Stepchildren

Esther - posted on 02/04/2010 ( 63 moms have responded )

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I have no experience with stepchildren (thank god) so maybe that's why I don't get it, but I was browsing around COMs and came accross a forum that dealt with stepmothers who don't get along with their stepchildren. The things these women said just made me sick to my stomach. But again, maybe I'm being unreasonable.

One mom complained that she works every other weekend and her stepdaughter comes over every weekend to spend time with her dad and she resents the girl for it because now she doesn't get any alone time with her husband on weekends. Another one was upset that they drove 6 hours to see her stepdaughter for X-mas and the stepdaughter (14) didn't thank them for driving out there. I'm thinking she shouldn't have to. Her dad should want to be with her on X-mas. Then there was the mom who told her husband that she cannot handle her 5-year-old stepdaughter spending every weekend with them so she told him he had to cut back to every other weekend or else.

I'm thinking if you're not willing to put up with a man's children and welcome them into your life as if they were your own, don't marry him. Am I way off base here?

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Michelle - posted on 02/04/2010

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You know, my step dad and my mom got married when I was about 8. From that point on I decided to be Major Bitch of the Bitch Brigade to him. It went on like that until I was 17 when I moved in with my grandparents because my immature ass "couldn't handle him anymore."

I've learned a lot of things about life since then, and he and I have had a few heart to hearts since then where I've apologized for my behavior.

Ok I got a little sidetracked. The point is, no matter how "evil" I was to him, he never once lost his temper with me, never tried to tell my mom to spend less time with me, nothing. In fact, since the day he walked into my life he's been a better father to me than either of the other two men who "attempted" that role, and certainly a better father than he had to be or than I deserved given my treatment of him.

Step parenting is probably one of the most difficult responsibilities you could take on. I would seriously reconsider ANY relationship if it involved me being a step parent simply because of the responsibilities of all parties and the problems that can arise. However difficult it is though, the problem some people forget is that being a step parent is still being a step PARENT. Parenting is about loving and caring and teaching and guiding, whether or not your child is biologically yours.

Tawny - posted on 02/04/2010

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Christa you need to be a little more open minded. We all have different views and this is a debate group, you say you don't know why you keep trying with us... well you could try a little harder and see everyones elses views it is just not what you believe and think. And I am not saying your beliefs are wrong as in no one elses on here is either.

Krista - posted on 02/04/2010

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I AM a step-mom and I mirror your sentiments, Esther. My step-daughter was there before me. I knew very well that she would come first. I knew very well that sometimes MY life and MY plans would be put on hold for her. It's the choice I made when marrying my husband.
Luckily, I get along VERY well with her, but she does live far away. We do have to travel to see her. She never says thank you, but she shouldn't have to. Seeing her father is something that she's entitled to.
In my opinion, it would be EXTREMELY selfish of me to demand my husband stop seeing his child because of me. Kids should ALWAYS come first.

Erin - posted on 02/05/2010

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Whether a person possesses experience being a step-mother or step-child is really beside the point in these cases. It just comes down to basic common decency. There is NEVER an excuse for making a child pay for the mistakes of the adults around them.



I was a step-child and have been in a blended family since I was 10. I know it's not always easy and I know nobody is perfect. But as adults, we have the ability to get all the information, assess the situation and then make a decision. If we choose to enter into a relationship with someone with children it then becomes our responsibility to adjust and make it work. If we go ahead with a relationship and become a step-parent, we have ZERO right to then turn around and blame a child for the problems with family dynamic. I am not suggesting that a step-child should have free reign over a family, or that they shouldn't be held accountable for their behaviour, but resenting and blaming them for the tension between the adults (bio and steps) is not only unfair, it's incredibly selfish and mean.

[deleted account]

I am going to post my opinion before I read any other posts. I am doing this simply because I do feel so strongly on this issue. I am sorry if it's been said already, but here's my opinion. :)

I am a stepmom. We have our oldest (my sd) 90% of the time. I went into my relationship with my hubby knowing full well that he was a full time single parent (the birth mother was not around at all until she found out we were getting married). We had met on the internet and the fact that he had his daughter full time and was doing it on his own was very prominent on his profile, a fact that I gave him huge credit for. He has told me that before we met he met with a few woment that told him straight out they were not going to be "stuck" raising another woman's child, but they thought he was handsome, so they sent him a message. Needless to say, all those women were outta there after that. I was very up front with him and told him I wasn't sure if I would be comfortabel with it, but I would give it a try. After my first time meeting his daughter (after we had been dating a month and knew we clicked) I was hooked and in love with her. I treat her just the same as I treat my biological children (that my hubby and I have together) and I always introduce her as one of mine (with her permission of course). She sees her birth mother for 2 weeks every 3 months, and even that time isn't consistent as she lives over 2600 miles away from us. Our oldest calls me "Mom" and I am here for her full time. I do all the "mom" things for her - like helping with homework, getting her up and ready every day, volunteering in her classroom, making sure she bathes and brushes her teeth, etc. She truly is just like one of my own children and I love her just as much as I love my bio kids.

Saying all that, I do not understant those women who complain about their stepchild(ren). They should have known going into the relationship that the man had other children and they needed to accept that. If they do not accept their partner's children, then (in my opinion) they are not truly accepting their partner. I understand some resentment when the kids are not with them full time and then their partner wants to spend time with the kids when he has them, but they need to be happy that their partners are good enough men to WANT to spend time with their children. Most of those "evil stepmother" stories come from situations where the stepmother is denying her husband access to his children (not all, but in my opinion most). I think that is wrong and those men need to leave those women and take care of their children first.

Honestly, I also understand that some resentment some stepmoms have for their stepkids stems from issues with the biological mother. There was a time when I was WAY pregnant that I could not stand (for about a week) my oldest daugher's resemblance to her bio mom. It just pissed me off for some strange reason. Once I realized that my snippyness wasn't really because our daughter was doing something, but because I was overly emotional and having issues, I got over it. I do not hate my daughter's biological mother, but I do not like her either. I just don't understand how someone can leave their child and live so far away without calling every single day (our daughter's bio mom never calls and never answers when our daughter calls her). We have also had A LOT of stress from dealing with the bio mom. She never agrees to anything, therefore we have to go to court and mediation a lot, and she is always rude and trying to pick fights with my hubby and me. She also lies to our daughter constantly (or whenever she bothers to contact our daughter) and tells our daughter that everything is our fault. Of course our daughter is old enough now to understand her biomom is not always truthful (she's 7 and came to the conclusion on her own from observations she made), but it still hurts our daughter, and our family as well. It's stressful, but I DO NOT use it as an excuse to resent our daughter. She is a seperate person from her biomom (thank God!) and she should not be recieveing the flak for the issues and stress we go through with her biomom.

All in all, I believe that women who cannot accept their stepchildren are selfish and should not have married their husbands. I am not in any way saying a stepmom is required to love her stepchildren as she does her biological children, but she needs to accept them as a part of her life and make their time in her home as happy as possible. If she "can't stand" being around her stepkids then she needs to either (A) go somewhere else during visitation times (B) leave her husband (or he may do it to her...) or (C) learn to accept her stepkids and at least try to be nice and corteous when they are in her home. The kids came first after all, and I know that if my hubby EVER put me before his daughter I would be seriously dissapointed in him. She is always his first priority (as well as our two kids together) and that is how it should be. He is a wonderful father and THAT is what attracted me to him.

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It bothers me when this happens. A lot. I've never been a stepchild and never had stepchildren, but....



I know that IF I were ever to split from my husband or something happened to him and I got re-married, I would want the man I married to love my son and respect him. I would look specifically for someone who I could work with and who would work with me in order to help raise my son. And if he were ever to look for anyone else, I would hope he would do the same. Because if any of the above were to happen and I was on CoM one night and saw someone bitching about my son and how bad he was on an international forum, there would be some pretty awful shit going down (which also goes back to some earlier debates/conversations about this being a site that can be accessed by anyone who creates a profile, so being careful about divulging private information is a good idea-even if you think it, don't splatter it across the 'net.)



I realize that it can be very complicated and that sometimes the children act up as a result of their feelings about their parents no longer being together (whether it's because of the death of one or just a divorce) and a new person entering the picture. However, as others have said-ultimately you (general you) have to be the adult and let the child be the child. Even if you're frustrated (and we all get frustrated, even with our own, biological children, from time to time), it's not ok to act like a child when frustrated.

Erin - posted on 02/05/2010

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Ok I have deleted all comments that were off-topic and inflammatory. If anyone has any grievances with the way DM operates please deal with it privately with the moderators.

La - posted on 02/05/2010

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I'll put in spaces. You have to do it like this: < blockquote > Quoting Jo < /blockquote >.


Ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh ok thanks

Esther - posted on 02/05/2010

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I'll put in spaces. You have to do it like this: < blockquote > Quoting Jo < /blockquote >.

Just take out the space between < and blockquote at the beginning and at the end (so the are immediately adjacent to the word blockquote.

Krista - posted on 02/05/2010

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OH! I think I get it now!

I'm trying the thing. Thanks!

edit* I guess I didn't do it right :(

Krista - posted on 02/05/2010

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Laura, you have to take out the ( )'s and just keep this < / > .

Without the spaces between the backward slash and the half triangle thingy.....I don't know what those are called.

La - posted on 02/05/2010

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I'm trying the thing. Thanks!



edit* I guess I didn't do it right :(



edit#2* I tried again and still not getting it....technological idiot here

Isobel - posted on 02/05/2010

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I think though, like I said earlier...Holly had an easier time of it BECAUSE she did the homework...she took her time and really figured out whether or not she could do it. I think too many women (and men) fall in love with their partner and are blinded by that, they jump in head first and THEN realize how hard it is.

It is a thankless, exhausting job. Step children are OFTEN hateful, spiteful, and down right mean (I know I was)...but as has been said so many times on this thread, it's the adult's job to expect that, to be prepared for it, and to behave like an adult.

Michelle - posted on 02/04/2010

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Holly, congratulations on what a loving family you have. I just wanted to say that while we have been a little judgmental, and rightly so, of the group that Esther brought up, you, Holly, seem to have had a slightly easier time of it (not to belittle the troubles you've faced).



I feel like step parenting is probably much more difficult when the ex IS still involved and does the smaller, undermining things.... The battle you can't fight, you know?



Basically, like I said, I would probably take some heavy heavy consideration into taking on that kind of responsibility, no matter how much I loved someone. It's something I respect greatly in the people who do it and do it well, as you have, Jodi and Holly. Kudos!!!

Jodi - posted on 02/04/2010

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she always threw it in his face that he wasn't her father and he couldn't tell her what to do




Ah yes, that one. I've had that one. I have a standard response........no, you are right, I am not your parent. HOWEVER, I am an adult in this house, and as such have every right to tell you what to do while you are under this roof, just as your mum tells you what to do at her house. You can do whatever you like when you have your own house one day.



This was followed by a complaint to hubby, and hubby backed me up, so the kids stopped trying to pull that shit on me pretty quickly, LOL.



Once again, I truly believe it all comes down to yourself and your partner being 100% connected on the issues, and backing each other completely. I see so many instances where this doesn't happen. And that is why 60% of second marriages end in divorce - it is often to do with the strains of step-children. And I will admit, it takes an awful lot of patience, especially in the beginning.

Rosie - posted on 02/04/2010

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i think alot of it has to do with the other parent in the situation. if all 3 or 4 if the other one is remarried as well, aren't in unison with everything ffrom discipline to who get's the child and when, things are going to be very difficult. i know i had an easy transition with my step-dad, and i think alot of it had to do with the fact that my bio-dad was no longer in my life. my son and my husband were pretty easy as well because there is no other parent involved (his biodad is a deadbeat). it also has alot to do with age. i was 2 when my step-dad and mother got involved, and my sister was 4 or 5. while i know she sees him as more of a father than our bio-dad, she always threw it in his face that he wasn't her father and he couldn't tell her what to do, when she was a teenager and was doing stupid horrible things. i've always thought of my step-dad as my father and i am a huge daddy's girl. it takes a really special person to be a step parent and to do it successfully.

?? - posted on 02/04/2010

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Quoting Laura:
does anyone know when the glitch with replying with a quote will be fixed?


If you want too, you can type out the code yourself... just replace the ( ) with < > in this:

(blockquote) Don't put spaces inside the brackets either (/blockquote)

Then when you change the ( ) with < > you will have the quote :)


Hope this helps !!

?? - posted on 02/04/2010

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Quoting Jodi:
Step parenting will always be a nightmare if you and your partner cannot agree to be 100% together on issues.


Agreed. This is so true of ANY parenting. Having children PERIOD will be a nightmare if you and your partner can't agree to work together. And if it ever comes to step-parents being involved as well - it's up to ALL 3 or 4 parents to work together. It's not about mommy, daddy, step mommy or step daddy - it's about the child.

La - posted on 02/04/2010

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Quoting Michelle:
The bottom line for this conversations, at least for me, is that while this group that Esther saw is taking it a little too far IMHO, CoM is a place for venting, learning, and finding support. In my other groups some people are like "Oh let's not complain about our husbands" well...... normal people need to complain sometimes, and an online forum is a great place for that. However, calling your step kids evil and trying to take their parents away from them is wrong.

Agreed :) and on a side note does anyone know when the glitch with replying with a quote will be fixed?

Michelle - posted on 02/04/2010

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Quoting Laura: I agree. The problem is that it can be hard to teach and guide them as if they were your own when you do not have the authority to do this by the biological parents.

Oh I understand completely what you're saying. I think that while there is a responsibility to ensure fair treatment on the part of the step parent, there is also a huge responsibility that gets ignored sometimes on the part of the biological parent to make sure their kids know that their new husband or wife is just as much an authority figure as they are. My mother did a very good job with that, and I think that's one reason that they are still together. I think that a lot of times step parents feel undermined by not just their step kids but also by their spouses as well.

Quoting Jodi: We didn't just marry one another, we "married" as a family. Relationships with your children need to be worked on, just as a marriage needs to be worked on. Neither of those relationships is easy.

This is how it should be. My parents did this as well. When you marry someone with kids, you take on the responsibility, and when you marry someone when you have kids you take on the responsibility as well.

I think in this discussion we're all agreed, and we're all saying the same things.

The bottom line for this conversations, at least for me, is that while this group that Esther saw is taking it a little too far IMHO, CoM is a place for venting, learning, and finding support. In my other groups some people are like "Oh let's not complain about our husbands" well...... normal people need to complain sometimes, and an online forum is a great place for that. However, calling your step kids evil and trying to take their parents away from them is wrong.

Krista - posted on 02/04/2010

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"Step parenting will always be a nightmare if you and your partner cannot agree to be 100% together on issues."

And that's exactly it. Oftentimes you see cases where the biological parent feels bad for the divorce, and lets the child run roughshod over the entire family. The stepparent (especially if he or she has kids who live in the same house) doesn't particularly enjoy being terrorized (or having their kid be terrorized), but when the stepparent approaches the parent, nothing gets done, or the parent won't even acknowledge that there's a problem.

Whether you're two biological parents, two adoptive parents, or a parent and step-parent, you're in for a hell of a hard time if you don't present a united front.

Dana - posted on 02/04/2010

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Well, damn I missed all the fun! Anyhow....Thank you, Tawny and Mary. That was perfectly put.

Jodi - posted on 02/04/2010

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The problem is that it can be hard to teach and guide them as if they were your own when you do not have the authority to do this by the biological parents.


But see, this is the mistake many people make. You and your partner need to be a TEAM. If you are a team, and agree on the house rules, and how your family will operate, etc, then you HAVE your partner's authority, and also his respect, about these matters. For instance, I do not deal directly with the mothers of my step children, but I have my husband's 100% backing. I am often the disciplinarian, especially if my husband has to work, but he is totally on board with the rules and how it is dealt with. Step parenting will always be a nightmare if you and your partner cannot agree to be 100% together on issues.

Jodi - posted on 02/04/2010

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OK, without reading any other responses yet (I will be interested to read them, LOL), I am going to say that I agree 100% with Esther. I also don't understand some of the attitudes. I am a member of a step mother group, and I contribute very rarely because half the time I feel like screaming at them.......maybe I should!!!

I am a step-mother to my husband's 2 children and have been involved in their lives now for 8 years. They are now 17 and 10, and we have been through some really touch times. Being a step parent is difficult. In some ways it is so much more difficult than having your own children. Early in my relationship with my husband, we did have some ups and downs about the children (I had my son then too, so there were so many different priorities). It did take us time to get things into the settled routine we have now, as you can imagine. Some of the things we have been through include custody and child support cases in court, my step son losing a baby brother to a heart defect, my step daughter's [delightful] teenage years, my ex's death threats to my husband and his children, my step son lying to his mother about me spanking him (and the resulting shit that happened there) and the list goes on. And then we brought another child into the family as well. Yet another added complexity.

However, having said all of that, I embraced my stepchildren as I would my own children. They are actually really good kids, but they are just kids. They make mistakes too. I will say that I do not feel the same for my step children that I do for my own children, but I think that is ok, and it is natural. However, I TREAT the children in the same way. My husband and I worked very hard to negotiate the household rules so they are the same for ALL the kids (obviously age appropriately). No one gets treated differently because of who their parents are.

We also included the kids in our wedding ceremony, and hubby and I both made promises to one another's kids that we would love them as our own. As with our marriage vows to one another, we did not make those promises lightly, and we do take them seriously every single day. We didn't just marry one another, we "married" as a family. Relationships with your children need to be worked on, just as a marriage needs to be worked on. Neither of those relationships is easy.

So, yes, Esther, you are absolutely correct, in my opinion, in saying "I'm thinking if you're not willing to put up with a man's children and welcome them into your life as if they were your own, don't marry him".

As far as I am concerned, my step-children, even though they don't live with us and only visit alternate weekends and half school holidays, are a part of MY family too, and should be viewed as such.

La - posted on 02/04/2010

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Quoting Michelle:Parenting is about loving and caring and teaching and guiding, whether or not your child is biologically yours.

I agree. The problem is that it can be hard to teach and guide them as if they were your own when you do not have the authority to do this by the biological parents.

Krista - posted on 02/04/2010

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I'm sure that being a stepparent is not easy, even under the best of circumstances. And if the stepchild is particularly difficult, and the biological parent has their head in the sand, it can make things very, very difficult for the stepparent. You see this often in cases where it's a stepmother and father relationship -- the father often shuffles off a lot of the parenting responsibility to the stepmother, but doesn't give her any authority. It's strained many a marriage.

However, if it's just a case of the stepmother resenting the time spent with the stepchild, then no, that's not right. If you want to be with a man who has kids, you should go into it under the assumption that the child will be with you full-time, because that very well COULD happen.

Mary - posted on 02/04/2010

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Christa, to the best of my knowledge, you and I have never had an issue. I was happy to see you back (and hope all is going well w/you). So please take that into consideration when I say the following:

I understand that this is an emotionally sensitive topic for you, and I agree that there are 2 sides to EVERY story, but you did kind of jump in here and find fault with everyone's opinions in a bit of a condescending way. Perhaps this was not your intent, but I think that was how you first post came across. I am sure that being a step-parent is exceedingly difficult. I myself have no experience with it, so I can only project my optimistic view of how I *might* behave, or at least would hope to be. I'm sure the reality can be vastly different. It does not mean my opinion is invalid...just not based on the experience that you've obviously struggled with. And...if we all agreed here, it wouldn't make for much of a debate!

Sara - posted on 02/04/2010

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I'm sorry, Christa, but when you come in here after being gone for months and then start off with "I peek in here every now and again to see if anything has changed that would make me want to come back and sadly it never does" and try to tell us how judgemental and ridiculous we're all being, that's supposed to NOT make us defensive? No one said your point wasn't valid, perhaps it was the delivery...

Christa - posted on 02/04/2010

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I don't know why I keep trying this with you ladies. It's always like talking to a wall. I'm sorry I tried.

Amie - posted on 02/04/2010

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That still gives no right to the STEP parent to intervene. The most they should do is take it to the parents to handle. IF one of the parents is not involved in the child(ren) life then they can help handle it.



In MY case my husband is the only "Dad" they have since my ex has walked away from the kids because I married my husband. (along with many other reasons, he wasn't all there to help to begin with anyway) He helps in all situations because he is a PRIMARY parent in their lives.



You don't cut off a child from their family or parents because there's an issue. You help find a solution. This is not rocket science.

Esther - posted on 02/04/2010

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I did not name any names (contrary to what is sometimes done on other forums) and I did not mention the title of this particular forum. I gave examples of the type of complaints these women had and asked if people thought this was OK. I don't think it's OK. Nowhere do they mention the step children threatening their kids. The complaints I specifically singled out all had to do with what an imposition on their lives and their time with their husbands they find these kids to be. I don't need a background story to know that that is simply not right.

Cassie - posted on 02/04/2010

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I think the point is that Esther was discussing step-mothers who demanded that the father stop spending time with his children because the step-mother wanted alone time with her husband. This is WRONG no matter how you look at it.

Of course, there are always cases where step-children or step-parents have issues with one another that need to be addressed when safety or over-all well-being are involved but just because you(general you) want alone time does not mean that you can demand that a father not see his children. That is the point of this debate.

Sarah - posted on 02/04/2010

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In fairness, Esther hasn't mentioned the groups name, or specific people in it.
I'd say it was pretty general really.
:)

Christa - posted on 02/04/2010

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I don't know exactly what you read over there so I can't comment about specifics. But let me ask you this. If your step child was threatening YOUR child (physically, emotionally etc) how would you feel then? If that relationship was causing more harm than good (to parent or child), how would you feel then? This is why I say you can't sit here and judge these women and call them terrible things when you don't know their whole story. Are there some women over there who are just selfish and bad parents, probably but you don't know that. This is a very touchy subject for me, because people are so judgmental about it. Even my own family will say things that piss me off because they have no idea. I know this is a debating group but perhaps you should stick to topics that aren't direct attacks on other members of this site. You could have talked about this topic in generalities and not reference another group on here.

?? - posted on 02/04/2010

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Oh thank GOD Christa showed up and told us how to behave appropriately, we all know she is a STELLAR example of how to NOT be a judgemental bitch. *sarcasm*

There's always a back story to every situation, Cap'n Obvious is out in full force these days I guess. I suppose we should be thankful that we have the righteous around to remind us of this, otherwise we would NEVER know these obvious factors, regardless of whether we live the situation ourselves...

Those same women that bitch about stepchildren and how EVIL they are, are also the first women to bitch if a father doesn't step up and take responsibility. Catch 22 the penis can not win. The children need to be nurtured and respected, the women need to be understanding and think about the 'whole picture' and daddy had better put his children first - a man should rather be known as a man who tried to be a good father rather than a man who put some wretched bitch before his children.

Cassie - posted on 02/04/2010

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Nice work Sarah! I agree that everyone just needs to step back and let their personal opinions towards one another go for this discussion.

I agree with Sarah. It is one thing to just need to vent I know we all do it in many of the forums we are a part of. If they are able to just vent out their emotions so that they aren't taking things out on their step-children then that is one thing.

But... a step-parent does not have the right to demand that the father or mother spend less time with his or her children. If a person knowingly enters a relationship where children are involved, there is never a question of where the parents priorities should lie. Children have no control over the situation and are the innocents in it all no matter what the situation.

Sarah - posted on 02/04/2010

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Annnnnnnnnnnnnd.......everyone breathe!

While i see that Christa is pointing out that perhaps the group is for venting, and therefore maybe some things are coming across a little more heated and nasty than they really are, i also think that the things Esther mentioned about making the parents spend less time with the kids, are inexcusable.
Even if you are venting, it should never lead a woman (or man) to try to demand a parent sees less of their kids.
Every day rants and raves, i get, but that i don't.

Everyone calm now? Good! ;)

Sara - posted on 02/04/2010

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We're all entitled to our opinions. I would venture to say that you have no idea what has happened in any one of our lives to assume that we don't have any frame of reference for what we're talking about. There's no need to be so nasty.

Amie - posted on 02/04/2010

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Christa, how about you keep your judgmental opinion to yourself. We all know full well life happens. We all know full well there's a back story.



It doesn't give ANY person a right to demand that a father spend less time with their child because "it's hard", "we have no time alone", etc. Those are BS excuses. The child comes first, always. THEY are the ones suffering, not us.



My husband understands this. He treats ALL the kids the exact same. He loves them all the exact same and if he ever heard someone talk badly about them (as we've had to experience recently) he would tear their head off (as he did).



It's about being the adult. If someone were so vehemently opposed to helping raising a child and all the turmoil that entails then you should stay away from people with children. It IS that simple. Life happens, exactly, gives NO person the right to display any of the behavior Esther posted about.

Esther - posted on 02/04/2010

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It's a debating forum Christa. It's about sharing your opinions. I know that's hard for you, but it is what it is and most of us seem to be able to handle it.



That being said, none of these women were complaining about the ex-wives. They were all only complaining about the kids. As a matter of fact, the name of the forum included the word "evil" to describe the children. And they are acting on those feelings too as illustrated by the woman who told her husband he can only have his daughter over every other weekend as oposed to every weekend. You can call me judgemental all you want, but I say that's just plain wrong. I might even say "evil".

Christa - posted on 02/04/2010

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Ok most of you know me and I peek in here every now and again to see if anything has changed that would make me want to come back and sadly it never does. But I had to say something about this. I can't believe how judgmental you are all being. Unless you know these people's entire situations and have lived them yourselves you have NO place to judge. Also keep in mind that group is a forum for step moms to come and vent frustrations with others who know how they are feeling. Just because someone writes that they can't stand their step kids or something else DOESN'T mean they are treating their kids like Cinderella. Maybe they use this forum as an outlet so those feelings don’t affect the treatment of the children. They are looking for support not judgment.

I have two step kids and it is harder than I ever would have imagined. They are good kids, but they live 12 hours away because their B***H of a mother wants to make it as hard for them to have a relationship with their father as possible. She makes all of our lives a living hell because she is still mad at my husband for divorcing her. With each new change in life there are more challenges that you'd have never expected. When I met my husband I knew he had kids, and they were great and we all got along and I saw NOTHING that would cause them to be a problem. But then life happens. I'm not going to get into my personal situation with all of you, but these women are going through things you'd never dreamed. It's easy to sit there and play “monday morning quarterback” but until you are in their position why don't you keep your judgmental opinions to yourself.

Amie - posted on 02/04/2010

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Not at all Esther. I would be seriously pissed if my ex (considering he ever takes an active role in the kids lives) had a person like that around the kids.

It's not about them, it's about the kids. You can't handle that, you should have figured that out before you married him. These kinds of children have a hard enough time being shuffled around to see their parents, they don't need a spiteful witch around to compound the problems.

Dana - posted on 02/04/2010

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Okay are you talking about issues with the ex or step children. I think you're speaking too broadly to debate this issue. Do you have examples?

La - posted on 02/04/2010

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There will always be situations that arise that you can't possibly anticipate because you cannot control the actions of the other parties involved. You cannot control the actions of the ex...you can only account for your own personal reactions.

Dana - posted on 02/04/2010

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I think you can help it if you have negative feelings that you didn't anticipate. No matter what, you are the adult, as long as you are a mature and intelligent person you should be able to deal with the situation. I think if situations arise that you didn't anticipate then maybe you (not you,a general you) rushed into a marriage with someone before knowing everything and the family situation.

La - posted on 02/04/2010

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Quoting Dana: I actually have been a step-parent, to a little girl for 3 yrs prior to my marriage with my husband. So what exactly are you saying Laura? Are you excusing their behavior or your own?

I didn't say anything about condoning anyone's behavior. All I said was that it's not easy and unless you are in that position you don't know how you will feel (whether it's right or wrong). No one ever truly knows how they will react in any situation until they experience it themselves. I feel that many step parents get into situations expecting one thing and getting another. Whether it is right or wrong, they may have negative feelings that they didn't anticipate...I'm not excusing it if they act upon those feelings, but they can't help that they feel a certain way on the inside. I am a step child and a step parent. I know what it is like from both ends and I have seen many unexpected issues pop up from many different sources. Yes, as an adult you must make a choice about how you choose to react to each issue and should therefore act like an adult, but I can see why all the people involved get frustrated in their own ways. And yes, a lot of drama tends to come from the other adults (the ex) in the situation not from the kids themselves.

Sara - posted on 02/04/2010

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I had a friend growing up who's stepmother made Cinderella's look like a nice lady. She was hateful, mean and verbally abusive to my friend and her dad didn't do anything about it (except divorce her the year after my friend moved out for college). I, for the life of me, do not understand how grown ass people can treat children with so much contempt and how the natural parent can stand by and watch it happen. I have made Paul promise me that if there is ever a stepmom he would not let her treat Rowan like crap!

Anyway, I woudl think that if you love the man you could learn to love his kids. I think women who feel that way about their stepchildren are immature and selfish. You didn't just marry him, you married his kids too.

Isobel - posted on 02/04/2010

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I've been a step parent, a step child, and now I am the mother to two children with a step father.



First of all, my step father and I just recently apologized TO EACH OTHER because we were both assholes when I was a teenager. I said I'm sorry I went out of my way to make your life a living hell...and he said he was sorry for not understanding that that's what teenagers to ;P



Second, I think that if you are having those kinds of issues with your step children you have rushed into your relationship. Personally, I would never marry a man whose children weren't ready and in full agreement. Second, I would never marry a man who didn't love my children like they were his own.



I have known my boyfriend since I was 18, and I still didn't introduce him to my kids till we were dating for 8 or 10 months...and that was as a friend who helped us out sometimes and gave us rides...another six months before he slept over (on the couch)...and longer still before they saw physical affection.



I might have taken a long time to make sure they were OK with it...but it was worth it.

Dana - posted on 02/04/2010

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I actually have been a step-parent, to a little girl for 3 yrs prior to my marriage with my husband. So what exactly are you saying Laura? Are you excusing their behavior or your own?

Esther - posted on 02/04/2010

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I should add that the friend who has the two kids of her own has a step son with very serious developmental issues, in large part because of the ex-wife (as confirmed by the ex-wife's therapist and the child's multiple therapists). He's not easy to parent. And she works full-time, has a husband who is frequently away, and has two small children of her own. But she sucks it up and makes sure that Ethan gets what he needs. He is with them about 4 days a week and on many vacations. She is the one to go to PTA meetings. She is the one to help him with his school projects. She is the one running around town making sure all the kids end up in their respective schools on time. She is the one who makes the valentine's day gifts for him to bring to school, etc. etc. etc. I do understand, although not from first-hand experience, that it's a challenge. But isn't that what you chose? If an adult, who chose to get into the situation, can't be expected to handle it with grace as much as possible, how can you expect that from a child who had no say in the matter?

Esther - posted on 02/04/2010

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As I stated in my second post I have two friends who are stepmoms. One has 2 kids of her own with her new husband and the other only has the stepson. So I've heard some of their drama. Their drama is not usually with the kids though. It's with the ex. But they work very very hard to make sure that whatever drama there is with the ex is never taken out on the child and that the child receives the same kind of warm, welcoming, loving, nurturing environment that they would want their own kids to have.

La - posted on 02/04/2010

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Esther- in your OP you stated "I have no experience with stepchildren (thank god)." Is that an indicator that you already understand some of the inherent drama that comes with having blended families?

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