This is a Premium feature
To use this feature subscribe to Mumsnet Premium - get first access to new features see fewer ads, and support Mumsnet.Start using Mumsnet Premium
I want to give up(22 Posts)
I don't know where to turn, so I came here.
At the moment, I feel so unhappy with my life situation. I'm a stepmum to an 8yo boy and have been for 5 years now. It started out rocky, then we made it to such a happy place through a lot of time and effort and everything clicked. Now we seem to have reverted and I resent my partner and his son so much. I resent the financial decisions that my partner makes when it comes to his kid. I always end up footing his monetary shortfalls because he has bought so many toys and sweets and am made to feel wrong for wanting to be paid back. Although not all issues with money stem from this. Partner now also gets his son almost every weekend, and plans for him to move in with us too. I didn't sign up for that, it was never part of our plan and if it had have been stated to me, I probably wouldn't still be in this relationship. All I do is go to work, come home to cook and clean, listen to my partner moaning and bit**ing at me for everything and listen to my stepson giving me cheek at the weekends when I just want to wind down.
I can't put into words the issues I am facing and have faced in the build up to this post because I'd be here all day. But all I know is that I don't want to be a stepmum, although I still love my partner (even though he makes me miserable at times) and i do love my stepson (though not unconditionally). I want to feel free and unrestricted. I've given this my all, and I want to give up. But to give up would mean that all of my hard work and sacrifice would mean nothing.
Please help. Is this a phase and things will get better?
Been there - it is so, so hard.
Been with my DH ten years now and he has two from a previous relationship.
In the earlier days his girls would act up, answer back, steal and it felt whatever I did would be thrown back in my face. I used to dread their visits.
It was when I took a step back and realised that it’s not the children’s fault - it was my DH’s “Disney parenting” that was causing the issues.
In my opinion it is your DP who needs to be spoken to and made to realise how you’re feeling. For us it was a phase and did get better.
Read a book called “Stepmonster” by Dr Wednesday Marten. I’m not normally into self help books but it helped me.
Also picture yourself in the future - can you see yourself happily settling down with this man and his child? If not then be kind to yourself and walk away. Easier said than done but his child will always be there.
I am so sorry to hear this OP. Yet another example of a DP parenting really poorly and not taking responsibility for either his child or his relationship.
You need to have it out with him. He needs your point of view spelling out loud and clear, and if he will not change then I'm afraid it's time to consider other options. He needs to know how serious you are.
Being unhappy in this kind of situation just isn't worth it - it won't improve with no action, it will only get worse.
Such a difficult situation. I agree with others - you need to speak to your DP.
The trouble is with some dad’s (my DH included at times), is they can bury their heads in the sand and just focus on the child and think that they don’t need to run things by DP/DW, their child is their priority, which of course it should be, but not to the point where it damages their relationship.
It’s demoralising when they make a decision without consulting you, spend money which they don’t have and then you’re left picking up the pieces.
What’s important to remember is he’s probably just doing what he thinks is best, he probably doesn’t realise that his behaviour is hurting you.
I think it comes down to communication, your DP needs to learn to treat you as a partner, somebody who he makes decisions together with, not just a girlfriend.
If he can’t change his ways, then personally I think I’d have to leave.
Read up on the sunken costs fallacy. You haven’t wasted these years that are behind you, you were doing what you felt was right at the time. You WOULD be wasting the years ahead of you by staying with someone who takes more from you than you’ll ever get back and who makes you unhappy. You’ll never meet anyone who is a better fit for you and the life you really want while you’re stuck with him.
5 years is enough. You deserve to be in a partnership, a relationship of equals, where 90% is wonderful not the crumbs that fall from the table when he’s done being “dad of the year” at your expense.
If after 5 years you feel as you do now, it is unlikely to get any better. It sounds like you still wish a life with your OH without his son, or as little impact oglf him in your life as possible. Sadly, he probably feels it, however much you dontvthiklnk you showcsmy of it, hence him becoming more difficult.
You say you didn't sign up to him being there more often or potentially full time but you did because this was a possibility from the start. It's hard to leave someone you love, but love alone is not enough, you need to want the same things and you don't.
Thank you for all of your support and advice. I have a lot to think about, although I am hoping that I can sort this in my head this weekend.
I know exactly how you feel as my partner has a son who stays with us every weekend. Hes generally a good kid but my partner allows him to jump on ybr furniture, stay up late and basically be his friend more than a parent. I wasnt brought up like that so I'm getting more angry about it every time he stays. Just recently hes been quite rude to me and I have mentioned this to my partner and h just says "oh yes just joking about!". Its so hard when you are not getting any back up and being a step parent is hard enough anyway as you are limited on what you can say. I have mentioned to my partner that if his son is going to stay with us alot I think he should have chores around the house, nothing drastic, just making his own bed and putting his things away to which he has agreed. I'm hoping this is a step in the right direction but only time can tell. I feel for you and believe me you're not on your own.
Honestly, just cut your losses. This isn't going to get better as he gets older. You're not even married to this man, you can just walk away. He needs to step up as a parent, anyhow, not expect his girlfriend to sub him in his indulgence.
You deserve so much more than this.
agree with everyone saying cut your losses, it wont get better honestly.
Your partner is expecting you to fund his and his childs lifestyle which isn't fair imo.
I also think him "planning to move him in" isn't on if you haven't even discussed it, he probably thinks he's doing the right thing for his child, but hasn't considered the actual reality of it. I can guarantee if he moves him in, you will be doing 90% of the parenting and all the work that comes with it within about 2 weeks. And your partner will be happy cos "his family are together" but he will be sat on his arse enjoying that whilst you make it work.
Get out now for your own sake
I'd end the relationship. You're not appreciated and get treated with no respect.
People treat you how you let them in life. Only you can change things.
If your OH allows his DS to disrespect you...he'll think that's acceptable behaviour and women are undeserving of respect.
All I do is go to work, come home to cook and clean, listen to my partner moaning and bit**ing at me for everything and listen to my stepson giving me cheek at the weekends when I just want to wind down.
Your 'partner' is a dickhead. For this reason alone you should end this relationship. He treats you like dirt, allows his son to do the same and expects you to fund his lifestyle.
Fuck the 'chats' and talks. Find another place to live and drop him.
The term 'Disney parenting' isn't something I've heard before but my god it makes sense. My DP is exactly the same (sometimes). He doesn't want to add more issues for the kids so they do get away with more. He still has such guilt from leaving that he won't always be firm but fair.
If sounds like your DP needs to buck his ideas up. He thinks he has a ready made package in you and that's not right.
Try speaking with him away from your SC and possibly away from the home (you often feel trapped). Go for a walk in the park and have an honest conversation with him. But you need to be direct with what you expect from him.
Relationships have there ups and downs and its disappointing seeing so many people telling you to just give up, it's no wonder there are so many families no longer together these days.
I can’t believe the number of people advising you to talk to your partner to see if he will change!
He totally disrespects you and is teaching his son to do the same. He is not a lovely person but you can leave now and meet someone lovely.
And if you leave you can be free if both of them. This isn’t a step parenting issue it’s a DP issue.
Done people have low standards for their DP - you don’t have to be one of them.
Just give up and call it a day. You've done your best. What's the betting that once dp realises he's on his own, suddenly the boy won't be moving in with him? He's relying on you to do all the hard work, OP.
The kid isn't your kid so you shouldn't be contributing financially to the point where currently, your partner is taking advantage. If you were willing to live with the kid going forwards then I would advise flat out telling your partner that it is ONE kid, not two (meaning him) and in future, if he wants to spoil the child, he does so from his own damn pocket. As it is though...you don't want to be part of this family in the same way that he expects of you. So I agree with the others, it's time to go. He is never going to give up time with his son for you and to be fair, you shouldn't expect him to. The kid has a mother, he'll be fine. Time to get out of there before you end up trapped in an even more restrictive situation.
If you were able to solve issues once, what happened that it reverted?
Is there any way you could consider counseling? It does help many couples if there's still desire on both sides to solve issues. Nobody knows your relationship better than you, so I would be careful about suggesting separation.
But if it's what you decide, you didn't waste efforts, that's how life is, nothing is guaranteed and for sure, you have learnt a lot about relationships and yourself and what you want.
I totally agree, Annasgirl, or suggest counselling for an unmarried relationship with a person who has FA respect for the OP and takes advantage of her continually. Some people will hang onto the shittiest excuse for a relationship just to still be in one.
When things got good, it was because I made a real effort to get it to that stage. I threw myself into loving and caring for my stepson, and eventually it became very natural. I was strict bit fair: he had to finish dinner or no sweets, he got to play video games but bed time was at a reasonable time and not into the late hours. Teaching him manners and respect, and that you don't get everything you want just because you ask for it. Spoilt on his birthday and Xmas but not bought toys left right and centre. My ss and I got really close.
But then my DP felt that I was being too strict, that I didnt want to give my ss nice things and that I didnt want him around because I was insisting on sticking to bed times, unless we were at an event or something. He was very vocal about it in front of my ss and it caused arguments. It got to the point that I had organised a day out for us and my ss had left his coat at school, so I went out and bought him a new one because i couldn't let him walk around in the cold. My partner said (in front of my ss) that he was surprised that I would even spend money on him. Since then, I backed off and my relationship with my ss went downhill. I dont know if that was down to me backing off or whether its to do with his age. But now I feel so resentful of everything.
It sounds like your partner is immature and sabotaging your relationship...