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Why does BioMom like setting up dissapointment? - Page 3

post #41 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by JSMa View Post
I'm not stepping in... At least it was never my decision to.

DSD's Mom asked for my email once to email me some pictures of DSD which I thought was really nice of her!

DH doesn't go on the computer, it's not his thing... so he does not have an email.

Then DSD's Mom started emailing all kinds of things, for schedules and what not and for discipline things that she wanted carried over to our house. I never wanted to be in the middle... and I told DH that.

But he says I'm as much a parent as they are and am helping to raise DSD as much as they are and he was okay with me getting the emails. I never respond to them until I talk to DH about them first so we are on same page and then we send a response. I don't just step in, and I never ever go to his ex with things, if it is us that has a question, I make him call her.
I was in this exact same position from the start with the ex. It allowed her and DH to almost totally cut off communication with one another leaving me the stress of handling arrangements with her. I think it was easier for both DH and her to have me do so they didn't have to deal with one another. I put up with this until last year when I just could not take her anymore.

We had a major blowout with her saying I was trying to be her mom. Never was I trying to be that in anyway. I just allowed myself to be put in the position where roles were confused by all parties. Once I completely removed myself from that position and made DH and her work out their issues, life got much easier. My feelings have not been hurt by her since because I stay out of it.
post #42 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by JSMa View Post
You know... I'm thinking here...


Is it just because I'm the StepMom??


If your DC was invited to a birthday party the same day as your new baby's shower... would you make arrangments for your DC to go to the birthday party instead of being with their family celebrating the upcoming arrival of their new sibling???

I'd really love an honest answer here.
As the custodial mom and having added to my family.... yes, our daughter went to her own "special" thing thing while my friends and family hosted a gift fest for the baby. Aly was older though... she was 5.

Being part of a blended family means letting go of the small stuff... and keeping in mind that it all might just be small stuff.
post #43 of 89
Personally, I'd stick with dsd going to the shower, particularly because it's a blended family - because it's all the more important to include children who aren't with you full-time in family events, especially with a new baby on the way.

Birthday parties are fun, but you want to create a whole bunch of happy memories of inclusion and belonging at your house, so that she'll feel a part of the family as it grows.

If it were going to be a very dull grown-ups only shower, that would be different, but it sounds like a chance for her to get together with all her cousins and have a good time.

With my daughter, sometimes when she gets an invite to a party, it conflicts with another activity and she doesn't go. It's fine, we call and give our regrets, we plan to get the kids together another time, we drop off a little something, whatever. Hey, when your kid gets birthday invites from practically everyone in the class, of course you're going to miss some! But a party to celebrate the coming birth of a sibling is something special.
post #44 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by JSMa View Post
I'm not stepping in... At least it was never my decision to.

DSD's Mom asked for my email once to email me some pictures of DSD which I thought was really nice of her!

DH doesn't go on the computer, it's not his thing... so he does not have an email.

Then DSD's Mom started emailing all kinds of things, for schedules and what not and for discipline things that she wanted carried over to our house. I never wanted to be in the middle... and I told DH that.

But he says I'm as much a parent as they are and am helping to raise DSD as much as they are and he was okay with me getting the emails. I never respond to them until I talk to DH about them first so we are on same page and then we send a response. I don't just step in, and I never ever go to his ex with things, if it is us that has a question, I make him call her.
I'm not part of a blended family - got to the post through "New Posts" - but I had to respond to this because it reminds me of something my MIL once did.

She was staying with us and helping out when my second dd was brand new, and I was in the awkward post-partum stage where you always seem to be at least partly naked and trying to nurse, or shower, or change or whatever, and in her efforts to help, MIL kept walking in on me while I was undressed. After about the seventh time this happened, MIL could see I was upset, so she told me, "It's OK sweetie - your nudity doesn't bother me."

Which was a completely pointless thing to say, because her walking in on me nekkid DID bother ME.

So what I'm trying to say in this extended AAM analogy is that it's great that your DH doesn't mind you handling the email from his ex, but you apparently DO mind, so he should handle it himself. You can co-parent your DSD without being the primary contact person for her mom, and it sounds like you would be happier that way.
post #45 of 89
I didn't read every single answer in depth, so I apologize if I am reapeating people... I did try to at least scan everyone's...

I absolutely would have your step-daughter at your shower. It has been planned as a family event, not just a time that you get together with your girlfriends and open presents for the baby while she sits off to the side playing with the buckle on her Mary Janes. It is something important to your family, to your step daughter, to you. Preschoolers live in the moment... when she is there she will not be pining away for a birthday party.

Learning about making choices, managing time, and handling disappointment are all life skills that we all have to learn. Missing one of the 20 birthday parties a year of the children in her class will not traumatize her in the long run... my children don't attend every single birthday party they are invited to or go to every playdate they are invited to. Blended family or not, there are always times when we have to choose between two events that we want to go to, and we can talk to the kids about why we are making the choices we make.

As for the co-parenting aspect of it, I think the parent who gets the invitation should just be in the habit of informing the other parent and let them decide whether or not she should go. If she gets and invitation from school that falls on your weekend, her mom should just drop you an email that says "I just wanted to let you know that she so-and-so has a birthday party. Here are the details, and the number to RSVP if you want to go." If your step-daughter brings up an invitation to either parent, they should both just be in the habit of saying "I'll have to check our calendar and see what is happening that weekend."

At least that is my opinion on it all!
post #46 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by aricha View Post
As for the co-parenting aspect of it, I think the parent who gets the invitation should just be in the habit of informing the other parent and let them decide whether or not she should go. If she gets and invitation from school that falls on your weekend, her mom should just drop you an email that says "I just wanted to let you know that she so-and-so has a birthday party. Here are the details, and the number to RSVP if you want to go." If your step-daughter brings up an invitation to either parent, they should both just be in the habit of saying "I'll have to check our calendar and see what is happening that weekend."


This is what I've been trying to say, but you said it in a much clearer way.
post #47 of 89
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by aricha View Post
As for the co-parenting aspect of it, I think the parent who gets the invitation should just be in the habit of informing the other parent and let them decide whether or not she should go. If she gets and invitation from school that falls on your weekend, her mom should just drop you an email that says "I just wanted to let you know that she so-and-so has a birthday party. Here are the details, and the number to RSVP if you want to go." If your step-daughter brings up an invitation to either parent, they should both just be in the habit of saying "I'll have to check our calendar and see what is happening that weekend."

At least that is my opinion on it all!

I think that would be really nice. DH has been trying to get his ex to involve us more in the life of his DD. He has asked for school reports, and I will ask for them at school when I pick DSD up as well... but we don't always get them, even at the school they generally do not have enough copies to give us.

He asks to be told of when her appointments are and would like to go to some, has even offered to take her to some, but his ex never lets him.

Same goes for parties... we are just never told about them. Sometimes we feel very disconnected with DSD's life. We talk to her and ask her about her week when she is here... but well, she is 4. lol So we don't get the full picture of anything.

Maybe this is something DH can try to talk to with his ex again. We both wanted to be more involved with her dance as well, and were really upset last year that his ex never even told us that they were looking for parent volunteers to help. I personally would have loved to do this as I helped with dance recitals through my teen years, keeping the little ones occupied while they waited their turn to go on stage.


I'm feeling sort of emotional this morning... and am thinking about talking to DH about inviting his ex to the shower... then pending on when the other party is over, they could leave a little early to go to the other party? I don't know how comfortable he would be to have his ex there though... nor how comfortable my family will be... And this could be really early morning bad ideas. lol
post #48 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by pinksprklybarefoot View Post
Some of you might be forgetting that there are going to be other children at this shower - children that the OP's dsd likes to play with and hasn't seen in a while.

Also, I agree that the suggestion that the child should be shuffled back and forth is unreasonable. She'll spend two hours in the car.

I think that some of us need to remember this part of the UA when responding in this thread:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ione View Post
That said, what would I have been supposed to do if we lived in the same town or close enough that she could go to birthday parties for her friends during her dad's time?

Say, "no, you can't go because it's your dad's weekend"? No good: I'd be accused of making the dad into the bad guy.

Say, "it's your dad's weekend. You have to ask him." or "I'm not sure, I'll ask your dad about it"? Neither is good: again, I could easily be accused of setting him up to be the bad guy. Because I can't know for certain what he has planned, and he could very well have something planned that I don't know about. Or forgot about, because quite frankly I'm not my ex's social secretary anymore.

Say, "sure. I'll tell your dad he's gonna miss his time."? No good. Probably the worst of the lot. Family is more important than friends' birthday parties--especially her father.

Say 'no' and leave it at that and not even tell her father about the invitation? No good either: she does have a social life that goes beyond her parents and that would be excluding her father from a fatherly role in her social life. It's his time, and therefore his decision as to whether or not to allow her to go. Even if I'm 100% certain I know what he'll say, I don't think that gives me the right to make the decision for him.

So, tell me, what am I supposed to say and do exactly?

I'm not saying the mom in your specific situation is not being inappropriate or difficult or whatever. She very well could be. But she could also simply be trying to do her best in a confusing situation.

What would you have wanted her to say?
How about, "You already have plans that day?"

Quote:
Originally Posted by JSMa View Post
It just follows her patterns. Anytime she drops DSD off she gets her all worked up telling her how much she is going to miss her, then DSD tells us over and over again that we need to take her home because her Mommy misses her too much. Note, DSD never actually says she misses her Mom, it's always that her Mom misses her too much....
I know how you feel. My stepdaughter's Mother and your stepdaughter's Mother are cut from the same cloth.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mammastar2 View Post
Personally, I'd stick with dsd going to the shower, particularly because it's a blended family - because it's all the more important to include children who aren't with you full-time in family events, especially with a new baby on the way.

Birthday parties are fun, but you want to create a whole bunch of happy memories of inclusion and belonging at your house, so that she'll feel a part of the family as it grows.
Exactly.
post #49 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by JSMa View Post
but we don't always get them, even at the school they generally do not have enough copies to give us.

He asks to be told of when her appointments are and would like to go to some, has even offered to take her to some, but his ex never lets him.

Same goes for parties... we are just never told about them.

wanted to be more involved with her dance as well, and were really upset last year that his ex never even told us that they were looking for parent volunteers to help.
I think to get more involved, your husband can't allow people to treat him like a second class citizen. It can be really hard, but it is also possible. My husband, living 3000 miles away from our step-daughter most of the year, had a parent teacher-conference, received copies of everything that came home from school, attended most regular doctor and dentist appointments. It takes a lot of work, but I think it is well worth it.

Does her preschool have parent cubbies or files that go home? They can set him up with his own. You or your husband can call the dance studio and let them know that he (you) are very involved in her life, even if you aren't necessarily very visible to everyone, and you want to check in and see if there are announcements or other things you should be aware of. Maybe they have an email newsletter or a mailing list you can be on. Find out when would be a good time to call and chat with her teacher every now and then about how it is going.

If he has the right to be at appointments, "not being allowed to go" shouldn't even happen. It's his daughter. He loves her and cares about her well being. Her mother doesn't have a monopoly on information about her. If it is something that is important to him, he should fight for it.

I'm saying this all from a been-there-done-that place... my step-daughters mother thought for a while that she was mom and that was that, and my husband had a right to information and access only on her say-so. It wasn't an easy opinion to change, and sometimes it seemed like his insistance was doing more harm than good... It really seemed that once he truly started seeing himself as an equally legitimate parent, leaving him out just was no longer an option.

Quote:
I'm feeling sort of emotional this morning... and am thinking about talking to DH about inviting his ex to the shower... then pending on when the other party is over, they could leave a little early to go to the other party? I don't know how comfortable he would be to have his ex there though... nor how comfortable my family will be... And this could be really early morning bad ideas. lol
Why are you feeling like she has to go to this birthday party at the expense of your family event? Is it her best friend's party? Are they going to Disney World? Step-mothers sacrifice so much of their lives for the good of other people, and you have to draw the line somewhere! I don't even see the conflict here between a big family party celebrating her much loved and anticipated baby sister, and what is likely a party for a preschool classmate she may or may not even play with on a regular basis.

Repeat after me: "We already have plans."
post #50 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by aricha View Post

Repeat after me: "We already have plans."
This.

My parents never ever EVER let me break existing plans for "better" plans. (And I did not grow up in a blended or divorced family.) Yeah, I could miss a regular swimming lesson for a party or something, but never plans that would inconvenience other people if I changed them.

In fact, when I was 16 and canceled hanging out with a girlfriend in favor of a date, I got the lecture (even though my friends and I had standing agreements that dates trump hanging out).
post #51 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by JSMa View Post

This isn't the first instance of her either setting something up on our weekend for DSD and us telling her no she can't go, or telling DSD about an event and getting her all excited, but then saying well we have to check with Daddy and Jen... so we always end up looking like the bad parents who don't want her doing anything... which isn't true!! But we only get DSD EOW... That time is our's, period. Set stuff up on the 9 billion other days you have with her. :
Sorry. I know how that feels. The latest for us was she planned a trip to Disneyland during my husband's one week Christmas visitation. Exactly when he's supposed to have his son. He said she could have him and would just switch with her. She was hoping for a fight. She didn't get one. So she's looking in other places...
post #52 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by mammastar2 View Post
Personally, I'd stick with dsd going to the shower, particularly because it's a blended family - because it's all the more important to include children who aren't with you full-time in family events, especially with a new baby on the way.

Birthday parties are fun, but you want to create a whole bunch of happy memories of inclusion and belonging at your house, so that she'll feel a part of the family as it grows.

If it were going to be a very dull grown-ups only shower, that would be different, but it sounds like a chance for her to get together with all her cousins and have a good time.

With my daughter, sometimes when she gets an invite to a party, it conflicts with another activity and she doesn't go. It's fine, we call and give our regrets, we plan to get the kids together another time, we drop off a little something, whatever. Hey, when your kid gets birthday invites from practically everyone in the class, of course you're going to miss some! But a party to celebrate the coming birth of a sibling is something special.
I highlighted what I thought are the most important points in your post. Someone else earlier said that JSMa's DD wouldn't 'know' that her sister was at her shower. But this isn't so much about the baby knowing, it's about the 4 year old knowing about her sister, bonding with her before she's born, feeling included in the family, celebrating her sister, being with family, being excited about soon having a little sister, etc.
post #53 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by mammastar2 View Post
Personally, I'd stick with dsd going to the shower, particularly because it's a blended family - because it's all the more important to include children who aren't with you full-time in family events, especially with a new baby on the way.

Birthday parties are fun, but you want to create a whole bunch of happy memories of inclusion and belonging at your house, so that she'll feel a part of the family as it grows.
This post really spoke to me, especially the bolded parts. I also found this on new posts. I do not have a blended family now, but I grew up with different households and spent time with my dad, stepmother, and stepsisters. Birthday parties are a dime a dozen. The rest of her childhood will always have another birthday party to attend. The things she will actually remember and treasure is family time and feeling a part of her dad's family as much as her family with her mother. Your shower doesn't sound like a traditional baby shower, but a large family celebration. Sometimes family comes before preschool friends' parties. If we were talking about a teenager, there would be an entirely different dynamic to consider. But I think it is perfectly ok for parents to say to the child, in a pp's words, "I'm sorry, but we already have plans."
post #54 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by JSMa View Post
Ione,

You are right... I may be jumping the gun a little on this one, and honestly I hope I am. I hope she hasn't told DSD about the party and that she was just saying that in hopes to get us to agree to the party...

It just follows her patterns. Anytime she drops DSD off she gets her all worked up telling her how much she is going to miss her, then DSD tells us over and over again that we need to take her home because her Mommy misses her too much. Note, DSD never actually says she misses her Mom, it's always that her Mom misses her too much...

She made a big deal in front of us how DH and I were going on our honeymoon without DSD...

And she made it a big ordeal to tell DSD I can't pick her up anymore because of her sister in my belly.

It's just very sad and challenging to deal with.
Ya know, I see your point about the shower and understand that you may be hurt but statements like this make me think you should be looking a little more closely and fairly at the situation. It's OK for DSD's mom to talk about how much she will miss her and have you considered that DSD really does miss her mom but does not want to phrase it that way? Kids know a lot more then we give them credit for and it comes across clearly in your posts how you feel about bio mom and your dh too. My daughter is very sensitive to people's moods, even at 3 she picks up on more then people would think. DSD may be phrasing it that way to avoid disapproval and conflict from you and dh...just a thought you may want to consider?
post #55 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by lovemybubus View Post
Ya know, I see your point about the shower and understand that you may be hurt but statements like this make me think you should be looking a little more closely and fairly at the situation. It's OK for DSD's mom to talk about how much she will miss her and have you considered that DSD really does miss her mom but does not want to phrase it that way? Kids know a lot more then we give them credit for and it comes across clearly in your posts how you feel about bio mom and your dh too. My daughter is very sensitive to people's moods, even at 3 she picks up on more then people would think. DSD may be phrasing it that way to avoid disapproval and conflict from you and dh...just a thought you may want to consider?
I'm sure dsd does miss her mom-that is normal. However, I have seen with my dsd that whenever her mom starts in on saying that she misses her, that she can't wait to see her, that she will be coming home in x hours, etc. etc. it inevitably leads to dsd getting upset and parroting back whatever her mom had said. Now, my dsd will often say she misses her mom, but she ONLY gets upset about it when her mom had been going on and on about how much she misses her. Of course her mom misses her-I would be devestated if I had to leave my dd EOW. BUT--this burden should not be laid on a child. Saying I love you and have a great time is more than sufficient. Dsd shouldn't have to feel responsible for her mom's happiness/loneliness/etc. The parent's job here isn't to tell the child how much she is missed, but how happy she is that the child is happy.
post #56 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by greenemami View Post
The parent's job here isn't to tell the child how much she is missed, but how happy she is that the child is happy.
I agree with this. I'm not in a blended situation yet but chances are good it will happen one day. I won't like sending DS off every other weekend, but I'll try to do it with good cheer and let him enjoy his time there.

But boy ... I hate seeing the terms "biomom" and "birthmom" used around here. I hope if we end up in a blended family situation that my DS has a loving stepmother who he bonds with, but I'm still going to be his mother, plain and simple. I know we're online and qualifiers can simplify things, but that just seems unnecessary. Maybe I'm too raw from my own situation.
post #57 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kiernan View Post
... But boy ... I hate seeing the terms "biomom" and "birthmom" used around here.
I agree. The term makes it sound like the child is adopted. Those are the exact words used by adoptees. I agree the qualifiers are sometimes necesssary but in a blended situation the child only has one mother. The exception would be female same sex partnerships.
post #58 of 89
There was actually a HUGE thread about the biomom usage awhile back. It's locked or I would bump it. I'll look for it later when I get a chance.

And JSMa, I wouldn't say it is because you are a stepmom. I would say it is because you are in a blended family--one that is still in fairly early stages of blending. There are obviously still resentments flying around--and I think fear on your part about equity for your child. Many posts of yours end up coming down to what will be fair for your biological child. Your mom's comment immediately led you there.
post #59 of 89
In defense of JSMA....I really think the DH in the equation has set up a situation where it's natural that she feels there is less for her new baby. Not being willing to shop for the new baby and spending a bunch of money that's not absolutely needed on new school clothes for DSD. I'm sure it's a hard situation.

That said- if someone else was willing to get DSD to the birthday party I would be cool with her attending. I wouldn't leave my own baby shower or spare DH to do it though.
post #60 of 89
If I were in the situation, I would let my husband handle it. It sometimes gets too close for comfort in my own situation...so I let him make those decesions.
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