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Need guidance please.

Posted by on Apr. 18, 2013 at 4:04 PM
  • 15 Replies

This is my first time talking on one of these things, but I really need some advice.  My husband has 3 children and i have 2......together we have 5.  We have been married 2 years now and have just hit a really rough area.  His 15 yo son is starting to manipulate his father and it is truly driving a wedge between us, we grow further and further apart each day.  My husband is a very loving and caring man and couldn't hurt a fly in any way!  With that being said, he is terrible at discipline.  If the kids do something bad, he will talk to them softly and then feel terrible about it and take them out shopping.  I on the other hand am Drill instructor mom!  I believe in raising children to do chores around the house, teach them life lessons that will carry them through life, and I don't put up with any BS.  If you did something wrong, you will have to pay the pipper.  Action=Conciquence. 

Well like i said his oldest 15 year old will do thing to drive us apart.  He is a smart kid, and knows each of our weaknesses and strengths.  Well last week, he was on his way out the back door with my 6 year old to jump on the trampoline.  I told him no hard objects on the trampoline and to put them down.  He said "Gawwwhhhhlll!!!".  So off they went to jump.  Well 5 min later i went to check on them, and he had given my daughter the hard plastic gun and he had the broom handle on the trampoline.  The very thing I told him not to do, he did.  Well I take the run away from my daughter and told her i told you "NO", she said but Nico said it was ok.  I took his broom handle and said your father will hear about this.  I had to walk away because I was sooooooooooo angry.  I went into the kitchen 10 min later, where my husband and his son were.  Nico tried to give me an excuse, and I told him NO excuses, you deliberately defied me, and you could have hurt yourself or Isabella.  I didn't tell you NO to be mean, I told you NO because a security issue.  Just who do you think you are to tell Bella that it was OK, when it wasn't?  Of course there was no answer.  Let me remind you that my husband talks to his kids softly, I spoke to him in a very stern voice (did not yell).  His father then tells me that he didn't mean it, and that i was being too hard on him. 

Anything these kids ask for, they get.  I have decided to pull my child support out of "our" bank account because his kids were going on vacations with groups, getting all sorts of electronics, etc, etc.  My children couldn't do anything because all the money was going to them.  I have a seperate bank account for child support now so I can make sure my girls will finally get  vacation this year, and I have been able to buy them clothes that they need.  I work as well and make 3x as much as he does and that still goes into the Joint bank account.  So the children are still able to do things but they will not be using child support meant for my two kids.

So last week Nico tells his father that he doesn't like going to our church (Baptist) and he no longer wants to go.  My husband fills me in on this last night and said that he will not make the kids go to our church if they don't want to because they are catholic.  I feel this is seperating the family, and that at times you have to tell your children NO, secondly we are trying to teach the children respect for other religions.  This is not teaching them respect, we are teaching him that he gets his way no matter what.  I support them being catholic even though I do not believe in it.  When they are here on religious holidays I try to help them meet their goals in it.....ie:good friday, lent. 

I feel the kids are pushing us apart and that my husband needs to learn that he is their father, not their friend.  It is up to him, as the head of the house to guide the family especially to church.   I am so frustrated, irritated, and fed up. 

 

by on Apr. 18, 2013 at 4:04 PM
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Replies (1-10):
newstepmom61811
by on Apr. 18, 2013 at 4:17 PM
5 moms liked this

Carefully read your post...carefully...the 15 year old isn't driving you apart...your expectations are...

1. You aren't a nuclear family. He isn't your child. Your husband believes in different parenting than you do. Ultimately he should be handling the discipline of HIS kids in a case like this. You can never make a blended family what it is not, an intact nuclear one.

2. You have been married only 2 years. He was 13 when  you became his SM. He will likely always view you as dad's wife, not a firm parental authority in his life, he has simply had too many years growing up with established parenting patterns by his mother and father. Your only option is to let the father handle it or you will continue to alienate yourself from your SS and ultimately your DH.

3. He was raised in the Catholic faith and is not your son. If he does't want to sit through services of another faith it is not your place to make that happen. Respecting another faith does not mean he has to show it by sitting through services of another faith. It means he respects and does not interfere with the rights of others to practice theirs. He is voicing his desire to not have a faith he wasn't raised in imposed on him. He isn't your child and you must respect that.

I think your intentions are good, I recognize that you want a cohesive familial feeling home but in a blended family, especially one that blended with teens you have to realize these personalities in the kids are already set and well entrenched by the parenting styles they have already been raised with by the bioparents. It isn't the place of a stepparent to come in a change all that and will only serve to alienate the SK and ultimately the bioparents. It's tough but the best advice to to strive to be good roomates and come to a place of mutual respect and personal space with teen SKs, lead by good example and let the BP handle the discipline, pick your battles carefully.

kristinbugg
by on Apr. 18, 2013 at 4:26 PM

These are not your children.  Their dad doesn't have to parent HIS children to YOUR standards.  If Dad chooses to allow the children to skip church, that is DAD's prerogative and none of YOUR concern.  Dad can parent his own children without your interference.

DDDaysh
by on Apr. 18, 2013 at 4:59 PM
1 mom liked this

 I can certainly understand your frustration with the safety issue on the trampoline, but you aren't going to be able to change a 15-year-old who isn't your child.  Your best bet there is to just make sure your kids aren't on the trampoline with him. 

I noticed one HUGE incosistency in your post though.  You claim that your husband is the head of the household.  I don't really agree with that whole thing, but I'll go with it.  You complain that he isn't behaving towards his son the way you think a head of the household should, that he isn't exhibiting the appropriate level of control.  However, YOU basically counteract everything he says.  You question his parenting methods.  You question his decision to not make his son worship outside his faith.  You basically want to rule your husband and then complain that he isn't strong enough.  Do you know how contradictory that is? 

So many things in your post should have been settled before you guys got married.  They weren't.  Your best hope now is to go to marital counseling to see if you guys can work out a compromise to bring peace to your home.  You have to realize, however, that if you compromise you'll have to give in some areas too. 

jules2boys
by Gold Member on Apr. 18, 2013 at 5:01 PM

I agree with newstepmom.  I also have to ask.  Were these 'faults' you find with your DH's parenting something that never presented themselves while you two were dating?  Were you never around him/his children while dating to see the vast differences in your parenting styles? Did you go into this thinking you'd 'change him' or 'change them'?  Did he perhaps say it was ok to change them but didn't really mean it?  I'm just wondering how this wouldn't have been obvious prior to marriage? 

boysmom5
by Bronze Member on Apr. 19, 2013 at 1:26 PM

I understand your frustration.  When dh and I got together we had separate parenting styles and my skids acted like they had been raised by wolves.  We sat down and had a very serious talk about how we wanted to run our home and what expectations we had for all our children.  Dh adopted my way of parenting and backs me up.  I wish you luck.

Drumama
by Member on Apr. 19, 2013 at 7:42 PM
The child is old enough, I think, to make his own decision about his faith. That should be respected by you and his father. He is 15, not 5.
chanizen
by Platinum Member on Apr. 19, 2013 at 9:20 PM
Well said.
Quoting newstepmom61811:

Carefully read your post...carefully...the 15 year old isn't driving you apart...your expectations are...

1. You aren't a nuclear family. He isn't your child. Your husband believes in different parenting than you do. Ultimately he should be handling the discipline of HIS kids in a case like this. You can never make a blended family what it is not, an intact nuclear one.

2. You have been married only 2 years. He was 13 when  you became his SM. He will likely always view you as dad's wife, not a firm parental authority in his life, he has simply had too many years growing up with established parenting patterns by his mother and father. Your only option is to let the father handle it or you will continue to alienate yourself from your SS and ultimately your DH.

3. He was raised in the Catholic faith and is not your son. If he does't want to sit through services of another faith it is not your place to make that happen. Respecting another faith does not mean he has to show it by sitting through services of another faith. It means he respects and does not interfere with the rights of others to practice theirs. He is voicing his desire to not have a faith he wasn't raised in imposed on him. He isn't your child and you must respect that.

I think your intentions are good, I recognize that you want a cohesive familial feeling home but in a blended family, especially one that blended with teens you have to realize these personalities in the kids are already set and well entrenched by the parenting styles they have already been raised with by the bioparents. It isn't the place of a stepparent to come in a change all that and will only serve to alienate the SK and ultimately the bioparents. It's tough but the best advice to to strive to be good roomates and come to a place of mutual respect and personal space with teen SKs, lead by good example and let the BP handle the discipline, pick your battles carefully.


star33
by Member on Apr. 19, 2013 at 10:34 PM
Quoting jules2boys:

I agree with newstepmom.  I also have to ask.  Were these 'faults' you find with your DH's parenting something that never presented themselves while you two were dating?  Were you never around him/his children while dating to see the vast differences in your parenting styles? Did you go into this thinking you'd 'change him' or 'change them'?  Did he perhaps say it was ok to change them but didn't really mean it?  I'm just wondering how this wouldn't have been obvious prior to marriage? 

these thoughts cross my mind on all these type posts.why did u not see these differences,whatever they may be,before u married them?i wouldn't force a teenager to go to my church.where safety issues r concerned,dad should step up & talk to him.the $ issue would've made me hit the roof.i hope u work it out.
MommySabs
by Gold Member on Apr. 19, 2013 at 11:07 PM
You should not try to force a teenager to attend your church. If he is uncomfortable and would rather attend his church allow either his father or mother to take him to his place of worship. I can tell you as the parent on the other side of the coin if his dad had backed you (wrongly). It would create a problem between him and his child. We are episcopal and during lent my exh tried to force my children to eat meat on a Friday. They become very agitated and upset and called me very concerned. I explained if they ate meat it would bot be a huge deal but they remained insistent that they would not eat before eating meat. They were very angry at their father until he relented and gave them a meat free meal. My point here is that they weren't really worried about meat or no meat ( again explained it would be okay they would be fine if that's what dad made). They were upset bc their dad was not respecting their beliefs and their practice. You are not respecting this childs beliefs and practice.
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amantonacci
by Platinum Member on Apr. 19, 2013 at 11:19 PM

I think you need to step back... you need to let dad parent his children.

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