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He gets so angry when we need to talk about dss

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
Now, I know some other people on this board do the same thing, but please try not to judge me, I'm pretty down over this and just need to get it out...

My SO gets so angry with me whenever there's a probelm with dss or something we need to talk about concerning him. Especially if it's something bothersome, or something that needs discipline (I don't have specifics in mind, but this happens regularly)..

I get really hurt and upset. If I have to 'complain' about my DD, he will let me rant, rave, cry, be angry, be hurt, and just say anything I need to, and he's so supportive and understanding. He's just great about it.

But if I say one sentence about dss that isn't 100% the most positive thing in the world, he gets incredibly angry...

How does this help anyone?!?! I'm supposed to act like dss is the perfect golden child? I can't. He's not perfect, noone is. I'm certainly not, and neither is SO or DD. NOONE is. However, I'm supposed ot act like dss is, and it's hurting badly.

I posted something in the Childhood Years forum a few minutes ago about dss's constant crotch grabbing. SO and I have talked about this several times, and have *always* been on the same page about it, until tonight. I mention it briefly, and he says 'well, I'll just cut his hands off then', and yells, and gets quite angry.

Maybe he feels I'm harping/nagging, and maybe I am, however, when I do this concerning DD, he's sooooooooo patient and supportive

I understand it's just defensiveness, but how does he expect me to raise this child with him if I'm not allowed to treat him as my own? How come I can't complain about something if I need or want to.

It's after midnight and I'm just sitting here crying over him jumping at me like that... How can I better handle this?
post #2 of 11
I'l admit I am the touchy parent who has a hard time with talking to my husband about my boys.

I know it is not helping our family, I've even posted here about how to lighten up and let him parent. But often when he says something about the boys, I just take it so personally. Like you said, I can't let him complain about the difficulties of being a parent to them with out feeling so attacked.

Some things that help us are-

Writing it down, if it is just one or two specific behaviors that are driving him crazy, if I get it in writing then it is a lot easier for me to see that those are annoying behaviors and think of somethings we can do about them.

Asking him to complain about parenting instead of about my kids. Hopefully someday, I'll be better able to hear his rants and understand that (step) parenting is just a hard thing to do, but for now if he can complain about it in general it is much easier. Even if it is stuff like "children can sure be annoying", or "I just wish we could know we are doing the right thing."

It is also much worse when we are all tired or sick or hungry. The past couple of weeks dh hasn't had any days off, and has been working almost 80 hours a week so he is tired and cranky, and of course I am tired (I am pregnant) and cranky, so the boys are cranky. And we all snap and fight more. It helps me to realize that somethings aren't here to stay, and that there are other reasons for all of us being a little more critical or touchy.
post #3 of 11
My DH is the same way. Last night I was telling him DSS "instructs" himself when he's talking to himself and I thought it was odd. He got defensive real quick. I'm not sure what to tell you since I have yet to figure anything out as well! :LOL I think it's cause even though you are a parent to them it feels like an intrusion....like your mom or a stranger or a friend telling you how to raise your child because they don't feel it's right.

As for the crotch grabbing thing my brothers did this ALL the time! I am being literal there too. It never stopped and not only was it annoying but it weas groiss to have their help with anything. I'm not sure how old you DSS is but I think it's a pahse they go through. My brothers no longer do it and harping on them to stop didn't help. Hopefully he'll outgrow it soon.
post #4 of 11
OMG the "crotch grabbing" is so ....annoying! We've told the boys they can do it all they want when they are in private. When they're with us, get the hand out of the pants! :LOL

Anyhoo, I think since our children are a part of us, we get defensive when someone *critisizes* them. He may feel like you are attacking him - or that b/c dss is "his" child you are blaming him. (which of course, you are not)

I would bet that its happening on a sub-consience level as well.

This is what happened with dh and I. Anytime I said anything about his kids or he about mine, we would both get our backs up. Somewhere along the way we realized this and its much better now. We started to always start the "complaint" (for lack of a better word) with a positive note. Like, "I love that girl, but she really needs to stop with the baby talk. Its driving me crazy!" Or reaffirming that the child is ours - regardless of biology. For instance, "our son cant get enough of his penis, can he?" And most importantly, humour!

I also wanted to say I'm proud of you for asking for help.

Hang in there!
post #5 of 11
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the advice everyone. I'm working on it, I am, it can just be so rough. I do treat him like my own, but SO doesn't seem ready for that, it doesn't seem.

I do let him complain about my DD, and just talk with him, like 'okay, what can we do about that?', or 'what do you feel a good compromise would be?', and our parenting relationship regarding DD is wonderful. But regarding dss, it's like I'm not even allowed to have thoughts, or opinions or anything about him or his behaviors...

Anyhow, about 20 minutes after the angry talk, SO called (had gone to work), to say he loved me, and he's just been overly stressed about work and money... *sighs*

I understand it, but he acts this way even when in the best of moods... So, I just need to figure out how to better deal with this... I'm not gonna stop loving my dss, therefore not gonna stop having concerns, thoughts, feelings and opinions, and quite honestly, I do think SO needs to learn how to deal with that...
post #6 of 11
I'm wondering if he's having difficulties processing his own feeling for ds. Maybe he does feel the same way (eg. annoyed) but feels guilty for feeling that way? (wow. that was alot of feel :LOL ) Just a thought as to why he feels okay venting about one child and not the other.

I'm not gonna stop loving my dss, therefore not gonna stop having concerns, thoughts, feelings and opinions, and quite honestly, I do think SO needs to learn how to deal with that...
I agree, he does need to deal with that. It also sounds like he needs to let you in a little regarding parenting him. Good luck, its tough all around, isnt it?

post #7 of 11
I can kind of get what he means. My dh and I have big arguments if I tell him about a situation the boys and I have been in which is now resolved, and he then goes and starts another conversation/ disciplining when from everyone else's point of view, it's now over. He finds it very hard to hear a problem and do nothing.
From my point of view, I've really struggled to accept that I don't have to do everything myself- that parenting is no longer a solo job. To give him this much trust and this much control took me a long, long time and he had to work phenomenally hard to prove to me that he was in this for the long haul.
In your situation, I'd try and find the cash for relationship counselling. I know you are working phenomenally hard on making a go of your new family (and it is a really tough job- I'm so grateful I have no stepchildren) but sometimes from what you say, it feels like your dh is struggling to meet you.
As far as the crotch-grabbing goes, make sure there's a stool next to the sink so your dss can wash his hands properly, and frequently. It's one of the really annoying things that you would never, ever notice unless you were a mummy of a little boy, though I know that doesn't help you much. Could you regard it as your rite of passage, maybe?
post #8 of 11
Thread Starter 
I agree, we should go to counseling. When we first became involved, we'd talked about going to counseling just to learn how to parent our children together. As time went on, SO figured we didn't need it, then it came down to him thinking we couldn't afford it.

Just last month I was looking for a counselor and he decided that he doesn't want to see one at all, but that I could keep looking for one to see myself. While I think that might help, I think we both need to go as well...

As for the sink, dss is MUCH big enough to reach the sink himself. He just doesn't wash his hands, even when we remind him, or ask him to, it's kind of a chore in his eyes. (same as showering, brushing teeth, anything to do with hygiene)
post #9 of 11

Keep Your Chin Up!

Sorry you are going through this.
I know it can be tough at times. My bf and I we
pretty much see eye to eye as far as discipline goes. I think that is part of the beauty of our relationship that we trust each other with each other as well as our children. If I thought for a mere moment that I couldn't trust him to parent my own kids. He wouldn't be involved. But I do, he treats them all equal and we are on the same level when it comes to the girls.

Keep communicating, that is a major key in any relationship.
I know in the beginning, I felt "uncomfortable" to discipline our oldest. But it came naturally. I began to not only be able to set ground rules, and healthy behaviour (which was expected) - I was also winning respect from her. She knows, that I love her, and that part of love requires discipline along with all the other things. We are never harsh, mean, cruel (I am very sensitive when I deal with her because I knew how hard it was for me to adjust to my step-mom trying to discipline me). I felt she "had" no right to. She wasn't my mom, and was never going to be my mom. Yep, that was my attitude. But things with our oldest daughter, is very different. I think she knows without a doubt, that I love her. I would do anything for her. And trust is a major focus in our family.

I wish you the best of luck! I feel for you, if I was in your situation I would be down right in tears. Because if you love your child, you want to train them up right, and to become a great member of society. Love is all part of discipline. You teach your child - don't do drugs. If they do, they have consquences. Consquences hopefully teaches them, to make wiser decisions, and see that their wrong choices can lead to very devasating outcomes. So to prevent them from getting hurt, you punish them so that they will only feel half the pain instead of the entire painful blow that such an addiction would lead up to. I am sure you follow. Anyhow, keep up the good work! You are doing awesome! And your DSS is so blessed to have a step mom like you ! What more can a child ask for? You are doing the right thing, you are doing everything that a mom should do, and you have no reason to feel guilty. Your only crime, is loving him so incredibly much!

post #10 of 11
Thread Starter 
Thanks for that post Kate, I really needed that

I really wish my SO could better see it that way, he sees it as me saying he's not a good father, or that he did a bad job until I got here. I'm not saying that, feeling that, or thinking that... I just have concerns of my own, and no matter WHO the biomother of the child is, I'd still feel/think the same... He doesn't see that yet though...

I'm gonna keep working at this, and keep asking SO to see a counselor with me, just to talk about parenting together at the very least...

It just seems so much like he's scared to let someone else parent his kid. When biomom was around, she didn't do much, it was SO doing the parenting. Then they divorced and SO raised him by himself, very very little visits from biomom even.

And now, dss is 9, and here I am more than willing and more than able to help parent this kid, and it's like SO isn't willing to let go of being the 'sole parent'...

I just gotta keep proving to him that I do love dss, I suppose... It will happen, right? He will understand that someday, right?
post #11 of 11


I know that I was a single parent for along time
before my bf came into the picture. Bit by bit, he will
let his guard down. Trusting someone with yourself is easier than trusting someone with your child. You know how when the saying goes," I don't care if it happens to me, but don't do it to my child?" Maybe he is having a struggle, and you will have to be patient, listen, and keep talking. Trusting you with his child is probably a very big step for him. But just let him know you are there, he doesn't have to do this alone anymore, that your hands are there for him as well as his child. And you wanted to be apart of his child's life just as much as you want to be apart of his own life. Relax, don't get too tense about it. Everything has its time and place. Be gentle to yourself hun, you are doing great! No doubt that you aren't a great mom! You just want to be everything as he is everything to his son (that isn't wrong!) s

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