Blended Families

I think I'm done

Due to several issues we have had regarding pick up and drop off, DH told me he wants to do everything strictly by the CO now. Fine by me, it should make things easier.

Today I get a text from BM saying that she's going to drop K off. The CO says that pick up is at BM's residence. Before responding to BM, I text DH and asked if this was something he agreed to. An hour goes by and I haven't heard back from DH so I called him at work. All I asked was if he knew BM wanted to drop off instead of me picking up per the CO, and what he wanted me to do. I didn't want to act either way without checking with him because he was so adamant about sticking to the CO. He said he wanted me to stick to the CO so I asked him to let BM know. He said he would, and I picked K up per the CO.

Apparently this led to a huge fight between BM and DH. DH got home from work and yelled at me for bothering him at work with this "nonsense". He said if BM offered to drop off then he doesn't see the problem and I was just trying to start a fight. Are you freaking KIDDING me?! You tell me you want to stick to the CO, so I check with you before acting in contra to the CO and I'm in the wrong? Forget it, I can't freaking win. While we're arguing he says to me, "You signed on for this", and it hits me: he doesn't appreciate ANYTHING that I do for him and K. I didn't "sign on" to be the middleman between DH and BM. I didn't "sign on" to take orders from DH and/or BM. I didn't "sign on" to be treated like a second class citizen in my own home. And I certainly didn't "sign on" to have to ask permission before I so much as breath differently than what DH wants done.

I ended the discussion by saying that I'm no longer handling the pick up, drop off, or exchange of K. He needs to be the one who picks her up and he needs to be here when BM picks up or drops off. I'm done. I've resumed looking at houses in my area and I'm genuinely thinking about leaving. I feel trapped.

Can I start drinking now?
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Re: I think I'm done

  • I'm so sorry that DH is being a d!ck :(. I hope he realizes all you truly do for him before it's too late :/.
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  • I'm still really angry about the dental stuff last week, and that STILL hasn't been resolved. I'll own blame here, I've been hiding at Crossfit pretty much every night blowing off steam and trying to sort through my thoughts and feelings instead of talking to him. But right now I'm just too angry to say anything constructive to DH.
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  • I'm really sorry you are going through this.  I would say talk to DH, and I'm sure you will, but I don't think your issues are due to a lack of communication on your end, so I hope a talk will help, but...I get why you are just hiding out.

    At least you are avoiding him by doing something healthy!  And yes, please get a drink. 

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  • I'm so sorry you're at this point. Accept no texts from Bm, do not talk with her, do not talk about her, have zero contact. This is actually Dh's issue that he "signed on for" so HE can deal with it.

    The only thing I do anymore is once in a blue moon, when Dh TRULY cannot get the time off, I pick up SS at Bm's. Even then I stay in the car on the curb and text Dh to text Bm that I'm here. I don't enroll SS in sports, I don't schedule doctor or dental appointments for him. I don't do anything for him except get him haircuts and that's mostly just for me I hate to see him walk around like a rag a muffin.

    Maybe one day I will get more involved but for now I am finally happy and that's because I accept that I will have a very minimal role in raising SS. That is Dh and Bm's responsibility. My SS and DS will be raised differently and have different rules. Oh well.

    If Bm would rather not have the advantage of an involved Sm who spends her money, time and effort to make her child's life better, then that is her choice. I tried and tried and tried and I am not going to destroy my family or mental health to enroll my SS in a sport because Bm would rather be in total control or have him have nothing at all. That's her issue and I'm not getting anywhere near that crazy.
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  • Sorry you are going thru this.

     

    When you are calm, just sit down with your husband and tell him that you were only trying to abide by what he said....following the CO.  Tell him  that you cannot read his mind as to where you should bend the rules so you were only checking with him to be sure it was okay about the drop off.  Tell him you were NOT trying to start trouble but in fact, trying to keep things AS HE WANTED THEM.    If he cant see your side in this situation, he is a jerk.

  • Honey, I am so sorry about this. But I honestly think disengaging is the best thing for you. 

    When SS attacked DH and called the cops, resulting in CPS coming to MY house to interview MY child, I had finally had enough with the lot of them.

    I dropped the rope with both of them.  I did not shop for SS, I did not drive SS, I did not cook more than the evening family meal, I did not answer the phone when SS called because he yet again left a needed book at home, I did not run home to let SS in when he yet again forgot his key AND the garage door password, I did not do SS's follow-up ortho appt....

    and I did not allow DH to kvetch about SS or BM or anything regarding the situation.  

    I was clear with DH, either SS left the house (for both the attack AND for putting DD and I through a CPS case) or I got to drop the rope with SS, because the third option of me leaving with Monkey would not be pretty, since I now had enough evidence to keep her away from DH as long as SS was under the roof. 

    It took a full month for SS to truly apologize for what happened (he really thought  I didnt think it was a big deal because the precedent DH had always set was once the issue was over we were to forget it).  

    And even THEN, I created rules that I follow even today.  And both DH and SS are Still (and finally) made to feel the repercussions of THEIR actions.  

    So the moral of my hijack is STAND YOUR GROUND.  I get that K is not the one at fault here, but if you do not get the ADULTS in line, it will trickle down to the kids.  

    Our original therapist told DH that SS would never learn unless he FELT the repercussions and it took 4 more years for DH to finally get it.  But at this point, SS is years behind and will be learning these lessons when his parents arent there to clean up after him.  

    YOU want all of your kids to learn these lessons now.  That common sense, common courtesy matter.  

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  • Sorry to hear that things have come to this. I hope this helps you and that your husband steps up his game before he loses something great.
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  • I'm so sorry. I hope, once you do cool down and talk with him he realizes it wasn't your fault. It would be even better if you didn't even have to bring it up. You already do so much for K and I commend you for that. DH and BM do need to get in line and get it figured out.

    I hope all goes well.

    ETA: this would have been similar to a post from me if this board was working for me last week but it wasn't. and I'm still thinking about it as well. It's tough..

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  • SigirSigir
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    I am so sorry. I know what it's like to feel that way, trapped! I am feeling similar after a big fight dh and I had last night and like you I just want to hide out frm him. It's not a good feeling.

    I agree w others about trying to disengage... It sounds like it might help. Here's hoping that you feel better soon.
  • So sorry you're going through this Jo. The fact that he's putting the blame on you for something HE said yes to is pretty ridiculous. He is putting all his responsibility on you and I really agree with what Nineoceans said...HE signed on to this. I just cannot believe that he can't hear what he is saying to you and how wrong it is.

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  • Jo, honey, I'm so sorry.  I agree with disengaging and letting DH and BM sort their sh!t out.  But you know I'm in a similar situation, and I wish we could have a drink together.  Maybe Skype from our respective bars?  LOL
  • image MelRC117:
    So sorry you're going through this Jo. The fact that he's putting the blame on you for something HE said yes to is pretty ridiculous. He is putting all his responsibility on you and I really agree with what Nineoceans said...HE signed on to this. I just cannot believe that he can't hear what he is saying to you and how wrong it is.

    Ditto especially the bold.

    I am so sorry.

  • I'm so sorry Jo. Really, really sorry.

    This has to be out of character for him, right? Is there something else going on that's making him act like an ? Stress at work or something? Because he's behaving irrationally. He's picking fights with you. He's contradicting himself so it's impossible for you do what he wants. 

    I think (and I know you know this) you need to talk to him.  

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  • Thanks everyone. It was a rough night here last night, and this morning isn't much better.

    I understand what all of you are saying about me disengaging and I really wish I could. I have definitely started taking steps to, but for K's sake I don't know if I can do it "cold turkey". As it stands now, my refusal to be a part of any of the exchanges is going to force DH to leave work early every Tuesday and Thursday or get K a couple hours late when he gets off. He'll end up doing the latter, unfortunately. I never want K to feel like she's unwanted here or that I don't care about her. The last 3 years has been a constant struggle to disprove all the venom BM spews and show K that we love and care about her. In all of this SHE'S the one I'm concerned for.

    Another issue that is bothering me is this argument took place in front of the kids and MIL. I kept trying to diffuse it and say we'll talk about it later, but DH kept yelling. I hate fighting. I especially hate fighting in front of people. So K got to sit there and listen to us argue about HER and HER mother until my MIL stepped in and took the kids upstairs. I haven't spoken to DH or MIL since I left for Crossfit last night. They were both downstairs when I got home and I immediately went upstairs, took a shower and slept in the nursery. DH left for work this morning without uttering so much as a peep to me. I hope to be out of here before MIL and the older kids are up.

    I know I need to talk to DH about this. But seeing him stomp around this morning clearly still upset with ME makes me see red. He still thinks its ok to be mad at me for deferring to HIM regarding something that involved HIS daughter. I feel like I've been living in a minefield for the last 3 years, constantly worrying about setting one off. BM is irrational and impossible to deal with. She wants to pick and choose what I'm "allowed" to be involved in and then quickly revokes permission whenever she feels like it. DH is so preoccupied with work that HiS parenting responsibilities have fallen on to me, mostly without my consent. I've been bullied and villainized, my kids have had horrible things said about them, K's been so emotionally manipulated it breaks my heart.... and for what? So that I can be married to someone who has zero appreciation for what I do and accepts zero responsibility?
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  • Oh Jo!!!! I am so so sorry...... This isn't your fault. It is so hard because you care so much. I know you don't know me from Adam...... But I am close to you, so if you need a vodka buddy.... PM me! I do believe you should disengage. Show your DH what it is like without your help. It will be hard, but for your sanity..... You need to do it. Take care......
  • I'm sorry Jo, that is a horrible situation to be in. I agree with everyone else, disengaging is your best, and only, option. And I know it will be hard. But I think, like others have said a lot before on here, your DH needs to experience for himself everything that you do for K (and for him) to really appreciate it. And I don't blame you for avoiding him, talking this out would be best done when both of you are calmer. I think given some time he will realize all that you have to put up with and have a clearer head.
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  • Jo, I am so sorry for all you are going through. I agree with the others about disengaging. I know it has to be so hard because your natural instinct is to take care of SD the same way you do with your own children. However, you are doing far more than her own parents and are losing your sanity in the process. It won't do any of the other children any good if their mom is not in a healthy place mentally due to the strains of helping SD.
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  • Wow Jo, I'm sorry you are having to go through this.  I would say disengage also but I don't know if this is going to help.  Can MIL take the kids to dinner so you can H can have an empty house?  I always have to write my "fighting" points out because I'll forget them in the moment and will completely forget what we are talking about and nothing gets resolved.  Can you tell him that you are done with the crap BM and he are putting you through and things need to change for the better asap or you will leave?  I hate ultimatums but it sounds like H needs one.  When do your kids go to DC?  Can you take PJ and go to your parents during that time and leave H fully responsible for K for some time to show him exactly how much you do for him and her?  Again I'm sorry you have to go through this.  There is no easy solution.  GL
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  • Jo, I'm so sorry that it has come to this.  I think your H was way out of line to yell at you for something he instructed you to do previously.  I want to give him the benefit of the doubt and maybe there is something else bothering him and this just was the kicker?  Not saying that it's right to take it out on you and especially in front of the kids and MIL, but it could be an option. 

    Hopefully you guys can sit down and talk about things.  I would even go as far as to tell him it's gotten to the point that you are considering moving out or finding other housing.  Maybe it will be a good wake up call.  I agree that it could be hard on K by stepping back but do it gradually and maybe she won't notice as well.  Her BM and your H need to step up on certain matters.  Or if nothing else you need appreciation from H for all you do for all the kids but especially K.  Sometimes for Men you have to actually spell it out when it comes to certain things.

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  • image fellesferie:

    I'm so sorry Jo. Really, really sorry.

    This has to be out of character for him, right? Is there something else going on that's making him act like an ? Stress at work or something? Because he's behaving irrationally. He's picking fights with you. He's contradicting himself so it's impossible for you do what he wants. 

    I think (and I know you know this) you need to talk to him.  

    Things are always stressful at work.  Especially with the new equipment he's getting in and training on.  But I just don't feel like he gets to use stress as an excuse.  I'm stressed out taking care of the 4 kids, working, managing the house, working out, preparing for my kids to go see DC, etc, and I don't take it out on him.

    I know we need to talk, but I'm not sure I can be around him right now. I still haven't cooled down from the dentist issue last week, and now this happens.  

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  • image Ilumine:

    Honey, I am so sorry about this. But I honestly think disengaging is the best thing for you. 

    When SS attacked DH and called the cops, resulting in CPS coming to MY house to interview MY child, I had finally had enough with the lot of them.

    I dropped the rope with both of them.  I did not shop for SS, I did not drive SS, I did not cook more than the evening family meal, I did not answer the phone when SS called because he yet again left a needed book at home, I did not run home to let SS in when he yet again forgot his key AND the garage door password, I did not do SS's follow-up ortho appt....

    and I did not allow DH to kvetch about SS or BM or anything regarding the situation.  

    I was clear with DH, either SS left the house (for both the attack AND for putting DD and I through a CPS case) or I got to drop the rope with SS, because the third option of me leaving with Monkey would not be pretty, since I now had enough evidence to keep her away from DH as long as SS was under the roof. 

    It took a full month for SS to truly apologize for what happened (he really thought  I didnt think it was a big deal because the precedent DH had always set was once the issue was over we were to forget it).  

    And even THEN, I created rules that I follow even today.  And both DH and SS are Still (and finally) made to feel the repercussions of THEIR actions.  

    So the moral of my hijack is STAND YOUR GROUND.  I get that K is not the one at fault here, but if you do not get the ADULTS in line, it will trickle down to the kids.  

    Our original therapist told DH that SS would never learn unless he FELT the repercussions and it took 4 more years for DH to finally get it.  But at this point, SS is years behind and will be learning these lessons when his parents arent there to clean up after him.  

    YOU want all of your kids to learn these lessons now.  That common sense, common courtesy matter.  

    Thank you for sharing.  Everything you say is true.  I know it is.  I cannot keep being put in the middle just because DH doesn't want to deal with BM, especially when BM doesn't want to deal with either DH or myself.  They need to be the parents and leave me out of it. 

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  • I have no advice, just sending you hugs :)
                           
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  • image jobalchak:

    Things are always stressful at work.  Especially with the new equipment he's getting in and training on.  But I just don't feel like he gets to use stress as an excuse.  I'm stressed out taking care of the 4 kids, working, managing the house, working out, preparing for my kids to go see DC, etc, and I don't take it out on him.

    I know we need to talk, but I'm not sure I can be around him right now. I still haven't cooled down from the dentist issue last week, and now this happens.  

    Nope, stress at work is definitely not an excuse. But if you married him, he must be a sane and rational person--and this is not sane and rational behavior. He's picking fights, being a jerk, and not even making an effort to fix it. Why is he acting like this? If it is stress at work, then that needs to be addressed so he can find a healthier outlet. If he is unhappy with life at home, then that needs to be addressed. 

    I'd agree with everyone that you should disengage (as much as you can) from helping with K. But I disagree that you should do it to teach him a lesson. I think you should do it for your sanity and so that K doesn't see anymore fighting and shouting.

    If you cannot talk, could you email him? Even if you don't send it--or just save it for when you're face to face--it might help you collect your thoughts. 

    BTW every time I think about him saying to you that "you signed on for this," I get furious. I just got back from lunch with DH & I had to remind myself that I wasn't mad at him.

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  • image fellesferie:

    Nope, stress at work is definitely not an excuse. But if you married him, he must be a sane and rational person--and this is not sane and rational behavior. He's picking fights, being a jerk, and not even making an effort to fix it. Why is he acting like this? If it is stress at work, then that needs to be addressed so he can find a healthier outlet. If he is unhappy with life at home, then that needs to be addressed. 

    I'd agree with everyone that you should disengage (as much as you can) from helping with K. But I disagree that you should do it to teach him a lesson. I think you should do it for your sanity and so that K doesn't see anymore fighting and shouting.

    If you cannot talk, could you email him? Even if you don't send it--or just save it for when you're face to face--it might help you collect your thoughts. 

    BTW every time I think about him saying to you that "you signed on for this," I get furious. I just got back from lunch with DH & I had to remind myself that I wasn't mad at him.

    Regarding the bold: I cannot tell you how many times I've gotten heated over something I read here and then had to remind myself that it's not DH I'm mad at!  Funny how we take on everyone's problems and get so angry for them, and we don't really know them except for a screen name.  And yes, the "you signed on for this" comment still has me mad.  I used that as motivation at Crossfit last night to push me through my WOD.  And today I'm still amazed that he had the audacity to say that to me. 

    You're right, we need to address whatever it is that is causing him to be a total jackass right now.  And he needs to find an outlet for whatever frustration and stress he has.  Using me as a verbal punching bag is not going to work because I'll leave.  Great minds think alike: I already wrote him an email and have it saved in my drafts.  As I wrote out everything I was feeling, I grew increasingly angry and sad.  This just isn't working.  I'm debating right now asking him to stay with his brother for a few days to give us both a cooling down period.   

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  • WahooWahoo
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    image Nineoceans:
    I'm so sorry you're at this point. Accept no texts from Bm, do not talk with her, do not talk about her, have zero contact. This is actually Dh's issue that he "signed on for" so HE can deal with it. The only thing I do anymore is once in a blue moon, when Dh TRULY cannot get the time off, I pick up SS at Bm's. Even then I stay in the car on the curb and text Dh to text Bm that I'm here. I don't enroll SS in sports, I don't schedule doctor or dental appointments for him. I don't do anything for him except get him haircuts and that's mostly just for me I hate to see him walk around like a rag a muffin. Maybe one day I will get more involved but for now I am finally happy and that's because I accept that I will have a very minimal role in raising SS. That is Dh and Bm's responsibility. My SS and DS will be raised differently and have different rules. Oh well. If Bm would rather not have the advantage of an involved Sm who spends her money, time and effort to make her child's life better, then that is her choice. I tried and tried and tried and I am not going to destroy my family or mental health to enroll my SS in a sport because Bm would rather be in total control or have him have nothing at all. That's her issue and I'm not getting anywhere near that crazy.

    This is great advice! 

    I am so sorry you are going through this.  I totally agree with Nineoceans - - you need to step back and let DH (d =/= "dear"!) parent K on his own for a while.  Also let him deal exclusively with BM.

    K is not going to suffer because she is picked up later than she is used to.  If she asks why you no longer pick her up, tell her her dad needs to help more with taking care of ALL of the children, and pickups are a good place for him to start.

    FWIW, I had a similar problem because I was the one who always was in contact with dh's stepmom.  She didn't like dh (or me, or our kids) and I would be the one to visit, to pick up the phone, etc.  I was a "buffer" for a long time so DH wouldn't have to deal with her (and cutting contact was not an option b/c he didn't want his dad to be angry at us), but I ended up getting stomaches when we went to his dad's home.  It wasn't until I put my foot down and told DH I would no longer deal with her and HE had to step up.  Guess what?  Six months after I got out of the middle, DH ended contact wtih his stepmom and dad.  I had put up with this for years!

    http://www.steptogether.org/disengaging.html

    This is a good essay for you to read.  Not 100% applicable to you, since K appreciates what you do and loves you, but it sets up some firm guidelines for how to approach your H.

    Good luck!

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  • image Wahoo:

    image Nineoceans:
    I'm so sorry you're at this point. Accept no texts from Bm, do not talk with her, do not talk about her, have zero contact. This is actually Dh's issue that he "signed on for" so HE can deal with it. The only thing I do anymore is once in a blue moon, when Dh TRULY cannot get the time off, I pick up SS at Bm's. Even then I stay in the car on the curb and text Dh to text Bm that I'm here. I don't enroll SS in sports, I don't schedule doctor or dental appointments for him. I don't do anything for him except get him haircuts and that's mostly just for me I hate to see him walk around like a rag a muffin. Maybe one day I will get more involved but for now I am finally happy and that's because I accept that I will have a very minimal role in raising SS. That is Dh and Bm's responsibility. My SS and DS will be raised differently and have different rules. Oh well. If Bm would rather not have the advantage of an involved Sm who spends her money, time and effort to make her child's life better, then that is her choice. I tried and tried and tried and I am not going to destroy my family or mental health to enroll my SS in a sport because Bm would rather be in total control or have him have nothing at all. That's her issue and I'm not getting anywhere near that crazy.

    This is great advice! 

    I am so sorry you are going through this.  I totally agree with Nineoceans - - you need to step back and let DH (d =/= "dear"!) parent K on his own for a while.  Also let him deal exclusively with BM.

    K is not going to suffer because she is picked up later than she is used to.  If she asks why you no longer pick her up, tell her her dad needs to help more with taking care of ALL of the children, and pickups are a good place for him to start.

    FWIW, I had a similar problem because I was the one who always was in contact with dh's stepmom.  She didn't like dh (or me, or our kids) and I would be the one to visit, to pick up the phone, etc.  I was a "buffer" for a long time so DH wouldn't have to deal with her (and cutting contact was not an option b/c he didn't want his dad to be angry at us), but I ended up getting stomaches when we went to his dad's home.  It wasn't until I put my foot down and told DH I would no longer deal with her and HE had to step up.  Guess what?  Six months after I got out of the middle, DH ended contact wtih his stepmom and dad.  I had put up with this for years!

    http://www.steptogether.org/disengaging.html

    This is a good essay for you to read.  Not 100% applicable to you, since K appreciates what you do and loves you, but it sets up some firm guidelines for how to approach your H.

    Good luck!

    This essay was great.  I think DH should read it regarding my kiddos.  Not that my kiddos are disrespectful towards him, but he gets frustrated much easier than I do about things (shoes left out, dishes left on the table, laundry not brought down, etc).  This essay might give him some ideas about disengaging from it (and show him that the kids could be far worse).

    The portion about making DH parent was spot on.  I think a big part of the problem is that DH grew up in a household where Mom handled everything.  His dad traveled a lot for work and was really only home for a week out of the month, so DH grew up thinking that dads don't have to be involved.  Plus, before we got married BM made all of K's appts and sometimes would fill him in later.  Decisions that BM made regarding K only impacted BM and DH.  Now DH needs to remember that those decisions impact me and my kids as well and can't just let things happen and "oh well".  He's become very complacent in me doing all of it, and that doesn't work.  Especially when BM isn't doing any of it and now both of them are leaving it up to me, all while I'm getting bashed and yelled at for doing it all.

    As terrible as this sounds, it would be so much easier to step back and watch them both fail if K weren't so awesome.  Blast you K for being a good kid! 

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  • bebe11bebe11
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    My husband had to give up 50/50 custody of my SS because he physically could not pick him up on certain days of the week.  He was working nights and would have to sleep during the day and it was just not possible.  It kind of happend before I came into the picture, but even after I moved in I never offered to help.  And with my SD (2 BMs), my H will only get her when he is off and can do all the pick up/drop offs.  Occasionally I will keep SD if I am off work early on a Friday until DH gets home. 

    The part for me, that makes me feel a little bad is that my DH is off on Mondays and he ALWAYS picks my DD (not his bio kid) up from school, or during summer watch her, and he has 4 weeks of vacation and he just doesn't even hesitate to keep my DD.  BUT there are no pick ups or drop offs to deal with and my ex would never be rude or disrespectful to my H.

     

  • bebe11bebe11
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    image kimmygirl77:
    Oh Jo!!!! I am so so sorry...... This isn't your fault. It is so hard because you care so much. I know you don't know me from Adam...... But I am close to you, so if you need a vodka buddy.... PM me! I do believe you should disengage. Show your DH what it is like without your help. It will be hard, but for your sanity..... You need to do it. Take care......

    Maybe us CA stepmom's can start our own support group :)

     

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