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Struggling with mum of my step daughters

(16 Posts)
ang87 Mon 21-Oct-19 16:20:42

We have my stepdaughters Tuesday to Sunday every other week, still pay full maintenance, and have our own clothes etc. My step daughters are 9 (nearly 10) and 6, they come in clothes to small, shoes I'll fitting either to big or to small, and it's more her attitude towards anything positive I try to help with, or attitude towards me. My partner works full time and during holidays I have them throughout the day and do school runs during term time. I have two sons of my own. And I'm just fed up of the mental battle that comes with seeing the ex. Would you advise me to speak to her about "issues" I've offered to have a sit down and coffee before with our partners to discuss the children and so the children know we are amicable. But it was turned down. And now I'm struggling to find anything decent about her. She offloads the girls constantly. They are always dirty not even a quick wash or teeth brushed and I'm fed up of feeling like the hard work of parenting is left to me. My partner helps but leaves for work at 7am and by the time he's travelling home it's 6pm. Anyone have any suggestions before i give up! I'm seriously at my wits end with it all

OP’s posts: |
DriftingLeaves Mon 21-Oct-19 16:24:56

I think you need to refuse to have them unless their dad is around.

You are being used by both of them.

GrumpyHoonMain Mon 21-Oct-19 16:26:35

All 3 girls are old enough to understand the importance of personal hygiene. In your position I would just try to press upon them the importance of washing / brushing teeth/ combing hair etc. The dirty clothes are a separate issue and in your position I would contact social services and go through court to try and get them to live with me permanently.

ChevalierTialys Mon 21-Oct-19 16:29:21

You are being used as free childcare

ColaFreezePop Mon 21-Oct-19 16:32:28

As he's your partner not your husband then you need to refuse to have the girls unless he's there. So tell him after this week you are not having them Tuesday to Sunday unless he's there.

Tell their schools you are not picking them up on Tuesday as you are not their parent and not to phone you about them as you don't have parental responsibility for them.

Whose house is it? If it's yours or joint? If either of those if he kicks off tell him to move out. If it's his then you need to take steps to move out. Until he parents his own children himself then you should not be with him.

Thornhill58 Mon 21-Oct-19 18:57:08

It's a shame for the kids but neither parent is looking after them. You are doing a wonderful job by being there for them but it isn't your job.
You are free child care and I'll first have a word with your partner about his hours or moving the visits to weekends only when he can be there.
Those girls don't come to see you but sounds like Mum doesn't care for them much. Poor little girls.

namina Mon 21-Oct-19 19:07:46

Agree with previous posters you are being used for free childcare 😩sounds like your doing a brilliant job though

SandyY2K Mon 21-Oct-19 19:33:46

Yes...you're being used. He would be unable to have his children those days without you.

Another woman being used as a free childcare provider.

His kids should be his responsibility...but they seem to be dumped on you.

Start saying no.

TQBD Mon 21-Oct-19 19:37:32

After nigh on 13 years in a similar position, you’ll never win.

ang87 Mon 21-Oct-19 22:12:44

I've never seen it as free childcare, I do accept it looks that way. But I just want to be a team.... but we all need to coparent

OP’s posts: |
TrainspottingWelsh Mon 21-Oct-19 22:20:37

He needs to be the one to speak to his ex. Personally I think you have the right to as you do the bulk of the care, but it's unlikely to go down well.

All you can do beyond that is encourage the girls to learn to do as much as possible for themselves when they're with their mum.

We used to send dsd home with a hidden toiletry bag. But there was zero chance her mum would have noticed during a bad spell, and she didn't mind during good spells. But it was very much dp and I that decided to do it, not just me acting alone.

ColaFreezePop Tue 22-Oct-19 04:27:21

It isn't your job to be the main carer of his children nor speak to his ex.

You cannot co-parent with her as you have no parental responsibility for them.

He needs to step up and deal with his children's issues with their mother by talking to her himself. Plus he needs to be the primary carer of them when they are with you both.

The point of their contact time with him is so they have a relationship with him not you. So you shouldn't be taking them to school or picking them up all the time - he needs to rearrange his hours so he is doing the bulk of it. If his ex forced him to go to court for child arrangements they order him if he doesn't do it then he can't see his daughters and order that you aren't allowed to do it at all.

Also if you left him tomorrow you would never see them again as you have no legal right to, and this is even if you have a child or children who are their half-siblings. I know step-patents and de facto step-parents who have been burnt over this.

There is a small step between supporting their relationship and doing the bulk of their care. Unfortunately you are doing the latter. You are being used and as a PP said you won't get any thanks for this.

IfYouWannaComeBack Tue 22-Oct-19 08:55:26

I just want to be a team.... but we all need to coparent
But their mum doesn’t want that, she just wants to be able to offload the kids onto you for free childcare whilst dismissing you and being rude. She’d treat a paid childminder better than she’s treating you.

Also, you say “coparenting”... are you boys yours or are they also your DP’s sons? How much coparenting does he do? Does he practically help a lot and do everything at the weekend to make up for the fact you look after his children all week?

This is exactly why I don’t have my SCs unless in an absolute emergency. I am not their parent and I won’t be taken advantage of. Maybe you should think about doing the same.

ang87 Tue 22-Oct-19 14:32:57

My partner is very much involved at the weekend when he's home, he's a very hands on parent. He does housework and does put in effort.
The youngest is my partners son. But my eldest is from a previous relationship. I encouraged my partner to have his daughters more as I was off on mat leave, and we wanted the girls to have more routine and better quality of life.
They attend school (unless sick) and aren't late, like with mum. They have clean uniforms, hair and teeth, we wanted them to feel involved in the half brothers life and not miss out or only see him on weekends, previously the care arrangement had been every weekend, Friday to Sunday. As bad as I sound we also wanted to be able to have child free weekends so we could plan dates or relaxing time together. As when we had the girls every weekend we felt like we never had any alone time. As our families work full time and don't really like asking family to babysit 4 children at once smile as they are 11,9,6 and 1 and half so a handful

OP’s posts: |
ang87 Tue 22-Oct-19 14:35:48

Thank you for all the advice, I think my partner and I need to sit down without the kids and talk about how I feel and what we think would help. I think me not having the girls is probably best, but I'd also like to make sure they have the best of both worlds and enjoy time with their parents, and have me as a last resort, as I feel like now maternity is over I'm ready to go back to work

OP’s posts: |
mankyfourthtoe Tue 22-Oct-19 14:42:46

When you go back to work could you have a Saturday with the girls and the. They go home Saturday tea for example. Then both families have a night out and a weekend day.

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