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I want to be "just" Dad's wife

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I am re-defining my role in my own head... I want to be "just" Dad's wife.  I don't want to "be" stepmom to my sd anymore. 

I feel like in my head being defined as stepmom carries with it responsibilities to the child.  But by defining myself as just Dad's wife, it is a totally different role in my mind. 

The recent decline in my relationship with my sd has brought me to this conclusion.  By allowing myself to only consider myself as dad's wife, I feel like I mostly just need to support my husband but not make "raising" or parenting my sd my concern. 

I guess to me it just feels like one more step in disengaging from my stepfamily situation. 

My sd has become increasingly disrespectful and I feel like the only recourse I have right now is to step back... way back.  I have my own son to take care of and worry about.  My husband is currently unwilling to address the situation with my sd.  Honestly, I am not completely innocent in contributing to the current situation, but I feel like I haven't really "done" anything to make things the way they are.  I mean that maybe I could have reacted to a few things differently, but my behavior and attitudes toward my sd haven't really changed.  The main problem is I'm not willing to just let my sd's disrespect happen to me.  I really feel like sd's bm has had a huge impact on the way things currently are.  I also think my dh has allowed things to digress to the current situation. 

I feel powerless to really change my sd's behavior, so I feel like the only action I can take right now is to step back and just be a wife to my dh and a mom to my ds. 

Thoughts? 



by on Jul. 26, 2013 at 4:56 PM
Replies (51-54):
whatIknownow
by Emerald Member on Oct. 4, 2013 at 11:20 AM

this is a very good update! 

SteeleJ
by Member on Oct. 4, 2013 at 12:05 PM

I have a very similar sitch. I have a SD14 and she sounds very much like your SD. The rolling of eyes and acting like I'm a jerk for asking her to do anything. So I disengaged a couple of months ago as well. I no longer ask her to do ANYTHING. When it comes time for showers and laundry stuff on weekends she is there, I DO NOT say anything to her. I tell my kids to get their stuff done and leave her to do what she wants, if it doesn't get done, not my fault. I have told DH that I am no longer going to ask her to do things around the house, if he wants her to do something he can tell her.

MY DH does a lot of the guilty dad stuff as well. Treats her as though she is 5, and expects nothing of her. So this disengaging has worked well for me as I don't worry about what she is doing when she's with us. It's all on him.

EmbraceTheChaos
by on Oct. 4, 2013 at 3:59 PM

Wow...I think I would be reflecting a lot harder on your DH not supporting you in the role of being another adult in the house, whether you want the responsibility of that or not. I have been involved in my SK's lives for 3 years, am happily married to my DH and it would be a cold day in H before I backed away from my SM relationship with them over one of them being defiant. Their defiance grows from respect, or a lack there of and if she doesnt respect you, that's on DH as her father to establish that its unacceptable. You can try everything under the sun but if he, as her father, isnt backing and supporting the need to respect you, you are screwed. Its not a child's problem if you are their parent by marriage or blood. You're an adult in the house and even if you assume no legal responsibility, that still binds you to their well being. I think its somewhat comical that changing your title could somehow resolve the issues you are having. Honestly, I think you are in for a rough time ahead if you back off from the role you have had as trying to parent her at all and say its just dad's problem now. She is going to know what you say holds no merrit and whenever Dad isn't around being "Dad's wife" isn't going to mean a damn thing. No matter what anyone says legally, you are out of your head if you think that you have no responsibility for your SO's children. Don't get married if you can't commit to the kids as well. They've already dealt with their parents splitting and its super selfish to make more divides with the parent they have that you married and you...

looneytunes290
by on Oct. 4, 2013 at 4:05 PM

Thanks for the update! Sounds like things are "on the mend"

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