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Feeling like an outlaw in my own home

(7 Posts)
Shakenvac26 Sat 25-Jun-11 10:44:34

Just found the site and feel a complete relief that I am not alone in the struggle of coming to terms with being a sm, i have three stepkids two of which 13yr and 15yr old come to live with us 6 months ago unexpected & unannounced, and im really struggling i avoid going home, i take all the late night shifts i can so i dont have to be in the house while there not in bed, i find them spoilt, ungrateful , liars and idle there dad don't back me up on anything saying that there 'just kids' ive tried to bond with them but they do nothing but throw it back in my face, ive supported them financially as i was the main earner in the house at the time they moved in as my partner was out of work at the time although this has since changed but I dont think i ask too much by wanting them to wash up now and then when im working 15 hour shifts to contribute financially for there hobbies and essentials, his 2nd wife and mother of his third child who dont live with us is also a problem as she sends me abusive emails, spreads viscious rumours about me, turns up at our house for no apparent reason other than to make me feel uncomfortable in my own home. I realise he had kids when i met him but had I of known i would of inherited two teenagers full time, a 7yr old thats so rude and spoilt, two ex wifes and the most evil inlaws ive ever encountered i would of ran a mile. I love my partner very much and when the children aren't around we get on perfectly but I feel like an outlaw under the roof i pay for, im trying the detachment approach but im just feeling more like a ticking timebomb his sd helps herself to everything in my room including my underwear! And he cobstantly defends rhere corneri feel like the worse person in the world wishing they didnt exist, i dont want to live my partner but i cant stay like this either, im not cut out for it.

allnewtaketwo Sat 25-Jun-11 17:15:05

Oh dear shaken, I really feel for you
Did you have any say whatsoever when they moved in with you. What so many people don't appreciate, is how hard it is to be (and especially live with) children in whose upbringing you were able to play no part. I've gone through all that trying to be out while the DSCs are here, and it helped quite a bit, but obviously that is not exactly a solution when they live with you!

One feeling I often had was that of being really outnumbered. Almost like you're the visitor or the outcast, despite it being your home. Actually I couldn't bear it when the children were younger and I'm honestly not sure how I got through it. it used to get to the point where there was actually no free seat for me in my own lounge, and even if there was, xbox was playing on the tv and there was no way I wanted to be in the room anyway.

Have you told your DH how you feel? The only way I can see this working is if you both jointly agree some groundrules and standards of behaviour with respect to the children.

Shakenvac26 Tue 28-Jun-11 11:38:58

I'm so glad I'm not alone I was starting to fear I was becoming one of these evil step mums from the fairy tale books, it was never something we were able to discuss as the children moved in so sudden it was pretty much here's the kids and here's there stuff as they had a volatile relationship with there stepfather which makes me feel even worse for not coping with this well as I certainly don't want to give them yet another unhappy atmosphere to live in but what your saying about the x box and the seat etc is exactly how I feel I have kept alot of my possessions In boxes as I don't trust them not to take my things and while I appreciate they mean no harm using my straighteners etc they are still mine and I would like to be asked to agree rather than them just be taken and have to search round the rooms for my hundred pound straighteners to find them flung on the floor. I just feel a compete lack of respect in so many areas, I dread the food shopping because I resent buying food that they will take the Mick in eating ie the entire pack of crisps in a couple of days that should last the week, it seems to be all the little things that are slowly wearing me out, it hasn't helped having them straight from teenagers as you say you have no input in there upbringing or an established bond to get through the slamming doors back chatting eye rolling stage, I really don't want to walk away from the relationship with there father but he seems to be unwilling to see my point and can't understand why I feel the way I do, my best friends his sister so I'm struggling to get a balanced opinion or support, sometimes you need someone to say your being petty and sometimes to say your right just to stop you going insane !

YoungMotherTubby Tue 28-Jun-11 12:14:02

My heart goes out to you. I've seen this from all sides. Was/am a SM and my first brood have a step-dad.

My ex husband came with a daughter (8). She was the most spoiled child that ever lived - as her mother chose to have no contact with her, the family overcompensated. She demanded things bought for her all the time, dressed a lot older, was wearing full face make up from 8 years. I accepted that they were a package but hadn't realised that the parenting was actually done by my ex MIL and my ex was hardly involved.
If I was at work I dreaded coming home and if I was at home I dreaded her coming in from school. She also used to lie and steal my things and I was made to feel petty mentioning these things. She went out of her way to cause friction. Anyway work was a respite - and I was the earner too as ex was more often out of work than in it.
From that experience I would not recommend step-parenting to anyone - certainly continue to have a relationship with DP if possible. She left home eventually and I was ecstatic.
However the way I look at it was I endured years of horrible feeling in my stomach, feeling used and having little opinion in the house I was paying for - and if I had my time again would not be a SM. I had my own DC with ex and if I hadn't I would have left. She took no part in being a big sister.
Not saying I was perfect and I'm sure if she were asked she didn't like the situation either.
Fast forward a few years and split from ex (yey) and have re-married. So now my DH is a step-dad and he finds it extremely hard. He finds the kids disrespectful to me, use whatever they want, eat everything so nothing lasts, constantly pushing the rules. I'm piggy in the middle and forever trying to keep the peace and I see it from both sides.

Again if I could have forseen the problems it would have been better all round to keep relationship with DH but not to have moved in together. It's getting to the point where it looks like we might split up yet we love each other.

Anyway not sure if any of this helps - my advice is that if your voice can be heard then you might get somewhere -or the alternative is whether you can live like this until the youngest is old enough to leave home.

BTW unless anyone has been a SP they will have no idea how wearing and frustrating it is - you have all my sympathy.

Shakenvac26 Fri 01-Jul-11 11:57:32

thank you so much for your words im so grateful to know that i am not the fairytale wicked step mother for feeling the way i do and that others have gone through it too, i really feel for your situation but hopefully having been on the other side it will give you more strength to get through the arguments, its getting to the separation stage here too, my partner even said to the kids that if things don't change were going to split up over it but it probably lasted about a day, what i want is to say that i'll move out and we'll stay togather but just not live togather because i can't cope with the kids but i know that deep down it'll be the end anyway because he'll say whats the point in being togather if you don't want to live togather and the thought of being without him tears me in two.

Everything you've said is so true though the stealing, the lieing the being made to feel petty for being upset by there actions, work is definately a safe haven but then i kinda end up resenting it too because i get myself wound up thinking why should i have to work 15 hour shifts to pay for them and then feel like i cant buy certain foods or objects because of them, or even to feel like i have to avoid them when they cant even mutter a thank you and roll there eyes at me if i even say anything to them, if i mention a bad word to there dad he jumps down my throat with why cant everyone just get on and why cant i give him a break! i'm in tears at the thought of going back home and i've really tried ive booked time of work and took them shopping to try and bond and i didnt get a thank you or even so much of a conversation all day. When his SD does speak its so sharp and blunt it just gets my back up straight away, I would of got such a hiding if i spoke to a dog the way they speak to me. I've really tried to speak to them and i don't think its personal at all i think there just spoilt rude idle kids and they cant help the way they are anymore than i can help being offended by it.

I must pack my suitcase at least once a week and i'll gear myself up that i'm not taking it anymore, I deserve better etc. but then something will always stop me at the door whether my partner rings and reminds me how much i love him or a photo, a text just something will make me think actually i can do it so i unpack, put the dinner on and wait for the barrage of attitude when everyone gets home or even opt to go into work hours earlier than my shift with no one even aware of my living hell.

Somedays i just wish that i didn't love my partner because it would make it so much easier to walk away. it really would.

Somebody must have a step parent success story or are we all doomed lol.

x

brdgrl Fri 01-Jul-11 13:33:51

I feel very much the same way, most of the time. It HAS gotten lots better, over a couple of years...and that is what I have to remind myself CONSTANTLY or I too would be long gone.

If your partner won't at least support you in making and enforcing some house rules, I don't see how it can work. It takes DH and I ages and too much time and too many arguments to decide on what the rules should be, let alone how to enforce them...but at least he now supports the idea that there should BE rules. It is a long process, and I still feel like there is a long way to go before it is 'good enough' for me.

I never thought I would be the kind of parent to have so many RULES about things...or put so much energy into it...but in my experience, it is the ONLY way to make it work when you throw a bunch of people together to live, all of whom are used to their own way of doing things...

Only a couple of weeks ago, after another one of my things was broken in the kitchen (because it always seems to be our things, have you noticed, lol?) - I took all my pretty dishes and things and put them in my study (I am lucky to at least have one room that is all mine and off limits...). I felt stupid about it later, and put some of them back, because hey - it is MY HOUSE and I want MY THINGS around me...but that is how I feel sometimes - why can't I have nice things, why can't I eat what I like for meals, why do the kids act so unappreciative of the efforts I make....it IS very disheartening.

overthehillmum Sat 02-Jul-11 23:26:39

my DP moved in with me when my kids were 14 & 15, we had a few rocky times, he nearly moved out at least 3 times in the first 6 months...same things, kids being a bit disrespectful, not treating his stuff properly or taking it without asking, eating all the biscuits (we now call it biscuitgate), but I worked hard at trying to make everyone behave better. He had to back down a bit and realise it was hard for them to accept someone into their house after 10 years of it just being us, but also I worked on them to make them realise that they had to give him respect and realise their actions had consequences. It took a bit of time but we are all a family now, 4 years on and both of them consider him a father figure.

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