How do you deal with a jealous ex???

(68 Posts)
PoppyPrincess Thu 22-Nov-12 13:37:13

I've been with DP for 3 years and he has an ex who he has 2 kids with.
She's always been a bit of a pain in the bum but since I got pregnant last year she's got gradually worse, she nags him over tiny little things, makes up issues just so she can have a go at him, creates situations so that she can try and make him chose his kids over me and our baby etc. She's so nasty to him, if he doesn't do what she wants then she threatens to stop him seeing the kids/go to the CSA/ even go to the police if one of us says or does something she doesn't like.
It's all just got out of hand now to the point where she has now said that she won't let me see her children because I am 'mentally ill'. I have suffered with post natal depression for a few weeks which has now been treated and I'm on the mend but apparently I'm 'a danger to her children'.
She could have only found out that I have been ill by looking at my medical records through work which I am currently getting looked in to.
Everything is just such a mess at the moment, we're missing the kids, they're missing us, they're missing out on seeing their baby sister and she's making the kids think that their Dad doesn't want to see them now that he's got a new family which isn't true at all.
I wrote her an email asking her to leave DP alone and stop bullying him and to start thinking about all this is doing to the kids. Apparently she went to the police about the email and they are supposedly coming to see me, so I rang the police to check when they were coming so I could make sure I was in and they have no record of any complaint, she's just completely lost the plot!

She left DP and I believe that she doesn't want him back but I definitely think that she's jealous of what we have got and trying to ruin it for us. She's trying to break our family up every weekend by saying that he can only have the kids if he takes them to his Mum's.
It's just pathetic and it needs to come to an end but trying to talk to her is like talking to a brick wall.
It seems that she can't handle the fact that he's happy again and that he doesn't need her and that she can't control him any more. Everything with this woman is about control and money.
We will take legal action to get proper access to the kids again if we need to but we'd prefer to get it sorted without the need of the courts.
What can we do? I'm happy to let DP see the kids on his own for now but long term that isn't going to work so it will need sorting.
Anybody had similar problems with ex's? How did you deal with it?

PoppyPrincess Fri 23-Nov-12 10:48:48

A) makes it look like she doesn't need help and b) makes you n

PoppyPrincess Fri 23-Nov-12 10:55:06

Aarrgghhh stupid smart phone!
It makes you not warm to her or want to sympathise.

From what DP has said it looks like now that she is spending more time with the kids that she's actually coping better, maybe it's made her step up and take more responsibility for them.
She's said herself that the kids behaviour has improved and when I've seen them at school recently they seem happy and well groomed.

missymoomoomee Fri 23-Nov-12 11:06:55

Try and look at it from her side as well. You sound so angry and wronged, that is probably how she feels too.

She was wrong to go to the hospital, of course she was, and I don't condone that for a second. But I can see why she was angry, she was due the maintenence payment on that day, she didn't get it because her ex had something more important going on, but in her eyes his children should be the most important people in his life. It has to be hard to adjust to the fact that he has other priorities now.

How do you know her HV has referred her to parenting classes?

Have you reported her to her work about the fact you think she looked at your medical records? If so what do you hope to achieve by that? She could very well have heard from someone else about your PND and if you have been to her work before knowing the full facts that is going to have a negative impact on everyone including the children. If you have been to her work and it gets proved that she didn't look at your records it makes you look vindictive.

You keep on saying how the kids have more fun with you and what a shit mum she is, this attitude is something you need to stop. Kids pick up on things like looks, snarky comments and attitudes. It is so out of order calling her a shit Mum.

You say she palms the kids off on 'anyone' 3 nights a week. Really I doubt very much she goes out 3 nights a week, and the people who are 'anyone' to you are probably very good friends of hers.

You can't blame her for him being in debt, given that the house is on the market and in his name I assume he will be getting at least 50% of the proceeds from the house so its only right and fair that he pays 50% of the mortgage. This is a seperate issue from maintenence.

You say everything is about control and money. Well he does have to support his children and she has every right to maintenence. The control, I assume, is coming from her not wanting the children to see you. You have made a bit of a rod for your own back there by sending a message to her, you say it wasn't nasty, but then you say she threatened you with the police. Be honest, with yourself if not us, that there must have been a nasty element to it, you were obviously, and understandably upset after her showing up at the hospital. This could now be used by her to prove that you don't like her and therefore its not the best thing for you to be around her children.

I understand your feelings and its hard to see beyond your own viewpoint sometimes but you need to try and see whare she is coming from too, its the only way this can move forward.

Xalla Fri 23-Nov-12 11:27:52

I think there are very few true 'shit Mums'. Most of us just do the best we can.

theredhen Fri 23-Nov-12 11:37:38

You can do the best you can and still be a "shit mum/dad".

Sometimes people need to recognise where they can improve and focus on that rather than causing as much hassle as possible for the other parent / people in the family.

missymoomoomee Fri 23-Nov-12 11:47:55

Tbf thered I think in this situation the hassle is going both ways, and I don't think the, seemingly, bias view of the op is the whole picture.

theredhen Fri 23-Nov-12 11:54:15

There are always two sides to a story but I think we have to be careful not to make assumptions on what that other side is.

PoppyPrincess Fri 23-Nov-12 12:28:43

Missy - I can assure you, that 1 email I sent her has been the only contact I have ever had with her. There has been no threats, no hassle from us.
DP wouldn't say boo to a goose, in fact he bows down to her every demand.
The woman is a total nutter who can't handle the fact that she's been replaced.
This is a woman who had a go at their grandma for buying them a sticker book! A woman who says DP couldn't see the kids with his mum there cos ''they might plan to do something with them'' yeh cos she's a terrible grandmother who takes them to swimming lessons and to things like Disney on Ice etc.
I'm sure in her mind she can justify her reasons for what she's doing and her version would be something on the lines of ''I need to make sure my kids are safe, I need to know who they're with and where they are at all times'' that's what she has been saying.
She can't control certain elements of what is going on (like DP moving on) so she is doing everything in her power to control what she can.

Jemma1111 Mon 26-Nov-12 16:21:40

They're missing out on seeing their baby sister you say, why aren't they seeing her then ? your Dp could take your daughter to his mum's to see them, surely. It seems like YOU are being vindictive to his kids by keeping your child away from them.

And as another poster said, it sounds like you are jealous of his ex and thats why you can't stop sticking your nose into their business.
Also, you are accusing the ex of looking up about your medical history, what proof do you have ? none.

And how do you know what the ex does with HER children every week ? are you there ? no.

If I were you I would butt out.

PoppyPrincess Mon 26-Nov-12 17:48:49

Jemma - no DP has only been allowed to see kids at XP's house and she wouldn't let him take baby with him.
This weekend she has now moved the goal posts once again, he is now allowed to see them at his Mum's but still baby isn't allowed to be there cos she doesn't want her kids to have to share their dad.
But it's me being vindictive is it?

We know what she does with her kids because they can talk, we ask them what they have done and its always that they've been at their Grandma's (usually without mum), or they've just stayed at home or every now and again they'll say they went to a play centre. In all the time I've known them they've never once told us about a day out. She goes on holiday twice a year herself (once with her sisters, once with her bf) but she's never even taken the kids for a weekend in a caravan. The only holidays they've had are with us, their grandparents or aunty.

And as for me 'keep' sticking my nose in, in 3 years I've only had contact with her ONCE. And that was because it was involving me, when somebody turns up at A&E screaming at my partner whilst I'm ill it then becomes my business. Also, before I sent that email me n DP discussed it and we decided together that I should send it.

You wouldn't believe the grief she gives DP over nothing and all the time I have always just turned a blind eye to it, like when she kicked off because he left the kids with his mum for 2 hours because we had a hospital appointment for an ECV (when they turn baby), apparently I should have gone by myself, despite the fact that I was told to go with someone as I wouldn't be able to drive cos of the drug they give and there was a risk of me needing an emergency c-section if baby got distressed. The appointment was only given to me the day before so instead of him telling XP that he couldn't have the kids he arranged for his mum to have them but no that wasn't good enough.

Nearly every week she'll think of something to kick off over and every time I've always kept my mouth shut n stayed nice to her when I've seen her, but her turning up at A&E was just the straw that broke the camel's back.

I just think its so funny how people can read something and make a whole load of assumptions from it.

Jemma1111 Mon 26-Nov-12 21:25:53

I still stand by the fact that I believe its YOU who is jealous of HER.

His ex left HIM 3 years ago and you have said that you believe she doesn't want your dp back, you go on to say that 'she can't handle the fact he's moved on and is happy', 'she can't handle the fact she's been replaced' and 'she can't handle the fact the kids have more fun with him than they do with her'

Honestly?, she'd hardly be causing trouble if she ended the relationship, surely she would be glad that her ex had found a woman who was good with her children?, why would she stop you seeing them after all this time if you hadn't given her cause for concern?.

Why have you never liked her?
Why haven't you answered another posters question asking you how you know she has been referred to parenting classes by her Hv?

Why haven't you answered my question about what proof do you have that she has looked through your medical notes? , maybe your dp has told her?

Theres two sides to this story and it would be interesting to know hers, I don't think she sounds like a nutter btw

missymoomoomee Mon 26-Nov-12 21:49:51

I have to say I agree with Jemma 100%

You need to step back and look at this from an outside perspective, if these things are coming across to us then what is coming across to her? The first step to trying to resolve the problem is to acknowledge it.

PoppyPrincess Mon 26-Nov-12 22:43:27

She has stopped me from seeing the kids because she has found out that I have had mental health problems, she therefore thinks that I may a risk around her children. DP has not told her, he has questioned her about why she thinks that (over texts which I have seen) and she has said 'people have told her'. Which ppl? Nobody knows and she doesn't know anybody who knows me. She knew I was in A&E and she works at the hospital, so what would you think if you were me? I should find out soon as I have logged a complaint with the hospital and they can check who has been in my medical records.

I know that she's been referred for parenting classes because she told DP, she struggles with their behaviour (it can often be challenging, especially from DSS) so her and DP discuss it quite a bit and in one of those conversations she said her HV had referred her for parenting classes.

I have never liked her because of the way she treats DP, the way she speaks to him, the way she uses the kids as weapons etc. the things she has stopped DP seeing the kids for over the years is just ridiculous!

Yes she didn't want to be with DP anymore but I defo think it's a case of 'I don't want you but I don't want anybody else to have you either'. Why else would she have a problem with her kids seeing their baby sister?

I don't really see exactly what I'm supposed to be jealous of? Yes I'm quite jealous that she's financially better off than us, I'm jealous of the fact that she gets lie ins every weekend. But that's where it ends.
Yes I've been depressed but that was purely a medical thing, despite feeling low I have got everything I have ever wanted and I'm for the first time in my life I am soooo excited about my future.
I do actually quite pity the woman because its clear that she is obviously very unhappy.

You can think what you like but I know what is going on, so do our families. Even HER own family have fallen out with her over it, because they're fed up with her messing with the kids heads.

Jemma1111 Tue 27-Nov-12 06:35:35

Just because she works at the hospital doesn't mean she has been through your records !

You don't KNOW that she doesn't know people who know you , its a small world and gossip gets spread around when you wouldn't expect it to . Also your dp may have mentioned it to her and now is telling you he hasn't because he knows you don't want him to tell her !

I honestly think you are looking for ways to make her sound like a complete bitch and I don't believe you are pitying her if your calling her a nutter !
As I said before , step back , her children are her business and your partners business , not yours !

theredhen Tue 27-Nov-12 06:46:50

Jemma,

My dp ex left my dp, she is the bitter difficult one, she is the one who upsets the children and she is definitely the one who is upset dp has moved on. She left him for someone else and has never found long term happiness with anyone since. I know other dads who were left and have seen very similar behaviour from their ex's too. sad

fluffygal Tue 27-Nov-12 07:00:59

I think you have every right to make a complaint to the hospital. If it turns out she didn't look at your records, then they need to look into who has told her about your depression as they have breached confidentiality, its a serious offence. If I did that at work I would be sacked.

You are getting a hard time on this thread, I don't know why but on most stepmum threads OPs are never believed and are always portrayed as jealous or vindictive. Some of your comments haven't helped you (calling her a nutter and jealous!) But really there ARE women out there like this! Not all birthmums are saints.

There's a difference between posting on MN about your feelings and thoughts and expressing them in real life. Telling OP to butt out is ridiculous, she has only contacted the BM once and for a very good reason!

Xalla Tue 27-Nov-12 07:50:23

Of course you have a reason to file a complaint with the hospital if you suspect your medical records have been accessed by someone who had no right looking. I'm not sure you'll get the answers you want though - employees share passwords regularly in the NHS and just because the system says so and so's password was used, it won't mean it was them looking at your records. Well that's the way it worked in the hosp I worked at 5 years ago. Things may have improved.

I think there are more supportive sites for step-mums than Mumsnet. There's an American one called Steptalk which has an increasing number of UK members. I'd recommend reposting there. I also think you're being treated harshly here.

Families Need Fathers is a good forum for your DP to join too - loads of very helfpul and legally informed Dads on there. My DH gets a lot of support from them and is an active member himself.

Good luck.

NotaDisneyMum Tue 27-Nov-12 08:17:55

Jemma There are women who have left a relationship/marriage whose expectation is that their ex will remain single, as that is the best way for them to support the DCs (and the ex) after the split.

I know several women like this, one of whom demanded that her Barrister seek a court order that her DCs should spend no time with their Dad if he ever entered into another relationship - Dad even offered to keep the DCs and any future girlfriend apart but that wasn't good enough for her - as far as she was concerned, her ex would fail his DCs if he ever moved on.

We obviously only have the OPs side of the story - but in my experience, it is perfectly credible and should not be disbelieved for the reasons you have given.

PoppyPrincess Tue 27-Nov-12 08:33:20

Thank you. I have been giving things a lot more thought last night and this morning and I've started to see that her problem isn't really with me, it's more with DP and the way she perceives the situation which tbh DP hasn't helped by sometimes using me or baby as an excuse when she starts demanding things.

She never used to be that bad until once when the kids left some clothes at our house and she wanted DP to take them back that evening at 10pm. He'd had a couple of glasses of wine with our tea but rather than saying that he said he couldn't cos I was out and he was babysitting my DS (I was still pregnant at this point).
So she saw that as his new family are more important to him than his original family and that thought just won't shift.
Like the other week we'd been to visit some of my family who live in a different city, we were on our way back to pick kids up for the usual time when she rang to ask if he could pick them up an hour early so that they didn't have to go with her for her nail appointment, when DP said we couldn't get there an hour before and explained why her response was ''so once again my kids are suffering because of your new family?''
It's silly little things like that and she just blows them out of proportion, but as I've said, DP prob hasn't helped by using us an excuse on occasions.

Maybe she didn't look at my medical records, maybe she's just guessing, who knows. But I think it's just an excuse so that she can demand that DP sees the kids without me there, so that he can prove that the kids are still as important to him as they always have been. Which of course they are, just because you have a new baby it doesn't mean you love your existing ones any less. But if he gives in to her demands it's just going to give the message that she can still call all the shots.

AmberLeaf Tue 27-Nov-12 08:35:44

She knew I was in A&E but nobody knows what was wrong with me, she'd not seen me so she couldn't have guessed by that, she doesn't know any of my family or friends so the only way she can know is by looking at my medical records

It is very possible that your DP told her.

My EX tells me unprompted, all manner of things about his current partner that Im sure she wouldn't be happy with him telling me!

PoppyPrincess Tue 27-Nov-12 09:29:25

Amber - if DP had told her then why do her texts to DP say ''people have told me'' not ''YOU told me''?

AmberLeaf Tue 27-Nov-12 09:48:38

No idea, but I think as she is an NHS employee she would be aware that it would be a breach of confidentiality and that you would assume she had looked at your records.

Maybe your DP told someone who told her?

I agree 100% that your depression shouldn't be a reason for her to say you can't be around her children though, lots of mums have post natal depression! If she took that to court they would send her packing.

PoppyPrincess Tue 27-Nov-12 10:37:20

How she found out is pretty irrelevant, we can suspect all we like but it's unlikely that we'll ever find out as I doubt she would have been so stupid to look at my notes under her own password.

It just feel at the moment that its just one thing after another, there's always something she's giving DP grief over and we feel like we're forever walking on egg shells in fear that she'll kick off over something. I can't even discipline the kids cos they might tell their mum and she might not like it, I worry about making sure I give them healthy meals cos I don't want them going home and telling her they've had junk food, I feel like we've got to do something fun every weekend because I don't want them going home telling them we've spent the day in Ikea or doing the gardening etc. that's how daft it has become, it's like she's judging everything we do, we make a wrong move and all hell breaks loose.
I'm dreading Xmas because last year she was questioning why my DS got a bike AND a scooter, why didn't her kids get a scooter as well as a bike? Ermmm that'll be because the scooter was off HIS dad!
I've noticed DP practically ignores our baby whilst the kids are here and I suspect it's for similar reasons, I think he doesn't want them telling mum that dad doesn't play with them cos he's too bothered about baby.

I just wish she'd trust us, we try our best to treat all the kids fairly and every weekend we try and make sure they get some time alone with dad and also some time with all of us together. We're trying our best but it feels like our best is never going to be good enough.

theredhen Tue 27-Nov-12 12:10:22

Poppy,

You are walking on eggshells trying to appease her for the sake of a quiet life. Ask yourself this, Is it working? Are you getting a quiet life? Are the step kids well adjusted and happy because of you walking on eggshells?

I suspect the answers are "no".

The ex might threaten to not abide by a court order, she might make life a bit harder for a while but I can guarantee you that long term, if you are true to yourselves and the children that you will benefit.

You are trying to keep her happy and failing, and in the process are teaching the children that her behaviour is acceptable and that she is "in charge and in control". The children will lose respect for you because of it.

Like a child having a tantrum, she will up the ante when she realises her current methods aren't working, but eventually she will start to see that she can't control your lives and you are a family unit in your own right. She might not like it, but that's her problem and not yours or the children's.

As long as you do the best you can for the step kids (if you have your own DS, I'm sure he gets junk food sometimes or goes to Ikea with you and you know you're not a bad parent for doing so), then you can hold your head up high. You might do things DIFFERENTLY from DP ex but that doesn't mean you are wrong or indeed that she is wrong. Sure, the ex will kick up a stink when she realises she is losing power, but you will deal with it as you do now, the only difference is you won't feel so controlled and manipulated.

If for no other reason, you are allowing your DP to treat your baby as second class in your own home and you must not let that happen because of his ex. If you allow that to happen then she has got exactly what she wants hasn't she?

PoppyPrincess Tue 27-Nov-12 12:58:52

Redhen you have totally hit the nail on the head with everything you have just said.
I think you're right that she probably will get worse before she gets better but I do want her to stop the control that she has over our family, I just want us to be able to get on with things.
I wouldn't say that dp treats baby as second class but he's definitely not as attentive and tends to leave most of her care to me, whereas we usually split things pretty equally. I don't think he knows he's doing it and I've not said anything to him because he gets nagged enough by the ex, I don't want him feeling like he's getting it from all angles.
DP and his mum are going to see a solicitor on fri, it would usually be me going with him so it's a bit of a relief that his mum is getting so involved, it means I can try and take a step back and let them sort it. Detach, detach, detach.

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