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#1 of 13 Old 10-04-2012, 08:41 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Ill start off by saying I am just as my user name states.... lost. I feel like my entire life has been put on huge hold and is spinning out of my control in a way that I may never regain control. I understand this is an exaggeration and I'm sure at some point control will be regained. But I am living through my BF's divorce and custody battle. His ex, two years ago, took their child (now 4) and moved several hours away, announced that she did not want to be with him (he was kicked out of the house and living with is parents.) He was obviously hurt and felt powerless. He has several family members that fought and lost hard in a custody battle and was terrified to go through it.

Without going into too many details well just fast forward two years, We have been friends for several years as we work together and had several friends in common.  I don't know why but he felt powerless and was basically living as her punching bag. He gave her all his money (he works two jobs) and basically lived to see his son on the weekends when he made the drive several hours to them. During his visits she makes him take them places, out to eat, movies, games, fairs, zoos and the like. He pays for everything and in the end has never been allowed real alone time with his child, by the end of his visit she is yelling telling him he is the worst thing that ever happened to her, that he is trash and well... every bad word there is.

When she found out about us, 1 month after we started seeing eachother... really casually. She freaked out. He had moved back into the house and was paying all the bills. Her house... she drove out here threw all of his things on the front porch in the rain. That was 4 months ago. We have since moved into our own apartment and they filed for divorce a month ago.  She refers to me as his whore. I understand the anger but really she abandoned him over two years ago and took his child, seriously, was he supposed to just be her puppy for ever!?

My largest problem at this point is I am struggling with feelings of dislike (never wanna say hate) for his child. The kid is only 4 and an innocent in all of this. I met his son a year ago when he came to work with my Bf. We were just friends at the time, I spent a few min talking to him and I get along with children just fine (I am an art teacher)

But My Bf has said from the beginning that I will always loose, his son comes first and he will always win. I expressed to him that saying things like that are hurtful because I am not in competition with him. The love he has for his son is not the love I want and if his son did not come first I would not love him like I do. But during the move He came across his photo album of when his son was born. I now have burned into my mind the visual of my Bf, his newborn son laying in his Ex's arms... His hand on hers looking lovingly into her face holding her in his arms..... It kills me! I cant even look at a picture of his son now! They make me angry! It feels irrational and nonsensical. But I just don't know what to do!

His son still thinks he lives with "grandma and grandpa" IE.. my bf's son thinks he lives with his parents. He does not know his father has his own apartment, in which there is a room set up just for him, I tried to make it comfy. I got toys, kids sheets, a bright colored lamp. The main bathroom is also decorated just for him in a cars theme... I'm trying to do everything I can think of so his son has a safe comfy place to come and I didn't even know his son had no clue about the apartment!!!! I haven't even met him as "daddy's friend" and now, after the pictures and emotions that came with it I'm dreading it.

I cant tell my Bf this, i know it will crush him... I really needed someplace to vent. I thank you so much and sorry for the length. I really want to make this work. I just cant help but feel like his son is going to hate me because I'm sure his Ex just wont be able to help herself but call me names in front of him. I even gave my Bf the option.... when she kicked him out of her house she tried to act all hurt like he was cheating on her. I know that legally they are married so yes legally its true. But not emotionally. They had not been together for years. I told him I would give him no guilt, I would walk away and be the supportive friend if he wanted to work on his relationship and family... I made the offer several times as a matter of fact, But he said no. He found his wife and it isn't her. That is sweet but hurts at the same time..... she is still legally his wife. I'm so lost.

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#2 of 13 Old 10-04-2012, 10:54 PM
 
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Yeah, this is kind of a mess. But it doesn't have to be your mess, not entirely. Your dp needs a divorce, parenting plan, and child support order, asap. He has to straighten this out. There need to be some firm boundaries around your relationship and household, and that starts with legally ending his marriage and establishing visitation with his son. His son needs to know his parents aren't together! Then you need to work on your own mental boundaries, for your own sanity. You can't control his ex, or what she says, so if I were you I would just be determined to ignore her existence as much as possible. If you don't talk to her, see her, or hear stories about her shenanigans, there's not much that her existence in the world can do to disturb your peace of mind.

 

Your reaction to seeing those pictures may not be entirely out of proportion, if things aren't as over with his ex as they should be. Maybe you won't feel totally secure it's over with her until they get divorced. But if you know it's over, well, we all have a past. Unless you're 16, it's unlikely you'll find any guy that doesn't have an ex. And when the guy has kids, ex's never go away 100%. The past is the past, and with time it will be easier to let those loving family pictures stay in the past where they belong. The now is a little boy who, as you say, is an innocent bystander in all of this. When you start having him over, concentrate on getting to know him on his own merits, not as dp's son, and especially not as a relic from his marriage!


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#3 of 13 Old 10-05-2012, 09:46 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks Singin'... I have never met the Ex but he does share the things she does and says, we were friends before our relationship started and I do want to be there for him. I feel like I just want to understand what is bothering him. She wants to have 100% physical and legal custody granting him "brief monitored visits". His lawyer says that wont happen but when she gets in a mood and wont pick up the phone when dp calls to talk to his son (he calls daily.) then starts with texts and e-mails about how awful she thinks he is... it just hurts. He is a large rough looking man.... think Danial boon. lol. she accuses him of being abusive and nasty. He is the most kind, loving and gentle man I have ever met. I have seen him with children, he is sweet and fun. I just don't understand where this is coming from.

I remember my parents divorce, my mother never spoke poorly about my father and always went out of her way to make sure I could spend time with him and his family. I understand now that I am an adult there were plenty of reasons for her to behave badly and hate him but she never did, at least not in front of me. I truly believe that adults should be adults and put aside their own personal anger to benefit the children. I myself have no children and have never been marred so I cant fully understand what he is going through and it just angers me when she behaves like this and makes him feel like he will not have a relationship with his son.

My dp is convinced that his son is going to hate him. If there is any advice to help reassure him that wont happen I would appreciate it. He just gets so down on himself. I know he is a good dad, he just needs the chance to prove it. I only hope a real visitation arrangement will do that.... Thank you again ;-)

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#4 of 13 Old 10-05-2012, 01:57 PM
 
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It is possible for one parent to damage the relationship the child has with the other parent. It's considered very harmful to the child, who of course takes the trash talk personally, because they get half their genes from that person. If ex lays on the "I'm such a victim" talk too thick, her son may feel like he needs to side with her to protect her fragile feelings. This can get pretty nasty. The verbal abuse he's witnessed is very harmful, too. However, if dp is spending regular time with him, talking on the phone every day and especially getting his rightful unsupervised visitation, ex's attempts to alienate him aren't going to stand up. His son will have plenty of his own experience with his dad to know his mom is not right about him. Kids are smart that way, and naturally wired to love their parents.

If you want my advice for your dp, it's get to court! Is there something stopping him, since it sounds like they haven't been together for a long time? In this situation, she has all the power, but she is seriously squandering it- the judge is not going to like that she has been verbally abusing him in front of their child, and holding visitation over his head. Judges want what's best for the child, and they don't look kindly on a parent who uses the child to punish the other parent.

He needs to start documenting what's going on- child support payments, the enforced supervision at visits, the verbal put downs in the child's presence. When he goes to court, it will be helpful, along with affidavits from anyone he knows who might have witnessed this stuff. She sounds like the kind of person who will not hold back, so there's a good chance she will round up a bunch of friends to "witness" what a bad person he is. Some states specifically favor the mother, others default to 50/50 custody, others favor fathers, sometimes it just depends on the judge (this is all from what I've heard, not personal experience). But he should be armed with evidence that demonstrates the situation, so she can't somehow get the judge to grant supervised visitation. People have done this by lying in court, it could happen.

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#5 of 13 Old 10-06-2012, 07:25 AM - Thread Starter
 
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They are going to court in two weeks for discovery and to set a date for mediation. In the last 4 months he has only seen his son twice. She just wont allow it unless it is on her terms. The week after we got the apartment and set up the bedroom dp had a 4 day weekend from work and wanted to have his son over, she screamed holered and threw a fit.. like a 3 yr old.. she is 17 years older than me and 13 older than dp.. I would think she would be more mature than this.... and yes, I am angry at her today, dp is driving the 2.5-3 hours after working 7 hours so he can see the first soccer game of the year. It took over a month to get the soccer schedule from her and she gave him tons of attitude combined with yelling after dp talked to his son last night. So I know his son heard everything she said... frik! I could here her from the kitchen!! She claimed she has "personal plans" today and thats why he cant come..... yea personal... her boyfriend is going to visit. We both know she is seeing her ex-husband again. dp's son calls him uncle. They were here last weekend. She still owners a house locally. She never told him and didn't pick up the phone all weekend, thats because dp's son would tell him where they were! so ya, his son was 10 min down the road, he didn't even know and couldn't see him... breaks my heart!

 

Honestly, I'm kind of hoping that she refuses to allow dp his weekend visitation (because it will be without her and outside of her control) and she will loose custody because of it. She is total type A controlling crazy, I just have a deep down feeling she wont let dp take his son without her to tag along. I know dp would allow her to see their son whenever she wants, and that would go for her family also. But she wont, she hates his family. I truly believe he would be better off with his father.

arg.... lol.

 

and I just want to add that these forums are a godsend. Reading the other posts and advice has made me feel so much more optimistic about how things could turn out. And I love that everyone here is so level headed, other forums if people say they are feeling negative feelings about their partners children they just say to be quiet and leave cause you knew about the kids up front and if u cant handle it get out. It is so different knowing and thinking about a future as a blended family and actually bing in the situation. The closer we get to actually spending time together the more nervous I get, I just want him to like me, and to love his fathers home and his place in this home. ;-) thanks again!!

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#6 of 13 Old 10-07-2012, 04:54 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lostgal View Post

But during the move He came across his photo album of when his son was born. I now have burned into my mind the visual of my Bf, his newborn son laying in his Ex's arms... His hand on hers looking lovingly into her face holding her in his arms..... It kills me! I cant even look at a picture of his son now! They make me angry! It feels irrational and nonsensical. But I just don't know what to do!

My advice - try and block this image from your mind.  Or, use it to remind yourself what a good father he is. 

 

This is one of the hardest aspects of step-parenting I personally deal with - the living reminder that someone was before you, and they created a person together.

 

hug2.gif Hugs.  There are days where it just kinda sucks.  And beating yourself up over your honest feelings doesn't help.


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heartbeat.gifOur first arrived March 2013!! nocirc.gif

 

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#7 of 13 Old 10-07-2012, 05:35 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lostgal View Post

and I just want to add that these forums are a godsend. Reading the other posts and advice has made me feel so much more optimistic about how things could turn out. And I love that everyone here is so level headed, other forums if people say they are feeling negative feelings about their partners children they just say to be quiet and leave cause you knew about the kids up front and if u cant handle it get out. It is so different knowing and thinking about a future as a blended family and actually bing in the situation. The closer we get to actually spending time together the more nervous I get, I just want him to like me, and to love his fathers home and his place in this home. ;-) thanks again!!

 

A lot depends on what type of forum it is. This is a support forum. It sounds as though you hit some legal forums - which are very different.

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#8 of 13 Old 10-07-2012, 12:30 PM
 
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A lot depends on what type of forum it is. This is a support forum. It sounds as though you hit some legal forums - which are very different.

A lot of support forums can be pretty unsupportive, too. The thing about stepparenting is that even if you already have kids, you can't know what it's like until you're in the middle of it. It's just different. I know I was shocked at myself a lot, at how I could feel resentful of innocent kids, or catch myself thinking, he needs a good spanking. That's not me at all! In a way, it's been like having kids all over again for me. It has showed me sides of myself I'd rather not see, but I've grown so much in the process. Now after three years, I sometimes feel that amazement and gratitude that I feel about parenting my own kids- knowing I wouldn't be nearly as strong of a person without my sk's. It's more than worth it, OP, hang in there.

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#9 of 13 Old 10-08-2012, 07:15 PM
 
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My story is remarkably similar to a lot of yours. I'm nearly 10 years into it, and the beginning was absolutely the worst. It isn't perfect now, but it got a heck of a lot better. The first thing that made a HUGE difference was to get a legal custody order in place. Seriously, that stopped most of the BS all on its own because there suddenly were rules and serious potential consequences for breaking those rules. It shifted the balance of power because they weren't playing by HER (ever changing) rules, they were both playing by someone else's rules, rules they both agreed to follow. Another thing that was VERY helpful for my husband was the book Stop Walking on Eggshells, which is about dealing with someone with Borderline Personality Disorder. Regardless of whether or not your bf's ex is dealing with any mental illness, this book was HUGELY helpful in teaching him new (and very effective) ways to communicate with his ex. It didn't make it instantly better, but it helped him have some guidelines to follow and stop feeling like he was constantly one step away from having his daughter ripped away from him because he said the wrong thing. If he won't read it, read it yourself... it is immensely helpful.

As for your own feelings, give yourself time. You are in an awful situation, with much of your life dictated by someone who hates you and your boyfriend. It SUCKS. But there is forward progress starting soon, and hopefully things are on the right track... If you don't decide to just walk away (which would be an absolutely reasonable thing to do!!), if you can make it through the upcoming awfulness there might be some light at the other side. If you can talk to a counselor or therapist to help you sort through your feelings and help you shift your perspective, it is likely to help. And once you and your BF actually have parenting time on your own, you can actually begin to develop a relationship with this little guy and start to find your way as a family... but that can't happen until you get some time together.... things changed immensely for us when we had periods of time together that were not dictated by his ex's opinions, values, and dictates.

 

Good luck. I hope you find the support you need. Finding this place, and some of the other step-moms on here, was pretty life-changing for me. 


Parenting four little monkeys (11, 8, 6, and 4) with the love of my life. Making it up as I go.
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#10 of 13 Old 10-12-2012, 01:57 PM
 
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 We have all been or are in a sticky situation.  This forum can be very helpful.  I have found some stepkid bashing forums myself, and it's depressing. 

I love my SD with all of my heart.  Her BM I can do without.  It's so much easier to see the light when it's from the outside looking in.  Not all responses will be helpful, but there are people who are in or have been in your situation that can really help.  When I get so overloaded, I may not post, but I will read on here.  Sometimes people are talking straight to me and not even know it, whether it is from my side of view or the BM side of view.  It really does make you open your blinders.

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by aricha View Post

 Another thing that was VERY helpful for my husband was the book Stop Walking on Eggshells, which is about dealing with someone with Borderline Personality Disorder.

 

I will def have to check this book out myself.  Thank you as well.


 

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"The bond that links your true family is not one of blood, but of respect and joy in each other's life."

Richard Bach

 

 

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#11 of 13 Old 10-16-2012, 11:57 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for all the great advice! I am really working on it and I have found that including him in my thoughts for our future really is helping me.. like we went to a musium last weekend and I thought about how much fun he will have when we bring him there... things like that. and really venting here had helped a TON!!

I got the book Moms house Dads house , its all about creating a good environment for the kids and how to make two homes for a child. I started reading it and think its gona help.

Its really only getting worse with the ex tho. He went to see soccer last week saturday it was a great day and Im so glad my dp got to see his son. But since then she has been awful! did not pick up the phone 3 days in a row then yesterday had his son call and say he misses his daddy and "daddy why dont you come visit me like you used to, why want you see me any more I miss you Im sad" She knows why he cant go there... He used to take every other thursday, leave his seccond job at 10pm drive the 3 hours there sleep on her living room floor and spend friday and sometimes saturday (agian sleeping on living room floor). In the state she lives in you have to be seperated for one year to have a final divorce, if he sleeps under the same roof as her it resets the time. even if they are not sleeping together, just under the same roof, no matter what the reason is. Not to mention he does not want to continue to be her whipping boy, sleeping on the floor only being able to have his son on her time and conditions.... so he told his son, well maybe if mommy and daddy can work it out you can come visit daddy for a few days.." you can stay with me and we can visit," at the end of the conversation his son was saying he felt better and wasnt sad any more... when she heard him say that she grabbed the phone and started yelling what did you tell him.. well dp told her what he said, she went off the handle. fast forward an hour and my dp is getting texts about how his son is crying and upset because he thinks daddy is going to take him away and he is never going to see mommy agian..... WTH! This woman is crazy, I dont put it past her to be making it up but if it is true what the heck happened between when he got off the phone with his father feeling better and now aparently he is crying?! 

She has no friends and I think she is venting to her son..... who is 4! My parents divorced when I was 6 I know what it can be like for a kid but I never knew about the arguments between my parents but my dp gets calls from his son saying you have to say sorry to mommy for yelling at her because you made her cry... really, I hear his end of the conversations.... Yea he called her the B word last time but his voice did not go up, on the other hand I heard her screaching from two rooms away..... sigh.....  I wonder how long this is going to keep up. We talk about getting married and having a family but I want my kids to know their big brother but not his crazy mom!!

 

Due to budget cuts the light at the end of the tunnel has been shut off! lol..

 

I know the divorce has only been in motion for a few months but she left two years ago, I just dont understand where her anger is coming from, and she always brings me up in conversations... she does not know, spoken to or seen me ever... she is always making things up like I lived in my car for years and was married with kids that I abandoned.. all un true, I owned my home, no kids, no ex-husband. agian... sigh... I know bringing me up is just deflection but really woman, deal with it!!  Her mood swings make me feel like she really does have a mental disorder (and relaly im not trying to be rude here) one conversation she is yelling he does not send enough money (he gives her more than I make!!!!) The next conversation is he works to much and does not see his son enough, the next he is an unfit father and she is the only one that can raise HER son and he should not be around HER son..........

ok/ off the soap box... thanks for being here.

@aricha... Thanks for the book recomendation, Im a reader, Ill def get it!!!

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#12 of 13 Old 10-21-2012, 04:11 PM
 
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You need to document everything that is going on. Write down what is said on every phone call. Try to stick to text and email and get phone records. What she is doing is parental alienation and it's against the law.

 

And welcome to MDC. It's a good group of people here.


My advice may not be appropriate for you. That's ok. You are just fine how you are and I am the right kind of me.

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#13 of 13 Old 12-10-2012, 11:48 PM
 
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hey miss hopefully im not stepping outta bounds here but i empathise for your story and must say you got it rough although too you must not assume his child will harbor the same feelings as his mother being that he doesnt know who you are i fear you might be setting yourself up to fail by thinking those negative thoughts you need to remember children especially at such young ages though are impressionable are also oppinionated and easily persuaded as long as you project possitive vibes and loving & comforting as well as accepting sittuations you should gain his love and trust no problem also most importantly i feel you will come to regret your statements of, if not your feelings of hatred twards the child all together if you do conduct yourself as the accepting, helpful, pleasantly accepting friend of dads im sure you'll soon have your own pics with dad, child, and you with only distant memories of the soon to be ex wife while your living your future life as the new wife?!!! hopefully my oppinion helped if not my appologizes for wasting your time as well as thanx for taking the time to read it best of wishes and all my hopes for a happy beginning to your happily ever after?               

 

 

                                 <3 :g00nie:

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