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Adult Step-children

12 years ago

I have been married to the father of these (2) children for 20 years. How do you deal with children that have never be taught manners or etiquette? My husband had a strange relationship with his children after he had divorced their mother, they were young and he seldom spent parental time with them. He never diciplined them and most visits included a dotting grandmother. He is now reluctant to say anything critical to them. They are in their 40s and have children of their own. They generally visit us twice a year, absolutly trash our home while they are here and after each visit my husband and I have an arguement over the respect of his children towards me and our home. They have also started bringing friends (guys) of the oldest daughter because she wouldn't come unless they could come (they do not sleep together). We got asked once but now it is assumed that boyfriends are welcome. They bring junk food, electronic gadgets (laptops, cell phones, e-books), entertainment (movies, games) by the box and bag full. We have movies and games, the condo has 2 swimming pools, sand volleyball, basketball and tennis courts, a golf course across the street. They will bring 2 large suit cases of clothes, that are strung between two bedrooms and a bathroom. Last weekend they brought the new little dog they have that can jump on a kitchen table, where I found it three times. It was always on my furniture and when I said something about "keeping the dog on the floor". I was told, "We let him on the furniture at home." My husband doesn't like the things the kids do but he would never say anything. He feels we can tolerate anything for a few days a couple of times a year. This last weekend they were here, the house was a wreck, I had gone to church, when I got home, my husband told me friends had called from up the road (20 miles), invited us to lunch, he declined, they said they would stop by after they had eaten. I proceeded to attempt to declutter and straighten the house. I asked the oldest granddauther to "gather the towels, and slick-up the main bathroom", my stepson said, "I need to take a shower". I asked if they could please put away their electronic gadgets that were all over the livingroom . When I walked down the hallway the guest bedroom was a mess. I walked in that room and started making the bed, my husband came in to help then the step-Daughter-in-law came in and said "I can clean this room", I replied "that was okay we would finish the bed". Before leaving the room I picke-up a kleenex off the nightstand and she said in a snippy voice she said "You don't have to pick-up my snotty kleenexes". Through clinched teeth I said "That's okay". When I left the room I heard my husband apologize to the daughter-in-law for my bad attitude!! I lost it, got in the car and drove around for 3 hours!! We have done this dance for 20 years in which I get frustrated when they come, if I say anything am ignored or get smarted back to by the step-children and grandchildren. I tried years ago, while tending a grandchild that was misbehaving to put her in "time out". Her parents came back to our house, packed-up and left because I did that. My husband said it was not my place to dicipline thier child. At the time I didn't realize how far reaching the implication was. I am considering divorce. How does one deal with this situation? We have gone twice to a therapists and she suggested that the visits perhaps not include overnight stays my husband doesn't agree to that "My kids should be welcome in my home."

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