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I love my husband but my step son is coming between us!

Posted by on Aug. 18, 2013 at 11:42 PM
  • 30 Replies
My step son is almost 16. My husband thinks everything with him is a "non issue" because he makes good grades, he does not skip school, smoke weed or anything like that. I feel like svery 5 minutes of my day is an issue with him. He is smart but his grades are only good because he is told all the time wbat he needs to be doing. He has to be reminded constantly or he aould not have anything to turn in and would fail. At his age I do not feel like he should have to be drug around by his hand. He should be allowed to fail so that he may learn the lesson himself. He only has his learners license because his dad sat with him the night the before the test and went over the questions with him. My step son had the study book for the entire previous year and never opened it. Since then he never asks to drive. Has made no effort to do any of the requied things to get his license and his das continues to take him every where and do evrything for him. The child can not even do the dishes which his only chore with out having to be reminded or having to do them twicebecause they were half done. It is the same argument all the time about him needing to get his head out of his butt. The problem is that I am the only one having the argument because my husband thinks it is not that bad and it is just going to magicaly click jn his sons head one day. Every time I bring it up I am told it is a none issue and I am made to feel like I am being to hard on him or that I am picking on him. As a side note ....I have three children of my own and my 8 year old son is way more functional than than my teenage step son. My husband always uses the excuse that his son is a just a normal teenager and will grow out of it. I have seen no progress with my step son in the area of responsibility or in any way wanting gain independence in tbe last three years. He has not matured at all. I am ready to pull my hair out dealing with him and it makes me so angry at my husband that I am counting down the days til my step son graduates and moves out....but at this rate of imaturity I do not know how he will be able to do that!! Please help. I need advice!!!:
by on Aug. 18, 2013 at 11:42 PM
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by Gold Member on Aug. 19, 2013 at 12:44 AM
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It sounds like your husband is the one doing things for him so why do you have an issue? I know it must be annoying but some kids need a foot constantly shoved in their rear end so they accomplish things...such as school. I have a teen son like that. I also gave a dd8 that isn't like that at all.
by Bronze Member on Aug. 19, 2013 at 1:02 AM

 same thing going on here..  won't showeror change clothes  unless hes told,  if he washes a dish he will only wash his there  could be ONE freaking spoon in there that someone else used he will only  wash  his. He squeaks thru school with c's only bcause bm spoon feeds him everything. He  just went on a huge 12 day hiking trip in another state  with scouts I t cost us a ton of money and I don't feel he was mature enough to appreciate it or deserve to go (hes 3 years younger than the rest of the kids that went)... dh pushed him the entire time to get badge work done so he could go i thought maybe hed come back a little more mature but ahhh no..

Today all day (every day he was here)  he sits on the couch playing on his ds or phone and watched dh cut the grass and work on cars until my dh finally yelled at him to get up off his ass and help out..  with this I stay out of it let them deal.. its their monster  all I knowis hes not gonna live in my basement and play on his xbox when hes 21

by Gold Member on Aug. 19, 2013 at 5:52 AM
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I agree that must be frustrating that your SS lacks motivation and doesn't take initiative, and it seems your husband is enabling that.

However, until your husband also sees it as an issue, trying to make him see it will be the thing affecting your marriage, not your SS. He knows how you feel, I say now just step back, and perhaps he will come to the realization on his own that he's not doing his son any favors in the long run.
by on Aug. 19, 2013 at 8:19 AM
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I'm sorry, this is the stupidest thing I have read in a long time.

You seem to really resent this kid. His dad seems like an excellent dad - kudos to him.

My advice - let your husband parent his kid the way he wants, what he is doing is working so far. The kid will be fine. I would look inward to find the source of your resentment toward this boy.

Quoting Kajjoe:

He is smart but his grades are only good because he is told all the time wbat he needs to be doing. He has to be reminded constantly or he aould not have anything to turn in and would fail. At his age I do not feel like he should have to be drug around by his hand. He should be allowed to fail so that he may learn the lesson himself. 

by Silver Member on Aug. 19, 2013 at 8:30 AM

I think you are overreacting.  He sounds like a good kid who just needs reminders.  Chill out.  He'll be fine.

by Silver Member on Aug. 19, 2013 at 8:40 AM
Many, MANY 16 year olds still need reminders and many, MANY parents still enjoy being needed. In a very short time, those parents will be pushed aside in favor of other teenaged pursuits. Let father and son have their relationship. It works for them - I think your mistake is believing it must work for you as well.

My kids SM has one child when she came I to their lives - her child was 3 and DD and DS were 10 and 12. SM was an expert on everything they 'should' be doing and what they were doing wrong. I often wonder how her complete lack of experience with children that age and her total lack of knowledge of DD and DS made her such an expert? The answer: it didn't. In five short years, she has completely destroyed the easy relationship they had with their dad. Her actions have removed all the fun from visits. My kids really don't want to even see him anymore due to the wedge she created and he allowed to be created.

Don't be the kind of SM who destroys something just because it is different from your own experience.
by Member on Aug. 19, 2013 at 9:06 AM

My only suggestion:  stop dealing with SS.  Counting days til he graduates ... what a waste of your life.  N

by on Aug. 19, 2013 at 9:30 AM
I appreciate all of the responses. It is just so frustrating. His dad works second shift so I am the one that has to constantly push my step son to do the things he knows he needs to and then my husband comes along and makes my step son think it is all no big deal. I know I have never raised a teenager but neither has my husband as this is his oldest child. I have been a teenager and I had two older brothers. My husband agrees that his son is not nearly as responsible or mature as he should be but somehow thinks that if we do nothing his son is just gonna wake up one day and have it all together. There are no issues of my step sons mom thinking I know a better way or morethan she does about raising kids. My step son decided to come live with us just before school started last year. He left his house where he had his own room and only his sister to deal with to come live with us in a tiny house where there are 3 other children and ever piece of space is shared. He had the best school year he had ever had and was so proud that he did not miss any days for the year. He is a very nice and loving child and I treat him like he is my own. I know how fast the next three years are going to go and I just do not see how he is going to be ready to leave home if his dad does not back me and force my son to do things for himself instead of trying to do everything for him. I do not want this to come between my husband and I but all 5 kids have to come before we do. I do not think I can just sit back and leave it alone and hope for the best. If I do that he will never get it together and I feel that is unfair to him. I would not sit back and watch one of my own kids make no progress toward maturing so why should I do it with my step son. My bigger fear is that there are 4 other children that we have to raise. Is it going to be like this with the rest of them?!
by on Aug. 19, 2013 at 9:31 AM
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I can understand your frustration.  IMHO, your husband is doing his son a disservice by not teaching him the life skills he will need.  But unless/until your husband sees an issue or wishes to change things, you'll just be beating your head against the wall and be the bad guy all the time.

My suggestion?  With regards to the homework, the driving, etc?  Let your DH deal with it.  If you're the one who is doing all of the reminding, stop.  I agree that at 16, it seems silly that that the kid isn't more autonomous but he's not-- he's never been taught to be.   How can a kid learn those skills if he's never been given the framework?

With regards to the chores?  I wouldn't remind and nag.  If it doesn't get done either A) leave it for DH ie "Honey, I asked SS to wash the dishes but he didn't get around to it so can you please take care of that? Thanks!"  or B) Tell SS once "Let me know when you've got the dishes done and I'll get breakfast/lunch/dinner/whatever made.  Thanks!"

I had/have similar frustrations to your with regards to my SDs.  They'd never been expected to do anything around the house or do anything for themselves.  My husband had no problem with staying up til midnight doing their laundry, spending the whole weekend cleaning the disaster of a house while the kids were visiting Mom, watching TV, hanging out, etc.  If he asked the kids to do something and they didn't, he just did it for them.  He felt that it was easier to do it himself than teach them how to do things correctly or enforce/discipline.

If it had only affected him, I would've left it alone.The issue was that he expected ME to be okay with it and do like he was doing.  

We made some changes around our house.  But not until DH and I were on the same page.  We made a lot of compromises.  For example, other than getting food/dishes out of their rooms, I don't worry about messy bedrooms. I just close the doors.  DH cleans those rooms if the kids don't.  I don't touch anything.

I expect help keeping up the common areas of the house.  We all use those spaces and dangit, we can all chip in to keep them clean.

We all do our own laundry.  If the kids are out of clothes, it's a personal problem.  Not one that is going to keep Dad or me up late for lack of planning. (if there are special circumstances, fine, but not weekly like before)

DH expects that homework is done by the time he gets home from work unless there's something they need help with and then they're to let him know right away, not at bedtime.

by Krystal on Aug. 19, 2013 at 9:37 AM
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 Sounds a lot like my brother at that age, to be honest. Except he did smoke weed back then. If my brother wasn't told/asked or reminded to do something, he didn't do it. He took care of himself, hygiene wise, but as far as chores, school work and stuff went, he was constantly having to be told or asked to do it or reminded of when it was due. My grandma did everything for him then, as our father has not physically been in our lives since I was 10yo (I'm the oldest).

That said, my brother is now almost 28yo, has two beautiful boys, a successful job, a nice home and is constantly fixing or remodeling something for one member of our family or the other (mostly grandma). My brother was the kind of teenager you described your stepson to be, but he grew up and changed when life demanded he do so and now he's doing awesome. No one would have believed you if you told them when he was 16yo that he'd be the man he is today, he's just so different now.

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