I Hate Feeling So Resentful!

stepmothers, mothers, stepmom, stepfamily, stepchildren, remarriage, divorce, parenting, gossip, ex, ex-wife, Stepfamily help, Barbara Goldberg
Stepmother Lament: Why Do I Feel This Resentment?

Don’t you hate feeling resentment?  Resentment is that feeling of doing things that you just don’t want to do, yet feel obligated to do.  When I feel resentment, I feel as if I am being childish. I feel guilty and I feel bad about me.  Usually feelings of resentment center around thoughts that we have been taught are “bad”.  Maybe, you can relate to some of these:

“I really don’t look forward to my stepchildren’s time with us.”

“I don’t want to keep cleaning up after everyone.  The children don’t seem to have any responsibility, yet I have no say in how things are done around here.”

“I have enough to do.  Why can’t their parents deal with the children and leave me out of it?”

“Sometimes, I don’t like any of my family members.”

When you read the above feelings, you might think, “I would never admit to feeling like this.”  Can you relate?

If you can relate at all, I am willing to bet that you have only expressed these feelings to your best friend, if anyone at all.  After all, who would want anyone else to know that you are a “bad person”.  Who could possibly understand?  Your mind will answer and say, “No one will understand.”  The irony is that biological parents feel like this at times.  But, when a step parent feels that way, it seems to be especially heinous.

Here is one of the secrets of resentment.  Whenever any human feels that they have been treated unfairly, judged or wronged, we feel those emotions very deeply.  It is part of our human DNA.  When we hold onto our resentment and that resentment goes unexpressed, that resentment gets worse. Our feelings tend to grow roots and become more intense.  If human emotions are not released in a healthy, effective and timely way, those resentful thoughts ruminate in our minds.  Resentment becomes hard to shake.  In fact, resentment becomes stronger the longer it is ignored.  Like a parasite, resentment starts to feed on our negative emotions.  We start to see things from a very unbalanced perspective.  Every part of our life is seen through a veil of resentment.

We start seeing ourselves through this veil of resentment.  The anger emanating from the resentment starts getting pointed towards ourselves and not towards the person it was directed towards.  Why?  Many of us were taught that feelings like resentment were “bad” and so we bury them.  Anger starts to grow towards ourselves and towards our partners and their past.  “It’s true.  I am a bad person.”  Then, we wonder, “Maybe, this relationship is a failure.”

What you resist, persists.  As scary as it may sound, you have to start expressing these feelings and showing your vulnerable side to your partner, perhaps, the children and, perhaps, the ex.  Although we would be outside of our comfort zone, the way we communicate makes the difference.  Talk about how you feel.

“When no one does the dishes, it makes me feel as if I am the maid and not valued here.”

“I feel unloved when the kids are here and you allow them to be disrespectful to me.”

Give yourself and your partner the gift of forgiveness.  Don’t be so hard on yourself.  Lighten up on your partner and the children.  Everyone is doing the best they can at this particular time.  Forgiveness and resentment cannot live in the same space.  Your thoughts are just that…thoughts.  They do not define who you are.  The same goes for your partner.  Give each other some leeway.


**Note: This blog about resentment holds true but the advice may change for those of you that have a high conflict, narcissistic family member.


43 Responses to I Hate Feeling So Resentful!

  1. Resentment is precisely what you have highlighted, and a person very much DOES get to feeling particularly heinous and guilty. I think you hit the nail on the head with your article. I think giving things some leeway is a great idea, however, I often wonder when “letting something breathe” and allow something to go on for too long, might overlap. I am new to the world of pseudo-step parenting, as I am not married to my boyfriend yet. However, I read these articles about “Disneyland Dad’s” and “Uncle Dads” and I feel as if I am dating one of those guys. The particularly difficult sticking point is the lack of structure in his household with his children. I ask if they have homework and he begins to defend them as though he’s the oldest of all the children and why don’t I stop nagging them already. So, I begin to feel as though it is not my role to review their homework or be sure they’re teeth are brushed and then I feel very torn about just sitting idly by while grades are failing and teeth are rotting. After all, I don’t allow my own kids to go without doing homework, so why would I dismiss it in his children? But it seems in my method of “caring” for his children and desiring to have structure, he has found it to be very intrusive and I believe it will be the demise of our relationship. But a true partnership is one in which we respect each other, listen to each other, and try to view things from the others’ perspective. Allowing some breathing room is always a good idea, but sometimes it’s just not going to work.

  2. Resentment is something that took me a long time to accept. It is supposed to be ‘bad’ to be resentful, as though it is my fault I am resentful and I should be perfectly loving and accepting all the time. It is hard to care and be involved for years, only to have your partner and children seemingly not care. Well, in my case anyway. I have had to detach slowly from caring so much. I finally realised, I do not have a say. Like the commenter above, I came to realise my interference is not wanted even if it comes from a good place and is only going to benefit them. For a long time I was resentful, maybe I still am, but as you say in your post if it’s not addressed it just grows into something worse. Unfortunately responses to,“I feel unloved when the kids are here and you allow them to be disrespectful to me” result in ‘don’t be silly’ or ‘ you’re crazy’… so seeking understanding is not that easy.

  3. This is a great blog! I am finishing up a book that deals with the whole idea of blending a family. As a woman who married and blended a family, I can tell you firsthand about resentment! My step children spend every first and third weekend with us. Sometimes I don’t want to be bothered! Not because I have an issue with them, but I’ve worked hard all week and I’m tired! My daughter who lives with us may be with her dad for the weekend and I want a child free weekend! But noooooooooo, because my husband agreed to 1st and 3rd weekend his ex-wife pretty much tries to force it on us!

    I’ve had to learn not to get my “panties’ all in a bunch. It is what it is. I do what I do when I need a break and my daughter is at home. I go in my room and I close the door and relax. I let my husband deal with them! I was able to let go of resentment once I realized that my feelings were normal parental feelings and not that of an evil witch! Who cares what others think! If I’m tired I’m tired:)

  4. I’m very much in this situation. We have his 2 boys every other week. They have no structure, respect, or discipline. My husband wants me to perform the motherly duties and raise his kids; but if I try to set up guidelines, rules, fuss about grades and dish out restrictions, the tide quickly turns. I’m the bi*ch. Just last night, I was talking to the youngest one about school work. He is apparently missing 14 out of 16 assignments in one class. He has 3 F’s in his classes. He swears he has turned everything in and doesn’t know why his on-line grades are reflecting missing work. I tried to talk to him that he needs to communicate with his teacher and find out what is going on. I got the nasty stink-eye look and the “whatever” thrown out to me. I told him just to go sit with his dad, who was on the couch. Dad gives a roll of his eyes and a big huff over the situation. He doesn’t want to deal with his kids. He caters to them because he’s scared they will go live with mom full time. I dread it when it is the week’s they are to come here. I’m almost in tears and having panic attacks knowing the mess I have to pick up after them; the arguments we will go through; the nasty looks and disrespectful tones. I love my husband but I just don’t know if his kids are worth my sanity. I’m so tired.

    • I have been married less than 5 years. We each have two kids and one of his youngest and one of my youngest still live with us full time. They are less than a year apart and ones a boy ones a girl. My husband and I only fight about him not treating the kids the same… His kid does nothing but stay in the bedroom on the computer all the time and my child works and is in school activities. He treats his kid with kid gloves and never sees all the things his kid does bad but thinks my kid is immature. When my husband treats them different for the same thing and I bring it up he gets mad, leaves and won’t talk to me for days…threatens he can’t deal with it. My husband says people shouldn’t fight or bring up things because it does no good. Have been to counseling but he doesn’t tell the whole truth about what goes on. I don’t know what to do?????

  5. My husband and I married 2 years ago. He has 4 children. 3 of them live with us every other week for the full week. They are ages 11,13,15 and the 2 oldest are girls which are quite a bit more complicated than the 11 yr old son. Their mother became an alcoholic after the birth of her 3 rd child, then had a couple of affairs while in rehab, one of them with a registered sex offender, whom she left my husband for and continued to date for 3 more years. My husband gave her the equity in the home, and all the contents, along with the car and pays 100% for All the kids expenses along with several hundren dollars a month, all in exchange for the restraining order to keep the pedophile away from his children. His ex did not want the divorce and have now completely alienated his children from him so they act awful when they are in our home every other week. It is so sad. He is an incredible father and husband and is generally loved by everyone he has ever met other than his ex and the children. We are on a constant roller coaster every other week. The girls are very disrespectful and downright mean to him and each other most of the time. The stress has sent my fibromyalgia thru the roof and it has altered my entire being….we are in counseling and continue to pray we will find some common ground and solutions but it has taken a pretty big toll on our relationship. He works alot of hours so I am left with the bulk of the responsibilities for his kids and the household. I am tolerated barely by the kids but now the 13yr old has started to make it clear she doesn’t want me to speak to her since I am not her mother, unless of course she needs something from me. This journey is not for the faint of heart. I am grateful I have found this site and can learn from the experiences of you all!

    • You sound like such a strong woman. I feel like such a spoilt brat after reading your account. I’ve got it very easy compared to you and I still feel resentment. You sound very level headed and I’m sure good things will come for you. Stay strong.

    • I moved from another country to be with my husband I met while traveling. His 5 year old son is spoiled rotten. Everyone feels bad that his parents are split up so he gets everything he wants. He is with us every other weekend and one weekday evening and I get full of anxiety as those times approach. He runs this household. We have to prepare meals only he will eat – anything made out of fat and salt. If you try to feed him vegetables, tantrum. The grandparents are the worst offenders. He gets anything he wants from them – including food, iPad time and toys. He basically spends all his spare time on the xbox or ipad and will throw a fit if you ask him to do anything that involves exercise. Here’s a great example of how ungrateful this child is – Halloween. Going door to door was embarrassing. He would say to the lovely people handing out candy that he doesn’t like any of it. Was upset that they weren’t giving him what he wants. I moved here because he has a kid and he couldn’t move to my country. I’m mostly upset that I moved here eyes wide shut, but it’s really difficult to not feel resentful.

  6. As a step mum of 10 years I have learned so much about myself. All of the above is overwhelmingly familiar to me. I have learned 3 values I have embraced over the years that have helped both myself and my husband.
    1. Be optimistic and positive about my ability to have power over all the situations in my life. Powerlessness breeds pessimism and a sense of failure.
    2. All decisions are made around the values my husband and I have chosen together to emulate in our home.
    So when there is an issue with one of our children it does not start with my emotional state but is this what we want for our child?and does it reflect the values we expect our children to live by whilst with us.
    3. Self care is most important in dealing with all the stresses feelings and thoughts that go with that. Self care looks different to all of us. I have alone time, good friends, and a counselor that I see when needed. I hope this is helpful to someone .

  7. I think resentment is really a powerful emotion especially among step mom’s… we resent the bio fathers favoritism of the kids, we resent the loyalty binds, we resent the ex and how she tears us down, we resent getting stuck doing things with little or no appreciation or gratefulness, we resent the step kids and the privilege’s they get yet us or our kids are left in the dust. Yet If I were to tear down their mom, I’d be looked at as wicked or mean. This is such a rotten life. I would never do it again.

    • I have two step kids. One is wonderful but the other is driving me insane. I’m tired, dressed and resentful. She is manipulating everything and everyone and I’m sick of it. He gives in to her and his ex mother and father in law and I can’t cope anymore. And I don’t know what to do. I have up my life, job and family in uk to be with him. Every morning I hear her complaing, moaning and whinning. Meal times are a absolute disaster and I’m getting so angry with the whole thing. I have tried so so hard it upsetting. She is horrible child

  8. I feel so guilty for feeling like a dark cloud is coming over my life every time my step daughter visits. Yes I use the term visit because it is as if an alien has invaded my otherwise normal life. I hate and dread the moment I am once again confronted by an unruly child that basically has no raising. I am a single parent to a 24 year old graduate student I poured my life into. I was part of huge group of friends that did not yet have children. I always raised her to be courteous, seen but not heard and welcome to come around again. It’s really the worst experience and I am willing to walk away from the best relationship of my life to not have to live this way…..

    • This feels like I might have written it myself. N’t soon is 24 and independent but I’ve recently had to take full custody, with my laundry of his 3 young children… and I’m going insane! There was no other choice but to have them- except my choices weren’t even considered.
      I Too, may lose the man of my dreams because of the resentment I feel towards 3 children that have no blame in this whatsoever-i just miss my man and the future we were going to have.

  9. Make a list of what behaviors you want your spouse to change. Be very precise. Be very clear. Put your emotions on the shelf. And then present the list and demand each one of the changes to be made. Why is there so much fear about advocating for the specific behavioral changes that you want in your household. If you want homework done then tell your spouse that homework by the child will be done. If you want respect, tben figure out how respect should be shown and provide the detailed list to your spouse. If you didn’t want a relationship with somebody who is a parent, then you should not have dated someone who is a parent. On the other hand if you wanted a relationship with a responsible parent and you believe your spouse is not being responsible, then you need to lay it out in detail. In the long run all of the kids will learn that boundaries matter. Consequences matter too. Just be as detailed and unemotional as you can when presenting your list of actions. Because although this is a relationship it’s also just business. The business of growing a family and teaching young people how to become adults.

  10. I feel resentful toward my step daughter and her husband. We are used by them and it has become clear over the years that my husband would choose his daughter over me if I voiced my true feelings. I know this is true because of arguments we have had in the past. I used to care a great deal about my step daughter but she got involved in drugs and alcohol and we offered to help her get clean. Instead of being grateful for that, she treated me poorly and her father defended her. We have never been the same since, even though she has cleaned up her act. I am treated as if I don’t exist in my own home and I am sick of the friction it has caused. I would leave but unfortunately, I am in my late 60’s now and it would be financial suicide to leave. I do not like feeling this anger and resentment and I feel trapped. It is to the point that I don’t want her in my life at all.

  11. Yes this is all to familiar feeling
    I think the resentment stems from different core values I’m a mum of two older boys who are 27 and 25 both are young successful men who get on with their lives and I se them where possible
    I’m in a situation where for four years with my new partner we’ve had to deal with a toxic ex who shall we say is very different to me complete opposites I was working full time as support worker flogging myself as well as partner working hard she didn’t work as one of her kids has special needs now this person decided to up and abandon her kids in October 2017 and now I’m primary carer as my partner was higher wage earner and this was the only choice left I gave up my jobfor 14 year old who has SEN needs and 18 year old which goes to uni and has social disorders and other things going on this . I’m left picking up the pieces of it all my partner had to literally be told to help talk to his kids as parenting doesn’t come easy to him so I’ve got that to deal with two kids angry and grieving for the loss of their mum who by the way won’t give out her new address thinks everything revolves around her and her needs she’s seen them once before Christmas ! Has phone contact till she can get her act together! I could write a book on the stunts she’s pulled and now here we are resentful having two children that aren’t mine who are very different to how I would look after my two in past .. I have to becareful how I speak to them because of their needs I want to scream at having to clean up after them and the way they go on generally I’m caught between having to be a friend a step in mum and organiser of everything whilst having to keep having a discussion with my partner that he needs to step up with his kids I think he reluctantly parents them after all the trauma of his ex living with her for 18 years he’s got depression and anxiety due to this woman! Resentment is a word that just doesn’t cover how I feel but at end of day we are in a situation where we have to get on with our new life it’s just as well we have a strong relationship but at times I often feel like walking away myself I’ve had enough of the fall out drama this ex has created towards our life !! She is now living with a man who hates her kids so she’s dumped them to live with him but lied to the youngest about where she lives that she is at a secret address and when she feels better they can visit! 18 year old has cottoned on to the fantasy lie and at present wants nothing to do with her mum ! They only got to meet her near Christmas because me and my partner had contacted ex’s parents for the kids to visit! They took present for their grandparents ! And card all sorted by me I might add and the grandparents didn’t even want their own daughter (his ex) anywhere near their house case she caused trouble ! It’s not a good sign is it ? Anyways they got a few presents from their mum but nothing big the kids must of felt very hurt by this situation and by the constant hurt their mother and her tactics in the last year of pushing them away from her and putting a man above their needs then still being with this man and they are with us ! They don’t want to go back they are happy with us ! To stop resentment you need time for yourself as the nonbio parent boundaries and communication and house rules for new family ! And if you feel resentment rearing you have to talk about how you are feeling with your partner even if it cause upset your feelings have to be validated about what’s going on and what is not working for you !

  12. I feel trapped. I have no bio kids. Never wanted them. We can’t do anything for long periods or make a plan because of visitation. I used to take off whenever I wanted. I don’t care if people say I’m selfish. That’s why I didn’t want kids. When I married my husband it was under the premise we’d stay in the location where we met and got married. Then we moved to a horrible state to be near his kids, two of them only call when they need something. I get it. I married a guy with kids, but it isn’t what I signed up for. I miss my freedom. I feel so alone and like I can’t breathe. I hate this.

    • That’s exactly how I feel. I never wanted kids. My husband has 2 kids with 2 different women. The son lives with his mom and we have him every other week. The daughter is now with us full time. The mother had drug issues. I resent her and mother very much but trying to go with it. The daughter didn’t ask for this. My husband works full time and I work part time. I’m exhausted and life has taken a complete turn. I hate feeling this way.

      • That’s my exsact story to!!! Weird. Had her almost 2 years. I feel like our husbands were lost then found by us and then all the kids come back home! Such bullshit! She’s 171/2 had her troubled ass since 15. She did ask to come live with us. I wish so bad I could have just said no! But her mom was going to jail and homeless. I resent the mom so mcuh. – she actually has the nerve to ask money still …….. god help us step moms! We are the saviors of these lost children. But man is it hard. Resent a lot! And one day they will see what we do!!!

  13. I feel somehow reassured that I’m not the only one who feels this way. My stepson will be 19 in 2 months and has, so far, achieved nothing in his life. He came to live with me and my partner when he was 16 and I bent over backwards to transfer him from the college he was in whilst living with his mother, to a local college near us. I work at said college, so through my sheer determination and good relations with colleagues, I managed to drag him through his course.
    He then proceeded to do nothing. My partner seemed quite happy to let him do nothing. I told my partner that if this was the way things were going to be, that I was only prepared to pay one third of the bills and that he would have to make up the short fall from his son. This spurred my partner on to talk to his son about responsibilities and so on. My stepson’s reaction to this was to move back in his mother. I was so happy he was leaving.
    Unfortunately, it didn’t last long before he was on the phone to his dad wanting to move back in, which he did.
    This pattern has repeated itself 3 times in 3 years.
    Last April, my partner and I got pregnant. I was so looking forward to having my own child to focus on. Devastatingly, I lost my baby boy. He was stillborn at 38 weeks.
    My stepson is still living with us and does less than nothing. He doesn’t work, he doesn’t help out round the house and most days, he doesn’t get out of bed till my partner gets home from work at 4.30pm. My partner doesn’t care!
    I resent my stepson so much. He is living in my house; spending his days tucked up and warm in his bed with all his tech gadgets to keep him company; eating my food and leaving his dirty washing in my basket whilst my precious little boy is lying at the bottom of a freezing cold grave in the church up the road. It’s so unfair!
    I have asked my partner a thousand times to make his son sort himself out. I have pointed out that by not guiding his son into becoming a responsible adult, he is doing him more harm than good. I have explained to my partner exactly how I feel and yet, the situation persists. The problem is that my partner and I have very different ideas about parenting; he treats his son like his best mate but in doing so, he does not lead by example; he does not set good standards for his son to follow and his son just copies his dad’s bad habits and vices, believing them to be OK. I even think that they have a good laugh at my expense behind my back sometimes. I teach 16 to 19 year olds in college and sometimes have 30 to deal with at the same time. I love my job! I know a thing or two about what makes teenagers tick and I almost always manage to help them to make progress. In the classroom what I say goes, I’m in charge, if I wasn’t in control, I would have a riot on my hands. Unfortunately, this is not the case at home. I’m outnumbered by 2 men and I often feel uncomfortable in my own home.
    Enough is enough, I am now left with one last option, the one I really hoped I would not have to use. I love my partner dearly and would love to try for another baby with him but I just can’t deal with his stepson anymore. I am going to ask him to take his son away from me. I’m not going to ask him to choose because I fully understand that he will not pick me and I would never expect him to, but I need his son out of my life! He hurts my already broken head far too much.
    I have lost my own child and I’m going to end up losing the love of my life as well but I resent my stepson so much, it’s a price I’m prepared to pay. Plus, as my partner is still content in letting his son abuse my good nature and my bank account, it’s becoming very clear that he really can’t care about my feelings or care about how fragile I am due to the death of our baby, that I’m beginning to resent him too.
    All this negative feeling is so unhealthy and it’s preventing me from grieving for my baby boy, let alone trying to heal from my loss and get my life back on track.
    I will never, ever get into a relationship with a man who has kids again. At 42 years old and never married, it’s also looking like I’ll never have any kids of my own either. Oh well, I’ll just devote all of my love and attention to my 2 beautiful dogs instead!

    • Please don’t give up hope. I got married at 40, way older than I’d imagined. I got pregnant for the first time and gave birth at 41. You will have your baby. Stop resenting that odious stepson, I know he’s annoying but the resentment will make it hard to conceive. Forget him, ignore him, so you can focus on loving your future baby. It will be a girl. Good luck and God bless.

  14. Wow, so glad it isn’t just me! We are unmarried but blended families recently, getting one big house together to share living expenses and spend more time together during the weeks we have our kids home. He has 4 (3 living at home) and I have three (2 living at home). I knew we had different approaches to parenting before we moved in together, but now we live together I see his parenting style is more lazy than laissez faire! His kids spend every waking hour video gaming; if we go out to dinner, they are glued to their phones. There is no structure, no routine whatsoever – even on school nights they are in their rooms gaming while their father is watching TV on the couch or asleep in bed. The middle son is failing high school, no doubt in part due to lack of sleep! He has been caught drinking alcohol and smoking weed at age 15 along with other anti-social behaviors I won’t divulge here.

    The 18 year old doesn’t drive yet because neither parent has bothered to take the time to teach him, but I guess it’s OK because he never leaves his room anyway, just games all day and all night. Why bother learning to drive?

    I work full time and have two of my own children at home. I have a very structured routine with them – school, homework, downtime, dinner, bed at a reasonable time, etc, but his kids have no such structure. They are basically raising themselves and it is literally sink or swim for them.

    We have all 5 children at home every other week, but I’m ready to stagger the custody schedule so I can provide my biological children with the routine and structure they had before we all moved in together. Life is very busy and chaotic with 5 teenagers in the house and my relationship with my own children has suffered – I no longer have the quality downtime I had with them before this move because it’s like the circus has come to town. Meal times are like feeding time at the zoo, very stressful for me because my lazy boyfriend doesn’t have the capacity to help out without specific instructions from me. While I blame his mother and ex-wife for enabling him to be helpless and hopeless, it is to the detriment of our relationship – I have zero plans to marry him unless he ups his game.

    My boyfriend is very disconnected from his kids and does the bare minimum for them – he does not prepare meals, clean up after them, make sure homework is done, rooms are tidy, laundry done, etc, etc. If I work late, I will go home to find them all “starving” because my boyfriend – who has been home for hours – is too lazy to cook. He plays the “I don’t know how” game, but how hard is it to put fish-sticks in the oven?

    I resent the expectation that I should go to work all day and then come home to cook for everyone (he denies he expects this but actions speak louder than words). His kids don’t eat what I cook for them anyway, they pick over it and most gets thrown in the trash. I’m ready to quit as the chef. However, my kids are there and I want to continue to be a good mother to them and cook dinner rather than feed them junk food which is my boyfriend’s alternative. He lived on frozen meals before we moved in together, and so did his kids.

    My boyfriend and his ex-wife are as bad as each other, they will feed the kids pizza for breakfast, lunch and dinner because it’s easy and doesn’t interfere with their TV time. I don’t want that life for my kids, nor do I plan on being the house slave to him and his kids. It’s a crappy position to be in.

    His parenting skills (or lack of them) make me disrespect him in ways he probably couldn’t begin to understand. I get it – this is his family dynamic, they are not involved parents, probably never have been, and they are content to not prepare their kids for adulthood. If they are OK with their kids failing out of school and living at home until they’re 30 that’s up to them, but I won’t be a part of that.

    I don’t dislike his kids as I understand they are the product of their parents, however it is very hard to bond with video gaming zombies who have no other interests outside of gaming. They are all teenagers so there is no way I can change their attitude or try to shape them into more interesting and engaging adults. That is not a battle I’m prepared to take on. They don’t speak to me unless I speak to them first anyway, they are not particularly likable, they have no manners and are basically like ghosts in the house, you spot them from time to time when they leave their darkened bedrooms to forage for food in the kitchen.

    My hope is I can stagger custody so my kids are home one week, his kids the following week. That way, I can take care of my kids the same way I did before we blended families – cooking dinners that will be eaten and not picked over and thrown in the garbage. The weeks his kids are home (and my kids are at their father’s house), I will show my boyfriend how to put a pizza in the oven before retreating to my den for the evening. I doubt they’ll even notice – they have extremely low expectations because this is how they’ve been raised.

    I should have known better. This is the guy who had 4 kids and never changed a diaper. It speaks volumes about him as a father, but amazes me that his ex-wife had 4 kids with this him? I guess she had the lowest expectations of all!! Too bad it changes the way I look at him – I personally don’t understand why he bothered getting 50/50 custody, these kids are borderline neglected.

    Sorry for the long vent 🙂

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  16. I feel so much resentment. I don’t have the horror stories about major drug abuse or physical abuse but against my better judgement I continued a relationship with a man that parenting issues. I have three children of my own and two are in college now. We have his daughter every other weekend and one night a week for dinner. I dread the visits. Even though she has her own room they are visits. She doesn’t keep things at our home and takes everything home to her mom’s. Her mother has been a nightmare to me. Even though she cheated in her marriage and replaced my husband before I even went out with him the first time I feel like the other woman. I am treated by her like I broke up the marriage. She says I’m not family and bad mouths me to him and his daughter. I dealt with this before he marriage so I don’t know why it suprises me that it continues still. I cannot go to any activities his now teenage daughter does for fear the mother will verbally assault me. I actually had to call the police on her for it in the past and it is always on my mind if he asks me to go to something. His daughter also completely ignores me if we do go. She will hug her “daddy” even at 15 now but can’t muster up a hello for me standing there. I feel my kids are slighted because I make them work for everything and she has everything handed to them. Even though my ex makes more that 2X what my husband earns and pays more in support I don’t spoil her. My daughter says I act different to his child when she’s there like I’m kissing her butt so I try to just do nothing now. I’m so tired of it. I’ve started an antidepressant recently because this all gets me so anxious and so down. I’ve been on a downward spiral and not I’m miserable. I am done trying to talk it through with him because it ends in a fight. I’m hurt and emotional now. I guess that’s why I’m searching on-line for someone to talk to.

  17. Being a step-mom is a nightmare. There have been improvements from my husband and the child, but I am so filled with anger and resentment that it is hard to move forward. It is also hard to let go because some of the conduct continues. He blames me if she acts badly or says its her mother’s fault. He does not make the child take any responsibility for her actions. She lies constantly. I feel miserable. I hate when she comes to visit. I have been trying to be kind to her, but it goes nowhere because she has such an attitude. I need love and support from my husband, who is just angry with me constantly for not wanting his kid around. I’m having trouble forgiving him for the past hurts he has put me through and for the issues with his daughter that he did not and at times still does not handle properly. I have two amazing infants and they deserve a family unit. I don’t want to break up my home, but I don’t want to continue to not feel loved and be angry.

    • Sadmama, I am in a very similar situation minus being on antidepressants but I can totally understand the need for them!
      My husband’s daughter comes for 2 months in the summer and I begin feeling anxious about the visit about 1 month prior to its start. She lies and manipulates situations constantly so that it looks like my kids and myself are somehow the Ganging up on her. If she doesn’t get her way or gets in trouble for something she sudddenly has a medical illness (nausea, stomach ache, chest pain) which reflects the issue. I have told my husband that the standard for my kids is never upheld for his child, that she lies and manipulated but he struggles to see if.
      I do not make my husband “primary parent” my kids as they are my responsibility yet he tries to make me act as a primary parent for his except when it comes to holding her to a standard or addressing lies etc; so basically, I can cook, clean, drive her around, and do the difficult things of parenting but have zero Say in anything else. My resentment for her is so enormous that I can’t even make eye contact with her most days. I ve prayed and read articles on how to resolve it but I can’t seem to find the answer.

      • LostTx, I don’t know the answers, but I do understand the resentment. Sunday I heard a sermon while on vacation. The sermon was about sheep and lice. As the story was told when sheep get lice they need to go through a dipping process (of course they trust their shepherd). The sheep do not know why the person they trust allows the dipping, but the shepherd does and knows the dip will help the entire flock.
        I had a breakdown with my step-daughters on this trip. I confronted them with my love/hate relationship toward them and my resentment. Their father went his natural route and denied and gave excuses. None of this is helping me and after 13 years I too was wondering if I needed to leave, but the sermon kept coming to me. The sheep don’t know they have lice.
        My outburst seemed to work. I think everyone understands that I’ve had children for over 37 years and it’s time to expect so much from me. I’m falling apart. My days’ are exceedingly difficult. I drive 15 to 18 hrs a week for a 40 hour job. Life is quite obviously getting tougher not easier (the lice outbreak is not only regular, but continual!)
        This site was helpful to read and realize that I’m not alone. That support is necessary and that boundaries are necessary. I think if Jesus was to ask me a question – he would ask me “Do you want to get well?” My answer would be yes – but it’s going to hurt before it get’s better and that is where the fear becomes great (and the doubt). It will be a daily process with slow results, but we are not alone . People obviously do understand.

  18. My boyfriend is the greatest. His 14 1/2 year old daughter not so much. She’s fat, lazy, dumb, selfish, rude, unmotivated and she smells. Everytime I go left, you can bet she’s going to go right. I go right and she goes left. I’m not sure if it’s on purpose or if anybody is really that out of time with everything. Can’t even reach the little idiot either all she does is lay on the couch (so fat and lazy she can’t ever even sit up), she would eat the walls off the house if she could, she actually aye every last bit of my 8 year olds Halloween candy, she asks to clean other people’s plates at dinner when they are done. We’ve been together a little over a year, everything was great until about 9 Months into the relationship when decided to ruin things in her moms house, can’t get along with stepdad because he asked her to help out with her 2 younger sisters. I don’t think this idiot could cut it anywhere in life. She decided them that she needed to move back here with my boyfriend. He took her to burger king got dinner, bought 2 sandwiches and 2 large French fries, fat ass thought all the food was for her, he didn’t get any. I think she only moved back here and actually said so because she thought “it would be easier” i.e. wouldn’t have to do anything. She stinks and I saw her eating the dirt from under her toenails, she doesn’t wash her hands and doesn’t like hand sanitizer. She “doesn’t like books”, I think my 8 year old reads better than her. Can’t even tell time on a Roman numeral clock when my 8 year old can. This drooly mouthed phone zombie (stays on the phone watching idiot YouTube 24/7) is my meal ticket going out the door, thought I finally really found something but can’t have anything again, we have to keep 2 separate houses because I won’t live with her, idiot can’t even follow directions, took a million times of saying it before the dumbass could even comprehend to not use my bath towel, hairbrush or razor, get your own and hang up the fn wet towel when she is done. We’ve decided to wait until she is 18 but I don’t see this idiot doing anything for herself, she’s very incompetent, can’t even make her own appointment for a haircut, when we all know the dummy knows how to use the phone. I don’t see how she’s going to turn into an adult in 3 1/2 years at this rate.

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    • Run RUN Run!!!! If you are only dating ———
      If i knew what I signed up for being a step mom to a 15 yr old lying troubled girl we got FULL TIME .who’s own mom can’t take care of her because she chooses alcohol and men – I’m always Making sure this household is ran perfectly week after week and going to her school meetings ,doctors for birth control ,dmv, driver training in my car ,buying her clothes ,with my hard earned money while we still pay the mom a small fee due to men not doing the proper paperwork. But besides all this. I fuking hate it soooo much and resent her everyday! I don’t even like her personality and we clash ! She’s annoying as fuck to! Talks out of her ass like she so cool but yet has zero friends and is a stage 10 clinger to her poor bf- She does what i day because I demand respect but I can’t help after 2. Years I STILL feel the same. Does this ever go away? I picture having greens kids and she’s my husbands blood but having my own place again and the freedom I’d feel would be soooo up lifting but god I love my husband. She’s 18 in dec. and getting As in school and also we made her work to! But now summer is coming I absolutely dread her being in MY home I built! She doesn’t deserve my home ! She prob does but I’m so over this day to day feeling I live with. I’ve lost my sense of self and happiness and my poor husband has no idea what to do either – I do be honest to him but anyway. Please advise to the new girl who hasn’t married yet!!!!! RUN RUN RUN!! STEP KIDS SUCK ASS

  20. I feel like a terrible person for hating my stepdaughter (5). Her mom died last year and she lives with us and our son (1.5years). I have no fault to find in her as a child, but she looks like her mother and her presence reminds me that my boyfriend did this with someone else (they were together for 13 years, but split before I met him). I resent that I have to mind her, do school runs, have given up my career to mind the kids for financial reasons, and that she steals every free minute of my boyfriend’s time. So that I have to do literally everything for our son. I never get a break. I wish she did not exist – without her, our family would be my dream family.

    She is jealous of me, always coming in on top of any physical contact I have with her dad. If we hug she runs over and hugs him too. I’m 32 and I just seems awful that we can’t express ourselves without her being there. I resent her very presence. Most of the time I put her watching a movie when I mind her so I don’t have to be around her. That said it looks to her dad that I appreciate her for who she is etc etc.

    I thought I was a good person, but her presence is sometimes unmanageable for me. I feel my blood boil. I adore my boyfriend and our son but am often tempted to leave (even though it would cause a financial disaster for both of us), just so I wouldn’t have to see her anymore.

    Is this going to get worse or better? She’s only 5.

  21. My husband has such a wonderful heart, is caring, will do anything for the ones his loved ones. When we met, he was working hard to bring his three children (now 17g, 15b, 8b) to Canada for a better life and better opportunities. Coming from a 3rd world country, they do not have the same opportunities that we are fortunate to have and take for granted. We married before I met his children, as he was unable to travel out of the country (immigration paperwork) so he could introduce me, but I texted and video called regularly with the 2 older kids. Before they came to Canada, I decided I would visit them by myself to remove any mystery of meeting me in person, as well as their mother and be in good terms with her – since I will be with her children every day, raising them. The kids are now here and it’s been 5 months. Everyday I approach as a new learning opportunity since we are still learning about each other, and the kids are learning how to live in Canada, new school system, Speaking English etc. It’s a lot for them to adjust. There have been only a few hiccups, as to be expected. My husband travels for work, and is only home on the weekend for 1-2 days. So it is basically me doing everything. I have no children of my own. So I jumped in head first into the unknown of parenthood. I am now struggling with not losing it on the kids and my husband, as well as at work, since I work full time in a high stress job – any time something is not going right. I knew going in that I would be the primary caregiver. But was told that the kids are self sufficient. However, my husband has realized they aren’t and require more guidance. I have a step mother myself, and that hasn’t been the best relationship. But I took those learnings and I am hypersensitive to the kids feelings and how I approach- but it’s exhausting and stressful. There is now “how to” guide for my interesting scenario. I am feeling resentful at myself for letting things get to me. I don’t like myself this way, I am basically crying everyday because it’s just so overwhelming. I don’t know what to do anymore. How do I tell my husband I need more support, without hurting his feelings or jeopardizing our relationship?

  22. My husband is the only man I’ll ever really love enough to be married to. If we split up, I’d be perfectly happy alone. Perhaps even happier. He has 3 kids to 3 different women. I want him but not his baggage. I want freedom but I feel so stuck. His 11 year old is living with us fulltime now. They are generally very good kids but I get seriously moody and negative as soon as they come around and I take it out on him and occasionally on my Mum too. I hate it and it eats me up. He hates it coz he’s a positive person and he will never really understand how hard I find it and how much I struggle with it. He doesn’t deserve it. He should have been with someone that loves kids and I should have been with someone that doesnt have any kids or simply with no one at all. I dont hate kids, I’d just prefer not to be around them or to only be around them in very small bites like my nephews, where I can leave the craziness at my leisure. I’m just happier alone and can never have too much space or freedom. My husband works very hard so the least I can do is cook and clean but I absolutely HATE it. ESPECIALLY having to think of what to cook each night and rushing home from work to make sure his son gets fed at a reasonable hour. I despise it. I want to cook what I want when I want which includes sometimes nothing at all. If I want a bag of popcorn for dinner I just want to be able to bloody do that! I miss only being responsible for myself. I also love a clean house (some would say I’m a little bit OCD about it ) but I want it to stay that way, not for all my hard work to be undone! If I lived by myself, everything would always be tidy and clean and in its rightful place. Nothing is more important to me than solitude, independence, peace and quiet and a tidy house. It seriously brings me more joy than anything else. He is the right guy with the wrong baggage and if anything would be the end of us it would be the responsibilities and difficulties that kids bring to our life. I thought I would probably have kids of my own but now it all seems way too hard. I think I’d have a mental breakdown. I just wanna do what I wanna do when I wanna do it. I’m completely selfish and I know it but I just wasnt cut out for this and I’m quite confident my feelings about it will never change or get easier. Perhaps it will just get worse and worse with time. My husbands love for me is truly unconditional and he would do anything for me, but you can’t change the past can you. This is a hard life I have chosen for myself and I’m just not sure what to do about it.

    • I should also add, his children pick up on my moods regularly as well and I am ashamed of myself for this. It is truly awful and breaks my heart and I constantly think that they’d be better off without me around. My husband has to lie and say I had a bad day at work. His son even asked recently if I hate his half sister (my husbands daughter). He’s often said to me that I hate his kids. I don’t hate his kids but if they weren’t in my life I wouldn’t miss them. I am not good for them. I am not a good stepmother.

    • I seriously can relate!!! The single life was not so bad but I sooo love my guy to! And I married him last sept- and his 15 yr old who never knew came to love with us full time and I’m miserable! I hate her and resent anything I do for her and although she not as bad as could be. I still feel like the air has lifted when she is gone! Summer will be here and I’m dreading every second she is home ———— god help us!!!!

  23. I feel the same as many of you. I don’t have kids and I feel like my fiancé will never understand. We went from having his sd 5 from no relationship at all, like she didn’t even know he was her father to 50/50 in less then one year. He works a lot, sometimes 7 days a week and for the time that he gets her I just feel like a damn babysitter. I watch her for up to fourteen hours a day when he is at work and then he comes home gives her all the attention and passes out. Plus I don’t agree with his style of parenting or the biomoms parenting style. This little girl is only 5 and basically does whatever she wants. It’s ridiculous. She runs both of our houses. If something comes up and I say no he will always say yes to her and if he’s not here and I say no she says well my mom says I can so. Then I get the blame for being in a pissy ass mood all the time. I wonder why. I’ve never had kids, never been a parent and it’s not like this shit comes with a handbook. Plus this was just pushed on me like the parents literally just decided to split time without asking me, or he will just decide to work more and tell me I’m babysitting. I don’t think a 5 year old should be able to do whatever they want that’s setting them up for failure later in life because sooner or later those no answers will come up and you won’t be able to be a spoiled fkn brat and get your way all the time. Maybe it’s due to my childhood being shit. I really don’t know. I feel terrible for even feeling this way but I just don’t think I’m cut out for this. I’ve tried so many times to talk to him about it but I just can’t. I’ll never be able to let him know how I truly feel because the minute I get close he loses his temper and just wants to take her home and not have her come over at all. I can’t win in this situation and it’s so unfair. I didn’t even know what I signed up for since it wasn’t like this in the beginning. Her bio mom drives me insane too. She talks to him way too much and he always sticks up for her saying it’s about their kid but I’ve seen what she’s said before and it was not about the kid and definitely not appropriate. The kid adores me and I feel so guilty. I’m anxious for a couple days before we pick her up and then have a dark cloud over my head for the whole visit. I don’t take it out on her which I’m very thankful for but I do take it out on my fiancé and he doesn’t deserve that. He really doesn’t but how can you see me so miserable and not even attempt to acknowledge it or fix the problem. What is the point in having 50/50 when you’re at work 85% of that time. We’ve been arguing nearly everyday and I’m definitely not getting attached to someone’s kid when we can just decide one day this isn’t working and I’ll never see her again. I don’t even think I can have children at this point so there’s resentment there too. I’m just lost and I have no idea how to fix this. I’m on depression meds already and they don’t seem to be working. I feel like I’m losing my mind.

    • Run!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! You will be making a huge mistake This step kid life sucks!!!! So not worth the trouble. But the grandkids are what I think of. To keep me sane! She’s 171/2 and 27 hours and 1 minute and 28 seconds old. LOL

  24. All I can say is, if you have no kids/baggage of your own- DON’T do this.
    I’ve been a step daughter and now a step mother. No comparison in the level of hardship. Unless there’s abuse or actual neglect- stepkids have little to complain about. Most are in fact, spoiled, and OVER compensated for.
    Prepare to loose all control of your life as an adult, with no exit, no voice, and no priority. I am an extremely patient and kind person generally, but this role is what I image happens when you’re sent to hell.
    As the everso important stars of the show(kids) visit, try to love them like “your own” as they steal your belongings, get jealous of small displays of affection with your spouse, whisper to their dad not to have a baby with you, give you snarls when your back is turned, and talk about/to their mother non stop on FaceTime in your home. Yes the mother pretty much lives in our home p/t on FaceTime. Most lucky ladies don’t ever have to meet the ex let alone live with her daily reminder sans stepfamily so remember that. Just say no to stepmother-hood. Free yourself. I get so jealous of seeing happy couples with their infants and I want to tell them to stay together and not fight over petty trivial life things since they have no idea how bullshit their lives will be if they split and go blended.
    Step parenting is hell

  25. Think of it this way…
    Being a stepchild is only temporary. One day you get to move up and out and create your own family. Being a stepmom is permanent and requires your life to run your life around visitation and tolerating disrespectful and cliqey behaviour in your own home probably forever… stepdaughter? Enjoy feeling like your in high school all over again… feel like your the geek constantly getting mowed over by the popular b*tch at school. Yes THIS is exactly what it feels like! Do. Not. Settle. For. This.
    You want to bond properly with your man and raise your kids the way you choose. This role is for nobody, nobody is equipped for this, honestly it’s completely unnatural…

  26. Imagine sitting on the couch next to your husband after a long day and every single time his kids lay on top of him or in between. Not because they simply want to be in the middle. No. It’s because they don’t like to see the 2 of you touching… let that sink in.
    This act of a jealous child will be completely unnoticed by him(he may even think it’s cute). It will happen at dinners(even with company over), when you hug, kiss, and sleep. The jealous stepchild will try to insert themselves in any way possible to separate the two of you physically.
    You say- we’ll i will just love them like my own, buy them gifts, bake cookies, be kind. Lol. Tried that. Loyalty runs deep. Their loyalty is to their mother and father. Not you. No matter how hard you try.
    Run fast. No matter your age. There are childfree men out there that want to make you their queen and create your lives together.

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