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I'm feeling angry - please remind me to detach!

(20 Posts)
concretekitten Sun 15-Feb-15 19:11:41

Sorry just needing a bit of support right now.

DH has fallen asleep on sofa and his phone was sat there all unattended so I had a little read through his messages.

I don't know why, this sort of thing never ends well!

His ex is just such a cow n I read all these messages slagging me off.

Basically, in her eyes, anything that goes wrong is my fault...it really isn't! I leave DH to sort things out himself these days and I try to not get involved.

Part of me feels like 'fuck it, I don't give a shit' but another part of me can't help but take it personally.

I hate it when this happens, it makes me just want to walk away cos it feels like it's all just never ending.

Everything we do and say is under scrutiny and open to criticism. I've had enough!

I know I need to detach, but it's easier said than done sad

Hissy Sun 15-Feb-15 19:21:53

Wtf are you doing reading his messages?

Really?

Does he know you do this?

What's that saying about people who eavesdrop? Eventually they'll hear something about themselves they don't like?

Let her think what she likes, as long as your dh doesn't agree with her and supports you, where is the problem.

You have no right to go through his phone - how would you like itbid he read all your messages?

TheMumsRush Sun 15-Feb-15 19:25:16

If I found text slagging me off I'd be livid too, but only if dh didn't defend me.

I've done a lot of detaching recently and it been a wake up call for DH

concretekitten Sun 15-Feb-15 19:38:40

I know I shouldn't read his messages, I wouldn't normally but we've been to a christening this afternoon, had a couple of glasses of bubbly and it seemed like a good idea when I was tipsy. Actually no it didn't seem like a good idea, but I just had a moment of inquisitiveness. Stupid I know! I'm a nosey cow!

Tbh DH doesn't so much defend me but he doesn't defend himself either.
He doesn't give a flying hoot what she thinks or says so just ignores her BS.

Hissy Sun 15-Feb-15 19:55:19

So take the lesson learned here, trust your h and follow his lead, what his ex says does her no favours and just alienates her more from your h.

Relax, stop giving a shit about what others think/say, she's never going to be your greatest Fan is she? So don't expect anything different from her.

concretekitten Sun 15-Feb-15 20:33:11

It's just so frustrating because tbh she's a total tit, far from an ideal parent but she's so quick to criticise us. I admit I've made mistakes in the past but ffs how long will she hold the past against me for?

Sometimes I just wish she could fall off the face of the earth!

N what is really annoying is that when she does this kind of thing, it just makes me feel negatively towards the kids, so it's them she's damaging.

And I wonder why she bothers slagging me off to DH, is she hoping he'll actually change his opinion of me? I don't get what she's trying to achieve?!

Yes definitely lesson learned.

DH tells me everything but of course he tries to keep things from me if he thinks it'll hurt me.

Hissy Sun 15-Feb-15 21:58:49

She is not your concern. You have no right to snoop on a man who otherwise deserves your trust.

What she does should make you feel sorry for the children, not hold it against her. She has her own reasons for her behaviour- right or wrong - but you can't change what she does.

She's bitter, rejected/unhappy/who knows.

She's an ex, perhaps for good reason.

Her children however spend time away from her in another family unit that she's excluded from. That's hard. Even if she caused it.

You don't know what is going on in her life/head, so just try to focus on your dh, his children and yourself - not necessarily in that order, but you get the picture.

Hissy Sun 15-Feb-15 21:59:27

Sorry, not hold it against them (the dc)

FlossyMoo Sun 15-Feb-15 22:23:59

You know it was a daft thing to do.

I can see why you are upset I would be too however it doesn't make you feel negative towards the kids unless you choose to so please don't use that as an excuse.

Your OH has the right idea and he does not rise to her and neither should you. He hasn't done anything wrong....you have by snooping. You reap what you sow OP, sorry but you brought this on yourself.

Put it to bed and move on because if you let it eat you up the only person it will affect is you. Keep your nosy nose out nest time smile

Sethspeaks Mon 16-Feb-15 07:56:56

Like you say lesson learnt.

And leave the children out of it. There is absolutely no need to feel negatively towards them over their mums behaviour (and possibly yours - if you made "mistakes" that she is angry about).

Be cross at her for the texts, be cross at yourself for snooping get or whatever those mistakes were, just leave the children out of it they haven't done anything.

concretekitten Mon 16-Feb-15 08:40:41

Thanks, I feel a bit better this morning.

I don't hold it against the DSC but it has upset me. I think it's upset me because for the past year or so I've been putting a lot of effort in as a SM, planned a lot, done birthday parties, bought them their xmas presents, planned holidays, planned days out...DH is a brilliant father but if it was left to him those things wouldn't happen.

But now I read that my efforts aren't good enough, 'we' don't do enough for them etc etc.

So I think I'm going to take a step back and let DH be the one who buys their presents and plans days outs etc, then if she wants to criticise us I won't take it so personally.
I'm not saying I won't do anything or make any input but I just won't put so much energy in to making everything perfect for them, DH can take some more of the responsibility for them.

It's like at christmas i ran myself ragged making everything perfect, I was poorly and in shopping centres late at night after work trying to find perfect presents for everyone, including DSC and my inlaws.
It was too much, so even before I saw these texts critiscing what we bought them, I decided next year DH can take responsibility for DSC's and his family's presents. It'll probably mean everyone will get gift vouchers which he buys on xmas eve but that's not my problem.

Hissy Mon 16-Feb-15 13:10:16

As long as you, your H and your DSC are happy, then that is all that matters.
I'm guessing that precisely because you are doing such a good job is the reason the ex is being so nasty.

Agree though that their dad needs to step up

19lottie82 Mon 16-Feb-15 14:53:04

it sounds like she's looking for an argument, or at the very least a reaction, so maybe your DH just doesn't want to give her the satisfaction?

My DH's ex was / is exactly the same, if it makes you feel any better.
she is an alcoholic and we got together 4 months after he left her (taking their 2 DD's with him). She ended up unemployed, living back with her dad and having lost her husband and only having supervised contact with her kids, due to her addiction, When we first (accidently) crossed paths, she refused to look me in the eye and scuttled away without even saying a word. 30 seconds later he got a text saying "oh well at least I know im skinnier and prettier!"

Just shows how insecure she is, and utterly bitter that I'm now with her ex and helping him bring up her kids (and totally her own fault). Kind of makes me feel a bit sorry for her really......

Snoozybird Mon 16-Feb-15 15:13:21

For the first couple of years as a SM I voluntarily did a lot of the present buying, meal planning, shopping, cooking, washing, ironing and cleaning up after my DSCs (I have no DC of my own so I wasn't just adding a bit extra work onto jobs I would've already been doing). Don't get me wrong DH did these things as well, but I did proportionally more than I needed to as I felt I wasn't pulling my weight in our relationship otherwise.

However as time went on I started to feel resentful that my role was taken as much for granted by all parties as much as if I were investing time and effort in my own children. The final straw came when DH was agonising one year over what to buy DSC'S mum for Mother's Day (nothing wrong with that) but didn't acknowledge how much I also contributed to his kids' upbringing. DH mistakenly believed that I would find helping to parent his children as rewarding as he did, forgetting the fact that whilst the DSC and I got on well, I wasn't receiving unconditional love from them like he was.

I've since taken a step back and now play more of a role that I see the average step dad doing i.e providing my partner with emotional support and grown-up company, spending time with the DSC, but leaving most of the practical logistics to him. It took me a while to realise that what might be considered a fair division of chores in a "together" family didn't translate to me doing the same amount in a step family set-up and that I wasn't being unfair by not helping out with at least 50% of the child related stuff. Don't get me wrong, I still do some practical stuff like meal planning, shopping, laundry etc but I now help out rather than assume responsibility for these kinds of tasks. It's helped ease my resentment quite a bit.

You said in your OP that you leave your DH to sort most things out himself these days but then you go on to say in your update how much effort you've put in over the last year. Don't hesitate to step back a little further if you need to. It's a shame that the DSC might miss out on a couple of things if you're not arranging them anymore, but remember it's his responsibility not yours, and that they'll benefit much more in the long run from you not feeling negatively towards them for their parents' failings.

concretekitten Mon 16-Feb-15 16:15:24

lottie yes she's always looking for an argument or a reaction from DH, I think she wants to know she can still push his buttons if she wants to, to think that she still has an affect on him and I think she hopes that she can cause DH and I to argue.
She blames me for things DH doesn't do with the kids but actually it's nothing to do with me, I don't control what he does or doesn't do, he's just not a very pro-active person. At the end of the day they are his responsibility, not mine.

snoozybird when I said I leave DH to sort things out himself, I meant in regards to arrangements with his ex, their arguments etc. in the early days I got involved and when she was being unreasonable I told her and I defended DH and myself when I felt I needed to.
As a result she now hates me. So I just keep my mouth shut now. She frustrates me to hell but I stay out of it.

Step parenting is definitely the least rewarding job of all, at least with your own children they show you love and affection and you know that the work u put in will pay off.
With step parenting you do all the hard bits and the good bits are a lot less frequent and tbh I'm not too sure that my DSC will grow in to well rounded adults, their mum has messed with their heads so much and filled their minds with crap, they're already displaying problems.

Anyway, I'm going to stop thinking about it. I've got bigger problems at the mo so don't want to focus my energy on things I have no control over x

Snoozybird Mon 16-Feb-15 16:39:00

Oh I see, well if it makes you feel any better I kept my nose well out of things between DH and his ex but I still got the blame if things didn't go her way! Easiest target I guess.

newstart15 Mon 16-Feb-15 19:49:02

My DH ex was similar and as I assumed her complaints were rational I felt that we responded in a rational way the problem would go away, however she was never soothed.Finally one day I had the lightbulb moment and realised her angry rants were designed to get a reaction from us and nothing she raised was reasonable.Once I understood this we reacted differently, no response unless it needed a specific answer.She did escalate for a while, ringing the home phone but it definitely reduced.

DSD sadly did witness her mum do this and attended counselling to help her deal with her mums anger.Now at 16 she can talk about those times and whilst she loves her mum she knows she was unreasonable.Dh keeping a cool head and not responding was the best approach.

The other thing to be aware of is that the ex was very unhappy, happy people dont behave like this.She eventually divorced her 2nd husband and is now remarried and seems happier.I glad for her and DSD but do regret how I didn't just detach earlier as I wasted energy on something I could never influence or fix.

Wdigin2this Mon 16-Feb-15 22:28:27

Well, I'm not going to criticise you for snooping as I've done it myself! It's not nice, it's not fair, but bloody hell, there are things I would have been kept in the dark about for ever if I hadn't done it....so I'm not apologising for it!

concretekitten Tue 17-Feb-15 11:05:40

newstart you are right, she definitely isn't happy. She was much better when she started her new relationship and at the time that proved to me that the way she had been previously was down to her jealousy.
But for probably about the past 10 months it's gradually got worse and just continues to get worse.
It isn't just us she's like this with, she falls out with all her friends and family, she's part of a huge family but speaks to very few of them..there's always a drama going on! It was one of the main causes of her and DH's split.
DH is such a laid back character it makes me wonder why on earth they were ever together, he thinks she was only with him because she thought she could control him, she was wrong!

newstart15 Tue 17-Feb-15 14:42:41

Concrete, seems like a similar situation.Dh's ex lashes out at most people - sadly DSD is often on the receiving end of it.She is likely to be looking for a reaction, so if you don't respond she will eventually stop.We got a court order for contact times, so that we didn't need to negotiate pickup times, and that worked really well.

Her opinion of you doesn't matter, it really doesn't and the worst thing you can do it retaliate as you will be like her.I'm so pleased that I can look back and realise that the only shouty person was his ex.She now denies that her behaviour was ever like that so I guess she must feel mortified by the memory of her petty rants.DSD knows very differently.A good mantra is "I didn't cause it and I can't cure it"

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