“Just because someone calls you an asshole doesn’t mean that you’re an asshole.”
This, my friends, is the best advice I’ve received all summer. It came from a woman I admire immensely – she’s completely sure of who she is, she protects her marriage, she’s a great parent, she’s a great mentor and she’s able to just move on when she realizes someone is a complete waste of space. Which I’m insanely jealous of. I hold on for dear life, trying to see and hope for the best in people, even when it’s clear that someone is fucked up beyond all recognition.
Any coward can run and hide from their feelings. It takes true strength to confront them, ask for help and be vulnerable. Instead of making fun of my tears, my family should be happy I’m still shedding them. Because when I stop, that’ll be the day that I’m checked out.
So skid #2 got a giant tattoo of his parents’ names on his side. And in front of me (but of course not in front of his dad), he said that it’s because that’s how his family should be. Well, news flash, homeboy. Mommy left Daddy for a lesbian threesome. And then Daddy married someone who actually loves, respects and appreciates him and you. So since he was purposely hurtful, I asked my husband to tell him he needs to keep his shirt on when he’s in my house.
Anyway, my stepson, who’s used to getting and doing whatever he wants, whenever he wants, didn’t like that for once, it wasn’t all about him. At first, I told my husband I was proud of his son for being receptive to their conversation instead of turning on me like an angry, dumb teenager. Man, was I ever wrong.
Instead, he started saying really mean things on his Twitter account, such as “She needs to get outta this house” and “You’re not my family just because my dad married you.” So I tried to approach him about it on Sunday night. Instead of fixing anything, he blew up at me and blamed me for everything his mother blames me for (unfairly, and mostly lies). Later on, he told my husband all the reasons he doesn’t like me and why I’ll never be his family.
Several things bother me about this situation. First and foremost, what a horrible excuse of a mother that woman is. How in God’s name she ever thought it would be appropriate to pit her son against his father is beyond me. No wonder their funny, affectionate child is now a moody, mean, manipulative teenager. He’s being emotionally abused by his own mother. Second, she has clearly transferred her lack of respect for my husband to their son. That their son would actually believe that his loving, amazing father would let a total stranger come in and turn his dad into a puppet?! So ridiculous I can’t even comprehend it.
Also, there’s a serious life lesson that I wish he’d learn here. And that’s that if you’re going to put hurtful things about somebody, anybody, in print, then you should suffer the consequences. In his case, I hope that the recruiters he’s trying to make contact with to play basketball in college don’t look at his Twitter account and see a child who is mean, lacks judgment and could be a problem for a program. And, I hope that he realizes he’s damaging his father and my reputations by doing what he’s doing. It’s disrespectful and childish.
On the surface, I know that he is a spoiled and manipulative teenager who will hopefully grow out of it someday. His dad has taught him the difference between right and wrong and has been an amazing example of kindess and fairness. So it’ll be on my stepson to determine if he’s ever going to be adult enough to confront his situation and make good choices based on his own experiences or if he’s going to be his mom’s puppet forever. All I want is for him to be happy and well-adjusted. So if he decides that’s without me, then so be it. But he’ll have to suffer the consequences of how deeply he’s hurting his dad.
And the ex is a lost cause. She’s a crazy narcissist who clearly lives on another planet in her brain. She’ll never be a good person. Or even honest. And the fact that she’s so obsessed and fixated on me gives me immense satisfaction.
Obviously, I’m deeply hurt. I’ve wasted my 20s trying to be what I thought my husband and stepsons wanted and needed me to be. I made the mistake of trying to fit into their traditions and hobbies and life instead of demanding to be on an equal playing field. I’ve been guilted into paying for things and doing things that hurt me. And now, I just want to be happy. I deserve to be. I work hard on the clock and in my relationships, and I’ve earned respect.
The worst part about this whole situation is seeing tears streaming down my husband’s face. I know he’s in pain and he’s scared to death that he’s going to lose either me or his son. He’s probably ashamed that his son is acting the way he is. He’s angry that he can’t fix everything. He’s angry at how unfair everything is. And it’s probably hard for him that since I’m the focus of all this hate, I can’t just sit back and be happy and supportive. I do hope that he chooses to protect our marriage, to be a parent instead of a friend and to help guide me through the things I need to do to help mend the situation.
I am lucky that my husband is kind, calm and fair. I need his help to be productive instead of angry and vengeful. He’s a great teacher and I need him to lead me.
I 100% believe that when the marriage comes first, just like we promise in vows, everything else falls together.