(Closed) Have any other Encores/Wives gone through this?

posted 9 years ago in Encore
Post # 3
75 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: August 2009

First, I’d stop the jabs.  I know its hard sometimes, but take the high road!  Also, I would sit down with your husband and talk to him while the kids arent around.  He may not be able to stand up to his ex and confront her about what she’s saying, but he can certainly stand up to the kids and make sure they respect you when they are home with you and/or your husband.  I hope that helps! 

Post # 4
7052 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: July 2010

Well this is my take on the situation and here goes.

My ex also married his affair partner too.  And things are/were not rosy and hearts in flowers in their marriage.

He too, has begun acting wacky, saying all kinds of mean things about T now, even going nuts b/c T went with me to the parent/teacher conference.

It’s about control too imho.  They thought they were getting something else in the other person they cheated with, but after time moves forward, I think lots of the cheaters realize they had it pretty good before all the drama they caused and wish they could undo all the bad stuff they did.

My ex husband also doesn’t like the idea of me being attached to somebody.  I think all was fine in his little world when I was single.  When it was just me.  As if I was some sort of option for him (not!) and now I’ve changed things in his eyes. Truthfully I could care less, but I think it’s about two issues.  1)control and his loss of control over my life and 2)regret for doing all the stupid stuff and cheating, realizing that he had it way better than he does now.

And the ex is probably jealous too btw.  That’s why the kids are repeating what she has placed in their little impressionable heads. 


Post # 6
433 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: December 2009

I agree with bellenga – it’s totally about control, and to some extent, probably jealousy.  Using the kids as pawns in her little games is NOT cool.  I don’t know if there’s any possible way your ex could confront her about that.  (Or if you could both talk to her together).

My ex is very seriously dating my daughter’s “babysitter” now (she’s 27 and also my former best friend).  She had been watching my daughter for YEARS before they got together.  Anywho…  cue our wedding in 5 days (this Sunday), and all of a sudden he’s gotten a whacky again.  It’s like he had been distracted by her, but now realizes that I’m getting married again.  He actually suggested that he give our daughter something for her to wear (like jewelry or a hairpin) during our ceremony so that she could be reminded of her father during OUR ceremony.  I said, no, we have everything all picked out (and we’re giving her a gorgeous gold locket the day before) – why don’t you give her a picture of you and her to take with her that weekend instead?  I SO don’t want a “reminder” of him in all of our wedding pictures.  Sigh.

So yea, it sounds like control/jealousy and the best thing is to not react or react calmly to it (see, e.g., me offering another suggestion instead of just shooting my ex’s idea down entirely).  🙂


Post # 7
124 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: June 2010

I would recommend reading the Truth about Children and Divorce by Robert E. Emory PhD.  Its a really, really good book with almost 30 years of solid research.  What I like about it is that while it gives fantastic and accurate insight into the children from divorce families, it also provides insight into their parents behavior.  Plus he discusses different approaches to dealing with everyone involved.   As a mother of two who is approaching her second wedding this June, I have been using this book with unbelievable results when it comes to dealing with my kids and my ex, and it has given my Fiance the best tools of all.  The trauma that the ex is doing to her own sons is so sad and thankfully those boys will have you and their dad to help build their resilience to her unstable parenting.  Hope this helps.

Post # 8
1205 posts
Bumble bee

Oh honey…  I’m so sorry.  This has got to be so hard. 

I completely agree with Bellenga.  I think it is jealousy and control.  This may not be what you want to hear, but you really have to take the high road on this.  Children are smart.  They will take advantage of the gaps in parenting.  My suggestion is that you and your husband discuss things and make a plan.  Decide who will handle what, what the rules are etc.  Once all of the children are together, have a family meeting.  Explain that things may be different in other houses, but here, this is what’s expected.  If you and your husband present a united front, you’ll be much stronger. 

My son’s therapist used a great analogy for me:  Children are like bouncing balls…   When they have rules and expectations (think walls), they have something to bounce off of and it is safe for them to test their limits.  In a house with no rules, there are a lot of unknowns.  Rather than feeling free, they end up feeling unsure and unstable.  they need the walls to make them feel secure.  My X was also “unstable” and did lots of crazy things.  My kids hear me say a lot, that may be ok in dad’s house, but here, we _____.

Also – Every.single.time – a kid will defend the parent that is being criticized.  They feel like they have to – his kids love their mom, even if she is a loon.  When she acts crazy, you can say she made a poor choice and leave it at that.  The kids will pick up on your anger and frustration with her.  If you never have anything mean to say, they’ll pick up on that too.  In the end (and as they grow) they will remember integrity and unconditional love.  They’ll remeber feeling safe and not being drilled for info (something I assume his Ex does – mine does and their behavior seems similar)  Once the kids see that you and your husband’s main concern is them, they will relax more.  I would bet that his kids are pushing your buttons to see what you do.  They may feel put in the middle by their mom, but you guys can take that feeling away.  I cringe when my kids talk about thier dad, but I do my best to just nod and say uh-huh.  Otherwise – something bad might pop out. 

I just wrote a novel – holy cow!  LOL.  I hope things settle down for you guys.  I’m glad you have us to vent to…  Maybe you should pull up this thread… My vents about the X are there. 

Post # 9
1205 posts
Bumble bee

Longest reponse ever – but I wanted to add that you can’t change his Ex – you won’t be able to reason with her either. 

What you can change is how she effects your life and how you handle her.  There’s just no reasoning with unreasonable people.

Post # 11
183 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: September 2010

I’m so sorry to hear about that. It sounds like you’re in a really difficult situation.

And I know it’s hard to take the high road, but trust me, you will be glad you did in the long run. His ex is definately acting jealous (and what is that weirdness, when you left him, it’s like..”how dare he move on, he’s supposed to still be pining for me”) and while you do not have control over her “space” or her actions. You do have control over yours. And it’s time you stepped up and took it (back)

Be gentle but firm.

First, when they say ugly things about you.

1. Tell your stepson’s that when they say ugly things about you, it hurts your feelings. 

2. Tell them that you’re sorry they think you’re such a bad mother. But that you love your daughters and they shouldnt have to defend loving you. No more than they should have to defend their love for their mother.

Also you could tie any damage control into that by saying “I’m sorry I said *that* about your mom. My feelings were hurt/ I was frustrated and I didnt react well, and I apologize for that.  As the adult I should know better.

As far as her barging into your house..

1. Change the locks.

2. The next time she does it firmly tell her “I’m sorry Griselda, I know it’s difficult to remember, but this is not your home anymore, this is mine. If you continue to act as if you live here I will have to ask you not to come in anymore” You dont need to let your husband handle it. It is YOUR house now too.


Also, stop always deferring to their father to set them straight. (this is like asking someone else to gain respect for you) This is YOUR family now too. I’m pretty darn sure of you asked them how they would like it if someone treated their mother the way they treat you, they wouldn’t like it so much.

And lastly..and I am sorry if this is over the bounds of propriety. Your husband does need to lay down the law and tell them to stop being arses to you. Admit it, you resent that he allows them to talk to you that way, to clearly disrespect and goad you. In the end they are his children and there is only so much you can do or expect.

I suspect a simple “Guys it’s really disrespectful to talk to your stepmom like that.  I understand you love your mom. But I love (IA snowflake) and I would appreciate it if you didnt hurt her feelings anynmore because it hurts me” The next time they’re acting up should go a ways to helping them see the light.

Dont allow your husbands ex to chip away at your marriage. This is your family how and you have a responsibility to fight for it, and be happy!

Good luck I’m rooting for you 🙂

(edited to add.. I hope sincerely nothing I said offended you. You sound like a lovely lady in a bad situation and I’m just trying to offer a new approach) 🙂 

Post # 12
687 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: December 1969

I agree with everyone who said that it is about jealous and control. When I asked my ex-husband for a divorce, he literally flipped out although he had been unfaithful and constantly told me how much he hated being married to me. But, once I sought to get my own life back he lost it.

It’s unfortunate, however, that she is dragging the kids into it. I think that with the children you can redirect, but you can also practice the art of ignore. My son’s therapist suggested that for some of my son’s behavior. Like, if he’s talking about “mom is not going to play fair,” you respond with “that’s nice” and keep doing whatever you’re doing. When the child sees that it has no effect on you, they stop.

I imagine that over time she will settle down, but it’d be a good idea for you guys to set up clear (legal) boundaries now. You can limit the contact that she has with you guys, and even the contact that she has while the kids are there. You can (try) to limit what is said in front of the kids through Court Orders as well.

It’s such a horrible thing to have to deal with. I so feel your pain. Hugs!

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