I am trying not to let this annoy me but it is (Step Parenting)

(208 Posts)
Besswess88 Sat 08-May-21 16:53:42

So I am going to have rant here.

DH and I aren’t in a great place atm so I am really trying not to sweat the small stuff to his face.

His teenagers are here this weekend (my kids have left home).

We have always had lose “house rules” which everyone is expected to respect, such as people don’t just help themselves to food, they ask, everyone helps clear up after dinner and screen time has to be reasonable etc.

Both his kids are overweight (I WOULD NOT DREAM of mentioning this to them) and eat a lot of snacks/sweets (which they bring with them).

I have suggested to him that we should perhaps eat more healthily particularly when they are here as so to role model good habits and get them to like healthier food options. He then starts going on about my DC3 who went through a phase of eating crap and I was very direct with him about it and he now chooses to eat very healthily (he’s actually now a vegan).

DD2 has been in the bedroom on her phone all day and I have said maybe he should try to interact with her as she is here to see him, is struggling with friendships at school and is very shy. He’s so defensive, mentions DC3 internet use, when he is home from Uni he is online a lot (doing work, lectures, has a job and has a gf!) and when my kids were younger they did have screen time limits and he used to hide the internet router from them (yes part of the reason they moved out was him!).

He runs around after him kids loading the dishwasher etc before they can (they are perfectly happy to do it) when my kids were that age if everything wouldn’t fit in, I once caught him making the my kids wash the remainder up by hand.

DD1 has helped herself to 5 surgery hot drinks today without asking and we’ve now run out of milk so rather than asking her to pop up the shop he went up there and said nothing.

What bugs me is that he was so anal about my kids (and we fell out all the time about it, I didn’t need him directing me in how to bring up my kids I was perfectly capable of doing it myself, and he’s only ever been a weekend/Disney dad to his own kids!) and he’s scared to say anything to his own and is a total Disney dad with his own and we seem go have a completely different set of rules from a couple of years ago.

As I said I am trying to hold my tongue as it’s irrelevant now really as my kids aren’t here (I have close relationships with them all), but it’s the bloody hypocrisy which is making me feel really angry and this whole my kids/your kids shit which he brings up at every opportunity.

Does anyone else get this?

OP’s posts: |
Besswess88 Sat 08-May-21 17:06:54

Just went into the kitchen to do tea, he’s emptying the dishwasher. They are sat in the back room on their phones angry ARGH.

And breathe.

OP’s posts: |
DinosaurDiana Sat 08-May-21 17:09:34

I think you’ve got to hold your tongue unless it’s directly affecting you.
Pick your battles, as they say. Because you won’t win and it will cause a divide.

BullOx Sat 08-May-21 17:14:22

Sounds like you are being anal about his kids and are directing him in how to bring up his kids?!

BananasAreEvil Sat 08-May-21 17:15:34

I think the issue here is your relationship with your DH, isn't it OP?

Orangebug Sat 08-May-21 17:16:42

I was ready to say just leave him to parent his kids, but then I saw the bit about him being anal with your kids. That would annoy me too!

Besswess88 Sat 08-May-21 17:17:21

No I expect the rules which he anally stuck to in regards to my kids to also be stuck to for his kids.

I am not saying anything am I? So clearly not directing him!

OP’s posts: |


CuriousaboutSamphire Sat 08-May-21 17:17:24

It's too late for that if part of the reason her kids left home was his behaviour.

When they've gone home discuss it with them, with specific examples, and ask why he feels he has to step around his kids when he didn't see the need with yours!

It's too late to change how your kids managed his behaviour, but you could help his have a more balanced life!

Lou98 Sat 08-May-21 17:17:24

I get it must be frustrating that he felt your kids had to stick to the rules but his don't need to, however, I suspect that it may be on his part that he feels guilty about not seeing them as much and so over compensates by not letting them do chores, eating what they want etc.

Although, as a side, you say you didn't like him giving you advice on parenting your kids etc but then you're telling him how he should be spending his time with his kids, sorting their eating habits etc. It sounds like you're giving him the advice that you didn't want for your children.

Besswess88 Sat 08-May-21 17:19:14

We always agreed we would have the same rules for all 6 kids, now there are only two left the rule book has gone out the window.

OP’s posts: |
Besswess88 Sat 08-May-21 17:20:16

When it’s in your own home and you go to the fridge and there is no milk for example because of someone’s greed/lack of consideration and this isn’t highlighted it’s very irritating.

OP’s posts: |
BlackDaffodil Sat 08-May-21 17:20:28

OP.. total respect to you for what you are trying to do..

You are clearly alone in caring.

If he can't see this as anything other than a personal attack then more fool him. It's his kids you have to feel for, and you are right, small changes here and there make such a difference.

I feel for you and the kids, he on the other hand sounds like a complete Pratt.

EasterEggBelly Sat 08-May-21 17:23:13

(yes part of the reason they moved out was him!)
Not something that I would find funny, especially given how he panders to his own children.

The constant comparison to your children by way of excusing his lack of parenting would be tedious. Keep redirecting it back to his child.

Why don’t you say something to the child that used up the last of the milk? Why are you tiptoeing around them?

Sounds like a stressful and unpleasant environment.

Besswess88 Sat 08-May-21 17:25:41

I do not find it funny that they moved out but they have successful and happy lives and come back all the time so it’s not been an awful thing for them.

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chocolatesaltyballs22 Sat 08-May-21 17:26:25

So if it wasn't for the fact that he was anal with your kids I would leave him to it. But I would also be extremely annoyed about the double standards. My husband is the same with his kids but he also runs around after my daughter as well. I leave him to it.

Having said that you're only winding yourself up so maybe you should take a deep breath and a very big step back.

Hankunamatata Sat 08-May-21 17:28:00

How often do his teens come over? Is he worried that if he makes them do chores etc that they wont come and stay?

bogoffmda Sat 08-May-21 17:28:41

I get alot of what you are saying -

but expecting teenagers to ask if they can have something to eat in their home - seriously.

My eldest is constantly troughing still eats meals etc. Ig he came to ask me everytime he wanted to eat - I would go nuts.

Besswess88 Sat 08-May-21 17:32:21

Yeah I do expect them to ask, no one helps themselves, hence I have 3 kids who all cook from scratch for themselves and eat healthily.

OP’s posts: |
Besswess88 Sat 08-May-21 17:33:09

They are allowed to help themselves to fruit 🤷‍♀️

OP’s posts: |
BoredatHome321 Sat 08-May-21 17:33:56

If every time I went to my mums I had to ask if it was okay to eat something I think she'd go crazy (so would I). I wouldn't drink the last of the milk though, maybe the last dairy milk chocolate bargrin

IceCreamAndCandyfloss Sat 08-May-21 17:34:51

I can’t imagine mine having to ask for food in their own home. For me, that’s bound t cause issues when they are elsewhere or leave home and can have free reign to make up for it.

Mintyt Sat 08-May-21 17:35:42

I wouldn't want my children/stepchildren to ask for a drink, but I would want them to be considerate of using everything up. Your DH has gone to the shops/emptied the dishwasher to placate you. I would ask him directly why he treats your children and his children differently,

SunIsComing Sat 08-May-21 17:37:17

You’re a bit nuts.... why should they ask for food every time. Using all the milk is annoying, but they are kids. Being in screens, sadly normal. Yabu

Skiptheheartsandflowers Sat 08-May-21 17:37:59

What's he like with your kids nowadays when they come back to visit?

godmum56 Sat 08-May-21 17:38:53

simple question really.....why do you say?

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