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Step child/ teenage relationship with step mum

(6 Posts)
bubsnumber1 Thu 13-Nov-14 12:06:36

Here is my situation. I have been with my now husband for 5 years, married for 2 years. His son (my stepson) is 13 years now. I have a 15 month old with my husband and am pregnant again, due feb 2015. (He is most definately included as a family and is praised and rewarded when good and we do things as a family when he has not done bad things, so please bare in mind he is not pushed out or forgotten).
My stepson is very defiant, abusive and pretty much a bully towards myself, who normally has responsibility for looking after him as husband works some night shifts. His behaviour is also getting out of control, not using his phone to tell anybody where he is, ignoring or turning his phone off, leaving school at 3pm, not arriving home till sometimes as late as 7pm even though it's dark ( latest was 9.30pm), his mates abusing me down the phone calling me things like bitch and fucking slut, doing no homework (grades are suffering enormously), shoplifting, messing around in class and distracting others, getting lots of detentions (sometimes as many as 3 a week) and not attending them, lying all the time and most recently, setting fire to paper and tissue in his bedroom, denying it was him and blaming mates for putting burning paper in his bag which we know is a lie. This was all whilst we were in the house putting everyone in danger, and the fact he denies it was him makes it even worse. I might also add that I suspected him pinching my 15 month old when she was 3 months or less, resulting in her screaming out in pain. This happened more than once and again he denied it but didn't do it again after being confronted and told off for it. I am very unhappy looking after him/having him around and am fed up with being the bad one, especially when he is not my child. I also feel scared and afraid of what he will do next, and am especially afraid for my 15 month old and unborn child.

What would people do in my situation as I am contemplating leaving with my 15 month old for safety reasons, because I have had enough and it is not fair that the 15 month old hears all the arguments and has to be in a dangerous and hostile environment. Some say it should be him that leaves? Also, I m sad about the idea of leaving on the other hand as I love my husband but at the moment feel happiness and safety of my other children and my happiness to bring my children up is more important. Thanks

StardustBikini Thu 13-Nov-14 13:13:55

Why are you willing to take responsibility for your DHs DS? He is defiant, abusive, puts the household at risk and you should not feel that this is your problem to resolve.

If your DH is unwilling to change his hours or address the problem, then your choices are limited, but very clear. If your DSS does come home after school, report him as missing. If he damages/sets fire to items in your home, call the police. If his friends are abusive and harassing, block them and report them. And if he lays a hand on you or your DD, report him for assault and see it through.

Don't engage in arguments with him, or your DH about it. State your boundaries and intentions and then follow through with them.

You are not doing your DSS any favours by protecting him from the natural consequences of his behaviour. The youth justice system exists for a reason; it applies age-appropriate consequences to young people who have made poor choices. The adult justice system is far less accomodating - it's better for those lessons to be learnt while he is still young.

bubsnumber1 Thu 13-Nov-14 15:36:18

Hi thanks for response. My husband has a job where he is sometimes on call evenings so can be home very late. He has no choice about the shifts and would mean giving up his job so it's not that he is not willing to change his shifts, but can't as there are bills to be paid and jobs are pretty scarce. Secondly, we have reported him missing before, had police involved when he was shoplifting, reported our concerns regarding hurting the other children, had social services and mental health involved. We feel let down by the system as keep getting told there is nothing wrong. We are not just letting all this stuff go, but whoever we tell and ask for help from, nothing seems to get done or change and the situation is just getting worse which is where I have got to the point of feeling the only way out is to leave.

StardustBikini Thu 13-Nov-14 16:46:17

I think you might be right.

I have also experience police and social services involvement in my life due to my DSC behaviour, with limited support forthcoming. My DH has always respected my boundaries, and his relationship with his DC's is now indepdendent of our family.

Is your DSS mum involved in his life at all? I assume from your post that he lives with his Dad and you?

bubsnumber1 Thu 13-Nov-14 20:14:39

Yes she is but keeps saying she doesn't want him because of his behaviour. He was living fulltime with his mum, then came to us fulltime because of social issues at his mums inc ex boyfriend who has now gone. He now goes to is mums 2 weeks and ours 2 weeks so 50/50 care, which is better as far as the burden on myself and our children goes, but the two weeks he is with us are pure hell 99% of the time, e.g. last nites episode of fire starting!!!

robotroy Mon 17-Nov-14 13:57:41

He sounds like a very sad young man, who feels very rejected by his parents. What a shame for him and for you trying so hard for him, what a star you are.

Given his age, and the danger of the consequences, I wonder if its worth doing as others suggest here, but also to sit him down as part of that and be honest with him. Tell him that he's a big lad now and you get this situation isn't ideal for either of you, but that his dad loves him, and he will always be a part of your family and home, so long as he can not abuse or endanger people within it. Tell him honestly that whilst you have been massively patient, your patience is finite, and your tolerance of risk to the other kids is low, so he needs to understand that he must show a minimum level of behaviour in your home for things to stay as they are, otherwise you will have no choice but to split the home. It's not what you want, you want all of you to continue to be a family together, but he needs to understand now the very real consequences if things continue. I would try to get him to open up, one last effort to say I'm sorry it feels like a rejection of you that dad works late but he really doesn't want to, this is how things are and I want us to all be happy here together, you deserve a happy home.

I know it sounds really hard but his actions are very extreme and I agree you can't risk the others. Things just seem so sad for him that I would try to give him that one last chance if you can, but I think tough love says you can't let him carry on going through life thinking its ok to be abusive to women, you're a decent woman and he needs to realise you can not treat decent women that way. What a sad situation for all of you.

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