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Step children - advice on getting on with them and ex-wife mantra of 'give me more money!'

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langalini Tue 16-Aug-11 11:25:49

I have just read an old blog about someone having a tough time with 3 step children and really sympathised with them. I have only one, he is 9 years old and has the ability to woo me one minute, when I become putty in his hand, then cut me down with the severest of hatred the next. I don't know what I would do if there were more step children....probably run for the hills.

My step child lives with his mother and visits us regularly - although access has been cut from 45% of the time with us to about 15% of the time. My husband and his ex-wife both have joint custody. The access has been cut because we are financially unable to pay what his mother wants us to pay (a figure that is a monthly full-time wage for some! originally it was over £1100 pm plus school fees, uniform etc etc! he would give the clothes off his back to see his son) She left my husband for someone with a large income and estate. We can not compete with her current lifestyle so our maintenance to her is bound to be a drop in the ocean, although significant to us.

My husband is a very loving hands on Daddy and he never wanted the family to split, it still breaks his heart every time his son has to go back home. He too came from a divorced family in similar circumstances. I just think it is a very sad scenario and I dont think people really realise what severe damage they do when they split up a family for their own gain. However I have never been in such a scenario so I dont really know how it feels.

Anyway to add...My stepson arrives in designer clothes and has often thrown himself on the floor in floods of tears if he has got them dirty as 'Mummy will be cross'. He will then throw the blame at myself or husband as if we put the mud there....this is typical...if there is a drama to be caused he will work out how best to get there! The clothes he has with us range from Next sale to Sainsbury's and Asda....he always looks nice but if he wants to play football in the garden he can get mud on them...he is 9 afterall! I met him when he was 6 and she has frequently dressed him in ralph lauren jumpers, white armani jeans....need I say more. So I am not surprised her bills are high, along with the ponies, horse lorry, endless competition costs (this is her sport that she is encouraging him to do)...I could go on. It is lovely for him to have such opportunities but if he lived with us, we simply couldn't afford to do such sports.

Being a step mother is a thankless task, it takes up most of my thoughts. I wrack my brain just thinking how to have a simple easy time with him. I have come up with various ways but none seem to be failsafe. Someone said 'detach' yourself. Provide food, clean clothes and bedding but ignore the looks, tantrums, moods, sweet talking when he wants something or wants me to side with him against Daddy. It is hard if you have a heart and all you do is feel sorry for the 'adult' situation he has to deal with and the poison his mother drip feeds him. he brings a dark sullen cloud to our household (Daddy, me and our one year old)and turns us upside down. My husband and I have tried all of the above and insert 'that's nice' whenever a loaded statement is made (on average 1 statement per 30 mins)...i.e. the minimum is.. Mummy's gravy is more thick than yours. Even though he has asked for 2nds. I have resisted him to wear that at least haha! Last week, he went away with his mother he waited for my husband to withdraw some spending money from the cash machine before telling him he didnt love him anymore and wants to change his surname. This is when my husband finds it difficult to just say 'that's nice'.

Hurrumph. Anyone had similar circumstances with successful outcomes?

Thank you

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