13 yr old son of divorced lesbians – issues with ‘new’ girlfriend - FamilyEducation
13 yr old son of divorced lesbians – issues with ‘new’ girlfriend
09/10/2007 at 11:24 AM

I am in a 3 year old relationship with a woman who has children from a pervious relationship.  She is not the biological mom.  It is a difficult situation.  The bio mom is now dating men, the bio dad has a much younger live-in boyfriend and the children’s time is spilt between three houses.  Stability comes from my girlfriend, both financially and emotionally. 


The girl just turned 9 and is a joy to be with.  The son, 13, is just the opposite. 


I am having a very hard time with the situation at hand.  Her son is disrespectful towards me and expects that when he is with her I not be there.  He wishes to have “alone time” with his mom.  But as any typical 13 yr old, he is either on the computer, playing Xbox or watching sports in the playroom.  To me that is not alone time with his mom but because of his in ability to accept that his mom has a new life, it is very rare that I am under the same roof at the same time.  I may see him once a month for 15 min or so. 


He is causing a rift in our relationship.  She is defensive and protective of him.  Expecting me to be ok with whatever is tossed my way.  I try to be supportive but sometimes it feels like our relationship is never going to move to the next level because of her son. 


We have tried to have dinners together or outings to concerts but prior to the events he breaks down crying asking why I have to be there.  One time my girlfriend and I had a day planned of things we needed to get for her new home…. I was scheduled to be at her house to pick her up at 11:30… when I got there her son was still there… his dad due to pick him up at 11 but was running late.  Her son heard me come in the door, went running up to his room crying.  We had an overlap of less than 10 min and he could not handle me. 


I am not sure what I should to do help move him along.  What advice do you have for me?  Should a 13 yr old boy be this upset about this?  What can I do to ease his pain?  And my girlfriends?

Hey woodcrest,


I can imagine that this is a hard situation for you however it sounds like an even more difficult position for this boy.  I am not sure I can follow who is with who and why and I am sure this young man feels the same way.  He has your girlfriend who is his mom but not his bio mom.  He has a bio mom and a bio dad who are both in new different relationships too.  I would be a little tired of all that if I were him.


I would say that you should give him his space.  If he wants time alone with your girlfriend, no matter what they do, then I think you should respect that.  She only has him as a child in her home for a few more years.  I think as a mother or mother-figure then her first obligation is to her children, not to you.


What does everyone else think?







Thank you for your response. It is very confusing… and for someone who does not live it I can imagine it even more so.

The issue is not about giving him time alone with one of his parents or the space to be ok because that has been the case for over 3 years. We have now gotten to a point where he is calling the shots. The adults in this relationship are tried of living multiple lives because he says we have to. He directs everything… tells his sister when to wash her hands, not to stay up to late and says when I can or can not be in the house. It is often said “Hey… let’s play this game, I will be the parent and you will be the kid”… It is really getting to be too much.

I guess my question is how do we make him feel safe with the fact that I am in his mother’s life? How far do we push him?