Will I ever not feel this way?(87 Posts)
My OH has 3 children. 7,9 and 12 and without waffling on, we have been together 7 years and I only met them 4 years ago. This was difficult and I wanted so much to be apart of their lives.
Now 7 years on, OH and I have our own DD and the kids come and stay every other weekend.
My issue is that I do not enjoy them coming round at all, in fact I dread it. They are very good children but are very lively and want my OHs attention constantly.
I know some people will think I am a nasty cow and I really don't need to be told that. I do not like feeling this way.
I always put on an act when they are there because I wouldn't want them to know how I feel. They are only children and it is not their fault.
My OH have a great relationship and the only arguments we have are over his kids.
Are they any other step parents who have felt this way? Did it ever change? How did you get over it?
I'm a stepmum and it can be an absolute minefield. I'm sorry to say but I think that since it's only EOW then it's understandable they're very demanding of your OH time and attention, it's just something you're going to have to grit your teeth and put up with. You'll probably find as your own DD grows and is able to get involved with your DSC then things will be easier. We've managed to make a family of 5 kids, 2 are his DSDs who have only ever known him as dad, one is my DS and the youngest 2 we have together. When they're all here (DSDs live with their mum) it's noisy and chaotic but good fun. If you really can't cope with it then take yourself off to do other things when they're there, but I think it's just something you're going to have to work hard at getting used to.
You're going to have to fake it till you make it. You need to start with understanding that the will want every second of their weekend with him. The get just 4 days a month with their dad, that's not much time for him to split between 3 children.
How old is your dd? It might improve as she gets older and can interact with them more.
My DD is 6 months old. I think the problem also is he works very hard, which often means late finishes so we don't see that much of him during the week and the weekends we don't have them are lovely but all the stuff like food shopping, tip runs, all the boring stuff gets done then.
I am not saying he or they are doing anything wrong I am just concerned that I really don't like the weekends when they are here and I can't snap out of it. Maybe it is because my DD is only 6 months, I don't know.
The thought of them being here anymore makes me actually want to cry, which is awful.
It doesn't help that our home is pretty open plan, so no getting peace anywhere. If I go out OH says it is because I don't want to be around the kids (which is true)
6 months is still early days to adjust to a new baby. What would you like to happen?
Could you maybe spin it more like: you're going out for a while so he can have time just with the kids and no distractions? That way you're helping the kids have a closer relationship with their dad, and you're getting some peace and quiet at the same time.
Look at the positives. When your DD is older they'll be able to help, be big brothers and sisters for her, fuss her..... how is their relationship now?
If they are decent kids and simply want their dads attention then I think it's completely understandable that they make the most of the time they have with him.
If you get together with someone with kids, it shouldn't be a surprise that the kids will want to spend time with them. I think fake it til you make it is good advice.
How was it before the baby?
I would like to enjoy them being there and not feel dread when they are.
In no way or form do I want them not to see their dad.
He does often take them out for the day, but of course sometimes they want to stay in and it is costly taking 3 kids out if they are not going for a walk.
It doesn't help that I do not have a car at the moment so can't go far myself. But will be getting one in a month or so hopefully.
To be honest it's the youngest one I find the hardest as she does things that annoy me. I try to be tolerant and never ever show how I feel but being very open and honest here I find her annoying and too hectic. I hate how I feel.
Yes, has this not wanting them to be around only started since your own baby was born?
So the younger one is the issue?
Is she given boundaries? House rules about noise etc? Does dad step up when she gets too silly?
To be totally honest, and in the kindest way possible, you need to get a grip! My 7 year old drives me bonkers too, it's what small kids do, and you need to suck it up. One day your daughter will be 7 too.
Complaining about it being costly to go out with three kids is unfortunate, but they are his kids and therefore his financial responsibility. Budgeting some cash to do occasional activities with them, given they are with you only a few days each month, hardly seems too much to ask. Think how you would feel if this was your DD someone else was talking about!
You somehow need to accept they will be the priority on the times they are with you however much you dislike it, seems to me to be your only option. Working hard and the tasks of every day life is part of all families.
Even if they were your own kids you'd be irritated by them sometimes when you're tired from the demands if a baby. Let's face it, babies are all work and not a great deal of fun at 6months. You'll never love your SC as you love your own DD but as a pp said, fake it till you make it.
Tell your OH how tired you are and suggest he has all four of his DC one day at the weekend while you go out on your own for the day. You deserve a break and he deserves to find out how hard it is!
The trouble is OH is very sensitive about his kids. I asked him if he could tell youngest not to climb all over my settee arms and backs and it got his back up.,he does tell her sometimes but often I have to give him a look first and then he doesn't like that. I do not feel comfortable telling them off.
Also the middle one always is trying to grab my DD off the oldest (oldest is great by the way) and I have told her she is not a dolly and not to do that but she still does it.
To be honest it was fine before I had DD. I didn't use to hate it. It was hard but I didn't hate it.
Sometimes they leave their bedroom in a state, which gets to me. I have spoken to OH and sometimes he tells them to tidy it, other times i doubt he has because it is a tip.
I really feel for you op, you'll rarely get any support on here for step dc issues!
If they're only at yours for a few days a month I think it's a case of grin and bare it.
Being a stepmum is bloody hard and frustrating, would love to have that natural relationship with mine but sadly it doesn't happen
I don't mind what OH spends his cash on but like anyone we can't afford to take them out everytime! Trust me they get a great deal and go lots of lovely places but at times it is a case of they stay at home and make the most of the stuff they have here (scooters/pets etc)
And I know I need to get a grip. I am trying.
I think you need to stop doing all the burning stuff when you don't have them. They need to see the dad doing normal stuff, which doesn't cost money. They can go along to the top with him. You could send them out to get the groceries together. He can be spending time with them while doing these chores.
You have my sympathy OP, I sometimes feel the same way. I have 4 DSC.
We also have a temporary space issue so I don't have anywhere to escape too for 5 mins peace.
DP and I have a 2 yr old together as well
clearly we're mental, 5 kids! and when it gets too much I chuck him in the pram and go for a walk.
I feel guilty for feeling that way but I never outwardly show it. It's hard work, step mums get a lot of stick on here but you aren't alone, honestly
Thanks Dalmatianmad. Sometimes I feel like the biggest bitch on this earth and that there is something wrong with me. OH wants me to be excited they are here and I just am not.
I tell my own DC off for climbing over the couch, I'd have no hesitation telling off other DC also. You are allowed to do it! I explain they are expensive to replace and not built for climbing and jumping on.
Totally with you Royal and nanny
I told him the same that they can entertain themselves sometimes too. Plus I don't get as much help from him with my DD when they are here either.
If I go up to our bedroom for 5 minutes peace he always throws that back at me too. I very often go out for a walk, luckily I love somewhere with lovely walks!
One of them broke one of my picture frames last weekend too (a special one bought years ago by a friend)
OH didn't really tell her off (she was running around being hectic) and said to me 'it's only from matalan' that wasn't the point, it was a special present.
I get it is unpopular and understand why certain attitudes persist but... I have 2 DSCs now in 20s and have been in my life since 7and 4.
I love them, respect them,like them and feel lucky to have them in our life.
We had 3 DCs ourselves and had the older 2 EVERY weekend and a mid week night. They always came on any holiday we managed (sometimes without my DH,and somehow came every Christmas and often birthdays. We were space and cash constrained but I was the OW so we sucked it up guiltily.
I felt marginalised, second class, heartbroken at the compromised life my own kids got, guilty, unappreciated, but never by them. They were and are amazing.
Things I would change - don't treat it like a competition, be clear in your expectations for your joint kids, encourage and be grateful for the bond the kids share ( kids are so lucky to be surrounded in this close family love), do things yourself if you want without any scoring. Accept that it hard work but if you relax it will be easier for everyone. One of my kids is the hardest work of all and I am grateful they have never been anyone's step child - she would be a tough one! And yes - don't be too much of an armchair parent - you have no idea what your DD will be like at 7.
I really think either their dad steps up with the discipline or you just get on with it. I think it's madness that they're breaking your things and disrespecting your home and nobody says anything to them. I know kids will be kids but still, there needs to be a cut off somewhere when some behaviour becomes unacceptable.
If my DS was misbehaving in somebody house and I wasn't there, I would be happy for him to be told off accordingly.
If my DSC are being a pain and naughty and I'm the only one there, my DP is happy for me to step in and say something to them.
It's difficult I know but you really need to have a chat with your partner and both get on the same page
To be honest I'd tell my own kids off for what you've described and I'd tell my DSDs off for it too.
What is an 'arm chair ' parent?
I get I will not know what my DD will be like when she is 7, but the difference is I will tell her not to climb on the sofa myself and I will deal with that. With step children I am not doing the telling off.
I am sure if they lived with us all the time OH would treat it differently.
I agree that more agreement on the discipline needs to happen.
My least favourite is the fighting over my DD. Squabbling when they are helping me put her nappy on for example. I step back and let them do it and then one of them is snatching and pushing the other out of the way. Annoys the hell out of me and often on this occasion I do say something.
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