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Step mum messes with my head(8 Posts)
Ok so this will probably be long and I apologise but if you get to the end thank you for reading. I'm not even sure this is the the right place to post.
For context I'm now 39 and shes 70
Ok here goes...my parents split up when I was 4 and my brother was 2, my dad had an affair and left. Obviously this was hard time for all involved but being such young kids we adapted and life when on. They married, we were not invited and as an adult I understand why they didn't want to look after us on their wedding day and i get it, i really do but it still hurts that we weren't there. We saw them eow then it reduced to once a month for the Saturday and most of the time we had fun there, there were obviously times that were hard as well some stuff caused resentment. I fell out of contact with my dad at about 14yrs old for about 10yrs for various reasons, then contacted them 15yrs ago and we aired a few things out and the relationship has be good. My children adore them and they them. I'm just having a hard time with my stepmother she can be so spiteful and nasty, I listen to her speak about other people and even her own son with such venom, I try to let it slide over my head but it sticks and i often wonder what she says about me. I did love her as a child I'd wanna sit next to her, hold her hand just spend time with her but she always bad mouthed my mum and it chipped away at the love I had for her and now I just put up with her as my dads wife. She says things to me like it was such a hard job taking on you and your brother I never had time to myself, which I do understand taking on someone else's children must be extremely hard but once every month can't have been too bad and surely if your having a relationship with a man that has small children you take it on knowing what would be? Then in the next breath she says to my you were just like the daughter I never had! She completely messes with my head. She still bad mouths my mum and I just don't understand why, my mum has never said anything bad about them to us and in my mind she would of had every right too but never not one bad word. I dont know how to handle her at all, I just called her to her to say thank you for the kids Christmas money and during the 30min conversation she started saying hurtful things about my mum and I broke down in tears and and told her she was out of order talking about my mum like that and told her I wasn't willing to continue talking to her at the mo and would ring her over the weekend when she pipes in oh no are you ok love so i put the phone down. I know if I don't talk her anymore my relationship with my dad would be over he's not in the best health and i know i should be fine with that if that's the way he wants to be but I'm just not, he's my dad. I just don't know how to handle her. Why does she continue to bad mouth my mum to me? Does anyone have any ideas on how to deal with her?Tbh I really don't want to talk to her anymore. I'm a hot head and have managed to hold my temper with her but i know one more thing from her will make me explode and then she would be able to say it was my fault for shouting at her. Please help it messes me up so much she was once a woman I thought loved me and my brother, I hate admitting she hurts me but she really does. Thank you for reading
Sorry she's 80 not 70!
I agree with most of your post and think you would not be wrong for wanting to disengage from her. You should absolutely have been at the wedding, that was shit on your dad as much as her. Why didn't he stand up and ensure you were there?
I disagree about the 'She knew what she was getting herself into' narrative, in the same way you wouldn't say that to a mother who's child doesn't sleep through the night. You never really know what to expect or what you're getting into.
Her saying hurtful things about your mum is horrible, it would be understandable for you to cut her off just for that. You say your DC's adore them, does that include your stepmum?
I'm sorry she's made things difficult for you. Step parenting is a bloody tough role without ones like her giving us a bad name
She is just a spiteful selfish woman as you pointed out she slags of her own son as well as your mother.
You need to protect yourself emotionally by keeping contact to to a minimum. If she then tries to hurt your children you need to ensure they aren't alone in her company.
Your post brought back memories. I am fortunate that my parents rarely spoke badly about each other, not my SM, but when they did (frustration over late maintenance, comments about my mum neglecting me), I remember how massively hurt I felt. It was worse than if they'd say something bad about me.
I think parents/SP often forget that most children adore their mum and dad just as much as kids from non-separated families do, and it breaks their heart to hear someone they love or respect badmouthing the other. It is hard to let yourself love someone who has hatred for the other person you love most in the world.
It is also easy to assume that you are keeping your feelings away from your kids. Kids hear conversations you might have when you think they are out of sight. Kids will pick up on intonation in your voice, will work out the meanings behind things that are said.
I think some SPs some times wonder why their SKs don't like them when they have done everything to welcome them in their life, and I think that the above is often the reason.
OP, in your case, you need to accept that this is just the way your SM is with age, it has just got worse. You are not going to change her, so all you can do is take the best of her, ie. how she treats your kids, and ignore her spite. It sounds like she is like this with everyone, so it has nothing to do with you being her SD. It sounds like she loves you in her own way.
Thank you both for your replies. Chongadong my dad always takes the path of least resistance for a quiet life and I have a lot of issues with him and the wedding was always one that hurt the most but I knew when I got back in contact with him if I wanted any kind of relationship with him I needed to start a fresh. Both kids love both of them and stepmum goes on and on about having grandkids and how much she loves them and I don't want my DC to get hurt. I have dsc and I know how hard being a step parent is, i knew when i started dating my partner he had children and they absolutely would be part of our lives i thought very carefully before making the relationship with their dad a serious one and yes it has been difficult but I would never do to them what she has done to us @colafreezepop I have never and will never leave my kids with her alone I couldn't risk her spite and venom slipping out and upsetting them so they only ever see the nice side of her. Thank you again for your kind replies I think I'm going to keep contact to the very minimum you are both right I need to protect myself as much as I can.
OP. There’s a few things that stand out to me about your post.
There are things from years ago that you have still not resolved. I understand, we can all have those ‘ouch’ moments. Have you ever been to counselling to work through these things and get them out? Because the truth is it’s much healthier to do so and be able to let things like this go and put them behind you. It sounds like the pain of the wedding day that happened some 30 years ago is still very triggering for you, which is causing you continual pain.
There are some people in life we don’t choose. And who are emotionally unhealthy/ toxic. It’s clear that despite this woman’s actions, you still let her in and are seeking love and affection from her. It’s very clear to me that she’s not capable of that.
In your situation (and ive been in your shoes with a member of my immediate family) you need to protect yourself. And what that looks like is very personal to you.
For me, I went into counselling to address my emotional pain. Been going on and off for two years. I also made the difficult decision to go no contact (not ideal and I don’t recommend it unless it’s a last resort) but for me, that person was too triggering and I was too fragile.
I am planning to get to a place where my own emotional wounds are healed and then resume contact (albeit very superficial) and continue with my life. At the age of 80, this woman is not going to change. So let that go. Why she is mean about your mother? Who knows, that’s her unresolved pain.
But in your shoes, id get into counselling and try and get this stuff out. For your own sake x
Dontdisturbmenow your post bought tears to my eyes, that's exactly how I felt/feel, my mum is one of the people I love most in the world don't bash her!
Sassbott I'm sorry you have had a toxic person in your life too it's such a shit feeling. I'm glad you have been helped with counselling and your getting to a better place. I have never even considered counselling tbh I thought it was something I had gotten over but I obviously haven't, it is something I will look into after Christmas, thank you for suggesting it. Your right I really don't think she's capable of love either, she treats her youngest son appallingly and often complains to me about my dad in fact she never has anything nice to say about anybody. I have decided to go as low contact as I can with her, if she calls for a chat i will be on the way out or busy with the DC I've had enough of feeling shitty.