Step parenting in a pandemic…


I am mad and have been mad all day. I have tried thought downloads, models, and have tried to let the anger be felt. I am still mad.

We live in Arizona and are having a major spike in COVID cases. It is scary, to be honest. Our per-capita infection rate is now higher than the worst hot spot in Italy ever got. My husband’s ex-wife allowed our step daughter to go to a sleepover with TWELVE girls, all sleeping in the same room (the kids are with us this week, so she said yes – apparently my husband agreed, but he always agrees to keep the peace…) I spoke up questioning if it was the wisest decision right now. My husband reassured me it was just our girl and the birthday girl, and I did understand that – we have to live our lives and assume some risk. However, I had morning pick up duty and it was definitely not the case. The mom had 12 teepees set up in the kids playroom and the kids didn’t sleep even a minute. Twelve kids in a small room together, playing all night. I am incredibly uncomfortable with this and now she is staying at our house for the next week. So if she got sick, we all get sick.

To be honest, it is the point of it all. It is a dramatized issue I feel like as a stepmom, I always have to suck it up. Someone makes a decision that has a direct impact on my life and I am not consulted about it, yet I am expected to live with the implications of that decision. Unfortunately, in this case, this is my health we are talking about and this isn’t just a “oh yeah, i signed the kids up for volleyball every weekend so that means your weekends too”. I have put my own job at risk by forcing the issue of staying at home to work while my office opens back up and my boss wanted all of us in the office, and in one careless decision made by my husband and his ex, all of that can be put in jeopardy.

I am beyond upset and my husband just keeps saying ‘well i didn’t know and i agree it was a bad decision.’ I don’t know what I expect him to say. I think I am just mad and want to be mad. But that isn’t helping. UGH.

I am also really upset because i am working full-time at home, my husband had to go to work today, so he had me on pick up duty this morning from said sleepover. The mom said the kids had to be picked up between 9 and 10. When I showed up at 915, she was nowhere near ready. She had stuff everywhere, and she started doing another craft project. It took me nearly 30 min to get her out of there, and I was late for a meeting / zoom call as a result. It is disrespectful. Not only that, but I was meeting a friend to pick up her dog (I am dog sitting for her while she has to work a few days a week) and I made her late. So that decision to not have the kids ready, even though she asked the kids to be picked up between 9 and 10, impacted multiple lives and that is BS. If they weren’t ready, I could have picked her up at 11 when I had a break from meetings.

She is 10 and a disaster from not sleeping. My husband keeps waiting on her, and I refuse to. I get she is tired, but at some point, she has to start learning the notion of consequences (something a guilty divorced dad, my husband, does not like to teach).

So I am just disengaging and taking myself out of the equation, but my husband knows I am mad and won’t let me be mad. He is trying to tell me to let it go. Maybe I should. Maybe I just want to hear that it is OK for me to be mad. Because at some point, he has to start understanding that this isn’t just him and his ex wife anymore, the decisions the make every day have an impact on my life.

I want to move past it AND I want to be mad. HELP.