AIBU - Ex wants to bring his new GF to school evenings.

(162 Posts)
Goldilocks3Bears Mon 02-Oct-17 10:02:41

Ex and I split up 18 mos ago and are now divorced after a lot of aggro. Our parenting relationship has survived by a mere whisker and we've managed to largely protect the children from 'adult issues', like his affair. She is lovely to the kids, for which I am grateful, but he seems desperate to "up her position", starting to refer to her as 'stepmum' etc. after only 9 months (they are not married, only been living together for a year and she retained her old flat until recently).

This week we have senior school visits and he wants to bring her as "she has invested a lot of time and effort in the children". He and her have them every second weekend and half of the holidays....

I've already said I don't think she has a place there, it's super awks and we should be able to do these things as parents without others. I wouldn't dream of bringing a new BF along to these things, even if me and the kids were living with another man.

I've asked him this twice now and he just emailed to insist she will be there. I feel like he's trying to make a point and this is overshadowing the true reason we are there and focus on our child's future school.



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MagicFajita Mon 02-Oct-17 10:05:53

I think you have to agree on something together op. If it's not okay for you then the answer is no ,but this also means that you mustn't bring a partner to a parents' evening.

IfyouseeRitaMoreno Mon 02-Oct-17 10:07:26

Definitely not the place. Can you arrange a second sitting with the teachers?

BubblesPip Mon 02-Oct-17 10:08:59

School evenings are certainly not the place for step parents!

Somerville Mon 02-Oct-17 10:11:09

Are these visits to decide which schools you'll be applying to for your child? Can't see what someone without PR would be doing there, since they don't get a say.
But... not sure you have a way to stop her, unfortunately. Hopefully she'll got bored very soon - they're not the most scintillating of occasions.
If it helps, the fact that she's trying to muscle in shows insecurity on her part.

Somerville Mon 02-Oct-17 10:13:19

Oh, and try to choose a senior school where they're strict about enforcing things like 'only two tickets per family to school plays' and 'only parents or legal guardians at parents' evening'. wink

Orangebird69 Mon 02-Oct-17 10:13:30

That's not on - and I say that from an ex step parent point of view, whose stepchildren lived with me for half the time... school plays, football games, parties etc are ok, but no, not official school stuff like that.


TheFaerieQueene Mon 02-Oct-17 10:16:22

So the time she has spent with your DC can be measured in weeks, but he wants her involved in school meetings etc. Fuck that.

Penhacked Mon 02-Oct-17 10:23:34

The answer is a calm and polite no. You appreciate her involvement with the children, but as she does not have the parental responsibility and is not a legal guardian, no. Flatter him and say you have complete faith the two of you can handle this together and he is more than able to involve her with things when he gets back. And that she is welcome to school plays, matches etc. The more the merrier there.

Bibidy Mon 02-Oct-17 10:29:32

Can you get separate appointments with the school? So you go alone and then he goes with the gf at another time?

I agree that she doesn't need to be there but if it's going to cause a load of aggro to try and force him not to bring her, it's not really worth it.

Mari50 Mon 02-Oct-17 10:31:49

A friend of mine is in a similar situation with her ex. Does his partner have children of her own? It often seems to be step-parents who are childless over step the mark because they have no empathy or understanding of the situation. For them it's more about cementing their position as a partner. I would never have dreamed of interfering in my exP's child's education, massive overstepping of boundaries imo.
That said, unless your partner agrees with you he'll bring her along.
This happened to my friend and the step mum sat there like a lemon with nothing to add to the conversation and the teacher not taking her presence seriously- so take heart there.

swingofthings Mon 02-Oct-17 10:34:20

It's a very selfish thing to to please him and her rather than considering what is best for the child.

However you can't control what he does. If it's a visit go on your own and of she's there with him keep your head up they are the one who will looked down on not you.

If it's a parents evening explain the situation to the teacher and ask to have separate meetings.

This was my worse nightmare but instead ex decided not to bother himself. He has never been to a parent evening (separated before DD started school).

Goldilocks3Bears Mon 02-Oct-17 10:52:33

It's open evening not parents evening. He's making out ds invited her (he didn't).

She's 32 (he's late 40s) no kids herself.

I try to keep things amicable in front of kids, like when she picks them up for the weekend if he's working. She sent me a text the first time thanking me for being so nice to her. I explained this was not about her.

Him and I are done - there is zero teason for her to feel insecure. I think this is him tbh as he's been public about their amazing love since we split, fb selfies, her volunteering at kids events, that sort of stuff...

Money seems to be his trigger and I was expecting him to lash out now the divorce is done. And he is sad

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Goldilocks3Bears Mon 02-Oct-17 10:59:01

@penhacked that's the route I've taken - trying to be the bigger person but to no avail.

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allinclusive Mon 02-Oct-17 11:04:01

I would arrange to go at another time, with the children, and stand them both up.

Magda72 Mon 02-Oct-17 11:06:02

Hi Goldie - you are dead right - not appropriate at all!
If you & she have a civil relationship maybe speak to her & explain why you feel & want it to be parents only. It doesn't matter how good she's being to the kids it's only been a few months & this is parental business.
My ex did v similar & I always stood my ground - caused a lot of rows between us but I held firm as it was never about the kids but always about making him look good & promoting his perfect relationship.
As a SM now I would no more dream of going to anything official & would only go to plays etc. if sc asked me to.

Binghasalottoanswerfor Mon 02-Oct-17 11:20:01

I would rearrange a separate meeting with the school and cancel the arranged meeting for you all. Then just you attend the prearranged meeting. Besides, I doubt the school will allow her there???

LaurieFairyCake Mon 02-Oct-17 12:13:57

You can’t stop him so ignore it

Do that for everything you can’t prevent flowers

If he’s on a wind up you ignoring it will bother him more grin

Busymum5 Mon 02-Oct-17 12:39:32

Hey - it is a difficult situation. Being a mum and step mum I can see it from both ways.

I love my SC but I don't go to their open day/parent evenings as a rule. This is for a few reasons
One; Because their mum is crazy
Two: I do believe that it is the parents place to go.

Normally my OH goes by himself as she will normally say she will go but at the last minute will text to say she can't - too busy or working. This upsets my SC's as would like them both there.
I have only been once and that was because she begged me too. It did not go down well with her mum but as my DSD point out to her she had already said that she did not want to go (the reason she wanted as many people to go as possible was because it was her first year at high school and her report was glowing - I mean every teacher loved her!!).

On the other hand I have a good co parent relationship with my ex. We normally go together for these things. The ex wife has never been due to location and childcare issues. If My ex can not attend for any reason then he is more than happy for my OH to go with me.

So I guess you have to go on what your gut is telling you. If you feel that it is best for this to be a "parent only" school thing then say it.
If you think that other school activists, such as school plays, sports advent can be attended by all then do it - this is normally better place for you all to meet as the attention is placed elsewhere.

I hope this helps.

Wishingandwaiting Mon 02-Oct-17 12:44:44

Weird, odd, inconsiderate of your Ex.

However very little you can do about it. Suck it up, be the bigger person and i suspect after just one visit, she feels embarrassed and doesn’t turn up to anymore.

Piratesandpants Mon 02-Oct-17 12:48:11

As a general point, lease don't go down the route of organising 2 separate appointments at school. Its a waste of teachers' time and energy which could be better spent on other things. I understand, sounds like s wanker, but it's not the school's problem.

Bibidy Mon 02-Oct-17 12:51:27

As it's an open evening and not a parents evening then I think that changes things.

Anybody can attend an open evening, does it really matter if she's there as well?? There's no reason you need to go along with them, you could just go separately and you won't even have to see them.

TheRealBiscuitAddict Mon 02-Oct-17 12:51:27

I'm assuming that this is an open evening to look round secondary schools to make a choice when submitting applications? In which case although i agree that it's not appropriate for her to go I wouldn't give it too much head space because on the whole you wander round, speak to some kids, speak to some teachers and once you've seen five or six of them you and your child decide jointly which ones they'd like to go to.

She won't have any say in the process and won't be in a position to be communicating with teachers etc.

Neither mine or my ex's partners went to these types of events and it wouldn't even have occurred to me that they should. However I do know that my ex will be going to the open evenings for his partner's children but then he's quite a pragmatic person who would give practical advice re choosing which school etc, and her children's father isn't in the picture so perhaps they see it differently..

But re things like school plays etc, assuming that there are multiple tickets available you just have to grin and bear it. And if the kids ultimately get on with her they may want her at school plays. Parents evenings on the other hand she has no need to go to.

Goldilocks3Bears Mon 02-Oct-17 14:24:52

She gets to be involved in plenty of events at school like plays etc snd with the nature of his work she effectively has the children for periods of time on her own.
But as previous posters have noted, this is not a jolly night out, it's big parenting stuff and our ds, him and I should be able to go as a team so he feels supported. She has no vote.
I've asked him nicely twice now and he's insisting on taking her. I've lost all respect for him.

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Bibidy Mon 02-Oct-17 14:31:31

But as previous posters have noted, this is not a jolly night out, it's big parenting stuff and our ds, him and I should be able to go as a team so he feels supported. She has no vote.

I appreciate you would prefer her not to be there, but from previous posts she sounds like she's polite and friendly to you, she even thanked you for being nice to her the first time you met (and you responded to tell her 'it wasn't about her'? Why did you do that when she was being kind?), is it really that bad for her to be there too? It doesn't mean she gets a vote.

I am an SM myself and I wouldn't want to attend anything like this, but if for whatever reason your ex wants her to and you know she genuinely cares about DS, could you not just grit your teeth and get through it? For DS's sake?

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