I Have to Deal with a Stepmom Who Oversteps Her Boundaries ?

Updated on August 02, 2012
C.E. asks from Lexington, KY
12 answers

my ex is remaried to a girl who thinks she is my girls mom ? she tells the girls friends parents she is the mom, she always tries to do things i shoud do . haircuts ,doctors, school stuff .my ex and her try to keep me as an outsider . she tells my kids they cant were stuff. i buy them from my house .she acts like shes such a great mom she has children of her own that she only sees twice a month ?why do they do this ?

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answers from Norfolk on

I too had/have this issue. It started very early on, and continued. It is an issue of trying to show your ex that she is a better mom, wife etc. That she can handle it. Take control now. I had this issue all the way until my daughter passed away in a car accident. She portrayed herself as "mom" at the funeral and even went as far as having my daughter buried in her family's plots. I was told the plot was a gift to us. Us being he and his wife. How sad that someone tries soo hard to takeover. Whatever you allow, will later multiply. I let it go for the sake of peace.



answers from Memphis on

Well, my first thought is that she is doing this to impress your ex-husband... Perhaps because she has such limited custody of her own children, she wants him to think she is a good mom... it's hard to say what motivates people. What's most important is that you maintain a good relationship with your children and reassure them that you ARE their Mom, but be polite about the other woman. I bet it will blow over when she feels she has done enough to impress people. If she has such limited custody I would be willing to bet it means she really wasn't such a good mom -- courts don't usually do that... especially since she has remarried and could provide a home with both "parents"... Be patient and calm and be THERE for your children. They'll see the truth and that's what matters.
Take care!


answers from Raleigh on

I appreciate you're having a really hard time with this, which is completely understandable, and that you may not like my opinion because I am a stepmom. I would suggest putting it in writing, and talking to your ex about it, are these things you feel he should be doing? Are you offering to take them to these events and are not being allowed? Have you and your ex set any boundries previously about what if either of you remarry how you'd like it handled. I am a large part of my stepson's life, I take him to haircuts, doctors appointments, am involved in his school events; but then main difference probably is that everyone I encounter knows that I am not his mom and frequently his mom is at these introductions as well. It may not be easy, but talk to your ex and his new wife, don't involve the kids, and remember that at your ex's house, it's also her house and you don't have control over that, you may want to but discussing your wishes are the only way to handle it. Like I said you may not like my opinion, but my stepson's mom and I do our best for my stepson and reaching a point where I can also be involved without crying, yelling or any other outburst is a great step. I have to say at her house I would let the cloths thing slide, and if she doesn't want them let her buy replacements, it's not your job to bend to her wishes. And please don't lump all of us stepparents into the grouping of them, we're not all evil.



answers from Memphis on

Personality problems? Ignorance? I really can't understand where women are coming from sometimes. It boggles my mind that women can't seem to ever support one another. You probably won't like my answer to you.
I won't claim to understand all the dynamics of your situation. But what I will try to help you understand is this: It sounds like you wouldn't like the situation no matter what. If she does to much, she oversteps boundaries. But if she did nothing, you would complain that she doesn't treat your daughter right. Sometimes step-moms can't win. Sometimes real moms can't win. A lot of times, dad's can't win.
I wish you would consider embracing the reality that there is yet someone else that is feeding positive energy and love into your daughter. Even if just for a season, how could that harm her? Trust me when I say that you don't know the future. They may stay married forever. If they do, and you are still filled with anxiety over this when your daughter is an adult, it will be you that your daughter sees as negative. She will eventually realize for herself, if this new step-mom is genuine or has ulterior motives. Only time will tell. But for right now, if you want to be a good mom, you will embrace someone else being good to your daughter. The ramifications of being bitter, resentful and jealous will far out way the ramifications of your daughter building a relationship with another adult she will be able to confide in when she goes through the confusing years of being a teenager. And remember, you are teaching your daughter every single day of her life, how to be a grown up. How to be a woman. How to view men. And how to me a mom to her own children.



answers from Nashville on

Who has the most custody? I would never stand for that! If you have primary custody I would tell your ex that he better get his 'wifey' under control or you will take him back to court! She has no right to tell your children anything like that against you. When they are with them in their home, they can tell them what to wear but other than that, she needs to take care of her own kids....that she doesn't even have custody of! UGH



answers from Louisville on

I'm guessing she has personality problems. Watch for this type of behavior to stop after she gets bored with it. Also, she might totally reverse coarse and start treating them poorly after a while. Take notes, talk with your ex to set clear boundaries, and coach your daughter as best you can without bad talking her step-mother to her face.



answers from Nashville on

perhaps, IGNORANCE??? Many step-moms do that! They either want to try to be better, or they are trying to impress the husband, or the want "to be liked best". Pity her, and keep the good relationship with your daughter and keep the communication open. You are Mom, and no one can change that! God Bless.



answers from Chattanooga on

it just because she is married to your ex- she is jealous of the way the daughter is in the house hold she tell people lie that it was her's she sure have say step daughter instead of my daughter . It is part of the married life that she deal with . It was your ex that want to make her their daughter ,people will say this thing because they don't want to mention you are the mother of that child you raise and where the she came from. your ex- and his wife went too far mention it was their daughter , when your daughter grow up she will know what going on in the family. Well like you said she does all this thing it is probably she want to win your daughter over .But your daughter is your daughter no matter what . You will have to deal with her when she grow up and she will love both you and the ex and her stepmother. Just give your daughter all the love you can and make her feel more at home with you . you can tell the stepmother to stop doing thing for your daughter and that it was your plan to do it not her.



answers from Goldsboro on

My question to you is, Who has custody of your daughter? I am also a step-mother to a now 20 year old who got married in May. As she was growing up she lived with her mom and came to visit her dad and I when SHE wanted to. In her mom's custody her mom and step-dad played the roles of mom and dad. She moved in with us before turning 16 and then her dad and I played those roles. I always made sure she kept a good relationship with her mom, but I did those things that was needed of me while she lived with me. I refer to her as my daughter just like I do my own biological children. At her wedding we all (her mom, dad, step-dad and me) had a part in giving her away. We were all acknowledged as being her parents. She wanted her dad to walk her down the aisle but her step-dad did the first dance.
It is a tough job being a step parent and this lady may just be trying to make and keep a good relationship with your daughter (her step-daughter). But I would suggest that if in fact you have custody and you want to do these things that she is doing then you should talk to your ex, her and maybe even your daughter (depending how old she is). Be there for your daughter and she will appreciate ALL of her family being there for her and supporting her. I am not saying that you have to be friends with this lady (me and my husbands ex have only seen each other a few times) but don't bad mouth her around your daughter either because she will remember that.
Good Luck!! and god Bless!!



answers from Nashville on

I just sent you a letter involving your son! Lol. Honey, the best thing to do is put her in her place. Just to the point tell her to leave your children alone and tend to her own. Just because she can't see hers (for who knows why??)she needs to back off. In this family, these are your children. If it continues call the police and press charges of her interfering in your home and in your children's lives. Find out why she only sees hers so in frequently! Use it against her. Fight for what is yours!



answers from Jacksonville on

First of all, your feelings are valid and natural. What you have to ask yourself is what is your first priority? What is most important to you? Of all the complaints you could have about your kids' stepmother, at least it's that she is "mothering" them too much, instead of not enough. It's far better for your children that you all deal with this particular annoyance rather than an issue of neglect and refusal to parent on the stepmother's part. As obnoxious and frustrating as is surely must be, try to keep a grateful attitude that at least your children are being cared for "too much" instead of being ignored or terribly mistreated. If you do your best to keep a level head and not let things get ugly (especially in front of your kids), the children will be much better off. Try to resist the impulse to give this woman a piece of your mind, because only more negativity will come from it on both sides and your kids will pay the price. See what you can do to approach the stepmom from a position (even if you're faking it) of, "I know we both just want what's best for the kids and they really respond well to the doctor I take them to, so could I come by and pick up Sarah for an appointment on Tuesday? I really appreciate you keeping up with these important issues." (etc.) You'll have a lot more power if you use a positive "teamwork" approach to influence her behavior. You'll have to grit your teeth and bite your tongue sometimes, but if you're ultimate goal is to manipulate the woman into behaving more like you'd like her to, this is the best way to get there. And of course, your kids are the most important thing here, so don't let that get run over by annoyance and parenting politics (which is easy for anyone to do). Best of luck!



answers from Portland on

Its funny after reading all the responses saying its the stepmom's fault and that she's crazy, no one is sticking up for her?! Has anyone thought about WHY she's stepping in to do these things...maybe she waited and waited and waited for you to get the job done, and when their school needed immunizations or when the girls hair was too tangly to brush through that's when she stepped in to help. And be there for the kids. Its funny - I think the mom SHOULD be doing all these things, so what's wrong with you? I bet you think its ok for you kids to ride around without helmets on your property, too...its safe right, just cause "there's nothing around to hurt them"? Oh wait the CONCRETE!

Well maybe that was a low blow, I'm sure you aren't as big an idiot as the mom I'm dealing with (as a stepmom). I'm sure you don't send your kids to their dads with smelly breath, and waxy ears, and poop-stains in their pants... oh and not to mention the hundreds of flea bites all over, or the mildewed stained clothes.

I'm just saying - maybe that stepmom saw an obvious lacking in care for the kids... there's always two sides.

Oh and ps - my kids asked to call me mom, and for me to call them my own...think about that??

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