I have been in the childrens life for about 10 years now. I don't think I could have loved them more if they had been my own.

But I find that no matter what I have done for my stepdaughter I will always be the evil one.

And I am heart broken, and running on empty

empty empty
51-55, F
7 Responses Nov 13, 2007

I do understand how you are feeling as i am in the same shoes. But in my own case, my stepdaughter is the problem. She comes in-between my husband as often as she wants, and this gets me down most of the time. But my stepson really appreciates me. He once said it in the presence of several people that even though he lost his mum, his stepmum has filled the gap so well that he knows he has not missed anything! That made my day! Since then, i've learnt to overlook my stepdaughter's behaviour.
So keep doing what you know is right. Somehow, you'll be rewarded someday. I feel it is better to be have a clear conscience, no matter what. I have done my bit to my steps, and i believe my reward is sure. A lot of people do not realize that being a stepmother imposes so much on one. It's a sacrifice.

i know the feeling. I love my stepdaughter, though I will admit it is different from the way I love my son. She has a mother, though I think she is deficient (this is not said out loud). I have been the one she calls when she is sick (over her dad or mom), so at least she knows I am available and dependable. Hopefully the rest will come later, but it has been ten years already...

I am your age and after almost 20 years, left. I realize that unless you have lived this or seen this phenomena, you have NO idea what those posting are posting about. My mother was a step-parent and when I met my husband who had 3 children and me, none, she said "run." When I first starting having difficulties, I thought it would get better with time, but actually, I finally came to realize that they are not the problem. If a step-child's parent does not set boundaries and allows children to act out their feelings in inappropriate ways (directly or covertly), the situation will not improve. One of my SDs told me after she was older (and still acting out by the way!) that she knew that her BF would sanction her behavior and that she knew if there was a wedge btwn him and I, she could easily take advantage (which she did often but HE let her), and she knew how to cause the wedge (ok, good luck detaching so you don't let your step-kid "bother" you when they are purposefully harming you). I do not regret the time I spent with them. I learned a lot and have a LOT of compassion for step-parents. But if the system is broke (here, the family), you will not be able to fix it. The father needs to take care of HIS issues (i.e., guilt, using the kids against you, etc.).

That's really what it comes down to -- you hit it right on: the parent needs to parent really well and not be driven by residual guilt and the desire to be liked, which all parents feel to some extent but perhaps hold it better in check when acting as a team... and we like to think that our partners will do right by us, since they asked us to join them in life, but it is amazing how blind we can be when it comes to our offspring, unfortunately. So, I sympathize with you completely. My husband sometimes seems to get it, but often doesn't until after the fact and sometimes not even then. It is easier to deal with when you know you have love and support of your spouse, who knows the situation and can sympathize, and it is best when issues are dealt with quickly and directly, but for all the unhealthy reasons you mentioned, that doesn't seem to happen much. And it is tiring, yes. So I have such mixed feelings for you - happy you are taking care of yourself, even if that means leaving a long relationship, but sad that it came to that after all that time... that your husband could not be there enough for you... but I also know how that feels, and it is even harder in the end than the kids' anger and nonsense. It feels like more of a betrayal, whereas the kid crap feels less personal (that feels directed at a role I am in rather than me personally -- I say this because my step daughters have never shown any interest in me and would be hard-pressed to tell you much about me, if you were to ask them).... which is what brings us here together, I suppose. I wish you all the best as you move along with your life. I have a feeling you will not regret putting your life as a stepmom in the past tense.

wow I feel the same way, I could give them the moon and stars and still they could not say that I was a likable person. we have been shopping together and it was all giggles and laughter until we seen someone that we knew then the "PLEASE HELP ME LOOK" comes out. I feel as if I give and give and give and in return I get nothing. I wish I could explain to them I will never take there mothers place ever but I am just another person in there life that loves and cares for them so deeply. I'm running on empty as well

The worst part is that they probably won't remember all that you have done for them so be careful that you don't end up resentful. I remember what I did and feel okay and it taught me a valuable lesson when they started acting out...I try very hard not to put others before myself now. I would go without a phone so that the SD could have a smart phone. Not today. I am not selfish and I did not go to the other extreme, BUT I had to learn to take care of myself as most women do...we are the caretakers of the world right? I got into therapy and that has helped me a lot. I do not miss them and I have the serenity I need and they can have all their dysfunctions (the father and his kids and the ex). I have enough of my own which I am working on...who needs to take on the issues of others. It's different if the father and kids want to work things out, but read the internet - that is not a very realistic optimism.

I understand how bad you feel! I have 2 step daughters and I feel like I can do nothing right by them. It's like I'm invisible. I hope you find comfort knowing that you are not alone. Step families can be wonderful but they can also be painfully hard. Keep trying even though you are hurting. Remember that kids don't have the prespective of age and life experience. Maybe someday when she is older she will understand how hard it was for you and how hard you tried. If not, it's her loss. Best of luck to you!

i feel the same as you do.my SD is turning 22 yrs. old and she's a spoiled brat.even she worked all her allowances and everything is from his father..no control of spending and a very jealous girl.i think i've done my part taking care of her but she's really ungrateful in everything that i do.

I understand and send you a internet hug. No one knows how it feels to be rejected no matter how hard to try, until it happens to them.<br />
<br />
Hang in there. Just remember that no matter what she does that you've done your best by her.<br />
<br />
My step kids hate me, thanks to their biomom. But I tell them the no matter weather they like me our hate me they have to respect me in my home. I tell them that they can hate me but it doesn't stop me from loving them. And I remind them that no matter what they can always come to me and that I will always be there for them.