May 19, 2019, 02:35:30 pm


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Adult Stepsons and Adult Stepdaughters

Started by SouthernBelle, May 26, 2009, 10:47:41 am

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Hi Everyone: What a cool forum! It looks pretty new and I am, too. There is no category for what I need to talk about, which are adult stepchildren.

I just want to post here how hard it was for me when I got married a second time into an established family that was very different from my family of origin or my first in laws, (whom I had know since early childhood.) I thought I was more than ready to work through anything and everything because I was so entranced with my "to-be."

Sound familiar? Well, my stepchildren were suspicious of my motives. His son immediately tried to find out something unsavory about me from the local rumor mill (he failed) and his daughter made it clear that she thought her dad was being hit on by someone who was after his money (not easy to do when he didn't have very much.)   

Fast- forward fifteen years. I am treated with kindness and respect. They appreciate that I am doing a great job in keeping their dad healthy and making him happy. I also feel very warmly toward them. We are still just as different...(let me count the ways)...but they do their thing and I do mine and it's OK...finally.

My question is, why couldn't I have been given the benefit of the doubt? Why assume that I married for money? Why is it so inconceivable that I found their dad immensely attractive and that the 20-year age difference was of no concern to either of us? We both felt their stinging rejection so strongly. It's still hard to forget.

I have never seen the need for their behavior. I know it was based on concern for my husband's welfare but he is very cogent and bright; totally capable of making up his own mind and following though without the need to ask anyone's permission. I still see their solicitous disregard (there's an oxymoron) as not only unnecessary but insulting to the man who loves them, dearly.

I want to finish this post by commending my husband for his quiet and unspoken, yet none-the-less fierce loyalty to me. Before we married, we discussed his grown kids and mine.  He assured me that all his kids wanted was for him to be happy. Maybe that was true, but alone and counting what money he had wasn't his definition of was theirs. When their rejection of me became readily apparent, he took the stand that I was his priority and those who didn't respect that could go their own way because nothing they could say or do would change his position. SouthernBelle


Hi SouthernBelle,

I don't know why people don't give a person a chance but I can relate to your story too!!

I had 4 Step-Mothers, none of them wanted us, my father's children. One of them made my brother sleep outside when my father was away. On the ground, without cover.  They would take us at first and then give us back to our Grandparents.  After awhile, we just stayed with our Grandparents.  We never knew what our father was going to do.  He was a mean man.

I think Step-Mothers get a terrible rap, though. Some of them can be great and you sound like one of them.  My hat is off to you!  It takes a lot of love for your husband to love his children, especially when you're not being loved back.

I know of one Step-Mother who came into a family and was treated so badly that I could not believe it!  Her husband's kids were older and yes, they thought she was there for the money.

She is a most loved woman by them now. She took a lot of hateful and rude remarks from his grown kids.  His parents were really great to her and I know that made her husband grateful. 

Now, she is loved by her Step Daughter's child so much!  And, both grown kids adore her.  It can happen.

As to why people don't give Step-Mothers a chance?  I don't know the answer to that.  Cinderella story?  The wicked Step-Mother?  Could be.  Whatever it is, it needs a lot of re-visiting. 

Congratulations on your victory. 


Welcome to our Growing Clan, SouthernBelle. I can't understand adult children acting like that. Little kids fearing step-mom's, yes...look at what Prissy had to put up with and go through...all with no rhyme or reason. How terrible for her to have suffer such neglect.

But when the "kids" are grown, gone from home and on their own, whose business is it, anyway?  ??? How stupid and disgusting. You made lemonade out of lemons but it cost you big time. Forgiveness is written all over your post but so is hurt. How totally unnecessary. On the other hand, it's great that your guy was worth it! Did his kids ever have the decency to apologize? Did they learn anything? Blessings, Luise
Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible. Dalai Lama


Hi SouthernBelle!

Thanks for sharing your story. To answer your question: I don't know why. But I know that whatever you had to go through and put up with, work through, etc. have played a part in you becoming who you are right now. It was one thing in your life path that perhaps was meant to be there for you to grow individually.

I have come to a point in my life where I try to practice gratitude for all that has happened in my life. All the good and all the bad - all of it has shaped me into what I am now. I could not have made it without both - the bad and the good.


OMG! Thinking...thinking...feeling your anguish...feeling...feeling...
Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible. Dalai Lama


I have been married to my husband for 20 years and he has a son and a daughter from his previous marriage. I had a son was a single mother then we had a child together. My problem is my stepdaughter we have always been close I have always supported my stepchildren. There mother is a controller so they did not have the best of life at home. They had to work and do chores all the time at my house they did chores but were also allowed to be kids go to movies have friends over etc.
Their mother caused a lot of problems still me and the kids got along fairly well my stepdaughter married her high school sweetheart they were together 8 yrs they divorced she went wild drinking having sex then she told me she was lonely and depressed begged her to come home no she would not plus she had her cat was not gonna give up the cat we have dogs that do not like cats so she stayed at her apartment.
then she met another guy not even divorced 3 months and he seemed like a good guy I did ask her to please take her time with this one no she had to move in with him. Then they both quit their jobs moved in with his parents.  they got married 2 years into the relationship they had a baby boy we were thrilled however she and I had an argument we met with her husband and her and my husband. Well her husband started telling me off my husband stopped him everything seemed ok.
Then when the baby was almost one year old the step daughter got drunk made all kinds of trouble called her mom instead of her mom taking her home to sleep it off they went to her husbands parents house to get her stuff and the baby the police were called she left the baby the next day her mother was driving her crazy she called us she and the baby came to live with us two days after they moved in the husband and her got in a fight she downed a bottle of Tylenol pm 911 was called she was admitted to physic ward all the while I was in her corner supporting her. Time went by they worked things out. On my husbands birthday she calls her dad and they go to lunch it was my day off I was not invited I was really hurt by this we got in a big fight she called me names only thing I told her was to grow up and admit she was wrong for once in her life I told her how come you never tell or call your mother those names she said I can call you names your not my real family I told her those are strong words that she might regret.
Told her I am out of your life my stepchildren got double birthdays double Christmas double valentines double easter double 4th of july double back to school clothes my husband never missed a child support payment I love these kids as my own. The one time in all these years I take up for myself and she treats me this way and now she will not allow us to see  the baby her father is devasted she is not allowing him to see him once she said we could we told her we were going swimming she was ok with it time to go pick him up she said he could come but no swimming. yet the inlaws can take him swimming they do everything with him. She sent me a email to reconcile but it was all about how I should respect her yet she calls me a crazy vicious b--ch I told her she hurt me so much that my heart is broken told me to stop pretending to be sick go back to work and do the right thing I hold her when she worked at the same job for 17 years then maybe she can tell me this. that made her mad too. Told me I was full of BS and she never wanted to hear from me again then her husband gets on and tells me I am putting an end to the nonsense so tell me folks what would you do!! I miss my grandson but not enough to be treated this way! and I will not meet with her if her husband is gonna be there cos I am not gonna have him tell me anything he talks about her to me on the phone behind her back I told him I am not gonna be in the middle of your fights.

Green Thumb

HI LH56,
Sure sounds like way too much drama in your family. I can see why you and your husband would be upset. Also sounds like perhaps some mental illness or alcohol/drug abuse going on. Divorce creates a whole new situation as parents and it is not always easy (I am divorced and remarried also). You have tried to be rational with this step daughter and it has backfired. I highly suggest Al Anon Family Groups to learn about alcoholism (and drug abuse) in one's family and how to deal with it without enabling the alcoholic. Arguments don't work but there are techniques to help you and your husband learn to detach with love. Many of us on this forum have had to decide that the drama and chaos, arguments and feeling upset were not worth it in our lives. As parents, we naturally grieve when our adult children are toxic to us and it can't be solved. Counseling can be very helpful in these situations. Wishing you the best in moving forward.


Lots going on here! I think it takes amazing people and a lot of work to put a blended family together. My experience with step-relatives hasn't been great:

My SM rejected me & my sib from before day 1. We were never going to be accepted. My DF turned his considerable finances over to her (she had nothing to begin with.) Her AC & GC are the ones that matter now. I am not allowed to speak to my dad on the phone w/o her being on the line. I finally had to cut them off more or less because it still hurts too much.

My DH's SM wouldn't allow the GC into the house that had been DH's family home. We chose to not visit rather than put our kids through that rejection. We missed having extended family on both sides!

I don't understand why kids reject SPs or why SPs reject kids. If you love the person you claim to love, it seems as if loving the person(s) they love would be something to strive for.

Respect ... is appreciation of the separateness of the other person, of the ways in which he or she is unique.
-- Annie Gottlieb