My Son’s Relationship With His Father’s Girlfriend

I think I have two separate, but related issues with regards to my son’s relationship with his father’s girlfriend. This woman has been in my children’s lives for about 1.5 years. She lives in South America so they don’t see each other very often but when they do it is usually a vacation, so 24/7 for a week or two etc.

I definitely felt pangs of jealousy but I was mostly happy that she was nice to them and that they liked her. The other day, however, I went through my 11 year old son’s phone and read their text thread. I have to say that I was shocked. They had a very long text exchange – longer than any text exchange with his grandparents, cousins, or even friends other than his very best friend (and they have only started texting less than a year ago). The exchange was her constantly telling him how much she loves and misses him and ONLY wants to be with him. There was a lot of love you, love you more, love you the most etc.

In fact that is pretty much the entire thread but way over the top. Then there was one line that I found very inappropriate. She wrote to him “Finally someone understands the purpose of my existence. Thank you.”

That struck me as something you would say to a lover not the 11 year old child of your boyfriend.

I tried to hold it all in but he knew I went through his phone and he could tell I was on edge and he pulled it out of me. Once I started it came flooding out and then I was ashamed for oversharing with my child. It wasn’t his fault. I don’t know what to do .

I obviously have a manual for the girlfriend and how she SHOULD behave towards my children. She has her own children so I thought she would have understood mom code, like girls code a bit better and not overstep… but in my mind she has crossed the line. I know that if someone did this to her kids she would not be happy. I also know that if I had a boyfriend who texted with my daughter like that, my ex husband would go ballistic.

The two issues here are that:

1) I have to get ok with the fact that my son loves this woman to the degree that he does. He once chose to go over to his father’s house to be with her (she had just arrived from Uruguay and he had not seen her in 6 months) on my parenting night and that was one of the most painful experiences of my life… but I held it in. I know it was my thinking around it. I know I was thinking he prefers her and he is rejecting me just like his father did.

2) I have to get ok with the fact that this woman is going to behave in ways that I do not agree with and think are weird and creepy. I think thoughts like, “she should know better, I bet she is partly doing this just to be hurtful towards me.” The spiraling I am doing is using up brain juice that should be going towards my impossible goal!!!! I have done models and feel temporarily better but then I remember and start spiraling again. Help!!!!