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Struggling with step parenting

(160 Posts)
natalie49 Fri 02-Aug-13 15:20:20

Hi, I am brand new to the site, and this is my first post. I visited mumsnet to see whether anybody else had similar problems to me with regards to step parenting and associated struggles. Of course you do!

This is my story (bear with me as I am not familiar with the shortcuts you use to describe relationships etc).

I have been with my husband for 9 years, married for 4.5 years. He came with baggage, 3 kids (13, 8 and 6 back in 2004) and in the throes of a messy divorce, but we survived his angst and financial pressures of getting divorced, and the kids lived with his Ex, which meant that we could get on with our own lives to a degree. He saw the kids on an adhoc basis, but he always kept a good level of contact with them, and we had them to stay occasionally.

Time has moved on of course, but not for the better. Ex wife has mental health problems which did not initially get diagnosed when the kids remained in her custody. Last year she proclaimed that she could no longer look after the 2 remaining kids in her care, social services got involved, and we were left with no option to house the 2 now teens, girl who is now 17.5, and boy is nearly 16.

I have never been a biological mother, and have found the past few months extremely hard, adjusting to having 2 moody teens in our house full time, and it is not a large house. We had to convert a double room into 2 single rooms just to accommodate them, which has cost us an arm and a leg. I really resent having them here, particularly now it is the school holidays, and am wishing the years away. SD in particular is very 2 faced and thinks she knows everything. I have been seeing a counsellor recently as I need to channel my anger and pent up frustration, as it was beginning to affect a previously rock solid marriage. I could write loads more, but really am just after a bit of advice on how to cope with this intrusion of space, lack of privacy and most of all TEENAGERS! Thanks for reading.

brdgrl Fri 06-Sep-13 10:51:35

I have just told DH I am leaving, cos he won't listen to lots of things I am trying to tell him about.
Oh, dear. It's really awful, isn't it. I'm sorry.
Have you and DH spoken about it since?

fackinell Fri 06-Sep-13 11:16:08

I'm in Scotland, Reluctant, and I love JRs grin I am indeed SE.

Had a mini heart attack there thinking Brdgrl was in the same boat too!! shock

Well I got a kiss and a I love you this am but it's a coincidence that DSD is staying over tonight and he won't want an atmosphere....I was told his parenting style (?) was none of my fucking business last night and he's pissed off that I have a friend coming today while he is at work. This isn't a home for me, I'm a cash cow, end of. angry

Petal02 Fri 06-Sep-13 13:30:31

Fackinell - is there any earthly reason why you shouldn't be having a friend over today??????

fackinell Fri 06-Sep-13 13:36:36

Not IMO, petal. He is a gay male, perhaps old fuddyduddy drawers has a problem with that, although he always moans if I have people round. wink

ReluctantStepMum Fri 06-Sep-13 19:02:17

My DH has said that he has been tracking my posts since I trusted him enough to show comments on here. He has over stepped the mark, and we have just argued big time about the fact he thinks I am angry all the time now, when in fact the only thing that makes me angry is having his kids 24/7. He has just told me to fuck off, so I will. Goodbye dear husband, you are blaming me for the breakdown of your 2nd marriage, when infact it is your first wife who has caused all of this by her incompetence at looking after the kids you chose to have in the first place. I have just made supper for your kids and I hope it burns. Hope you read this before I de register so that you can not keep a track on me.

ReluctantStepMum Fri 06-Sep-13 20:17:23

I've cooked the supper, been told I'm not wanted, and the kids seem to have used the toilet downstairs 4 times in about as many minutes. I hear that as it directly below our bedroom, that I have consigned myself to. I am going downstairs now to get a glass of wine, and they can all fuck off. 5th time toilet has flushed. No wonder our water bill has shot through the roof! I am an alien in my own home.......I need alternative living space without this crap.

daisychain01 Sun 08-Sep-13 09:01:12

Reluctant I have only just returned to your thread after the post I made in early August and am so shocked and saddened at how badly it is going wrong.

I recognise that you are there in that terrible, oppressive situation (I called it a pressure cooker and that is definitely what it must have been feeling like) and that it is easy to make comments about "those poor kids" etc etc. i too would feel very resentful if, like you, I had worked hard all my life for a good quality of life, to see it going down the drain. Your DHs children have never had continuity of care, that is awful and has led to their beyond out of control and awful behaviour, their mother clearly hasn't been capable of caring for her children, and sorry to say it, but your DH isn't actually doing anyone proud, is he! He doesn't seem particularly committed to bringing proper discipline into their upbringing, and neither is he sticking by you, his wife. As they say on MN "he needs to grow a pair".

Heaven alone knows if you will even read this message, as your last couple of posts sounded desperately sad, that you were going to walk away from your marriage. Again, all that noise and chaos I mentioned in my other post, upthread, seems to have clouded the fact that you love your husband. If only you could find some resolution, to at least give your marriage a chance.

You are a strong woman, you know your own mind, you need to do what you need to do. I just didn't want to "read and run" having read your latest posts. If there is anything I can do to support you, send me a MN email and I will be there for you.

daisychain01 Sun 08-Sep-13 09:07:33

And if MrReluctant reads this, please try to see it from a different point of view and not stay angry but try to take a role in getting things back on track. Maybe arrange to talk together, in a neutral place, to take the sting out of things - it is possible, it just needs you both to talk calmly.

Good luck.

cheesecake77 Thu 10-Oct-13 18:41:47

Hi all, I'm new to MN and looking for some advice and figured this would be the best place to get some honest answers!

My DSD used the iPad last weekend whilst staying over at our house for the weekend. She wasn't off the bloody thing all weekend. But hey, not my place to say anything. So she left herself logged into my twitter app on the iPad... I didn't mean to snoop and now I really wish I hadn't kept scrolling.

She comes across as sweet and innocent but she is a 15 year old girl and I remember what I was getting up to at 15 so her persona hasn't always washed with me blush. Anyhow, basically, her twitter has revealed her sexual appetite for want of a better description, she has a boyfriend, but maintains to her Dad, my DP that nothing has happened or will be happening any time soon and how much she wants to still enjoy her "childhood". Blowjobs, anal, girls, the lot. Through twitter there was a link to a Tumblr account, which I've never even heard of. I clicked on it. There are images on there of anorexic girls, female nudity, smoking, tattoos, drug use, suicide references and self harming. There are a couple of images of her smoking but the rest of the images appear to be just random pictures of other people, that could be found on the internet.

Now she has self-harmed in the past. She has been caught smoking in the past but allegedly that was all put behind her about 6 months ago. But the drugs, the lesbian and suicide stuff?!?!?!

I just don't know what to do with this. Do I tell my DP? It will crush him. Do I tell her Mother? Do I tell her directly what I accidentally found?

Our relationship isn't fantastic. Before me and DP got together he'd been single for 5 years so me coming along and "taking her Daddy away" has never really been forgiven but I rise above her sometimes underhand antics and keep the peace the majority of the time. We're civil aside from when she overdoes things in front of Daddy, conveniently.

I'm scared not to do anything about this in case she is in a bad place and is going down the wrong path with the wrong crowd, but I am scared in a sense to speak up because I should never have found what I did on the iPad.

Opinions and advice will truly be appreciated. I'm driving myself crazy with this and DP knows there's something up with me.

Thank you for reading.

Kate x

ChinaCupsandSaucers Thu 10-Oct-13 19:05:26

cheesecake you might want to start a new thread - but I know exactly what you are experiencing; I have been there.

Although my DSD was estranged from DP for over 2 years (aged 13-15), I was very aware of what she was doing as her Twitter feed, account, Instagram etc were all public - anyone could see them.

I suggested, on numerous occasions, that DP might want to take a look; I told him she was posting her phone number, when she was home-alone etc etc. I gave him details free classes for parents to learn the skills they needed to effectively keep their DCs safe online.
He buried his head in the sand and didn't bother.

Eventually, after DD had re-engaged with us - she ended up receiving death threats, came running to Daddy for help and it ended up as a police matter. It was messy and upsetting for everyone involved.
DP has now attended the courses and monitors things a lot more closely.

If you are Social Media savvy and you're worried about your DSD online activity, I suggest you monitor from a distance. They might need your help when it all goes wrong. I only intervened once - when she published MY address (before DP and I were living together) online. DP dealt with it but if he hadn't I would have done.

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