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Divorce/Separation Post Reply     Print Topic    
User Topic: Question about moving on when OW is very involved in kids' life
Kajem
♀ Member
Member # 36134
Default  Posted: 8:17 AM, August 10th (Saturday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Hoya, your OW sounds a lot like mine, although I did not know her before discovery.

She asserted herself at every kid event, parent committee, etc. I felt she was trying to replace me in my kids life.... With my x's blessing. My kids were clueless mostly when younger. My kids were 12,10,&8 at the time. I felt so beaten by these events. Events were a source of anxiety and about how will I get through instead of being about how proud I am of my kid. It sucked.

Once the oldest hit high school (about 3 years after D) I had enough. I vowed I would be there for my kids, put my anxiety on the back burner, and concentrate on my kids. It took a lot of fake it till you make it before the undercurrent changed to her being the one uncomfortable.
The side benefit was my kids relaxing and enjoying their events like they should have all along.

I hate that my kids became a pissing contest between ow/ NW and I - that is exactly what it felt like. If she hadn't overstepped her duties I would not be in the position to claim ownership.

In my situation OW/NW is crazy, wants everyone to think that my kids are hers. When faced with a choice to attend her kids activities or my kids (with me attending) she would choose my kid's event.

OW/NW ' s actions over the last 10 years have led me to believe that her actions are more about making me jealous, than about wanting to be a good stepmom to my kids.

I am presently 10 years from my divorce, last child graduated HS. OW/NW still drives by my house monthly.

I ignored her, THAT makes her crazy. For some reason she has this need to matter to ME. She is my XH's problem-coparenting with him was mine. She is irrelevant to me.

I feel for you. It is a royal pain dealing with crazy people.

Hugs,

K


I trust you is a better compliment than I love you, because you may not trust the person you love, but you can always love the person you trust. - Unknown
Relationships are like sharing a book, it doesn't work if you're not on the same page.

Posts: 5279 | Registered: Jul 2012 | From: Florida
hoya96
♀ Member
Member # 28851
Default  Posted: 10:03 AM, August 10th (Saturday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

tryingagain74 - thank you for that blog link. I love the cut direct; it IS how I currently act around OW - I can be standing 5 feet from her (and am put in that situation on a regular basis) and it's like she's a ghost. Do not make eye contact. Do not hear words coming out of her mouth. Do not see that there is someone in that physical space. But it was so interesting to read that it was a "formal" Victorian practice!

In my situation OW/NW is crazy, wants everyone to think that my kids are hers. When faced with a choice to attend her kids activities or my kids (with me attending) she would choose my kid's event.

Karem - I could relate to almost every word in your post, but this particularly hit home, since this has happened. You would think with her own 3 children, she would be too busy to be so involved with my kids, but she values "being there" for my kids above her own.

I know it is about me. And everything you wrote struck home. I truly hope that I get to a place where I see it as laughable - it was helpful to read your post because that was exactly my purpose in posting about this...to hear from others who have dealt with this and know I *can* get through this.

Thank you.


Me: 40 and fabulous!
3 children ages 10, 12 and 14
Ex said he wanted separation 2/14/10
DDay #1: 5/23/10 18 month affair with his 22 yr old paralegal
DDay #2 9/22/10 my best friend, now his wife
Divorced: 12/10/10
Re-married a wonderful man.

Posts: 329 | Registered: Jun 2010
anewday78
♂ Member
Member # 39357
Default  Posted: 7:28 PM, August 14th (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Hoya96, I've followed your story for a while because the characters, particularly your exH and ex BFF, really stand out to me as certifiable sociopaths.
My husband and I have talked about pulling the kids out of our school and putting them in public for my sanity - but I don't want their education to suffer because of this woman.

You realize this is EXACTLY what she wants you to do, right? It burns her up inside that your children go to such a prestigious school and are being provided with a top-notch education while her children are not. Add to that the fact that mom is in the same building as the kids each day taking such an active role in their lives and you have a situation that drives wifestress CRAZY. You see, based on your descriptions of her, she is "covetous psychopath" (where "psychopath" actually refers to sociopath). She cannot completely possess the people, qualities and/or things that you possess, despite her best efforts, so instead, she is hell-bent on tearing them down/reducing them to nothing so she no longer has to deal with the internal struggles over the fact that she can not possess those things.
DO NOT let her get away with that! The next time you see her at that school, know that it's because it drives HER crazy that both YOU and YOUR CHILDREN are there everyday.

Posts: 350 | Registered: May 2013
anewday78
♂ Member
Member # 39357
Default  Posted: 8:03 PM, August 14th (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Also, make no mistake - the fact that you've moved on to a happy, healthy new life drives your ex H crazy. You were supposed to crumble and never recover after he left you for your bff. The fact that your current husband also works at the school and therefore all of you (you, your H, and the kids) live and work in such close proximity threatens to make him (and by proxy, her) irrelevant. How can he stand for that when you're supposed to be the irrelevant one!? What better a way to deconstruct such a quaint and cozy arrangement than to send in what he knows to be your biggest trigger (her)!?
Keep doing what you're doing and know that it makes them itch a hell of a lot more than it's making you itch... it's just a matter of stepping back, outside of your situation, and seeing it and all of the players involved for what and who they are.

Posts: 350 | Registered: May 2013
hoya96
♀ Member
Member # 28851
Default  Posted: 9:37 PM, August 14th (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Thank you anewday78. It's interesting you say that because my IC, the school counselor, and my (former - I'm off all meds now) psychiatrist that helped me with my PTSD in 2010 all described her behavior as that of a sociopath.


Me: 40 and fabulous!
3 children ages 10, 12 and 14
Ex said he wanted separation 2/14/10
DDay #1: 5/23/10 18 month affair with his 22 yr old paralegal
DDay #2 9/22/10 my best friend, now his wife
Divorced: 12/10/10
Re-married a wonderful man.

Posts: 329 | Registered: Jun 2010
myperfectlife
♀ Member
Member # 39801
Default  Posted: 9:50 PM, August 14th (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Scanning over this thread I just have one main comment.
She sounds very insecure. Obviously since she was your friend she knows how awesome of a mom you are and she knows what she's up against. She's just pathetically trying her best to amount to what you already are.
You've also shown your strength and survivability by remarrying an amazing, caring man without resorting to stealing him from your BFF.
She knows she will never measure up to you, but she's doing what she can to convince HERSELF that she can.
( I guess I don't see it as her trying to prove anything to you, but only trying to prove to herself and maybe XH that she really is just as good as you. Sad really.)
I know this could be unbearably difficult, but have you thought about killing her with kindness?

Just a thought...


I cannot be responsible for another's personal growth.
DDay#1 of a "cheatillion" 4/1/13
Divorce final 11/04/13

Posts: 452 | Registered: Jul 2013
anewday78
♂ Member
Member # 39357
Default  Posted: 11:15 PM, August 14th (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

It's interesting you say that because my IC, the school counselor, and my (former - I'm off all meds now) psychiatrist that helped me with my PTSD in 2010 all described her behavior as that of a sociopath.

I'm sure your therapist recommended the coping strategies you employ for that very reason. The best defense against a sociopath is an emotionless, non-reaction. Do NOT allow her to manipulate you into making concessions (i.e. pulling your kids out of your prestigious school). She's a sad, sorry joke and everybody who matters to you (including your children) know it.
Check out this excerpt from a really great book on the subject, The Sociopath Next Door: http://familypsc.blogspot.com/2008/11/covetous-sociopath.html?m=1

Posts: 350 | Registered: May 2013
Kajem
♀ Member
Member # 36134
Default  Posted: 3:32 AM, August 15th (Thursday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Hoya, the only thing I would change is talking to your XH about it. He most likely tells her that it bothers you and that fuels her feelings of mattering . Even sociopaths have a need to matter. Your XH replaced you with her-if she can't measure up to your standards? What's to stop him from replacing her with an improved version of you!

Ignore her .... The longer she feels invisible to you. The quicker she will do something outrageous for attention. Then your school will have the information the need to ban her.

Give her enough rope to hang herself, then stand back and watch the self destruction begin.

Don't forget to pass the popcorn

Hugs,
K


I trust you is a better compliment than I love you, because you may not trust the person you love, but you can always love the person you trust. - Unknown
Relationships are like sharing a book, it doesn't work if you're not on the same page.

Posts: 5279 | Registered: Jul 2012 | From: Florida
anewday78
♂ Member
Member # 39357
Default  Posted: 9:34 AM, August 15th (Thursday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I suspect her involvement will dwindle to an all-time low as soon as your children reach the teenage years and can manage their own relationships with their father and step-mother. My guess is that they will be more than eager to express their disapproval of their step-mother. At that point THEY will make her feel uncomfortable at events and she will no longer want to participate. Furthermore, their father will not be able to accuse you of parental alienation at that point because he will have to answer to his children for any hassles he visits upon you.
I don't usually encourage bad-mouthing another parent/step-parent; however, in your case I think it's important that you inform your children on who they're dealing with when it comes to their father and step-mother. Now is not the right time for that though. You'll know when it's the right time and that is when the kids (who most likely suspect it now) will completely see the light. They won't want anything to do with either of them.

Posts: 350 | Registered: May 2013
chikastuff
♀ Member
Member # 35288
Default  Posted: 9:41 AM, August 15th (Thursday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I think the fact that she knows you don't want her there makes her feel relevant and important. She feeds off of your discomfort. I'm willing to bet if you acted buddy buddy and acknowledged her some of the fun will wear off and she'll disappear. I know you don't want to do this, and it's going to be super tough, but this is where you fake it 'til you make it (or she goes away).


Me- 32
Happily engaged and moving on

Posts: 382 | Registered: Apr 2012 | From: New England
anewday78
♂ Member
Member # 39357
Default  Posted: 4:07 PM, August 15th (Thursday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I'm not sure I agree with this:
I'm willing to bet if you acted buddy buddy and acknowledged her some of the fun will wear off and she'll disappear.
I honestly think you've been handling this the best way possible. When you're dealing with a sociopath, the best thing to do is STAY AWAY. She has you targeted. Remain disengaged. The less she knows about you the better. The more she knows about you and the closer you reel her in, the more and more dangerous she becomes. As the children get a little older, THEY will drive her away - and I don't think you'll have to wait another 9 years for that to happen because your oldest son is already showing signs of resentment towards her. I'd say you have about two more years of this BS before your oldest son begins to express his disdain for his step-mother more freely to her and your ex H. That's when the shit hits the fan FOR THEM. You see, the funny thing about younger siblings is they take cues from their older siblings. The moment your oldest begins to push step-mom away, the two younger children will almost immediately catch on and follow his lead. The beauty of this for you is that THEY will let her know she is not wanted and she can't argue much with that. At this point, your ex H will most likely start playing the parental alienation card but you wont have to worry much about that because it wont actually be YOU that's alienating the younger ones - siblings talk/stick together.

[This message edited by anewday78 at 4:09 PM, August 15th (Thursday)]


Posts: 350 | Registered: May 2013
hoya96
♀ Member
Member # 28851
Default  Posted: 7:45 PM, August 15th (Thursday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

She sounds very insecure. Obviously since she was your friend she knows how awesome of a mom you are and she knows what she's up against. She's just pathetically trying her best to amount to what you already are.

myperfectlife - several of my girlfriends who know her well (there was a group of us, 6, that were all best friends. They all stopped speaking to her as soon as the affair was disclosed) say the same thing. They say to take it as a "compliment" because I was the only one worth trying to "beat".

anewday78 - I have the sociopath next door. Chilling how close to home it is.

Hoya, the only thing I would change is talking to your XH about it. He most likely tells her that it bothers you and that fuels her feelings of mattering .

Kajem - I do not speak to XH about anything except finances/scheduling. I tried to discuss this a year ago when my younger 2 first came to my school and she (having just married him) starting showing up on campus, but was told to "get over it, she is a parent to our kids and will be involved in their education". I realized then how useless it was, and how truly disordered his thinking is, and haven't engaged since.

My husband and I gather support at the school and rely on our colleagues, but don't ever engage with XH or OW about it.

Regarding how to deal with her - all the professional advice I've sought about this (most notably my IC who began working with me back in 2010 for my 1st Dday) say absolutely do NOT engage. Ever. She feeds off my anguish. I have not spoken to her since the day I found out about the affair and plan to never, ever speak. to her. Even if she's at my children's weddings, grand kids' birthdays, whatever. I will never acknowledge her.

Thank you SO much for all the support. It is so helpful to be heard and validated.


Me: 40 and fabulous!
3 children ages 10, 12 and 14
Ex said he wanted separation 2/14/10
DDay #1: 5/23/10 18 month affair with his 22 yr old paralegal
DDay #2 9/22/10 my best friend, now his wife
Divorced: 12/10/10
Re-married a wonderful man.

Posts: 329 | Registered: Jun 2010
Topic Posts: 32
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