I have been with my partner for 9 years, he has two children to his ex a boy aged 15 and a girl aged 13. We also have a three year old daughter, so I have been in his children’s lives since they were six and four. You wouldn’t think so though, the way they talk to me. I get major attitude from them, especially when their dad is not home. The boy actually lives with us and does not see his mum at all, due to the guy she married trying to discipline him and the mum backing him up and other things but that’s another long story. So he came to live here as his dad works long hours and he knows that he gets more freedom here. See the problem there is since he was young his dad has led him to believe that I cannot tell him what to do or not to do. Minor things are ok like clean your room but I am getting into arguments with him because he doesn’t think he should have to do any chores at home as I am a stay at home mum at the moment he has said that I should just do it all. When I grew up we all had chores and most people I know make their kids help around the house, I know when my daughter gets older she will be helping. It’s not so much making them do things it’s teaching them respect. My stepson tells me when I show him respect he will show me respect. The problems is my partner and his parents have always told him everything about all that is going on, where I think a lot of the conversations should have only been between adults so my stepson now thinks everything is his business. I am always telling my partner I would rather talk about things without his son listening all the time. I know it is not his fault as that is how he has been brought up here and at his mums place when he was still going there. But he is old enough to know that you should respect your elders. The main thing that upsets me is that I do everything for him that his mum should do and I still get him telling me I’m not his mum. I know I am not his mum but a little bit of respect and appreciation wouldn’t hurt. This is how it works, what he says and does is none of my business but I am expected to drive him anywhere he needs to go and do whatever he needs me to do for him. I know it sounds like a typical teenager but it is hard when he tells me he hates me always has and dad could find someone heaps better. I know he loves his younger sister(my daughter) but he is going to make it very hard to live here as she gets older and feels his hatred towards me, that’s if she doesn’t already. He still does not get that I am with his father because we love each other and I chose to love him and his sister as well and now we have a gorgeous little girl in the family to love. I just want him to realise I am not going anywhere and I do care about him but he doesn’t seem to understand. Oh well, I want people to know that unless step parents have got support from the whole family it is not going to be easy. I hope we can get through this phase and when he gets a little older he realises that I care about him and only want to help him grow into a decent person.

Posted by ksinclair17, 24th June 2013

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  • I really feel for you. It’s a difficult situation when you haven’t got the necessary backing from family members, but even more so that your step son is demanding that you respect him, which unfortunately is not uncommon with this generation and not having the boundaries set by his father regarding your authority wouldn’t help the matter. I think you sound like an amazing person to look at things in such a level headed and objective way and with the sincere concern you show as well. I hope this situation improves for you.


  • being step mum


  • being a step mum


  • I hope your partner is supportive my partner had 2 children from his marriage and then we had one together and his children where only coming every 2nd wkend but the problems started when we would have things on and he would refuse not to have his children and much more it got so bad me and our son where always last and treated like crap and he left me to raise our baby 1 yr old son on my own s he could have his older kids 13 and 12 when he wanted and never gave a crap about me or our son


  • Firstly, I feel for you. Its a horrible stage to go through. Mr 16 used to get along really well with his step-dad (my hubby) until a few years ago when he just started gaining an attitude. He’d been with his step-dad for 8 years prior without a problem. Makes it hard as hubby and I have a child together so it puts me in a difficult position.

    On the other side, my first hubby was going through the same horrors with his step-daughter (Miss 14) . I received a call from him one day extremely upset as he’d decided to move out as they couldn’t continue fighting all the time. They are now going to family counselling trying to get through it as a family as they too have a child together.

    Families are hard and as I keep saying to both hubby 1 and hubby 2 – it will get better once they are adults (oh I hope so!)


  • What a caring person you are. I only hope as he gets older that he understands this.


  • So difficult – nothing will work unless his dad backs you. He needs boundaries.


  • Thanks for your support, we tried him in counselling a few years ago and he told his dad he didn’t want to go so guess what he didn’t have to. His dad backs me up occasionally but not enough to make a difference. I do believe if he got a smack when he was younger it may have made a difference. I know it did with my siblings and I and most of my nieces and nephew. I have never had a child treat me the way he does. Doesn’t make it any easier when all my family live in another state. I am looking forward to school holidays I am going to visit them for a week. I just remind myself that he is getting older which means he will be working soon and get his own life which might teach him how to respect other people and realise the way he is at home is wrong.


  • You poor thing I don’t know what you can do, at his age I think you are going to find it hard to change him, have you spoken to your husband about it all? Maybe some group councilling may help


  • Oh you poor thing, it would drive me mad, especially the little horror demanding respect! I really really wish sometimes smacking was still socially acceptable, as, although in most circumstances unneccessary, in cases like this it would do wonders! “The hand of knowledge on the seat of learning” worked well at teaching older generations about respecting their elders!


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