How do you stay married in a blended family?

Allie - posted on 05/22/2014 ( no moms have responded yet )

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I have a very long story that I wont tell here but I need help. In a nutshell I feel like leaving my husband anytime there are issues with his ex and their two kids.

I found out recently that 70% of blended families end in divorce. I can understand after I see the hell that a couple has to go through when there is third bitter person controlling situations in your life. My husband's ex is the custodial parent. Since day one it has been a battle between me and him because I hate how he handles her and the situation. He used to let her say anything and schedule everything. After five years he has gotten better at that. However, it's to late. Their oldest child is now 14 and has been basically running the show since 11. His ex will tell their daughter that she has a choice on what she wants to do (be with friends or see dad) and that she (the child) will have to talk to dad about it.
What ends up happening is dad becomes the bad guy because he is telling the kid no and she has to spend time with us while mom is the good guy saying yes. The child doesn't realize that mom has now put her in the position of being the parent and figuring out visitations. I has taken my husband three years to see the repercussions of his ex's actions and to finally try and put a stop to it. The 14 year old is acting like a 14 year old, selfish and demanding. Problem is he has let it go on so long she is very disrespectful and talks just like her mom. I blame my husband. I have been married for four years and with him for seven. I have been in these kid's life for more than half of it but it still feels like I'm new. Being a step parent is so much harder than being a parent. I am supposed to love these kids...but not to much. Treat them like my own....but if I do I'm the bad guy in mommies eyes and if I don't...I'm the bad guy in mommies eyes. I don't need her approval, I guess I would like some appreciation though. With the many many stories I could share about how manipulating and vindictive this woman is you may understand how I have grown such hatred. I can't take it out on her so I take it out on my husband. HOW CAN I STOP FEELING THIS HATE!! I don't like disliking my husband. We are perfect in nearly every other aspect. I have a daughter and we have had two more together. We make each other laugh and are still very attracted to each other. But all of that doesn't stop me from thinking "I want out of here" when the ex and visitation time comes. If it were just the kid, I would be ok, it's the addition of this a..hole lady that dramatizes it all. I have not handled things very well and with every new dramatic event I get closer to my "I'm done" line.
Help, tell me some magic words that will take the hate away and allow me to enjoy myself at the HS reunion of my husbands in a couple of weeks where she will be. She even made a big deal out of that. How can I go and make it through without punching her dead in the face? How does a person act like all is fine when my anxiety is through the roof? Going to this reunion, being in close proximity with this person and having to share the kids that day...it's to much for me. How do I get through it?

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