Step Parenting Just Isn't For Me

I am so tired of hearing myself complain to my girlfriends about the problems of being a stepmother and the lack of support from my husband.  It has been 5 years of marriage and blending a family of 5 teenagers.  I have had enough and I have said it a hundred times to my husband, who believes things are better.  I want my simple life back with just my daughter and my son.   I had a comfortable home that I sold and we added on to his home as he wasn't willing to move due to his business being established in the community.  So my kids and I relocated 20 miles away, new schools, new house, new friends and many issues.  There is so much history and I don't have the energy to rehash it.  Especially since tonight is a night that my kids are at their fathers and I end up depressed and resentful for what I do for his kids who don't do a darn thing around the house but look at me as I am Cinderella herself.  My daughter resents her stepsisters for the way they treat me and they will pass by each other in the hall without saying a word to each other.  I hate subjecting my kids to an environment that is so tense.  My oldest stepdaughter has been a thorn in my side since the wedding day and her sister alienates herself to her bedroom all day with the exception of coming out of her room to see what I have made for dinner.   The promises to help me clean 20+ rooms in our home go undone and my husband thinks he is helping me by doing most of the housework with me instead of getting help from the kids.   At one time we had a chore chart and it became more of a headache as the oldest never did what she was supposed to and there were no consequences for her.  That is basically how it is with his kids to begin with..they do what they want at their own discretion without any consideration for anyone else in the house.  My husband has rolled his eyes a hundred times when I am upset about situations that still exist and I tell him that I wouldn't have to nag if everyone did what they were supposed to do.  The bio mom sees her kids on Friday nights and is supposed to have them every other Saturday night but it appears they make plans to stay over friends homes instead.  BM lives 15 minutes away and never makes an effort to see the kids outside of the weekend..nor does she contribute financially for them either which is sucking our wallet dry.   My husband refuses to ask her for anything and the kids are always saying how poor she is...she has a college degree and is also a massage therapist , doesn't have her kids all week and while I do I was working 60+ hours a week to help provide around here...I feel like the only purpose I have here is to be the cook, housekeeper, taxi, etc...which I would do for my own kids anyway but it kills me to do for his ungrateful, selfish crew especially on nights when my kids are not here.  The rules that have been set for the kids ( ages15-20)  don't exist in his kids eyes and again no reaction from dad..right down to the 20 year old leaving at night and leaving a note saying she went to sleep at a friends house-after I went to bed.  Dad was hospitalized at the time so of course he didn't say anything even after hearing of it.   I told her that she is not to come here for spring break as I had enough of her disrespect during the past break.  I have told my husband if he allows her to come here and stay I am leaving.   Sad thing is all of my money is tied up in this house and as much as I threaten to leave I don't think I am financially strong enough to do so. I do know if I divorced him and stopped paying for him and his children's health benefits and the thousand dollars a month for groceries could probably afford me a decent apartment.   The second daughter is going away to college in Sept. and I keep telling myself to hold on until then.  I do have a decent relationship with his 16 year old son and he and my son are close.  I just don't know how I am going to spend the rest of my life with the drama and the disrespect from the girls but more so my husband condoning it.  I am simply overwhelmed with what has become  of my life and upset at the negative, angry, depressed person I have become.    But I will keep my chin up and get through another day...for my children!

SteppedOnSmom SteppedOnSmom
41-45, F
3 Responses Mar 10, 2009

I hate being a step mother, at least from my experiences. When I married my husband, his son was 9, and he lived with us because his mother is a deadbeat. After many years of failed attempts at happiness and harmony, I have discovered that his son, who is now 21, isn't a person I would be involved with if I wasn't married to his father. We have totally different morals and views. He constantly gives his dad guilt trips and turns everything around to make me look bad. I love my husband, but if I had to do it all over again, I wouldn't do it. This BOY has caused alot of stress in our household. He is the only thing we have ever argued about.

You are not the only ones. My story is slightly different. I don't have kids of my own, and I am with an amazing boyfriend and we love and cherish each other dearly... which is pretty much the only thing that keeps us together. I have treated the kids with respect, never tried to assume a parent role expect for providing, but I rarely if ever applied any disciple but nicely requested their participation or their help. It works with the 13 year girl, and I believe we have a healthy relationship, but the 15 year old girl treats me like I am a lower being. Apparently, it's because she doesn't want to "betray" her mom... with which I am not competing with whatsoever. I have just realized the extend of her loathing my presence in our "family" vacation together. Before my life with them, I travelled lots, so I continued and figured, since the girls had never been anywhere, that we should go to Hawaii. So we did, twice over the last three years. The most recent trip, I am in none of the pictures, as if I was never there, I was not spoken to or invited to participate in anything. I found my salvation by reading as much as I could to escape the harsh reality... Perhaps I am trying to hard. What we are doing about it, their dad and I, is seeking counseling to make sense out of it, so that he is not caught in the middle and so that I can have a civil relationship with his older daughter. In the meantime, I will stop providing and being a taxi. Because I cannot go on like this, having ALL the disadvantages of being a mother... and none of the advantages!<br />
But I am not going to lie... if the status quo remains, I will have to have my own apartment, even though financially it's going to be hard, and if our relationship is strong enough we will continue to see each other, without the presence of the older daughter. I don't want to punish the younger one though. We will see what counseling will do for us. In the meantime, I am hanging on for life and escaping as often as I can.

I completely sympathize with you. It almost sounds like we are dealing with the same BM except ours is a high school drop out, but she still claims that she is poor and has no money. However she and her boyfriend have managed to add satellite cable, a hot tub, some horses and a new horse trailer to their home. Yet the kids have clothes that do not fit them and their furnace is on the fritz. My fiance and I have a son together and I just want to focus on him but I am torn when I here that the kids are not able to do certain things because the BM has no money or she just says no. I just dont want to think about them sometimes and I hate that. This whole blended family business is stressful and by far the most challenging thing out there. And it really is unfair that step moms get a bad rap for just being a step mom. That stupid Cinderella movie made it rough for the good step mom's out there. But no matter what we do...we always going to be unappreciated by the kids and misunderstood by our spouses. I dont mean to be a killjoy, but it's really a horrible place to be and I dont know where the silver lining is in all of this. All I can say is be strong and hopefully things will get better. I can say that it does make feel better to read your story...it makes me feel normal that I am not the only one.