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Old 03-25-2008, 05:19 PM
 
16 posts, read 40,369 times
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Default Step Moms - How to deal with a difficult Ex?

I do believe there are moms and step moms out there that can get along. I would like very much for that to happen, but I have lost hope in my situation.

My husbands ex is not someone I can go to coffee with or throw joint birthday parties with. She is just not a happy person. It seems she is very jealous of my husband. Seems odd that her anger/jealousy is so fresh since they divorced over 9 years ago, but she acts like it was yesterday. The divorce was her choice too. Since I have been in the picture she has been much worse to my husband. She has never been nice to me at all. I wish our relationship could be more amicable for the sake of my step son.

I have tried offering the olive branch many times, but it is usually lit on fire or thrown off a cliff. I am not a welcome face in her life.

Anyone else experience this and if so, any advice?
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Old 03-25-2008, 06:38 PM
 
Location: Bora Bora: Vava'u.
738 posts, read 1,180,921 times
Reputation: 515
Yes i have.
Remember one thing - - you are the step mom.

Don't speak about her or her problems negatively if your step-son is around. I would be really careful-little ears hear pretty well.

Be a lady and do not stoop down to her level. No exceptions.

The less you say to her and about her...the better.

Be a lady.
Have more class.

P.S. Sometimes the grass looks a little greener on the other side.

Good luck...you'll need it.

Last edited by RAZZEL; 03-25-2008 at 06:40 PM.. Reason: to add
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Old 03-25-2008, 06:52 PM
 
2,887 posts, read 3,973,155 times
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One thing to consider....although the divorce might have been 'her choice' doesn't mean it's what she really wanted. There are many reasons a wife would choose divorce and many of them don't make them happy to choose that route.

Many people outside of my marriage had no idea what was going on when he left me and subsequently I chose divorce. The side he portrays is far different than my side....however his is heavily clouded through his alcoholism. So, though the divorce was indeed my choice and my life is greatly improved and happy now....doesn't mean I like him any better or feel any different about him 10 years later. I'd just as soon never see him again, so I doubt I'd be too willing to buddy up with any future wife. Of course, our girls are now 21 and almost 26, so it doesn't really matter anymore. haha
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Old 03-25-2008, 07:07 PM
 
Location: Chicago 'burbs'
1,022 posts, read 2,160,310 times
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I wish that his ex and I could have some type of relationship for the sake of the kids, too. It would be great to be able to call her and say "I'd like to sign the kids up for ____." It would be wonderful. Of course that isn't the case. We have talked nicely on the phone a few times, but she is really hot/cold with me. Sometimes she'll say negative things about me to my husband and I'm like "Where did that come from?!" I've never tried to take her place, I only help the kids and I'm good to them.

If you figure out how to have a relationship with her, definately let me know HOW you managed it!

BTW, how long have you and the husband been together? Is it still somewhat new? We've been married for a year. I'm hoping with time..........
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Old 03-25-2008, 07:38 PM
 
Location: USA
1,246 posts, read 2,048,615 times
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Well I was previously married to a divorced man w/a daughter. At first the relationship with the ex-wife was horrendous. This lasted for about the first 5 years. She was not an involved mother at all and because of that my step-daughter was with us 5 out of every 7 days. We were the ones to attend all school meetings and doctor's appointments etc. In court she stated that she could not be a good mother because she felt intimidated by me and how I was with her daughter and her daughter's affection for me.

I finally had to talk to her and reassure her that I was not trying to take her place. I simply loved her daughter as if she were my own and for that she really should be grateful as I was sure she wouldn't prefer someone mistreating her daughter.

The relationship between her and my now ex-husband was going from bad to worse and after those initial 5 years it actually became a situation where she and I did all the talking, all the arranging and changing of visitation schedules, holidays, etc. We even discussed school and discipline problems together and it became a very civil and productive relationship for the sake of my step-daughter.

Even a year ago when my ex-father in law passed away, both she and I attended the funeral and we sat together. It really was kinda funny despite the sorrow event because my ex-husband was there with his new fiancee and fellow co-workers of his joked around about how he had 2 ex-wives and a future wife there and none of us were pulling each other's hairs out.

Anyway, there is hope. You may just need to give it more time and don't force it. If you've tried to talk to her, reassure her you are not trying to take her place in her children's lives there is not much more you can do.

I am now currently engaged to be married to a divorced man that has custody of his 3 children. I am not sure how the relationship with his ex-wife will be but I am hoping to be able to have a civil one built on mutual respect because in the end that is what is most beneficial for the children.

It's a hard situation you're in but keep the faith and hope that things will get better in time. Hopefully they will.

Mari
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Old 03-25-2008, 07:53 PM
 
542 posts, read 1,126,004 times
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I haven't been in this situation yet, but I'm sure I will be eventually. Thankfully, my ex and I have a good shared parenting relationship. Believe it or not, we live one street apart! I truly hope he finds a great woman who will be wonderful to my children. I am engaged and not so sure about them meeting each other lol. There's a long story to our move back to Texas from Ohio (where my fiancee still lives) and needless to say, my fiancee doesn't have anything nice to say about my ex. On top of that, my ex did admit he hoped moving here would bring a chance for us to maybe get back together so I know its not easy for him knowing I found someone new.
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Old 03-26-2008, 06:57 AM
 
1,363 posts, read 4,017,457 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RAZZEL View Post
Yes i have.
Remember one thing - - you are the step mom.

Don't speak about her or her problems negatively if your step-son is around. I would be really careful-little ears hear pretty well.

Be a lady and do not stoop down to her level. No exceptions.

The less you say to her and about her...the better.

Be a lady.
Have more class.

P.S. Sometimes the grass looks a little greener on the other side.

Good luck...you'll need it.

This is probably the best advice. Stop trying to make it something it's not going to be. As long as everybody can be civil when you have to be together for something for your step-son, then that may have to be good enough. If she doesn't want to deal with you, she doesn't really have to. I don't mean to sound harsh, but looking back on my mom & step-mom's "relationship", there was never going to be a Julia Roberts/Susan Sarandon "Stepmom" moment. LOL. However, they were civil at school functions, graduations, games, and my wedding. Just focus on being a good step-mom to your step-son, let your husband deal with his ex-wife, and don't worry about being friends with her. It's a shame she can't be nice, but hopefully one day she'll come around a little.

For what it's worth, we NEVER had a joint birthday party
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Old 03-26-2008, 07:55 AM
 
116 posts, read 294,415 times
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I have been on both sides. My kids have a step-mom, they love her and I chat with her once in awhile...have her kids over to my house.
I also was a step-mom at one point in my life....no problem there either.(I only met her a few times though, since she had problems and wasn't in the kids lives very often).
I think your husband's ex is real jealous and miserable and he should deal with her and
and I am sure her son is picking up on her anger. Just be happy and be friendly, your step-son will notice that.
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Old 03-26-2008, 10:24 AM
 
16 posts, read 40,369 times
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Glad to know I am not alone out here...

My husband and I are still newlyweds. So yes the freshness could be a big part of it.

I will add my husband and his ex were young in love at 21 and 23. 4 months into a relationship, OOPs. My husband did the right thing and got a job while she stayed home. He didnt see himself with her, but for his son he married her. His mom flew the whole family to Mexico for a big wedding. So being young and barely knowing each other was not on their side. They were both not ready to be parents. He wanted to be with his friends and she would retaliate by moving out when he would go out.

She called it quits at 4 months of marriage. So in all they were only together a year and a half. Since then their son has been on a schedule of every other weekend with dad and summers, holidays, and a few days during the week.

My husband never wanted to get married again after his experience with his ex. Then thanks to his good friends, we met. I know that being new in my husbands life and probably the first serious woman in 9 years is bringing up some new emotions for his ex to experience....seeing her ex-husband and son with someone else. I respect those odd feelings. I am sure that is hard.

Meanwhile she is now on her 3rd marriage. 2nd marriage only lasted 6 months. This 3rd marriage happened over Christmas break...going on 3 months now. Since I have been with my husband she has moved 5 times and has had 3 jobs. His family is not shocked as this is her usual M.O. And sadly they all expect this marriage to end too. She tends to use their son as a pawn. Sadly his only after school activities is day care and video games. Despite my husbands whole family paying for boy scouts, karate, soccer, swimming, baseball...etc etc...she says no.

And I do mind my Ps and Qs, not saying a word about his mom around my step son. (believe me it is SO hard) I try to be that model stepmom that she would be happy to know I make him clean his room, eat his veggies, drink milk, say please and thank you and tuck in your shirt.

All of her constant drama in her life, anger at her ex-husband is just crazy for me to understand. Yes I get angry, but mostly I cant understand not wanting to move on with the grudges and anger.

Oh yes and marriage #3, he has 2 kids and is fighting with his ex.... I could write more, but you wouldn't believe the endless drama....

Thanks for your support fellow step moms!!!!
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Old 03-26-2008, 10:34 AM
 
Location: Stallings, NC
124 posts, read 354,489 times
Reputation: 59
Hi - I am a step-mom to three girls. When my husband and I first got together they were 7,8 and 13. Now they are 16, 17 and 21. My husband and I also have a 3 year old son together. In my opinion, being a step-mom is the hardest job I've ever taken on in my life! I have learned through trial and error. In the end, I've learned and would recommend to others not to set expectations of their mom, of them and, more importantly of myself. It has not always been easy, but I can now say that I have a very good relationship with the girls and a decent relationship with their mom. I have learned to not get involved with the parenting decisions, to keep my opinions to myself and to let their mom and dad handle the rest. That's the best advice I can give. Take it for what it's worth.
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