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AIBU or wicked? I prefer it when step kids aren't with us

(115 Posts)
ShhhTheDogIsSleeping Thu 19-Sep-19 13:15:47

I appreciate I'm probably going to get a blasting here but...

I realised the other day that I look forward to the days of the week we don't have my step children. DH has 50/50 contact which is 3 days one week and 4 the next.

I feel really awful because I don't dislike the children at all, we get on really well, have a good laugh together etc. But I do get to the end of our days with them and think I can't wait to have our days 'off' now.

They are slightly older now so most evenings are spent staying up till later on watching child appropriate TV or video games. I feel like me and DH just don't really interact as much when they are here and we seem to get on so much better when they aren't. Not that we argue or anything when they are here just that we don't get much chance for adult conversation really.

Its not that I hate it when they are here, I don't, I still have a nice time, we still have fun. I just prefer the days/nights when it's just me and H.

Am I awful? I really don't think I'm a terrible step mother, they are treated so well and I really do think they are great kids but I do feel a pang of guilt whenever they are getting ready to leave and I'm actually looking forward to it.

The other week, Hs ex asked if we could have them for the night at the last minute because of a situation with her and we obviously said that was absolutely fine but I would be lying if I said I wasn't a little bit disappointed for a fleeting moment.

I sound like a right cow don't I! I really don't dislike them, I feel very fondly towards them and I think in comparison to some threads I've read on here, we have a really close relationship, I just... I don't know!

Isit2019already Thu 19-Sep-19 13:17:37

As long as they don't get this sense from you I think it's fine.

Greeni Thu 19-Sep-19 13:18:41

Most parents relish time away from the kids and 50/50 isn’t insignificant.
Do you feel like you have to entertain them 24/7 when they’re at yours? It’s ok to do what you want to and leave them to watch a film or play a game together etc

nokidshere Thu 19-Sep-19 13:19:48

After years of parenting I look forward to the times when my teenagers are off doing something else and we get some adult time. I don't think that's unusual.

OnlyFoolsnMothers Thu 19-Sep-19 13:20:11

Does it affect how you treat them?

Tbh what you’ve said isn’t nice but is probably honest, they aren’t your children. They aren’t going anywhere though, will you?

pigeononthegate Thu 19-Sep-19 13:20:15

I dont think you're a cow, you can't help how you feel, but I do feel sorry for the kids. They will know how you feel, however well you think you disguise it. Unfortunately this is just what happens when parents split up and new partners become involved etc. I've gradually come to the reluctant conclusion that a true "blended family" is a very rare thing indeed. Mostly people feel the way you do, even decent, kind people like you who try to hide it and do the right thing. The children know their presence is on sufferance and it's a sad situation.

ShhhTheDogIsSleeping Thu 19-Sep-19 13:20:28

We don't have to entertain them as such but they don't like being up in their room so all TV or games are played in the living room with us which means there's not much else for me and H to do but watch.

ShhhTheDogIsSleeping Thu 19-Sep-19 13:21:02

Does it affect how you treat them?

No, never.

Greeni Thu 19-Sep-19 13:22:40

How old are they? Do they have a bedtime when you and dh can have some adult time?

ShhhTheDogIsSleeping Thu 19-Sep-19 13:23:36

Their presence really isn't on sufferance. I don't dislike them being here, I tell them I've missed them etc... which is true. I just, if I was being 100% honest, look forward more to the days where it's just me and DH.

I don't hate them being here. We still have a good time, not just we but I do as well. I still enjoy their company and I really don't believe it affects them in any way. H wouldn't even know I felt this way.

MellowBird85 Thu 19-Sep-19 13:24:49

Definitely not a cow or wicked. I have DSC’s and could’ve wrote your post myself.

IsobelRae23 Thu 19-Sep-19 13:25:07

How old are they?
Can you both go to your room and watch tv? Lie on the bed and read a book? Lie on the bed and chat? Get romantic 😉? Get on with cleaning, ironing etc so you are ‘free’ on your child free days?

thunderandsunshine01 Thu 19-Sep-19 13:26:38

I look forward to my own DD going off to her dads for a couple of days. Doesn’t mean I don’t love her, doesn’t mean anything at all actually. There is nothing wrong with looking forward to alone time with DP.
I’m sure if you didn’t see them for a longer than normal you’d miss the hustle and bustle of having them round too. You sound like a perfectly normal parent, let alone step parent OP

PenelopeGarciasCrazyHair Thu 19-Sep-19 13:34:00

We don't have to entertain them as such but they don't like being up in their room so all TV or games are played in the living room with us which means there's not much else for me and H to do but watch.

See this would annoy me with my own DCs let alone someone else’s.

FWIW my DP doesn’t live with us, mainly because I would struggle to share a home with him and his DCs 50/50.

Things are very different between us when his DCs are around - mine seem more self sufficient and are happy to spend time with us but then go off to their own rooms to play games, read etc, leaving us some adult only time in the evenings.

His younger one especially wants to be with him, sat on his knee or cuddled up with him, so I feel that the closeness we have when we’re alone or with my DCs disappears when his are around.

I know exactly how you feel - it’s not that I don’t like his kids (although I don’t see a huge amount of them any more as it’s just not worth bothering, I may as well just spend time with my own DCs and him with his sad ) but it’s more that I don’t like US when they’re around. I can see that he’s being a good attentive dad, but it’s like our relationship functions perfectly well with MY DCs around, but has to be put on hold when his are.

We went on holiday as a gang earlier this year and he even said to me one day “I miss you! I know we’ve spent every day together but I don’t feel like I get to talk to you”, so I know he’s conscious of it sometimes, but it maybe doesn’t affect him as much as me most of the time.

One of the days on holiday I thought I’d done something wrong as he literally hardly spoke to me all day. When I asked what I’d done to upset him it turned out nothing, he was just so distracted with the DCs that he hadn’t even acknowledged me the whole day.

You aren’t being unreasonable to feel a little pang of disappointment when you are looking forward to getting a bit of couple time back and it’s taken away for any reason.

hsegfiugseskufh Thu 19-Sep-19 13:35:20

nothing wrong at all with that. I look forward to the odd weekend when DS goes to my mums! Doesn't mean I dislike him!

KUGA Thu 19-Sep-19 13:42:15

With MellowBird85 totally.
Had four s/c when I moved in the youngest has downs syndrome and she is a delight most of the time.
The other three moved out at different times so now down to one.
OMG do I love time with just my dh and vica verca.
It`s not selfish it`s honesty.
And it doesn`t mean she`s loved any the less.
So please don`t feel bad.

KnittingSister Thu 19-Sep-19 13:45:01

We don't have to entertain them as such but they don't like being up in their room so all TV or games are played in the living room with us which means there's not much else for me and H to do but watch.

That sounds to me like you need a hobby, what about knitting or puzzles or reading? Something to do in the room while the tele is on.

ShhhTheDogIsSleeping Thu 19-Sep-19 13:46:38

We do sit upstairs sometimes but then H says he feels like he should be spending time with them whilst they are here so wants to sit downstairs.

To me they couldn't give less of one whether we are sat there or not, they are too busy talking to friends over their headsets or whatever ha. But I understand his point.

AnneLovesGilbert Thu 19-Sep-19 13:47:18

Your life is a mix of family time and couple time. You find the childfree couple bit easier - who wouldn’t? Would you judge their mum if she enjoyed the time she has her house to herself? Probably not. So don’t beat yourself up.

Friends of mine share their DD 50/50 and she definitely has the best of both of them. That’s a good thing.

DobbyLovesSocks Thu 19-Sep-19 13:50:22

I live for the hour or so DS is at cubs once a week - I love him to bits but I still love 'me' time

Shplot Thu 19-Sep-19 13:52:05

So let dp sit with them while you do what you want to do, you don’t have to be in each other’s pockets 24/7

Bibidy Thu 19-Sep-19 13:54:41

Of course you prefer it when they're not around - they're not your kids!

I'm sure a lot of parents would appreciate some child-free time as well.

Nothing wrong with you at all.

ShhhTheDogIsSleeping Thu 19-Sep-19 13:54:49


That's true, I didn't think of it like that. I guess I just thought it was me selfishly wanting H to myself haha.

maddening Thu 19-Sep-19 13:55:50

When ds was the most gorgeous clingy baby in the entire universe and throughout the whole of time I kept referring to his nap time as my "breaktime" - and he is my very own child, it is not bad to enjoy your "me" time.

ShhhTheDogIsSleeping Thu 19-Sep-19 13:56:21

So let dp sit with them while you do what you want to do, you don’t have to be in each other’s pockets 24/7

He does and we aren't in each others pockets 24/7. I'm just saying I prefer the evenings when it's just us in the house.

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