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The Teenage Years - hi i'm new!

(5 Posts)
MegandWesley Mon 13-Jun-11 11:37:25


I've been reading through some of these posts and its really nice to find some step-parents to talk to, I don't get to hear step-parent views very often, on the forum i used to use I was one of only 2 step-mums.

I don't have a specific question, but would really just like to hear from those of you with teenage step-children...

I've been really lucky that I have always really loved my step-kids (2 girls and 1 boy), I first me them when the youngest was 4 (as a friend at first) and I got together with their dad when she almost 6 and oldest was almost 10. As you all know step-parenting has its hard times, but generally I would say I have been very lucky and really really enjoyed 90% of those early years - we have/had a strong bond as a family and we managed to maintain a reasonable relationship with their mum and step-dad - generally backing each other up and making sure we were always on the same page, communication was pretty good.

However as the kids have gotten older - oldest 17 and lives with us, middle 15 and youngest 13 live with their mum, its getting harder and harder - as I guess parenting does in general? Our relationship with the ex and step-dad have deteriorated as we no longer seem to be on the same page with how to parent teenagers. Generally anything to do with the kids and their mum and step-dad is increasingly accompanied by immense stress.

I have to admit that I have got to the stage where I am counting down the time until they are all 18. I know this sounds awful, and I feel very sad about it, but the light at the end of tunnel for me is that day (in roughly 4.5 years time) when we no longer 'have' to have anything to do with the ex wife and her husband. I hope also that the kids will have come through the worst of the teenage years and be on some kind of path to finding a life of their own!

I dream of days in the future when my son's (he's 15 months) big sisters and brother come to visit for a family get together's and they are well into their 20's and I can talk to them all like adults, and they can talk to each other like adults! I can't wait for all this teenage angst to be behind us!

I just hope and pray that I am not dissapointed. I do know that there will still be many hard times and heart aches to come but I hope that when they are older it will be easier. I hope that the only time I have to be in the same room as the ex-wife and step-dad is at weddings!!

Is anyone else feeling the same? Or does anyone else have step-kids who are now adults? What are your thoughts on what being a step-parent will be like once they are adults?


anon121 Mon 13-Jun-11 12:38:57

Hi and welcome. Have read your post and some of it seems alot like what I thought a few years ago. Currently have 2 DSKs - oldest 18 and 15 yr old. Have them 50/50 with their DM, and I agree it gets harder as they get older. Just wanted to say that I was doing the same as your, counting down the days till they hit 18 etc - but NOTHING happens any different when that happens. They still do / act exactly as before, and we are still responsible for them. We do still have to deal with ex, we do still have to give lifts, and they will not necessarily be through the worst of teenage years (mine certainly hasnt!!)

Not much help really... just dont want you to rely too much on the 18 thing


MegandWesley Mon 13-Jun-11 12:59:06

Thanks hun. That's what I mean when I say i hope I'm not dissapointed! I guess I keep thinking that when the youngest is 18 the oldest will 22/23 and the middle 21ish, so from there on it might start to get easier? Especially the financial burden to the ex - at least then money will be going directly to the children when they need it and we won't need to feel like these two people are always involved in our finances (money is always a very stressful subject and the one that causes the most grief).

In what ways do you still have to deal with the ex? And why do you need to give an 18 year old lifts? (we live in a city so they all get public transport so it may different for you i guess?) Do kids not need to start being more responsible for themselves once they are over 18? Maybe I am being very naive!

Jeez, i really hope they are over the worst of the teenage years by that age!! Both girls have been really really hard work since the age of 12!! We have constant problems with school and them getting into trouble, I really hope that they have more sense by the age of 18!

WkdSM Mon 13-Jun-11 14:10:44

I have 2 SS's - 20 and 17.
DSS1 has had a bit of a rough time last couple of years (Mum forced him out when maintenance stopped, crappy job working long shifts etc) - we have a great relationship with him and are taking him and his GF away for a week so we can actually get to see each other (he lives 4 hours drive away). Level of maintenance we pay for SS2 means we can't really help Dss1 financially at moment.
SS2 lived with us for 3 years and is now back with mum. He is not a very nice person, and only in contact when he wants something. Like 4k for car insurance!
Basically - as a step parent I think you end up liking them as adults if they are people you would consider 'nice' - and not liking them if they are users. SS2 is very like him mum - I can see why DH got a divorce!!

anon121 Mon 13-Jun-11 14:27:21

I was rather dissapointed - dont know why I thought it would all get better when 18 was reached. No idea how it will be when she is older, maybe she will become human sometime and become a likeable person like WkdSM said - it depends on each person I guess.
Oh we live in a city with busses too (and DSD has a bus pass - but to actually walk to the bus stop when she has things to carry? or its raining? are you kidding? And of course busses stop at certain times!)
What I have found is that there isnt a switch in them that clicks over when reached 18 and then they start to suddenly think and do things for themselves...oh noooo it just carries on!
We still deal with Ex as DSD still lives at both houses, so when she misbehaves, we hear about it, when something happens, we hear about it etc when her DM has a fight with her, we get to have her instead
Can you tell its only the girl who causes problems?

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