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My 14-y/o son and his angry stepfather

Hello all. I hope perhaps I can get some points of view here that are helpful. Here is my story:

First of all, I was a stepchild. My parents did not tell me I was a stepchild until I was about 13 years old. I was illegally put under my stepfather's name, when there was no legal adoption; never had any contact with my natural father or his family whom I later learned I actually grew up around many of my father's family. I tell my story first to maybe show how I may need some advice. My stepfather and his family did treat me differently and I never understood why. When I found out, I was hurt because then I felt that the reason I was treated the way I was was because I did not belong. I always felt like I didn't belong. To make matters worse, my mother was adopted, so even her family wasn't really "blood", although I loved my grandparents (and my mother felt like she didn't belong) dearly. My stepfather had a terrible temper and I did get the nasty end of that a lot and he had a lot of rules for me that he didn't have for his kids. I was a straight A student, did try to join in extracurricular activities, had friends at school, worked since I was 12, etc. I had very few friends who would come to my house, though, as they were afraid of my dad.

Now, my current problem is: I was married for 18 years and I had 3 children, two were older, my youngest son was 4 when his dad chose to leave. We divorced after 1 year of separation. Because of many issues with my ex-husband, I took a job in another town to give my son a better life. My two older children wanted to stay near their friends, but did later come and stay with me. I was divorced for 7 years, and I did date as I did want a partner as I never really had that with my first husband and I thought my son needed and wanted a father figure in his life. After 7 years, I met someone and we married 2 years ago. The problem is that my husband has a very nasty temper. Before we met (we met on the internet), he told me he went to church; my profile said social drinkers and NO smokers. I believe my husband drinks more than he admits and he also took up smoking. He gets into moods and he sets so many rules for my son, that my son has actually told me that he sometimes just wants to kill himself. This worries me very much. My ex-husband does not pay child support at this time because he lost his job and he has not paid for insurance and no longer have a job that carries insurance, so my son is covered under my husband. I try to talk to my husband about his rules and his temper and that he should think about things first. I tell him that I will stand by his rules unless I do not agree with them as I do feel that some of his rules are unjust. He also follows my son around the house and "spies" on him. My son has gotten pretty nervous, but he tries to stay calm out of respect for me. About the rules: Before I met my husband, my son had his own television, VCR, game system, stereo, etc. in his room. We had a 2-bdrm house and he had the TV in his room so he could play his games on them and watch his shows, so that if there was a movie on that I wanted to watch that he didn't, we could each watch our own show, although, my son and I did spend time together watching family shows together in the evening. My son and I were very close; we went to movies together, events, etc.

Since my husband came into our life, he started changing things. He immediately started telling my son's friends they were not welcome over. My son had about 3 friends that he had met from when we moved here when he was 6 years old, he was 12 when I met my husband, so; he basically grew up with these boys. My husband told them they could not come over. One boy actually rode his bike over to visit my son one day and put his bike in the back of the garage; I was at husband came home and for some reason walked behind the garage and found the bike. He came in and yelled at the boy so bad, he terrified him. I must mention that this child has Tourette's disease and has some problems. Another boy, who is my son's best friend and is also one of my ex-co-worker's son was chased away, also. My husband gets very mean with these kids. My son's friends talk about my husband. My son, who the teacher's say is very intelligent, is getting E's in all of his classes. IT is because of homework assignments. I think the atmosphere in my home is such that my son just doesn't feel like doing anything when he gets here.

So, because his grades have dropped, I had to take his video games away. My husband made me take the television out of his room almost immediately as he said his kids were never allowed to have a TV in their room. So, I have my son's VCR, DVD, TV and PS2 in my closet just sitting there collecting dust because he is not allowed to have it. He is allowed to maybe play his PS2 on holidays and maybe weekends, but it has to be in the rec room in the basement. He had a bedtime of 10:00 p.m. and he liked to watch WWF, but now, his bedtime was moved to 9:00 p.m. and no WWF. My husband has put blocks on just about every channel on the rec room TV, even the PG-13 and Family channels. No matter what I say to him, he refuses to change anything. My son is a good kid, but I am afraid he is going to hate me for staying with my husband. My husband says he loves me, but I cannot understand how someone can love someone and treat their child this way. I have a very hard time with this because of my stepdad and I find myself thinking of my husband like my stepfather.

Yes, my son is 14 and he makes silly mistakes and tries to get away with staying up a little late, he has never liked sleeping in the dark and I have never made him, but; his teachers have all told me that he is a good kid, he shows respect, many people like him. Can anyone give me some perspective here? I don't like the idea of divorcing again, but I am afraid I am going to hurt my son beyond repair if I stay in this relationship.

The other thing is, is that we have 6 children altogether, 5 of them grown and on their own with 7 grandchildren. All of his grandchildren (of speaking age) call me grandma and all seem to like me and I love them, too. His kids and I get along great. But, he has even yelled at my grown daughter and spanked her children (my grandchildren) and my oldest son, who is in the Army, came home on leave in February, barely speaks to me since he went back to Germany and he has said to my daughter that he thinks our rules are ridiculous, that we are way too strict on my son. He even acted like he didn't like it here when he was here.

I am asking my husband to go to counseling, but he doesn't seem to want to do that. Is there any hope here?

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