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Thread: Fed Up

  1. #1
    bosslady973
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    Fed Up

    Hello,

    I have posted on here once before and I am now coming to ask you all for advice on step-parenting. I have an 8 yr old SS and I have been a mom to him for almost 5 years. His mom has not been in his life since before I came into the picture. I treat him like my own child but my in laws treat my first born different than SS and the 2 kids I have with their son-my husband. I have a problem that when I discipline him, he runs to call his grandma and mom to vent to them and then i'm looked at like i'm wrong or his grandma tells me I bet not touch him. He lives under our roof and I thought it would be a good thing to treat him as my own and not like an outcast like they do my DS. I have them on a set schedule when it comes to playing, dinner, shower and bed. Just tonight he went on his venting spree because I threatened to discipline them because I told them to come in the house to get ready for school in the morning and they ignored me and didn't come in until I went to get them when it was dark outside. All of a sudden, he don't want to eat the dinner I fixed and had on the table for them saying that he was tired and then goes in the bed and calls his mom back. My 2 other sons sleep in the same room and plus it's almost 8pm, it's bed time. I go in there and mention to him, I thought you were tired, he replies, i'm talking to my mom for a little bit!! I wanted to say I don't care. You know it's bed time but all I did was close the door. His mom did not call him on Thanksgiving, Christmas or New Years, now all of a sudden, you have to call her and have so much to say because I said I was going to discipline you. He only talks to his mom if he calls her. She does not send money to help, she does not send clothes or anything for him, she doesn't see him. She hasn't seen him since he turned 5. I just can't take me being a mother to him and not being able to assert my authority like I do to my own. My son knows and feels they treat him differently and tells me so and he just turned 5. Am I wrong to feel the way I feel?

    P.S My husband and SS father said he would speak on it to them and talk to him but never has. He never sticks up for me or make me feel I have a say so. He let's them say and do what they want.

  2. #2
    Wiseman2
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    Try not to interfere with his real parents particularly his mother. You have no right to obstruct him from talking to her or any other of his real family.

    You can be strict and authoritarian with your biological children but legally, a step parent has no more authority than a baby-sitter. Your husband sounds involved and difficult . Deal with those issues and being overwhelmed instead. Leave the poor boy alone and let him call his real mother whenever he needs to.
    Quote Originally Posted by bosslady973 [Register to see the link]
    he don't want to eat the dinner I fixed and had on the table for them saying that he was tired and then goes in the bed and calls his mom back. My 2 other sons sleep in the same room and plus it's almost 8pm, it's bed time. I go in there and mention to him, I thought you were tired, he replies, i'm talking to my mom for a little bit!! I wanted to say I don't care. You know it's bed time but all I did was close the door.

  3. #3
    j.man
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    What exactly does disciplining them mean?

  4. #4
    ParisPaulette
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    I would tell the grandparents it's too bad, "My house, my rules, they're my kids." And then you tell your partner to either man up or stay out of it then, and you will handle the discipline and his parents as well. You're family, you all have kids together. You are queen bee of the household and this kid having a different mother doesn't really mean anything since she is not in the picture and you have an established relationship with shared children and a household.

    If the kid doesn't like it, your partner doesn't like it, and the grandparents and mom don't like it then he can go live with one of them.

    It's not fair to not say anything, let him make it harder on your kids and you, and get special privileges the rest of the kids in the house don't get. Quite the opposite. And as a stepmother, I'm sorry if it's your house, then yes you do have a right to tell him and anyone in the house how they behave and what rules to follow. Even babysitters have rules the kids have to follow and if they don't like it too bad. But unlike a babysitter, you don't get to leave at the end of the night and then find other people to hire you if a particular set of parents don't like how you do things. You are the adult.

    Time to sit the whole family down, not the grandparents though, and inform everyone "These are my rules, this is my house, you either follow them or there will be consequences. And this is not a democracy, so I'm not asking."

    When the kid didn't want dinner, your response is "Fine, but I'm not a short-order cook, so if you get hungry you figure it out." When he was on the phone to his mom and your kids were going to sleep you should have told him, "Then take the call in another room, so everyone else can stay on schedule." And you tell him to leave the room and he can talk to his mom elsewhere and then go to bed when he's done, but it's not fair to keep everyone up. Letting him walk all over you and your own kids is just going to create resentments and mistreatment of your own kids.

    And if the grandparents complain you ignore them. True you can't keep him from visiting them nor should you. But neither should you give in to or care about their complaints. If your stepson says something you tell him, "Too bad kiddo, I don't care what they say. You know the rules and it's my house." I think it's great you want this kid to be one of the family, but that means he shouldn't have any special privileges just because his grandparents think he should. They aren't the ones running your household nor should they be. And you don't prevent him from seeing them, tune out any complaints, and simply stick to your guns about "these are the rules of the household."

  5. #5
    SophieGrace
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    The kid is 8 years old and his life has been torn apart. His biological mother is gone; now he lives with a new mom who has two biological kids with his dad. This can't be easy for him. He is not an adult with adult understanding; he's just a kid in third grade. And he is NOT like your other kids; his mother left him and hardly calls and I'm sure he wishes she would call more and doesn't understand any of it. Give him a break.

    I am in the camp that you should not discipline him; leave it to your husband/his father. Try compassion and kindness. If he wants to call his mother back, tell him you understand and figure out a way to make it happen so your kids can sleep while he does it in another room.

  6. #6
    Hollyj
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    I agree with Paris.

    It is your household and this kid has to abide by your rules.

    Your husband has been worthless in this matter, and needs to step up to the plate. He is the real problem, here.

    Keep enforcing your boundaries, or this kid will run all over you!

  7. #7
    fabact
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    hey probably gets treated differently by the grandparents b/c his parents are divorced. your kids have you and your husband. I would try to leave him alone but just make sure he doesn't disrespect you or the house rules. that's all. just lay down the rules. your husband doesn't stick up for you b/c he probably feels guilty putting his kid through a divorce.

  8. #8
    bosslady973
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    This is me and my husbands first time married, so there has been no previous divorce. For those that stated I have no rights, I'm considered as a babysitter when it comes to right on my step son, I am very confused why you would think that. I stepped up when his mom walked out. I have his best interest at heart because I grew up with my mother not wanting me and I went years without her contacting me. How is it right for her to live her life the way she want and still be able to have control because she gave birth. That's just like saying if a parent gives their child up for adoption,they have a say so on how the new parents raise their child. I have made every attempt to keep her in contact with her son but that's not her priority. I even offered to pick her up so that she could spend time with him. She will go months without calling him and I'm the one that needs to step aside because I'm the step mom! That's Ludacris. It's not good for him to be played like a yo-yo. I'm just at a lost for words on some of the responses.

  9. #9
    Hell_On_Heels
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    I was a step-parent, and I understand what you're going through. The bad news is that it's going to be rough for a long time. The good news is that you get to control how you will respond to the situation and everyone in it.

    The first rule of parenting is Act, Don't React. Keep this in your head, constantly.

    If it were me, I'd call a family conference with your husband and the grandparents. I'd discuss how much the boy means to you, and how you and he needs the support of the whole family. I would imagine the boy is testing out his boundaries to see how much independence he can get for himself. It's natural. Your kids will do it, too, at some point in time.

    What has to stop is any negative interfering with your parenting. If they have constructive things to say, listen, and try to compromise. Anything else just makes it more difficult on the boy.

    You can let some things slide a bit, and you can explain this to your own kids by saying that your SS is older. Kids get this.

    Being a parent or a stepparent is a thankless job for a long long time. I understand that you share a similar pain with him, that you both deal with abandonment issues...but his issues are not yours. While it's natural to feel that he might owe you for your love, he doesn't. You either love him, or you don't. No strings can be attached, and if you're feeling there are some deep down inside, I'd gently but strongly suggest you examine that.

    At eight years old, he's not capable of understanding what you already know. And you can't protect kids from pain no matter how hard you try. What you CAN do is provide emotional security, and the tools he needs to thrive.

    Again, get the support of the extended family so that they back you if he calls to complain about your rules. Accept that they probably won't say that he has to obey you. They're more likely to talk him through his feelings, and that's ok. If they are talking badly about you, that's unacceptable, and I'd say so.

    As for his mom, he will come to understand her role when he's ready. Hearts are pretty big, especially with kids. He can love her and love you too, but you've got to make that easy for him to do.

    It's not easy. But it is worthwhile.

  10. #10
    Wiseman2
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    Because legally she's his mother and you are not. Also your emotions and feelings should not cloud that fact and you need to stop obstructing him from contacting her. She did not give him up for adoption and you did not adopt him. You are quite mean to insist to the boy that she somehow gave him up or relinquished her parental rights, when she has not.

    Stop interfering with the relationship between the boy and his mother it's none of your business. You don't make the laws according to your authoritarian ways and your feelings. He will hate you one day when he remembers you yelling at him to go to bed or eat etc when he wanted to talk to his mother.
    Quote Originally Posted by bosslady973 [Register to see the link]
    How is it right for her to live her life the way she want and still be able to have control because she gave birth.

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