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hurt step-mom

15 years ago

My marriage is on the rocks for many reasons, another "thorn in my side" are the step-kids. I get along with my H 5 kids and 9 grandchildren. I do everything I can to help them, take the kids now and then, get the birthday cards, christmas gifts, all that. My H isn't that interested in interacting with his grandchildren. I've done graduation parties, wedding showers, baby showers, all at my own expense. (even when I've asked for reimbursement, both H and his ex ignore it.)

His daughter is spoiled and selfish. His older son's by his first wife are good men, I can't say a negative thing about them. H has been married twice, three boys with 1st wife, 2 kids with second, 1st wife died in the 60's) but the behavior is like she died last year.

Although, on my birthday I didn't receive one card, from any of them. Some (two) daughter-in-laws have sent BD cards in the past, but nothing this year. I was really hurt. I made it a point to take ALL the kids on camping trips, (so H and I could have time with them) H left early both times, and did very little interacting.

The ex, I've made it a point to get along with her, I've helped her with homework (while she was in school) I've given her 2 kids, money, parties, helped buy their son a car, 5k, a new laptop computer, (he's a great kid) my husband re-pays me by taking the cards I did have and hiding them. (strange behavior) He recently brought this old bracelet she bought him years ago home, the engraving on the thing "love linda" and he's also had nude pictures of her in the house, which I found burried in the file cabinet.

He talks to his daughter, and they discuss his ex, her work, income, how she's doing. Which, in reality why is he so conerned about her? He couldn't stand being married to her, yet he brings all these little reminders into my house.

As much as I try to have a close realtionship with my step-kids, it's almost like he undermines every attempt. "My grandchildren", not "our" he has even lied to his kids about me, just to make me look bad.

he told at least one of his son's that we are in trouble because I have a "gambling problem", he failed to tell them that he's gone through over 250,000 since we've been married, (that's the low figure) filed bankruptcy, and much more. (sold my new truck), all this in less than four years

The problem is, I don't want to air out dirty laundry to the kids, but how do I fix my reputation and tell them the truth without looking like a witch? Or appearing like I'm trying to get even?

I won't be able to leave my H for a while yet, I'm trying to get the money together for a divorce, or separation.

I hate the fact that all these lies are being told about me, and I look like an irresponsible spendthrift. Which is so not me.

Yet, it really hurts when the kids disregard me, and I do so much for them!

I'm ready to write them all off, but I do love the grandchildren, and the parents.

any suggestions as to how to aproach...

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