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I hate my "SM" - is it me?

(14 Posts)
WSID Wed 25-May-16 03:34:13

I am looking for advice on how to handle this situation with my SM. I'll be straight up; I find her sneaky, manipulative, spiteful, underhand and selfish. So, I may be coming from a biased place wink. I don't know where to start.

Her and my DF got together about 5 years ago, and from the beginning I was really pleased he'd found someone and felt very keen and ready to welcome her into our family. However, it soon become apparent that she did not see things the same way. We went on a big family holiday the first year, and on one of the nights, her, my Dad and her kid and their DP all emerged onto their balconies, while me and DB sat flumoxed, and they all went off to dinner. I was in my 20s at the time, and hurt beyond belief.

Earlier that year she had 'joined' my Dad on a trip we had planned abroad, long before they got together. I was moving from one part of a foreign country to another, it was all planned that we would drive together from one part of the country to another. It had been planned before they got together, but she came along and then insisted that we move everything a day earlier, so she could get back in time for work. This wasn't possible as I was going to stay with a friend for some weeks, and had already arranged a date that couldn't be changed to arrive. I got the sense that she wanted to assert her power and demonstrate that things fitted round her (I'm not a paranoid person at all; it was odd and she invited herself on the trip and then tried to change all the arrangements to fit with her).

She has become close with my grandmother, and out of nowhere, my grandmother is suddenly very rude to me whenever we speak. I don't have much wider family and to me it is devastating. My father talks sometimes about her controlling behaviour and suggests he wants to end things. I am broadly supportive of their relationship, but find it upsetting as she tries to prevent us spending time together one on one. He has confided, after some years, that she is jealous and insecure.

Most recently there has been a big argument. She behaved really unpleasantly and I don't feel able to visit my DF's house again right now. Our relationship is breaking down, slowly but surely. We were previously very close, but this person causes so much conflict that everything feels hard and upsetting and we gradually speak less and less. WWYD?

icklekid Wed 25-May-16 03:43:31

Sounds like you have several relationships you need to work through- your df should you need to explain how you feel too. If you can't go to their house can you meet at yours or out somewhere. Explain it's important to you to have time together without sm and why.

Your grandmother- you need a proper conversation as to if you have upset her/ something has happened. Hopefully you will get to the bottom of what has caused the change.

I would be civil and polite to sm but not engage much further...

Out of interest should is the dp in this scenario? Bit confused... Dad and her kid and their DP

MardleBum Wed 25-May-16 03:45:00

I would say try to see your father alone as much as possible and if the atmosphere gets really awful when you do have to see her then just tell him you don't get along and it would be better for everyone if you and stopped any pretence at being friends and saw him alone from now on.

Try not to get too sucked into criticizing her to your dad, even if he is having a moan about her. He may vent to you occasionally when they are going through a bad patch but if you start being openly critical of her or encouraging him to leave it could backfire on you when he decides she's wonderful after all and you are spoilt child who wants his relationship to fail so you can have him all to yourself.

MardleBum Wed 25-May-16 03:46:26

ickle I think she means the SM's adult child and their partner.

WSID Wed 25-May-16 03:52:12

Thanks for the responses. Yeah this is part of the problem - she objects to us ever spending time together without her there. It's not a slight on her, but I would really like sometimes to see my Dad by himself, to have a catch up, just to two of us. I don't think it's weird at all that we want time together, but she insists on always having to come with us. She has her own children, and of course, my Dad doesn't insist on always being there when she sees them. They also have their own father too, whereas our mother died over a decade ago. My Dad is literally my only family, which makes is more distressing really. I am happy they are together as I think it makes my Dad happy to have someone. I just want to see him by myself sometimes. I would never encourage for them to break up.

DropYourSword Wed 25-May-16 03:55:00

You've started 4 threads with virtually the same OP. Maybe you could request for the multiples to be deleted.
I don't really understand the holiday thing. What were you and your brother flummoxed about? They went out to their balconies then went out to dinner...were they waiting for you but you were too confused to get ready and go out?
I don't think there's much you can 'do'. Spend time with your dad, and as a PP said don't criticise her to him. He may want to have a rant at times but it doesn't mean he'll appreciate you passing on your opinion of her.

WSID Wed 25-May-16 04:02:30

Hi Drop, yes I'm not quite sure how to delete threads. Apologies for the duplicates. The holiday thing - we were sitting on the balcony and the others emerged dressed to the nines and ready to go out for a more formal dinner. Her DD and DD's BF emerged first, and not long after, our DF and SM. We were - ?? Where you going?? And off they all went to dinner. No invite for us, no explanation. We were younger at the time and it was just a bit weird. He said afterwards that he didn't know until the last minute and just got told just as they were going out. Still off if you ask me.

dogdrifts Wed 25-May-16 04:08:35

So, you are in your thirties, your dad has been with your step mum for years, and you are still wanting to spend time with him in your own? I dunno, it's a bit bonkers, tbh. Maybe concentrate more on your own life and let him get on with his? And just be ready to give him a hand if he does decide to split up.

To be a grown woman in your thirties still moaning about a spiteful stepmom is a bit lame, really. Your dad chose her, and it really isn't any of your business.

Whatever he 'confides' in you, you just make noncommittal noises. We all vent about our partners, but woe betide anyone else that does.

The holiday thing is a red herring. Two couples went out for dinner and two other grown adults sulked?

I just think 'distressing' is a bit OTT. If I was married to guy whose grown children in their thirties were sulking about having to see me as well as him, I wouldn't have a very high opinion of them, I'm afraid...

Time to move on over who your dad decided to marry.

WSID Wed 25-May-16 04:26:33

Hi Dog, no never mentioned it to him, was just odd to all go on holiday together and to not be invited out to a pre-arranged meal. They aren't married and as i say, whenever he complains about her, I always am supportive of their relationship and point out that overall they seem happy. I don't slag her off to him, I agree, they are together and we have our own lives. I don't think it's unusual to want to spend time together sometimes, just for a drink or a meal to catch up. I'm happy to do things together too, and we do.

CoYoAddict Wed 25-May-16 06:21:21

How old were you when they went out for dinner without you and your brother and didn't ask if you'd like to come?

CoYoAddict Wed 25-May-16 06:21:42

And how was was your SM's DD?

sandgrown Wed 25-May-16 06:51:24

Dog I think whatever your age it is nice to spend some time alone with your parents. I often go out or on holiday with my adult children and DP does not always want or expect to come. DP also goes to sporting events etc with his sons and I am happy for him to go alone. OP should try and arrange time alone with her dad and try and to see her grandmother and find out what is wrong.

sandgrown Wed 25-May-16 06:53:07

I have to add that my ex-h is married to a woman who never lets him.out of her sight. I find it really odd!

Boiing Wed 25-May-16 22:04:24

Of course you want to see your Dad on his own sometimes, that's completely normal, I love both my parents but sometimes have to ask Mum to get off phone so I can catch up with Dad properly. It sounds like your SM sees you as a rival for his affection and is creating situations in which she can feel she has 'won' it. I can see why you are still dwelling on the dinner thing, the lack of respect to you was incredible. Your Dad is being a bit weak about it all but he is in a very tricky position. What to do - ha - I have no idea, all you can really do is have polite adult conversations with all of them and avoid bitching about SM to anyone who knows her, and gently but firmly remind your Dad you need one on ine time sometimes. Go to see your Gran and try to sort that out. Invite your Dad out somewhere, even if just coffee, and make it clear to him and SM that the invitation is only to him so you can have some 'Dad-daughter time'. Hopefully you can manage it in a non-confrontational manner, when she gets angry about it just look puzzled and say 'but of course we can't all do everything together all of the time, wouldn't that be silly, yes we must all go out together another time." Then repeat and repeat.

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