Dear Ex- Wife

Please recall that you left my husband after having a long, drawn out humiliatingly pubic affair with a coworker.  He (now your ex, my husband) remarried, and you remarried soon after.  We are all adults.  Everyone has moved on.  Your hostility towards me and possessiveness towards my husband defies explanation.  After six years of keeping my chin up and trying to be “adult” and “supportive” and “not step on toes”, I am fed up.  I would be happy if we could just attain ‘cordial’ and call it a day.  However, even ‘cordial’ is not going to be possible without some mutual effort.  As such, Ex-wife, please be mindful of the following:  

  • Do not call my husband at 11 p.m. on Saturday night to ask if he will clean out your overflowing gutters during a pouring rainstorm.  You have remarried.  If you need help, ask your husband or call a handyman.  
  • Do not ask my husband for advice on make, model and financing of your new car.  You have remarried.  If you need help, ask your husband. 
  • Do not request that my husband find a new tax preparer for you, make the appointment and attend the appointment with you.  You have remarried.  You do not file a joint return with my husband, you file a joint return with YOUR husband.  There are no issues with SC’s tax return.  If you need help with your taxes, ask your husband.  Ditto for retirement planning.
  • Do not get flustered when I sit next to my husband at SC’s school functions.  Seriously, it’s okay – we are married.  The other parents know that SC’s parents are divorced.  Many of them have blended families as well, and none appear to stress about seating arrangements.  You could pay some attention to your husband, instead of worrying where I sit.  Your husband sometimes looks uncomfortable at these events, especially when he has to sit a row behind because you feel compelled to sit next to your ex at any cost. 
  •  Do not gossip about me in front of your son/my SC.  He does not really care what you think of my hair, my new handbag or how much my shoes cost, and frankly, already feels guilty (and disloyal to you) about not hating me.  PS – news flash, SC struggles with keeping secrets – he repeats what you say about me.  PPS – I don’t want to further compromise SC, so I don’t react to your comments and I have not mentioned your them to my husband. 
  • Do not call my husband to complain about the difficulties you are having with, what’s the term –  your new lover/affair person/cheat-ee.  He does not want to hear about it.  Also, it’s a little weird to introduce your lover/affair person/cheat-ee to and encourage his interaction with your son. 
  • I understand that you are not always happy to see me, and feel the same way about you.  Regardless, please endeavor to just smile, wave, say hi, or engage in some form of non-hostile greeting when circumstances dictate we must be in the same room.  Please, just be fake if it’s the only way you can manage civility.  Grunting and scowling makes others in our presence uncomfortable, plus, it’s just plain rude. 

Thanks for even considering the possibility of stepping out of the spotlight for a moment in order for the focus to be on SC, where it should be. 
Cordially yours,
New Wife / StepMom

~ by Stepfamily Letter Project on May 22, 2009.

4 Responses to “Dear Ex- Wife”

  1. Yes, Why can’t they just fake it!?! I don’t mind fake nice. It’s better than bitter nastiness… and would make them look better in the end!!

  2. I could of wrote this!! We go through the same things. Just ignore her and have your husband ignore her phone calls unless she leaves a message about the kids. My husband says, “ok, that is it about the kids?..bye” LOL

  3. Mine used to do that too. She’d start in on him and he’d say “Is that all you phoned for? Bye.” click. End of statement.

    She learned. Ten years later, she doesn’t do that anymore. It took a while, but she did learn. Yay her. lol

  4. omg – sounds like you’ve got yourself a real peach 😦 I’m glad your sc feels he can talk with you, mine do as well — it’s heartbreaking that a mother can mess with her kids so much that they need to pour out their hearts to a step-parent… isn’t it supposed to be the other way around?

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