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Avatar universal

i think my boyfriend hates my son

Please help.  I feel very torn. I have been divorced for a year and a half.  I have two beautiful and wonderful kids from my first marriage, one boy age 10 and one girl, age 7.  During my separation I started dating a friend.  I kept him very separated from my children. They did not meet until 9 months after my divorce was finalized.  My boyfriend new of my kids and new they come first.  He accepted them right away.  My kids were a little distant at first but they grew to like him and every thing was great.  Then came the hard part.  A few months ago my boyfriend's job forced him to transfer to another state.  He asked if me and my children would come.  I talked it over with them and they welcomed the thought of starting over and all of us moving in together.  We moved and things went downhill.  My ex husband stopped calling them and my son took it very hard.  He's always had a tight bond with his father and when my ex did this it crushed him.  My son is definately a little spoiled when it comes to home life.  He has all the video games you can imagine. He has a large tv and toys galore.  He never really had to clean up after himself because I always did it for him.  When my boyfriend and I moved in together we decided to bring structure and rules (which my ex never backed me up on) to our home.  The kids have to clean their rooms, help around the house (such as cleaning off their own dinner plates, taking the trash out of their bathroom and replacing with a new bag, etc... nothing too harsh). They also have to come home right after school and do homework, even if none is assigned, they still have to either read or practice math problems.  The biggest rule my son has an issue with is food.  Before, my ex would allow them to eat and drink whatever.  It was doritos for breakfast and mt dew all day long.  If I said no, they would just go to their dad and he would let them sneak it or flat out do it in front of me.  Now, they have to eat vegetables and they have to eat everything on their plates (i make their plates and I put very little so they usually get seconds). My son hates veggies but I tell them it's to help them grow and be healthy.  SInce this rule my son has grown to love broccoli and asparagus (amazing, huh...).  Now here is the problem, my son says he hates all the rules and it's putting too much pressure on him.  He cries at the drop of a hat and seems overly emotional.  My boyfriend says it's time for him to grow up and just accept things for what they are.  Lately it seems like I hear my boyfriend say harsh things to my son.  He tells him he's being selfish and needs to grow up.  He tells him to stop all the crying and be a man.  If my son says he doesn't like a vegetable, my boyfriend tells him that the food on his plate is not an option.  He has to eat it.  This tension is causing alot of issues between me and my boyfriend.  I defend my children without regard.  I don't interrupt my boyfriend's discipline in front of the kids b/c I feel it undermines his authority and I don't want to do that with the kids. My son seems miserable and wants to go live with his dad.  I see my boyfriend pulling away from my son and wanting nothing to do with him because of his outburst.  I don't know what to do.  I feel very lost and confused and feel torn.  My kids are great kids and my boyfriend is a very good man.  Any suggestions?
44 Responses
13167 tn?1327197724
I think you should go back to the town where your ex lives.  

The first part of your post sounded fine - cleaning rooms,  taking out garbage,  is all perfectly fine and expected.

When you got to the rule about eating everything on the plates - that's just useless,  cruel control.  Your boyfriend sounds like a joyless dictator,  bearsgril,  and it's not going to get better.  

Your son is grieving the loss of the relationship with his father and he's under the thumb of this man you've moved in with.  

I think if you don't leave the boyfriend,  the next best thing is to send this boy back to his father.  

Boys need nurturing,  loving,  caring male attention not disdain,  and your boyfriend doesn't want your son.

Oh Dear, all these new rules and regulations! WHY? its one thing getting the children to eat better and do a few chores but what is with the homework when they have not been assigned any? whose idea was this? and for what reason? You have gone from one extreme to another. These are young children, they will have enough pressure later - why all this extra homework? give them a break! seems to me this man ''boyfriend'' is being given too much power with your children  and that you are permitting this man to dominate everything - including you. I do not like the sound of this and I am curious to know how much experience this man has with children, does he even have any children of his own? If you continue in this vein, apart from the fact your son will start to hate this man, but your son is going to be serious distressed  and that is if he is not already. In my opinion, you are putting your son (you have not said much about your daughter) through too much and certainly too soon, which is tantamount to emotional abuse, get the boyfriend to back off. And at the end of the day, that is all he is. If your boyfriend gets crappy with you, or threatening in anyway when you tell that he is to follow your rules for YOUR children, then you know you have a problem.
973741 tn?1342346373
Really could not agree with Rockrose more.  

First of all, I don't believe a parent should move their children away from their father.  Boys in particular need their dad in their life and if that relationship is broken, much emotional trauma ensues.

Secondly, all of the complaints about what your son did prior to moving in with your boyfriend . . . well, what ownership do you take of that?  I think your bf looking badly at your son for the life you created for your son is very unfair.  

So I agree that some things should change.  But YOU should be the one to do it.  Family counseling 101----------  significant others should remain in a support role and not a disciplinarian role.  He may have ideas about what goes on in the home, but he speaks to you privately and you handle it.  Or . . . expect serious problems.  He's 10 now . . . he'll be 13, then 16 , and then 18 before you know it.  

I agree that your bf sounds over the top, to be honest.  And I'd never allow my children to be subjected to that. If they are indeed your number one priority, you wouldn't allow it either.

So, move back.  Otherwise, prepare yourself that your son will begin to resent you as well soon enough for bringing this harsh man into his life.  good luck
1347146 tn?1276548690
I will have to back her up though. If the father is not present and it was HIS choice to stop calling his kids and speak to them then how is it her fault? I mean fathers quit talking to their kids that are living in the same city. It is a parent's choice to stop talking to their children.  On another note, the eating everything off your plate thing. That comes from being raised that way usually by someone's own parents. My father was the exact same way. So naturally, I have the thought in my head to teach my children the same things. In a lot of ways, we raise our children the same way we were raised by natural instinct.

Now, I know from my own past with my parents being split up that putting a new man in your children's lives at that age will cause you to have some distress. I put my parents through trauma galore. I yelled, screamed, fought, ignored them, etc. The only thing in my opinion is to put your foot down. You and your boyfriend should discuss things together before even disciplining. I am in the same boat as you. My boyfriend is moving down here from Maryland and will be a part of my child's life. Now Caitlyn is only 3 so it is a bit of a difference. Just from what I went through in my past, I can say that being a single mother you have to do what you have to do. If this man is willing to provide for you and your children and be a father to them I do not see him as being overbearing or anything close.

From what you say he says to your son, it sounds EXACTLY the way my father was to us kids and he was not even our step dad. It sounds like your boyfriend was raised a lot similarly to the way I was. Now I'm not saying its perfect but picking up and moving back will do nothing but mess your children up more for the mere fact of having to start over again.

Another suggestion I would give you, call their father. Try to get him more involved in their lives again. Maybe this would help with the issues with your son and him being out of control. Try to see if you can also talk to the school's consuler about some of the situation and see if they cant help your son cope with the changes in his life.

To be honest, I respect my mom even more now than I did then seeing that she helped us kids get over the fact our father was not all that active in your lives. Yes, he was there for us on his weekends and visitation but after we left his house..it was pretty much my mom and stepdad on their own with us kids.

I hope I was able to help out at all. If you need anyone to talk to just give me a message I'd be glad to talk to you! ^-^
Avatar universal
I did not move my children away from their father. Their father moved away first.  He is military and got stationed several states away.  That happened during our divorce.  He called several times but usually I was the one giving my phone to my children to call him.  He now refuses to answer the phone, emails or text.  Much less, he doesn't call them either.  I do not even answer the phone vocally when he calls.  I see his number and I just pick up the phone and call for the kids... just to clear up a little more info.
Avatar universal
Fathers quit calling often because of constant abuse or heartbreak.   We don't have enough information to make any decisions regarding that.

Eat everything on the plate?  This is often is listed as a type of abuse that often becomes linked to Bulimia and Anorexia.

Just out of curiosity is there any reason he couldn't or shouldn't go to his fathers?

Quick recap:

Boyfriend disciplining kids  not good.  Just out of curiosity did you know that boyfriends fall after mothers regarding abuse of male children?

You moved  to be closer to the boyfriend for you not the kids." A few months ago my boyfriend's job forced him to transfer to another state."  So at the very least you ripped them away from there support network of friends etc. (how close are the grandparents extended family now?

The father after he was no longer able to see the kids regularly quit calling.

You think he hate yours son but you let him handle the discipline?

How long after they met your boyfriend did they move?  Did they get at least as much time to meet and trust your boyfriend as you had before you guys moved in together?
Avatar universal
As for taking ownership to previous behavior, I do take some blame.  It was easier to just let it go and clean up after them than to have a power struggle with their father.  I didn't want to put them in the middle of our arguments.  As for the statement of a step parent strictly being a support and not disciplining, I disagree.  I feel that step parents should have some authority within reason. What happens if I'm away on business and he's watching them and my son or daughter does something that I would not approve of? Should they be punished right away or wait a week or two? Just my personal opinion.  I appreciate the feed back from everyone so please don't feel I'm disregarding anyone's opinion.  I asked for anonymous help and every person who has commented has had positive and informative info that I've taken to heart. Thank you all!
Avatar universal
You are right, I did move to be closer to my boyfriend.  I also moved to be closer to my own family.  They are now only a few hours away versus 15 hours away. The reason my son should not go to his father's is due to lack of discipline, health issues and lack of financial responsibility.  Over xmas break, his first visitation, not only did he send my kids back a week early due to it interfering with his new year's eve plans but he also locked them in his truck with the engine going and a loaded pistol (which is not registered).  He told them that if anyone tried to break in to grab the gun and shoot! I just found that out a few months ago.  My son is special needs and requires a shot everynight.... when he was with his father, not once did he receive his meds.  Don't get me wrong, the man loves his kids.  He was just never one to do the hard stuff or make the adult decisions.  I've always had to.  He always wanted to be the "fun" parent, play video games all day and eat fast food.  As for the reason I think he hates my son, I feel that way because my son is very much like his own father.  He wants what he wants when he wants it and if he doesn't get it he acts out.  I get that that is typical kid behavior but he goes a little extreme.
973741 tn?1342346373
Really, for me--------- the title of your post says all I need to know.  I would not live with a man that I suspected hated my child.  That will never be a good enviroment to raise him in.  Ever.  

Again----------  your title is the only thing you should focus on.  It tells you what you need to do.   Don't make your son live with someone who hates him.  
13167 tn?1327197724
I agree with specialmom.    Your title is the core of the problem - all the other stuff just kind of gets in the way of seeing it.  Structure/no structure,  a dad who's ineffective,  moving from one place to another,  all this stuff gets in the way of seeing what you do see - that this man hates your kid.  

It sounds like your son is frustrating to be around sometimes,  and has some disability issues - all the more reason to give him a stable loving home,  so he can reach his potential.  Life isn't going to be easy for your son,   so his home should at least be supportive and loving and encouraging.

I'm also a little put off that your boyfriend can't fake liking him - it's not that hard.  You don't have to like someone to behave as if you do - and that's all that's required here.  
973741 tn?1342346373
Oh no.  I just missed the comment on your son being special needs.  Yeesh.  

Step parents should not have authority in terms of discplining children.  That is a basic therapy recommendation for families with such issues as yours.  A step parent can help you make the rules but you must enforce them or else their is resentment.  They are to discuss parenting with you in private.  This is not a man that your children grew up with in the toddler years . . . this is your new boyfriend thrust upon them.  He should remain supportive.

But I will say-----------  I'd not let someone who not only disliked but hated my children live with them.  Ever.  As Rockrose already said--------  life is already hard enough.
Avatar universal
I agree and disagree with the above posters. I do think forcing the kids to eat everything on their plates is a bit controlling. If they're not hungry, why force them to eat? As far as the rules go, that's great. Granted your boyfriend should NOT be speaking to your son like that. it is not his place nor his responsibility to be your sons father. having the help is great but he shouldn't be telling your 10 yr old to grow up and act like a man. He's 10. He's still just a kid. Kids push boundaries and do what they can to get their way. You should be the one disciplining and sticking to the rules. Not the boyfriend. I also agree that moving in with boyfriend may not have been the best idea. It's probably confusing for the kids. They may not fully understand what this means.

As far as the father goes...he's military with an unregistered weapon?????? My husband is a Marine and there are SERIOUS repricussions if caught with that. If his superiors are strict enough he could be demoted or dishonorably discharged. Which will seriously screw with any job he may even attempt to get. (hubby saw one guy on one base be demoted for an unregistered weapon from sgt to pvt.  while on another base a guy was court martialed for it, dishonorable discharge.)
Avatar universal
Wow.  Your situation is a hard one.  I agree with RockRose, Specialmom and Serious Sam...if this man hates your son, he shouldn't even be around your son.  I was raised from the age of almost 4 by a step parent who did not like me because I wasn't his, because he wanted to be the center of my mom's universe, and because he was of the mindset that children should not be seen or heard.  His bullying and his dictatorship style of discipline was just too much for me and I ended up hating my step dad and seriously resenting my mother for allowing him to treat me that way.  I wouldn't continue to live with this man if I were you.  You're asking for problems.
Avatar universal
I am not so sure your boyfriend hates your son.  My 3 sons had a stepfather, and 25 years later he is the best thing that ever happened to them.  We did have our differences from time to time like all families.  But now that you are living together its like you get to know people a whole lot better once you live with them.  It sounds like your son is quite spoiled and that's both yours and your ex's fault, but not the boy.  Also it isn't up to the step parent to quite that verbal, I think with counseling it might work.  I also agree that the kids come first, but I wouldn't stay in a relationship with children with no rules or guidelines either. Without that there will be no respect in the teen years, so I hope you're ready for that. So it depends on you being honest with yourself and him.  I had 3 sons and they were all indifferent to him at first. But now 25  years later they love and respect him more than they do their own father.  Again I don't know all the details.  
695000 tn?1316139648
Hello.  I just came across your post and I wanted to tell you that I am in almost the same situation as you but I am married.  My husband is a wonderful man to me but not very nice to my son.  He was when we were dating but he changed when we got marrid.  I wrote a post here in 2008 and everyone told me things are going to get worse...but I still loved (and still do) my husband and wanted to try and make things work.  My son is now 12 and he is very well behaved and kind but he just told me that he knows that his step dad doesn't really like him which if you think about it, it's an awful knowledge to have.  So although I don't have any other major issues with my husband, I think I am finally ready to leave him.  I love him but that's not enough.  I know how hard it is to become a single parent again and to not have the support of another person...but I love my son.  He is my 1st committment in life and I have to make sure he lives in a loving invironment.  I thought I could provide that for him by myself...but I was wrong.  My husband doesn't even say anything mean to him (for the most part) but his body language says it all.  I didn't want to face it...still don't, but it's not fair to my 12 years old boy to have to walk on eggshells all the time so he can protect me from a fight with my husband....that's just nuts....so what I am saying...is thing will not get better and I know that from experience.  You need to think real hard and listen to your gut.  I know I won't let my son be subject to things like you said ...but we all have different view on things.  I hope you make the right decision.  I hope I am making the right decision.  
Avatar universal
Speaking from experience.....get out......i had the same issues except for the ex thing but my boyfriend at the time was very controling and hurtful to my son and my son was miserable and it seemed as though the only interaction he had with my son was making him finish his food or getting on to him. The best move i made was leaving, i am now married to a great man who my son now calls dad. I stayed in that relationship for 2 yrs and it makes me sad now to think of all my son went through.....trust your instincts. it doesnt matter if you move back to the same town as your ex just move. do what is best for your kids......
Avatar universal
I'm reading your posts and had to get some of your opinions.  My boyfriend dislikes my teenage daughter.  He's never raised any children but has been divorced and his kids have never lived with him.  My daughter is 14 and is a very hardheaded tough child.  She's been spoiled all her life (my fault).  She has too much freedom and usually gets what she wants.  I'm in a delimma though.  I moved away from her father about 5 years ago.  He had an affair and never had time for her, so I needed to be closer to my family.  He sends child support but never calls her.  Whenever I try to discipline her, she tells me she'll go live with her Dad.  Her Dad, of course will have her in order to avoid the child support.  He doesn't support my discipline because of this reason.  I think that's why I've given in to her so many years.  Due to how spoiled she is, my boyfriend has begun to really dislike her.  He's now to the point of not even talking to her (just walks right by her).  I feel like he isn't even trying but should I blame him.  She is a very hard child to deal with.  My boyfriend grabbed her arm really hard one day and gave her a bruise.  He has yelled and cussed at her calling her a 'stupid ***'.  I've lost alot of respect for him but then he blames it on me for raising her the way I am.  Granted, she does very well in school and is well liked by the teachers and friends.  Now that my boyfriend is moving out (my request after 4 years), he tells me I'll never have anyone that will want to be around 'that child'.  I disagree...  If someone loves me enough, won't they want to love both me and my daughter?
1035252 tn?1427231433
Get out. Now. Anyone that grabbed my daughter, gave her a bruise, OR talked to her that way (much less all three) would not only be on the front door faster than they could blink, but they'd probably have a black eye. I just had it out with my own mother about the things she says to/about my children today, so you can bet I sure as HELL wouldn't stop at standing up to someone like a boyfriend who thought they could treat my child that way.

It does not matter how inappropriately your daughter is acting. She's 14. she's been in an unstable situation with your divorce and moving....her actions are NORMAL. they are EXPECTED.

Your boyfriend is a jerk, an abuser, and bad bad news. He is abusing YOU and manipulating YOU as well, trying to get you to stay by threatening youwith lonliness if you leave him.

You have a choice: your daughter, or your boyfriend. You know which one your should choose. You and your daughter need to get out before he hurts one of you, or before he destroys the relationship you and your daughter should have.

Best of luck, I know it's harsh, but your baby is everything...this man who is abusing her and manipulating you...he is nothing. And yes, what he has done is abuse. You will EASILY find someone who is going to be HAPPY to be with you and be a step-father to your daughter. Don't ever doubt that. But it's not THIS man.
Avatar universal
The kids have had to go through MAJOR Life changes.  THe dad could still keep in touch, but he's not doing it.  Was he doing much better when they still lived in the same town.  Whatever it is just hard bledning in new families and it's upsetting to kids' routines as well.
Avatar universal
Thank you so much for your comments.  He's leaving my home on Saturday - packing as we speak.  My daughter is going to be a 'tough' teenager.  I'm hoping you're right and I can find someone that will be supportive.  I'm scared as ever right now (41 and not getting any younger)
Avatar universal
I have the problem that my boyfriend just told me he hates his life because of my 4 year old and 7 year old girls. They are very demanding and i know that. but i feel hurt by his comment. I had a feeling that he did but never heard him say it till now a year and a half later.
Avatar universal
Good to know I am not alone. I am in the same predicament. I love my boyfriend to death and we never fight unless it's about my son, who is now 19.

He hardly talks to him unless its to give him ****. He also raises his voice to him and to me. I'm pretty much putting up with everything I taught my son NOT to do. I've always told him that a woman is precious, you do not raise your voice, you respect her, etc... so he wonders why I teach him that but its ok for me to be yelled at ? Embarassing....

Sometimes he is nice to him, but its very rare... so he is no role model for my son, not at all. It seems he can do nothing right which is quite frustrating and I cant take it anymore. My son works full time, pays rent, pays his cell phone, he's never here, nevers asks for anything, but the minute he just talks to me, my boyfriend seems upset, his face even changes... its creepy...almost like he is jealous of my love and my relationship with my son. How can he hurt me like that and say he loves me and loves my son ? How can he think that putting me and my son down will make me love him ? I dont get it. I would never do that to his kids. It'a now at the point where we both walk on egg shells, we TRY not to **** him off to save the peace, but there is ALWAYS something....

He talks like an experienced father, but he hasnt seen his kids in 2 years and have never parented full time or alone. I have raised my son myself and im so proud of him. I dont think I can do this much longer... What can I do to make him realize that I love my son and if he doesnt, I will not be with him.

How can I make him understant that he is pushing me away, hurting me and making me very sad ? This is not normal and it's freaking me out. Even if my son will soon be 20, he will always be my son, no matter what. You dont stop parenting and stop loving your kids when they turn 18....

I am 40 years old, he is 37, how can an adult act that way ? I dont get it, im tired of it, I just want someone who is nice to me and nice to my son.. is that too much to ask ? Help!
Avatar universal
It is very normal.Any one can ignore the step child. For avoiding this problem you have to a better understanding with your boyfriend otherwise your children feels unsecured.
Avatar universal
omg, I am dealing with the same thing, My son just turned 18 on April 26th, however he dont yet have a job, but he is trying very hard to find one. He is my whole life beside his brother who is 21 married and in the airforce with a baby, EVERY time my family comes home they stay with us and we end up fighting, NOTHING I do is good enought it seems. I love him. I have been dating him for 4 years now. I THOUGHT once we lived together things would get better but they have only gotten worst. I am so stressed out all the time and all he is doing is pushing me away every day and now he is wanting full accuess to all the bill's and my checking acct.
377493 tn?1356505749
I'm going to be honest in how I would handle problems between a boyfriend and child.  My child does and always will come first.  My husband and I are together, but if something were ever to happen and I was to become involved with another person, my son and I are absolutely a package deal.  I could not be with any man that was not good to my son.
Avatar universal
I am in a situation where my boyfriend of 6 years wants me to move in with him or he will break up with me.  I have joint custody of my 2 children, my daughter is now 19 and away at college during the school year and my son will soon be 17 and will be going into the 12th grade. Although I have joint custody my children never stay at their dad's house, he is remarried with a 3 year old and a 5 year old. So being responsible for my children 24/7 has put a huge strain on my relationship with my boyfriend because my children will have nothing to do with him and he will have nothing to do with my daughter, nor will he make any attempt to get closer to my children because he feels rejected by them even though he is the adult in this situation.  My boyfriend has given me an ultimatum, as I stated above, but he refuses to allow my daughter to move into his house and he wants my son to drive a half an hour to get to school in his senior year. My son has said that he will NOT move into my boyfriends house, as he doesn't want to drive a half hour to school and he is upset that my boyfriend will refuse to allow his sister to move in with us. My son said that he would rather move in with his father, who lives 5 minutes from his high school then have to move. I too am angry and upset that my boyfriend would have me leave my children or break up with me because he is tired of living alone and is obviously lonely. He says that he has waited long enough and is misable because I can not spend more time with him. I understand that he is lonely, but the fact that he is the adult in this situation I feel that he should be the one to try to have a better relationship with my children as we are in fact a package deal.  (let me add that my boyfriend doesn't like my daughter's behavior, as she is still very hurt and angry about the divorce even though it happened 11 years ago, she is obviously emotional stuck, it is what it is and the adults should understand and be emotional supportive and not reject her.)  Let me add that I have over the years, due to the lose of my job in 2010, become financially dependent on my boyfriend and can not find another position where I can make the same salary I was bringing in before the economic crisis. My situation has really put me between a rock and a hard place, as without my boyfriends financial support I will not be able to afford to properly take of my children and will lose them if he breaks up with me, so either way I will lose my children.  There is NO good choice here, either way I will be miserable and my children will be miserable.  My question is, If my boyfriend REALLY loved me how could he possibly give me such an ultimatum, where by either way I would be miserable??? I have asked him to please just wait another year until my son finishes high school and hopefully within that year he and my daughter can try to reconcile and try to have a peaceful relationship with one another.  I just want everyone to get along, is that too much to ask for.  I feel that I have tried to be as adaptable and as flexible as possible. Since my mother and I share a rented house I am able to see my boyfriend a couple of nights a week and my son has been extremely understanding of my situation.  My boyfriend on the other hand also refuses to even come to my house to see me as he doesn't FEEL comfortable or accepted by my children. He also states that he has too much paper work to do and does not have time to come to my house. I believe that he should take the lead, be the adult and work on the relationship with my children, it is not my son or my daughter's job to go out of their way to persue a relationship with my boyfriend.  If anyone can help me out and give me some advise on this DOUBLE EDGED SWORD I would be so very grateful as I am so torn and tormented over this whole situation I am an emotional and physical reck to say the very least.....so please some help me.  I have prayed and prayed about this for months...I am unable to come up with an arrangement whereby ALL parties will be happy.....I am in crisis
377493 tn?1356505749
Please dont`take this as being judgmental, it is not intended to be at all.  I understand that you love your boyfriend and don`t want to lose him.  I can honestly tell you that if this were me, and a man professing to love me and wanting to be with me gave me an ultimatum like that, it would be over between us.  I believe that anyone getting involved with someone that has children has to be prepared to take second seat to children, and that for the most part has to be responsible for making the effort to form a relationship. Divorce is hard on kids and I don`t think it`s uncommon for them to feel anger or resentment toward a parents new partner.  For me, the onus is on that new partner to make every effort to befriend them.  I know this is harder when you are the one in the situation emotionally, but from an outsiders perspective I would end the relationship.  I`m sorry, this cannot be easy I`m sure.
Avatar universal
As the step father to two children for two separate relationships, I'm appalled at some of the comments I've read. My first wife ex, the father of her daughter asked her not to put his name on the birth certificate. He never paid any support, school fees, medical bills, nothing; this was done by me, the step dad. I raised her daughter from 2 years old until she was 9, and I far as a father I was the only one she knew. Her mother would try to get her to call her biological father daddy, and give him the respect of being the father, but it's sad to say even the child had more sense than some of the women I've heard make comments on here. A step parent shouldn't be involved in the discipline is ridiculous. I can cloth her, feed her, raise her, and take care of her, do everything the father should be doing but isn't, but I better not punish her, please give me a break. If the boy is acting out, then yes we need to find out why, but being a brat is just being a brat, and that's not even tolerated in school. I guess going back to his father, the one who would leave him in the truck wi a loaded gun, while the engine is running is a far better man to hand out discipline. Do you women really think before you speak?
973741 tn?1342346373
I think there are different type of blended families.  In one in which a child is well aquainted with their bio parent and they are an active member of their life, the step parent has to be respectful of that.  This is not to say they shouldn't have a say in what happens or discipline, etc. but that it is better if it is discussed with the mother and she follows through.  This is an age old family counseling technique to keep relationships strong between step parents and step kids.  Sadly, many many blended families end in divorce because of issues with step kids.  

I personally would never subject my children to a partner that didn't like them.  That would be so unfair in my opinion and is on me to rectify that situation.  

But a step parent/ step child relationship can be positive under the right conditions.

That is wonderful you stepped up to the plate to help raise someone else's child that failed miserably in that way.  You are indeed acting as father rather than step father in your situation.  If you have been in the picture for a long time, the child may see you as the parent and have the same parent/child conflicts that all families have rather than it being because you are a step parent.  

So, I think there are some valid points made above on how to handle a step situation but every situation is different.  
Avatar universal
Of course I don't think she should have her child live with the father who left him alone in the truck with a loaded gun.  I was just saying that if she truly believes her boyfriend hates her son, she shouldn't subject her son to that.  I lived with a step parent who disliked me, I was a good kid, and it was damaging.
973741 tn?1342346373
I do agree.  The point isn't sending the child to the other 'bad' parent but to make good choices about whom you bring into your children's lives and who can help make a cohesive, happy home life for them verses someone that will do damage because they can't stand the child of their new partner.

I couldn't be with someone that didn't like my children.  My children come first.  
Avatar universal
how about a father who seems to push to hard and get angry i mean to the point of degrading my son and what i mean by that is that he will make him stand sit in one position just to hear a big lecture that he was punished for i feel that is verbal abuse but i may have been wrong a few times what do you think
Avatar universal
I am with Dlwright2u. I am appalled at most of the one sided and close minded opinions from most of the women here. Every situation is different and nobody can properly judge a situation until they see all the angles. Even a therapist would take several sessions to assess the situation. I was raised by a single mom until age 8. Then my mom remarried. I was very attached to my mother and of course I gave my step dad resistance. However, being the strong and smart woman that she is, my mother  made everything a lot easier for my step dad in the sense that she was the disciplinary, she was the one who enforced the rules; and that severely limited the blow of having this new man around. He never laid a finger on me, neither did he need to discipline me at all. He would tell my mother what was going on and then she would take care of business. I appreciate her old school rules and the structure she gave me. It made me the man I am today. I have an 8 year old daughter who is very well behaved and everybody praises me because of her behavior ad great demeanor.
There is a reason why she is that way. My ex and I had similar parenting styles and we were very consistent with her. We never yelled, we never spanked. We were just firm and always addressed the situations as a parental unit. Now I met a great woman and we were together for 2 years, until I left about two months ago. The main reason, not to say the only reason? Her son. A 5 year old spoiled brat. The kids father was never much in the picture and she raised him practically by herself for the first three years. Her and the grandmother made sure to do everything, and I mean everything for this kid. She did not date anybody for three years. He doesn’t even know how to throw a ball. He is extremely attached and dependent on her. He is whinny, defiant, rude, stubborn and to top it all, extremely smart and manipulative. I pleaded with her several times to take him to a child therapist, to no avail. I purchased books about defiant children, to no avail. I had conversations with her, more than I care to remember. I had conversations with him, to no avail. I always ended up being the bad guy, the tyrant, the disciplinary person. I told her many times that that was not my job. That that was her son and she is the one who needed to be the bad cop. Not me. She would resent that I didn’t get affection to him. How could I? This child would make my life miserable and whine and cry and defy me all the time. I always told her. Nobody will love your son like you do. If I was to develop a relationship with him, it would have to come from mutual respect, then everything would work itself out. I never saw her giving hugs or kids or any affection to my daughter, safe from helping her around and buying her stuff. Nor did I expect it or resent it. She has a loving mother and all I wanted was for them to respect each other and be civil. Which was the case. And I was satisfied with that. I have never taken defiance or misbehavior from my daughter, why would I tolerate that from him? On top of that, my daughter would resent  the fact that, instead of having consequences for his bad behavior, he would actually get new clothes, toys, trips to Disney, etc. At her short age she realized that it was unfair and she stated resenting the whole situation. Also, she would try to act out and push the boundaries a little, because she would see that this kid got away with murder. Obviously I cut that right away and talked to her. She went back in the wagon.
My now ex girlfriend did not grow up with any boundaries, or structured parenting. She has struggled through life as a result. Even though she admits she did a poor job raising him, she never really took the necessary steps to correct the situation or try to improve it. I was always the one paying attention to what he did, trying to correct him, etc. How can you build rapport with somebody if the contact you have is negative all the time. She would undermine my authority constantly and discuss things in front of him.
I remember I used to hate certain teachers and even my mom at times, because they used to ride me very hard and try to instill life lessons and discipline. Guess what? I will forever be grateful to them. This kid doesn’t have a male role model. His father is now trying to appear in his life, but by my ex girlfriend’s admittance, she does not want him to be that role model, since he is a liar and a man of poor character.
I took the high road and left because I did not want her to have to choose between me and him, because if I were her, I would chose my daughter any day. Regardless if I am wrong. Just to spare my child. The ironic thing here is that she left the kid’s father while she was pregnant because she could not stand his daughter leaving with them. She left him after just two weeks of living with the stepdaughter. I stayed for two years in the relationship, having faith one day she would actually step up. She never did. I left.
She is trying to get me back, because she knows the kind of man I am and she values that. And she wants me to be the role model for her son. She is now actively trying to get a child therapist for her son and eventually she wants me to participate. I am sure her son has either ADHD or ODD.
What frustrates me is that she, like most women on these forum, are always in denial. They think their son or daughter are to be loved regardless, by whomever they have around them. False. Nobody, NOBODY will love your children unconditionally like you do. If you truly love your children, your job is to prepare them for life. To give them the tools they need to grow and be happy and successful. Your job is not to shield them from everything and put them inside a cocoon. I have been guilty of this myself. My daughter was my first one and hopefully not the last one, and I learned that you have to let them do their thing, but within the rules and proper behavior.
Mothers like my ex girlfriend are the ones who produce all this disassociated kids you see on TV, in the malls, etc. The world is far more violent now. Kids are rude, lost. Why? Look at their parents. They are to blame. What happened to values, morals, rules, respect?
Whether things will work out between my ex girlfriend and I, it’s yet to be seen, but one thing I am sure of, is that I would not sacrifice my peace of mind, my daughter’s happiness and upbringing for somebody else’s kid. No women here would do the same in their right minds. You all say you are a package deal? Great. How about making that deal, a good deal? How about looking at yourself and your kid objectively? How about compromising? How about investing time in giving your child what he/she really needs, not what he/she wants? Reading all this comments make me sad. No wonder our society is in shambles. Mothers used to be the core and the column that supported society. All those “pigs”, all those “cheaters”, all those “liars” as women call men nowadays, guess what? They were raised by women. There aren’t any old school dads out there anymore either. They all bought into the new society Koolaid. Very sad.

973741 tn?1342346373
Sounds like a really good thing you let this woman and her son be.  good luck
Avatar universal
I totally agree you do have the right to make your decision not to sacrifice your peace of mind and some other things in your life.  Your ex-woman really has a situation and she will have to solve the problem by herself with the unconditional love of a mother.  

I only think about the boy's feeling for you.  You said he may have ADHS, but extremely smart.  As his real dad is a man of poor character.  So with your ever father role who brought in many good things into his life, the boy might have taken you as his real father and developed some feeling for you.  My question is how you and your ex-woman explained to the kid about your break-up.  And have you ever came back and visited the kid since you left?

I asked this question because I am a woman and in the exact situation like your ex-woman.  Or worst as I have two boys who are 9 and 7.  The 9 year old has ADHD which was diagnosed just after my ex-partner left us two month ago after 1 year of our living together at my place.  My boys also have a very bad-character dad.  But they are very attached to me.  They are not bad kids, but have some behaviour issues, partly due to cultural differences as we came from Asia 4 years ago.  My elder son is really annoying, but extremely smart and sensitive.  My partner always gave discipline and I did the bad cop.  I always stepped ahead in enforcing the rules and sometimes punishment, leaving the rewarding part to my ex-partner and a lot of authority.  The boys improved a lot in everything, table manner, house choir, behaviour, respect, everything my ex-partner wanted us to do.  I believe we were going the right way, good parenting, happy and healthy kids (mentally and physically).  Although we were under a bit tension as both parents are quite hot temper and were under the pressure of job and my FSA process.  But during that one year, we loved and cared and respected each other and were very proud of our good life.  We just needed a little more time to build a perfect family.  But my ex-partner could not wait.  Not to regard that he has no kid from his previous marriage and neither any experiences with kids.  Still he wants everything to be perfect and can't wait to make thing happened.  And sometimes I heard he said to my elder son to grow up and act like an adult although he has just turned 9 end of last year.  I told myself something wrong here, but tried to believe that we all put enough effort and patience to make thing better.

My ex-partner left us ultimately.  We went to my country for 4wk holiday.  I introduced him to my family without noticing that he seemed mind my family's low profile. (His family is classy).  The trip was tiring with a lot of traveling, we all were tired, kids neglected manner and reacted to the pressure (instead of relax) my ex put on them.  During the trip, he also under some stress as his house was sold after only one week in the market, but then the deposit was delayed for a week, and then finally sold.  Also nobody did his job in his absence so he constantly checked his work email.  My ex-partner said he could not enjoy the whole time of our trip, partly because of the boys being very naughty.  I told him to take it easy as we were on holiday and supposed to feel relax and out of routine.

After we came back from our holiday, immediately the boys went back to normal, calm and well-behaved.  My ex seemed struggle to make a decision.  We went to Cabramatta to buy a lot of ingredients for my cooking as he said he missed my foods the whole holiday.  We came to his place to prepare for the hand-over.  All the high-value items were moved somewhere by his mum while we were away.  I felt the danger, on his last night, I cried a lot.  He told me we need each other, he can't live on his own, and I can't raise the boys on my own.  And we love each other.  I also believe that we still loved each other until that night.  Only it seemed that he has to make a choice.

The next day he went back to work which is only 5 minutes’ drive from my place.  His place is 50 minutes away, that's why we agreed that he moved to live with us a year ago.  His job always had a lot of problems.  He told me he lost his cool and almost collapsed by his desk for stress in the morning on the first day back to work.  He left the office, drove to his mum's place. When his mum drove him to our place in the afternoon, he explained to me and the boys that he got stressed and need some private time away from us.  It was the last time he saw my boys.  He quit work that morning, started seeing councillor for his depression.  His mum dropped him back to my place the next day and gave him 30 minutes to say goodbye to me.  Later on he came back several times to move his things.  I didn't allow the kids to see him as I don't know what he was going to say to them.  He can tell me that we are not good to each other so let's just be friends.  My kids took them as their real father, loved and respected him and changed themselves to please him.  It would be weird for them to be told go back to be friends with him.  He told me I can call and talk to him any time when I need to talk as I don't have any family or relative in this country.  But he never discuss our relationship.  I lost my job four month ago and supposed to find a job after our holiday.  So I am really in a situation right now.  But we don't want him back.  Life became too hard with a lot of pressure.  I agree that he brought into our family good life, but too much stress, very little supportive and trust in one's ability to do good thing.

I am broke, but trying hard not to ask for money from him.  He promised to transfer money to me, but he knew I still can manage my finance until I can get a job.  I always helped him when he came to pack his things.  I am having a lot of problem right now, but money is not the most.  I always think how to help my boys not to suffer any bad impact from my bad experiences in love.  I don't want my mistake to leave any mark in my children' young mind and personality.  How to teach them to love, trust in love, and treat their love ones with loyalty and responsibility.  How to teach them not to leave their loved ones without a good reason and even saying goodbye.  

So my question is what should I and my ex-partner do to save my boys from being irresponsible and doubtful about love?

Sorry for my prolonged post and thank you all for any input.
Avatar universal
yep. my soon to be ex wont call his kids. he's been out of home for 2 years. they can call him. they finally are getting to where they don't call him. now he is mad and wants our 15 year old daughter to live with him and his girlfriend several states away. he pretends the other 2 kids don't exist. his girl friend and him both have had un inns with dhs. and she lost her kids due to both him and her and inapropriat things with children. now he wants our daughter. and my boyfriend hates my daughter. help.
973741 tn?1342346373
Well, two separate problems------ one is really easy.  Your boyfriend doesn't like your daughter.  That's the easy one----  ditch him.  With the drama with our ex going on and all the hurt that has and is causing, do not subject your daughter to more difficult things by bringing someone else into her life that doesn't like her.  I'd NEVER date anyone that had a problem with my kid.  My kid doesn't need that in their life.  So, ditch that guy.  He's NOT worth it.  Your daughter takes precedence over that.

The ex is more complicated.  The best you can do is insulate your children from this creep.  Get a lawyer to protect yourself and your kids.   Sounds like going to live with the ex would be disastrous with your daughter.  He can't make her unless she chooses to go and you don't want that.  Don't give her reason to with a jerk boyfriend that isn't nice to her.  Then love up your kids he ignores as well.  Make them feel good in YOUR home.

good luck
Avatar universal
When kids are spoiled the way she says to the point to eat doritos an soda for breakfast and have every game, toys, etc. the y become selfish and nobody is gonna like them especially the partner, it is nothing wrong with enforcing discipline you should be thankful for that, nobody like o love someone's else kids specially if they are brats and cryers, you are a bad mother for not teaching your kids how life really is and overprotecting them, itsn't too bad, at least he isn't beating them, believe nobody is gonna want a woman with two kids where he is never gonna be the priority it is hard to accept that position
973741 tn?1342346373
This is why it so rarely works out for relationships in which there are kids from a previous marriage/relationship are involved.  I would NEVER subject my kids to this kind of stuff personally.  
Avatar universal

Out of all the comments on here you are the only person that talks sense. I have a 7 year old son. His biological father has had nothing do do with him since i ended the relationship due to domestic violence. Me and my partner have been together for about 3 years now and we live together. When we first got together he asked me outright if I wanted him to support me when it came to my child. I said yes. If this man was going to clothe and feed him, help with paying for a roof over his head, teach him how to do maths, ride a bike ect why should he NOT teach him about being respectful? about the attitude he shows? about the behaviour he exhibits? punish him when hes naughty? You cant expect to take "all the good" but not have any of the bad..... Its a lesson that I have had to learn. I dont like the way that my BF shouts at my son, I dont like the way that he punishes him when hes being naughty..... but as HIS FATHER FIGURE then he as a RIGHT to do so. It upsets me to hear my son cry, it hurts me when he calls for me when hes on a time out... but do I go in an effectively"cut of my bfs balls" by undermining him? We argued last night because I thought he was being to hard on my son - but in reality hes not hitting him, hurting him.... hes just teaching him to be a better person, and I keep fu**ing it all up to the point that I was in floods of tears and HE was threatening to leave, if i didnt allow him to be a proper father. Being a dad has nothing to do with blood. Its about what you DO for the child... and it cant be all "Happy happy joy joy"" all the time. Its a hard lesson that I have learnt. My partner is a good man, he works hard and love us both......... I need to adjust my way of thinking.  - If he was his biological father i really wouldn't have a choice in the way he was disciplined.
17258107 tn?1455036833
Wow Brooke050870- Im so grateful for your post..been reading all of this as Ive been in the same situation the last year. Been with my bf only a year and moved into a house together 6 months ago. It has been a nightmare from the start as he has clearly failed to accept my 9 and also 18 year old boys as part of my life. He is irritated by absolutely everything they do. (and they are truly both lovely boys) The house is not their home and we have all been treading on eggshells for months. Because of this we are ending as I told him I won't have a life like this for my boys (particularly my 9 year old-who has been through enough with me and his father divorcing)
When it comes to your children, a chosen partner must accept that the home needs to be loving and supportive and he should act as a guide and concentrate on building trust before enforcing discipline. I wonder how many of the rules this lady would have in her home if the bf wasn't around. I began changing for a while and creating harsh rules just to keep peace with bf- until I realised. Hopefully I can repair any damage from my terrible mistake.
I certainly won't be moving in with another until I am absolutely certain, the man I have chosen wants the whole package and is going to be patient and supportive. Thank you again anyway.
I am really happy to finally be leaving my boyfriend of four years. "Walking on eggshells" --I'm done with it too! I have an easy going, charasmatic 11 yr-old son. He does his chores and homework and is always respectful (sounds too perfect but I reaaly am lucky he is this way). My partner tried his best to be a supportive partner but his insecurity and disinterest in my son continued to be a problem.

Just as Brooke explained, I tried to resolve every issue my boyfriend brought up but he would throw in these insults about my son saying "he's awkward, a mama's boy and so on. I felt like some of his points were valid which was why I introduced more responsibility, had him cut his own steak and prepare his dinner plate. My son accepted his new chores and learned to be more independent.

During the last couple years, when he couldn't think of things to complain about my son, he was still pretty much ignoring him. In fact, he was so very content when my son was in his room and began increasingly drawn away to his room. But my boyfriend was still having angry outbursts every couple months. He'd get very emotional in just seconds and begin raising his voice and became a little scary.  I tried to follow doctors' advice online about blended families and being patient and communicating, family discussions, everything. But in the end, I realized my boyfriend needs to deal with his anger problem and feel secure in himself.

I can now enjoy quality time with my son without feeling that jealousy, steaming from my boyfriend. He leaves Saturday, and though we have a great friendship, we will never be partners again. I also will not put my son through this again. My only regret: not breaking up sooner.
I absolutely agree! I'm going through a similar thing right now, and so grateful for this thread. And for your comment! All the best. and we can help it too - I realised and decided to be much more observant next time about my future partner building a relationship with my (now 11 yr old) son  instead of my last ex partner leaving him be and ignoring him or criticising or complaining about him only! My son said he doesn't like him - no wonder! They actually rarely spoke in the 2 years we've been together, he only complained about my sons behaviour when the kid was naughty, the air was so heavy and rigid it could be cut at times. Of course I suffered a major lack of emotional support and warmth as well quite often from him, until I realised the potential harm and admitted how we felt and quit an unbalanced relationship...People forget that they have to input more than just discipline. True support, love and attention and of course disciplining have to be all in balance. Then they are good role models not without it
Avatar universal
I too feel torn. My boyfriend and I have been together for two years living together for one. I have a 9 year old son and a 17 year old daughter. He has a 6 year old and 4 year old both girls. I developed a healthy positive relationship with his kids early on and I speak to them with respect even when disciplining. They return the "favor" by respecting me in return. The youngest is challenging but I refuse to get into a power struggle with her. I interact with his girls I spend time with them I make them feel loved. Now comes the issue...my son and bf bump heads! Two males both Alpha Omegas! Prior to my bf my children and I were very close especially me and my son. We had this discussion and I thought we were in agreement to make the transition as easy as possible NOPE not easy at all!!! My bf came in a wrecking ball he wants all control he only notices my son's mistakes never praises him. He never spends time with him. He constantly interferes with me disciplining him which we agreed we would not do to one another. I am guilty of being a mama bear I have stepped back and allowed him to correct my son but man does he get ridiculous. He yells and grabs on him. He is demeaning which escalates things it never resolves the situation. Example: my son said he didn't want to eat a hamburger I said well you will try to eat and that is we aren't going to argue about it. Here comes my bf "oh you don't want a hamburger who do you think you are you don't run the show you are 9 I will beat your *** and continues running his mouth" so I remove my son from and guess what he eats his food! I cannot tolerate nor handle the unnecessary stress. I have had this convo so many times he doesn't care he see it his way. I am looking at it from the emotional well being of a child and teaching him respect. You cannot teach a young man respect by being demeaning you can discipline within reasonable means. I am still learning too but I am not going to tolerate this. I treat his children like my own. I dont expect him to be like me nor am I looking for a father for my son his father is involved. However we are supposed to be a family unit teaching family values and morals not anger and division!
Dumb his sorry A**. Kids only 10 & 7 years old. they don't know any better, why hate them? Educate them if u fail to do so. They are just kids for God Shake. What kind of man is he, and what kind of mom are you? even asked what to do? Really? He is more important than your kids?
Avatar universal
Hello, I am no doctor but a 27 yr old man who has grown up in 3 broken homes. My mom left my dad when I was 10 and that's when it all started. My dad would tell me when I was 11 that no other man would ever love me like my real parents and now after having a daughter of my own who is now 4 I have come to find that one of the truest things he has ever said. Your boyfriend will never understand the bond between you and your kids. Your son is going through deep mental issues that can ruin his outlook on life for the rest of his. Your boyfriend is not helping whatsoever. If this continues disciplining your child this way especially through his teenage years he is going to grow up resenting you for putting this man Into his life. I seen this happen to my cousin who also grew up in a broken home. His mom loved the new boyfriend and the boyfriend ended up hating her son because he kept acting out over the years due to the boyfriend (now husband) and started doing drugs. My cousin's life is a mess but he has very good morals and knows how to treat people respectively. I seen similiar results with my brother. Both of them when they turned 18 left their mothers to go stay anywhere they could that wasn't her, both won't get real jobs and live in sub par environments. I always had decent relationships with my moms partners unlike my brother or cousin and have a good career and am able to support my family and have a good life.same with my younger cousin the brother of the cousin I've been writing about.  Your husband grew up in a different time when broken homes weren't as common as they are today. Look at the world look what that generation has left the kids today. It's not good kids are going unloved and joining gangs, lashing out. Which had kids and now look at the kids today. We have to invest our love and care for our children while retaining strictness not in a Demi I have way but a loving way. The kids are our future. We need to plant the seeds which will bloom for them. The things your boyfriend is saying his putting your son down when he needs it most and I'm sorry but when your boyfriend is saying things like this you need to speak up once in a while in front of your son so he knows he comes first and that you have his back. Not on every situation but the ones you can see your boyfriend took things to far. I hate referencing children to dogs but do you want a confident child or a beaten down dog?
Avatar universal
I am in the same situation has u rite now.I love my bf but love my kids more meaning bf hads to go  kids come first.
Avatar universal
I'm experiencing somewhat of the same issue my baby just came home after a 2yr battle with dcpp and his father... My bf been here supportive of the whole fight but once baby came home things have been a pure headache I don't ask him to watch or take care of my son it's just he is distance .... I feel pissed like why say your ok with something if you're not
I'm sorry to read this saviemom.  You worked hard to get your kiddo back.  I think I would not allow your boyfriend to rain on that and make a peaceful new home for your child.  Which is unfortunate---  wish you could have both but if your boyfriend isn't going to be loving and good to your child after a difficult time with his bio dad, you gotta pick your baby over that and create a loving environment.  good luck!!
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