My son and my husband can not get along.

Brandy - posted on 07/14/2009 ( 6 moms have responded )




I have 2 kids by a previous marriage. I remarried 1 1/2 years ago to a man who my son thought hung the moon. Since the marriage, though, things have really gone down hill. My son back talks him all the time, he is rude, he won't make eye contact. My husband was raised by a military man who was very strict. So, when he says something, he means it and wants it done right then. My son takes forever to get things done. He is currently going to a family therapist who says that I should be the disciplinarian so his stepdad will not be put in the position of bad guy. I am trying to do this, but when I am not at home, they challenge each other. I have come home to them having word war several times and I have seen them almost come to blows. I am really at a loss, does anyone have advice, I feel that even though my son likes his therapist, she may not be leading me in the right direction. Shouldn't I expect my son to be respectful to adults? My boy is 14 1/2 y/o and my husband is 33.


Brandy - posted on 07/22/2009




Thanks for the advice. We had our first group meeting with the therapist. I think it went well. Since the entry, my hubby has been really putting forth the effort. The therapist said for me to be the mediator and let them hash it out through me. She said she is going to be the parent police and that we all would be answering for our behavior. I

like her tactic. She made both the guys that they would be answering for their own behaviors. We shall see what happens.

Leigh - posted on 07/14/2009




Men that don't have their own biological children have no idea how to parent. Just because you married the man doesn't make him an instant 'Dad'. Your therapist is right on target. Why should your son take 'orders', from your husband? Because you are married to him, because he's older than your son? Look at this from your son's point of view? What is it? Just because your husband was raised by a military man, doesn't mean that his 'parenting' is the right way. That would shit me if I was your son to be told to do something, because this MAN tells me to do it NOW. I would push back too. Brandy, my mother used to marry men (she was a serial bride) who used to then think that just because they were in the house they could tell me when, how, who do to things with, & they'd only been around for 5 minutes, needless to say there were many, many occassions of war of the words, because my mother always took 'her husbands' sides. It is going to take years for your son to adjust, in the meantime you need to realise that any problems he has with his 'step dad', are yours to sort out, you bought him into the equation. Keep going with the therapy, as least your son has someone there he can confide in.

Carrie - posted on 08/30/2010




I'm not sure how to help you with this but I can feel your frustration. My son and husband are biologically linked and they don't get along either.
What you did post seems typical though. My brother was the same way with our step dad. My mom's been married to our step dad for 16 yrs now and although my brother and step dad still don't see eye to eye it's all over my mom's affection & attention.

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It's a nice idea to think the family is "complete" again when you remarry, but it doesn't work like that. While it seems you may be figuring this out in therapy, my suggestion would have been that your husband needs to step out of "Dad" role and just be an "Adult", period. And your son should respect adults. period.

But "respect" doesn't neccesarily come in the form of "obedience" all the time, respect could be just the ability to communicate, or allowing the other person to communicate; they both sound like they can use some help communicating. Sounds like your husband could be under pressure to be obeyed like a father, and your son is under pressure to take orders from someone he isn't close to. (Among other issues, because you can only touch so briefly without a history there).

I have a similar dynamic. I just asked my husband to be responsible the way any adult would be around a child, and not to worry about the "dad" role, that would come naturally as he became established in as a "care-taker" at first. It seemed to have worked out, though my son was younger when he came into the picture. With your boy on the cusp of his own adulthood, you're probably doing exactly what you should be doing. good luck.

Rebecca - posted on 07/27/2009




i totally agree your husband is going to be the new person to your son and i have seen that 1st hand for im divorced and have a boyfriend and he told my kids by no means is he stepping in as dad for they have a father ... but he is there for them as a friend and my 2 youngest ones? they go to therepy where as for my 15 yr old boy dont have nothing to do with his father what so ever.... and all tho the bio dad doesnt have anything to do with his son? my boy friend does and i have seen the worse and the best on both sides.... therepy can only help has helped my youngest too.


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Lakeisha - posted on 07/17/2009




I feel your pain, I am experiencing the same thing. My husband is 43 and like I told him at some point you have to be the adult. I agree with Leigh men that dont have kids have no idea how to parent and its even worse if they grew up in military homes because they feel that even if you dont agree with whats happening its suppose to happen. they tend to forget that children are just children and not recruits or something. I do not agree with my husbands form of parenting and it has caused a big rif in our marriage but one thing I always remind him of is that I was the parent way before he stepped into the picture. I dont say this to undermind him but to remind him that he is new to this and can be a friend and parent and not just parent and the bad guy. And oh yeah tell your therapist your husband is making himself look like the bad guy by standing there fussing with a teenager. Once a child understands what is expected of them as far as chores or anything else they usually rise to the occasion. Try having family meetings and letting everyone voice their opinion in an open respectable manner. You might be surprised about what you hear. No don't dump the therapist, the therapist office is your child's safe place.

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