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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been married for 5 months and my new wife does everything she can to tell me how much she doesn't like how my kids are. Her kids are active with sports and outside hobbies, always on the move. Mine are the opposite. They like video games and computers and aren't athletic. Every weekend that I have them we get into arguments about how I should be making my kids go outside and ride bikes and play sports, how mine are lazy and immature. It's to the point that I'm fed up with hearing it. I'm really re-evaluating my ability to stay with her. It's at the point that I don't look forward to weekends anymore. Even when I don't have my kids. I only have my children four days a month and all I hear is that I'm not doing a good job with how they are. How they aren't like her kids and outgoing athletes. I tell her to let me raise my kids how I need to raise them and to stop forcing her ways onto them. That I'm their father and will do whatever I see fit with them for the short time that I have them. My kids don't want anything to do with her and its starting to turn towards me. She is the evil step mother kids always talk about. She never says hi to them or tries to talk to them ever. She just ignores them. I don't know how to get us on common ground over all of this and I am starting to see that if not resolved soon, it will cost me this marriage. I just don't have the patience for it anymore. I need help.
 

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What was she like to your children before you married her?

I'd say that she probably is just trying to help and get your kids more active... except that you say she does not even say hi to your kids. That's unacceptable as is the rest of her behavior.

How old are her kids and your kids? \

What are your interactions with her children like?

You have two reasonable choices here:

1) Get to a counselor so that she and you can learn how to properly step parent. If this does not work divorce her.

2) Just go right to divorce.

There is no way you should stay married to a woman who is rude and/or mean to your children.
 
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
@EleGirl,
My daughter is 11 in a few weeks and my son is 13. Her kids are both boys, 12 & 16 in a few weeks. I get along with her youngest son fine. We aren't close but we can talk to each other and throw the ball around, stuff like that, but we aren't close. The oldest boy and I don't talk at all. It was a hard time for him to see me in the picture when we were first together a few years ago. He became physical and verbally abusive with his mother and once with me when I stepped in between them when it got out of hand. He actually is now doing well since the wedding. He is calm, polite and loving towards my wife now, but the barrier hasn't come down between him and I. I don't push it and give him space. I figure time will allow that to take shape.

My wife and I do really well when it's just us, but once our kids come into the picture things change. There is just no compromise in her views or behavior and I'm simply mentally more out. What scares me is this is only 5 months of marriage. She wasn't like this until we got married. Then she changed.
 

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Perhaps now that she's married she feels she has more power in the relationship than before.

I've heard that it takes about 5 years for a blended family to bond and be a family. The 16 year old will probably never get there.

The other's have a chance. I highly suggest that you tell her that it's counseling for two of you.

If she refuses then perhaps tell her that either the two of you go to counseling or the marriage is over. She might need to feel like she will lose something important before she will change.

Just curious, do you take your kids out to do activities?
 

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What she is doing is wrong in so many ways...this is what I would do..sit her down
And tell her ....your kids aren't going anywhere ...I lve them and I lve u ...let her knw up front ....that if she doesn't respect ur kids ..or how u want to raise them..the marriage
Will not work . Period ..u have to be firm and very upfront ...so there is no misunderstanding .... If ur not honest and firm..she won't take u serious.. And she will
Keep being mean..I wish u good luck
 

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The only woman who I will even consider allowing to have a say in how I raise my daughter = is her mother/my wife.

I was kicked out on the streets at 12 because my own mum's bf didn't want me around. To this day I have not found him, in the past I've hunted him down wanting to rip him apart. I have not found my peace, have not tasted justice, yet. But meh, I'm over it...

Except for the fact I DESPISE anyone who chooses their partners over their children. Sorry, but a woman like your wife, I would tell her to get the f--k out of my life if she can't love my child. Children MUST be priority.
 

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This is a complicated situation for sure.

On one hand, do you agree with your wife that it's not ideal for your kids to be playing video games constantly? I agree with her on this point that the kids should be more active, outside and their video games should be limited. I don't agree with forcing anyone to play sports though.

You are probably afraid to be a disciplinarian to your children since you divorced their mother. You have feelings of guilt and whatnot.

So the first thing you have to face is do you really belive it's ok to allow your kids to play video games all day, or do your really think this is not ideal but you are afraid your children will not like you anymore if you set limits on them?

What I am suggesting is that you gain confidence in what you are doing, why you are doing it. Even if you are allowing them to play and you don't feel it is ideal, it could be that considering all factors, mainly thinking that your wife controls what they do 26 days out of every month, and your 4 days are not going to make a difference, and all it will do is harm your relationsihp with your kids. Then this is OK if you know what you are doing and why you are doing it.

Once you sort through in your own mind what you are doing and why, you have to flat out ask your wife if she is willing to treat your children with love, compassion and in a motherly way, whether she is willing to accept the style of raising them? Let her tell you what she is or is not willing to do or how or how not she will act with your children.

If she is not willing to act in the way you need her to keep your children happy and safe and cherished, then you must leave her.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I am very grateful for all of the feedback that all of you have given to me on this subject. I do not do as many activities with my kids as I know that I should have. I do agree with my wife that they should not be on video games as much as they should. Ive always hated it. I was raised to be outside, getting dirty and scraped up. My kids didn't pick that up. I have told my kids that we will be limiting the amount of time that they spend on technology and have even made this next weekend a "No Tech" weekend. All games and phones get set aside, including mine. I am a software project manager myself so tech is big in my life as well. So it will be good for all of us. I do have a tremendous amount of guilt over the divorce and I also have a tremendous desire to not upset them by being an overly strict dad on the four days that I have them. then to add trying to keep my wife at least minimally happy with the situation. I will have to talk to my wife about us getting into counseling before things get too far to bring back to a productive place. Keep the advice coming. it really does help.
 

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Whilst I can understand your W disapproving of children, in general, being allowed to spend so much time playing video games and sitting in front of computers, this is something that you have limited control over with yours as they are only with you 4 days a month.

I agree with others who have suggested counseling, because your W ignoring your children and criticizing your parenting whilst they're in your care must be pretty hurtful and damaging to all concerned.
 

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Ditto on the counseling advice.....may even be helpful for the entire family to get some. Sounds like your W expects you to except her 'package deal' but she doesn't have to reciprocate. Your children should not be treated as unwelcome strangers in your home. IMO if your W truly loved you, then her behavior towards them would reflect that.

As far as the video game thing - I do agree the time spent here should be limited. But I don't agree with how your W is handling it. Comparing your children to hers is not fair to them or you. They're not going to be the same; they have a different set of parents. We had 3 sons, 1 was into video games & computers and the twins were into anything & everything sports. We didn't push any of them to be anything but who they were. However, we did limit our one son on game and computer time.
 

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I'm wondering whether your kids have not been accepting of your wife, maybe even said something to her disrespectfully and no she's distanced herself from them. She won't tell you because she doesn't want more issues between you and her, but at the same time she isn't going to be friendly with them because of what they said/did.
 

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You know-

I had just typed out a "thoughtful" and diplomatic reply....but then I re-read your posts and deleted it all.

What really sticks out to me is:

" She never says hi to them or tries to talk to them ever. She just ignores them."

and the fact that your kids are a mere 11 and 13 years-old

Yeah.

You know what?

screw being thoughtful.

This woman is obviously AWFUL if she thinks it's acceptable to give the cold-shoulder to little CHILDREN. Who the hell does that?

That behavior indicates that she's petty, mean and emotionally immature.

And you're a bad father...yes, a BAD FATHER...if you continue to tolerate this treatment of your kids...that's just the ugly truth.

I can't even muster advice on how to get her to change so that this doesn't "cost you your marriage"...I mean...is that really such a bad scenario?

It's very hard for me to imagine you that can't do better than this...and your kids deserve better during their "four monthly visits" certainly.
 

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The only woman who I will even consider allowing to have a say in how I raise my daughter = is her mother/my wife..............

Except for the fact I DESPISE anyone who chooses their partners over their children. Sorry, but a woman like your wife, I would tell her to get the f--k out of my life if she can't love my child. Children MUST be priority.
Same except swap the genders.

My kids have two perfectly good parents, no other man will be parenting my kids. SO and I are on the same page with this.

OP your wife has some serious boundary issues and it is all going to end very badly. Tell her to pull her head in or walk.
 

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I don't have any advice but I must say I welcome the idea of any other children in my life but being involved, polite and on the same page would be very important to me. Adults should always have a united front but they need to open their hearts to the other children as if they were adopted, IMO
 

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Definitely some major issues - professional counseling is needed to resolve.

I was involved with a man who had two daughters. Initially, we didn't spend much time with them but after I moved in with him, they were visiting more frequently. I tried to get along with them but really, they were mean and hateful when he wasn't around or left the room,etc. The relationship just didn't last much longer.
 

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Four days a month, and your wife can't reign it in. Can't even pretend?

She may not like how your children are being raised by their mother ... tough sh!t. Not her call. Ever.

If your children are behavior problems while they are with you and fundamentally upset the function of your household when you have them, then setting and abiding by rules is one thing.

But ... given the details you provide, this doesn't really sound like it has anything to do with the kids, and everything to do with the adults.

If you are looking to change the dynamic of how your kids operate in terms of activities while you have them ... once again, that's going to be on you. You will need to lead, and guide.

If your kid's standard M.O. is to hang out and play video games, and you pull the cord and tell them to go outside or find something else to do, all you will likely accomplish to further alienate both your kids and your wife.

Lead. Show them. Take them out hiking. Take them swimming. Go into the city. Go to a museum, a park, the aquarium, a zoo, a local sporting event. Get them away from the console and out of the house ... if that is what YOU decide needs to happen.

Invite your wife to be part of that ... but I'm going to presume (call me cynical) that her weekends revolve around HER kids activities. Basically you need to do the same with or without her blessing.

You summed up the core problem in your thread subject. The issue is your wife, not your kids. I say you start calling her on her bullsh!t. It's wrong, and you need to let her know that in no uncertain terms.

Counseling is a good idea to help the two of you cement the real issue ... which likely has nothing to do with your kids activity level.
 

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This is a complicated situation for sure.

On one hand, do you agree with your wife that it's not ideal for your kids to be playing video games constantly? I agree with her on this point that the kids should be more active, outside and their video games should be limited. I don't agree with forcing anyone to play sports though.

You are probably afraid to be a disciplinarian to your children since you divorced their mother. You have feelings of guilt and whatnot.

So the first thing you have to face is do you really belive it's ok to allow your kids to play video games all day, or do your really think this is not ideal but you are afraid your children will not like you anymore if you set limits on them?

What I am suggesting is that you gain confidence in what you are doing, why you are doing it. Even if you are allowing them to play and you don't feel it is ideal, it could be that considering all factors, mainly thinking that your wife controls what they do 26 days out of every month, and your 4 days are not going to make a difference, and all it will do is harm your relationsihp with your kids. Then this is OK if you know what you are doing and why you are doing it.

Once you sort through in your own mind what you are doing and why, you have to flat out ask your wife if she is willing to treat your children with love, compassion and in a motherly way, whether she is willing to accept the style of raising them? Let her tell you what she is or is not willing to do or how or how not she will act with your children.

If she is not willing to act in the way you need her to keep your children happy and safe and cherished, then you must leave her.
Sorry, but I have to disagree on the order of approaching this. You are sending two awful messages to the children by requiring them to first be active outside under these circumstances. First, that they will be loved only if they conform to her view of what a child should be. They will hear that they are not deserving of love and respect unless they buckle to what she wants. Second, that they should associate physical activity with the wicked witch. The resentment they have for the step-mother will transferred to physical activity. This will be counter-productive.

Look again at the original post - she is not even saying hello to the two kids. She needs to change her attitude first. She is the adult, while they are only children. To do otherwise rewards her awful behavior. Only after that occurs will you have a real chance to change the children's behavior.
 

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Four days a month, and your wife can't reign it in. Can't even pretend?

She may not like how your children are being raised by their mother ... tough sh!t. Not her call. Ever.

If your children are behavior problems while they are with you and fundamentally upset the function of your household when you have them, then setting and abiding by rules is one thing.

But ... given the details you provide, this doesn't really sound like it has anything to do with the kids, and everything to do with the adults.

If you are looking to change the dynamic of how your kids operate in terms of activities while you have them ... once again, that's going to be on you. You will need to lead, and guide.

If your kid's standard M.O. is to hang out and play video games, and you pull the cord and tell them to go outside or find something else to do, all you will likely accomplish to further alienate both your kids and your wife.

Lead. Show them. Take them out hiking. Take them swimming. Go into the city. Go to a museum, a park, the aquarium, a zoo, a local sporting event. Get them away from the console and out of the house ... if that is what YOU decide needs to happen.

Invite your wife to be part of that ... but I'm going to presume (call me cynical) that her weekends revolve around HER kids activities. Basically you need to do the same with or without her blessing.

You summed up the core problem in your thread subject. The issue is your wife, not your kids. I say you start calling her on her bullsh!t. It's wrong, and you need to let her know that in no uncertain terms.

Counseling is a good idea to help the two of you cement the real issue ... which likely has nothing to do with your kids activity level.
While I agree with this, I do fear it is too late, in that the kids will know that this physical activity thing is really coming from the step-mom. It will not be perceived as leading, even if that is what he wants.
 
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