Parenting Stepchildren/adult stepchildren

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Question
I have been re-married now for 2 years, together for 5.  He's an amazing man, but his children are just that children.  There ages range from 23 to 32 and they are so attached to their "daddy" it's pathetic.  We cannot even go away for 2 days, without phone calls and texting the entire time.  They call constantly, and even on a Saturday sometimes we will hear from the 32 year olds (twin sons) 4-5 times in a day.  OMG!!  When I bring it up, it rolls into an argument.  I have no idea how to deal with this?  They are use their father, they think we are a never ending piggy bank.  They never show any gratitude with anything you do for them, and frankly, I'm DONE!  I feel distant from my husband, because of his "children" which are grown adults.  I'm sick of it.  Please tell me how I can make "me" feel better, so I don't start to hate him and them!  

Thanks!!

Answer
Kelly

I hear a lot of frustration in what you are saying.  I am glad that you asked "Please tell me how I can make "me" feel better" because the responsibility for how you feel belongs to you.  Only you can make the choice on how you want to feel in any given situation.

My first question for you is why does this situation make you feel so frustrated?  Look at the results that this frustration is having for you..you argue with your husband, you feel distant from husband, you feel his children are still children so probably do and say things that distance them from you. And there are most likely many more frustrations. These are results of your current feeling.

Now what if you did not have these feelings?  How might your life be different? What would your relationship with your husband be like? Think about that for a moment. How would your life be different?

You have a choice and you can choose how you want to feel.   You can always look at things from both sides... there are always two sides.   You can look for the bad in a situation or you can look for the good...either way you will find what you are looking for.

I am not saying that the relationship that your husband has with his children is good or bad...it just IS.

It's what you focus on in the relationship that causes your feelings.  Right now you are focusing on how childish his children are, how they constantly ask for money.  That is your current focus... and it just so overwhelming that it is hard for you to see any of the positives.  

You have said your husband is an amazing man.  Is your marriage important enough to you to do what it takes to make it work?  All relationships take work.  Are you willing to the work to make the change?

Here is something you can do.  It is from "The Work" by Byron Katie.  She asks people to think about the situation that is bothering you and then ask 4 questions.

1. Is it true? (Yes or no. If no, move to 3.)
2. Can you absolutely know that it's true? (Yes or no.)
3. How do you react, what happens, when you believe that thought?
4. Who would you be without the thought?

She has a free website that you can go to that guides you through this process. I would highly recommend it for you.

http://thework.com/do-work
Once at the website find the spot just a little way down the page that says:

"Everything you need to do The Work is available for free on this website."

Click on the link "free on this website".  It is all free and I think will really help.

Please remember that this takes work and a commitment from you.

Rick  

Parenting Stepchildren

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Rick Olson

Expertise

As a stepparent of 4 children and a family coach, I can answer questions about the issues that arise in step-parenting including discipline,blended families, boundaries and guidelines.

Experience

I have 18 years as a stepfather, and over three years as a family coach focusing on unifying, strengthening and empowering families.

Publications
My wife and I have written 2 books on Family FUSE Your Family - Family: Unify Strengthen Empower! and Raising Families

Education/Credentials
BA(Recreation Administration) Grad Studies in Urban and Regional Planning and Design Certified as a LifeSuccess Consultant/Coach

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