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Old 10-01-2004, 01:13 PM   #1
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littlegal HB User
Angry Soon to be stepmom - need advice!!

I am in a relationship with a wonderful man and I love his daughter as if she was mine. The problem is the biological mother. Everything has to be her way or no way!! She tells us when to pick the child up and when to bring her back. She even determines how long we can talk on the phone to her, it's neither supper time, bath time or bed time. I even tried to call at different times - that didn't work. I am very happy with my boyfriend and his daughter. We do several things together as a family!! The bio mom tends to "want" to cause arguements between us. I hope to get married soon, but how can I cope with the bio mom and learn to brush it off. I really think of her as a human being and try to be nice but I am the one to always get hurt. Any advise!!

 
Old 10-01-2004, 05:32 PM   #2
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dalesgirl HB User
Re: Soon to be stepmom - need advice!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by littlegal
I am in a relationship with a wonderful man and I love his daughter as if she was mine. The problem is the biological mother. Everything has to be her way or no way!! She tells us when to pick the child up and when to bring her back. She even determines how long we can talk on the phone to her, it's neither supper time, bath time or bed time. I even tried to call at different times - that didn't work. I am very happy with my boyfriend and his daughter. We do several things together as a family!! The bio mom tends to "want" to cause arguements between us. I hope to get married soon, but how can I cope with the bio mom and learn to brush it off. I really think of her as a human being and try to be nice but I am the one to always get hurt. Any advise!!
Being a step-mother myself I have always lived by the rule knowing that legally I have no rights and I feel all step-parents should look at things this way. What I mean is I love my step-daughter as if she's my own but I always keep in mind she has two parents to make ALL of her major decisions. I can sit in the background and prompt my husband to do things or give my opinion to him on what he should do and when step-daughter is in my home I treat her like my own but step back when there are issues that mom and dad need to deal with.

Trust me though, I know the controlling thing. First off your boyfriend needs to look at his court order and know what it says(I really hope he has one because if he doesn't then he more then likely legally doesn't have visitation rights and that gives mom all the power. ). If the order says specific times then legally he has to abide by them. If it doesn't... personally it really should. My husband has always rolled over for his ex and abided by her 'rules' as it made things easier between them. He finally had enough and he and I sat down and did a modification of the decree and he now goes to court in Nov. Bio-mom doesn't like this AT ALL and things have been 10 times worse then they ever were, at least until we go to court.

 
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Old 10-02-2004, 09:30 PM   #3
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myladyshyanne HB User
Re: Soon to be stepmom - need advice!!

I'm probably on the wrong side of the fence to be giving you advise, but figured I'd offer a few suggestions. My oldest sons father and I aren't together anymore. And at first, we had a hard time seeing eye to eye. Then we both got remarried- and we grew up. Okay- I grew up, he still is difficult His wife is actually real nice though. In fact, when I refer to her when my son and I talk about her-we both call her his mom Amy. How I explained it to my son, if you feel like she's a mom, you can call her mom- it won't bug me (but I have to admit-it did a little at first). But if you don't want to call her mom-you don't have to. Call her anything you want-but no cuss words.

One thing, I feel I must point out is that-although you love his daughter like your own, she's not your own. And bio mom probably feels threatened by your love for daughter. The thought of someone else trying to take her place (that is how she probably see's it)-probably crushes her. So, she tries to get you two fighting to get you out of the picture. Limiting his time with her is also limiting your time with her. Its not very mature, and it doesn't look out for the childs best interest (I've always told my ex he can spend as much time with son as he wants, as long as he lets me know ahead of time).

What you may want to try, is to call and talk to her- invite her to lunch. If she says no, try to talk to her on the phone. Tell her what a wonderful daughter she has, and how good of a job she has done raising her. If you give her some credit for being a single mom and trying, maybe she wont feel so threatened.

Also, I think alot of times the parent with primary custody will make alot of the decisions for the child. I do. But I don't do it out of spite, I do it because- in all reality- my son spends 93% of his time with me, I know what he needs, and I make sure he gets it. If he needs extra tutoring, he'll get extra tutoring. When he needed glasses, I got him glasses. When the teacher suggested he se a phsyciatrist, I took him to see one. When the psyc. said he needed meds for ADHD, I said okay and asked about non amphetamine meds. I didn't do it to exclude my ex- even though it may look that way- I did it because someone who was a qualified to tell me he needed it-told me he needed it. At first my ex was really upset about the glasses- so I got two more opinions from optical people, and one from a specialist (he was invited to go- but never did). He was still in doubt. So he took son to his optical person, and got his opinion. And like the other 4- he said he needed glasses too. Same thing with the ADHD. Ex got mad about the diagnosis, he actually went to see doc with us, never went again though. Then his wife informed him the meds son was on were the safest out for ADHD in her opinion also (she had been to college several years to be a pharmasist). He backed off some then. I guess what I'm trying to say is- when a parent has primary custody- I THINK we generally just automatically make the needed decision, because usually- we know more of whats going on with the child. They spend most of their time with us. We don't do it to be mean (at least I don't), its just habit. Your child has a need, you meet the need. You don't make them go with out. Please don't think Im a total ogre! I do discuss some issues with him- if its more a parenting thing and not a medical (sorry- I stick to my guns on whose certified to give medical opinions on my child- and although ex's hand writing is just as bad as a doctors-it doesn't make him a doctor).

If you and boyfriend want to start a life together, I say go for it! Remember, its not up to bio mom in that area. Also keep in mind, she'll only bug you if you let her bug you. And last but not least, smile and be nice. That's one thing I learned. Kindness is contagious. No matter how much you want to throttle her- just be nice. Laugh, smile, and joke with her. And when she doesn't get the reaction she wants-she'll lighten up.

Also, make sure there's a court order regarding parenting time. As well any other issues that need addressed.

AND Remember, with age-comes maturity....okay most of the time thats true (your talking to a 27 year old who tried to get a tomato fight going a few weeks ago-the other adults thought I'd lost my marbles!!!).

Thanks for listening.
Sorry for the rambling-once I start yacking, its hard to shut me up.
ladyshy

 
Old 10-03-2004, 05:39 AM   #4
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dalesgirl HB User
Re: Soon to be stepmom - need advice!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by myladyshyanne
In fact, when I refer to her when my son and I talk about her-we both call her his mom Amy. How I explained it to my son, if you feel like she's a mom, you can call her mom- it won't bug me (but I have to admit-it did a little at first). But if you don't want to call her mom-you don't have to. Call her anything you want-but no cuss words.
FINALLY someone who thinks like I do. I had told people that if my ex ever dated someone that my kids felt comfortable enough calling mom I was fine with that. I am secure enough to know who I am and I think if they like someone enough to call them that then obviously she's good to my kids! Now, my husband's ex doesn't feel that way at all. She has come right and told me that we wouldn't have problems unless sd wanted to call me mom. I stated to her how I felt about my own kids and she stated under no uncertain terms that she was the mother(as if I would ever think differently). My husband called both his step-parents 'mom' and 'dad' and had said that my sd too would want to sooner or later. Well, the problem arose earlier. She is only 8(nine in December) and last Thanksgiving she asked her daddy if she could call me mom. It broke my heart to tell her No. I told her why also and told her that we could come up with a 'special' name if she wanted but she didn't so she calls me by my first name.

 
Old 10-03-2004, 07:03 AM   #5
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myladyshyanne HB User
Re: Soon to be stepmom - need advice!!

Thats heartbreaking. Bio mom needs to look out for daughters best interest-not her own. Being the bio mom, I understand her fears, but I also feel its a selfish attitude to take. Daughter shouldn't have to hide here true feelings (by not being able to call you what she feels), all that will do is harbor self esteme issues (daughter will get impression that her feelings are unworthy to be heard).Most anyone can be a mother or father- but it takes a true, loving, caring special individual to be a mom or dad. And believe me- I don't care who disagrees- there is a difference between a mother and mom and father and dad. Moms and dads nurture. Fathers and mothers nature(do whats done in nature- reproduce). Hopefully, the bio mom will relax enough to let the threatening feelings diminish and daughter will be allowed to express her true feelings. But it could take a while.

ladyshy

 
Old 10-04-2004, 06:22 AM   #6
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littlegal HB User
Re: Soon to be stepmom - need advice!!

Thanks to everyone's response. I do try to be nice to the bio mom. I even ask how she is doing, chit-chat on the phone about the daughter, etc. My boyfriend and I have been together for 3 threes - I did worry about how she would take me spending time with her daughter. Believe me - I went through harder times the first year together. She thought of everything possible to keep me from her daughter. I gave her time and patience and understanding. I would think after three years - she can lighten up though. She has another man in her life. I hope she is very happy and moves on, but why can't she be happy for us. I have put myself in her shoes many times about how she feels. I can't keep doing that - or my life won't get no where.

 
Old 10-04-2004, 07:08 AM   #7
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goody2shuz HB Usergoody2shuz HB User
Re: Soon to be stepmom - need advice!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by littlegal
Thanks to everyone's response. I do try to be nice to the bio mom. I even ask how she is doing, chit-chat on the phone about the daughter, etc. My boyfriend and I have been together for 3 threes - I did worry about how she would take me spending time with her daughter. Believe me - I went through harder times the first year together. She thought of everything possible to keep me from her daughter. I gave her time and patience and understanding. I would think after three years - she can lighten up though. She has another man in her life. I hope she is very happy and moves on, but why can't she be happy for us. I have put myself in her shoes many times about how she feels. I can't keep doing that - or my life won't get no where.
You need to put yourself in bio mom's shoes for a minute. Imagine you & your boyfriend have a child split up & then he marries again. You are still your child's mother & he is the father. All decisions should be made by the parents....the stepparents job is to be supportive of those decisions made and to insure that the child has a healthy & happy relationship with each parent. You can be close to this child but the first step is in respecting the child's bio parents by taking a step back. Hope this helps a little....my niece adjusted so nicely to her parents divorce because she had a stepmother who cared enough to do what I described above....Goody

 
Old 10-04-2004, 07:21 AM   #8
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littlegal HB User
Re: Soon to be stepmom - need advice!!

I do step back - but that is also a problem. I can stay completely out of it and some how the bio mom drags my name into. It's my fault if something goes wrong!! I understand what you are saying. I do let my boyfriend and the bio mom handle things. When things are going on that involves me, it's alittle hard to "just" stay out of it. There is a lot going on that I didn't mention, if I did, I would be here all day. Remember, I've been in this relationship for 3 years - a lot can happen in that length of time. I have been here for this little girl, because she has had a tough time. Her mother didn't want her a year ago, hardly called to check on her. I helped her through school, homework, etc. Now she is back with her mother, it's alittle hard to not care and go back to "not" being a "full time" mother again.

 
Old 10-04-2004, 07:56 AM   #9
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Re: Soon to be stepmom - need advice!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by littlegal
I have been here for this little girl, because she has had a tough time. Her mother didn't want her a year ago, hardly called to check on her. I helped her through school, homework, etc.
This is great....you are being supportive when you need to be and assisting the parents in raising their child. Always remember that your role is supporting the dad in doing his part of the job as a future stepmother. He really should be assisting her with homework and getting her through these tough times. This little girl can have a close relationship with you & her mother. Never put her in the position to have to choose between you two. If she feels she cannot have a relationship with you because her mom is putting the pressure on...take the pressure off and tell her that her mom may feel that you are taking her place and reassurre her that you won't and can't because her mom will always be her mom and that you respect that. Never put her moter down because it is putting her down in doing so. This little girl has enough of a tough time going on here and the best thing for her to see in her life is the two adults in her life getting along. If bio mom drags you into it....ignore it or have your boyfriend handle it. Face it....your boyfriend & his ex are going to be forever tied in raising their child and nobody should ever stand in the way of it. It can work out if all parties maturely realize that mom & dad must make decisions together for the welfare of this child....Goody

 
Old 10-04-2004, 08:23 AM   #10
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littlegal HB User
Re: Soon to be stepmom - need advice!!

Thanks for the advice. Although the dad and bio mom has their own meetings (without me or the boyfriend) to talk about what is best for the daughter. She says we need to get along but it seems that she doesn't go on her own words. I do tell the daughter that I'm not her "real" mother but I am always there for her. I believe she tries to have a good relationship with her bio mom and I know it's hard for the daughter to feel that she has to take sides. We don't ask her questions about what goes on in their home, unless she tells us on her own. Some stories are terrifying, but we try not to push the issue. I only want the child to know that it's ok to trust me and come to me - I'm not taking her away from her bio mom - she knows that.

 
Old 01-14-2005, 09:53 AM   #11
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Unhappy Re: Soon to be stepmom - need advice!!

I've been a step-mom to 5 kids for 16 years. If you ask me, it will only get worse. My husband and I love eachother very much, and for the most part even get along with bio mom. But it's been an absolute nightmare. I believe it could possibly work IF you have custody of the child, but that's not a guarantee. I've bitten my tongue since day 1, when the kids would ask, "Why does mommy hate you?" Now they're older and they realize what bio mom's been like, but it's too late. She's put so much stuff in their heads that no matter what we do, it's never enough. And this is all with their Dad being VERY involved. I can't tell you what to do, but I vowed to myself that if I ever heard of someone marrying another with a child, I'm going to tell it like it is. Granted, some work it out, but it's truly never the way it should be in the best interest of the children.

 
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