New Step-mom and Mother In Law undermines my decisions

Amber - posted on 03/15/2013 ( 3 moms have responded )




I have been married for about 7 months. My husband travels for work and has full custody of his 13 year old son. My MIL has raised him, but now that we are married we have him full time. My husband was working a local job, but is now back to traveling.

My stepson is out of control! My MIL claims he has all these diagnosis and he has been on all kinds of meds. My husband and I believe that my MIL tried to use meds to deal with his behavior. He is currently off all meds and acts no different.

He is very angry, violent, rude, disrespectful, careless, and acts like he is entitled to everything. In the beginning I really was sad that he was like that and thought there was something wrong, but now after dealing with him and my MIL it is clear he chooses to act the way he does because he has NEVER been told NO or disciplined for anything.

My husband doesn't know what to do with him because he has never had to parent and my MIL doesn't parent so it is all up to me now and he really doesn't like having rules. He has been in trouble at school for physical altercations which at that point I have put strict rules on his tv/movie and video game watching. He has never had any boundaries. He did and got what he wanted when he wanted because no one wanted to deal with him.

We have started family counseling and getting help to deal with his anger. He claims he wanted a punching bag and I told him no that was not an option because he is violent and he needs to channel his anger in another way. Well my MIL bought him a punching bag and brought it to our house and told us to leave it in the house and to assemble it. I was furious! I told her we said no and that she needed to return it. Her response was that now the kid was mad and that no one told her that we said he couldn't have one. BUT she never asked. He told her that we would not buy him one and she told him she would. I think she needs to ask us before buying stuff like that.

Another example was at Christmas he wanted a PlayStation. Well he was getting in trouble at school and home constantly before Christmas that my husband and I decided we would not be getting him a playstation. We told him that because of his behavior we would not get him one. We would buy him Christmas gifts but not a PlayStation. We told my MIL She texted my husband on Christmas Eve telling him how wrong it was that we were not getting him a PlayStation and how that isn't right to not make him happy on Christmas because of his behavior. My husband told her " He is out of control and we are not rewarding bad behavior he is not getting one" She then calls at 3:00 Christmas eve to tell us that she bought him one and it can stay at her house. I WAS FURIOUS!! Guess what?! Four days later she sent it home to our house.

Our Family Dynamics are strange, but I was wondering is there anyone else out there with dynamics similar?


Dove - posted on 03/15/2013




It sounds like this woman has been raising him for 13 years... unless bio mom was in the picture earlier. It sounds like you all are going to need more time to adjust to these changes. 13 years will not be undone overnight... if ever.

Your husband needs to step up and be the father he should've started being 13 years ago. It is not right to put this all on you and although I do understand you are trying to do a good thing here.... I don't blame the kid and grandma for rebelling against it.

I do think the punching bag would have been a good idea though. It's channeling his anger onto an OBJECT instead of a person. That's actually a very good thing.

That's all I've got from reading what you've posted. Sorry I don't have any personal perspective from going through something like this.


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Charity - posted on 09/24/2016




Hi Amber, I've searched for moms like me! I know EXACTLY how you feel. My stepson is 8. I came around when he was 2 after BM had "abandoned" (really my MIL forced her out after my hubby and her broke up) and my MIL was raising him for 2 years. She's crazy! She's involved in every aspect of our life, acts like my sons mother (which is INSANE because I do ALL the parenting) and she undermines me comstantly. I used to be close to her, but I've pushed her away because now we have our "own" baby and she doesn't treat our kids the same. She seems to think she has to compensate for my stepsons mother not being around (maybe she feels guilty)?

Anyway. Just wanted you to know I'm in the same situation and it eats at me every day!

~♥Little Miss - posted on 03/15/2013




I agree with much of what Dove has said. In fact I came in here specifically to post about the punching back. It is actually a good way for him to get out his physical aggression, especially when he does not get his way.

If your husband has full custody, that is exactly what it should be. Him having full custody and in charge of being a parent, not him tossing him off on his mother. BUT since she has been put in that position for 13 years, can you really blame her for still feeling like she has a say? I feel family counseling should actually be including her so you all can figure out how to communicate when it comes to this boy. You all need to be on the same page.

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