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AIBU to be annoyed with DStepSon and his attitude?

253 replies

SummerHolidayStress · 24/07/2015 20:20

NC because I've seen the judgment and flaming some Stepmothers get for having any issue with DSChildren. Some advice would be really appreciated.
I've been with DP for 9yrs, 3DCs together, 1 DsS from his previous rship. DsS (age 12) lives with his Mum.
All children have always been treated equally, I love them all equally, and treat them the same, as does their DF.
The issue is, how to deal with DsS at the moment. We moved away 18months ago because of work and university situations (work for DP, Uni for me- commuting 4hrs daily was physically and mentally exhausting), so it made sense to move. DsS was aware of this from the start, that a move was the only way we could keep our heads above water.
We've tried our hardest to see DsS in this year, to the point we travelled the 3hrs back to our old town as arranged, arrived at his home and was told, "he's out, doesn't want to see you".
He ignores us all of the time, despite is really trying to talk and arrange to see him. He doesn't talk until until a week before his birthday, when he tells us what he wants...and then a few days before Xmas, and tells us what his DM is getting him, so we can " decide what else so he doesn't get two of the same".
He's largely ignored our calls and texts for months now, until Lo and Behold, a text three days ago, saying "It's school holidays now, when are you coming to get me?" followed by "You can take me to place, as it's near to your new house. And, "Mum wants to know when your coming, and where you're going to take me. Answer me"

We have always treated all four children to have respect and manners, and if he was here, he would be told off for blatant brattish attitude.

I'm just annoyed. He ignores DP and me for 11 months of the year, but when he thinks treats and presents are involved, he wants some contact and issues demands. We wouldn't take that from the 3DCs at home, are we meant to from DS who isn't here? I don't know.

Any help would be appreciated. Thank you.

OP posts:
ungratefulfecker · 24/07/2015 21:35

As for DSS feeling abandoned: as far as I can see, he is cared for adequately. Yes, his father moved away - some people's father moves countries. It is worth listening to some of the stories the young people not much older than OP's DSS trying to get onto lorries in Calais tell reporters.

IonaNE I would NOT suggest to the OP that she go the 'oh so many other people have it worse than you' route.

Here is what the family's move away tells him:

'You left me. You kept everyone else, but you left me. You don't want me.'

It doesn't matter what the adult reasons were, these are very likely his feelings and it's bloody important to take them into account.OP, not painting you as the wicked witch here, it sounds like a touch situation.

Can you give us more background? Was he asked who he wanted to live with? Was he given a voice in the move at all? What's your/your OH's relationship with his mother like? Can you ask her what he's said to her about his feelings? Can she help make him feel more included?

ungratefulfecker · 24/07/2015 21:36

*tough situation.

Iflyaway · 24/07/2015 21:36

Fuck that. People are allowed to move if needs be.....

Sounds to me his mum is still pissed off his dad moved on and had 3 more children and is influencing him.... bitch

Teens are hard times always. Just try and be there for him. In whatever way.

Oswin · 24/07/2015 21:39

Wtf iflyaway. Why is the mother a bitch. Its the dad and sm who have moved three hours from his child and then appear to have made one journey.
That puts him firmly in the shit parent camp.
Op I suggest you find the thread where a mother has done similar to what you have done and see the effects on the dss.

SummerHolidayStress · 24/07/2015 21:42

FWIW, DsS was with us 3 times a week 1wk, and the weekend the other week. These arrangements were set, but these obviously couldn't be maintained once we moved. Distance dictated that. We arranged with his Mum, that each half term, bank holiday weekends, summer holidays, and any time he ever wanted to be here, we'd be there to get him. I knew it was a bad idea to post this on MN.

OP posts:
SurlyCue · 24/07/2015 21:44

Sounds to me his mum is still pissed off his dad moved on and had 3 more children and is influencing him.... bitch

I have read and re-read the OP several times and i simply cannot see how youve arrived at this conclusion. Can you break it down for me please?

AyeAmarok · 24/07/2015 21:44

Unfortunately if you choose to move 3 hours away from your child then you shouldn't be surprised if they don't have much of a relationship with you.

A parent shouldn't take a permanent job 3 hours away and not see their child.

You &DH fucked up there. This is the consequence.

Mistigri · 24/07/2015 21:46

Moving doesn't make you a terrible parent. It's life, and increasingly people do have to move to be near work. A 12 year old is absolutely able to understand this. My son's best friend, who is also 12, has moved the best part of 1000km from his father, but his mum has made sure that he has some contact and I don't think he feels abandoned. He's old enough to be fairly rational about it actually.

OTOH, OP, it is puzzling that no regular arrangements for contact have been put in place. This is up to your partner and his ex, not your DsS.

SurlyCue · 24/07/2015 21:46

We arranged with his Mum, that each half term, bank holiday weekends, summer holidays, and any time he ever wanted to be here, we'd be there to get him

Ok so what was the plan for this summer as he doesnt seem to know it?

What makes you think it was a bad idea to post?

wannabestressfree · 24/07/2015 21:46

Ok so text her and agree what weeks work and stick to them. Also don't provide super treats all the time. Does the mum work? Can you work things like that? Have him for certain weeks in the summer.

SummerHolidayStress · 24/07/2015 21:48

Oswin shit parent camp ?? I and DP have always had a great relationship with DsS. When you are in such severe financial hardship, exhausted with trying to study from distance travelling, keep a home, raise 3 children, DP work ending with no chance in local branch, and have to leave your loved home to be nearer to having some stability, amd still feel guilty- then you can judge me. Until then, do sit and polish your halo.

OP posts:
Mistigri · 24/07/2015 21:50

The mistake you are making OP is leaving the decision making re contact up to your DsS. At 12 it still needs to be arranged between adults, although of course children this age should get consulted about arrangements.

Oswin · 24/07/2015 21:51

Nothing more regular? There's parents on here that travel that distance eow to see there child and most the time there not the ones who moved away!
You and your dh need to fix this. Stop blaming a child for you and your dh making him feel abandoned.
This situation is your dh fault not dss and you need to see that.
Could you imagine going three hours away from your children and only seeing them in the holidays? For some reason I get the feeling that would be unacceptable to you.
No way in hell would I do that to my child.

HoldYerWhist · 24/07/2015 21:52

You went from three times a week and EOW to occasional holiday visits?

Fuck sake. You dropped the ball and your husband is a knob.

SurlyCue · 24/07/2015 21:53

Why did you choose a uni 3 hours away? Was it always the plan to move there?

TopCivilServant · 24/07/2015 21:57

It wasn't initially that clear (to me) that you had gone from being there so frequently to so infrequently. I can't believe that neither of you realised how upsetting this would be for a child. Poor little man Sad

EllenJanethickerknickers · 24/07/2015 21:58

I can see that the tea time visits would be impractical, but you should really have maintained the EOW, OP. Dropping from your previous arrangements to school holidays only is pretty extreme. Children need regularity and routine, and 10, 11 or 12 is still young.

Oswin · 24/07/2015 21:58

Actually i have been in that position. I chose not to do it.
I now survive on esa in a grotty flat that for the last two years has had a leak from upstairs. I have no chance of improving my life now. I could have but no way in hell would I do that to my child. We are together and that's what matters to her.
Would you leave any of your children op?

SummerHolidayStress · 24/07/2015 21:59

ungratefulfucker my OH and stepsons Mum split up a year before we met, and we always had a brilliant relationship with DsS. His Mum is a good mother, i can't fault her for that. But she hates DP. They were together in their Teens, and she still hates him. He parrots what she says, and repeats "Mam says you're a prick", etc etc ad finitum.

We had to move, genuinely had to. DP job was ending unless he transferred, I was considering leaving my degree, because commuting so far was exhausting with bringing up the kids, one with SN, and it seemed the only way we would live, without giving up his job and my degree, and going on the Dole. Neither of us wanted that.
DsS said to me he wanted to come with us when we moved. It was discussed (and by discussed, I mean XP attacked my DP and said "not a chance in hell is he going").

I'm pretty much the go-between where DP and his XP are concerned. And despite some of the flaming I've got, I really do love my stepson. I know he's hitting out. I only asked for advice to help.

OP posts:
jeanmiguelfangio · 24/07/2015 21:59

Coming from a person whose dad did a very similar thing, although the other children are my SMs not my dads, I felt completely abandoned. And I really can see how seeing him maybe 5-6 days a fortnight to holidays, would make him feel abandoned, like he comes second to you and the other DC.
Children don't see finance, or travel or commuting. They just see that their parents world revolves around them. It's tough when that bubble is burst. And unfortunately you will get the tough end of it. I would imagine his mum is getting a bit of that too!

AyeAmarok · 24/07/2015 22:01

When you are in such severe financial hardship, exhausted with trying to study from distance travelling, keep a home, raise 3 children

With all due respect, studying that distance away was YOUR choice. If it meant you only seeing your 3 children twice a year would you have made the decision to do it?

Didn't think so.

SummerHolidayStress · 24/07/2015 22:02

To answer everyone who as asked, No. I would never leave my children, at all- I couldn't.
But moving from the town you live, as a NonResident Parent doesn't make you a "knob".

OP posts:
SurlyCue · 24/07/2015 22:04

So DP's transfer just happened to be in the same place where you had been doing your degree, 3 hours from where you lived?

DoJo · 24/07/2015 22:05

Has this behaviour started since you moved away? How often did you see him before you moved and how often do you see him now?

Florriesma · 24/07/2015 22:05

So you give the same response towards leaving your dc as xo gave yet you present her response as unreasonable? Interesting.

So the major theme coming out of all this is that there isn't enough contact. So what do you intend to do about that?

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