Hard time living with boyfriend and his kids
Hi! I'm living with my boyfriend and his two kids, under 5yo. He has the custody and the mother isn't really present, he basically raised them himself. She only sees them a few hours every week, if she doesn't make up so excuse and cancel. She doesn't do anything for them besides spoiling them with sweets and toys those few hours. They come back frustrated, agitated, and pick up all sorts of bad habits/words. Nevertheless, the kids love her and are always excited to see her. When I moved in I knew how my life would change. I'm Basically living for them as if they were my own and I try to do all I can so my partner can relax (he's Job is pretty demanding) and we still get some time together. It's all of their everyday needs (wake up with them, cleaning, taking care of laundry, food, meals, changing diapers and their "accidents", taking care of them when they're sick) and I also get involved in their education (I follow my partner's ways) . Both kids have always accepted me and listened and we've grown close to each other. Theyve come to rely on me too when they need something. On a very few occasions over the past year, they've told me that 'i was a mommy' . It only happened very few times, normally they call me by my name. However, even though I should feel lucky but I can't seem to feel happy about it and I don't know why. Seeing that we are close but I'm not their mother and being reminded of it just makes me sad. Sometimes I resent it too, it's even hard to see pictures of them when they were babies (before I met him), mothers day is a sad day too, going to kindergarten and seeing other parents is hard. I feel extremely frustrated every time my partner interacts with his ex (even though it's limited to the basics as she doesn't get involved nor coparents). I try to control it but it's hard and it's not about him nor her (I never interact with her besides a few hellos). I also resent the fact that he had kids with her, and I cant seem to féel fully happy whenever we share fun time because the kids aren't ours but his, and we don't share them (he has stated he would like kids in the future,although Im afraid he will change his mind once they grow up a bit and he'd prefer to have time for just us). Sometimes it's like I feel I have no right to be happy for them, to act like a parent, to care for them, even to say I miss them or love them, or take pictures with them. Anyway, I don't know how to change the way I feel, my partner is 100% supportive and always tried his best to make me happy but I don't know how to get rid of this resentment nor where it comes from. I know it's not the kids nor what I do, it's my own choice and Id do anything for them, overall I am very happy, I just hate feeling frustrated or resentful sometimes. Any advice?