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Some issues with step kids


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Old 20th January 2018, 2:39 PM   #16
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It’s funny how this comes up so often. Do people honestly think we got married without discussing it? Sort of throw it to the wind and see what happens?

The discussions happened of course. We agreed that I would serve as their predominant father figure and we wouldn’t interfere with the biological dad. Then their relationship soured. Now it’s different.

and it will be different again - over the course of their lives and your family.

We had years where Stepkids barely spoke to their dad (and his wife) and we were THE parents - and times where we (both their mom and I) felt they picked their dad and wife over us and we got crap. Up and down - round and round - sour, sweet, sour.
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Old 20th January 2018, 4:00 PM   #17
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My question still holds though - am I correct in honoring the real fathers place? No matter why I will be a fixture in the kids lives. To them I am dad. And I am fine with it.

Here is the question I had. The problem is not the kids. The potential issue is how mom treats the biological father.
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Old 21st January 2018, 2:37 PM   #18
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Here is the question I had. The problem is not the kids. The potential issue is how mom treats the biological father.
This is where the title of your thread should come from.

So what is wrong with the way she is treating the Bio D?
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Old 22nd January 2018, 3:36 AM   #19
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I had a more verbose title but something in it got kicked out as obscene. I don't remember what it was but the site helpfully changed it to this. I wasn't paying attention and poof you got the title.

My bad really. I noticed all this only after the post.

The biological mom is not respecting the biological fathers rights. She sets plans with him, but will change them if she feels it's warranted.

I am not sure if this behavior should be concerning to me. I am concerned, but I don't want to say anything if I am in the wrong.

I have zero experience dealing with these types of interactions.
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Old 22nd January 2018, 2:49 PM   #20
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I had a more verbose title but something in it got kicked out as obscene. I don't remember what it was but the site helpfully changed it to this. I wasn't paying attention and poof you got the title.

My bad really. I noticed all this only after the post.

The biological mom is not respecting the biological fathers rights. She sets plans with him, but will change them if she feels it's warranted.

I am not sure if this behavior should be concerning to me. I am concerned, but I don't want to say anything if I am in the wrong.

I have zero experience dealing with these types of interactions.
In those situations MYOB.
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Old 22nd January 2018, 11:44 PM   #21
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When does this become my issue?

She wants me to move things around in my schedule to allow for the curtailing.

I can totally see where I should be quiet about this (hence the thread) but I am not interested in supporting this. I think she is wrong for curtailing his visits and that enabling this is only going to lead to bad things.

I would prefer to hold firm and not adjust things. I know if I was a dad I would be livid with this behavior.
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Old 24th January 2018, 1:28 PM   #22
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As someone who was a child to a step-dad, who also had a father that was rarely in the picture, I hope I can give a different perspective for you on this. Whether or not you want it, you're now a father figure. You're the one that's there the majority of the time, it's you they will grow up depending on, it's you who will have the bigger influence and not the actual birth father. While you don't need to give in and adopt the children (clearly you are not wanting that and that is okay), you should probably step up and accept that you are in a father figure role now. It's up to you to help your wife discipline the children, take care of their needs, be there for them, etc. It's good to stand firm on not letting your wife push the birth father out of the picture, it's healthy for the children to keep that connection (as long as it is safe and no drugs, alcohol, abuse are present).

You married a woman that has the majority of custody of young children, did you really not expect you would have to be a father figure?
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Old 24th January 2018, 2:05 PM   #23
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My son was 4 years old when me and his biological father got divorced. I met my now husband (married 30 yrs) and waited over a year before introducing him to my son. My son's biological father would visit now and again, he saw my son maybe twice a year, often not turning up for visits. My son was heartbroken when he didn't show up and would take weeks and weeks to not be upset by it all. My ex then met a lovely woman who had a 6 year old daughter, he went to step parenting classes while neglecting to see his son.

He never paid any money, despite having a well paid job, he rang my son one weekend to tell him he was at Heathrow and going to the States, to live. My son was heartbroken al over again. He called my husband by his name for a while, the day we got married he called him Dad and has done ever since. They have a great relationship, the ex hasn't been in touch since he moved, except for a meeting arranged by my son's cousin where his father happened to be there. It was a disaster.

All the time he was popping in every now and again was a huge upheaval for my boy, he would think he had done something wrong and TBH although I wanted his father to have contact I couldn't force him to and frankly, he didn't deserve to be called a father. I hid my thoughts from my boy, but privately I was glad he was out of the picture when I could see he wasn't committed, this to stop my son being so hurt.

fast forward 28 years and my ex was in the same city as my son, by now he had a son by his now wife, my son found out on Facebook where my ex said he had two children, his step daughter and his son, forgetting my son completely. despite him being an adult, it still hurts him, he met his father and had nothing in common with him, he says he doesn't need a Dad, he has one, my husband.

The point of this sharing is that while the ex husband and biological father should be encouraged to be a part of the children's lives, popping up every now and again isn't doing that, it is a token visit and not what being a Father should be. You, to all extent and purpose are their Dad, you are there at the end of each day and it is you who will be their role model. if their father was stepping up then of course he would and should have more say, but he isn't. I always disciplined our son, when boys get to teenage years and are denied something they can be very hurtful, just once our boy said, you aren't my father, it broke my husband's heart. Now, they are so, so close. My exes loss.

If you are willing and going to be a good Dad, let them call you what they choose. Children give love and trust to those they love and trust, to be called Dad by choice is a huge privilege and responsibility, but I am sure you know that.
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Old 25th January 2018, 10:02 AM   #24
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Originally Posted by viatori patuit View Post
When does this become my issue?

She wants me to move things around in my schedule to allow for the curtailing.

I can totally see where I should be quiet about this (hence the thread) but I am not interested in supporting this. I think she is wrong for curtailing his visits and that enabling this is only going to lead to bad things.

I would prefer to hold firm and not adjust things. I know if I was a dad I would be livid with this behavior.
I very strongly agree with you. You are right. It's not gray.

I suggest you tell her this clearly - but! do so in a place, and at a time that you are able to listen, and she is able to respond with her own feelings. Don't be her parent - that is, you don't start setting rules for her behavior. You set the rules (they're called boundaries when they apply to yourself) for your own actions. You tell her that no, you will not purposely do things to make it difficult for the kids' biodad to see them, in any way, and you won't let yourself be used as an excuse to make it difficult for him.

Stay calm, and listen, and stay calm, and repeat that if needed. I don't think you need to justify it, just repeat it if needed. Don't get drawn into an argument over it. Be calm and clear on that, and listen and sympathize with her where you can.

I also agree very strongly with some other posts that you need to consider yourself their father. Please don't be uncomfortable that they want to call you Dad (sounds like you aren't) - you didn't push them to call you Dad, it's their choice. That is beautiful, and something to be cherished. I would suggest not correcting them when they call you Dad.

I think legally adopting them at this point is not realistic nor worth the drama, but suggest that you and your wife, and both your families make a ceremony very soon! Within two or three weeks. Since you just recently married, you have a great opportunity to set the frame for your relationship with your step kids.

It would be simple and short, a second wedding ceremony with your wife, except this time have a family member or friend take the place of the pastor, and instead of "do you take this woman to be your wife", have them say, "do you take this woman and these children to be your family". And have them ask your wife and her children, "do you take this man to be your family". Do you think that would work for you wife (in place of adoption?).

This is all predicated on the idea that you intend to be their father forever, which you stated, and I take you at your word.

Last edited by Sunlight72; 25th January 2018 at 10:08 AM..
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Old 25th January 2018, 10:42 AM   #25
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As a "biodad" I find the term insulting. No way in hell would another man be permitted to be called dad or father to my child. This father is not absent nor a deadbeat. Minimizing his $600 monthly contribution is tad disrespectful.

The battle is with the mom and her X. Dont start one with the X and you. If the father is opposed to it, you must stand down. It is his right and neither divorce nor a spiteful X can change that. You can not seek peace and war at the same time.

Last edited by Cullenbohannon; 25th January 2018 at 10:51 AM..
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Old 25th January 2018, 11:08 AM   #26
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Stay out of the disagreements with your wife and her ex. Let them hash out their visitation schedules. You are the 'Dad', the male authority figure in your house, in your house. No, your wife should not be doing anything to diminish their father's role.
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Old 5th February 2018, 9:06 AM   #27
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I'm unclear on something... you say he pays next to nothing in support and you then posted ($600) is he paying the $600 or is that what he is supposed to pay and is not paying? $600 isn't next to nothing, it's actually on the high end for most people in terms of support.
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Old 5th February 2018, 9:57 AM   #28
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I like Sunlight's advice (post #24) except am not sure about the ceremony idea at this point.

Imo, you're going to need to start having some conversations with your wife about this when the kids aren't around, of course. I'd present to her the idea of how she would feel if her ex had custody of the kids and tried to edge her out of time she was supposed to have with them.

You probably would be well served to get a third party (counselor) involved in this as it seems to me this type of issue has the potential to grow into a bigger problem than it already seems to be and to negatively affect your marriage. Blending a family isn't easy. I didn't remarry after my divorce but my ex has remarried several times and the wives have added stress to my ex's R with our children all three times.
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Old 11th February 2018, 12:56 PM   #29
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Re

This is a tough situation. I'm a divorced single mom to a 10 year old wonderful boy. I am not in a new relationship but my ex always is to some degree.

I can only offer this. Every child is different in how they react to a divorce. My ex fought me hard to have visitation even though when my son is with him he dumps him on family or his new flavor of the month. Even though he sees our son I of course I have to fight to get the child support he agreed to pay. Some bio dads, not all want to maintain visitation to keep tabs on their exes. Some don't. What I'm trying to say is, you're there with them everyday.

You are dad now. I applaud you for giving their bio dad his respect. And your wife shouldn't push him out but I believe this happens sometimes because of negative feelings that she has for the ex. It's probably very easy for her and the kids to feel out of sight out of mind with him because they see you in action everyday doing the job. It's not your fault or your wife's fault that he only seems them up to 5 times a year.

That's hardly nothing at all and that's on him. Not her or you. He has a right to see them and giving him his respect is the right thing to do. But understand how your wife feels and the children. Bio dad is barely there so why wouldn't she look more to her husband? The man she is with who agreed to honor her, cherish her and is the one on site helping her? Talk to her but also try to understand where she is coming from.

I hope this helps.
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