Husband defends his kids

I have been a step mom for 10 years. One area that is driving my husband and I apart is that he defends his kids. A few weeks ago I was a talking to my stepdaughter and she responded with “whatever”.

The next day I calmly explained that it was rude and disrespectful and no matter what adult she’s speaking to she shouldn’t speak to them that way. She said she was sorry. I then added, next time maybe think before you speak. Later my husband ripped on me…that i didn’t accept her “apology”.

Our marriage has been plagued with him defending the kids. It doesn’t matter what I say or do, he’ll defend them. It has corrupted and hurt our relationship.

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Well, I don’t think the next time think before you speak comment was called for, but yes, you two need to be a united front. I agree that some couples counseling could really help.

This is a situation torn. A step parent does not have the emotional and mental attachment to the step children, usually. I am a parent. I have the attachment. My ex is a parent. He has the attachment also. My children’s step mother has children of her own. That is her focus and world. Mine are a third wheel to her when they go. But, their dad still wants to see them, in spite of the issues that occur because he spent too much time speaking to his daughter and not enough speaking to hers. Or your daughter is playing with my daughters toy. I only can evaluate the situation of my children appropriately. I know the details involved in it. Where yours is not offered when you posted. I can tell you that my daughter came home with a injured wrist and a story not too long ago. My ex told me no. Let me tell mom. He ushered her into the other room and he sat down to tell me that his wife yelled at her not to touch her daughters toys. She wasn’t she was playing with her own so she sat there playing. She grabbed my child’s arm and twisted it and started yelling. He grabbed her away from our daughter and threw her into the wall and yelled at her. I have also had my children tell me that she won’t clean and makes them clean and cook while there. She kicks my oldest J and or slaps her in the head. I confronted her after all this. I promised her if she touched my child again or spoke to her wrong…Well, I would react in the same manner or I will call the cops and I will press charges… It really depends on how much I cool down on the drive to her house… Maybe not the right approach, but they are my children. I am attached and I will protect them.

I’ve been there. Also married just shy of 10 years. My husband had sole custody of his two kids. I do not have any children. He subscribed to discipline stymies creativity and hinders self esteem. It started with eye rolling and whatever. I wasn’t permitted to correct my step daughter and he didn’t feel it was necessary - she wasn’t mean to him! It escalated into her stealing my credit cards (Tiffany feels bad because she doesn’t have a card of her own.) She did sneak out to be with a boy and I tried to take her phone (that I paid for). She said We’ll just see about that, bitch. Her dad gave it right back to her. She burned my clothes, tore up all of my baby pictures, and killed my pet bird. I left my husband for almost two years. He wanted to reconcile but I agreed to do so only if he went to counseling with me. The counselor told my husband that drinking impaired his ability to reason and he was parenting from a place of guilt. My husband had to attend rehab. Also, I needed for the stepdaughter to move out. She’s 19. The counselor agreed that would be best. With a sober husband and no kids in the house, our marriage is far better.Ask your husband to attend counseling with you. A neutral third party can have an impact that you don’t. He will tell your husband to step up and do the job. The kids don’t get to be abusive!

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I feel very fortunate as my husband has had to witness significant disrespect from his children toward me without justification. In spite of their unnecessary conduct I’ve remained kind, supportive and helpful. In that respect, and with their rude conduct, he’s had to witness the unnecessary targeting of me. Much of this is due to the mother’s covert aggressive manipulative measures but these kids are adults and know better. As such, he’s defended me which caused them to lash out. Their grandmother (mother’s side) felt her grandchildrens behavior was unruly and disrespectful also. When the ex wife’s mother defends the second wife… you know something is of concern. Sadly, these adult kids are estranged from us simply because they were asked to be respectful to someone who has always treated them well. Very unfortunate but I certainly will not downgrade my ethics or morals to please ungrateful human beings young or old as it does nothing more than enable poor behavior.

As such… I feel for you as no one regardless of family predicament should be disrespectful. And I disagree with another commenter here conveying that you should not have stated, ‘think before you speak next time …’. You had absolutely every right to state that comment as she deserved it whether it was from you, your husband, their mother or a third party.

I agree with your post. Nobody should have to “put up” with disrespect regardless of your place on the totem pole. I too deal with disrespect from my step daughter- and my DH makes excuses for her behaviour- and finds a way to blame me for it.

My husband does not defend me- he helps paint me in the villainous " wicked step mother role" but the truth is, I love my step daughter- and since I have children of my own- I parent her the same- I don’t believe she get special provisions because she is not from my body- and the same is true for my children towards my husband. I have his back- my kids are not rude or disrespectful of him.

We are a house divided on his daughters side- and I am at a loss. I love my husband- but I refuse to let this get further down the rabbit hole. She is 10…and it’s a situation in both homes- she targets her step parents, and both step parents are at the end of their ropes…I have a great relationship with her mom, and we communicate well. The problem is my husband, and the seemingly " us against the world" he and his daughter have. A blend of narcissism and entitlement. They both believe they are smarter, better and perfect. It isn’t their poor behaviour that is the problem- to them- it’s the way they are, and everyone should just accept it, and deal with it. Ugh


I’m so sorry you are enduring this type of behavior from both your husband and the step daughter. No one on either side should endure this. I’ve observed how my husband’s adult kids disrespect their father yet they respect their mother. The grandmother on the mother’s side stated that the only reason they remain respectful to their mother is that she over indulges and spoils them with the monthly alimony. Their father is just trying to instill respect and appreciation in these kids as their entitlement issues like that of their mother have navigated a dangerous path. I could never imagine treating my parents in this way. Your husband should be supportive of your methods of discipline and respect as it’s a positive not a negative. Not to mention they will be better for it in the future. I thank my parents everyday for their tough love and the humbleness they instilled in me.

My girlfriend let’s her children back chat and be rude to me when they do the wrong thing and then has a go at me for getting angry which makes me more angry and then says I have a problem.