Taking a step back from Step-Parenting?

I’ve been a step-mom (not married, and choose not to be) for over five years, in virtually every aspect. I help read them and take part in the financial responsibilities.

Their mother, however, does not work and relies exclusively on subsidies to care for her kiddos, along with over 800 in CS. Hubby and I take them half the time and additionally, cover all major expenses.

Hubby and I have a little one and between her, hubby, school and a full time job, I no longer feel it is necessary to cover the remaining expenses for my step children, as their mother and father should be taking care of that.

Hubby disagrees and is happy to continue to pay for everything, even if it means I foot the bill. He and I are both aware that CS is not being used appropriately, as the kids never seem to have so much as a pair of new shoes on their feet unless we buy them.

What should I do?

9 Answers

  • 1 year ago

    Stop helping with your money split the bills with him child support is his obligation

  • Foofa
    Lv 7
    1 year ago

    This is confusing because you claim to not be married (meaning joint assets shouldn't be paying for your boyfriend's child support) but then call this guy "hubby" indicating that you are a legal entity together. If it's the former and your bf can't pay his support he needs to go back to court to have the order reduced. No judge wants to make a non-custodial parent homeless so they'll make arrangements for a chance in income circumstances. He's also within his rights to ask for an accounting of where all the money goes (and perhaps to demand sole custody if his ex isn't taking proper care of the kids). You really chose to get into a bad situation when you picked this guy.

  • 1 year ago

    I guess your choice is between making her responsible (unlikely) or making sure those kids have what they need, regardless. It might be unfair, but what is more unfair is those kids doing with out through no fault of their own. Your choice of course.

  • 1 year ago

    Your money and your husband's money is THE SAME MONEY. I'm not sure how you think you can stop covering their expenses. Sure, YOU personally don't have to spend a dime on them, but your husband can, and is going to.

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  • Anonymous
    1 year ago

    Does your "husband" make minimum wage? $800 a month is NOTHING for more than one child.

    I would be very careful that the mother doesn't take your "husband" back to Court and ask for an increase as the children get older.

    You probably already know that the Courts are not understanding when a man complains about the cost of his first family when he has gone on to establish a second family.

  • 1 year ago

    Talk to their father and tell him that he may need to go to court to get better care for the children. How do you foot the bill? Doesn't their father work and pay the child support? You do need to see that the mother uses the money for them, but please don't take it out on the children. They are helpless and have been through a lot already, plus who knows what their home is like? I would try to sit down and talk to the kids and find out what's going on, but in a relaxed way so you're not putting them on the spot. Try to see the good in "hubby" (not married?) and the fact that he wants to care for his children...Tell him how much you admire that but that you really need to do something more about the situation. Maybe child welfare needs to step in with the mother?

  • 1 year ago

    You can close your wallet if you wish but your husband is obligated to give the monthly CS payments that the courts ordered. My son pays $3,500 a month for his two kids. $800 is a pittance. As time goes by, you trying spending no more than $400 a month on all expenses for your child... including roof, utilities, food, clothing, transportation, medical care..... that's dire poverty. Hardly excessive!

  • Anonymous
    1 year ago

    Choice or not, Taylor, here’s the biggest issue. You aren’t a stepmother if you aren’t married to the father of the children. That’s not my opinion. That’s the law. If you read to them and take part in the financial responsibilities, that is very kind to you and, I’m sure, very helpful for the children in more ways than one.

    The dollar amount of child support which the non-custodial parent pays (and it would appear your bf is the non-custodial parent) is determined by different methods in different States. Sometimes household income is a consideration; in other States only the non-custodial parent’s income is counted; in NY it’s a fixed percentage of the non-custodial parent’s gross income. I happen to agree that the mother and father should pay the children’s expenses, and that the father’s gf should not be expected to pay.

    IF you are in a State that considers household income, you are already paying to a certain extent based on your income.

    People are in Court on a regular basis over “appropriate use of child support.” There ARE no guidelines unless the custodial parent is using the drugs on alcohol or drugs. ALL expenses of maintaining a permanent residence, ALL of the child’s expenses are USUALLY deemed to be legitimate. Where is the “shoes money” going?

    Again, the father is not your husband, and it matters to the Courts. In every State I know he has no obligation to support you. He DOES have an obligation to support ALL of his children, including his child with you. That means that if joint household income is a consideration, your income is included but, for example, your auto is not. You make $1,000 a month together (for the sake of an example), and your car payment is $500 and it’s in your name? Your income is considered, but that expense is NOT a deduction.

    What can you do? Probably nothing. You can probably talk until you turn blue, but I don’t know if that will change your bf’s mind. If child support is a burden, you can ALWAYS go back to Court and request an adjustment based on changed circumstances. In MY State your child and his/her expenses would NOT be a changed circumstance, because you are not married. To take things to an extreme, could you file for child support for your child? Yes. Would that change “joint income?” Depends on where you are.

    I have four stepchildren. My husband’s divorce requires that he pay support until each child graduates from college. I am not unsympathetic. We’ve paid in addition to child support for ballet lessons in advance (she hated ballet; good-bye money!); drum lessons (he hated playing drums; good-bye money!) and we FINALLY went back to Court with a skilled attorney and asked why we (and we are married) were paying for 6 pairs of sneakers a year and never saw any of the children in new sneakers. All of us got a lecture about what is “in the best interest of the children.” “Us” includes me.

    I think you need to work out how you feel about the “ex” before you overreact and it hurts either the children or your bf. You criticize the ex-wife for being a “single woman” going out to dinner with your “husband.” He’s not your husband, and he’s also single.

    “Do I need to be friends with the mother of my husband’s friends? She has a bad habit of turning invites down and calling my husband just to complain about me, as opposed to just talking to me personally. I shut it down and told her that I won’t engage that behavior and will always treat her with the respect and dignity she deserves. I have no desire to be friends with her, because I ultimately don’t feel the need to. Am I wrong?”

    “Dinner with the ex? My husband wants to go to a movie and dinner alone with the mother of his boys and his boys for their birthday. He didn’t invite me, his wife and also, the mother of his 6 month old baby. She’s newly single and has a bad reputation of acting inappropriately. He has a bad habit of blowing things off. Am I wrong for felling upset about this? How would you feel about this?”

    Source(s): A whole bunch of money in tuition and experience
  • Anonymous
    1 year ago

    Stop CS and use the money to pay or the kids or give the money for CS as supplies for the kids to her. I won't give my ex money. I buy stuff for the children because I know the money will get spent on himself or his other children

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