am his 3rd long term partner.

He has his kids with his first wife.

He then married his 2nd wife and was step dad to her 3 kids. Their marriage broke down (he believes it was a scam marriage for money, as he was her 3rd husband that she had married for financial gain....) That's a long story though.

2nd wife caused a lot of trouble between him and the kids mum so I made sure when we got together that bridges were rebuilt with her for the kids sakes. She's a lovely woman and didn't deserve to get tangled up in the mess of the 2nd wife. I don't like the idea of kids having to see any kind of nastiness between parents and unfortunately 2nd wife had caused it to turn quite nasty.

The kids appreciated the new friendship being rebuilt between us all and as hard as it has been for me (I know that sounds selfish blush) it's benefitted the kids massively. She has overstepped the mark a few times with me.... but not enough to make me think that I'd have to confront her over it. I hope she respects the fact that I've put my insecurities aside in the best interests of the kids.

dailymailphequers Sun 01-May-16 09:51:07

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

KelleBelle Sun 01-May-16 10:38:33

Why? shock x

dailymailphequers Sun 01-May-16 10:44:34

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

dailymailphequers Sun 01-May-16 10:44:49

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MrsLeighHalfpenny Sun 01-May-16 10:52:58

I think part of the problem is that, until DP and his kids came along you treated your own DCs as equals.

Children need to know they aren't the equal, as such, of the adults in the house and need to do what they are told. The adults are in charge.

Respect them, yes, and they should respect you. But perhaps they are having problems accepting authority?

The teenage DCs sound like normal teenagers pushing boundaries to me.

MrsLeighHalfpenny Sun 01-May-16 10:54:42

And send your kids to school FFS.

KelleBelle Sun 01-May-16 11:04:01

Omg lol. Do you know me? Do you know why my kids were home schooled?

My eldest started school last September and is well ahead of where she is expected to be.

My youngest is currently going through the process of an ehcp assessment as she is in no way equipped for a mainstream school.

I withdrew my eldest from school as she was spending 3 out of 4 weeks in hospital as she has unstable asthma and bronchiectasis. She was picking germs up left right and center and doctors agreed that it was a good idea. It worked brilliantly. Her asthma became more stable and it gave doctors the chance to work out which medications would work best for her.

I haven't once said my kids are perfect. I haven't once said his ex wife is a bitch from hell.

dailymailphequers Sun 01-May-16 11:06:21

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MrsLeighHalfpenny Sun 01-May-16 11:14:22

Yep. Good luck.

KelleBelle Sun 01-May-16 18:35:20

I'm a bit confused confused

DD1 didn't just wake up one day unable to walk..... she had bilateral knee surgery in which she had metal plates inserted into her bones. I don't think she got herself "so upset that she lost the ability to walk".

I feel like I've been attacked and had my words manipulated to make me sound like stepmother bitch from hell, who has failed everyone. What the actual fuck????

I saw a similar attack a few days ago on someone asking for advice.

dailymailphequers Sun 01-May-16 18:39:18

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

KelleBelle Sun 01-May-16 18:41:18

It may be helpful to explain why I will be needing luck, also. It's quite a big statement to make if there is no explanation offered.

I came on here looking for advice and support on how to be a better SM, from other ladies who will have no doubt more experience than me and be able to offer words of wisdom.

Instead I was flamed over my own kids for not being able to accept authority and not going into school (clearly after some have assumed they're havoc wreaking reprobates, who I simply have no control over... you couldn't be further from the truth lol). I'm surprised how judgemental some of you ladies have been.

Shame on you.

KelleBelle Sun 01-May-16 18:44:11

I said it was psychological because the consultant said there was no physical reason for them not bending! As in the metal plates were NOT holding her joints straight.

I also explained that since then she has had a synacthen test which has shown that her adrenal system has been supressed by her medications and that if the consultants theory is right and she has Addisons disease, it's possible that she dealt with it the way she did because of that. Her body just taking that bit longer to accept what had happened to it.

dailymailphequers Sun 01-May-16 18:45:26

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

KelleBelle Sun 01-May-16 18:48:27

Dailymailphequers are you the forum police? Do you feel my story is untrue and is giving you the authority to cross examine my post?

Do you think I would go to the time and effort to post a load of crap? I actually have better things to do than come on here and tell lies you know.

Is there a reason you have come down so hard on me? So hard that you would imply I have caused such a degree of unhappiness on my girls, through my choices, that they would be psychologically scarred so badly that they would feign disability just to get some of my attention?

KelleBelle Sun 01-May-16 18:52:53

Again wishing me luck.

Help! Are you saying I'm doing everything wrong or my situation is wrong?

Of course I know all isn't rosy otherwise I wouldn't have turned to a group of women who I know damn well, will know a lot more than I do.

I came here for help and got flamed.

Bananasinpyjamas1 Sun 01-May-16 19:28:24

It's obviously quite a complicated situation for you OP, not something that any of us reading are going to get a good sense of - so I'm not sure any of us are able to make big assumptions about it.

It does sound like there is a lot going on though, that is my main sense of what you have written so far, and if you are home schooling, there are two exes from your DP, and lots of different individual health and other issues with kids then that is a LOT. I wonder if it will overwhelm you? Are there any major issues that you feel are in your control and you would like changed first?

If you are juggling too many balls in the air, maybe drop a couple? For example, leave the step kids issues to their Dad at the moment, just concentrate on what affects the household from their behavior. And maybe you need a bit of time for yourself? You don't get any respite if you are home schooling.

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