Is it okay to back away?

I am a caretaker for my 5 year old son that has cerebral palsy. My boyfriend and his 7 year old son moved in recently and his son is disrespectful, throws tantrums, lies, and is a bully. My boyfriend works long hours and isn't home much, so I care for his son but he refuses to listen and fights me on everything. I don't know what to do. His dad tries to help and disciplines him everytime he misbehaves but his son continues to act out to the point where I don't want to take care of him anymore. The more time spent with him is less time I spend with my own son who needs my attention. I am stressed out every day now to where I am sick to my stomach. What should I do?

Is It OK To?
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Comments ( 24 ) Sort: best | oldest
  • I understand that you want to make the relationship work with your boyfriend, but he may need to work less hours to help you more around the house with his son. If your getting to the point of feeling sick to your stomach it will only get worse not better. Best of luck to you in the future.

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  • You grab that little fucker by the hair and let him know you're all done with his shit, and pull nice and hard too. His toys and other shit go out the window until he knocks it off as well.

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  • Maybe he's being that way because he's upset. After all you're not his real mother. Try to talk to him or do some snooping to find out what his true feelings are.

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    • I found he has been purposely causing all these problems because he doesn't want to share attention with my son so he has been absorbing as much as possible. I am currently infuriated.

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      • He’s doing that because he doesn’t have a mother. Maybe you could try to be his mother and he’ll start to calm down.

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        • He DOES have a mother, he just doesn't live with her!

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          • He does have a mother and sees her every other weekend and splits holidays and breaks.

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            • Oh okay. I really don’t know why he would be acting that way then. Just try to stay open if he wants to talk. Sorry youre going through all that :/

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  • Maybe put your foot down and tell your boyfriend that if his son doesn't change then he'll have to pay for a nanny to take care of his son instead.

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    • I told him that I will be respected in my home and if it doesn't have to change. Then I get guilt tripped because they have nowhere else to live.

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      • How did it get to be your responsibility to provide a home for him and his son? If he's working such long hours he could afford his own place. I really think you're being exploited in this situation, to the detriment of your own son and yourself

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      • Well you shouldn't feel guilty at all, it is your home and you're not being respected by either your boyfriend or his son. It's not like you're trying to kick them out because they're late on their rent or something, you just stood up for yourself because you and your son's lives have been negatively impacted and your boyfriend is refusing to do anything about it.

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        • Yesterday, I found he has been purposely causing all these problems because he doesn't want to share attention with my son so he has been absorbing as much as possible. I am currently infuriated. I told the boy and his dad that the behavior is unacceptable and is not allowed in my home. The boy spent the weekend grounded. 2 days. He hated not having the attention or anything to do so he spent a good few hours screaming...he has no remorse or empathy. He just does not care.

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          • The responsibility for this lies with your boyfriend, not his son. I understand why, but you're seeing him as the problem rather than his father. I'm not saying the boy should be allowed to get away with disruptive behaviour, but he obviously has problems and you're being left to deal with them.

            I feel sorry for you, your son and the boy and I'm wondering how long you intend to put up with this situation, which isn't any good for anyone.

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  • I don't have much to say except don't be afraid to put your own flesh and blood first.

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  • Assuming you knew the boy before your boyfriend moved in with you, were there no indications he could or would be a problem? How long have you all been living together? If he only started behaving like this after moving in with you there's something going on with him that needs attention. Does the boy's mother have ocntact with him or is he relying on you for most of his needs? If so, that's not fair on you or your own son.

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    • I have known him for 7 months now. The boy was having problems before moving in but has gotten worse since living here. His dad has majority custody so the boy sees his mother every other weekend and split holidays. At his mother's house, he has a stepfather that is abusive and foul-mouthed (that is why dad got majority custody) and when he comes back to my home, his behavior worsens. I am just so frustrated because I am not his parent so there is only so much that I can do.

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      • I feel for you in this situation, but I also feel for this little boy. It sounds as if he has a lot to be angry about and you're the one copping it, which is not fair to you or to your own son, but it's not the boy's fault he's in this situation.

        Can you sit down with his dad and tell him how you're feeling about it, without hanging shit on the kid or him? It's really up to him to take some responsibility and not leave it up to you. I'm guessing he wouldn't have been granted majority custody if it weren't for you being with him to care for his son?

        I don't agree that not being the boy's parent should restrict you in what you can do, given you seem to have almost sole responsibility for him when he's not with his mother.

        You say his father "disciplines" him after he's been behaving badly: what form does this discipline take? If it's anything like what his stepfather dishes out that's only going to make the situation worse.

        Does his school have a counsellor or chaplain you could talk to about this? It seems to me that it's a very difficult (if not impossible) problem for you to try and solve by yourself.

        The only thing I can come up with from my own personal experience is that when my daughter (then 5 1/2) was very upset and angry after the family court awarded custody to her father, at the suggestion of a friend I used to say to her that it's ok to be angry, but it's not ok to ......... whatever ..... hit me and so on, said calmly and firmly and with love. It worked eventually, but it did take a while. It is ok for him to be angry, it's the behavior that's the problem, just as with adults.

        Good luck, I hope you can get some support somewhere

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        • I have suggested Behavioral Therapy and getting the boy to see a doctor but dad just started a new job and since I am not the parent, everything has to be consented by the dad. On top of that, my own son goes to school 4 hours a day, 5 days a week, and therapy twice a week right after school and on those days, I pick the boy up after my son's therapy. The boy didn't have a bed of his own so I went out and bought him one. When they moved in, he didn't have many clothes so I bought him some. Every day, I am sitting with him for about 3 hours fighting him on homework (we're home by 3:15) and when he is done, there is enough time flr a couple chores and then dinner is being made. My son keeps wanting my attention but the boy is taking that away from him and it makes me feel so horrible.

          I do not allow hitting of any kind in our home. As I said, my own son has Cerebral Palsy so my home life isn't typical. I teach manners and kindness in my home. I teach whatever I can to prepare my son and my boyfriends son for the world.

          When the boy was living with his mother, his stepdad would hit him and at one time tazed him. Yes. Tazed. When the dad called the cops, the mom threw the tazzer away and the stepdad lied even though there were marks on the boys foot. The boy sees his stepfather calling his mother a fat cow and moos at her or threatens to hit her if she doesn't do what he wants when he wants. So when the boy comes back, he almost displays the same behavior. His disrespect is towards women and kids. His dad and I moved him to a school closer to where I live cause I was driving 3+ hours taking him to his old school and he was getting in trouble there bullying kids. Headbutting, pulling hair, kicking, hitting, pushing. He was getting 4 referrals to the office in a month. The last referral at the previous school, the boy hit and pushed 5 kids in one day! We are at such loss on how to handle all of this. I personally thinks the boy needs to be around professionals because he won't listen to me or let me help him. Yesterday he kicked a girl at school.

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          • Surely your boyfriend doesn't work 24/7 with no time to give consent to treatment for the boy? Although I'd be thinking that if he can't even find time for this when his son is obviously such an emotional mess and his gf has far too much on her plate, he's part of the problem.

            I don't see how this is going to change unless the boy's father takes some responsibility instead of leaving it all to you.

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            • I agree. Dad leaves at 5:30 in the morning and doesn't come home until 9pm or 10pm. We're also supposed to be splitting all the bills but thay doesn't happen. There is always a reason for him. When it comes to the boys needs and finances, it is expected for me to pick up that slack because I work from home.

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  • I have no helpful advice with this situation but I do feel for you and your son.

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