Having a really hard time trying to deal with dad’s ex who is still living in the same household.
Hi, I’m 13 years old, and you’re going to need some background information. My parents were divorced when I was around 2 years old. I can’t give you many details about it because I don’t remember it all, luckily. All I know is that my dad got me every other week. When I was around 3 or 4, my dad found love again. Eventually they moved in together and we lived happily for a few years. Then one day they decided to get a divorce. Yet again I don’t remember much of it because I was still young. After the divorce, I was stuck living with my Grandma until I was in the 4th grade. Then my dad moved back in with his second ex-wife, because she was pregnant with my dad’s child. After a while of living in a two bedroom house with 7 people, we decided to move. We moved into my step-mom’s mother’s house. We lived there for about a year, until my stepsister got molested by her young uncle. He almost got me and my sister too. This tore my family apart, and the fighting was worse than I could imagine. Then one day, my step mom called the cops on my dad. My dad did nothing wrong. I know because I was there when it happened. My dad sent me and my sister to our neighbors house until my mom could pick me up. I was crushed. My dad was going to court because my step mom had Post Dramatic Stress Disorder and her and her mom constantly kept accusing my dad of rape and abuse. Things that he has never done and would never do. Along with that, they kept trying to tear me away from my 3 year old brother. They also wouldn’t even let my dad into the house to pack our things. My dad eventually won the case and after 4 months more of going to court for my baby brother we eventually got him back right after Christmas and we got a small rental for just the 4 of us. Things were perfect for me for a whole year until things went downhill. My step mom and her two kids were living with their grandparents because they couldn’t afford the house once my dad left. Eventually the grandparents started to fight and hurt each other, so they decided to stay with us for a while. They have been here for 4 months now and I have hated every moment of it. It’s hard to forgive someone who won’t leave no matter how many times you kick them out and who tried to separate you from your father and brother. I’ve fought with my step mom so many times now and I finally realized she’s insane. She absolutely hates my dad’s awesome new girlfriend and she thinks she live here now. She’s completely taken over my dad’s house and I can’t bear to stay there. So I left behind my pet fish, all my stuff, my baby brother, and my dad to get away from her and go live with my mom. It’s been two weeks and I cry often from missing my dad and his house. I can’t take care of my fish if I’m at my mom’s and one of them has died since I had left two weeks ago. I feel like if I’m rude and horrible enough to my step mom she and her daughter will leave for good. But she can’t take a hint and I feel so alone and mean. It has now gotten to the point to where I’m mean to everyone around me and I feel like I’m going insane. I don’t know what to do. I feel so unloved and so alone. I try to talk to people but it just doesn’t help. It just makes me more angry and stressed. I need advice, I just don’t know what to do with myself.
- You are really trying to handle a lot. You have had to deal with a lot of stress and trauma in your life and it seems as if whenever things are going well, your step mom creates serious problems. You are understandably upset. You have had to move out of your house and away from the people and things that you really love because of your father’s ex-wife. You are being forced to deal with a lot of issues and difficulties that other 13-year old teens do not.
- Through no fault of your own, you are having a difficult time and you need some help. You do need someone to talk to who can help you get through this. Trying to deal with everything on your own is really tough and because you are so young, some things are not in your control. You need adult assistance. One person who could, and should, step in to help is your dad. He is of course under a lot of pressure himself, but, he loves you and should be helping you to deal with the stress, anxiety and sadness that comes with living with your former step mother. Consider sitting down with him and explaining exactly how you feel. Think about letting him know that you feel awful and explain why you have been behaving the way you are behaving. You could let your dad know that you love him and your brother and that being away from your home is making you depressed and leaving you feeling isolated and unloved. Consider providing concrete steps that he can take to help you, such as speaking to his ex-wife and making sure that her behavior changes or if it does not, asking her to leave. Also think about asking him to think about how to solve the problem in a way that does not make you more miserable.
- Sometimes, speaking with a parent who is already under a lot of stress, may not be possible. If you really feel that this is the case for you, please do not stop searching for an adult who can help you. You may want to try your mom, or another relative that you trust. If this does not work, consider speaking to someone at school about how sad and lonely you feel. You need to find someone who can help you. Also, sharing your story on Teencentral.Net was a great place to start. Please continue to share your thoughts and spend some time looking at how other teens are dealing with similar problems. You may find some support here.
- Finally, remember that you are not a mean person, you are a good person who has been placed in a really bad situation. You deserve to be happy. Spending some time and energy trying to feel better and find a solution to your problem is important. It seems that your ex-step mom may not be swayed by your behavior, so being mean to her and her daughter may not help. Consider ways that you can try to cheer yourself up when you are feeling stressed or unhappy. Think about what makes you happy and try to do more of those activities. Also, you could try to find activities outside of the home that may allow you to meet some new people. Hang in there, and please try to talk to an adult and ask for help.
- If you wrote a letter describing how you are feeling that you could share would your father, what would you say?
- What are five things that your step-mom does that are the hardest to handle?
- What are some solutions to your problem that you could discuss with your dad or another adult?
- If you made a list of activities that you enjoy that you could do when you are feeling stressed or sad, what would be on the list?