DP- could have put money on this happening(30 Posts)
So a while back my dp had a proper ding song with his ex and as always 'she's not their mum' came up. Me and dp have talk at length about this and each time his response is - don't speak to kids be polite and just do your own thing- so I do - I don't watch the kids . Pretty much stop doing so much. I have point blank refused to do pick ups unless it suits me. After ex having g her rants about me she then says 'could always not just pick kids up/ drop kids off'
I'm not being funny but one minute I'm not good enough to look after her kids but when she needs me to do stuff she calls me childish and immature for refusing .(and yes I am fully aware its slightly immature)
but every time after a few weeks dp forgets our chat. And now here I am watching dsd while he and dss take the dog out.
its not that I dont like the kids. Its just that I feel I'm being taken for granted. He never asked me to watch dsd and just assumed I would. It pisses me off. I'm not a bloody live in babysitter.
I'm just ranting but I'm pissed off.
Similar story here so you have my sympathy.
No no no. If you're not their stepmum (in the stepchildrens parents eyes) then you have the right to refuse to he a babysitter when they see fit.
Why is he even engaging with her to this level? Why can he not pick up/drop off his own kids?? Can you not make yourself unavailable when kids are there?
We have the kids 50/50 so it's hard to not be here. My work is right next to where kids live (well 5 minute drive) so I really do feel petty for not doing the pick ups etc but I do it as a matter of principle more than anything.
What would he do if you weren't around to do pick ups? You're not supposed to talk to them but you can run around after them making his and the exs life easier? What do you actually get out of this arrangement other than drama stress and disrespect from all angles?
I couldn't live like that. The children wouldn't be the problem; it's their parents I couldn't cope with.
It really is starting to drain me. I don't know if I'm coming or going. Now dp doesn't understand why im in a bit of a huff and I know if I say anything I'll be the bad one.
I just want to quietly sulk in my room.
I wouldn't say it's asking a lot to sit with one child while your partner walks the dog though? It's not really asking much at all is it. I'd be more than happy to sit with friends or neighbours kids if they occupied with something in my house and their parent wanted to pop out for a quick dog walk
That's not the point tho. I'm quiet happy to do it- but when it's constantly thrown back on your face how your not their mum and the kids are not my responsibility and that dsd once said she doesn't like me then why the hell should I watch the kids?
I agree with you always. In your situation, everyone likes to pick and choose when you are a convenience to them, and the rest of the time they like to be assertive about you "knowing your place". Well I'd be feeling exactly like you, and I would also be refusing to pick the kids up even if I was 5 minutes around the corner. And I would also not want to look after them while their dad nips out.
In the meantime get a contract written.
Stating what you will/won't do based on you not allowed to talk to them. Not their mum etc.
Conversation arises again about not talking etc, get him to sign it. Tell him you think this is the easiest way because you are sick of the same conversation every couple of weeks. Basically when something goes wrong. easiest way is a contract..
He will probably sign it in a huff.
But then he will forget about the conversation again but this time you have evidence.
Or just start recording all discussions.
But me I would actually be looking at what I was getting out of the relationship. It's ok to be selfish. Regardless of what you do someone will be unhappy. So do what would make you happy.
Surely its quite hard looking after children if you aren't meant to be talking to them
Exactly!! Honestly the goal posts change all the time. So if I don't know of I'm coming or going then the poor Kids must be pulled in all directions. Makes me sad.
The contract thing might be a good idea. It's just crap. I hate feeling out of control. It's just petty but it's so annoying.
Thanks for your input/advice and acknowledgement that I'm not a total Mardy cow. Xx
Isn't your dsd around 12? If so maybe he doesn't view it as you minding her rather her just staying in the house with out him.
To be honest if your at the stage your pissed of he left her in the house with out him, were you don't actually need to actively engage with her yes I think you need to do something. I'm sure it is draining on you both.
If you have 50/50 and your clearly so unhappy in both your role as a sm and your view that your dp is very lacking in support of you have you considered separation?
Yup, major falling out here over same issue, dp not speaking to me. He also managed to conveniently forget we agreed I wouldn't have dss on my own, and that he is away til Sat (he put Fri on the calendar), never asked me what I was doing so I asked what dss is doing Fri and dp says "don't know" so I assume he must have arranged for him to stay with his DM, then next day DM phones me (she's never phoned my mobile before and I have not given her my number) and asks me to ensure I do something Friday. I'm not getting into a conversation with her about it so text dp and ask him to remind her I don't have dss Fri and dp gets in a strop.
I then get an email from dp telling me how awful I am, how I am lazy, never do anything, he does all the housework, all I do is nag and criticise.....and he thought I looked after dss when I had nothing else to do (sigh), which he says only means sorting out food for him (he's obviously also forgotten the stealing, rudeness, refusal to do anything), in the same way he feeds the cat when I am not there (cat feeding being equal to teenage boy sitting?). He says he's really annoyed with me.
I've not responded to the email but am pretty upset by it.
The kids are 50:50 - he needs to start managing his time and maybe you need to stop believing everything he says about her rants. "she is not their Mum" rant may well be that EX should be doing some aspects of the child care that he is not.
As much as I hate it, what goes on in my EXs house is his business and no I do not like his new DP and I do not trust her with my DCs. ( with justifiable reasons and evidence) But would I expect my new DP to ask me to look after his DD when she is here because he has gone to walk the dog - then no. that is part of family life. Do I expect my EX to take all 3 DCs to go down the road to pick up a takeaway rather than leave the DCs with her - then as much as I would rather she was not in charge of my DCS - then no it is unreasonable.
I do not get this disengaging/ not talking with the step children attitude. My DCs are ignored out of spite by Exs DP - nothing to do with anything else, not me making a fuss, not anything. They know they are being ignored and they hate it. They do not understand why an adult can be so rude ( quote my 8yr old) She does not have to like us, just be polite = say hello.
It seems to me, that this has come down to really petty issues that should have been resolved ages ago. You resent your step kids and want nothing to do with them yet they live with you 50% of the time.
The adults need to grow up and start parenting the children appropraitely in their own homes and whether you like it or not on a 50/50 arrangement that is going to involve you speaking to them and doing things that are part of family life.
I don't recall saying I resent the kids. I most definitely do not. I actually quite like them. And fwiw I don't ignore the kids as I think that's just daft.
I agree that dp should be able to go out and leave kids without asking but my point is we agreed that wouldn't happen and here it is happening. It's nothing to do with the kids themselves. Its been made perfectly clear that I have to have no responsibility for the children. So thafs fine I won't but dp seems to have forgotten which is the reason I was annoyed.
always - I think it is a question of how long you are with your DP. If it is more than a few months - and getting in to years - ie are a long term partner - then there is no way that you can be just on the 'sidelines'. You probably feel an outsider anyway and this won't help.
The ex cannot expect you to be either. Sounds like they are both being a bit immature - saying you can't have any role to the point of not speaking to them? I bet the kids think its a bit weird. Maybe you can have a long think about what would work from your POV - that works for you and DSCs - somewhere inbetween a parent and an aunt perhaps?! - then tell your DP to support you in that role.
melon - that sounds pretty crap of your DP - he can't have it both ways and can't put the blame on you either!
Oh, and something I feel strongly about! Just because the DSCs are over a certain age that does not mean that either parent can IGNORE the step parent and just make decisions by themselves.
I do think its normal for a parent to go out and leave one for an hour or so - I would never have a problem with this - but the step parent is not invisible and there are always 'family dynamics' going on.
And even if no actual 'minding' needs to happen - there is still a dependent there - who may be doing whatever/music loud/boyfriend trouble/feeling awkward around step or whatever. It's a bug bear of mine because I've been given teenagers for sometimes days without discussion because either their Mum or Dad were of the relaxed 'they just look after themselves'... (No! Fainting/lying/boyfriends/injuring themselves... I could go on... !!
I've never been in a step-parent situation but I never left my dd with anyone I didn't trust to look after her and reprimand her if necessary. I don't think it would have been fair to either my dd or the person doing the favour.
Your DP has put you in an impossible situation, OP. Is he worth it?
The whole thing sounds grim. Wouldn't you be better on your own?
If I wasn't trusted to discipline my DSD by both of her parents, I would refuse to be left in sole charge of her, ever. That is all.
You need to make that stance clear to your DP and his ex.
It does sound grim. Step parenting is a pretty thankless task, but there has to be done upsides. I'm struggling to see them for anyone in this situation.
Time to reconsider? From personal experience it doesn't get any easier as they get older, and I like my step kids and get on ok with their mum.
Join the discussion
Please login first.