Avatar universal

My ex-husband died, his widow wants weekend visits with my girls, 12 and 14.

My ex lived only and hour and a half away but only asked to see the girls once, sometimes twice a year and never called. After he married again, she was the one I had to talk to about child support and visits.
He passed away Feb 28 and she has moved to another house. She let my girls know that she decorated a room for them in her house and to please come and spend the night soon.
I just don't think this is a good idea. It's bad enough that she constantly refers to my girls as hers on social media when she barely knows them but I don't want her to think this is something that is going continue.
Is she right to expect this when they rarely want to see the children when he was alive?
3 Responses
Sort by: Helpful Oldest Newest
Avatar universal
Could she be lonesome after losing a husband who perhaps took a lot of care. It sounds like the new house has more room for company than the old. Anyhow, you have no obligation to feed her need. How do the kids feel about this. How would you handle the distance?
Helpful - 0
134578 tn?1693250592
People do funny things right after someone dies, you'd never recognize it as grieving. If your ex's wife loved your ex (although I will say from the way you described him that he doesn't sound that lovable) it's possible that she feels his daughters are the last living connection she has to him. Also, you never know what went on behind the scenes. Especially since she was the one who communicated with you all along about the girls' visits and child support, she might have been the main reason your ex saw the girls at all. She might just be a loving person (evidence: she put up with your ex) and if your husband wasn't being something of a foot-dragger on the issue, would have had a more complete stepmom relationship with the girls all along.

In your shoes, I'd ask the girls. They're old enough to know if they like her or not and how they would feel to visit with her. If they would be glad to see her, set up something like all of them meeting at a fun restaurant for lunch or going to a movie, nothing as lengthy as spending the night. (Unless, of course, they say they would really, really like it.)

You might feel irritated because you feel like she's taking credit for the children you raised, but maybe she's just trying to be a stepmother. Probably once your ex died, she is not legally their stepmom any more (likely the term would be something like former stepmother), but my stepmother is still my stepmother in my eyes even thought my dad has died.  She acts the same way she always did, comes to family parties (even ones where my mother is -- they get along), and she even paid for my nephew's last year of college (after my dad died). Your girls are getting older and have their own relationships with people, and have the right to see their friends and people who care about them, unless you think the person is actually dangerous to them. I realize this makes you grit your teeth, but they will soon enough be able to see her (if they want) whether you have an opinion about it or not. It might help if you get yourself in a mindset of thinking of her a slightly overbearing aunt, and making your judgements accordingly.  :)
Helpful - 0
In short, I wouldn't continue to blame her for "their" seeming lack of interest in the children when your ex was alive. I see no evidence in your story that she was the source of the disinterest, in fact, if she had been disinterested, you never would have heard from her about visits and child support. She might be allied with you about the girls more than you know. I sure wouldn't treat her as an enemy. And that is especially true if the girls like her. Kids need caring adults in their lives, the more the better.
She and I do get along and I do you understand her side of it because he was married before me and I was the stepmother to the older kids. I did not communicate on with the first wife but insisted that he did and I kept on him about visits until I finally realized that he really didn't want to and hadn't before we married. He made a good show if being the doting father while we were dating and the same for #3. I made sure the child support was paid to #1 and #3 made sure it was paid to me. #3 and I each had some eye opening revelations after we marrying him.
My girls are pretty indifferent about seeing her so I think the best thing would be to see here sometimes when we go to see their grandmother and leave it at that.
Thanks for you input
973741 tn?1342342773
Hi there.  I'm sorry about your ex, father to your kids.  That's so hard on them to lose a parent!  Even a distant parent.  I can understand your feelings and how this is awkward.  No, you have zero obligation to send them to visit her. But how do they feel about it?  What do you think her motive is? Is she trying to be loving to them?  Having someone love our kids is never a bad thing.  Could she do that by just coming to an event to watch like if they are in a play or play a sport or in the school band?  Can they write to one another rather than having over nights?  I think you should check in with your girls to see casually how they feel about it.  But no, you do not have to do anything with the wife of your ex after he's deceased.  Zero obligation to her.  
Helpful - 0
Thanks for your response. My girls ar now 4 and 15 and have, as I said, very little communication with their father or his wife. We visit d her a couple of weeks ago when we e went to see his mother. I would not have a problem with a few visits if they had made an effort for a relationship b fore his death but he was really more like a distant uncle than a father. His older kids are closer to his brother than to him. I know there is no legal obligation but don't feel that there is a moral one either considering the lack of relationship. I guess I just ne see yo know that I'm not just being the bitchy first wife.
No, I don't think so either.  I really don't.  I think you can safely cut ties with no worries.  You have every right to conduct things as you see fit and make things easier on yourself.  And if a relationship with the older kids makes sense, keep that going.  Those are half siblings and that could turn into a meaningful relationship down the road.  I have a 15 year old and wow, that's a rough age.  lol  We've got some struggles this summer!  I hope your daughter is doing alright after losing her dad.  Such a sad thing!  Was his death a shock?  If she in particular isn't interested, then definitely don't worry about it.  The step mom can write letters and cards which is a lost art but always appreciated. They can still keep in touch without over nights if they so choose.  hugs
Have an Answer?

You are reading content posted in the Relationships Community

Top Relationships Answerers
13167 tn?1327194124
Austin, TX
3060903 tn?1398565123
Learn About Top Answerers
Didn't find the answer you were looking for?
Ask a question
Popular Resources
How do you keep things safer between the sheets? We explore your options.
Can HIV be transmitted through this sexual activity? Dr. Jose Gonzalez-Garcia answers this commonly-asked question.
A list of national and international resources and hotlines to help connect you to needed health and medical services.
Herpes sores blister, then burst, scab and heal.
Herpes spreads by oral, vaginal and anal sex.
STIs are the most common cause of genital sores.