Schedule with biomom (small update) - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 16 Old 10-05-2005, 08:22 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I posted maybe 2 months ago about wanting to ask biomom about doing a set schedule. We finally got it straightened out and it's been working great.

Well, she just got a job, and has to work weekends, and is now asking us to 'baby-sit' dss while she works on her weekends. Well, really to baby-sit him on Saturday and drop him off NINE HOURS early on Sunday's...

This is gonna sound really bad, but OMG this just infuriates me. I can't explain it, I really can't... BUT COME ON!! SO and I don't get to stop playing mom and dad just cause we have jobs, but she can? UGH UGH UGH!!

Honestly, it's better than we thought, we did think she would back out completely on having him every other weekend. And well, knowing her this job won't last to Thanksgiving...

Yes, I'm ranting, and yes it may sound rude, but I just need to get it out....

Anyone else deal with this? Is it okay to be frustrated?

(and no, dss knows nothing about the frustration, neither does biomom, and neither ever will. This is between me, SO, the walls, and you lovely folks here I also do not take my frustrations out on dss, or anyone, except a pillow here and there when it really gets me down...) Sorry just needed to add those things before I got replies about now taking this out on dss, or talking to dss about this, I already know that
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#2 of 16 Old 10-05-2005, 10:38 PM
 
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You sound really frustrated. But, just a sematics issue- when a child is being cared for by one of his parents, it's not babysitting...IMO

-Angela
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#3 of 16 Old 10-06-2005, 12:24 PM
 
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I agree that it's not 'babysitting,' but on the other hand if her son is usually in her care at that time, and it's her responsibility to arrange care for him, I don't see anything wrong with her turning to you first.

My dh and his ex had a separation agreement that specified that if either of them needed care for the kids when it was 'their' time with them, that they'd ask the other to oblige first. He had actually pushed really hard for that since he wanted to care for the kids when she was working and/or going out with friends, and he was really disappointed when she didn't follow through and went straight to daycare and babysitters.

I'm not sure what you'd want to see happen instead - her not get a job? her send ds to a sitter's instead of his dad's? Objectively neither of these are probably great things. On the other hand, from your other posts, it sounds like the dynamic with you, your dh, and your stepson has been pretty stressful for you, so I can totally understand feeling frustrated with this, and needing a bit of a break on weekends. And if she used the term 'babysitting' to refer to you when you care for him all week as well, that's inappropriate.
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#4 of 16 Old 10-06-2005, 12:56 PM
 
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I am sorry, that must be so frustrating!
Yes it is inconsiderate that she would expect you to babysit. She should be able to afford her own babysitter. Eventhough yes that your DSS. Still, I am sure that your SO is paying child support - is he not? Because if he is, then that is towards anything that the child needs, as far as support. I think she is overstepping her boundaries. Big time.
Just keep trying to talk to SO. In the meantime, just contiune to love DSS and try to be calm. As hard as it is. Just make a suggestion to her about that, with the child support?
Just wondering if that could help?
Kate
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#5 of 16 Old 10-06-2005, 01:08 PM
 
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I'm so sorry you are feeling so frustratetd.

And I do understand that in situations like this, it's often the principle of the matter. At least that's how it is for us. It seems to me that if she needs to revise the visitation schedule for her new job, then the schedule should be revised, but to call it "her time" with him isn't exactly accurate, even if she does think of it as him being "babysat" by dad.

mammastar2, that's so great that your DH and his ex had that agreement! I think that would be the ideal. But realistically, that never would have worked for us and it might not work for lots of other families. In our situation, my DH's ex is all about who owes her what, never about what she owes to anyone. And it's always been that way. It's all about her. At least when it comes to DSS and to us, which is all I can really judge her on since I don't know her in any other context.

For example, DSS is 13 and lived with her until about a year ago. During that time, we paid hefty child support (no issue doing it at all!) and DH had it set up through online bill pay so that each pay day, a check would automatically go out to her. Obviously, the check would not go out until the money was in the account, so it would usually arrive to her a couple of days after the "due dates" of the 1st and 15th, which was only in her mind, not in any documentation. Without fail, almost every single month, she would call at least once, usually twice to ask where the CS was and ask why he was dragging his feet sending it. He would explain to her (again!) how the bank send the check and she should have it any day. But she refused to just let that ride and had to hassle him about the check being 2 days "late".

Fast forward to now - DSS has been living with us for over a year. She pays minimal CS (a small, small fraction of what we paid to her - again this is fine and fair in our opinion) which she agreed to pay around the 1st of each month. So far, she has never once paid the CS within the first half of the month, muchless around the 1st! DH is tired of reminding her, so he stopped last month. Never did see and CS in Sept and so far none in Oct. If she didn't get any money for that long, she would be calling here every day about it! :

So anyway, that's just a current example of how she takes advantage of us, but expects perfection in return. There are hundreds more examples I could give, but I won't. The point is, not every one in these situations is mature enough to handle an arrangement like the one your DH and his ex have going on. And I do think sometimes it's better if it's more cut and dried and consistent.

MomBirthmomStepmom - any way she would be open to revising the schedule again? If she needs to work, she needs to work. But that doesn't mean she shouldn't be seeing her child when she can. Hope you guys can work something out that is better for everyone. Let us know how it goes.
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#6 of 16 Old 10-06-2005, 02:49 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm sorry I used the term 'baby-sit', I agree, we care for him it's not 'baby-sitting', but was just trying to get my FEELINGS across, wasn't looking for correct grammer honestly.

Someone brought up child support. SO doesn't pay child support, because SO has custody. Dss LIVES with us. Biomom is SUPPOSED to pay child support, but pays very little of it. Even when she works full time, she only pays about half what she's court ordered to.

SO and I are now trying to figure out how to work around her work schedule, however, SO liked what we had and doesn't want to change it, so he just wants to keep dss all the time. It's frustrating. He wants it his way or the highway, nevermind the boy clearly wants and needs time with his mother.

She normally had him Tue and Thur one week, and then Tue and Fri-Sun the next, over and over. She works Wed, Thur, Sat and Sun (5pm-10pm). So, I suggested to change the Thur to Fri on that week, and he got pissy 'she'd have him EVERY friday????', I said well, he needs to see her etc... He didn't like that though....

I don't know what to do, or how to work on this.

The problem isn't her having a job. We WANT her to have a job. The problem, honestly, was that everyone was happy and settled into the schedule, and now it's gotta change and it's frustrating. That's it.

I really don't think she took her SON into consideration when looking for a job honestly. SO and I both worked our work schedules around our children.

We've also been told the 'step-father (biomom's boyfriend, whom dss does seem to like), does not want to 'watch' dss for her, so that's out of the question. Honestly, frustrating as well...
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#7 of 16 Old 10-06-2005, 02:54 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I also want to point out, this isn't the ideal situation, and biomom is quite immature when it comes to dss. We NEED a structured schedule, or else there's NO telling when she'll even call him. The poor boy would cry and cry about when's mom gonna call etc. It broke our hearts. We needed this schedule for our child, not for us necessarily...

A losse arrangement doesn't work well here. We tried it for a long time, and it was just periods of her being around, and periods of her being uninterested....

I'm afriad we're hitting an uninterested point, simply because she now has a job to take up her time, honestly...
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#8 of 16 Old 10-06-2005, 06:07 PM
 
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It does sound like the schedule needs modifying, and like you have some good ideas! I hope your SO calms down enough to listen to them.

And yes, my dh's idea of having a clause about care in the separation agreement was a good one - but it never worked, since his ex didn't want it to! It's tough being the reasonable one, and it's a big responsibility: it sounds like you're taking on that role here. Good for you!
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#9 of 16 Old 10-06-2005, 06:13 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Also, SO is having some jealousy issues. He believes dss 'likes' biomom and her bf better than him, and that dss would rather be with them than us..

Whether that's true or not, is beside the point (dss has never said either way, and it would be silly to ask really), however SO kinda likes dss being with us, and not being with his biomom.

Personally, I know dss NEEDS to see his mom, regardless of what SO WANTS, make sense? So it's kinda hard to get SO to see that sometimes... He wants dss all to himself...

ETA: I guess that's why this bugs me so much... SO wants dss all to himself, and now it's easier for him to get that. He's sooooo okay with saying 'okay, you just see your mom less', rather than saying 'okay, let's make a plan to work around this', and of course, biomom isn't in a hurry to make a plan either.

I just sometimes feel like I'm the only parent to this child... *sighs*
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#10 of 16 Old 10-06-2005, 06:17 PM
 
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Hope you don't mind, I'm not in a blended family but just wanted to give you a hug. Take a deep breathe. We are here to llisten and vent and you certainly have a reason to. Hope everything gets straightenen out soon.
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#11 of 16 Old 10-06-2005, 06:21 PM - Thread Starter
 
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So, yeah, now I'm thinking my beef isn't with biomom wanting to so less parenting.. We've *always* known this about her... it's nothing new, and I did get used to it..

I honestly think it's an issue with SO wants to be selfish about this, and NOT (IMO) putting dss's NEEDS before his (SO's) WANTS.

Thanks for letting me talk this out guys. I don't think there will be an easy solution to this. SO is pretty insistant that he IS selfish with dss, HOWEVER, he does believe he's 'fair' when it comes to biomom... I think he wants to be and tries to be, but when it comes down to it, I don't think he really is..

And while I'm not exactly one for saying 'hey SHE deserves this', I'm thinking, 'hey! DSS deserves this'...
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#12 of 16 Old 10-06-2005, 08:59 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MomBirthmomStepmom
Also, SO is having some jealousy issues. He believes dss 'likes' biomom and her bf better than him, and that dss would rather be with them than us..
Ahhhhh, yes, the jealousy. If one is prone to jealousy, sharing custody can be really tough. In our situation, DSS always seems to prefer the parent who he is NOT living with. When he lived with his mom, it was all about "I miss Dad", "when do I see Dad?" and "YES! I see Dad this weekend!" Now that's he lives with us, he's the same way about his mom. :LOL I think this is natural for a child who is living between two homes, for a couple of reasons.
1) the weekend parent usually does fun stuff, while the custodial parent is the one who makes them do their homework and chores and all the un-fun, day to day stuff
2) they just don't get a change to "miss" the custodial parent, so that parents never get's the "COOL, I get to see my mom/dad"

I can see how your DSS might especially be expressing his excitement for seeing his mom since she was absent for so long. I hope your SO can come to understand that it doesn't mean his son loves him any less.
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#13 of 16 Old 10-06-2005, 09:06 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mamameg
Ahhhhh, yes, the jealousy. If one is prone to jealousy, sharing custody can be really tough. In our situation, DSS always seems to prefer the parent who he is NOT living with. When he lived with his mom, it was all about "I miss Dad", "when do I see Dad?" and "YES! I see Dad this weekend!" Now that's he lives with us, he's the same way about his mom. :LOL I think this is natural for a child who is living between two homes, for a couple of reasons.
1) the weekend parent usually does fun stuff, while the custodial parent is the one who makes them do their homework and chores and all the un-fun, day to day stuff
2) they just don't get a change to "miss" the custodial parent, so that parents never get's the "COOL, I get to see my mom/dad"

I can see how your DSS might especially be expressing his excitement for seeing his mom since she was absent for so long. I hope your SO can come to understand that it doesn't mean his son loves him any less.
mamameg, thanks for that! I've talked with SO about this, and said pretty much the exact thing. How mom is the 'fun' one, and we're the downers, asking him to do homework, and chores etc..

I've also explained that he KNOWS we're always gonna be here for him, and doesn't KNOW mom will be. So he never gets excited about us really..lol Like 'WOW mom's coming to my choir at school!' (he KNOWS we will, EVERYtime, her, well she comes here and there etc etc)

He will give his MOTHER an invitation to his birthday party or make one for a school event, but just expects we'll be there. I explain to SO that that's a GREAT thing, he TRUSTS us to be there for him always, but it still hurts SO's feelings..

I can't say I know how he feels, but just try hard to let him know he's loved, but mom's a novelty...lol (sorry to sound mean, but it seems to be true in our situation)
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#14 of 16 Old 10-06-2005, 10:38 PM
 
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[I am new to posting here, and have been reading tonight to try to find someone else who is going through the same stuff, hard to vent on poor DH all the time...glad to know I'm not alone, sad to see how many people are in this boat. ] Regarding your post, my stepson's bm (LOL) is the same way, the "fun" parent. She is more of an amusing visitor...like a clown or a magician! I'm sure you've heard this a ton already from people but keep doing what you're doing, you are doing the right things, and eventually, your stepson will realize who the real parents are and who is just a fair-weather parent. Who do you think he will go to when he has a real problem in life--you guys, the dependable ones, or her, the on-again off-again "mom"? I know it's small comfort...
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#15 of 16 Old 10-07-2005, 12:29 AM
 
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.
I'm starting to face up to this one, and the question I'm asking myself (Alex is 6, the only one of my two children who actually cares about his father. Isaac regards him as Santa Claus- a disembodied voice on the phone who occasionally shows up bearing inappropriate presents and has no idea who HE is- and also, by and large, mythical) is: at what point do I stop protecting my children from their biological father? I know, my dh knows and my ex knows that there is going to come a point where my ex is going to be held accountable for his actions and his choices, and it will be his son who judges him and finds him wanting (or not.) At 6, we've obviously only got a few months before Alex finds the words and confidence to express the anger and rage he feels (he's already expressing hurt and disappointment) and I'm concerned about the long-term consequences of this realisation.
I don't think it's exactly like seeing a magician, with a detached parent of this kind- in my head, it's more like playing chicken with an oncoming truck. It's really exciting, but also potentially destructive. (Obviously, this, too, I don't say to my children. That's the other nice thing about MDC)

Helen mum to five and mistress of mess and mayhem, making merry and mischief til the sun goes down.
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#16 of 16 Old 10-11-2005, 09:03 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I kinda wanted to update everyone on this.

I tried talking with SO about this over the weekend, and it turned into a HUGE fight, which ended up feeling like I was the biomom, and he the step-dad to dss... It was soooo odd... The fight just really reiterated to me, SO's jealousy about biomom, and his want to be selfish with dss.

Dss on the other hand, has become VERY sensitive since this all started, and he's seeing his mom less and less. It's breaking my heart. The woman has days off, and has hours in the day she can see him, and we're more than happy to oblige and have told her so, but she just shrugs it off and says 'no', seeing him about half the set scheduled time is just fine by her....

It's heart-breaking. Dss is already having issues with this. SO is ecstatic cause now he gets dss to himself (as opposed to 'sharing' with biomom). And I'm somewhere in the middle. He's my kid too and I want him home with us, HOWEVER, HE NEEDS to see her....

I don't know how to deal with this with SO. He knows dss has been touchy, and upset really easily, but he can't stand to admit it has anything to do with the times he sees his mom...
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