Every year, my stepkids make me rethink gifts. Since my husband's money is cut significantly by child support payments, I feel like in order to make Christmas sort of normal, I need to pitch in. I do every year, anyways. He can only get so much, and I want them to have clothes, jackets, etc. I see things all the time and go "she would like that..." Etc.
And every damn year... the kids are almost, total, or sort of snots. And I rethink everything. Like why do I think about them so much, but they can't even treat me like they've lived with me for years? Why can't they respond to my text messages? Why do they act like I'm a stranger when their mom is around?
Last night, I dug out one kid's gifts and put them in a pile. This pile, in my head, is to return.
I probably won't. But I am so tempted. Why the hell does she need anything at our house if she doesn't want to live there, can't respect us, can't even communicate with us?
Funny thing is, if I told anyone else in our world about wanting to return their gifts, I would be told that they're just kids, but it's Christmas, and as my husband said, they act this way because of their mom- not because of them(selves).
Which after so many years, that excuse is becoming more and more bogus to me. They know better. That's what I think. I know they are manipulated, scared of displeasing their mom, and totally messed up thanks to her, her husband, and court- Yet I don't really care. They should show affection to their dad no matter what, because he's their dad and they clearly love him (when it's just us). They are fine with me and know me, yet they like to pretend like they don't know me and even hate seeing me when out in public around their mom, mom's family, people who know their mom. I'm so sick of it.
So every year, I wonder about those gifts. Then I get caught in the circle: if we don't give them crap they want, then they think we don't give them what they want. If we don't provide for them as much as the other house does, then they can't say that they have what they want and need at our house as well. Then our attempts to get them to live with us more become null, as we wouldn't have made the houses equal despite the current custody arrangement.
This all blows. Merry Christmas.