Dealing with the Mother

Kristen - posted on 09/24/2015 ( 5 moms have responded )




I need some advice. My boyfriend and i have been together almost 8 years. And i have been in his son's life since he was about 5 and he's almost 10 now. The reason why i've only known him since he was 5 was because my boyfriends's Ex did not allow him to see him once she knew we got together. Saying that it has been a battle is an understatment. She has been bullying me non stop for the past couple years. I have tried to remain calm and not answer back to any mean texts she's sent me. But Even though shes married and has a baby with her husband she is fixated on trying to ruin our lives. ( she is a step parent to her husbands son ) and also dealing with his ex from what i've heard. I do not push any mother figure onto her son or act as one. We only get to see him every 2nd weekend so we do lots of fun things together and he tells me he loves me and of course i love him, i treat him as if he were my own. Recently, i attended a drop in meet the teacher with my boyfriend which she had forwarded to him in an email and he told her he was attending as well. She did not show up, when he told her we went together she lost it and started calling me names. Not sure if she feels threatned by me but i am NOT trying to overstep my boundaries. She thinks i am trying to push her out of the picture, but i have never assumed any role other than just being myself. Need some opinions. Her son has told her directly that he wants to spend more time with his dad but told my boyfriend she doesnt have to let him see him more. she is only hurting her son.. what should i do?


Raye - posted on 09/25/2015




As far as how you should deal with the mother, try not to have much interaction with her at all. If she sends hateful texts, ignore them unless there's something about the child that needs to be discussed, then be as civil to her as possible. Don't let her bait you into saying something she could use against you later.

It's going to suck a lot for you, because, even though you are a mother figure and do a lot of the stuff moms do, you will get very little recognition. Your role regarding your BF kid is this:
* Be united with your BF on how he wants his child to be raised.
* Speak with him privately if there's something you don't agree with, never contradict him in front of the child unless it would otherwise cause a dangerous situation.
* Love and support your BF and the child to the best of your ability.
* Try not to step on the bio-parent's toes. There are special things in kids lives that should be reserved for the natural parents (going to parent-teacher conferences, doctor appointments, etc.). They are the ones legally responsible for the kids and making the big decisions that affect the child's life.

In a perfect world, step-parents (and those acting in that role) would be treated as equals (especially those that have been in it for the long haul). But it doesn't always happen that way, and you need to try to accept that. Yes, you have valuable input and should be able to discuss your opinions with their father. But the mother didn't choose you to be in her kids' life, and she doesn't have to listen to your wisdom or include you in activities. Yes, everyone should be doing what's best for the child. But it's not a perfect world, and people's feelings do get hurt.

What helps me "step-back" and not take things so personally as the step-parent is remembering this: Not My Circus, Not My Monkeys. You actually have a luxury not being the bio-parent... you can sometimes step-back and actually reduce your stress in a particular situation. You're one of the ring-leaders to help direct a few of the acts, but there are two bigger ringleaders in this circus (the natural mother and father), and you really should not try to control the whole show. Your BF and his ex may make mistakes that might have been avoided if someone had listened to you (I've been there plenty!), but it's their kids. So you have to let them do the best they can. Help train the monkeys. Love them. Care for them. But at the end of the day... it's not your circus, not your monkeys. Let things go. Breathe. Sit back and watch the show.

As for the issues of her keeping the child from the father, I will repost my response to you on 8/25/15:

Is there a custody/visitation agreement (through the courts) already in place between the parents? If not, then your BF can initiate court proceedings to get partial custody or more visitation. If there is something already in place, then he could petition to have it changed. So, actually the mother doesn't have complete say on whether he's allowed more time with his son. She may not want to "let" him, but the child has rights to both parents and both parents have rights to the child.

Now, that being said, it seems like the mother is going to be pissed off if this goes to court. So, just be ready for that. It would be better to work with her on getting her consent for increased visitation, and then make it official through the court. But sometimes you have to do it the harder way.

I will say that she probably thought she had good reason to keep her son away from you and the father for a while in the beginning of your relationship, so the son wouldn't get attached to you if the relationship didn't work out. There's sound reasoning there, but it's really not her call to do that. And it could be considered "parental alienation" that she keeps refusing time with the father. If your BF has e-mails, text messages, etc. where he can prove she kept him away, that would probably increase his odds to get more visitation or partial custody. Also, the child may be old enough for the court to take his opinion into consideration when making a ruling.

In my opinion, the child is usually better off having quality time with both parents, unless there's abuse or other reason for the mom to keep the son away. If not, then it's seems like the mother is being petty and putting her wants before the needs of the child.


View replies by

Jodi - posted on 09/25/2015




"i am not asking to be treated equally, i just want respect. She needs to wake up and realize that i am not going anywhere and the best thing for their son right now is to see that we can all get along as he does sense the confrontation between his parents."

I think this is where your issue is. You want respect. Unfortunately, you can't demand to receive respect from her. You clearly are not going to get it (it's been 5 years and she still treats you like this, so what makes you think you can change it now/) and if she doesn't want to give you respect, you can't force the issue. You can never force someone to respect you. The only behaviour you can control is yours. As long as you continue to want her to behave in a certain way toward you, you are going to feel frustration. You need to stop expecting respect from her and accept she doesn't like you. Just do what YOU need to do.

The thing is, the mother doesn't legally have to allow her son to be with you guys more than every 2nd weekend, because that's what the court orders say. If your boyfriend wants more, he is going to have to do it through legal channels. Sure, it would be nice if she just allowed the boy to come more often, but the fact is, she doesn't have to.

Kristen - posted on 09/25/2015




Yes, i have always taken the high road and never have i responded to her immature text messages, which is a ploy to stir the pot between my boyfriend and I. She baits herself by putting everything in a text. We do have a court order that states we get him every 2nd weekend so legally she doesnt have to allow him more time but it's only hurting their son as he's the one suffering. We are in the midst of planning to go back to court, as that is the only way it gets settled.
All of the above, i have done over the last 6-7 years, i was the one who stood up and helped him get to where he is today seeing his son. She ( the ex ) actually recocnized that at one point but then blames me for keeping them apart. I was at such a young age i didnt know what was going on between them, as he was seeing his son up until she found out we were dating. She selfishly kept her son away from his father for no reason at all there was nothing to hold against him, he called on birthdays and she wouldnt let him.
The issue is that she is a hibercrit, her new husband acts as the father in their relationship to his son, and at one point was being called " dad ". If my boyfriend asks me to be involved and attend things such as meet the teacher then i will support him, of course i would not attend any other appointments such as doctor etc. unless i was asked to do so. The Father isnt even allowed to do that she restricts him to nothing.

i am not asking to be treated equally, i just want respect. She needs to wake up and realize that i am not going anywhere and the best thing for their son right now is to see that we can all get along as he does sense the confrontation between his parents. I have yet to even meet her for longer that 5 minutes. Last year i attended a few hockey games which she did not attend and she lost it, i was going to support the team and her son, but she lost it on my boyfriend. I'm by no means saying she is a bad mother, but when your son says he wants you to come to more games and do more stuff with him, thats a cry out and she blames it on the fact she has another child.
No, the mother didnt choose for me to be in her life, but he didnt choose for someone else to try to step in as his father. We all have to make the best of the situation and move on from the past. It's not like i came out of no where we have been together 8 years and shes had been with her now husband less than a year before he started coming around and calling himself " dad ". There's a double standard.

As much as she says she doesnt want their son in the middle she is pushing him there. He gets upset when he has to leave our place on the weekends, he spends the majority of his week/weekend at her parents who assume the role of almost the parents as they are doing all the driving around getting him everywhere because she wont let his father do anything becase shes punishing him for the past.
She will only allow us to do things when it's convienant for her, so she has all the control. I think, even though they have so much hate for eachother, she still loves him and doesn't want us to be happy. She focus's so much energy on trying to hurt us then focusing on the child, who just wants to see his dad more.
I completly understand and level with her, i'm the other woman in her son's life, but hopefully one day she will come to terms that i only have his best interest at heart. Which i am sure she feels the same way in her situation with her husband and his ex.
i know as he gets older though he will start to make his own decisions for himself and hopefully things will settle down between us all.

thank you!

♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 09/24/2015




What are his visitation and custody orders? If there are none, he needs to petition the courts to get some.

Dove - posted on 09/24/2015




The father should get a court order for visitation and you should block the mother out of your life unless it directly involves the child. If she contacts you... ignore her.

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