Stepdad hates his stepson still

I haven't liked him since I met him eight years ago. He was a self-centered, spoiled, whiny brat, and still is.

Now, yes, a 4-y/o *IS* self-centered. But his mom (my wife #2) and his father spoil the little shitball, keeping him from physically-taxing chores, because, y'know, it could tire him out.

He's 12 y/o now and has never raked a leaf, mowed a lawn, pulled a weed (without whining like a baby-b****), or lifted a shovel full of snow. I get mad at this, and want him to contribute with (meaningful) chores like this. But, "It's not your responsibility to raise him." my wife says.

So, fine. But I can't stand dealing with this little f****** cupcake every day. His father (a Casper Milquetoast, big government type) is just pathetic. Despite his political leaning (which, honestly, I can dismiss) he is chronically "sick" or nursing some sort of bronchial infestation, hacking every time he picks up his son for parenting time.

A word about the (arguably liberal) philosophies that my wife and her ex have bought into (that is, to turn over more and more of one's life and decisions to government, especially the public schools) is partially to blame.

I think we've all watched (with growing horror) the trend in our schools, like:

• Self esteem is king
• You are your kid's best friend
• Everyone's a winner! etc.

This mamby-pamby approach to child rearing is destroying (has destroyed) our youth. They feel entitled to happiness, liberated from judgment, and deserving of success, no matter what.

SS is so used to having his problems solved for him that he’s afraid of making a mistake. His mom and dad shield him from any and all failure. It drives me insane.

He doesn't wash dishes because, you know, his mom thinks that it's a kind of icky job and there’s sharp knives and a pizza cutter, and he didn't use all of those dishes, so he shouldn't have to clean up after our mess.

REALLY? I’d think that cutting his finger while mishandling a knife is, I dunno, good schooling.

He's at "that age" too where he mockingly disrespects his mom, and that infuriates me. He tries to be humorous (but isn't) and laughs at everything he says. It's annoying as h***.

Whomever said it in the previous posts is spot on: kids are stupid, ignorant creatures (and I have two late-teen natural sons and teach high school, so I should know). Both of my sons are stupid and ignorant -- gradually becoming less so. It's bullshit how "bright a youngster" he/she is. Their brains are mushy masses of forming tissue. But, to my SS's mom and dad, you'd think he s**** golden turds.

What is it that makes a parent think they're helping their kid by protecting him from hard realities and natural consequences? Is it because he's their only child? I think that has TONS to do with it. He is (and he knows he is) the center of their orbit. It's disgusting how he manipulates them.

Does anyone else's 12+ y/o SS or SD YELL to be tucked in at night?

Is ice cream before bedtime -- EVERY SINGLE NIGHT (I'm not kidding!) -- a treat or EXPECTED? You wouldn't believe the fuss he puts up when told that, because he was late getting ready for bed, it's too late to eat his nightly ice cream treat.

I can't stand how he runs into a challenge and then STOPS, whines, and then waits to be told EXACTLY what to do, then moves along blithely as if he's found the cure for cancer.

I feel the need for some cowboy justice: I while ago, I took the family to a dude ranch and they went horseback riding. You should have seen the look on my wife's face as she returned -- COMPLETELY at her wit's end with her inconsolable, whiny, incessantly complaining brat. EVERYTHING came into perspective when, on the way to the stable, the cowboy leading the ride said -- half to himself, half to her -- "What that boy needs is a day shoveling manure to adjust his attitude!"

I tell you the truth, I almost jumped out of my seat and kissed that cowboy! He knew EXACTLY how to deal with a spoiled brat -- and he "just knew" this without ever having to read Dr. Spock or listen to Oprah. It took him all of about 3 minutes of listening to his whimpering to know what builds (or refines) character and respect. After 12+ years, my SS's mom and dad still haven't a clue.

I've rambled and ranted, but I can't tell this to anyone else. Thanks for reading. I hope at least a few of you can relate.

Nov 17, 2012

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  • Finally an honest hard working man's perspective. It's hard to be a step dad. I understand situations are different, but for the most part, step dad's are held to a particular standard that is just not fair. I speak from a very metal stance. You choose to be with us, so you choose to accept our parenting tactics. We get the dad duties but not that dad glory, because whether you verbally say it or not, all you mother's agree "mom knows best." If you expect us to wipe your kids ass with a smile, you should allow us to have the same say over your child's upbringing, because hey, they are living under our roof too. Don't be hypocritical and expect the world from step dad but have final say in everything. This stops a stepfather from instilling those fatherly things, whether biological or not. This also teaches the kids that mom "wears the pants" in the family, and over stepping so dad's word is acceptable. All kids need a father figure, even if they get along with their real father already, accept the fact that the kid (s) now have 2 in their life. To create that family dynamic, this needs to happen, especially if you plan on reproducing with step dad.

    Mom - Be mom. Do mom things, show your kids how to love and be loved. Comfort them at night when they have a nightmare, always listen to them and offer an open heart. Show them that mom can do anything.

    Step Dad/Dad - (notice same playing field) Be dad. Do dad things, tell them they are fine when they fall down and get a scrape, teach them how to shovel mom's car out of the snow in the winter. Show them how to weed the garden in the summer. Instill that working hard builds a man, not material things.

    Mom and stepdad - understand each other and shears have each other's backs. If step dad says JUMP in front of the kids, mom you're jumping too. Vice versa. Have to be on the same playing field always, especially if you want this mixed family dynamic to work.

  • You sound exactly like my husband. We have been married for only a year and a half. My children, his stepson, are now 6 & 8. He favors the younger one and treats the eldest like s***. The poor kid can't do any right in his eyes. We fight all the time now because I feel he is destroying my child's soul. Yes my son has moments of disrespect, backtalk etc. But for the most part he will do as he is told nearly every time. I feel his aggression and his inability to sleep is coming from the negative treatment he receives daily from his stepdad. Like you, my husband blames the child and takes no responsibility for his problems. Then gets mad when I defend my child. They are children! !! We are suppose to mold them and teach them how to be a positive member of society. Men who "parent" using threats and verbal abuse are creating the problem. Pretty sure if you treated the stepson with the same respect you expect problems would deminish. I know if my husband took this route I'd be more accepting to how he'd like to discipline as I wouldn't feel the need to protect my boys from his irrational actions towards them. Anyways, would love to hear if any stepdad out there found a way to fix the relationship with their ss. As right now if it's impossible I may have to break my heart and leave the man I love to save my children from years of feeling not wanted by him.

  • Great post, dude, notwithstanding you're desire for a broke-back moment with that cowboy. First, you SS's behavior probably have less to do with his dad's political leanings as i myself am a liberal, and more to do with bad parenting. I married my wife with three children. Up front I let these little f****** know a) who was in charge and b) that namby pamby bullshit wouldn't be tolerated. My wife has the desire to continue to baby them and they whine plenty with her. But I explained that young boys need to grow into men and there is a clear path to that end, beginning with responsibility. So far there hasn't been any real issues although last year we almost divorced over it. The problem was she was being absolutely stupid. I kept saying i'm not sure how making them do their own laundry, clean up their dishes, fold their clothes, and spend time with the dogs they wanted was the problem. My oldest is the daughter and she is absolutely lazy as f***! My wife and I argued and she wanted to basically deal with her on her own. Now she's dictating to my wife when she wants to go to school etc. She's basically a good kid and just stays in her room, but I fear my wife has crippled her in all she does because it doesn't build up confidence in the child, etc. Sounds like you SS has no confidence b/c he's never had to be challenged. Again, its a parenting issue and not political. Your frustration is over your feelings of being powerless b/c you "see" the problems this is going to cause for the kid down the road. I feel your frustration but in order to resolve this you need to get the parent or both parents on board. Good luck.

  • Thanks for your response... been trying to respond, but with the long weekend, it's been hard to do so -- esp. with my wife (whom I love deeply) around. Just can't explain or "talk through" my depth of intolerance for her son with her. Imagine THAT!)
    I know it's NOT political -- thanks for focusing me. I've voiced and we've discussed this (child) issue countless times. Ultimately it's MY issue (and I know this). Like, when he's back-talking, he lowers his voice so that I can't overhear him. He argues 'silently' with her and she engages almost all of the time. He says infuriating things like, "So, you don't want me to have fun!" when he's told to go to bed -- after a day at the water park, a trip to the Lego store, and a 6 hours play date. Then, she takes the bait: "No! No! That's not it at all! You know that I want you to have fun! Blah, blah, blah..." I simply can't stand this little f***'s laziness and his weaseling, and the refusal from either of his bio-parents to correct it. It's probably too late for them to do anything meaningful about it. Damn...I have to hurry up and post this, but want to comment further on this and your situation as well. Thanks, again. Bye for now...

  • I applaud you for laying down the law at the beginning. But, as you eventually discovered, "Mama knows best." And now you have an "us against him" scenario. That sucks. SS is basically a good kid, too. Yet he's emotionally 6 -- and being consistently protected from challenging physical labor. He's a weeny. Scrawny and completely devastated at having to take the garbage out to the covered bin I built, because, y'know, there might be bugs inside. I wish I could YouTube him doing so -- it's as if there are rabid wolverines guarding the afraid of even *seeing* a bug, then screaming like a little girl if he sees a beetle or cricket. He refuses to go outside if he sees a fly (I'm dead serious!) on the screen. And, god help him and everyone around him if he happens to get "buzzed" by a bee or a dragonfly. It's as if he were being attacked by a swarm of angry hornets. It's comical to watch, and utterly disgusting/pathetic. "Fears aren't rational!" my wife says. To which I reply, "Bugs and insects are everywhere -- he needs to deal with it, and grow some stones. He's a boy, goddamnit." You're right. I "see" where this is going, and it makes me sick.
    Oh! And ride a bike with friends? OH NO!! He's scared he might fall off and scrape his knee. I s*** you not. HE'S 12, for Chrissake!! Do you know of any 12-year old boy who is terrified of -- actively avoids -- riding a bike with a neighborhood pal?? I can't believe how much of a p**** he's been allowed to grow into. And, no, I'm not some jock douchebag who wants him to play contact sports. I want him to help the f*** out around the house. Leaves his f****** dishes on the table, his candy wrappers on the f****** floor, the door wide open when he leaves, all the f****** lights on, gets "ill" if asked to clean the cat litter box or clean up the dog s*** from the yard. So, of course, mom intervenes. WTF!!?? I totally agree with the laundry, dishes, and playing with the dog expectation.

  • It would be a challenge to change him, especially this late in life. He will find things out the hard way when the real world comes knocking, unless daddy is so filthy rich that he can protect the kid long enough that he remains useless forever. There wre a few times I thought my parents were not fair with the amountof chores etc we did, but of course they were and looking back I thank them for it now.

  • Yeah you have to be raised right, brought up not dragged up but still? This guy is a bit extreme, I mean he must have been a kid too and he says they're horrible? Why have them then idiot?

  • Wow this guy needs to get down from his horse my dad sounds alot like you till that fathfull day he closed his mouth and never opened it agin u were a kid also self centern and all so stop trying to fool ur self into thinking ur any better then him or any one to be exact

  • But that's the point, IRAkid, I *AM* better "then" him. And you, too, it seems from the way you cant rite a good sentance or punkchuate it to be exact aren't u missing playing warcraft right now the adults are talking hahaha jestkidding

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