DEAR ABBY: I was raised by a horrible stepmom who made it her purpose in life to make my brother and me miserable. When I became a stepmom, I made it my goal to be the best one I could be, and for the next 15 years was a giving, loving stepmother to both my husband's children.
The problem? They take me for granted! They are not only disrespectful to me, but also to their father, who is a cancer survivor. During the last two years of treatments, I haven't been able to depend on them for anything. At this point I'm so disgusted I couldn't care less if I ever see either of them again.
My husband is torn. He gets upset when I talk about them or mention how they treat us. I'm at my wits' end, and I'm ready to leave. I have stood by him through sickness and hard times. Every time I see a light at the end of the tunnel, his adult kids show up. What should I do? -- READY TO GIVE UP IN FLORIDA
DEAR READY TO GIVE UP: Your husband is so emotionally invested in his children that he cannot recognize their shortcomings. Many parents have a similar blind spot, so try not to be too hard on him.
If you love your husband, and his "kids" are so busy they're not around a lot, why sacrifice your marriage? Stop "dissing" his kids, and when they come around stop making yourself so available. Get out of there. Find other things to do. Let your husband have the "pleasure" of entertaining them, and you'll be far less frustrated.