Step Son having party

sam1234

I am 37 and my ss is 19. I came home last weekend to find him with about 10-15 friends over. I consider this a party. It was 12 a.m. and I was NOT expecting to find this when I got home. When I questioned my husband, he said that HE had told my ss to come over since we would not be at home. (without consulting me or even mentioning it to me at all). I was suppose to be away for the night at my parents and my husband was visiting his parents. I talked to my husband about reprimanding him for having so many people over without our consent but he said that it was HIS house too and felt like his son should be able to do what he wanted here. The ss lives with his mom 99.99% of the time( about 5 miles away ). Any suggestions or ideas how I can get my husband to see why I was upset and why I felt so disrespected?

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theotherside

Why are you upset with the son if his father said he could be there and that his son should be able to do what he wanted there?

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colleen777

Rightly so you feel that your status in your own home has been violated. And it has been. Husband made a decision without even consulting you.

Your husband is still operating on the previous history of the family. He doesn't feel any discomfort because his status isn't being stepped on, but yours is being seriously violated.

Your husband must make a significant change to allow the stepfamily to become a functional unit. He must move out of the middle and consciously onto your side as his wife.

It appears that your husband is more concerned about feeling he is abandoning his son and wants to be seen as a good guy and even trying to hide it. But your husband needs to allow you to move into your rightful status as his equal partner and head of the family and stop putting SS's wishes ahead of your needs.

The children need to see and be in the presence of a healthy couple relationship even if they say they don't like it.

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theotherside

Were they drinking, smoking marijuana, and trashing the house? Or were there just 10-15 kids hanging out there?

What needs? Why should he not put his son's wishes ahead of his wife's wishes?

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kkny

What should be the answer -- that if son wants to have friends over it has to be at mom's? Why should Mom have to handle all this? By consult -- do you mean give a head's up (common courtesy) or discuss and agree on? Teenagers arent easy, but it is not fair that he spends 99% of time at mom"s

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colleen777

Ok everyone let's all go over to TOS's house and have a big ass party tonight. Oh awfully too bad TOS didn't know we were coming. Don't worry TOS we aren't gonna like smoke pot or trash your house or anything. Well at least we hope we aren't.

What, you didn't know about the party? Oh stop being such an uptight old bag. It is just your stupid house.

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kkny

Colleen

Which one of TOSs children are you friends with?

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colleen777

Why Randy of course!

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theotherside

The point is that it is ok with his FATHER. If it is ok with his father, and they are not destroying the house or doing anything illegal, I don't see a problem. It might have been nice for the father to have mentioned it to his wife, but I don't see that the son did anything wrong.

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sieryn

The SS is 19!!! At that point he is no longer a child and has no business having a ton of people over to his fathers home, why doesn't he have his own place? He's an adult.

"Why should he not put his son's wishes ahead of his wife's wishes?"

HE IS AN ADULT NOT A CHILD and its her home too. Jezus TOS......

I agree with Colleen :)

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imamommy

kkny, I'd be inclined to agree with you if dad were home and supervising. Obviously, the boys mom isn't going to allow it in her house and dad is letting him do what he wants so he'll be the cool dad or get on his son's good side. At 19, there is the possibility of drinking, drugs, sex, and stealing that could happen when they are in someone else's house and no adult supervision. I have two boys 18 & 21. They are not allowed to have a group of friends over at midnight, even if I'm home. Definitely not happening if I'm gone.

It shows a total lack of respect for his wife, if he gives permission for his child, that doesn't even live with them, to bring strangers into their home while both are out of town. Perhaps the dad isn't even considering everything that could go wrong, and he would have liability. Perhaps there is underage drinking... could they have gotten alcohol from dad's liquor cabinet? what if one of them crashed on the way home while drunk from dad's liquor? or even being drunk because dad provided a location for them to drink? What about statutory or even date rape... there might be some liability if someone is assaulted and injured on his property.. would that be covered under his homeowners policy? What if there were drugs, even if they were not being consumed? Imagine someone calls the cops for noise and they find drugs in the house? Would it be subject to seizure under the laws in your state? and what about if a fight breaks out? Someone could get hurt, property gets broken, again, the cops show up. and what happens when you can't find that antique family heirloom? or something valuable can't be found? Did someone take it? Who? and then you go into your room and find your bed has been used. I don't know about anyone else, but that's a violation, in my opinion. YUCK!!!

Call me a party pooper or stick in the mud, but as a parent, isn't it our job to think of all the things that can go wrong? Not say, 'boys will be boys... they should be able to do whatever they want' Why? because you feel guilty for not being a parent? because you don't see him 99% of the time? because you want him to like you?

I don't really see it as an issue because OP is the step parent. It's an issue of poor parenting by the dad and the dad's lack of respect for his wife. Don't forget, it's HER house too. Maybe next time he wants to watch a football game or take a nap on Sunday afternoon, you'll invite a house full of ladies over to have a tupperware party.... and he can just 'deal with it'. (and I'm not really suggesting you do that because that would cause a problem for sure. I'm just saying that you have every right to feel disrespected because that's what he did)

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sylviatexas1

"Why should he not put his son's wishes ahead of his wife's wishes?"

duh...

because he's married to his wife?

This is her *home*, she's a partner & a co-owner, not a roommate with benefits.

If it were a crisis situation ("the bus crashed & all my friends are bleeding & the hospital's full"), that would be one thing.

but casually allowing his son (or anybody, for that matter) to have 10 to 15 friends over at midnight & not only not checking with wife but not even mentioning it is not right.

I my own self am skeptical that you can "make someone see" that their behavior is wrong, or hurtful, or offensive.

Their best bet is to deny it, say you're too sensitive, or that since no harm was intended that you're wrong for being offended, or say you're crazy, or make a counter-attack & accuse you of being a hateful person who just doesn't want the stepson around & who wants to control the transgressor.

so if talking is going to be a waste of time, breath, & blood pressure medicine, maybe the thing to do is take action.

(I've always thought that women believe words & men believe actions anyway.)

Giving someone permission to use the house as though it belongs to him/them should put some unwelcome consequences on hubs's shoulders.

Any time you & hubs plan on being away from the house overnight, ask the police to check the house, ask the neighbors to keep an eye on it, & be sure to tell hubs that you have done so.

If he's told son to enjoy the place, *he* can notify police & neighbors who's supposed to be over there.

(not my best suggestion ever, but it's all that occurs to me at the moment.)

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kkny

"but casually allowing his son (or anybody, for that matter) to have 10 to 15 friends over at midnight & not only not checking with wife but not even mentioning it is not right."

I agree he should have given wife a heads up, but I think there is a difference of opinion here as to whether Dad has to get SMs permission for son to have friends over. I think this is a difficult situation, and would strongly recommend people discuss before marriage.

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sieryn

You know, even if this wasn't a 'step' situation I would be pissed in her position. If any of my DS had 15 people in my house at midnight and I didn't know I would be furious...

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imamommy

"I agree he should have given wife a heads up, but I think there is a difference of opinion here as to whether Dad has to get SMs permission for son to have friends over"

A heads up? It's HER house!!! His son doesn't even live there. I might see his point if the son lived there but he DOES have to get her permission. Who would think of discussing (before marriage) whether a grown child that doesn't live with you should or shouldn't be allowed to throw a party when you are both out of town?

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theotherside

I would have trusted my son to have had an unsupervised party at 19 - there is no way you could fit 10-15 guests in my house, though. Not all 19 year olds drink or do drugs.

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tamar_422

So, would SM need to have Dad's permission to allow strangers to them be in their home at midnight? Either way, I would think it's a matter of common courtesy, and not step related.

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theotherside

Strangers all by themselves or her 19 year old child's friends? No, she shouldn't need to have her husband's permission either for her child to have friends over.

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tamar_422

TOS, generally I would agree that both parents' permission would not be needed for a child to have friends over.

But we are talking about a situation where the child lives with the mom 99% of the time, and dad and stepmom were planning to be out of town over night. The boy was clearly having a party with 10-15 friends, a party he couldn't have over at his mom's house, the kind of party 19 year old boys have when there is no adult supervision present.

Come on. How obtuse are you if you don't get that? And dad gave permission for the boy to have a party, but failed to mention it to his wife? Even dad knew it was wrong.

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sam1234

Wow! I really didn't expect to see so many replies so soon, but i'm really glad that I did. I have no problem with him having friends over - if I am consulted first, yes common courtesy, or just a heads up. If it were my child, I WOULD be furious. My husband said, well, what if I come home and find your son doing that. I said well I WILL BE THE FIRST ONE TO PUT HIM IN HIS PLACE. AND I FULLY EXPECT IT SOMEDAY (MINE IS 8). As to the ss not being here 99% of the time, he comes and goes as he pleases. He has a part time job and goes to college part time so I do not expect him to be living on his own as long as he's in school. BUT, I do not appreciate being made to feel like I AM THE BAD GUY IN MY OWN HOME. TOS, you said, what's the big deal, it's JUST a house??? Well, you're right, it IS just a house, BUT it's a brand new house that we have just built and will be paying on it for the next 30 years and I really want it to last that long. I appreciate being able to provide a home for our children. You're right, not all 19 year olds do drugs and drink but he has already lost his license once for wrecking while under the influence and then he also got a ticket for trying to purchase alcohol.
kkny- I am glad you mentioned the date rape thing. I hadn't even thought about that!!!!
Colleen you're right, he does worry about neglecting or abandoning his son(s) more than anything in the world. We have been married for 4 years and almost every night, he calls the boys (he also has a 12 year old son) to BEG them to come over. I don't like it for my ex-husband to be a "Disney World Dad" and I don't want my husband to be one either, but i'm afraid he is. Just wants to do the fun stuff and not the disciplining.

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justnotmartha

The Disneyland Dad problem is a big one, and it's potentially an illegal one when you pair a 19 year old with a history of poor choices and judgment relating to alcohol with an empty home and no supervision.

TOS, if your kids never gave you one reason to believe having them alone overnight with 10-15 friends would cause a problem then this wouldn't be an issue. You are also the sole person responsible for that house and able to make that call on your own.

OP and her husband presumably hold joint tenancy and share in the expenses of the home. This gives them both the same amount of input as to what happens under the roof regardless of who's kid is who's. A 19 year old with a drinking history being left alone is something both adults must agree to. What if OP had left valuables out believing the house would be empty? (please, don't go off on an argumentative tangent about home invasion) What if, as mentioned, something happened in their home and under their liability? Before taking that kind of risk don't you discuss it?

This has NOTHING to do with step families. This has everything to do with making a poor, disrespectful choice. DH needs to see the consequences this could have had that would have effected the both of them, even if he can't understand the mistake he made in making this call alone.

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kkny

Tamar,

What I resent, as the mom who has teh DD 99% of the time, is why is it all on me? And just because mom shoulder most of it, does that give Dads SO the right to say, oh SD is at moms most of the time, so we dont have to do anything. I agree Dad should have told his wife, but it seems to me that Dad isnt doing his share. I think most 19 year olds live with a parent or are at college. Maybe Dad thought 19 yr old was responsible and he would rather have noise etc whenhe wasnt there. It seems to me a situation where SM thinks becasue mom has primary custody, some here think Dad should do nothing. That isnt right. I agree Dad should have told SM, but the fact that the son spends most of his time at his moms doesnt meen Dad should do nothing.

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sam1234

kkny: I have MY son 99.99% of the time as well. My ex does very little for him so I see what you're saying, the dad should take part in the child's life. But my husband and I do support his kids and take part in their lives. We have "RUN" with them for years. (until the SS got his license) and we still take a very large part in my 12 year old SS's life. We have him alot. It's just that the 19 year old stays with his mom most of the time now b/c he has "aged out" of the system where he doesn't have to come up.

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cawfecup

He's 19 knew the house would be empty ... dad's just covering his own a$$ with his wife telling her he knew about it .... doesn't want her to be whatever with the kid so he's covering for his son. "I knew about it what's the big deal" ... I am sure the 19 yr old said .. .hey dad while you and your wife are away this weekend I am going to have 10-15 people over ok ... and dad said "sure son that will be fine".

Doesn't matter where he lives most of the time or not its a cover up.

No adult in their right mind would authorize a party for 10-15 teenagers in their home while they were going to be away.

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theotherside

I thought children were "supposed" to be told that they had two homes, not that they were merely visitors at one of them - no matter how little time they spent there.

If the boy couldn't be trusted not to drink, then maybe the father shouldn't have given him permission to have his friends over - although if he is in college, he probably spends plenty of time at unsupervised activities with his friends. I just don't see how this is in any way the boy's fault - what was he supposed to say, "I know it's ok with you, Dad,, but be sure you ask your wife for permission?" When I was married, if I gave my kids permission to do something, it wasn't their job to verify that I had their father's agreement.

I am also bothered by the fact that everyone seems to assume all 19 year olds drink. Apparently this one does, but that is not universally true by any means. My son doesn't drink even now, although it is perfectly legal for him to do so. When he attended an engagement party for some friends (who were over 21), he wasn't embarrassed to call me to pick him up when it was over.

Our family has had parties and weddings where no alcohol was served. No guest has ever complained. There are a lot of people out there who don't drink, and they are not all recovering alcoholics, LDS, or Mennonites.

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theotherside

I wouldn't have a problem with it when my kids were 19. At 15, I would have a problem with it.
Even at 19, I would trust my kids to raise the younger ones if I died. I would trust them with my life, my house, my car, my credit cards, and my ATM password. They have never given me any reason not to trust them with any of those things.
Peer pressure has never been a big factor in their lives.

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cawfecup

Well aren't your children wonderful.... but in reality even if your child is not doing "anything wrong" ...how can you be sure all of their friends are as wonderful as your child ... oh yeah they make good choices in friends ... well "what if" one of their friends invite some dude she just met 2 days ago to the party and he just happens to make himself welcome to anything in your home.... cars, cash, jewelry, cough syrup, redi whip can, glue, butane filler, the young pretty thing in the corner ... then there are the false accusations.. he did______ at so and so's house the 19 yr old who was hosting the party would be the one in trouble.

I still say the dad was covering up for the whole mess ... how can SM be _____ at son if dad approved of it...

Even sober people make stupid choices.

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theotherside

Yes, I do think my children are wonderful. Not perfect, but wonderful. Don't you think yours is?

Actually I have no cash, jewelry, cough syrup, redi whip (I would use the one from Vermont, anyway, to support local agriculture), glue (I suppose the squeeze bottle doesn't count), butane, liquor cabinet). My kids have never attended a party that got out of hand, so I have to assume that my kids' friends are also reasonably responsible. My son and his friends (both male and female) are much more likely to stay up all night playing World of Warcraft than they are to invite someone they don't know to a party.

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serenity_now_2007

I see major discrepancy among/between many of the above posts: is a 19-year-old a child who requires "supervision", or is he an adult who "has no business" being at his parent's house with some friends of his? Granted, the ages between 18 and 21 (generally college-age) are iffy to define, b/c while certain laws define 18 as "adult" (voting, no more CS, high school graduate), we all know our society does not engender a situation where a 19-year-old can be expected to be a fully, 100% independent adult. And it certainly can't be had both ways where on the one hand he's expected to handle everything on his own and stay way the hell away from any encroachment upon his parents' lives, and on the other hand he needs to be babysat if he steps foot in the door.

As for reasons why he was over there... well, I don't know the guy, and he very well could be inclined to wreck the place, rob it blind or gang-rape a bunch of innocent girls right there in the living room... But it could also be that Dad's house was a more convenient location for everyone to meet that night... or maybe Mom wanted a break from the festivities for just ONE time... or maybe SS is very proud of how cool his Dad is, or Dad has the better tv for watching the game... Could be many, perfectly innocent no-big-deal reasons besides just the sinister ones feared.

The "heads up" vs. "permission" issue raised by kkny is a central question here, so she's right to focus on that as a crux of the issue. The debate seems to force a choice, as so many of these debates do, as to who is "more important" (SM, SS or DH) or has more power in the house. The power to grant (or deny) permission being, of course, the question at hand. I personally would agree that it would have been nice if DH gave you the *heads-up*, as common courtesy. But I don't think either of you need each other's *permission* to have various people over (be they friends, parents, neighbors, delivery people, kids, or kids' friends... all of whom *could* conceivably pose a threat of some sort). Let alone the fact that when you have kids (or marry into a situation with kids) you can expect some occasional upsets to your privacy and routine... when you marry or LIVE WITH ANYONE you can expect that! It just isn't convenient to have to clear it each & every time. I guess this concept kind of ties in with Sylviatexas's recent thread about "sometimes you just have to do something without asking for permission" b/c if you wait to ask it'll become a huge pain in the rear.

I say people living together shouldn't have to get "permission" every time, but this is pre-supposing a situation where all parties have roughly similar levels of extroversion and social/family bonding needs. If one person in the partnership has a significantly greater need for privacy and territoriality than the other, it points to personality differences between them that should be worked around between them. Surely compromises and agreements can be established that will function adequately in most situations.

What was the extent of the damages to the house after the party?

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justnotmartha

TOS my dear, not every situation can have your children inserted into it. OP is giving us the facts about HER situation. We are discussing if HER DH should have allowed this to happen, or covered it up after it did. We aren't debating if YOUR kids could/should be trusted. It is great that you can trust them but that knowledge isn't helping Sam1234 at all. Rather than tangent off about what you let your kids do lets put the spotlight back where it belongs - on OP and her situation.

This kid does have a past of drinking - we are not making assumptions about any other child. Even if no other kid there drank he could still do something stupid/hurtful which would have serious ramifications. It is still illegal for him to be drinking. Sure - he may do it at school every day but that is not under OP's roof and under OP's liability.

I do feel that SS needs to feel like it is his house and he is always welcome regardless of how much time he spends where, but that does NOT mean he gets free rein to do whatever he wants. My sons have no other home, yet they are not allowed to do anything they choose in this one. There is a difference in feeling at home and taking advantage of. I think OP was trying to make the point that her SS wouldn't do this at his mom's house where he lives most of the time, so why does he think he can get away with it at his dad's? The answer - because dad has shown him that poor choices and illegal actions have no consequence at that house. Talk about a Magic Kingdom!

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sam1234

Serenity: There was no damage at all to my house, NONE whatsoever. I didn't expect there would be. I actually like his friends (the ones that I know). His girlfriend, I don't care too much about but that's beside the point. As far as getting or giving permission, if my son knew that he would want to have several friends over, I would definitely discuss it with my husband. I always do, even if not convenient. I just respect him that much and I would only expect the same from him.

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finedreams

syerin says: "The SS is 19!!! At that point he is no longer a child and has no business having a ton of people over to his fathers home, why doesn't he have his own place? He's an adult."

what????Why does he have to have his own place? DD was still finishing high school when she was 19. was she supposed to move out of mom's house? lots of kids also stay at home while going to college. it is normal.

i agree that 10-15 people in the house without previous concent of both spouses is not a good idea. I didn't allow DD bringing large groups of people in my absence. On the other hand SS lives with his mom, so if he comes to dads less than 1 percent of the time, it is unfair.

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mom_of_4

Your DH absolutely should have consulted you first before saying Sure son come over while we are away and have a party. You are his wife and partner and more so it is YOUR house too and any and all decisions as to what is going on in your house should be run by you first. Although, I agree with cawfe that dad more than likely had no clue that there was going to be a party and was simply covering up. But, even not knowing that there was a party should have said hey honey ds will be staying at the house this weekend. I just wanted to let you know...that way if there was a conflict of interest or something that would have given you the opportunity to say... "Well, I dont feel comfortable with him being at home alone or okay great good to know"

And further more... it is not ss house. It is his home sweet home that he will always have but it is your and your husbands house and you two alone have the right to do whatever you want in the house... not the children grown or not. Even if he lived there 99.99% of the time he still would not have the right to any old decision he wanted and do whatever he wanted to.

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serenity_now_2007

Why don't we, for the sake of argument, remove the stepson from the equation for a minute. What if it was DH & 10-15 of his friends that OP came home to? Or what if DH had 10-15 friends over while OP was out of town? Would there be any differences in reactions, expectations, or not? Discuss.

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mom_of_4

Absolutely not. Dh should still make sure that he says hey hun I am going to have a bunch of friends over at such and such time. And thus open the conversation lines of Well I dont really feel comfortable with this because or Okay great I am not going to be here anyways make sure you clean up.

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kkny

I think Dad should have told SM, but shouldnt have to get her permission.

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mom_of_4

So, in your opinion it doesnt really matter what the wife and woman of the house thinks or wants because well I dont really know why you would think that.

For Example:

"Hun ds is going to stay the night at our house while we are both out of town"
"Okay... umm I don't really feel comfortable with that he hasnt had a very good track record of making good decisions and if anything happend we could be held responsible"
"Well, too bad it is his house so that is what is going to happen"

I can assure you that if that happened in my home ... the person that would be looking for a place to stay would be my DH.

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finedreams

My responce to serenity now:
If DH is out of town and wife has friends coming over, it is perfectly fine unless of course she does somehting inappropriate with those friends. ha And vice versa if wife is out of town. Nobody needs to ask a permission to have friends over. IMHO

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mom2emall

The whole situation seems fishy to me! SS had a party, DH is covering up the fact that it could have been dangerous! Maybe 5 friends sitting around playing a videogame would have been fine....but 10-15 is considered a party!

I would not let a bunch of teenagers I do not know stay in my home while no "adult" was there for the night. The home is owned by 2 people and both should consent to a party in the home. Not a stepfamily issue...just an issue of respect.

SS and dad were wrong! It was irresponsible of dh to let ss have all those people over (if her really did know about it). The liability could be major if something happened.

Not all teenagers drink or do drugs, but many do and I would not take the chance that 15 don't.

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serenity_now_2007

Yes, we must keep clarifying that the central question here is not whether OP should be *informed* but whether her *permission* is required before gathering takes place. Because the power to grant permission is just as much the power to deny permission, so it's also veto power.

I guess the crucial question for OP to consider from all angles would be: what if DH asked you for permission to allow some guys over to watch the game, or to have his son stay for a while, and you said no? Would you then be upset if you asked him for permission for your mother, sister or friend to come over (or to stay a while) and he refused?

My point in asking is that just like there are some dangers with being too "anything goes", we should be careful with this "must always get permission" thing, too. An easy recipe for power struggles and tit-for-tat if someones feeling slighted or controlled. There should be some larger, general agreements made so that permission doesn't have to be granted (or denied) each & every time. Statements by both partners along the lines of: "It's just that one friend of yours, Lounge Lizard Larry [or Hot-Pants Carrie], that I don't want over here unless I'm present"; "Your brother can stay here for as long as he likes as long as he contributes to the household"; "Your son can have friends over as long as he completely cleans up after the party and agrees to pay for any damages that may occur"; "We will always try to find workable arrangements to have guests over (i.e. advance notice, setting up guest room, etc.), but if that is ever impossible, we will alternate veto power over who gets to visit. You veto'ed my mom last time, this time I veto your sister." Etc., etc.

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imamommy

Serenity, your scenario isn't the same as what happened. My 21 year old son moved out when he was 18. He moved back a few times and he was always welcome. 'Mi casa es su casa'. This is his home. However, if at any time, he brought a group of friends over, I'd have as big a problem with it as my DH. If he was living here, it wouldn't be as big a deal, but if he's living somewhere else and 'using' my house when he knows I'm out of town, has nothing to do with my relationship with him, he isn't doing it to spend time with ME. and I would never give an okay without discussing it with my DH. and if my DH had any objections, I respect him enough to not tell him 'too bad, it's my kid & my house, deal with it.' That's disrespectful.

That is not the same as two owners of the house having guests over without the other knowing. The son should feel welcome in his parents homes. and I agree with syerin, I've told my kids 'If you want to do as you please, get your own place to do it. There are rules here and when you have your own place, you can make your own rules.' My kids complain about a bedtime (lights out time), they can't eat in their room, they can't leave a mess behind, and they have to tell me if they use up the last of anything. I know they are tough, strict rules but when they pay for it, they can make their own rules.

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mom_of_4

Well, I assume (and maybe falsely but at least in my world in my relationship) I wouldnt simply say no just for the heck of it nor would my Dh say no just because. For example: My brother is teetering on the edge of being kicked out of my parents house. At 18 he feels he is more grown than he truly is and has repeatedly done things that have pushed my parents to the edge. I have mentioned to Dh that my brother might show up at our house if that ever happens. Dh does not want my brother to stay at our house. And while I do feel for my brother I understand and respect his reasoning. One being that my brother has stolen not only from my parents but myself. And, on the other hand his dad (who was not a nice person to say the least in DH's childhood) was on the verge of losing his apartment and started talking about living with us. I said no. That man will not live in my home for any amount of time. Not only was he a terrible father but he continues to be self centered and incredibly rude to me on most occasions.

And, back to the original questions I would only have a problem with DH having friends over if there was a specific reason like... I am coming home late that night and really dont want to have to deal with that or whatever.... I wouldnt just say no to just say no. This is why I said it opens the lines of communication for whatever your specific scenerio is and how you feel about it. Not necessarily playing "Mother may I" Although I can more than likely safely say I would have said no to a 19 year old having 10- 15 friends in my house while I was out of town...but then again Dh would have had a bigger problem with it than I ... he hates people in our house when he is not there. :-)

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wrychoice1

I find the following quote of KKNY really interesting:

"I think Dad should have told SM but shouldn't have to get her permission."

I wonder how others respond to this and I wonder how responses would differ if KKNY had happened to phrase her thought like this instead:

I think Husband should have told Wife but shouldn't have to get her permission."

Are the spouses here equal partners to one another or is one or both of them to be subjugated to the other?

"Dad" gets to impose his will on SM by announcing his decree? or SM thwarts Dad's will by refusing to grant "permission?"

How about a husband going to his wife to have a respectful, caring discussion about something his son would like to do?

"Hey Snookums, little Johnny wants to have 10 to 15 friends over to the house on the night we will be gone. I told him I would consider his request and get back to him. Before I said anything to him, yea or nay, I wanted to consult you, to get your thoughts and feelings about the matter regarding any concerns you might have. I'm OK with him having friends over; I know you are concerned about his past history of having a wreck while under the influence and his being ticketed for trying to purchase alcohol. I wanted us to be able to talk about this so we can address these concerns before I said anything to little Johnny one way or the other. So, Snookums, what are your thoughts?"

Is this "asking" for permission? or is this the beginning of a conversation between two adults? It seems to me in KKNY's statement, in either case, both adults are being infantilized to some extent...DH is being placed in the position of a child having to ask permission from SM; but SM is also being placed in the position of a child, having circumstances imposed upon her.

Is having a respectful discussion between two adults not an option?

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kkny

I didnt infantilize either adult. I never said DH should have to ask permission. I said he should inform. I have said that repeatedly. If he wants her help and advice, of course he can discuss. But giving her veto power over his child using his house, is, I think a mistake.

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serenity_now_2007

Ima, what if the DH and SM aren't technically "co-owners" of the house? I realize that in most cases they are (or at least both on deed, or both on lease if renting), and thus that tends to lend a lot more credibility to the "when they pay, they have say" set-up. Fair enough. But, for example, my Dad's wife has neither paid for household expenses nor contributed to household chores/maintainence (except this past year, well after my dad was diagnosed with terminal cancer, she finally got around to deciding to chip in with groceries and seems to want a Nobel Prize for it... But I digress). My SM may be a highly pampered exception, but that's still a common enough scenario to raise questions and seriously de-legitimize her right (for example) to tell my Dad (for example) that she vetoes visits from me (for example). No one formula seems to adequately determine absolute decision-making power in these situations.

The issue is thorny, for sure, and if it was clear-cut we wouldn't all be debating it six ways to Sunday like all of us do... But home ownership/residence as deciding factor in veto power can get dubious. Same with free rein soley based on *either* marital or biological relationship. Nobody should get free rein "just because I'm the wife [or the son, or the male head of household]"... but also, nobody should get to veto "just because I'm the wife [or the son, or the male head of household]". As with anything, a fair enough balance can be reached if there's enough compromise and give-and-take on all sides and no one gets too power-mad... That's all I'm saying, just that if we're going to grant veto power to our S.O.'s (or whoever), we should trust that they won't abuse it, and will use it fairly and hopefully as a last resort when other agreements are impossible to reach.

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mom_of_4

and I think absolutely within her right to say no!! It is not HIS house it is THEIR house.

So, I am still wondering what do you think should happen ... if he had "informed" her and she said she did not want that to happen for xyz reasons?

Should he say too bad that is what is going to happen? Should she just have to accept that whatever is going to happen whenever in her home with no say in the matter? or Should he listen to those reasons and they discuss it and if need be tell the child no sorry this isnt going to happen?

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mom_of_4

Compromise, discussion, open communication, respect of each others needs wants and feelings...

I don't know but to me these are highly important values in any relationship and should be maintained no matter what.

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cawfecup

All this debating I still say hubby was covering ....

The 19yr old didn't tell dad he was having 10-15 people over for coffee.... come on.

Hubby didn't feel the need to reprimand because its the kids house too fine and dandy ... but hubby should have told his wife the kid was having friends over whether or not they were going to be home.... and if hubby didn't know he was having a party ... he should have atleast said to his son ... hey son I know you had a party next time just give us a heads up so we know what is going on in our house......

If son didn't need permission to have a party she shouldn't need permission to feel disrespected in her own home.

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wrychoice1

Again, KKNY, you miss my point. It isn't even about him asking her for "help and advice." That presumes the decision to give the go ahead for the son to have the party is the husband's decision alone. It is not. It is a mutual decision, made in a manner that accommodates the issues important to both partners.

This reminds me of a discussion I had at one point with my now DH. Some of you may recall, I was widowed. In my first marriage, my DH & I worked (and I mean worked) very hard to develop a mutual decision-making process. It took a long time. We mud-wrestled with each other for probably the first nine years of our marriage creating something that worked for us. One example of this is the art work my first DH & I collected. We picked pieces that appealed to both of our differing tastes and sensibilities.

Some of this artwork hangs in the home I share with my now DH. One day he asked me about a couple of the pieces, "Did you or your DH pick this one out?" I answered, "We both did." His reponse was to think I was somehow merely being politically correct with my answer because he then said, "I know, I know. But did you pick this one out or did he?"

For some reason, he couldn't conceive that WE picked it out...one or the other of us had to prevail in the choice. So, I went over to the piece and began pointing to the elements of it that had appealed to me; the elements that had appealed to my DH; I went to a few other pieces and repeated...

It became clear to me then that my now DH, in all the time he had been with his first wife, had never worked out a similar process. In his case, the choices made reflected either his sensibilites or they reflected her sensibilities. In an effort to be fair, they might trade off on who got to decide what, but they had not ever really worked out a process where they came to genuinely MUTUAL decisions.

To be honest, I don't know many couples who do get to this point because it requires a tremendous commitment of emotional energy. It requires both partners to be truly interested in and respectful of their partner's thoughts and feelings; it requires a certain amount of courage to face the inevitable differences that will be revealed. It takes a willingness to be flexible and creative in developing solutions that address what is important to each of you. It takes patience.

Someone in another thread said something along the lines of "raising children isn't for sissies."

Neither is creating and maintaining a marriage as genuine, equal partners.

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serenity_now_2007

Cawfe, you make good points. OP, without doubt, should have at least been told about the party so there was no surprise... and she is certainly within her rights to feel about it as she wishes, including feeling disrespected if that's how she feels. I guess the question now would be which will be the primary target for her upset: her stepson, her DH, or the overall lapse in communication/agreement between all 3 of them. And the next question after that would be what proactive steps can she take, at least for her part if not theirs, to help prevent this kind of misunderstanding from recurring or escalating into power struggle.

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imamommy

Serenity, it's not necessarily a matter of who pays the mortgage or how the house is titled, they both live there, they both have equal say. It's THEIR home. If one lives there rent free because they are allowed to, then it doesn't mean they don't have any rights. If they have their own place and stay with the owner, then they don't share the same right since it isn't really 'their' house. Even if the son lives there and it's his home too, children (even adult ones) don't get to make the rules. The parents do. If I had to move back to one of my parents, I would not expect to get to do whatever I want, just because I live there and it's my house too. It's not my house too. I'm an adult and it's their house. The son is 19. Technically he's an adult too and when kids want to be treated like adults, they should act like adults. You can't say 'he's adult age and can do what he wants' and when someone says, 'well, adults have their own place so he should get his own place to party.' and then respond with 'oh, he's only 19, that's too young, you don't expect him to get his own place. He's not fully grown yet, in that regard.'

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cawfecup

Her husband which is why she asked

"Any suggestions or ideas how I can get my husband to see why I was upset and why I felt so disrespected?"

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sam1234

The more I read, the more I think about things and the more upset I get. Cawfecup, THANK YOU. That is EXACTLY how I feel. I just want to KNOW when people are going to be there. For example, when I drove by Friday night, the lights were on in my bedroom and in my bathroom so I asked my husband if he had left the lights on in there, he said, NO I didn't, I turned off all the lights. OK, if I had been in a hurry when I left and had left my underwear laying in the floor, I WOULD HAVE REALLY BEEN EMBARASSED. They had no business being in my bedroom. It really makes me ILL that my husband doesn't consider how things may make me feel.

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quirk

Well, sam1234's husband neither informed nor asked sam about the party, so the issue of "permission" vs. "head's up" is totally beside the point for her question; he did neither.

Besides which, a generalized agreement of what's acceptable or not, while incredibly sensible, is still "permission". If sam and her husband had a general agreement that it was ok for SS to have parties at the house while they weren't home, then that would be fine for him to give son the ok without asking her first because **she would already have agreed to it as generally acceptable**-- obviously, in real life, she had not.

--This is her *home*, she's a partner & a co-owner, not a roommate with benefits.--

I own my home. I rent to a roommate, no benefits :-). We have a rental agreement which has no specifics about when/how many guests we can have over. Legally, this is my house and I can do anything I want and she basically has no say in the matter. She is not my partner, she is not a co-owner.

I would never, except for some emergency, invite more than 1 or 2 other people into the house without letting her know ahead of time-- and even 1 or 2, would generally let her know unless it was a last-minute thing. I would never have someone in the house while I'm not there without letting her know ahead of time. ((There is an exception to this. My boyfriend has a key and might on occasion meet me at home and get there before me. She knows him and knows he has a key and wouldn't be surprised to find him there, so I don't necessarily tell her specifically each time. However, before I gave him a key-- which i cleared with her ahead of time-- I absolutely did call her each time if he was going to be there without me even if I wasn't expecting her to be home.)) I would never have a "party" (more than, say 4 or 5 people) without discussing it with her first and making sure it was ok with her-- yes, getting her permission.

It is just common courtesy for someone you share a home with whether family or not, that you do not bring other people into the house without the knowledge and permission (specific or general) of everyone who lives there.

No, I am not saying that it would then be ok for a SM to say that her SC are not allowed to visit; that's just silly. If my BF and I lived together and I tried to say his kids couldn't visit, I'm pretty sure he would laugh in my face and rightly so. That doesn't mean they could have a party while we were gone without my knowledge and I would be ok with it. Common sense, common courtesy, and mutual respect should come into play here. SS is 19, 19 year olds are often lacking in common sense, but husband is a grown man and should know better.

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serenity_now_2007

"Even if the son lives there and it's his home too, children (even adult ones) don't get to make the rules. The parents do."

Yes, the PARENT of the child gets to make rules for that child as regards the house. And where it very often gets dicey is when the PARENT (in this case DH) wants to be able to have his son (& friends) over, but the STEP-PARENT disagrees. Now, who has more say?
One could certainly make a convincing case for the right of a step-parent to have EQUAL say ---especially when that SP has been an instrumental part of the rearing of the child and when the child is a minor living under their roof on a long-term basis--- but even when equal, who should "trump" who when SM and DH disagree? The SM? Really, and every time? Therein lies the rub of all rubs, the central conflict, I believe, in stepfamily problems. And unfortunately there arent any easy answers to this or simple formulas for deciding who "wins". Therefore, the situation must be that everyone can "win" sometimes.

"If I had to move back to one of my parents, I would not expect to get to do whatever I want, just because I live there and it's my house too."

Nobody should ever expect that they will always get to do whatever they want, at all times, simply because they live somewhere or because they are The Wife, or The Child, or The Parent. Nobody should expect to always get their way, PERIOD.

"Technically he's an adult too and when kids want to be treated like adults, they should act like adults."

There was nothing in any of OPs posts to indicate that SS didnt behave as an adult. Nothing was damaged, there didnt sound like there was any evidence of excessive drinking, drugs, or sexual activity. (With the *possible* exception of someone turning on the light in the master bedroom, but we don't even know what for... maybe it was just to be able to see down the darkened hallway... we just don't know.) From the sounds of it, it was not unlike a comparable gathering of people years older. Okay, yeah, it was at a parents house & not his own place but it sounds like ---this time, at least, if not always in the past--- they all behaved respectfully. Maybe hes getting more mature, trying to show that he has learned to moderate himself better.

Another point nobodys made is that if these kids REALLY wanted to throw down and get into some real mischief, by now between the lot of them, Im sure they know people who live on campus ---or even off-campus, in their own places--- or could have gotten a room somewhere to do illicit things to their heart's content and no risk of being walked in on or having to clean up "evidence" (if any to clean up in the first place). Its like the idea of "at least theyre under my roof and want to be in my house" as opposed to getting in all kinds of trouble well out-of-sight.

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kathline

In our home, the guiding rule has always been that all members of the family own the house, and permission is not needed before bringing anyone home, at any time. Our door is always open.

BUT

The stepson in this case showed bad judgement in having fifteen people there. There is no mention that he told his dad he was having a crowd. The poster has every reason to be upset by this, since I get the feeling that she does not object to the son coming over when they arent there, nor do I think she objects to him having a few friends. Fifteen people in that age range really IS a party, and parties should be cleared with upper management first :)

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cawfecup

Give me a break the kid had a party dad didn't want to say boo to him rather than stick up for his own right as a parent to have a say in his own home ... he got pissy with SM for saying what SS did was wrong.

Read what she said in different replies ... dad didn't want to reprimand him for having a party ... why ? disney dad...

He's 19 with 10-15 people over the house... if I can home to 10-15 of anything that wasn't there when I left and I had no idea it was going to be there if I unexpectedly came home... I would feel disrepected. I don't care what the 10-15 is ... computers, piles of dog doo, dishes in the sink, 8 yr olds, anything that was not the way I left it would be a concern for me.

The SS we found out in other posts is not planning on entering the seminary he has a shady past and probably has shady friends.

Its a matter of respect and privacy on all ends ... but who is to be held accountable??? hubby for not doing anything or SM for wanting something done.... even if its a "hey son next time not so many friends" hey son give us a heads up what your plans are for the weekend.....

She asked .........

Any suggestions or ideas how I can get my husband to see why I was upset and why I felt so disrespected?

She didn't ask how can she get SS to why .... she knows he won't get it ... not unless hubby does something ....

AGAIN ... hubby is covering for the kid. Do you truly believe the son said ... hey dad the weekend you go away I am going to have a party with 10-15 people over and hubby said .. sure son not a problem.

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doodleboo

I'm not positive but I am guessing you are the scorned BioMom in your situation, right?

This is my views on this....even if this kid was my BLOOD kid I would of wrung his fathers neck if I would of came to my home that I pay rent on to find a group of teenagers that I don't know "kickin' it" in my home. Period. I'm sure if there was any mess left over she was the one picking it up. How much food and drink did these kids consume? Do you want people you do not know around your personals? I have trust issues as far as people being around my belongings. Silly maybe but I have had room mates that had "friends" over and alot of my belongings grew legs and "walked off". At nineteen if they want a party they can pay rent on their own home. My parents would of KILLED me. Not to mention she had peobably been working all day and may not of felt like having the company. Just because she isn't this boys biomom doesn't mean she doesn't deserve basic flippin' courtesy.

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serenity_now_2007

We also don't know for sure that he DIDN'T tell Dad there would be 15 people. We are all presuming, one way or the other. He very well COULD have told Dad the truth. (And it also could be that more people showed up than expected, as happens with most parties, whether it's 19-year-olds or 60-year-olds.)

In any case, SS really can't be blamed here. In his perception, Dad *IS* "upper management", and we really can't expect *SS* to go seek out SM (who, presumably, was out of town?) to get her clearance on this. DH possibly should have, but it's not realistic to expect that SS would or fault him for not doing so. It would have been super-duper-polite if he did, but it doesn't make him wrong for simply accepting Dad's go-ahead as-is. This is maybe not the description a non-custodial, relativel-new SM would want to hear about her authority in kids' eyes, but let's face it, it's true. It's also not anything personal; the kid just wasn't going to go seeking out a possibility of a "no" from every conceivable person. Again, like Sylviatexas says, sometimes the more people you ask, the more things get poo-poo'd... Every kid knows this, it's how kids make sure they get to have as much fun as they can get away with. I'm sure we all did it at least once!

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organic_maria

Oh for heaven's sake! Son wanted a bash with his friends, saw an opening at dads house cause it was convenient timing! Dad said yes and didn't consult wife cause he probably knew she would say no.
Personally, I would have RIPPED my husbands head off! Cause that is my house too and a person who lives 99,.99% somewhere else can do that partying ELSEWHERE not in my house!
I woul dhave a looooong talk with your husband and tell him that is your house too, you pay the bills. Yes your son is welcoming in my home when we are around. BUT , this house is OFF LIMITS to parties considering he lives 99.99 % at this moms.LEt the parties be there, That is his house, his home, his roost. My house is not his house. He is family but that doesn't mean he owns this house.
Its your husbands house too and unless you both agree to letting anyone have a party under your roof, then no one does!
Get pist off at your husband, not the SS. He got permission from his dad.
Oh, and if your SS has keys???? Change the lock and tell your husband no from now on.

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justnotmartha

"How about a husband going to his wife to have a respectful, caring discussion about something his son would like to do?"

Exactly, Wry. This should not be a question of permission and veto. This shouldn't be about who pays more for the house. This shouldn't be about who's kid it is. It's about a problem with the communication in their marriage.

KKNY is doing a fine job of spinning this into a stepmom, stepkid, biodad issue when it really isn't . . . though I do admire the effort it must take to twist every post into a bad SM example. It's not territorial - my son, my house, my call, kiss off SM. If my DH told our mutual son he could do this without discussing it with me I would be having the same problem as Sam - why does he not respect me enough to consult me? Why does he feel he has the right to allow this to happen in OUR home without having some dialog with me about it?

Perhaps if he had Sam could have said 'what if there is underage drinking? You know we don't carry a balloon policy on our homeowner's insurance that would cover us in the event of something tragic. Perhaps we should think about this a little more.' It's not her power to veto, but her right to bring her opinion on the matter to the table. TOGETHER, they should then reach a solution that allows them both some comfort. To do anything else is showing how little you value your spouse as a partner.

I understand it's been a while since you've been in a partnership, KKNY so I cut you some slack. But if you really believe that one spouse should have more *power* than the other and impose their choices on the the other then it goes a long way to show where your marriage may have had cracks. I'm sorry if that is cruel, but it explains a lot to me.

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sam1234

Organic Maria, those are some good thoughts. Thank you!!!!! If I changed the locks without my husband knowing, OR without giving my SS a key, WHEEWWWWWEEEEE, there would be H for ME to pay. I have been told that the SS WOULD HAVE A KEY.

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serenity_now_2007

Again, we don't know if Dad would have had a problem with his kid having a party at the house. Maybe Dad's a partier... or was one, and maybe he's glad his kid has friends and is happy to be the "cool dad" that can occasionally offer a place for this to happen for his son. Is that so awful? So what if he bends over backwards ---every blue moon (b/c we're obviously not talking about every week or even every month or even every several months here)--- to make his son feel welcome? Maybe he feels that's more important than the slight risk, one or two times a year, that a $40 lamp gets broken or there's a little more life & noise in the place for one evening...

We all have to remember, too, that Dad is non-custodial. Meaning he (and SM) rarely have to deal with this sort of inconvenience. There are plenty of custodial parents of *at least one* teenager that deal with teens in & out of the house on a near-constant basis. (That is, if their kids have any life or friends, which presumably is desirable...) How do these parents deal? They establish certain rules, occasionally get p.o.'ed when the occasional party gets out-of-hand, maybe sometimes it's bad enough for a punishment of some sort, and maybe sometimes the parents say: "I was never that popular when I was a kid... good for him!" My aunt & uncle are thrilled to be able to be the Cool Parents that let their son have all his numerous friends over for loud ska band practice, among numerous other noisy, messy activities. Sometimes they don't expect company, but it comes over anyways. I've been there to see them get a little irritated at this from time to time but it isn't the end of their freaking world. Why? Because they love him and the fact that he has a life and friends and interests. They are willing to put up with approx. 5 yrs of extra noise, mess & commotion so that he can live life, develop friendships in a safe haven, and remember them lovingly for many years to come for all they did to let him be a kid... and develop his talents, as a DRUMMER!!!

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doodleboo

If dad wasn't home what was the point of his son being there? I mean, if he wasn't hiding anything why not just have the friends over to mom's? Would BioMom have not approved of this? If thats the case the son is stepping around BioMoms rules by using Dad. This isn't fair to anyone. My parents, my BLOOD parents would have told me "No you may NOT have 15 people over to this house and if you don't like it hit the road Jack." My parents didn't play that whole kids make the call game. It was very much because "I am the adult and I said so". I'm also sure like many people have already said that the size of the group was grossly played down. 15 People is a good sized group. My boyfriend wouldn't even of invited 15 of his OWN friends over with out talking to me first no less 15 kids when there is going to be no one home. This has just really irked me. It's almost like if you live with a man or woman who has kids that arn't yours....your rights go down the tubes. Jesus, even convicted criminals have a voice. I guess Steps don't get that luxury.

Hey you, wash my kids clothes, make sure he eats, clean up his room, make sure he takes his medicine, buy his school supplies, help him with his homework, love him like he was your own BUT STAY OUT OF AFFAIRS CONCERNING MY CHILD! He isn't your kid.....what a gross double standard.

Sorry, you are no longer a valued member of society because you do not have Biological children....hahaha. Please. Everyone deserves courtesy and if you love someone, mother of your children or not, you will consider their feelings.

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cawfecup

I don't care if there was 10-15 19 yr olds reading the bible in my home .... if I didn't know about it I would be pissy ... I said its not on SS Sam said it wasn't on SS it was on hubby .....

So lets say the kid told dad and dad ok'd it .... its on dad to tell his wife what is going on in the house.... not the kid ... she never said it was on the kid .... she just wants to know what is going on in her home ... whether she rents a room or pays for nothing doesn't matter.... she called it her home .... end of story.

Her husband should have told her what was going on and he should accept the fact that yes his wife might get cranky that there were 10-15 people in her house with out her knowledge.

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doodleboo

#1 How cool to see a Dad on the forum!
#2 I think it's equaly cool that your Aunt and Uncle or both glad to be the Cool adults but the point isBOTH your Aunt and Uncle are cool with it. The problem I have with this isn't that the kids were there but that the opinion of the SM was completely over looked. I would probably be OK with it if I was at least informed but sending kids the message that your partners opinions and views are not important to me is underminding.

You should also know that I have a "rock star" family so the whole noise thing is a given at my home anyway. Daddy is a guitarist and I sing. I am positive both of the girls will grow up musical since they are surrounded by it daily. We arn't totally lame O's, we just respect each others opinions as should all couples. It's the only way to keep a relationship strong.

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sunnygardenerme

sam1234

I can relate to your situation because I have lived it. My DH always wants to be SS best buddy, best friend to the extreme that he is not being a parent and/or father. I have gone around and around with DH on how I need to be informed if the adult SKs are going to have a party or be staying in our home. I do like to know who is in my home when I am away and no one is home.
My SKs are now full adults 22 and 26. They no longer live with us and we have built this home without them being involved with any part of it. I enjoy when the come to stay with us, but I do not feel they need to stay without us home.

The SKs have their own apartments and I would not want to stay there unless they were there. I have tried to explain to DH that it is important to me that he let me know of his kids and his plans that effect me regarding my home or life.

I too see that he wants to be the good guy, the buddy, the best friend and not say no to his kids. But that turns him into a friend not a parent who can give advise and help his children grow up an be responsible adults.

Hang in there and keep talking with DH. Hopefully they get it one day.

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sam1234

Sunnygardnerme: Thanks for the encouragement! I am the same way, if I were going to their house, I would totally respect them and not even go by if they weren't home, that's just me.

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justnotmartha

Serenity - I think it's been agreed the party is the secondary problem which some may be fine with while others take issue. That's all well and good and up to them. The main problem, IMHO, is that Sam was not given the chance to to say how she felt - it was decided without her involvement at all.

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imamommy

Serenity, it's not even a step parent issue. It's a husband/wife issue. Husband consulting or discussing it with wife is to show respect... has nothing to do with him being the father and her being the step mother. She lives there, it's her house too. If dad wants to give his permission to let the son drive his car or go somewhere or do something, he doesn't need to consult the step mom. But when it's something that affects her directly, having a group in her home when she's not there, then it makes it her business. Regardless of whether she's mom or step mom or just the girlfriend that lives there. SHE LIVES THERE!!! (and when I say parents make the rules... um step parents are definitely entitled to make the rules of their house. They may not be able to make the rules for what the child does outside of their home, but if it affects them in their home, then they have just as much right to make house rules.)

and it's nice if your aunt and uncle like to be the cool parents. They are obviously in agreement over who to have over and what's acceptable. In OP's situation, she wasn't even given the opportunity to agree or disagree.

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doodleboo

You hit the nail on the head in three sentences.

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serenity_now_2007

I agree and empathize with the OP's feeling of not even having a chance to express her feelings/preferences on this issue. Absolutely she should be given as much room as anyone else to be able to express herself (unfortunately, no one in this situation bothered to have a more general discussion about such inevitabilities as this party earlier, but it's not too late.)

But the question really comes down to this, and this is where it's tricky and there's a fine line: to what extent does OP's *expression* of her feelings/preferences get to *determine* what actually happens in the case of she and her husband disagreeing or to *trump* his wishes as the kid's father? How to handle the actual decision where there is disagreement? When both DH & SM are in agreement that there will be no party, it's pretty straightforward: "their house", their say. But it's been made clear that DH and SM did not agree about this party taking place, and it's as much his house as hers. I'm not judging OP for this, but when she says "I just wanted to know, that's all", it doesn't seem like the total story of her feelings. At some level, she didn't want the party to have happened at all, or at least not the way it did... and that's fine, she has her right to her feelings. Again, the question is how to make the *actual decision* about whether SS will be able to have people over there (& under what circumstances) in a way that:

-permits an opening for OP to express her feelings and try to ensure that some of her needs (privacy, security) are met
-permits DH to be the hospitable "cool dad" for his son, because that is a strong need of his
-permits SS to enjoy an evening at Dad's with some people over

There's absolutely nothing stopping OP from now saying to DH: "Look, apparently we had a misunderstanding last time b/c of a lack of clear communication on this subject. Let's talk about it and decide on kind of a general policy on this sort of thing. I want you to be able to provide a nice place for your son and sometimes his friends to be able to come to. But I'm a bit concerned about things like the timing, the frequency of these parties and the number of people who'll be there. Also concerned about things getting broken or stolen. Can we come to some agreements on this? Maybe we can agree on welcoming the occasional party, say, a few times a year. And the more SS shows us that he can be responsible and clean up messes & nothing gets trashed, I can get more comfortable and not so worried if we're not around. Especially if he understands what his responsibilities are with these parties. I would strongly prefer, if possible, to know at least a week in advance so that I can plan to either be there or not be there, and I would like to keep certain rooms closed/locked. Does this sound fair to you? Great! I'm glad we could work it out so everyone's happy."

I defiitely think OP *should* express these things to DH, for her own sense of being an equal partner and for the opportunity to co-decide some terms so nobody has to be stressed or resentful.

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sam1234

Serenity: YES, that's what i'm looking for!!!!
THANK YOU.

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daisy11969

forget step-families for a moment.... it is just good manners that everyone be on the same page when guest are coming into the house. Call it "asking permission" in the case of SS, but hey we all live here, we all have a say in who comes and goes from our home. Basic good manners.

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sylviatexas1

What I said about acting rather than arguing was in reference to looking out for your interests rather than engaging in the talk-talk-talking that goes on between partners & that is sure to result in...
no change at all, nothing but resistance & frustration.

I would have thought that the example I gave (police & neighbors asked to watch house while we're away overnight) made that clear.

No, I do *not* believe that a married man or married woman should make a unilateral decision to give *anyone* carte blanche in the marital home, & I think it was done in this instance simply because the spouse is supposed to be out of town & the husband thought he could "get away with it", that his wife might not find out.

& yes, the 19-year-old *can* be blamed:
I'd bet a dollar that he approached his father knowing full well that his father's wife wasn't expected to be there & that he could maneuver his father into letting him have the "get-together".

& as someone said, if the son's intentions were truuuly "innocent", why didn't he have his "get-together" at his mother's house?

'cause she knew what was up & she wouldn't let him.

I my own self am with the neck-wringing contingent;
I would be livid if I came home to find that *anyone* had entertained in my home without my permission.

Undies in the bathroom, jewelry in the ceramic tray, whatever, it's *my* home, not a pizza parlor, & my permission is required for anything out of my usual routine.

Parent gives child permission & it's nobody else's business?

fine & cool & dandy.

as long as the house is the residence of no one but the parent.

The fact that this husband is a father does not mean that he can override his wife's, or anybody's, rights & entitlements;
this isn't a corporation in which fatherhood means he owns 51% of the stock, & this isn't Animal Farm ("All Animals Are Created Equal, But Some Are More Equal Than Others").

Had this husband mentioned this to his wife, the 19-year-old likely wouldn't have been allowed to have a party with neither one of them present, but'dd bet another dollar that the wife would have agreed to allowing him to have a get-together when she or her husband was there.

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sam1234

THANK YOU SYLVIA TEXAS!!!!!!

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theotherside

It makes no difference if he spends more time at one parent's house than the other - if both are really home (and if they are not, then it is not "parenting time" or "shared parenting" either) it is equally right or wrong to have a party at either house.

Maybe he wanted to have the party there because it was bigger, or more convenient, or for numerous other reasons.

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mom_of_4

it doesnt matter if it was bigger more conveniant or any other reason the fact remains that no one considered or even notified the other person living in the house... no matter of sm or ow or new wife or whatever title you want to give her... she should have been notified she should have been considered she should have had the oppotunity to have her oponions heard and considered and properly respected.

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theotherside

I don't think anyone has said that it was fine for the father not to bother notifying her.

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imamommy

I dont' know about anyone else, but the following posts are your words and they imply that you think it's fine for one to make the decision unilaterally. (I could be mistaken but that's how I interpret your posts. OP said the problem was with her husband, not the SS.)


* Posted by theotherside (My Page) on
Tue, Mar 18, 08 at 19:17

Why are you upset with the son if his father said he could be there and that his son should be able to do what he wanted there?

* Posted by theotherside (My Page) on
Tue, Mar 18, 08 at 19:44

Were they drinking, smoking marijuana, and trashing the house? Or were there just 10-15 kids hanging out there?

What needs? Why should he not put his son's wishes ahead of his wife's wishes?

* Posted by theotherside (My Page) on
Tue, Mar 18, 08 at 20:52

The point is that it is ok with his FATHER. If it is ok with his father, and they are not destroying the house or doing anything illegal, I don't see a problem. It might have been nice for the father to have mentioned it to his wife, but I don't see that the son did anything wrong.

* Posted by theotherside (My Page) on
Tue, Mar 18, 08 at 21:42

Strangers all by themselves or her 19 year old child's friends? No, she shouldn't need to have her husband's permission either for her child to have friends over.

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theotherside

Exactly. No one should have had to ask her permission, but the polite thing to do would have been for the husband to notify her - primarily for one of the reasons the OP stated, so she didn't do something like leave her underwear on the floor or something similar.

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cawfecup

Parenting time for a 19 yr old .... ???? his parent was going away that weekend! so how much "time" was he really getting.....

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colleenoz

So, tos, you DO support one partner being able to make unilateral decisions:
" No one should have had to ask her permission, but the polite thing to do would have been for the husband to notify her"
So why shouldn't the OP be able to make unilateral decisions-" No large groups of 19 year olds in my home when I'm not there" ? Cuts both ways.
I can't help but feel that when one partner in a household wants to make changes to the status quo, the other one must agree. If my DH said to me, "Honey, I'm going to bring a bunch of friends home from work/repaint the living room in puce/sell the car and buy a motor home/get a puppy" or whatever, this had better be an opening for a discussion, and if I said after consideration of his reasons, "I'd rather you didn't," and he went ahead and did it anyway, he'd better be ready for new records in pissed off. Similarly I don't believe I'm in the right to make changes without DH's agreement. At the same time, each partner needs to give fair consideration to such requests and not just use their veto to be bloody minded. I'd have to say, though, I'd be giving a definite "no" to the idea of a group of unsupervised 19 year olds in my house, unless I personally knew and trusted each invitee.
No matter how well behaved an individual 19 year old is, in groups, especially testosterone-laden boys, the dynamic can change radically. If for instance, one of the friends had posted "there's a party" on the internet, which has been known to happen, sam could well have come home to find 400 teenagers trashing her house and riot police in the driveway (which has also been known to happen). 19 year olds are not generally renowned for their good judgement, tos' children excepted, naturally.

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organic_maria

sam 1234,
What do you mean your SS will have the key????? If i had someone who visits and does not live with me , why should they get the key? I wouldn't even give my own son a key to my home incase he brings friends.
You know, what i noticed here and with alot of my friends kids, they think they are entitled to everything! Since they live their, its their home and they make decision! Who the hell made them boss??
When i grew up, my parents clearly stated to all of us in our house that its our home but we do not own the house, we do not make the rules and we can't just bring any of our friends without permission.
youre husband should have spoken to you about this party out of respect for you and if you veto'd it , it would have been your right as a human being. Period!
And as for the key. Scrap it out with your DH. I did with mine last night:)
I brought up the subject after i read your post. We do not have a house yet, but i asked him, would you give a key to your daughter and son? He said yes. I said nope. You wont. Cause even our son will not have a key to our home!
He didn't like it. But i said, mark my words. If you give a key to your kids, the lock will be changed and i will have a security system on top of it with a code that you will not know. I'm sorry. But no child will have a key to our house.
I just do not understand why you would give a key to a person who doesn't live there!!!!! I would give it to my son cause i know when he grows older that he wants to bring his friends but that will be under supervision. My home is private and i just do not want anyone entering it without my knowledge.
You know they are lookign around your bedroom! You saw it when the lights were on. Trust your gutt and tell your DH that its your home too and you do not agree with your SS having a key to a home that he does not live in 100% of the time.
Its the exact equivalent of a cousin coming every other day and then that same cousin says, well i may as well have a key to your home.
Growing up , i was over at my aunts house practically everyday. Did i get a key for that home..NOOOOO.
Stand your ground like i did with my DH. No key!

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theotherside

Because it was the boy's home, even if he primarily lives somewhere else. He has the same right to have a key, to have friends over, etc., as does his father. The OP said that there was no damage to the house, and she didn't expect any.

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colleenoz

I don't agree. If he primarily lives somewhere else, his only reason for coming to his father's house should be to visit his father, in which case Dad will be home and son doesn't need a key. I also don't believe kids, who are not the homeowners, have the same rights over how the house is used as do the parents, who do own the home. If they want these priveleges, they need to have permission from BOTH stakeholders.
I wouldn't treat my adult DD's home as my own, and expect to have a bunch of friends over etc, without the consent of both her and her partner, even though I do have a key for emergency purposes. Similarly she wouldn't behave like this, even though my house was her home until she left school and went to college (and she has a key for emergencies).

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theotherside

Well, do kids of divorced parents have two homes, or don't they? If they really only have one home, and are merely occasional guests at the other, then the NCP should not refer to it as "parenting time" when the child is actually just visiting. If the child should not feel equally at home in both places, then the parent with whom he spends less time is not equally his parent, and consequently should not have equal say in medical, educational, or other matters.

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mom2emall

THE ADULTS RESIDE IN THE HOME AND PAY THE BILLS. THEY ARE IN CHARGE OF WHO COMES AND GOES IN THEIR HOME. A CHILD SHOULD NOT HAVE THE AUTHORITY TO THROW A PARTY IN THEIR PARENTS HOME. I WOULD NEVER BE OKAY WITH TEENAGERS BEING IN MY BEDROOM-PERIOD! AS A CHILD I WOULD NEVER HAVE DARED TO HAVE 15-20 FRIENDS IN EITHER OF MY PARENTS HOMES WHEN THEY WERE NOT HOME. I KNEW THERE WOULD BE CONSEQUENCES.

THIS TEENAGER KNOWS HIS DAD IS A PUSHOVER. DAD IS PARENTING OUT OF GUILT AND LETTING SON RUN WILD. DANGEROUS COMBO, WILL NOT BENEFIT SON IN ANY WAY. SON DOES NOT LEARN CONSEQUENCES. FUNNY HOW DAD CAN STAND UP TO SM...WHO SHOULD BE HIS EQUAL...AND TELL HER IT WAS OK BY HIM FOR THE PARTY.

TELL YOUR DH TO GROW A PAIR OF BALLS AND TELL HIS SON NO ONCE IN A WHILE!

THIS IS NOT A WICKED STEPMOM SITUATION...IT IS A SMART CHILD WHO CAN MANIPULATE HIS DAD SITUATION. THIS MANIPULATION WILL CONTINUE FOREVER IF IT IS NOT STOPPED!!

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organic_maria

I agree with colleena and mom2 in this case all the way.
The situation is not of having two homes. His Main home is with his mother and yes he visites his dad. I can understand what TOS is getting at when it comes to homes. Its depends on waht you actually define as a home. For me a home is somewhere , a place, any place (can be anyones home aunt, father mother wahtever...friend) that you reside 90% and up. A place you feel comfortable in and that you are welcomed. But ahome should not be confused with ownership. You make a child or anyone welcomein your home but that doesn't mean they can do whatever they want.
Kids from divorced family do have two homes. BUT, if visitation rights are only eow. Then the main 'home' is where that child reside. His other 'home' is a visitation but not as strong as the main one. The kids will feel more connected to aplace they reside 100% of the time.
This teenage kids is only using the other house to his convenience. Thats all. He doesn't live there.
Tos, i do not agree with you that just because the child spends less timeover at the other house , that the father or mother at the house has less say in medical , education and other matters. Lets get real here. You didn't get pregnant on your own and just because people get divorce, that doesn' relenquish them being a father or mother. Both parents have rights. BUt depending on the circumstance, i can understand why you would say that, especially if you have fahter figure who doesn't want his kids around and then has the audacity to say he has a say when he show's he doesn't care about time spent with his kids.
Its a tough call. BUt in the end, the house is ruled by the parents. Not the kids. Giving veto power or any sort of power to a child or a teenager is not a wise decision. They do not have enough life experience to make the proper decision in life. They are inthe training process under adult supervision. Having a whimpy father giving into his son wants is not helping his son in the long run. It just teaches him he can get what he wants from another person.
This is not his home anymore TOS. He stays with his mom 99.99% of the time. He doesn't sleep on weekends anymore. He doesnt visit EOW liek other young children. That house may have been his home 15 years ago but he is now a young adult 19 years old and wanting to throw parties which is natural.
He could have asked both parents. I'm not saying its wrong to throw a party at another persons house cause you dont live there. I'm saying it was wrong to throw it without consulting the second person who owns that house period.
What bothers me most is the kids being in her bedroom. What right to they have lookign around there???
I caught my SD doing that last year a few times on a weekend and i would ask. What are you doign in my room. She would say just looking around. So i went into the kids room and sat..and looked around too. She got the message.
You have to respect one another. It really doesn't matter who you are. To me the son sounds ok. He didn't damage the house but i dont think at his age and in the circumstance that he should have a key. Just cause he has no key doesnt' mean he wont be welcomed in that home.
As a young child , i never had keys to my parents house. I lived there 24/7 and even when i worked at harvey's, i still didn't have key. My father would stay up until i came home.
My aunt next door, who was an adult, had thekey for us kids if there was any emergency like school finishign early or one of us was sick.

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theotherside

My kids all have had keys. I want them to be able to get in whenever the drop by (in the case of the adult ones) or if they get home and I don't happen to be there.

I wouldn't have had as much of a problem with the father saying he didn't want his son to have a party, but since it was apparently ok with his father, I think it was ok. My point, however, in the previous post was that it is completely irrelevant whether or not the boy stays there less time than he stays elsewhere. If it would have been ok had he lived there full-time, it is still ok if he doesn't.

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kkny

I think it is very convenient for some "SMs" who marry a man with a child and then say oh child spends 99% of time with mom, we shouldnt have to give him any part of a home. Which btw is not what I think OP was complaining about, just notice.

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finedreams

I disagree about "primarily living". DD always primarilly lived with me (like 75%) but her dad's house was always her home as well. it was never that it is her home but dad's house is not.

As about keys I and my brother both have keys to our parents home and we are not 19. ha

I agree that wild parties in parents absence should not be taking place in neither house. They shouldn't be snooping in the bedroom etc And they need to ask if they can bring large groups of friends over. But i completely disagree that son should not be considering his dad's house his home.

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finedreams

just to add that kids of any age should not be bring huge parties to parents house without parental concent-even adult kids, I certainly would not like that. I didn't even like sleepovers with one or two friends if I am not there and if i don't know friends and if i gave no permission.

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doodleboo

I think you are wrong. Me and my DH have our girls 98% of the time but I would still be pissed if he gave the girls keys and they were throwing parties in my house. It isn't a matter of step or Bio or who has them the most. It's respect for people whom you SHARE ahouse with. It is no more the sons house then the Mother figure who is living there. At 19 he can get his own apartment if it's truly a life or death situation to throw a party. I don't think it would of beena big deal to this woman if it had only beena couple of kids but they threw a freaking party in her house with out so much as notifying her.

THAT IS WRONG. I don't care what bloody angle you try to approach it from....it's wrong.

P.S. I don't have keys to my parents house. I call when I'm going to be in town because it's the polite freaking thing to do.

P.P.S. They are my BIO parents so don't try to pull the step card.

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organic_maria

Thank you doodleboo,
I spoke with my DH again and asked hime the question. He said no this time. He thought it over and said that both his kids would not have the key to our house. They live with their mom but to him he said why should have keys to our house when they live up there. Why give them power. He said this is 'our' house, Our's. Not kids. they do not pay the bills and they should not feel entitled to everything. THey have keys to their moms house. He feels that is reasonable. I dont agree. I was brought up keys are with adults not children.But to each their own. Biomoms house, is her rules, she sets the pace. Our house, is my DH and mine .We get to set our pace. Simple as that.
If the kids do not like it.Tough. Those are our rules and that is what we live by.
The original post didn't have the key situation. But it was brought up later.So please dont play the st*pid SM card. That kids is an adult! 19 years old. He has no business having that key to begin with. His fahter is a push over and better start respecting his wife.He took vows with her. Not his child.He paid CS, raised him and he is now grown up. He has no business having that key if he lives elsewhere. If he comes to visit. FIne. Call and visit.
I didnt' have keys to my SM's house either. I rang the door bell! and if i had to work very late they made arrangements for that particular day.

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theotherside

I am completely flabbergasted that someone would not give children keys to the house. Among other things, it would be horribly inconvenient. I wouldn't be able to work if my teens had to depend on my being home in order to get in the house. The one child who is allowed to visit her father has the key code to that house, so obviously it is not a problem for him or his current wife either. I don't see what the big deal is.

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mom_of_4

I will agree that it is a little strange to me at least that kids wouldnt get a key to the house. Although I have to say that I have thought more than once if I would feel comfortable with my kids having a key to our house (when they are old enough to actually need a key) not because of the kids having it but because I seriously wouldnt put it pass BM to make a copy of the key and use it to her advantage. Especially since, we are fairly certain she was at our house when we were out of town the last time.

We will just have to work that out when the time comes closer.

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doodleboo

If you don't see the big deal I guess you missed the whole party scenario. I wouldn't want my blood kid, step kid, brother, sister, teachers asst., doctor or whatever having the key o my home if I felt I never knew what I was going to walk into when I got home.

Again, I never had a key to my parents home. I have scheduled days (every Sunday) when I visit or I give my mom a call if I'm dropping by. Every family is different. I respect my parents enough to give them a heads up exspecially if I'll have a stranger with me since my mother has never been big on company.

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imamommy

I have a key to my dad's house, only because I have a reason to be in his house, because I take care of his wife when he is working. Before that, I never had a key to his house. I don't have a key to my mom's house. My kids all have access to a house key for my house, but I don't give them a key to carry around. (I have a lockbox that they have the code to, which houses our house key) We don't have to worry about anyone copying or losing the key. But, then my kids are teenagers. I wouldn't give my 8 year old step daughter a key. (not because she's my step daughter, but because she's 8) Giving a key to your house is a personal choice and there is no right or wrong answer, it's YOUR house, YOU decide who gets a key. Period.

On the other hand, if I came home and found a group of kids in my house when I wasn't informed or hadn't given my consent, then there would be hell to pay. Now, I understand the OP's SS had his dad's permission (0r so they claim) and placing blame where it belongs... on dad if he gave the permission and SS for not making sure it's okay with both of them.

When I was a kid, I remember the 'go ask your mom' and 'go ask your dad', but I knew darn well that I'd better get the same answer outta both of them eventually before I did anything. I would never have gone to just one parent to get the answer I wanted and not ask the other one too. and I never really put much thought into whether it was respectful or disrespectful, it was just the right thing to do.

(This thread reminds me of something my step daughter did the other day. She made a puzzle in her room on Wednesday. Her mom & sister were coming to pick her up Friday. On Thursday, she was talking to her sister and I overheard her telling her that she was going to show her the puzzle. Well, she didn't ask me if her sister could see the puzzle, instead she asked her dad when he was putting her to bed. He told her no. He said that he didn't want her bringing anyone into the house. (I think since he was going to be at work, he didn't want BM to come into the house, which she might do if SD brought the sister in). Anyways, on Friday morning, SD asks me if she can show the puzzle to her sister. Normally, I would have said yes, no problem... however dad already said no. I can't undermine his authority so I asked her, 'did you ask your dad?' she said he told her no, so I told her then no. When her mom got there, she went and got her sister and started walking toward the house. She went to my daughter and asked if she can take her sister into her room. (I was waiting in my car because we were leaving as soon as BM left with SD) and my daughter told her the house was already locked. She was very persistent and I'm not sure if there was a moral to the story, other than kids will go to who they think will give them what they want. Obviously, the stepson went to dad because mom said no or he knew dad was more likely to say yes. He didn't go to stepmom because he probably thought she might say no and maybe dad thought so too, so they didn't tell her at all.

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justnotmartha

Two interesting observations I just made:
My Sd has a key to our house (CP) but not to her mom's (NCP).
I have a key to my parent's house on the other side of town, but my younger brother who lives in their seperate guest quarters and has a history of parties and such, does not. Hmmm.

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kkny

I agree, 8 year olds dont get a key. 25+ -- up to parent. But 19, they are old enought to come and go, and I wouldnt expect them to be on their own. I assume 19 yr olds are in college, working on internships, etc. Where are they supposed to go on breaks, etc.? Only moms?? That really doesnt seem fair to me.

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terrig_2007

My DH and I have 50/50 custody of his two sons--ages 17 and 18. They spend every weekend with us and come and go for work, friends, etc. They each have a key to the house. There was never any question about not giving them keys. And so far, they have not abused this. They have stopped over midweek to pick up/drop off something or to hang out until we get home and that's OK with us. We've "trained" them to clean up their own messes, and they rarely leave a mess for us.

As for the boys having friends over, DH doesn't always necessarily check with me first. If it's just a friend or two, I really don't care. They have their own space downstairs, so they are out of my hair. As for parties, yes, DH certainly would not OK it without getting my OK too. It's the respectful thing to do. After all, it's MY home too.

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mom_of_4

I have had a key to my parents house since I was about 9 or 10 because that is when I started taking the bus home from school and walking. I still to this day have a key to the house (actually both houses) but I would never dream of just randomly showing up at their house without them there and going through things or taking things or having other people in their house without them knowing. My brother however, who still lives there is not allowed to have a key to anything... not the house not the car not the shop... But, then he has had parties and invited girls into my parents shop to well lets just say they werent working...

As I said right now, the only concern I would have with my kids is BM getting a copy... I will have to think on that one carefully... when the time comes ofcourse.

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terrig_2007

"As I said right now, the only concern I would have with my kids is BM getting a copy... I will have to think on that one carefully... when the time comes of course.

That was one of my concerns as well, or the boys taking her over for a "tour" when DH and I aren't home. But I don't believe that has happened.

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sylviatexas1

"Where are they supposed to go on breaks, etc.? Only moms?? That really doesnt seem fair to me."

but that isn't the problem:

The problem is the violation of OP's space & the flagrant disregard of her position as co-owner of the home.

NOBODY suggested that a, say, 8-year-old boy be left to languish at his mom's while his father & his father's new wife cavort in the hot tub;

The transgressors here are OP's HUSBAND & HIS SON.

Marrying does not nullify your personhood, your property rights, or your right to expect that your space & your privacy will be respected:

(I've occasionally wondered how much happier people would be if they treated their nearest & dearest with the courtesy they grant strangers on the street.)

Marrying a man, with kids or without, does not relegate you to the status of an appliance (convenient, useful, maybe even nice to have around, but certainly not human).

Wives, first, second, or eighth, are entitled to the respect, support, & consideration you'd grant any partner...
or any stranger on the street.

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kkny

Slyvia,

No one has suggested that DH shouldnt have given notice.

And trust me, my DD is left to languish while Dad and his SO are in hot tub all the time.

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imamommy

when she was 8, kkny?

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sylviatexas1

"Given notice" isn't good enough.

Giving notice is what you do when you inform someone that you are exercising your rights & they can like it or lump it, ie, when you give notice to a tenant that you'll be in the property to do maintenance or inspections or when you give the tenant notice that you are not going to renew the lease.

This woman is not a tenant;
she's a co-owner.

Her rights are *equal to* her husband's.

He's in no position to "give notice" to her.

Her consent is required.

As she has said herself, she would have had no problem with stepson being in the house.
The problems are

1) Husband unilaterally gave permission that he had no right to give without his wife agreeing to it &

2) Son abused the privelege & had a bunch of people in the home for a party.

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kkny

Sylvia,

So help me out.

Does stepchild have to have Stepparents permission before he comes over?

Before he has one friend over? What if he leaves dirty dishes in sink? Leaves toilet seat up?

At the end of the day, how do you distinguish Stepmom rights from stepmom not allowing reasonable use of the house by stepchild.

I think people should talk about these things before marriage. others disagree.

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colleenoz

"Does stepchild have to have Stepparents permission before he comes over?"
Yes. If it's not convenient, or if SC is habitually rude and confrontational to SP, then I think he/she has every right to prefer SC not visit. But, SP should make the effort to ensure visits ARE convenient, and exercise veto sparingly and carefully.

Before he has one friend over?
Yes. Homeowners have the right to approve who is in their house. If it was a bio-child he/she would have to have parental permission to bring friends home- at least, mine did. Children and teenagers aren't always as discriminating as they might be.

What if he leaves dirty dishes in sink? Leaves toilet seat up?
Then SC should have it pointed out, "these are the house rules, please follow them. Then we won't have to nag you about them, and we'll all be happier."

At the end of the day, how do you distinguish Stepmom rights from stepmom not allowing reasonable use of the house by stepchild.
By comparison with bio-child rights. If, given the same circumstances, SP would allow bio-child to behave in a particular way, then in fairness SC should be allowed to behave similarly. However, if bio-child would NOT have been allowed to do something, it is not discriminating against a SC to veto.

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kkny

Colleen, but would you throw the biochild out for these violations? That is the problem. Most people would not throw out a child for these things.

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imamommy

If my child doesn't live with me, then yes, he has to get my permission to come over when I'm not home. If I'm home, he's welcome to visit me anytime he wants.

If my child is bringing a friend over, yes he has to ask me first, whether he lives with me or not. I like to know who is in my house, especially if I'm NOT going to be there.

If he leaves dirty dishes or toilet seat up, then I would give a warning. It may be okay in other people's homes, but my kids aren't allowed to do that at any time, so why would it be any different if they just stopped by with a friend? If I came home and had to clean up after someone that just dropped by, I'd probably take the key away.

At the end of the day, it's my home and my children are going to abide by my rules and if they don't like it, too bad. I'm the parent. I'm the adult. When I go to their house someday, I will give them the same respect I expect them to give me.

and there's no difference to me if it's my step child. It's still my house and my rules.

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sylviatexas1

I must have missed the part where somebody said they were going to throw somebody out of the house...

but even if I had given permission for a "get-together", if I found that my congienality was being abused, that my home was being used for a huge party, I'd throw 'em all out, son or stepson & all his "guests", & hubs & I would have a major air-clearing policy discussion.

but we all have the right to make our own decisions about what goes on in our homes;

anyone who feels that "kids" should be allowed to run wild over other people's personal space, privacy, & boundaries has every right to allow it *in his/her/their own home*.

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kkny

Sylvia,

Closing a party down is one thing -- although the problem is Dad wasnt home either.

The issue which no one wants to answer is to me the crux of this. How does one balance the right of a father to have his chld in the house with the right of the mother to feel comfortable in her house? I am not saying this is an easy question. What I am pointing out is that once you give Stepmom veto power, it can drive stepson away. To say, well he is not here 99% of time, I would say, well then the little time he wants, Dad should have more ability to have the son there. And to say Dad wasnt even there (i.e. no quality parenting time), Dad still has obligation to child (yes, I regard 19 yr old as child). I do not expect 19 year olds to have their own home. To compare veto power over 19 yr old with veto power over stepmoms mother, etc, all of whom should have their own home is not fair.

Ima, you may regard your SD as your own, but there is a wide range of feelings here. For a SM who does not regard the child as her own, this veto power is more disconcerting.

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colleen777

Ok, let's look at this in a different way. Dad wasn't there anyway so it had nothing to do with Dad/son time.

New scenario:
Mother, is out of town, so son goes to dad and asks permission if he can have a party at mom's house. Dad says well sure course you can.

Mom comes home early and finds out dad gave son permission to have a party in her house, and she wasn't even given "notice"

What would mom do?

Seems both houses are dads, so he alone can decide what goes on in both houses.

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kkny

No Coleen, for the Nth time, it has to do with SM having veto power over dad providing for his child. Which I guess most SMs want.

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colleen777

What would mom do?

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cawfecup

NO SC shouldn't have to ask permission to come over but all children should give a head's up... I am bringing a friend, I am bring 10-15 friends.

As far as the key thing.... We haven't locked a door in years, I don't even think I could find the key if we did lock the doors. Even when I lived in the city I didn't lock my door my son always forgot his key ... rather than him being locked out we left the door unlocked.

She didn't veto the son being there.... she vetoed his 10-15 friends while they were not home.... with or without dads permission ... if dad knew about it, he should have told his wife what was going to happen while they were not home... but I still say dad was covering maybe the son told him a "few friends" but I doubt it was "hey dad I am going to have 10-15 friends over while you and your wife are away this weekend" and dad said "sure son no problem".

Again her question was .....

Any suggestions or ideas how I can get my husband to see why I was upset and why I felt so disrespected?

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colleen777

No kkny, for the Nth time, it has to do with moms having veto power over dad providing for his child. Which I guess most moms want.

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kkny

Cawfee,

We all agree the husband was out of line. If she cant explain why she felt violated, what dangers could have happened and get DH to understand, I doubt there is anything anyone here could have suggested.

Coleen, I dont see how any mom here was suggesting that the mother have veto power. The dad evidently allowed this.

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colleen777

You never cease to amaze me, and if you weren't so creepy I might even get angry with you. Let's just look at how you put the onus back on the wife.

IF SHE CAN'T EXPLAIN - obviously SHE wasn't able to explain why she FELT violated? First of all how do you explain anything to anyone whose MO is: Don't bother me with the facts, I have already made up my mind!

You are a primary example of that mindset kkny. Plus, she didn't FEEL violated, she WAS violated in a very deep and fundamental way. In the same way mom would have been had the tables been turned.

and you kkny most definitely are the one who states over and over and over again mom has veto power.

Now back to my question, what would mom have done?

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terrig_2007

"At the end of the day, it's my home and my children are going to abide by my rules and if they don't like it, too bad. I'm the parent. I'm the adult. When I go to their house someday, I will give them the same respect I expect them to give me."

Well said! I agree entirely.

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doodleboo

KKNY, reading your posts makes me realize that maybe you are holding in just a little bitterness. Just wee bit. (Sarcasm here)

It isn't a flippin' Step mother issue. It is a child vs. adult issue and yes...I will say it. I don't care whoes panties get in a twist. When it comes down to a parent vs.child situation the parent (step or otherwise) should get the last say.

If the parent isn't an evil tyrant out to eat the child's soul which Sam1 is NOT, then yes. She should have some say over the rearing of a child, of any age, that lives in HER house. Visits HER housew. Throws parties in HER house or whatever. BIO OR NOT.This isn't limited to the "party incident" either. How ridiculous, and self righteous of you KKNY I might add, to think only Bio parents are god like enough to have an opinion in the matters of parenting. Do Steps not fill all the roles of the parent's when you guys arn't around? In my personal case thats 98% percent of the time!!!!

I have my girls. If Biomom told me I am to stay out of her childrens personal affairs and not ever discipline or tell them no I would LAUGH RIGHTLY IN HER FACE! I would laugh in her face, pat her head and walk away. There is no way a Step parent can always just "let the bio handle it". No way. My husband always gets my advice on his girls but he doesn't have a chip on his shoulder either. He knows my main concern is our girls best interest. Biomom on the other hand.....she thinks in her dilluded, bitter, hate filled mind that I am out to destroy her and steal her children like I stole her man...hahahaha. If she is that concerned she should make an effort to see them more than once a week. I didn't "steal" her man for the record. She believes her own stories.

Bottom line, We may not have carried these children for nine months (which is ALL the girls mom did) but we are helping to raise the babies so we should have a voice.

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organic_maria

Veto power? I couldnt' give a rats A** what decision he makes as long as it doenst interfer with our plans that were set ages ago and as long as he respects me in teh process.
My SK do not live with me. Life is complicated as it is. I told my DH just keep a regular schedual thats all i ask. We tried beign flexible for the first three eyars with them and it got out of hand. So many things were cancelled and so many disappointments. I said ENough! They come EOW. Yes. Then keep it EOW.Do not swap weekends unless its a must, not for ex wives convenience!
My DH took his vows in front of GOD to me. He divorce over 8 years ago. I expect respect from my husband. It has nothing to do with vito power. They are not my kids, not my responsibility so why would i get involved in decision making about them. THat is my DH responsibility. He is their father. Let him deal with them!
ANd no, if they do not respect me as a human being then i do not want them around.Sorry. I do not want anyone around who is negative anymore.If my DH wants, he can spend a weekend with them elsewhere if they don t want to coem down.
If i had a hand in raising them then yes i have the right. I'm giving my heart and soul. But in our case its a straight cut. 100% falls on biomom!

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sunnygardenerme

After reading this post over I can not believe that any one would say it is ok for a adult child to be able to do whatever he/she wants in someone else's house. The adult SK does not pay the mortage, the monthly bills, or for repairs that need to be done. SK's do not have say over any one who pays the bills for that house and that includes a step parent.

About giving out a key to a adult step kid. I do not have keys to my adult step kids house and I do not think I should have one or want one. In return they do not need a key to our house. If they want to come to our house they can come to visit and we will be there to let them in.

When my SKs lived with us they stole, yes stole many of my household items, personal items, etc. and some of them had sentimental meaning to me. I call taking things without asking "stealing". I do not want them in my house when I am not there.

They continue to constantly try to get items from our home by asking DH for things. I told him anything that leaves this house I need to know about.

Now, every situation is different, but in the case of mine and it sounds like in the case of sam1234 that this SK has taken advantage of things. That is when the trust is lost and no longer can these types of SKs be allowed to run free in the house.

I wish more people had common sense and these DHs would wake up and see things for the way they truely are. Sometimes I feel like reversing things around and have some of my young adult relatives come stay in our house and take things of DH. I would like to see how he would feel. Just a thought but I would never do that to anyone.

sam1234 hold your ground and make sure you make it clear to DH where you stand.

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organic_maria

Sunnygarden that would be interesting test. You wouldnt' do it cause you have respect for your Dh. This husband had no respect for his wife at the time. Permission is always needed and it doesn't matter whether its friend, cousin, kids, stepkids etc..etc... Its sam's house too and she has the right to say NO to anyone she feels for whatever reason.
I said no last month to SD bringing one of her friends down. She steals from us and i caught her last year. My SD may have forgiven her but i don't and i dont' care. Even her mother is not keen of having her at her house...that's says alot!

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ceph

I am an adult stepchild and I have keys to my dad and SM's place.
They live a few hours away, in a lovely freshly renovated cabin right on the edge of a lake. They drive longhauls and aren't home much. They have no problem with me going to their place whenever I want, but I always call to ask. I tidy up after myself, replace anything I used (or at least tell him that I polished off the kindling wood but couldn't find the hatchet to chop more)
I have called to ask if I can bring a couple friends out for the weekend and they have cheerfully agreed. This past weekend, I went out with BF and A__ and we had a great time. Dad and SM didn't bat an eyelash at my request to go to their place.

I'm the only one of my siblings with a key, but Dad says they are welcome to borrow mine anytime they'd like. SM's three girls all have their own keys, and also call up to ask when they would like to come up and our parents have no problem with that either.

HOWEVER, none of us (either his kids or hers) has ever caused them any major trouble and we're a pretty functional adult stepfamily.

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imamommy

I don't think it's an issue if the adults (owners of the house) are in agreement to give the kids keys or extend permission to even bring friends over when they are gone. I think the bigger issue here, is dad keeping it from his wife. If he didn't think it was such a big deal, there was no reason to not tell her. (It would have been better if they had a discussion about this beforehand.)

Whether it's a big deal would depend on many things, there's not a simple answer. It would depend on the child, the trust the parent has in whether they will be responsible, past problems, etc. etc. in addition to valuables in the home (as well as being able to trust that all friends brought over wouldn't steal and/or that there wouldn't be so many people there that the 'kid' would be able to watch them all, etc.) There are many variables. It all comes down to mutual respect (between husband/wife & child/adult) and trust. [and of course, personal preferences. Some parents don't want their adult children that have moved out, to have free access to their home when they are out, for whatever reason. It's their home.]

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