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Sick of being labelled the evil step mum! (Rant)

6 years I've been with my husband, he has an 8 yr old. Because of the ridiculous amount of money his ex demands he has to work Saturdays so I look after the 8yr old few the few hours he's at work on Saturday. We've got a message saying "miss8 doesn't want to stay with (my name) while you're not there because she's mean" Mean? I do everything for this girl, I get all her school supplies, label and cover books with her favourite characters, deck her room out in monster high stuff, take her to the movies every other Saturday, buy her gifts, pack her school lunch for the Monday, cook her meals, wash her clothes, clean her room, do all the "mum" stuff. If she misbehaves she is disciplined (within reason!) but I'm mean? I know it's mostly poisoning from her mum who hates me but I'm over it. I'm done!

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Answers (7)

This is why I couldn't be a step parent, I wouldn't be able to cope - more power to you! You are doing a fantastic job and she's just being a cow. My daughter said pretty much the same thing about her step mum - we had a chat about respect and how much step mum had done for her and how it wasn't ok to resent her step mum because she wanted mum and dad together. Her dad and I have been separated since day one, so she's never seen us together and thought if step mum was out of the way, we'd play happily families. Obviously once explained it changed. I stood up for SM and her right to discipline if my daughter misbehaved (within reason also) and it just stopped. Took about a month of consistent conversations and stuff, but we got there. I know that doesn't help you much because her mums probably mouthing off - does she have a step dad? I'd probably rely on your hubby to discipline her when she mistreats you, or simply, don't come over if dad's not here. How does mum have control over what dad pays anyway?

OP Coming from a BM that is so nice!!! Thank you!! I wish you were SD's BM!
I'm honestly sick of them both dictating what happens in my home. SD will only come here on condition, the condition that she gets to bring a friend, dad takes her to be park, to bounce, to the shops, it's always something. And it is allowrd every time, which I think is sick, she's 8 she doesn't call the shots. BM is the same, will only allow visits if she gets money for this or that, she's very high conflict so if she's ever told no she'll scream and shout and say he'll never see his daughter ever again then make Miss8 say goodbye "forever". She's a horrible person, I'm sorry but she is! I'm at the point where I wanna scream this is my house! You don't tell me what happens in my house!!! Ugh! Sorry I probably sound just as horrible now! I'm just at my limit!

helpful (0) 
 I would completely disengage - you have a woman and an 8 year old controlling your life! It's ridiculous! Hubby needs to stand up and say enough - it won't be forever, they'll get over it and come back. If you don't do anything about it, it'll keep going forever.... it sounds horrible and you don't deserve it. Stand your ground - you can't let everyone walk all over you. What does your husband say??
helpful (4) 
OP Yep, I've just put my foot down. I got a screenshot of SD sending a text from BMs phone saying it's too boring here, apparently a DS, a Wiiu and a PlayStation plus swing set, millions of toys and a younger sister are not fun enough and she's only coming over if dad takes her on bike rides and plays games (which he does anyway just not enough apparently) I said enough is enough, she doesn't dictate what happens and when, she is a child and I'll be damned if his ex and an 8yr old tell me how things are being done in my house. There's probably gonna be a fight but nope, I won't have it. Absolutely not.
helpful (0) 
 Hubby needs to support you, hopefully he realises that with no argument. I hope things get better, you're doing the right thing ❤️
helpful (3) 
OP Thank you! I'm hoping he does too but even if he cracks it I'm not changing my mind. My foot is down, end of story. ❤
helpful (5) 
OP He has backed me up without argument! I feel so relieved! Phew, I can breathe!
helpful (10) 

All kids say that about their parents, step parents, grandparents, teachers, siblings when they don't get their way. Despite the nice things they do for them. Sounds like her mother is using this as leverage against you in the most pathetic way. Well, she can't have it both ways. If she wants more money from your husband, he has to work extra hours and I'm assuming she doesn't expect him to take his daughter with him!

OP I know they do it's just very frustrating. As the step parent you have to work extra hard for that respect and love that is given to the bio parent and you have to the tow the line so as not to overstep the boundary. We're expected to love them as our own but only when it's convenient for the bio parent. Tough gig. This has been an ongoing thing over the 6 years. Whenever SD is unhappy about something it's my fault. Every time.
helpful (0) 

I had a similar experience with my step kids, we fought to be allowed to take them to the Gold Coast for a week. Then they turn up for a visit with the itinerary for the week all planned, and apparently they weren't coming if we didn't do what they wanted. We just said ok as some of it was similar and just did what we had planned to anyway, I was not going to theme parks every day.

Give her mum the choice of sticking with the schedule or going to court. Tell your sd to get over it. You will get there just stay strong!

OP Yeah I plan on saying that to DP tonight, im not going to be catering to their every whim and desire! Too bad, so sad!
helpful (3) 

I don't think you are mean at all, it sounds like you are disciplining her as she needs and you are trying really hard which you should be commended.
Your husband isn't working to pay for his ex though, he is working to pay for his kid, as he should.

OP Thank you! He pays wayyy more than he's legally required (which I think is great!) but BM just takes the piss, constantly telling us things cost way more than what they do then when we finally get proof of purchase or a receipt it's way less than what she said.
helpful (0) 
 Just give her the amount csa tells you to pay, then offer to pay for school uniform, shoes or sport (just examples). You pay for the item not give her the money.
helpful (3) 
 Im first commenter, fair enough then! Sounds like your DP is doing more than his share!
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How frustrating for you. This is why I don't think I could ever be a step mum because of bio mums who want to cause trouble instead of working together to become a united front for the child. Your step daughter is stuck in the middle and probably trying to make her mum feel better and you are the easy target. Just keep doing what you are doing and give it some time. Your husband might have to give up Saturday work and be there and her mum can figure out how to get by on less child support. Stay strong beautiful step mumma, in a few years hopefully step daughter will be able to see clearer that you have tried so hard to build a relationship with her and she will really appriciate it.

OP She's so high conflict it drives me nuts. I'm ready to disengage tbh, to completely withdraw. I have a child of my own who needs my love and attention, I'm constantly being pulled down and blamed for everything! I've given it 6yrs and it's still not improving. I'm just having a bad day I think 😓 Thank you for your kind words tho! They are not unappreciated!
helpful (1) 

Whilst I think you are doing a good job and don't deserve the criticism I don't think being a step mum is the issue. You have a different parenting style to her biological mum, who I would say is a helicopter parent that engineer's every aspect of her daughter's social life. You seem more relaxed and laid back about kids play and time at home. This is definitely not the norm these days at 8 most girls are out shopping, going out with friends and putting it all up on instagram. It seems like your step daughter lives a faster life with her biological mum and you come off as mean for refusing to have your life revolve around her.

OP I think it more stems from BM's bitterness tbh, she's so bitter about hubby moving on and having a missus and other kids while she doesn't. I just don't feel the need to cater to every desire a child demands (bio or step!) I'm not going to fill every second of every day with exactly what the kid wants to do, this is a home, with rules and chores AND fun time!
helpful (2) 
 What 8 year olds are you around? Not a single 8 yo girl I know is out shopping with her friends and using Instagram.
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OP I actually thought that too hahahah!!
helpful (1) 
 My daughter is 9 and none of her friends are out shopping on Instagram. They must have all skipped that phase.
helpful (1)