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Us and them, or blend? Sorry, long and boring...

(3 Posts)
Celticcat Fri 17-May-13 12:13:55

Hi all,
Have been trying to lovingly and tactfully blend a family of 5 for 4 years now. Am now officially giving up (unless somebody out there can convince me there is an obvious trick I've not yet discovered).
I tried and failed to create a family atmosphere for all involved, how can I now start to feel good about myself again? I put so much blood, sweat and tears time and energy into nudging everybody closer that I'm now at a bit of a loss.

* tried the tough love parenting technique, I.e. dh and I are a team, all our kids are on an equal footing amongst themselves and should learn slowly but surely to do stuff for themselves.
Some positive results here from kids, dh too old and stupid set in his ways to change (we're same age, mid 40s, he's actually a few months younger...)

* discussed and set boundaries, again having adults together on one side, all dcs on the other. Once more, all kids benefited immediately and obviously from this simple structure, felt secure, loved (appropriately as child and not as surrogate partner) and tensions lessened at once.
Dh, needless to say, seemed to feel cheated by this method, losing bffs.

* finally decided on couple counseling, especially as my moaning on mn had many readers making me aware of dh ea tendencies. Being heard and supported (by counsellor) gave me an enormous lift and loads of energy and good-will to carry on.

Yes, rereading this its kind of clear we are all making headway EXCEPT DH! It's like he sees progress and outwardly applauds it but then undermines me ASAP when he sees control over dcs slipping away.
I always gave him the benefit of the doubt but last night he confessed he was a bit scared of me (I had asked him nicely to stop bullying me). When I asked him why, he started to say 'because you ...', then I stopped him and told him to rephrase that into 'I'm scared of you because I ...blah blah blah'. However, he could not finish the sentence, admit own weaknesses etc.

So do I now simply concentrate on myself and parenting ds, and politely ignore dh and his dsc? We have a lovely home that ds and I love, dss is spending half his time with us, boys get on great together. I think I love them both too much to give up on this.
On the other hand, dh drives me to distraction, using, I feel, his dsd and her thinly veiled contempt of me to make me feel small and controllable.
Its like arm wrestling instead of holding hands... Xx

Mueslimorning Fri 17-May-13 13:04:40

Don't want to read and run, OP, but dp and I probably going to split up because he can't get his head round treating me like a partner, nothing close to 4 years work though. Disney parenting never stopped. Shame.

Celticcat Fri 17-May-13 16:07:14

A shame indeed.
Probably wont be discussing anything more today, dh says he feels ill. Not sure if this is a ploy, bad enough I suppose that I don't trust him on this...

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