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Anyone else got more step kids than their own?

(28 Posts)
theredhen Wed 24-Nov-10 13:28:07

I think I am struggling with the balance of "yours" and "mine".

We are a family of 7, but only 1 child is mine.

When step children arrive, my house rules go out of the window and a new set have to be applied. To be fair, this is probably because it is virtually impossible to parent 5 children in the same way you do with 1. You simply do not have enough hours in the day to give the attention to discipline, homework, manners etc.

Just wondered if other people in the same position as me feel the same way or if you look forward to being a big, happy, noisy bunch and dislike the quiet than ensues the moment the step children go back to the RP.

SMummyS Wed 24-Nov-10 13:55:19

I have 1 DBD and non of my own as yet. I can say I hate the quiet house, although DP and I get time as a couple I do really muss DBD, she's 5. When I say I hate the quiet house its not a quiet house I don't like it's not having her here.. If any of that makes sense

SMummyS Wed 24-Nov-10 13:56:21

Btw I really dont envy you with 5 step kids, I read your other post and it must be really hard for you.

Petal02 Wed 24-Nov-10 14:07:59

I don't envy you either. Whilst The Waltons looks very cosy on TV, I can't imagine it's much fun in real life. Especially if your DH/DP is prone to Disney tendencies.

Just wanted to send you some moral support.

Bonsoir Wed 24-Nov-10 14:09:29

Gosh OP, four steps and one of your own sounds really tough. I have two stepsons and one DD and I don't mind admitting I find life much easier sans adolescent boys!

mjinhiding Wed 24-Nov-10 14:24:02

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Petal02 Wed 24-Nov-10 14:29:47

The trouble is, once you're in this sort of situation, there's absolutely nothing you can do to change it - other than leave your partner, which none of us want to do. The only way any of us can have a 'proper' relationship with our DP/DH is to endure their children.

I know I've mentioned this before, but I do wonder how many of our 'menfolk' would have set up home with us, if we'd had our mothers to stay on alternate weekends, or worse still, full time .....

mjinhiding Wed 24-Nov-10 15:46:59

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theredhen Wed 24-Nov-10 17:05:45

What I'm resenting at the moment is that DP is jealous of the (limited) time I spend with DS and yet I spend so much time with his DSC (more than 4/5ths) at the weekends and on the contact day during the week.

They're here 3 days a week averaged out over the year, so it's not like they just "visit" like my son does his Dad for one overnight a fortnight.

I feel torn between wanting my DS to go to his Dad's and wanting him to stay with me just so I can have some time with him. I'd never stop him going, but my ex is not reliable and sometimes I find myself hoping that he will ask to pick DS up later etc.

What has really upset me is that I had a dream the other night that I'm old and grey and I have no-one to look after me but DS, and yet, I have spent all my life bringing up these kids as my own, but with none of the benefits.

DS had a friend round yesterday and it was so nice to just have 2 kids here amusing themselves and giving us some peace and I found myself thinking that if we didn't have 5 children between us, maybe we could have had one of our own. I thought it didn't bother me only having the one, but maybe it does. :-(

wendihouse22 Thu 25-Nov-10 08:26:07

What a situation! All sorts of issues rearing their heads here..... If you had one of your own, together, it would certainly change the dynamic but what's hard now may be even more difficult with six!

I think you're amazing. I have one son of my own with my ex-husband, none with my new husband (though I'd have loved to, we're too old now!) and he has 3 from his first marriage of 21,20 and 16 and though they're grown up practically, they're still his "children", would prefer I weren't there and the acceptance I'd hoped might come has not. Not really, so it's hard.

It's absolutely natural that you feel as you do. There's no earthly reason why you (or ANY stepkids, for that matter) should blend together. I just keep reminding myself.....I was their father's choice, not theirs.

Petal02 Thu 25-Nov-10 10:26:13

Redhen - you comment that your DP is jealous of the limited time you spend with your son, and yet you spend a sizeable chunk of YOUR time with HIS children. It's one of those double-standards that seems to crop up frequently.

I expect your DP sees his children's visits as the most natural thing in the world, yet possibly sees your son as slightly intrusive?

We have a similar principle in our house - DH thinks nothing of having his son stay Thur-Sun on alternate weekends, but was mildly irritated (although tried not to show it) when my brother announced he was coming over.

It seems that many men are completely blinkered when it comes to their own children. Although I should point out there's been a slight improvement over the years - when we first got together (SS was 11) DH preferred it if I didn't have friends/family to visit on access weekends, as SS didn't like it. I soon managed to knock that one on the head - I argued that SS's mother doesn't refrain from having visitors on 'her' weekends, so why should I? It just illustrates how much DH pandered to his son. However SS still cringes if we mention we're having visitors on an access weekend, he really doesn't like mixing, and enjoys the womb-like existence that DH has created for him.

theredhen Thu 25-Nov-10 12:53:44

The thing is that I feel we do HAVE to blend. At the moment, I feel that DP resents DS, I am resenting his DSC and DS is resenting DSC although he also loves them to bits.

It's OK for me to spend time with DSC AND DS in my DP eyes, then we are treating them all the same, but he doesn't appreciate that even if my attention is split evenly (which it isn't), HIS DS get more of my attention than my DS does.

We were talking about Xmas the other night and DP said he expects to have DSC a LOT over Xmas and isn't that good news, but I know as soon as he doesn't have the DSC he wants to --get rid-- send off DS to his Dad's.

His DSC are not bad kids and it's the reason I even gave a man with 4 kids a chance and DP is great with the practicalities but it's still things like when he takes one DC to a friend or a sport etc., although he doesn't expect me to do the running around, he does leave me with 4 children in the house while he goes off for some one to one time with his DS or DD. No concept that I feel I have no space and it also explains why I can't seem to make our house feel like my home. I feel like a lodger.

I've also got some issues in that DS expensive toys are going missing (DSC all have their own but only want to play with DS's angry) and I think I've got to find £300 to replace it all if it's gone missing and I can't afford to do it. sad

Am so fed up right now, I really don't know if I can do this for the long haul. Feeling that I have wasted 2.5 years of my life, maybe I could have found someone who would have accepted DS and would have wanted a child with me before I'm too old - then I could have put my energy into my own family rather than someone elses. It should feel like my family, shouldn't it? sad

theredhen Thu 25-Nov-10 12:56:38

Why don't my strike outs ever work?

mjinhiding Thu 25-Nov-10 13:16:30

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theredhen Thu 25-Nov-10 15:56:56

Yes, I have often wondered what would happen if I offered to take DSS to football etc. I don't think he would like that at all. DP likes his one to one time with his DS and whilst I understand that, I think it's at a detriment to his girls and I know his ex wife has suggested the same thing.

As for having a baby of our own.

1. Physically impossible as DP has had the snip.
2. There's no way we could find the time or sacrifice my salary to do look after a small child and neither of us has any family who would help with childcare.

DP has told me that he would have loved to have had more children with his ex wife but she asked him to have the snip, then left him 18 months later. hmm. DP wouldn't consider a reversal and apparently he's had the sort you can't reverse anyway confused.

To be honest, it does grate a bit to be told he would have had another child with his ex wife but doesn't want one with me, although I don't think he really means it like that.

mjinhiding Thu 25-Nov-10 16:09:05

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theredhen Thu 25-Nov-10 16:15:17

Another issue, sigh, is the lack of communication, or only negative, communication from his ex.

We know DSC stuff has ended up there and not come back, so I don't hold out much hope for getting anything of DS's back if that's where it has gone. Nothing from either house is supposed to go to the other, but I know stuff from ours does go back there, but I've yet to see anything come the other way. hmm

Petal02 Thu 25-Nov-10 16:29:59

Sadly, I think your son should have a lockable box for his valuable toys. It's not fair for him to have a toy he's really fond of, only for some other kid to take it away. That sort of thing is a really big deal to children, I'd hate your son to think he was less important than your partner's children (even though clearly he's extremely important to you).

theredhen Thu 25-Nov-10 16:41:14

Yes, I'd already thought about the lockable box.

Do you know what breaks my heart? DS is so generous and loves to them borrow things and show them how they work etc.

Petal02 Thu 25-Nov-10 19:44:21

Your son sounds like a lovely child, a real credit to you. Which is even more of a reason why your stepchildren should not be allowed to take advantage of his good nature. I'd buy that lockable box ASAP if I were you.

theredhen Thu 25-Nov-10 20:48:46


He is no angel, but his heart is in the right place and for an only child, I'm often amazed at his un-selfishness.

Oh, he can be negative and whingy, he can be untidy and lazy, he can be "silly" and boisterous but he also knows that when he is, it doesn't get pandered to and he has to pull his weight and take responsibility for himself and his actions.

mjinhiding Thu 25-Nov-10 20:51:19

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theredhen Thu 25-Nov-10 20:53:57

Yes, I had already said to him that he needs to keep an eye on where things go and ask for them back if necessary. I had said I would keep his stuff in my room and then they can all ask for it if they want it and then I can monitor things. Trouble is, I can't keep everything in my room or in a lockable box.

mjinhiding Thu 25-Nov-10 21:01:04

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theredhen Thu 25-Nov-10 21:10:41


thank you for that, it's a good idea. smile

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