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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:
EmeraldKitten · 26/07/2015 20:19

Moving hours away from your nr children is shit.

How you have the nerve to say you both love the children equally is beyond me. Ever dumped your own kids and moved a couple of hundred miles away? Didn't think so.

The poor kid is hurt and jealous and lashing out. Shame on you both for pissing off and leaving him.

HerRoyalNotness · 26/07/2015 20:26

Have you looked at prices of natioanl express buses instead OP? We managed to get a last minute bus from down sth to oop north (8hr trip) for about 30quid. Much, much cheaper than we expected and cheaper than the train

TensionWheelsCoolHeels · 26/07/2015 20:58

The OP is about the attitude/behaviour of the DSS, & the OP looking for suggestions in how to deal with this. The DSS has 2 parents, both can and should be 'parenting' the 12 yr old & addressing the situation. It reads to me that only 1 parent of the DSS is actually doing any parenting & the other hasn't seen/spoken to the DSS in 11 mth (from the OP). If the OP genuinely wants something to be done to change this situation surely she can start with her DH & seriously look at how he has functioned as a parent in the last 2 years towards his DS. The lead up to the move, all the things taken into account when considering options/moving, how that was handled with regards to the DSS, how they left, what efforts have been made to maintain contact/communication/the relationship etc.

If the OP had already done that & her DH could not have handled things any better or differently, then by all means she's justified in asking for help/views/opinions to see what could be done now to try & fix things. However reading the replies given & questions asked but not answered tells me that the OP's DH would not fair well to that level of scrutiny in how he's handled this situation since the discussion 1st came up about the possibility of moving.

Recognising that huge fuck up would go some way to giving the OP & her DH some answers as to why DSS is acting out & what they could try, in order to repair the damage done over the past 2 years. Putting responsibility for how the DSS is currently behaving on the DSS & his DM is not the best way to try & get a solution here. IMVHO.

captainproton · 26/07/2015 21:32

Unless I'm reading the OP incorrectly aren't all the children related? If so, when did it get decided that half siblings don't get the right to a relationship as full siblings? First by their parents by putting them at the bottom of priorities, then by posters only concerned with the father and eldest son spending time together. If contact was 50/50 are they not suffering too?

I don't think even courts care about half sibling relationships. I know not all half siblings get on (but neither do all full siblings), but OPs DSS is probably missing his siblings too. Does he have other siblings? Has he gone from being 1 of 4 to almost being an only? Did he want to be part of the family and is left with his mum? Apologies if I have missed this if already discussed, I just feel sorry for all the children in these sort of situations. I know sometimes it can't be helped and a move away has to be done, but I think that for some people the feelings of children are often overlooked and their ability to bounce back over estimated. These children have no say at all in their lives. It must be incredibly heart breaking watching your family torn apart. I cannot see if OP has recognised this yet, perhaps she was just having a rant in her OP, or maybe she is finding it hard to acknowledge her own wants and desires playing a part in causing a child's misery.

Some serious bridges need to be rebuilt I think and soon before the damage is irreversible.

clam · 26/07/2015 22:55

"I fucking hate when this drivel is trotted out. Disagreement with OP equals perfect life? I mean, seriously???"

As I said, this is type of shit is what makes MN vile nowadays.

Anyway, it's not simple "disagreement" with the OP - it's downright character assassination. And who the fuck does MadamArcatiAgain think she is, demanding answers so aggressively to such intrusive questions?

HoneyLemon · 27/07/2015 00:13

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

TheRealAmyLee · 27/07/2015 00:44

I can understand the move BUT I can't understand why when you previously did a 4 hr commute 5 days a week you cannot do a 3 hr one eow?

He will be feeling abandonned so he punishes you by refusing to see you/messing you about.

I suspect if you talk to his mum and organise proper regular contact (eow and longer periods in hols) you will see it calm.

TheRealAmyLee · 27/07/2015 00:46

Don't let her mess you about either btw. You have a right to regular contact. Get it and maintain it and I think you will all be happier.

JointheJoyride · 27/07/2015 01:02

We moved away from my stepsons. 298 miles away to be precise.At the time they were 19, 20 and 26. In all respects, adults. Eldest clearly an adult. We spoke to them all and explained the reason. Sat down with them and their mum, who I get on great with. Even at their ages they had some issues. We talked through it and made plans for weekends here, weeks when they were off work etc. and these were effectively men. I know you didn't mean to be cruel OP but you should've involved the lad before the event, not after. Being a stepmum is hard and I count myself lucky that I can now say I'm actually pals with my stepsons mother (not always the case). You really need to take some positive steps to bring the lad back in. Its not his fault that you and his dad went on to make three more children and just assume he'd be ok with his role in that new family.

JointheJoyride · 27/07/2015 01:09

A post above mentioned using buses for travel. When my two youngest stepsons come up to us they take the megabus. Its a bit like the vengabus but with less dancing. We pay about £13 a ticket to come from Exeter to Manchester. Worth looking into?

JointheJoyride · 27/07/2015 01:13

If you subscribe to megabus website they email you the super cheap seats about six weeks in advance. My lads are coming up in October for £2.50 each. Look into it OP.

WinniethePoohinthePool · 27/07/2015 01:18

I think OP has been somewhat economical with the truth or this is a complete wind up

JointheJoyride · 27/07/2015 01:20

Oh I hope it's not a bloody wind up. I rrely talk about being a stepmother and it'd be nice to not have done so for someone's shits n giggles.

JointheJoyride · 27/07/2015 01:20


WinniethePoohinthePool · 27/07/2015 01:28

JoinintheJoyride - I reckon a large percentage of AIBU is a bleeding windup.

JointheJoyride · 27/07/2015 01:31

It surely is. I've been here enough years to see that and still....I get sucked in.

WinniethePoohinthePool · 27/07/2015 02:00

It happens to the best of us.

LineRunner · 27/07/2015 08:50

JointheJoyride I nevertheless appreciated your advice, and I think you are spot on about considering the feelings of even adult step-children / children when moving away. Interesting about the Megabus prices, too. So thank you.

clam · 27/07/2015 09:24

I don't see why this should be a wind-up (and don't believe it is).

Spartans · 27/07/2015 10:02

those posters blaming OP and her DP for moving away, would you say the same if it had been their mother that 'needed' to move because of her work situation and that had impacted on the relationship with DC?

I would tell either parent the same if they move away without sorting out how visits were going to work. Or moving would mean contact would effectivly stopped.

SurlyCue · 27/07/2015 10:18

"Don't let her mess you about either btw. You have a right to regular contact. Get it and maintain it and I think you will all be happier."

No she doesnt. The person with the right to contact is the child. Contact which his parent withdrew. His parent is the one who failed to uphold his responsibility to allow regular contact for this child. The child's mother is the only one who actually is meeting her responsibility to the child regarding contact.

notinagreatplace · 27/07/2015 12:05

Something I just realised is that the SS is 12 now, so 18 months ago, he will have been 10 or 11. That is definitely too young to be making his own contact arrangements.

magoria · 27/07/2015 13:31

OPs H doesn't seem to have made any plans to see his child over the holidays. Not even for a weekend. A 12 year old boy has had to contact his dad to find out if he is going to bother.

Poor kid can probably see how much of a shit his dad really gives.

textfan · 27/07/2015 20:39

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

bereal7 · 27/07/2015 22:04

surley I disagree. The OP says the mother refused to let the son move with his dad even though that's what he wanted. He's old enough to know who he wants to live with. So, I think the mum was being selfish by not allowing the son to live with the parent he wanted.

I don't believe that his behaviour has any valid excuse, sorry. He should still be respectful regardless and I don't think you should bend over backwards.
OP, I'm sure it will get better as he gets older if you constantly remind me him that he's important to you and explain about the move. Maybe you can have him over all summer? This will give you guys plenty of time to bond. Don't see why he should bond with his dad without the other kids when that would not encourage integration. Goodluck with it all !

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