Partner's son talks about his mum all the time

(105 Posts)
KathrynG1988 Mon 20-Apr-20 10:29:16

Hi I was hoping for some advice.

I've been with my partner for two years now, has a son who is 12. My partner and I live together and have done for about a year.

The last few weeks when his son comes over, he'll talk to me a lot about what his mum likes, what she does, what she cooks and bakes, what activities they do together etc. Sometimes my partner will ask questions of his son about his mum around me too.

My partner's ex is also still involved with his family heavily and my partner does her food shopping at the moment when we go to get ours to be helpful.

I've spoken to my partner and said I understand his son loves his mum and she's a great mum, but I'm finding it hard to hear him talk about her so often as I feel compared and judged. I can be making something and he'll tell me his mum does it a different way, or she makes her own bread etc. Im all for fostering positive relationships with the ex, but I don't want to hear about her as often as I am. Ive asked that he try to not engage as fully in the chats and that he not bring her up himself. He said he understood and that was fine.

But then at dinner last night my partner asked a couple of questions about his ex again. That caused a conversation about what she does. After I'd already had a day of his son telling me that his mum does xyz, when I'm doing something with him.

I tried to talk to my partner and he's reacted badly and said I shouldn't be this sensitive and it shows I dont have children.

I'm not asking him to stop his son talking about his mum. Just try to redirect and not bring her up himself.

He then went and angrily (aimed at me) told his son not to talk about his mum infront of me. Which will now cause problems.

I don't know what to do, any advice would be appreciated.

OP’s posts: |
Sweetandawfulsour Mon 20-Apr-20 10:32:07

Perhaps you could take it as a cue to share what you like to do. Perhaps he’s in a roundabout way hinting to do those things?

Remember the poor chap isn’t going to school and is bouncing from Mum to Dad. Theyre all that he sees at the mo!

inwood Mon 20-Apr-20 10:38:56

Of course he is going to talk about his mum, you can't ask that he doesn't.

user1493413286 Mon 20-Apr-20 10:43:24

My DSD went through a stage of that and I remember it increasingly grating on me when it was done in a “my mum does it like this” way. We just did what you had suggested to your DP; we would say “oh does she” or similar and then change the subject and eventually it stopped. I don’t think many people understand that it’s hard for a partners ex to be forever involved in your lives so then to have them spoken about constantly just makes it harder.

Stepmumnochildren Mon 20-Apr-20 10:48:34

I've never asked that he not talk about her. Never suggested he not talk about her. Just asked my partner to try to not to get so involved in the conversations and to not bring her up as often as he does himself too.
When we're making brownies and he says my mum does it this way, or we're talking about series and he says my mum only watches films as series are for people who have too much time, my mum doesn't drink when I'm having a drink with dinner, when I'm making toast saying my mum makes her own bread, buying pizza and he says my mum makes hers. These are hard to hear and do make me feel judged, but I would never say that to him. I did the baking of brownies because he was saying his mum baked with him. But just got told my mum does it this way. It would be nice if my partner could just understand its hard to hear when I'm making an effort and he could try to redirect.

homemadecommunistrussia Mon 20-Apr-20 10:52:54

Just like with any other subject you'd rather not hear about, give boring short answers and change the subject.
Like people have said, talk about what you like or find works, ask your dss what he likes and so on.

ifoughtforliberty Mon 20-Apr-20 10:54:41

He's a child and it's his way of saying you're not my mum, my mum is better than you. Whether he is doing it on purpose or not. I would suggest finding things to do that his mum doesn't do. So if his mum likes baking you're always going to get those comparisons... maybe try finding a new programme to watch or take up a new hobby - cycling or gardening. Find things to do at your house that he doesn't do at mums.


LolaSmiles Mon 20-Apr-20 10:55:23

Of course it will cause problems him telling his son not to talk about his mum in front of you, but that's essentially what you're trying to achieve by wanting your DP to redirect the conversation.

Halo1234 Mon 20-Apr-20 11:00:05

It's only an issue if you let it be. "Aww. That's nice your mum makes bread. She is a lovely mum" then give it no more head space. Love him play with him. He isn't comparing you to his mum. U are making that leap. He is chatting about a big part of his world his mum. She will be the star of the show in his 12 year old world. It's not a competition u can still have a lead part but you are not comparable to his mum. Love that he has a loving mum. That's what u would want for him. It's no biggie and no reflection on you as a step parent. Let it go. Dont dwell on him talking about her. Talk back positively and do your own thing with him.

NailsNeedDoing Mon 20-Apr-20 11:00:34

Your step son is a child, so obviously, his mum is a big part of his life. You can’t expect your DH not to talk to his son about things that involve his mother, as that would mean not talking to him about a huge part of his life.

I think you have to recognise that this problem is one that only exists in your head because of your own insecurities or whatever, neither your dss or your DH are doing anything wrong. It’s ok for you to do things differently to the mum, have confidence in what you are doing and just carry on. It will be impossible for you to police conversation in the way you expect, it simply won’t happen without causing upset to everyone, so you need to learn to make peace with the fact that your dss’s mum is a part of your family lives and she will be spoken about.

humanvision123 Mon 20-Apr-20 11:01:08

I am very sorry you forced your OH to tell off his son. It will back fire you in so many levels now. Damage is done.
I also fully get that you feel compared and judged, who wouldn't! I feel the same and my SS don't talk about his mum at all. (We are trying to encourage him to talk about his mum. Reason being; to give him reassurance that all people in his life a happy and no one has bad feelings or issues with each other. ) Only the fact that she exist makes ME compare her with myself.
So, this problem is your problem, something you have to deal with. Counselling maybe?
but for a start I strongly recommend:

Toilenstripes Mon 20-Apr-20 11:02:51

It sounds like a phase he’s going through. Perhaps try to overcome your insecurities and ignore his remarks. Or, lean in to it. Start asking him questions about his mum, let him get it all out there and encourage him. If he’s deliberately being judgy you can disarm him.

pooopypants Mon 20-Apr-20 11:09:13

I'm not a step parent but have previously been in that position

He's a child, of course he'll talk about his mum.

Have you thought about something you could do, just you two, that is outside of what he does with his mum - making something, baking something new, a book you read together, a game you play with him?

Emeeno1 Mon 20-Apr-20 11:15:36

When my boys were that age they were very emotionally attached to me as their mum and still highly affectionate. He is sharing that with you not as a form of criticism or judgement but because his mum is very much in the forefront of his mind (even more so in these uncertain times).

Things often change in the teenage period so you may not have long to endure!

MarieQueenofScots Mon 20-Apr-20 11:21:46

He's a child. He's talking about probably the most important person in his life.

You don't need to find that difficult.

Moondust001 Mon 20-Apr-20 11:24:44

You appear to be posting under multiple ID's? It always makes me wonder about the veracity of posters who need multiple identities...

But I think you are being overly sensitive and very unreasonable. Do you honestly expect your partner and his child to forget their common history and not talk about or to his ex / mother? There is no requirement to cut ties with an ex or live in a state of embattled history. Their relationship didn't work out, they have split up, but appear to be attempting to act in a mature way about that. Of course his son talks about his mum. If having a 12 year old talk about his mum makes you defensive and insecure, you maybe need to wonder whether this is the relationship for you.

slipperywhensparticus Mon 20-Apr-20 11:27:47

I'm not sure it's the son talking about his mum so much as the partner doing it that would irritate me

It sounds like they both have her on a pedestal

I mean what 12 year old discusses drinking with dinner unless it's been discussed around him already

And that tv series thing would nark me but I can't quite articulate why?

slipperywhensparticus Mon 20-Apr-20 11:28:54

And why are you doing her shopping? Is she shielding? Or just more precious?

bluebell34567 Mon 20-Apr-20 11:35:20

i think your dh is the problem here. he is only a child. and your husband is egging and being unreasonable to you.

circusintown Mon 20-Apr-20 11:35:51

Jesus. She's his mum. They all still get on. This poor kid has had to adjust to seeing his dad with someone else and you're still new.

It's uncomfortable so he talks about what makes him comfortable and what he knows. His mum.

Stop causing problems because of your jealousy and insecurities

circusintown Mon 20-Apr-20 11:37:55

@bluebell34567 seriously? He's not her husband for a start.

A man sits with his child at the table and asks "how's your mums college course going" or similar and that's unreasonable? confused

Ffs MN at its worst

aSofaNearYou Mon 20-Apr-20 11:41:34

I tried to talk to my partner and he's reacted badly and said I shouldn't be this sensitive and it shows I dont have children.

This is awful OP.

For the record, my SS does that, and my partner does exactly as you've said; simple responses, no further questions. We're never rude about it, just don't invite further conversation. I don't enjoy hearing about her all the time and neither does he, it's just basic consideration from my partner to steer the conversation away.

More of a problem, though, is the spiteful, patronising and dismissive response he gave you. "I'm worried it would hurt his feelings if I didn't ask/engage" would be one thing, but what he actually said was bang out of order and shows how he thinks of you.

bluebell34567 Mon 20-Apr-20 11:41:47

circusintown dp or dh doesnt matter much at this point.
Ffs MN at its worst thats you when you talk like that.

Serz88 Mon 20-Apr-20 11:42:51

Think you need to consider if you can handle being in a relationship with someone who will always be involved with their ex due to a child. Asking a father to not engage in a conversation with his son about his mother could be very damaging to their relationship which is not fair and you shouldn't be putting him in this position. I assume you knew he had a son when you started the relationship and would have realised the expectation. Kids come first I'm afraid

bluebell34567 Mon 20-Apr-20 11:47:07

if the father always talks about his ex to his son in front of new partner, the child will do the same and that i believe wouldnt be nice and feel uncomfortable for the new partner.

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