A woman turned to Reddit to ask if they were in the wrong for telling their sister-in-law that she shouldn’t push to adopt sons from her husband’s previous marriage.
A Loss in the Family
The Original Poster (OP) has two nephews who are currently 20 and 19 years old.
They lost their mother when they were only 5 and 6 years old.
Remarried to Her Brother
OP’s sister-in-law married her brother when the boys were 7 and 8 years old.
Prior to their marriage, her sister-in-law had been dating for only a short time, and she was the third person that OP’s brother had dated since his wife’s passing.
Wants to Be “Mom”
Her sister-in-law had hoped to be close to the boys’ maternal family and even expressed to OP that she wished the boys would sometimes refer to her as “mom.”
Love and Devotion
As for extended family, OP’s brother only had OP and their other sister, who lives overseas, and the maternal family was the only real extended family the boys had.
Nonetheless, her sister-in-law has always loved the boys and has been a devoted stepmother to them.
It Didn’t Go According to Plan
OP has noticed that despite her sister-in-law’s hopes, the boys have never referred to her as “mom.”
Additionally, the maternal family has not been particularly close to her sister-in-law or OP’s brother.
Not Able to Conceive
After attempting to conceive for many years, her sister-in-law came to terms with the fact that she would not have a biological child.
During this time, she did not distance herself from the boys but did express to OP that she was considering bringing up the idea of them calling her “mom.”
OP advised her to let the boys decide on their own and to focus on cultivating a positive relationship with them.
The Idea of Adoption
A few years ago, her sister-in-law went through early menopause, which meant that any hope she had of getting pregnant naturally was permanently ended.
Last year, she and OP’s brother decided to have a conversation with the boys about the possibility of adoption.
Adopting the Boys
Her sister-in-law expressed her love for the boys and how much she would like to adopt them if they were willing.
However, the boys were not interested in being adopted.
OP learned about this conversation from the boys themselves, who were unhappy with how it was brought up.
They felt blindsided by the sudden discussion and had never given any indication that they were open to the idea of adoption.
Recently, the topic of adoption was brought up again, and her sister-in-law asked the boys if they loved her in a meaningful way and whether there could be a compromise where she could be acknowledged as their mother.
However, the boys were still firm in their decision and declined the offer of adoption and refused to call her “mom.”
Promises Fall Flat
They did not answer when asked if they loved her.
She pleaded with them, emphasizing that she would be an exceptional second mom, just as she always had been.
She promised to continue pouring love into their lives and being there for them.
However, the conversation eventually turned into an argument, and the boys left without reaching any kind of agreement with her.
After the recent conversation about adoption, her sister-in-law was heartbroken and sobbed her heart out.
OP saw her and her brother for the first time since the discussion, and she expressed how much the rejection had hurt her.
Confused and Rejected
She mentioned the maternal family once again and expressed her confusion about why they couldn’t accept her into their family and hearts.
She also revealed that she had believed the boys would feel like she had earned the right to adopt them.
Too Young to Know Better
However, OP’s brother referred to the boys as “children” and suggested that they could revisit the topic in a few years when they had grown up.
Accepting the Truth
OP advised that the boys were not obligated to agree to the adoption and suggested that her sister-in-law and her brother should work towards accepting that the adoption was not going to happen.
Hurt and Angry
However, OP’s brother became angry, and her sister-in-law appeared hurt and betrayed by OP’s suggestion.
Damaging the Relationship
Some Reddit users think her sister-in-law is being entitled and damaging her relationship with the boys by pushing the issue, while others feel sorry for her and think she needs therapy to deal with her infertility issues.
Who’s At Fault?
The boys are legally recognized as adults, and the maternal family is not obligated to welcome her as their daughter’s replacement.
The OP told her sister-in-law that the boys don’t owe her an adoption, and some users believe that the brother may also be at fault for allowing her to assume a maternal role in the family.
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The post Pushy Stepmom Wants to Adopt the Kids and Be ‘Mom’ – But They are Dead Against It! first appeared on Wealthy Living.
Featured Image Credit: Shutterstock / New Africa. The people shown in the images are for illustrative purposes only, not the actual people featured in the story.
This post is based on Reddit but the names have been changed.