She and her husband were in their late 30s when she finally asked for a divorce. She didn't want to and did everything she could to try and keep her family together. But ultimately, he didn't want to work on their relationship. To add salt to the wound, he started dating a 26-year-old right after the divorce.
Her husband isn't all OP lost, either. After the divorce, she was no longer able to afford medications now that she was no longer on her ex's health insurance.
But she wasn't expecting to give up so much time with her sons. Since her ex's new girlfriend is so much younger, she's able to keep up with the boys better. She understands their desire to extend their stay there because these were things she couldn't do. She did her best to help them enjoy themselves in her home, but it was no match for the fun they were having there.
Now, the boys live primarily with their dad and his new girlfriend. It was tough to accept that reality, but she respects and understands their decision.
The Real Problem
Now, her ex and his new girlfriend are married. As a stepmother, the ex's new wife has been a great co-parent.
She always respects OP as a primary parent and lets OP know if they're taking the boys somewhere far away. She sends her pictures and updates her every day. She's even taken OP to doctor's appointments.
As much as she can understand the appeal of her ex's new wife, OP wasn't expecting her own family to like his new partner better too.
The Hangout Without Her
Over the holidays, OP’s aunt had a holiday party that her ex and his new wife were invited to, but she wasn't.
OP had no idea it was happening until she opened up social media and saw photos of all of them, her sons, ex-husband, and his new partner, all dressed up and celebrating Christmas with her family.
There's this one picture of her kids, her ex-husband's new wife, and her mother all posing around the Christmas tree. You'd never be able to tell she wasn't actually her mother's daughter just from looking at that picture.
When she asked her family about the party, they said they knew she worked Saturdays and knew she wouldn't be able to get off, so what was the point of inviting her? They thought it would just make her upset.
But they did want to celebrate with the kids, so they invited them and her ex-husband.
Even a Birthday Plan for The New Wife?
Recently, her mother was talking about family birthdays and planning out for February.
When they have a month with multiple birthdays, they do one big family party. This year, OP's mother wants to include her ex's new wife in the February celebration.
OP was a little taken aback by it. Her mother got kind of annoyed and told her that her ex's new wife was “part of the family now.”
It's why OP just gets the feeling that they like her more than her. And she gets it: She's young, pretty, very friendly, fit, and personable, and she's not.
She just doesn't know how to deal with feeling like she's being replaced and shoved to the side. She feels she’s probably being way too dramatic about this or just feeling bad for herself.
From Self-pity to Self-focus
A Redditor thinks that maybe there are a couple of things here OP isn't admitting to herself. She advises OP to move from self-pity to self-focus.
They wrote OP should, “Stop and look at yourself and the good things about you. No one is you and no one will ever be you. You are unique and special to your family and even if you currently can’t see it, that doesn’t mean they don’t show it.”
“Your children love you. Your family loves you. Heck, your ex must do too,” they added. “You birthed his children. The only person who doesn’t seem to love you is you. So it’s ok to take a break and fully focus on yourself. These are just your small dark days. You are allowed to feel shitty. You’ll be just fine.”
Another commented that a talk about healthy boundaries is long past due.
What do you think of her mother? Will a conversation with her mother help matters?
Read the full story here.
This article is produced and syndicated by Wealth of Geeks.
Amaka Chukwuma is a freelance content writer with a BA in linguistics. As a result of her insatiable curiosity, she writes in various B2C and B2B niches. Her favorite subject matter, however, is in the financial, health, and technological niches. She has contributed to publications like Buttonwood Tree and FinanceBuzz in the past and currently writes for Wealth of Geeks.