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Wife/Stepson Conflict
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Wife/Stepson Conflict

Hello - I'm new to this forum and hope that it can help me out.

I have been married to my wife for over 8 years now and she has a 12-year-old boy from a previous marriage.  We have since had a child together - a 3-year-old girl.  For all of our 8 years, my stepson has always wanted to crawl in bed next to his mother and I have basically been asked to shut up about it.  This is the one and only conflict my wife and I have, and I don't know what to do about it.  I am uncomfortable with it because he's as tall as his mother and he is showing signs of hormonal development.  When he was younger, it didn't bother me as much, but the older he gets, the more uncomfortable I become.  If I bring it up, either nicely or not, it blows up into a fiasco and I end up rolling over and drooling for a period of time until I get fed up again.  The point is, it is my bedroom also and I have no say-so on who comes in and when.  It's not that my stepson is unwelcome, I just can't speak up if I don't want him to come in - it's always taken the "wrong way" and it's assumed that I have woken up grumpy.

I really want to resolve this matter once and for all, but I don't think my wife will budge on it.  Any advice?
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8 Comments Post a Comment
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13167_tn?1327197724
Hmmm.  When he was 4,  did you allow it?  Because that's totally normal behavior for a 4 year old,  and I think they should be allowed to slink in bed in the morning for a cuddle.  

I'm trying to picture a 12 year old boy doing this,  though,  and I'm not getting a very clear picture.  My youngest son is 12,  and I can't picture him,  or any of his friends doing this.  Is there more to this story?  Is your daughter there too, and he's just trying to come join in the family gathering?
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Avatar_n_tn
I did allow it when he was 4, but really thought he'd give it up by the time he was, at the most, 9 or 10.  Sometimes my daughter is there and sometimes she isn't.  Sometimes he comes in for a few minutes then goes downstairs.  Sometimes he wakes us up just to crawl in bed on Saturday and Sunday mornings (that is the single MOST annoying thing to me).  My wife has told me several times before that she's not going to turn him away.  It appears to me that he is trying to retain his "status" with her, meaning that he wants to make sure that she loves him just as much as she loves me.  Maybe he needs to understand the difference between parent/child love and romantic love, but he's a little young to get it yet and I'm afraid that the lines are blurred enough to where he'd feel guilty about "going steady" with someone.

I don't know.  Really what I want to do is solve the issue with my wife.  
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191716_tn?1217243363
No doubt that the room is yours too but tell your wife if the thing persist you have no choice but you're sleeping in the next room (by doing that doesn't mean that you're letting him win). Do it until they realize their mistake. All the best good luck.
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13167_tn?1327197724
TrueTexan,  I think your last line says it all.  Really,  all you want to do is solve the issue with your wife.

I don't think you can "solve" that by insisting her son be rejected.    I really don't.  I see your point,  and I certainly think you would "win" this is these were both your bio kids,  and you were  nuclear family.  Step parenting is SO TRICKY (obviously you know  that!) and your wife is probably feeling some guilt about the situation her daughter has,  vs. the situation her son has.  And she loves them equally.  

In another year,  surely this boy won't be coming to bed with you guys,  but the push and tug to have her prove she loves him will continue forever.  I was a little concerned about your statement that your daughter is sometimes there - during those times,  do you still try to make the boy leave?  Because I think that can only be seen as playing favorites, and being rejecting.

I do understand your desire to have  private bedroom.  But I think that trying to force your way on this one will make your wife choose her son over you,  and I don't really think that's the wrong choice.

Best wishes.  Time will solve this morning bedroom issue.
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Avatar_n_tn
I have had a very similar situation.  Here is a link to a chart my Husband and I used.  Use it as a reward system for him although at 10 you may want to remove the I'm a big kid saying, that might aggravate them both.  I believe if you approach this reward system cautiously and casually with your wife she may agree to it.  Then talk to your step son and negotiate what rewards he will be working for.  
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Avatar_n_tn
Sorry bout that, it didn't add the link we'll try it again...

http://www.chartjungle.com/toddler/stayinbedchart.html
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Avatar_n_tn
Gosh! Sounds like an absolute nightmare! My son is twelve, and although he still likes cuddles, I wouldn't ever entertain the idea of him invading my bed. As someone alse mentioned; he could be feeling jealous of your daughter, but surely at twelve he should understand that this is not acceptable. I think your wife and you need to resolve it together with him. Maybe you could decorate his bedroom together, get him involved in a 'male bonding' type way, make it a place for him to feel a bit more 'grown up' in. Give him the opportunity to help and choose colour schemes etc. Just an idea.

Good luck :-)
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Avatar_n_tn
I've given your post a significant amount of thought, and I think this is the best solution.  Although I don't think it's fair the way my wife is treating the situation, I do think shutting up about it might be the best solution.  In fact, when I am relatively quiet, she is much closer to me and much more respectful.  Obviously, life is much better during those times!  

When my daughter is in the bed in the mornings I do not try to make him leave.  I rarely ever say anything to him about the situation because he's only doing what he's been allowed to do.  The issue resides with my wife, and I think it's best that I lay low and just get up if I'm uncomfortable.  And you are right - I hardly think that it will be too much longer before he will stop.  As another poster said, his friends would freak if they found out!

I've just decided to ride it out and primarily focus on my relationship with my wife.  

Thank you, everyone, for your advice!
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