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4 Bumps

What do you think of a step mom who does this?

My good friend is divorced and shares custody 50/50 (he is there every other weekend friday after school till monday when it is time to go back to school and night a week) with her 6 year old son with her ex husband. Since they share 50/50 there is no child support, they just each provide for the child when he is in their home (this includes having clothes for him at both houses, which is nice, in theory at least because he doesn't have to pack a bag) and split medical bills and activities. The dad is remarried and he and his wife have a 2 year old. Every other monday. her son comes home from school in worn out, mis-matched clothes that are usually too small or too big by at least a size. She says she tries not to let this bother her because she can't control what goes on at his dad's house. Well today, we ran into the step mom at the mall with her son (the 2 year old) and she had BAGS AND BAGS of clothes from children's stores. We said hi and I said "wow, it looks like the boys are getting whole new wardrobes" (I was assuming that there were clothes for both boys in there since there was SO much.) She said, "oh well, this is just for Christian (her son) because David (the 8 year old) already has plenty". I could tell my friend was upset but she stayed calm and just said "well, I am sure he has plenty but it seems they are the wrong sizes" (remember, every other monday he comes home in one of these oufits so she does see them). The step mom flipped out and said it was not her concern what goes in in her house (I guess she forgot that this is HER child?). My friend simply asked that from now on, could she please be sure that her son goes to school in a clean, matching, oufit that fit and is appropriate for the weather. The step mom stormed away in a huff. I can't believe this woman treats the two boys so unequally, the fact of the matter is that her husband doesn't have to pay child support because they are supposed to provide everything he needs at their house and she is getting upset because she is expected to do that. Oh I should mention, the father works 60 plus hours so the step mom does almost everything around the house, including buying the clothes for the children. It is so sad because he even gets teased at school about those clothes meanwhile, his half brother seems to have a new oufit for every day of the year (just from what I saw). Is it wrong for a step mom to act this way? I know he is not her child and never will be but shouldn't he be treated equally and get the same amount of clothes as his half brother? I mean think about it, his dad makes all the money in the house and he is his dad just as much as his half brother's so shouldn't he get an equal share of dad's resources, at least while in their home? (I know the money is step mom's too, I am also a stay at home mom, but you would think she would at least want to make it equal for both boys right?)

Answer Question
 
Anonymous

Asked by Anonymous at 10:01 PM on Feb. 25, 2011 in Parenting Debate

Answers (27)
  • I personally think she should have spoken to her ex husband about this if it's been happening for a while instead of say something to the stepmom in a public area. That kind of talk needs to be done in private.
    mommy_of_two388

    Answer by mommy_of_two388 at 10:04 PM on Feb. 25, 2011

  • Technically it's the dad's job to make sure that he has clothes, not the step mom. With that said, a true mom wouldn't care if the child is from her womb or not.

    I would be upset but if the dad isn't saying something to his wife, then there is really nothing she can do except talk to her ex about it and see if things change.
    Jademom07

    Answer by Jademom07 at 10:06 PM on Feb. 25, 2011

  • Yes, they definitely should be treated equally. But, I think the father should be notified and step and see that the situation is resolved.
    tootoobusy

    Answer by tootoobusy at 10:07 PM on Feb. 25, 2011

  • They don't talk, it was an abusive relationship, he has stopped drinking and I think he is ashamed of the way he treated her but because of that, he doesn't call her and rarely takes her calls. That is the other problem, if there is a problem (like this one) she can either take it to court or put up with it (and it would be kinda stupid to take this to court).
    Anonymous

    Comment by Anonymous (original poster) at 10:07 PM on Feb. 25, 2011

  • They don't talk, it was an abusive relationship, he has stopped drinking and I think he is ashamed of the way he treated her but because of that, he doesn't call her and rarely takes her calls. That is the other problem, if there is a problem (like this one) she can either take it to court or put up with it (and it would be kinda stupid to take this to court).

    Well if she cares about her child it's time both her and her ex grows up, put the past behind them and finally get to talking.
    mommy_of_two388

    Answer by mommy_of_two388 at 10:12 PM on Feb. 25, 2011

  • Is this a consistent thing? I am not defending the step-mom, but there are times my oldest one goes to school with mismatched outfit and wrong sized clothes as well (just b/c I am too tired or her quirky fashion sense wore me out that morning). How about his other needs, education, food, socialization, hobby, does he seem happy, etc? If the cloth thing is a symptom of other problems, i would arrange a meeting with the ex-husband and the wife, lay out the concerns (not in an accusatory manner), just factual. Ultimately this is not about who is right/wrong b/c the person who is bearing the brunt of this is the 8 year old. The goal is to take the path of least resistance while getting the 8 year old taken care of. If the situation doesn't improve, I'd document everything meticulously, hire an attorney and go for sole custody with visitation rights/child support.
    Olivia4116

    Answer by Olivia4116 at 10:14 PM on Feb. 25, 2011

  • mommy of 2, she has tried, he refuses to talk and the judge said as long as he picks the child up and drops him off on time (which he has the SM do) he is fine.

    Olivia, yes this is everytime he is over there. He is a size 8 pants and medium shirt and he comes home wearing size 12 pants and Xsmall shirt (just one example)
    Anonymous

    Comment by Anonymous (original poster) at 10:18 PM on Feb. 25, 2011

  • Tell her to take him to court. I can curtness that no judge will think it's okay for a child to be always wearing clothes that don't fit him. Have her try to shoot him an e-mail or something.
    mommy_of_two388

    Answer by mommy_of_two388 at 10:21 PM on Feb. 25, 2011

  • Yes, especially since he is not having to pay child support.
    Honda309

    Answer by Honda309 at 10:37 PM on Feb. 25, 2011

  • I would flip a biotch!!!
    Ballababy177

    Answer by Ballababy177 at 10:59 PM on Feb. 25, 2011

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