I met the man who is and has been my husband for 12 years, when I was 14 and he was 18. My mother was a waitress at a "high society" restaurant where my husband also worked as a busboy. I was sitting in the snack bar area when he came out of the kitchen. He smiled at me and my heart just melted. I bugged my mom for a year to get him to come over to our house. My mother had told me after that night that he was her favorite busboy because he was sweet and very honest. He would watch their tables and their tips for them; other busboys were known to steal tips. After having seen him at the skating rink with his then girlfriend (she threatened me for looking at him) I didn't think I'd ever get to know him better. One night (right before Christmas) my mother came home and said "guess who's coming over tonight?" I said "I don't know, who?" She said "Steve" and I jumped up and hung mistletoe everywhere I could! There is a picture of our very first kiss in my mother's photo album. We dated for 3 years before I realized that he was too jealous to deal with my career choice of modeling and I also wanted to see as much of the world as I could while I was young. I broke it off and went and did all the things I wanted to do. Meantime, he got a girl pregnant and married her; they continued to have 2 more children and I figured that I had traded love for life. I came home to visit my mother for her birthday 13 years after we had broken up. My mother had arranged for he and I to meet so I could tell him that I still did and would always love him; I found out that he felt the same way and had been telling my mother all along too. After a couple hours of talking he had to go home, relieve the babysitter and call his wife to come home from work and eat for her break (she worked at night). He found that she had called in sick that night and figured out where she was due to what the person at her work told him. When she came home he "called her" on her behavior and she came clean about having an affair. He told her to get out and promptly called me. They had not even slept in the same bed for at least 8 months at that time. She insisted on taking all three of their girls (2,6 and 8) with her when she left. I moved back to my home state and in with him. We got married 3 years later (after his and my divorce). We have since buried my mother, had to raise all three of his girls through their teen years, and endured a lot of problems between myself, his ex and his girls. If I did not love him SO much I would not have stuck it out through all that we have been through. I personally never had or wanted any children so it was and has been difficult to become an instant mother to teenagers. The first 5 years of our marriage were perfect as far as our relationship. The last 7 years have been very difficult and hard on our relationship. I never saw myself growing old with anyone else and I still don't see it any other way. We will work through all our difficulties and grow old together, that I believe is true. I have a lot of work to do on my attitude as well as he. After having lost my mother (my best friend) and acquired 2 teens (1 very troubled one) all within 6 months of each other, I have gone through and am still in a deep depression. None of the 3 daughters are speaking to me or even acknowledging my presence in the room when they come in. The youngest who is about to turn 18, has moved out and into her aunt's house along with the middle daughter who is now 21. I feel for my husband who is caught in the middle of all this but I am tired of being "the wicked step mother". I have brought a lot of this on due to a bad temper but my husband refuses to talk about anything that makes him step out of his comfort zone and his girls are the same way. With no communication there is no resolution of problems of any kind. Teens are inherently lazy and moody. I work full time cleaning at a hotel; I would come home, have to clean the house; was expected to cook dinner and clean everything up after wards. I went on strike for a year in 2004; He finally told them to help or he did it himself. I have lost my cool and said things that they (the girls) should not have heard, but I can't just hold everything in like my husband does. I was desperate to get him to see my point of view but he always sided with his girls. He would tell me to watch what I spent at the grocery store because the account was "teetering on the brink of red" and the kids got mad at me for not buying just what they wanted and said that I made them feel guilty for asking for "food for survival" or whatever else they needed. He never told them that we didn't have enough money, he only told me and let them think whatever they thought. So for the last 7 years I have been the "wicked step mother", when all I ever wanted was to love him. I have given my all to accommodate him and these kids. I am told by him that the situation is all my fault and that I am the only one that needs to go to counseling. I am going to counseling to fix my depression, bring back my happiness and renew my marriage but, I don't believe that the problems with the kids are all because of me and me alone. I love him with all my heart and I'm not giving him up for anyone or anything. He says it will all work itself out, which is not the way to fix things, it's the way to avoid things that make you uncomfortable. If he were half as uncomfortable as I am right now, he would do something about the situation. I am a take charge and get it done kind of person. My husband is passive to a fault but I love him. And we lived happily ever after.