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Topic : Co-Parenting

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Created on : Thursday, June 30, 2005, 12:44:44 pm
Author : dataimport
Are you sharing a child with someone who doesn't live with you? Share your story and your strategies for effective parenting.

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January 14, 2006, 10:35 pm CST

Dr. Phil-we need a show on Rules for Step Parents in a Co-Parenting Family

Quote From: kristawood

This woman has a lot of nerve! I hate women like that. Although I am in no position to give you legal advise and I can tell you that I feel for you on this. The new wives move in and try to take over. One of these days, your girls will grow and and if they are this old now, they will probably remember whats going on. They will resent her and probably their father for what she is doing. You just be the best mother you can, bite your tongue, hire a lawyer if you want, pay your support and PRAY. Before you know it, your girls will be grown.  

Hope things get better for you. 

I can really relate!  Split since 1996 after 12 years together, divorced in 1997 - our son born in 1994.  Ex gets girlfriend  when our son is almost four.  They marry in 1999.  She seemed like a good addition at first.  Until she started "protecting" my ex-husband from his ex-wife.   

  

In the past, I made the decisions regarding the care and raising of our son (my ex let me "handle" the decisions).  Now she was on the scene and had to prove her worth and started to challenge the choices, the agreements, brought in lawyers (repeatedly) and generally attempted to wreak havoc on my life and position as my son's mother in our lives, the school and community at large.  SHE set the play dates,  and threw the parties for the entire school - I was the ONLY person at the school not invited to these functions, even when my son would ask me "why don't you come to the parties, Mommy?" - she would have an answer for him about privacy.  She needed for all the world to see what a happy "family" they had and attempted to "erase" me.  No children of her own.  No idea how much she violates my boundaries as a step parent, I have since made it clear how much it bothers me to see her coming and going at school during my weeks and she doesn't care if she's violating the boundaries and stepping on my toes.  It's not like she's filling a void, I am an active, participating, involved Mom in our son's life!  She just has NO life.  She volunteers so much at my son's schools - since kindergarten -  (she hasn't worked most of the time, I have) that I started being introduced as "his real mom".  My ex abdicated the parenting decisions and responsibilities to her long ago.  Our son even says "she's the strictest parent he has (and he DOES resent that)".  My son sees a therapist to deal with these issues.  He knows that his dad has ALLOWED her to take over the responsibilities of being "the parent' in their house.  She behaves as though he is her child.    Our son is 11 now.    

  

Most of these years, I played nice when it came to parenting.   When our son was around,  I took the high road.  I tried to cooperate and pretend like it didn't hurt.  Until they went on a 5 week vacation and I lost touch with our son for 11 days - I was frantic and unable to reach them by cell or pager .  I had "trusted" my ex again and didn't have their itinerary as they said I'd be able to reach them on the cell.  I had to go to our son's school to find her family's emergency numbers in order to track them down.  Then, our son could only call me at 4:00 am (7:00 EST) because that's when she told him to call - the only time I'd be certain to be home to accept the collect calls.  After that, I was done playing nice and cooperative. 

  

It made me sad to hear on Dr. Phils show this week that "papers don't parent, parents do".  I wish that were true.  I have had to resort to the black and white letters on the page and nothing else to prevent any more problems.  I wish that my son had more say in where he spent his time and didn't feel like some court ordered him to be at one home or the other.  I had once hoped that we'd be able to have a more fluid agreement and that we'd be more comfortable in the divorce.  But it's just gotten worse every year.   

  

She's got what she's worked hard to achieve.  My ex and I don't speak, we fax.  And lately, I had to cut that off...because she'd the one who composes the letters and when I got a 22 page fax, I said that was abusive and cut that off.  They can call if they want, or mail me.  They don't share their email address with me.  She is guaranteed to value to my ex, because she's gotten rid of everyone else...slowly but surely.   He needs to endure it all because he can't afford to divorce her, even if he wanted to...and my son is paying the price.   He has to lie to her and tell her that they are having "father/son time" in order to allow my son to do things that we both as parents would normally allow him to do, but SHE would not! 

  

I pray daily that God will direct me and my ex in the best way to raise our son.  That maybe something will happen to change that environment.  In some ways, I've seen small changes that I've asked for and been addressing with them and have asked for God's help to change.  So, I know that there's been some relief and I have faith that we're not alone in this challenge and that we will be guided in the right direction. 

As angry as I get at times, I am thankful that there is no physical abuse.  That neither of them is doing drugs or drinking to excess while he's with them.  And that somehow through all of this, we've managed to raise a smart, loving boy.    

  

He's getting to pre-adolescence and I expect that it's going to get more interesting as his voice gets stronger - he definitely has an opinion and will eventually share it with them and me.  His dad and I alternate weeks for the 50/50 custody.  I know the day is coming when our little Leo will roar and let them know what he thinks of it all.  I only hope that there is no negative repercussion to him as a result.    

  

Dr. Phil:  we need a show devoted to showing what successful co-parenting looks like and one that has rules to guide step-parents in what level of involvement they should have in the children's lives.  Maybe you can address the "fathers of convenience" who allow the step moms to take over...it amazes me to see how impotent they look sitting next to these controlling women!  Like that man you had on the show this week that was married to "Kimmie"!   

  

Too bad it takes thousands and thousands of dollars in therapy and lawyers fees to get through these divorces...if we had all that money in a savings account , our kids could go to the best colleges and have great lives! 

  

Here's to the parents in this world who are trying to raise good kids in spite of all our self-imposed difficulties!!!  We picked them at first, didn't we?  May we all make it to our children's adulthood in one piece!!! 

  

 
January 16, 2006, 2:04 pm CST

fathers have no rights...

I am a mother of 2 children, and me and thier dad are no longer married but we get for the most part get along. We have never gone by our divorce papers, we have done what we thought has been best for the kids. However I am remarried to a man that has a 2 and half year old son that the mother is doing everything and anything possible to keep him from his son. He has been in and out of court for 2 years over this. She has turned him over to department of children services not once but 2 times, both times the case was dropped, she has had him arrested for phone harrassment and he never even talked to her, he left a message, she has tried having me arrested, and went as far as to date my ex husband.....he has spent about 8 thousand on 3 different lawyers, she has been in contempt, well I have lost count of that, but he took her to court 3 times on contempt and nothing ever happens, she has a good lawyer and he always looks like the bad guy, he pays his child support every week, he does owe her back pay, he has agreed to pay that the only question is the amount. He went 6 months without seeing him at all because she wouldn't let him. It is like a control thing with her, any man that is willing and capable of being a father why is it he has no rights? He just want to see thier son, and if she gets ticked off about something she will just not let him see him, and that is not in the best interest of the child....I could go on and on, we keep a log of everything and it is just so sad that you have to do this and I just do not understand especially being a mother myself, I am glad my ex is doing his part as thier father not just paying me but being involved in their lifes. Someone please explain to me why this happens, I know my husband is not the only one out thier that this happens to and I think it is so sad for the children involved but what can you do? I just need advice....
 
January 16, 2006, 5:02 pm CST

I believe you misunderstood

Quote From: charmom2

I am new to this sight and just reading your story. I am saddenby this . I am a single parent of 2 children and have datedother single parents. I do know that if I am dating someone for as long as you I would be upset that I am not more a part of his life let alone his child's. This has been going on for too many years as it is. I would say you should go to the party and if there is a problem explain to the little girl that it isn't you , but the mom that doesn't want you there and then have her mother explain the reasoning. As for the faither , well I would dump him if he can't stand up for you and himself. You need to find someone who want a family picture with you to send to his family and if he has children include them. The little girl is going to be 5 and will understand. If you are unconfortable bring your best friend or sister with you. ( bring a very nice gift too) enjoy yourself. You never know you may feel better about yourself.
 The problem isn't my boyfriend it is the mother. I am very much a part of  both his life as well as his daughter. We go on vacation together. I'm always there when she comes over on his weekends. I can go to her birthday party, my boyfriend has told me he has no problem with me attending and that he would support my decesion. The problem is that I do not want her mother to start a scene. She had a tantrum at her daughters second birthday when my name was mentioned I could only imagine what she would do if I actually showed up. The picture that he took with her mother and her happened once and never again, (he also didn't send the pictures to anyone they are in the closet) I mentioned that because I wanted to know if I was overeacting when I got upset and told him how alienated I felt. I wanted to know if it was appropriate or was I being selfish. Like I said before i'm just worried about what her mother will try to tell her to get back at us because she doesn't want me to be a part of her daughters life. For as long as I have been around she has tried to paint a picture to her daughter of me being a mean and horrible person. I was torn as to wether to go to the party b/c of what the repercussions might be. I just wanted to know should I stay away from parties and other functions in her life to avoid controversy or should I go b/c his daughter asks me.
 
January 19, 2006, 9:19 am CST

Kids Re-Connecting with Father

I am a single mother of 5 children ages ranging from 11 - 5 years old. I have just found their dad who has been gone for 5 years from their life. He owes 37,000.00 in back child support. Which child support has not been doing their job over the years. He has been working with the same company for several years, they always told me they can't locate him. Well I did locate him. They are just lazy people. But anyway. Alot of emtions have come about since talking with him. He has lied so far about who he is with. My oldest child is a boy who has been out of control with his behavioral. So that is why I have always looked for their father. Well upon talking with him, he does seem concerned about his child. In one way I feel it would be good for him to eventually go and live with him and another side says no way. I told my ex I would have to meet his girlfriend before I would allow my child to come and stay with him. He said his business is his. But I know I would not send my child unless I knew her and there was somewhat of a relationship built between us. Then there is the other 4 children we have together. I gave him all info on child support and he said he would call, but as always he has not called. I know what state he is in and have a cell phone , but I feel calling child support is a waste of time, they havent found him in the 5 years he has been gone, but I have. That does not make sense. He does have a social security number and he does work. They would always tell me they don't know his where abouts and they can't locate him. But he as a CDL license , and they can't find him, Ya right!!!. BUt anyway I just have alot for emtions. I want us to beable to talk with one another and to get along, any suggestions out there??? Help if you can.
 
January 19, 2006, 10:03 am CST

Co-Parenting

Quote From: kmr107

I can really relate!  Split since 1996 after 12 years together, divorced in 1997 - our son born in 1994.  Ex gets girlfriend  when our son is almost four.  They marry in 1999.  She seemed like a good addition at first.  Until she started "protecting" my ex-husband from his ex-wife.   

  

In the past, I made the decisions regarding the care and raising of our son (my ex let me "handle" the decisions).  Now she was on the scene and had to prove her worth and started to challenge the choices, the agreements, brought in lawyers (repeatedly) and generally attempted to wreak havoc on my life and position as my son's mother in our lives, the school and community at large.  SHE set the play dates,  and threw the parties for the entire school - I was the ONLY person at the school not invited to these functions, even when my son would ask me "why don't you come to the parties, Mommy?" - she would have an answer for him about privacy.  She needed for all the world to see what a happy "family" they had and attempted to "erase" me.  No children of her own.  No idea how much she violates my boundaries as a step parent, I have since made it clear how much it bothers me to see her coming and going at school during my weeks and she doesn't care if she's violating the boundaries and stepping on my toes.  It's not like she's filling a void, I am an active, participating, involved Mom in our son's life!  She just has NO life.  She volunteers so much at my son's schools - since kindergarten -  (she hasn't worked most of the time, I have) that I started being introduced as "his real mom".  My ex abdicated the parenting decisions and responsibilities to her long ago.  Our son even says "she's the strictest parent he has (and he DOES resent that)".  My son sees a therapist to deal with these issues.  He knows that his dad has ALLOWED her to take over the responsibilities of being "the parent' in their house.  She behaves as though he is her child.    Our son is 11 now.    

  

Most of these years, I played nice when it came to parenting.   When our son was around,  I took the high road.  I tried to cooperate and pretend like it didn't hurt.  Until they went on a 5 week vacation and I lost touch with our son for 11 days - I was frantic and unable to reach them by cell or pager .  I had "trusted" my ex again and didn't have their itinerary as they said I'd be able to reach them on the cell.  I had to go to our son's school to find her family's emergency numbers in order to track them down.  Then, our son could only call me at 4:00 am (7:00 EST) because that's when she told him to call - the only time I'd be certain to be home to accept the collect calls.  After that, I was done playing nice and cooperative. 

  

It made me sad to hear on Dr. Phils show this week that "papers don't parent, parents do".  I wish that were true.  I have had to resort to the black and white letters on the page and nothing else to prevent any more problems.  I wish that my son had more say in where he spent his time and didn't feel like some court ordered him to be at one home or the other.  I had once hoped that we'd be able to have a more fluid agreement and that we'd be more comfortable in the divorce.  But it's just gotten worse every year.   

  

She's got what she's worked hard to achieve.  My ex and I don't speak, we fax.  And lately, I had to cut that off...because she'd the one who composes the letters and when I got a 22 page fax, I said that was abusive and cut that off.  They can call if they want, or mail me.  They don't share their email address with me.  She is guaranteed to value to my ex, because she's gotten rid of everyone else...slowly but surely.   He needs to endure it all because he can't afford to divorce her, even if he wanted to...and my son is paying the price.   He has to lie to her and tell her that they are having "father/son time" in order to allow my son to do things that we both as parents would normally allow him to do, but SHE would not! 

  

I pray daily that God will direct me and my ex in the best way to raise our son.  That maybe something will happen to change that environment.  In some ways, I've seen small changes that I've asked for and been addressing with them and have asked for God's help to change.  So, I know that there's been some relief and I have faith that we're not alone in this challenge and that we will be guided in the right direction. 

As angry as I get at times, I am thankful that there is no physical abuse.  That neither of them is doing drugs or drinking to excess while he's with them.  And that somehow through all of this, we've managed to raise a smart, loving boy.    

  

He's getting to pre-adolescence and I expect that it's going to get more interesting as his voice gets stronger - he definitely has an opinion and will eventually share it with them and me.  His dad and I alternate weeks for the 50/50 custody.  I know the day is coming when our little Leo will roar and let them know what he thinks of it all.  I only hope that there is no negative repercussion to him as a result.    

  

Dr. Phil:  we need a show devoted to showing what successful co-parenting looks like and one that has rules to guide step-parents in what level of involvement they should have in the children's lives.  Maybe you can address the "fathers of convenience" who allow the step moms to take over...it amazes me to see how impotent they look sitting next to these controlling women!  Like that man you had on the show this week that was married to "Kimmie"!   

  

Too bad it takes thousands and thousands of dollars in therapy and lawyers fees to get through these divorces...if we had all that money in a savings account , our kids could go to the best colleges and have great lives! 

  

Here's to the parents in this world who are trying to raise good kids in spite of all our self-imposed difficulties!!!  We picked them at first, didn't we?  May we all make it to our children's adulthood in one piece!!! 

  

did you ever think that this woman might truly care about your son, and want what is best for him?  That you and she disagree about what is best for him does make for a difficulat situation, but you haven't described any "awful" or "abusive" behavior on the part of your son's stepmother and and father.  It sounds like your son has three adults in his life who care about him very much.  I fail to understand how an extra loving adult  in the life of a child can be anything but good.  He loves you each for different reasons, and the only real problem is that it is (understandably) difficult for his mother to see another woman nurturing him.
 
January 19, 2006, 4:27 pm CST

Haven't you missed the point?

Quote From: suzabelle7

did you ever think that this woman might truly care about your son, and want what is best for him?  That you and she disagree about what is best for him does make for a difficulat situation, but you haven't described any "awful" or "abusive" behavior on the part of your son's stepmother and and father.  It sounds like your son has three adults in his life who care about him very much.  I fail to understand how an extra loving adult  in the life of a child can be anything but good.  He loves you each for different reasons, and the only real problem is that it is (understandably) difficult for his mother to see another woman nurturing him.
I read the original post as one of those situations where the step mother attempts to push the natural mother out of the picture because she wants to pretend her husband hasn't got a past.
 
January 20, 2006, 3:51 am CST

Need of some advice from single mothers.

Hi, I'm a father of 2 and I do have a post in this thread way down in the may 2005 i think.  

  

Well I need some single mothers advice because it is your prospective i need more than anyone else's 

  

My eldest child is almost 4, Me and the mother has never dated etc, the past i think is irrelevent except that the mother made me feel like I had no rights and was not apart of my daughters life, She met a guy when she was 5 months pregnant with my child and he became "dad" and they both told me he was taking all roles as the father and I would be called by my christian name. I was not happy about this but naive as i was thought i couldnt stop any of this, so i slinked off into the background, the mother occasionally emailed me asking me or telling me to go over to see our daughter but she never ever was polite about it, she was always seeming abusive, like she never really wanted me there but out of a sense of duty she had to ask, She did send me emails with photo's of our little girl and told me updates. I saw my daughter when she was 8 months old, the mother and her fiance brought her over to my state, I felt so many emotions she was/is beutiful and she is my little girl, I made a plan there and then to be IN her life as much as possible but i slowly became withdrawn again when the mother and fiance returned back to their state, Well at the end of 2003 (my daughter was 21 months old) I started calling my daughter on the phone, I also told the mother that I had another child on the way that he/she would be born the following year. She became even weirder, first she was very cold towards me, then her and her fiance split up and she became very friendly, she even asked our daughter while i was on the phone if she wanted to start calling me dad, I got off the phone floating...the next time i called the mother referred to me as my name and i asked her after i got off the phone, what happened to being called "dad" she abused me and told me I would not be called dad until I went over there for our daughters birthday. I was not happy and we ended up arugeing, Well i found out her and fiance were back together, she caused many arguements with my sons mother, and then once my sons mother and I argued and we almost lost the friendship my daughters mother became very friendly with me...Ok cutting it short. After i went to her state to see our daughter the mother told me she had feelings for me, so we fooled around, the next day i went home and she blackmailed me, either i told my sons mother or she would (me and my sons mother were not together) so i told her,  cutting it shorter we had a small "affair" again from April  till October 2004. in this time I spent in the april 7 days with my daughter (i stayed with the mother and my daughter) the August I spent 11 days in a holiday cabin with my daughter and took her out on my own several times, i babysat my daughter and her sister also and no problems. In January 2005, I spent 7 days with my daughter and her mother again, and I spent time alone with my daughter, the whole time my daughter was with me alone she enjoyed it and she had no problems with not having her mother there. Everything went bad in April 2005, the mother told me I could not see my daughter on my own (I told her i wanted nothing to do with her after lieing to my sons mother in the feb) she told me also that if i did not pay $100 for the trip i would not see my daughter much. Well i saw her once. At this point. I asked for contact orders.  

  

ok this is where i need you lovely ladies advice and opinion 

  

I have asked for my daughter to have contact with me in my state... but for it to be gradual, so for the first 2 years i fly over to her state for 2 weeks (1 week each) and have 1 overnight increased per 7 days of  contact and the none overnight nights I have her for the day only. And then once overnight contact has been established for the full 7 days, spend 1 week in her state and then change it so she has full contact in my state with me and her half brother, She will also be coming in October to my state for two weeks (so it would be 2 weeks in her state and 2 weeks in my state before the full contact is established) 

  

she would be 6 and a half when the first full contact starts in my state, I am asking also that when my daughter turns almost 8 that she starts spending alternative christmas/birthdays with me. so it would be 7 times a year in my state, I understand that she will want me in her state for things, And i thought that adding 1 "extra" week of contact when ever my daughter wants me in her state as she grows up, it doesnt mean i have her overnight just means I get to watch her sports games or school things i can also fly out for a weekend. 

  

the reason i'm asking for it to be in my state is because to fly out there for 2 weeks a year 2 times a year or even once for 2 weeks it's going to cost me $1500AU dollars each contact, with flight fares, accomodation food etc and i haven't got that much money, I also want to spend more time with my daughter and My daughter has expressed that she wanted to play with her half-brother whom i could not take with me because i couldnt afford it.  

  

the mother is disagreeing saying, my daughters life is in her state, i should be going there to be in my daughters life, not my daughter in my life, she said if my daughter wants to see my son i should take him with me. I have expressed my financial problem and she said she couldn't careless. She has offered me her place of residence to stay, I have expressed that me and her will never be and that i don't want my daughter to start believing that her mummy and daddy might get back together, also I have in love with my sons mother who has been my friend for 6 years now and i know that she would be a problem with her if we ever do get together (i havent told her my feelings yet) at that point also I will have to provide for her, my son, my stepdaughter and myself. the mother has offered me her place to stay and she wont be there, I have two problems with that. I dont want to push her out of her own home and her youngest child too, its not fair. 2) it is still not good for my daughter, because she iwll never get use to me and staying somewhere else, she will always be in the sercurity of HER MUMS home.  

the other offer was to stay at her parents house, I dont want to do that because I would feel I am entrapped to do as the mother wants due to it being her parents and again with my daughter it would cause the same security problems. I am reluctant to spend the next 12 years or until my daughter speaks out, in a hotel with her..... it is not fair or in the best interest of my daughter espeacially when there is my home back in my state where she will have her own room, toys, books etc and her half-brother. I feel that she might also feel like she is a seperate part of my life except in the october when she flys out with her mum to my state. 

  

This is what the mother is asking for. 

  

That i go to her state in the january and July, that she comes to my state in the october for 2 weeks but i am to return my daughter to her while i work, and not (if i do get together to my sons mother) my sons mother. which would leave me with a few hours of contact and no overnights. She wants me to fly every second christmas to her state and stay in a hotel or her home with my daughter, and same with my daughters birthday. I feel sorry for my daughter for her christmas she will have gone from a family for christmas to just her father, a family birthday party to just her father in a hotel.  

  

Am I requesting something horrible or something that is common? Any help would be appreciated.  I might have missed out stuff but this is getting so long! 

 
January 21, 2006, 3:06 pm CST

ToxicCoParents

I am a remarried mother of 3, with two stepchildren who live with my husband and I.  My oldest child is in college, and independent now.  The four boys are 8, 14, and each of us has a 15 year old from our previous marriage.  My 14 year old is autistic.  The marriage is great.  The kids get along well- especially the oldest two.  Sometimes when I listen to the activity in our home I am filled with gratitude for the family we have created.   

The only fly in the ointment is the ex's.  They seem to spend all of their parenting time trashing my husband and I.  It's no surprise, really, but it's escalating.  the older two boys spend a lot of time regurgitating the horrible things our ex's say about us.  A lot of it is revisionist-telling stories the way they want them to be.  My husbands son tells stories about how his mother never really left them, didn't actually have an affair with her current husband, lost everything in the divorce and is now suffereing. He complains that I said his mother is not a good parent.  If cornered he will admit I never actually said this, but he can tell I think it.  And I do- he's no dummy.  She pays no child support, but pickes up some of the boys clothing and daycare expenses.  We can't rely on that, however, so sometimes we buy clothes, and we will stop sending the youngest boy to daycare next month.  He likes to play there after school, but I'm home, so it's not worth the trouble of having her threaten not to pay tuition every month.    My son goes on about how I ruined his fathers life and left him holding the bag for the damage, and now he's begun talking about how I don't really love my new husband, I'm just using him for support.  I no longer work outside the home, and the ex's seem to have huge issues with this.  So the boys complain that I stay home all day and do nothing and then make them do all the work when they come home.  I make them pick up after themselves and clean their rooms.  Occasionally I ask them to carry stuff upstairs for me.  This past week I taught them how to do their own laundry- they were complaining about the level of service I was providing.  I make a nice from scratch meal every night and clean for 6 people.   The laundry alone is amazing- I have two washer dryer sets in my laundry room.   

Here's the deal- the mother left her husband children for another man.  She doesn't exersize her mid week parenting time unless we insist, and she tends not to pick them up for her holidays.  She manages to squeeze in a lot of trash in about three days a month.    My ex was a hard drinking abusive man who wasn't very involved with his children when they lived with him.  He sees them regularly, but won't pay for their medical expenses as per the divorce decree.  He sued for custody when I remarried and moved across state lines and lost.  

These were people we did not want to spend our lives with.  We do not want to burden our children with the details-past or present.    We do not want to engage in name calling.  We want to set a good example and go forward.  It's getting harder to pull off, and I am in favor of sitting down with all of the kids and discussing the ugly open issues they are bringing home. I want to tell them to knock it off.  My husband doesn't want to.  He thinks it will pass and someday they will understand.  I fee that the poison is just too much for children to deal with and I want to stop it.  It's certainly affecting the way I feel about the kids.  I find myself avoiding them, and being less affectionate than I'd like to be.  At least toward the big ones- the younger two are not really involved much in this situation, they just get to watch!   

  

I'd be interested to know what some of you would do in our place.   

 
January 26, 2006, 2:40 pm CST

Sharing Children

 Well lets start by saying I am 33 and I am remarried with 3 children from my previous marriage.  I have a son who will be 14 this year and 2 daughters who will be 11 and 12.  My ex remarried as well and he has a biological child with his wife and 1 more on the way.  My problem is that he and his wife refuse to call me "mom" in their home.  My youngest daughter has a hard time calling me mom even to her friends who come over to visit her at her dad's home.  Now they live with their father but we have joint custody (whatever that means, cause it sure feels like he has sole).  My ex has stated that his wife is also a mother to our kids and he demands that they call her mom.

My ex husband and his wife get upset with my children when they ask to call me on the phone and   they both tell the children that "mom" is right here. (referring to her)  Its no wonder my children feel uncomfortable in front of them by calling me mom.  Just this past tuesday my daughter told me that their step-mother said they had to call her mom here in my home.  I don't know what to do anymore.  I have bent over backwards trying to please them and to listen to things they say, but I divorced my husband and he still tries to be in control.

In the beginning when they got married (3 years ago) I was only referred to as "birth mother' " I was furious!  Now its Mom ________ (my last name.)  His wife states that she finds it degrading to call her step-mom, to me that is what she is, but I find it hurtful to try to take my privialige away as a mom.

Help me if you can.
 
January 27, 2006, 3:06 am CST

Tell her she's a Mum!

Quote From: funstuff

 Well lets start by saying I am 33 and I am remarried with 3 children from my previous marriage.  I have a son who will be 14 this year and 2 daughters who will be 11 and 12.  My ex remarried as well and he has a biological child with his wife and 1 more on the way.  My problem is that he and his wife refuse to call me "mom" in their home.  My youngest daughter has a hard time calling me mom even to her friends who come over to visit her at her dad's home.  Now they live with their father but we have joint custody (whatever that means, cause it sure feels like he has sole).  My ex has stated that his wife is also a mother to our kids and he demands that they call her mom.

My ex husband and his wife get upset with my children when they ask to call me on the phone and   they both tell the children that "mom" is right here. (referring to her)  Its no wonder my children feel uncomfortable in front of them by calling me mom.  Just this past tuesday my daughter told me that their step-mother said they had to call her mom here in my home.  I don't know what to do anymore.  I have bent over backwards trying to please them and to listen to things they say, but I divorced my husband and he still tries to be in control.

In the beginning when they got married (3 years ago) I was only referred to as "birth mother' " I was furious!  Now its Mom ________ (my last name.)  His wife states that she finds it degrading to call her step-mom, to me that is what she is, but I find it hurtful to try to take my privialige away as a mom.

Help me if you can.

Here in England we say Mum, not Mom.  You could tell the ex she's Mum and you're Mom or take on our label yourself.  (Mum comes across as less apple pie.)   

  

  

 
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