Desperate for advice
I'm sorry ladies and gents but I need to vent and unfortunately I don't feel like I can talk to any one.
I've been a step parent for two years, we have my Bf son every other weekend and for about 6 weeks spread out through the school year.
He lives with his birth mother about a 2 hour drive away wich my bf or I do every journey as the birth mother is unwilling to do the drive.
in the past few days my step child has got impetigo and has been given antibiotics cream as he has it in several patches over his body.
He's been off of school and is allowed back tomorrow as he has been in "quarantine".
Now me and my bf have an 8 week baby who's yet to have any injections and due to me being very ill during birth and since the baby has got oral thrush due to me breast feeding and being on lots of medication. So she is on antibiotics for that, that's has been for 3 weeks as her body's not fighting it effectively. It's our weekend to have his son and I have asked if we can swap weekends due to him being sick my concern is that whilst he may not be infectious his mother may not be showing symptoms yet as it can take up to 10 days so there's a chance of my daughter getting the infection via her farther or brother.
He says I'm being selfish as it will be a another week until he sees his son if we swap weekends.
He looked at staying at a hotel but I pointed out that whilst it minimises the risk if she has it then he may get it and bring it home with out knowing. His ex wife has stated she won't swap weekends due to having plans and as she's more stubbourn than I am my boyfriend is basically ignoring my fears.
I don't understand why he would take that risk with an already sick child.
I assumed he'd do the best for both children but I don't feel like he is.
I'm heartbroken that he is willing to take that risk and a part of me feels like he's putting his want to see his child (wich I totally appreciate) above my child. And I feel like his still may as well be with his ex as he never wants to say anything or upset her so I have to live with her rules.
I know I'm tired and on heart medication due to my preeclampsia but right now I'm sat down stairs sobbing and he's upstairs happily sleeping.
I know he's going to pick him up tomorrow and bring him home for the weekend and all I want to do is pick my baby up and leave and not come back untill the house has been thoroughly cleaned.
Am I being over the top?
Feel like I need some perspective as he's making me feel like it's all unfounded claims and it's all ok.
But due to previous issues with his ex I'm about ready to throw the towel in and walk away.
Calm down and try and think rationally. Your baby will have lots of immunity from your breast milk. If DSS was resident with you all of the time and contracted the illness, what would you do.......move out? Millions of newborns are exposed to illnesses by older siblings, that's life! I'm with your BF on this one, your DSS shouldn't miss the visit, and at such an early stage in becoming an older brother it's really important to keep contact routines the same, you don't want DSS feeling pushed out by the baby.
I'm sorry you are stressed and unwell and have had a rough time. I remember with my first I didn't think I'd ever do anything but just cope. You haven't transitioned to having two children naturally and it must be tough to look after an older child when you are hormonal ad not well.
But your baby is your dp's second child and his first is the baby's half brother and my be feeling vulnerable too. If he was your child he would be there all the time and this would be a non issue. He must be feeling very vulnerable at the moment.
You sound very worried and very low. Are you getting the clinical support you need to recover, possibly emotionally as well as physically.
"I'm heartbroken that he is willing to take that risk and a part of me feels like he's putting his want to see his child (wich I totally appreciate) above my child. " The thing is though that they are both his children. And while it's natural that you are going to feel differently about your baby vs your DSS, your BF isn't.
If you had more than one child you couldn't just move out with one when the other got sick, this is no different, and it's very important that your DSS not be made to feel pushed out by the baby.
I'm sorry that you've had a hard time, have you spoken to your HV for some support?
I really don't think there is a chance that your dh will catch impetigo from the mother (even if she does have it, which she probably doesn't). Not unless they are sharing bedding/towels or he is in direct contact with lesions on her body. Does he even need to go in the house to do the pick up?
I am sorry your baby is sick. Its awful when they are but I evho what PP have said. Impetigo is not life threatening and as long as you use a seperate towel/face cloth for DSS and dont encourage face to face contact it should be fine.
You BF son is not disposable you cant just not see hom because it is inconvieniant.
Also in regards to collection if it was your BF who moved away then it is his responsibilty to do the travelling.
Oh and birth mother is not needed. Mum will do, birth mother is disrespectful.
Hope your baby and DSS get well soon
I agree birth mother is disrespectful it implies she has no contact with the child and is a term used for adoption when in fact she is the RP, I don't understand why it sometimes get missed used on these boards surely it's just mum or mother and SM for step mother.
I agree with the other pp if they hold in question lived with you then you wouldn't move out. I would follow the advice for preventing infection. Don't forget your BF loves the baby but he also loves his son and it's important that he doesn't miss out on important time with him. The little boy might already feel abit vulnerable about his place in his dad's family stopping access might send the wrong message.
You are understandably feeling vulnerable with such a young baby and what you have all been through. Just make sure you all take precautions to prevent any spread of infection. Try not to make any long term decisions about your relationship right now, you are still in that post baby fog stage where everything is just too much to cope with.
WTAS. My children both live with me. DS1 had chickenpox when DS2 was six weeks old. Two weeks later DS2 came out in a few spots.
I thought he'd get them again as it was a really mild case (probably due to my milk immunity) but they've done the rounds at nursery and school and he's done.
Surely if your DD is on antibiotics she will be protected from the small chance of her catching it anyway?
I'm afraid I think you are being unfair to the mother. She has plans and is not for her to adjust her life to suit you. Your DH suggestion of staying in a hotel seems the right compromise if you are worried about your daughter and I don't see how this is in anyway showing he is putting his son in front of his daughter or you.
Saying that I agree that the first months of baby's life is very testing emotionally and can make us feel very vulnerable. Sleep deprivation only can cloud things. Hope it will all be ok in the end.
I may well get flamed but hey ho. You're not his stepmother you are his fathers girlfriend , of a relatively short time, baby or not. Birth mother is a weird and contemptuous way to describe this childs Mum. Saying his child, my child, they're both his. Like has been said, you can't just shut him out. Yours does not replace your DSS.
Ettaj I actually agree with you 2years isn't long to be referring to the SM status.
I know lots of stepmums but I'm the only one who says bio mum or birth mum because dss lives with us full time and my dh's exw has given the green light for me to adopt as she has not seen him or spoken to him in years.
Your post is quite saddening tbh. The disdainful tone might be unintentional but to be blunt yes you are being ott.
I don't find referring to mother as birth mother insulting nor referring to nrp' s partner as SM if they live and have a baby together.
But birth mother does imply that the woman has no relationship with her child tbh.
Oh for goodness sake. The poor OP is worried sick (albeit irrationally) about the baby and is having a hard time coping with life at the moment. How is it helpful to have a go at her about the use of the term "birth mother"?
Dear OP - you are being irrational, but completely understandably so under the circumstances. Your DSS should no longer be infectious, and there is no risk your DP will catch impetigo from his ex by just talking to her.
Your baby is not on antibiotics for thrush, though, unless there's a secondary bacterial infection. Antifungals, perhaps?
Hope it all works out OK for you.
I didn't have a go at anyone Miss
I think you are being unfair to your partner and his little boy. Don't forget, that little boy is your child's brother, and will look forward to seeing his little sister - that's only natural. If he is made to feel unwelcome because of (let's be honest, a relatively minor) infection, he may start to think that his sister's needs are put before his own and cause resentment.
Your partner sounds like he is doing his best to be a good dad to both children. What would happen if you were ill - would you leave the home to avoid infecting your daughter? What if you had another child and your daughter became poorly while the second child was a baby?
This is real life, and infections and illnesses are part of it. I know it can be difficult to come to terms with stepchildren - my husband had full custody of his two sons who were aged 12 and 18 when we met, and I moved in almost straightaway and our son came along and we married within a year, so I ended up as stepmum to two teens (one of whom was only 2 years younger than me). By the way, in our family we don't see the boys as "half brothers" - that division seems as though you are making a clear statement about how you view the relationship. We see them as brothers, and the boys (now men in their 30s!) see me and hubby as mum and dad, and their mum and stepdad as mum and dad. I'm not meaning to be critical, but you seem to regard the little boy's mum as separate from your family, when really she's part of an extended family.
As I was reading your OP I was mentally ticking off the things that people would get distracted by and use them as a stick to beat you. Not sure how long you've been on MN but just for information, if you're a stepmum, generally you're wrong (as well as being the other woman), you cannot refer to yourself as step mum unless you're married to the father, if you refer to mum as birth or biological mum - you'll have your arse handed to you and nothing you ever say will be OK.
FWIW your first answer was the best one.
MN is not the only parenting forum in the world, and on many others, use of the term Birth Mother is accepted and approved shorthand.
It isn't here, but nothing I read in the OP suggested that it was being used offensively - unless of course, you're looking for something to take offence at.
I hope you managed some sleep OP and are feeling a little stronger now. You sound as if you have been through a rough time and it's all getting a bit much. Please don't worry. The risk of infection is minimal and you are fretting because it's all so new and your baby is the most precious thing on earth to you at the moment. Your bf sound like a decent guy (maybe could do with work on his tactful side!) and quite naturally wants to see his other child. Don't stand in their way, the child needs as much love as he can get. Any exclusion at this stage will start to fracture the child's self esteem and damage the father/child bond. Take a deep breath, make a cup of tea and do your best to relax. Best wishes to you X
You need to realise you are now a 2 child family now. .
But birth mother does imply that the woman has no relationship with her child tbh.
No it doesn't at all. Ironically, it is much more an appropriate description of what a mother is in this instance than a step-mum ever is when she's been in the life of the child for a long time. What is meant by step? Stepping towards being a mum?
I got flamed once for using this word and still can't understand why it seems to hurt the sensibility of some posters.
OP, I hope you are better too. The overwhelming feeling of protection for our newborn is natural and does turn us into mad women! I remember how it fell upon me like a rock when the consultant started to twist DD hips to make sure they were in the correct position (as they do systematically before discharging). When my DD started to cry (probably because it woke her up), I felt this overwhelming urge to punch the doctor! I had no idea where it came from, but I knew that nature had already done its part and that I would be a good mum in that I would always ensure that no harm came to my daughter. Still, had to reason with myself that my DD was already a lot stronger than I thought!
That makes zero sense. Why not just say mother???
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