Angry About Everything

by Marie
(Texas)

I am a 31 year old mom of three. Six years ago my children were taken away due to my drug addiction. I have now been clean for almost three years. For the last 5 1/2 years I have been dating and living with an older man who has three of his own kids and two grandsons.

In August of last year my father (who has had my kids this whole time) called and said he was bringing them home. Only two came home--the youngest wanted to stay there. Since my older two came home it has gotten worse.



I am a full time college student, watch the youngest grandson during the day so my boyfriend's oldest daughter (and supposedly my best friend), goes to college and works. So I have her son from 9 in the morning until after 9 at night most days. The adjustment issues are with my kids. My boyfriend works more than I do, and is home less, plus everything gets put on me.

His older two kids are always asking me to do things for them, and when I say no they throw a fit. The older two are in their eary 20's. His kids have fought with me since day one and it just seems to be getting worse since my kids have been here. My oldest just turned 13 this past Saturday, and for the last 2 1/2 months she has been pulling her own hair out, literally. So not only is she new to a small town school she is being picked on about her hair. My response is telling her "If you don't want to be made fun of, then quite pulling your hair out."

I know this is not the right way to handle the situation, so this morning I made her an appointment with the doctor to try and figure why she is doing this. My son is 11 and he is very mad and scared. He's a sweet young man, but he has bad days like everyone else, and those days are really bad. He yells, hits things, slams doors and say's really hurtful things to his sister and my boyfriend--but really ugly things to me.

My reaction is to yell and hurt his feelings like he has hurt mine. I know it is not right to yell at him like that, but I don't think I just react. I do not hit my children at all, but there are times when I am so mad I hit the wall. It scares him and his sister very bad. I don't want my kids to grow up fearing me. I love my kids more than anything, and I am scared for them all the time.

I know I need help, but I don't know where to start. My boyfriend is getting real tired of the yelling and me always being mad about something. He has not said it, but I feel like he is one step away from leaving me. I want to change and I want to be a good mom and a good spouse but I don't know how. I am desperate to fix my anger problem, before it is too late.

Response from Dr. DeFoore

Hello Marie, and thanks for telling your story here. Congratulations on your 3 years of being clean from drugs. As you know, that is the top priority...if you don't have your sobriety, you don't have anything.

You really have your hands full with your blended family. It has been found consistently that biological parents should do the primary parenting of their children in blended families. It sounds like you've "stepped in" for your boyfriend with his children and grandchildren. Your boyfriend needs to be the primary parent to his children--speaking of which, if as you say that two of them are in their 20's, they need to be on their own anyway.

Apart from staying clean, your primary responsibility is to be as healthy and happy as a person as you possibly can. With that in mind, here are some ways for you to better manage your anger, on this page.

It sounds like you have been overburdened with responsibilities that are not rightfully yours. Talk to your boyfriend, and tell him what you think you can and cannot do, and ask for his support.

You can see that taking care of yourself, making yourself happy, and loving yourself is top priority if you intend to take care of anyone else. Otherwise, you're tired irritable and not at your best when trying to care for others, and neither you nor they will be pleased with the outcomes.

This page on self love will definitely help you.

Believe in yourself, Marie. You can do this.

My very best to you,

Dr. DeFoore

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