kellymom2004's picture

Extremely Difficult Situation

I am new to this community. I came across this website in desperate search on the internet for some helpful tips with handling the emotions that have risen over the past few months.

My husband and I have a unique and difficult situation: We were 9 months pregnant (read: I could have gone into labor at any moment) when he met his daughter for the first, then almost 4. There is a lot behind that, but he had no idea she existed until we were married. Because mom took him to court and then disappeared for a year, we did not meet her until our son was almost born.

Over the years there has been much drama with his ex, but this past fall we had to come with the police to remove his daughter from her mothers home because of her excessive alcoholism. Even though we have accumluated a mountain of evidence against her, and his daughter now lives with us, things are shaky.

I thought that his daughter and I had a pretty good relationship (she used to come and stay with us every other weekend) but now that she lives with us, things have been tumultuous. The crazy thing is that I am the one who is emotionally withdrawn from her, and I hate that I feel this way, but she annoys me to pieces. Then I feel guilty, and then I hate myself for it, but I can't seem to break down the barrier I feel.

So many things have happened and been said between her and I, (She was VERY mean for the first 3 months that she came to stay with us.) She is only 8 years old, and of course I know that she has been through so much.

She missed so much school, and so she is so behind, and that has not helped our relationship, trying to help her with her school work with my other kids to take care of (i have a 4 year old and a baby with my husband of 6 years) We can easily spend 3-4 hours on homework every day.

I just feel so lost....this has been so much harder than I thought it would be, and it seems to consume so much of my husband and mine's relationship. Sometimes I wonder if things wouldn'd be better off with us in different households, at least for a little while. I feel like every day I am drowning, and this negative situation is the constant thread through our family. My husband and I rarely talk about anything else. It is so draining, I just don't know if I want to go through this for another 10 years, but I also don't want to take my kids away from their father.

concerned mom's picture
concerned mom

Wow. I can only imagine how hard it must be for you in this situation. It's obviously not what you and your husband planned for, but sometimes life deals you cards that you must either accept or move on from. I'm sure a lot of pressure is put on you, and it sounds like you're trying. The problem is you're emotionally disconnected from your husband's daughter b/c she's not your own. It seems like you hate being in the situation you're in, and you feel stuck. You have to weigh the pros and cons. If you want to stay married to your husband, you need to accept the situation for what it is and make the best of it. Unfortunately that's the reality here. Your other choice, if you feel the situation is unbearable and you are unhappy, is to leave your husband, or maybe separate for a while to see if that's really what you want. This second choice comes w/ a lot of repercussions as well. While your children can still be a part of their father's life and your life, you will lose the relationship you have w/ your husband. Are you willing to sacrifice that? What does your husband say about all this? The fact remains, whether you like it or not, your husband has a daughter from a previous relationship. You have to take a good look at your current life and say, can I accept and deal w/ this reality for the long hall or will I be totally miserable for the rest of my life. Have you considered counceling? I strongly suggest it for you and your family no matter which way you decide to go. Put your kids and yourself first, and base your decision on what you feel will be best for you and them. While I'm a strong advocate of working through things and finding the best possible solution, not everyone is cut out for that. You deserve to be happy, whatever you choose. Good luck. I hope the decision you make will be the right one for all of you. I wish you the best.

Sister83's picture

Does this child have learning disabilities or is she just too far behind?

I know public schools aren't always the best, but perhaps you could reach out to the administration and see if there are any resources available in the community to children in your step-daughter's situation.