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I can't see any other option, I think I'm going to have to leave

(12 Posts)
Findingpeace Mon 11-Jul-16 19:29:05

I'm at the end of my tether. I don't know what to do.

My dsds are 18 and 21. The 21 year old moved out at 18/19. 18 year old dsd still lives with us. They've lived with us since they were 12 and 15. There DM was neglecting them and they are basically NC with her. The last 6 years have been so hard. I love them both and especially get on with the oldest but there have been so many challenges, especially around what their DM put them through and adapting to (very few) rules and boundaries. DH is a bit Disney and every evening he leaves me on my own with them to go teach a sport he loves and turned into a business. He has a day job. I know they were teenagers but it was exhausting!

I won't go on about this as I could write a diary.

Basically we've been struggling with dsd 18 who doesn't want to work and dropped out of college. Dsd 21 lives with her bf and his parents and she doesn't work and is on benefits. It would appear this arrangement is about to breakdown and the assumption by all (except me) is she'll come to live with us till she finds something. I love her, I really do, and I want good things for her but I can NOT live with her again! She goes through my belongings, she uses my toothbrush, she lays about the house doing nothing and eating everything. I can not live with two adults who don't work while DH and I work full time.

DH doesn't want the stress either but she doesn't have any friends to stay with and he completely dismisses my feelings and tells me we'll 'have to suck it up'. We offered her first months rent and deposit a couple of months ago but she hasn't bothered to look. I'm in bits about it. I never want to be someone who tells her DH his children can't come back to get on their feet but it won't be for a few days, housing benefit and job seekers allowance would have to be sorted out. She won't consider working. But I also need to think about what I can cope with and I just can't do it! I told him he'll have to stay home in the evenings and he went mad about having to shut down his business.

It's a no win situation and if it comes to pass I think I'll have to move to a hotel, either in the short term and move back later or look for something more permanent. I would never leave otherwise, I love my dh and he loves me and except for his children our relationship is great.

Do any of you wise step-mums have any advice because I can't see any other way? By the way, we're not wealthy and couldn't afford the hotel for any great length of time unfortunately.

MeridianB Mon 11-Jul-16 19:43:31

This sounds horrendous. You have my sympathy, OP.

How long does your DH plan to bankroll them? It sounds like it might be indefinitely.

Why on earth would he defend their refusal to look for work? I just don't get that.

Using your toothbrush? That's really bizarre and very unhealthy/unpleasant. I can see why you're thinking of leaving. What does your DH say when you talking about moving out?

Bananasinpyjamas1 Tue 12-Jul-16 01:02:51

Sympathies OP, so many difficulties seem to come from a 'Disney' parent - because then it does fall to the SP. So you should have a say.

My older DSD moved out aged 18 to live with her Mum after a big strop with me - just because I'd asked her to stop being so rude to me and my son. I, like you, wanted to have reasonable harmony in the house, so put up with a lot more than I would from my own kids, as they are DPs children.

Some months later DSD said she 'may' want to move back in. She'd completely ignored me since she moved out as a 'punishment'. It was then I realized that I just couldn't live with her anymore. I couldn't put my own sons through it either, my teenage son was visibly relieved when she left and I suddenly realise do that there is a limit, before a household just becomes too dominated and stressed by young adult kids and lax Dads who work and can escape it (we can't). My DSD changed her mind, but as I couldn't bring myself to ask DP not to take her back, I was planning to move out myself. Not to make a point, because I could not go through it again.

It sounds as if you have reached this point. You are basically trying to clear up your DSCs parents mess, that they have been unable to and shoved it onto you. You do not have to 'suck it up'. You've tried your best, your D.SC. Is an adult now and moved away. She will have to accept the reality that it is too much stress for you. However, like me, I was going move out and you may have to tell your DP too. Just say everything that you have said here. But be clear that you just cannot cope with this role anymore, it's like maximum responsibility with zero influence. flowers

Findingpeace Tue 12-Jul-16 07:21:26

bananas wow, that's exactly the position I'm in! Our situations sound so similar. I told DH that it's fine for him as he isn't around much and gets to escape the stress, he works during the day, is home for about 2 hours then leaves again until about 10pm. He gets very angry when I challenge him about this. I know it's because he knows I'm right but doesn't plan to change it and so deflects with anger. He told me I'm weak because I can't cope with it. I coped with it for 6 years! I'm not weak, I just want some peace in my house. Like your dsd, mine dominates the household with her chaotic personality.
But I love her, and I don't want to put my DH in this position so I'll have to leave.

meridianB my DH hates that they don't work as he feels that's not how they were brought up. I think they are a result of their mum abdicating all responsibility of them and their DF's permissive and often Disney parenting. We've stopped all money to dsd 18 except a roof over her head and food, electric etc. Oh and we're stuck in a phone contract for her till she's 19 in a couple of months.
Dsd 21 has no boundaries and she hates that there are boundaries at ours so will push through them and refuse to recognise them. I don't think she's trying to get at me by using my toothbrush but she knows her sister and DF wouldn't care but I do, so in an unconscious why she always chooses mine to use (when she's visiting and didn't bring her own, which she almost never does). If that makes sense. She'll go into my room and use my makeup and perfume even though I've asked her not to and explained my need for privacy. I say all of this isn't a personal attack at me only because we have a warm relationship and once she moved out she started telling me she loves me. She is a very complex and troubled young woman.

I know both DH and I are are in an impossible situation. He can't see her out on the street (although I doubt it would come to that) and I can't live with her again.

AtSea1979 Tue 12-Jul-16 07:36:03

Sounds like a really difficult situation. Rather than just let her moved back in and things go back to how they were, could you put a clear plan in, such as she can't move in until she's got a job, assuming she's got a few days until she's due to move and pulls out all the stops to find one in those days. Such as she doesn't touch your stuff, ever. She can join your evening family meal and maybe cereal in morning otherwise she has to provide her own food. So on. Try it and if it really is intolerable then look at moving out but don't jump ship until you've given it another try with more boundaries as your hotel bill will counter the benefits.

JapanNextYear Tue 12-Jul-16 07:40:06

I've been in a similar, though less stressful situation. But living with a grown up Dss who saw no need to get a job and did nothing all day while we worked full time.

I put my foot down after a year and said it was him or me and meant it. Fortunately he has a lovely mum to live with who happily cleans cooks and tidies up after him.

What I did was completely withdraw from any cooking, shopping, clearing up, laundry etc. If DH wanted to do it fine. Started to do things on my own, like went to exercise classes after work, or a walk or saw a friend. If I came home to find a mess I left it. Etc etc.

But...I have felt guilty as it has impacted on his relTionship with his dad, as he cant be arsed to come round and visit. I'm much happier but I'm not sure the total sum of happiness is better.

Anyway, suggest going out somewhere neutral with DH and properly talking to each other, even set a timer so each get their say. Think about what you see for the future and the future for you too. I imagine for you there's a point where you see just you and DH with DSC visiting. Explain this. But listen to him too.

Findingpeace Tue 12-Jul-16 18:26:27

I told DH I would think about going to a hotel if it comes to it and we argued as he refuses to consider me leaving but also refuses to understand how stressed out I get. I tried to express to him about how when the two dsds are together they take over the house and act defiantly. I could maybe cope with her living here for a while with firm rules in place but only if he's home in the evenings, which of course won't happen.

He plans to ring her today and tell her to start looking for shared accommodation and she'll need to make it work where she is at the moment until she can find something else as it won't work living here and will end up in arguments due to us not agreeing with her lifestyle. To be fair I think she knows this too and doesn't actually want to move back and have DH on her back about finding a job.

daftgeranium Tue 12-Jul-16 20:11:28

Unfortunately your problems are all due to the result of bad parenting by your DH and his ex. It sounds to me that you have been picking up the pieces for far too long, and he has been enabling their behaviour.
It might be ultimatum time I'm afraid - he needs to set some boundaries with his kids and make sure that you are treated with respect. They need to understand that unless they do this, they are not allowed to live with you. They carry some responsibility here too, they are adults behaving like 10 year olds.....

springtime1974 Wed 13-Jul-16 10:58:13

Op please read my post ... I am going through a similar situation . I have given the ultimatum so by the end of August I will know if my marriage is finished ... or if my husband has decided to wake up and get his 2 adult sons to get work or move out . Feel free to PM me ....

Wdigin2this Wed 13-Jul-16 23:42:13

I read so many similar stories on here. Of course she wants to move back in, it's an easy cheap, ride for her....why wouldn't she!
I think sitting down with your DH, pen and paper, and each of you agreeing a plan is the best way forward!
She cannot move in if she doesn't have a job, so she can pay you a fair rent, she pulls her full weight with general household chores, even to the point of cooking/preparing dinner if she's the first one home...obvs you'd have to be giving your DC age appropriate chores too, but....make the plan, agree the plan, explain the plan......and bloody well stick to the plan!

OutToGetYou Wed 13-Jul-16 23:50:14

I think I shall open a free hotel for step mums!


Findingpeace Thu 14-Jul-16 19:59:52

daft you're right that he enables their irresponsible behaviour. He'd rather have an easy life then push them. He never thought about how his lack of expectations of them would turn them into lazy adults with no expectations of themselves. And yes I have been picking up the pieces, which has left me tired and fed up.

Tonight DH and I went out for dinner and when we got back he gave dsd £10 to get a take away. What was he rewarding her for? Not doing a moment of work today? Hanging out at home all day in her pjs and not doing a single thing around the house? In his mind we went out to dinner without her and she's being pleasant to him today so what's the big deal in giving her £10.

springtime I read your post and we seem to have many of the same problems! How did your DH react when you gave him the altimatum?

Love the idea of a hotel for step-mum's OutToGetYou! It would be full every night!

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