Trying to explain how I feel is becoming increasingly harder. I feel like my life is one constant moan about my husbands ex wife, and not having the ability to just move on with it. I can't talk to my husband, as he feels unable to solve this. How far will it go before I reach the point of no return? How much more can my husband go before he reaches this point too?
He is constantly in the middle and is tired with all the conflict. I am tired too. It is frustrating when I make plans for the weekend to have them altered or changed because his ex wife has other ideas, but as usual I end up conforming just to keep the peace. I am a conformist so often feel I am at the end of the queue. I go along with decisions giving my husband the impression there is no need to discuss anything with me. I try to support my husband with all of this, trying to understand how he feels and I know he tries to support and understand me also. But when he says, " I'm tired of hearing this,” or “it's like a broken record," it does hurt me. If he is my best friend, like he says he is, how can he say these things to me when he knows it's such a problem for me? I would rather have him as the loving wonderful husband that he is, than a bad best friend! This is not part of the deal, the fantasy of a happy new life together!
Tragically, this is affecting the relationship between my stepdaughter and myself. His ex wife appears to have used their child and, the bond that we shared when I first came into her life, is now in ruins. For me, the complete change of character in my step daughter from ignorance, exclusion, and arrogant filthy looks that I endured for twenty six months, to her now hugging me, telling me she loves me and exclaiming that I am the best stepmother in the world, has left me suspicious and unable to show her any genuine feeling and affection at all. As I see it, all the emotional shit my husbands ex wife has shovelled in my direction via their child has left such a void it is now irretrievably reversible. Even the cuddle I receive when she first arrives, to me, is emotionless and has no genuine affection attached, in fact, there is no sincerity at all.
There still remain a few tell tale signs though. I bought a Fathers day card for my stepdaughter to sign. I took time choosing it, not wanting our daughters card to be more devoted to daddy than hers. When I suggested that she sign it, she responded that she had already made one at school so there was no need. Ok, fair enough but I felt these were not her own words, she had simply had repeated to me what she had been told or heard. Probably all in my head, but the suspicion is there.
My stepdaughter loves me to French Plait her hair; her mummy couldn't do them so she would ask me every weekend did I have time to braid her hair. She asked if she could shower before she left to go back to mummy’s house as if I plaited her hair then mummy would take it out to wash her hair. So by showering and having her hair washed at our end, would mean the plait would be able to stay in. A few Sunday’s later, she stopped asking for the shower and I didn’t want to press her for a reason.
I remember not long after my stepdaughter started school, I noticed on Saturday evening while she was staying she had Head Lice. Now these things come hand in hand when children start school and as every mother knows those of us with children of school age are our worst nightmare. My son caught them and he wore a crew cut so there was no escape for him either. You could see the little blighters wriggling around on his head! I was fanatical about my own daughter's hair as head lice can be so inconvenient with her long locks and it wasn’t long ago that I cleared the latest outbreak that had infested her school. They take ages to clear, and it is a tedious job removing them so obviously I was concerned that my stepdaughter's mummy made sure hers were clear before sending her over the following week. I was quite happy to start the process but thought it inappropriate and personal, apart from the embarrassment, so asked my husband to mention the situation to his ex wife when returning his daughter home.
The following week I noticed the tell-tale signs that the lice were still present, those little egg cases that look like tiny grains of sugar holding on for dear life to each hair strand. I asked my stepdaughter if her mummy had started her treatment to clear the head lice. She told me mummy had checked her hair once or twice so I replied, " you need to have your hair checked every night until they have gone." My step daughter was kneeling at the coffee table drawing and without turning to look at me said," well, you don't know what you are talking about do you?" I was so shocked at this remark I was speechless and just stood mouth opened. It became apparent that the way she said certain things were so grown up or blasé they were words spoken by an adult and reiterated by my stepdaughter. Comments she overheard her mummy or conversations she had been witness too regarding my parenting skills, were mocked or ridiculed by someone and my stepdaughter was repeating them to me without any awareness what she was saying.
The signs of her former behaviour towards me are apparent. The look has begun to appear again too. I asked her to put our young daughter onto the floor as she was sat with her poised unsupported on her lap and I was concerned that our daughter would fall backwards onto the floor. She did as she was asked, but immediately looked at her Daddy. You know the reaction when you tell a child who doesn’t belong to you to do or not to do something, they look at their parent as if, " do I really have to do this?" The frustrating thing for me is that I have requested she refrains from chasing her young sibling around and getting her all excited before bed-time, and all my husband can do was tell his daughter that I wasn't telling her off. No I wasn't but I didn't need the way I spoke to her explained.
Sunday 22nd Jan 2006
Had a door shut in my face again this morning and then when your daughter came downstairs, she just stood and stared at me. I asked her what was the face for and got silence. I told you that I thought I was out of flavour today and you said you didn’t think so and then seemed to brush the matter aside. There was no, "why do you think that?" Nothing. I'm just so unhappy with this situation now but stuck with it! I had no hello from her last night, just "are we baking?" so I said no. I seriously can’t be bothered when she is like this towards me. When you and I were cuddling in the kitchen she piped up that she wanted to sit by me for lunch. I looked at her and said I didn’t know why, as she hadn’t spoken to me all day. I'm sure she does it for your benefit or to make sure we don’t sit together. Roll on next week and yet another a lovely weekend spoilt no doubt