HomeWorking MothersWhat should I do about my marriage when I can’t stand my step children?
Posted in Working Mothers on 27th December 2010

What should I do about my marriage when I can’t stand my step children?
I am currently married to a wonderful man. I love him and he loves me. We get along well….EXCEPT for when it comes to his children. He has 3 children and I have 2. His children have always had behavioral problems. They visit therapists weekly and we are working with them as much as we can. However, two of the three are simply out of control. His daughter is completely disrespectful to me, and his son has fits of rage. I need to add that the “mother” is in and out of the picture. She visits with her children only when it is convenient for her. This seems to contribute to the childrens behavior problems. The problem is…I simply can’t stand his kids. I have tried and tried to treat them like my own, but I always end up frustrated and feeling horrible about the way I feel for them. Lately the problems at home have gotten so bad, I don’t even want to go home. What can I do? I hate feeling the way I do, but I don’t know how to change it. Am I headed for divorce?

Best answer(s):

Answer by harrybush01
put your foot down, if not with the kids with hubby. he needs to know how you really feel. maybe an utimatum is in order

Answer by Susie D
You’re headed for something.

These kids didn’t magically *poof* up after you said I do – these children were their long before. How do you think they feel? Their own mother is a flake and their stepmother hates them (and if you think they don’t know – you’re wrong, kids pick up on things). Sounds like they’ve had some serious issues to deal with in their young lives.

If you cannot love those children and treat them the way they need to be treated in order to grow in good adults then get out of dodge before you screw them up even more.

Answer by Kristi S
I know as a parent if i were to ever get divorced and remarried I would pick my kids over any person. If you make him pick you will be headed for a divorce. You also have to put yourself in the kids shoes if your mom left and then dad got remarried and took on two other kids i am sure that is hard. I would not stand for the behavior and stick to the discipline talk to your husband do not tell him you hate his kids cause that will casue more problems but tell him the need more then just counseling then sit the kids down and give them consequences for what htey are doing and if they do it this is what will happen so hwen it comes around they know also do the same with your kids so they don’t feel like yours are the favorite kids and get special treatment

Answer by katydid
Your question breaks my heart. I was in a similar situation and it almost broke up our marriage. We went to counseling and several thousand dollars later, I learned:
1. Your husband MUST step up to the plate and train his children to be civilized and respectful
2. You are only a step parent. Sounds mean but that’s the way it is. The more you try to “fix” things, the more the kids will resent you.
You must EXPECT your husband to do his job. If he can’t I doubt this marriage will make it. But I wish you strength and luck.

Answer by tballbabe
It’s never easy raising children, so woman up and stick by your husband i bet he doesn’t think your 2 kids are angels all the time either… it’s a two way street…

Answer by belle
Sit down with your husband and make house rules and consequences. My son was a “problem” when he lived with my mom and was on meds for ADD and Bi-polar disorder. He came to live with me and tested my rules and consequences briefly, then settled in beautifully-no meds. They need structure and your husband needs to be on board.

Answer by miscraterr
let your husband know how you feel if he really cares about how you feel he will do some thing about how his kids r acting and try to have a talk with their mama and let her know to if she still don’t want any thing to do with them just work on the issue with your husband. hope i help you out

Answer by Rebecca W
Why would you treat them like your own? They already have a mother and you already have children. However the house rules should be the same for everyone and they should be listed and posted for all to see. You, your husband and their therapist could work on this together. All the children should have the same consequences for breaking the rules and these should also be posted. The disrespect can be addressed in this way without finger pointing. The fits of rage should be dealt with through the use of correctly done time-outs. (please research the proper way to to a time out)
It is difficult to deal with children who have behavior problems, especially in a step-parent situation, just remember the behaviors these children are exhibiting are not personally directed at you. They are directing their pain outward and you just happen to be a convenient target.

Hang in there, it does get better!

Answer by Aundrea
Unfortunately, this is something that you should have known all about before getting married. If your Husband and you cannot stand united with his children’s behavior especially about his daughter’s disrepect and maybe medication for his son’s anger issues then I feel that it would be in everyone’s best intrest to part ways.

However, this is your choice. Maybe the two of you should seek counseling? Obviously you care greatly, maybe therapy would do you both some good.

Answer by Marcie
Didn’t you know he had children before you married him? Seems like that is part of the committment you made. I have NEVER heard anyone say that step kids are easy and kids with problems are hell….. I suggest that you get into therapy.. Not because anything is wrong with you… just so you can get extra support, help, and perhaps some professional suggestions for coping with their behavior I knkow this is difficult AND I do believe you that this is HORRIBLY frustrating and painful. I doubt that divorce would be any LESS painful than going through this fire. Just get the help you need to make it through this fire!

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