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Stepfather Cutting Ties

Community Member

I guess I'll start with the basics. So my stepdad moved in with us when I was only 1 year old - he lived with us before I'd even had my first birthday. Things were pretty good, but his marriage with my mother started dissolving before I was even 10. What happened then was a 7 year break up. To be quite frank, it was a relief when they finally split a few days after i had graduated high school. But I kept in contact, of course. This was the man that raised me.

 Apparently he doesn't feel the same. I'm now 22, and he has just informed me that he wants to cut all ties. So now I'm left wondering why the guy who's my dad in all but blood has just decided to waltz off into the sunset without us. It's not like we had a bad relationship. I've been financially independent since moving out at 17, send birthday/Christmas/Father's Day cards, phone every other week just to chat, and meet up whenever I'm on break from uni. I guess I'm just looking for someone who's been through something like this. 

How do you get over this sort of thing? I don't even know why he's doing this - and my sister says that he has said the same things to her, two weeks after agreeing to walk her down the aisle. Just.... I'm not sure how to feel. Would really appreciate advice from somebody who may have dealt with something similar

2 Replies 2

white knight
Community Champion
Community Champion

Hi T&T, welcome to Beyond Blue forums

Re: "How do you get over this sort of thing?"   Not unlike losing your loving in-laws or step children when your relationship dissolves. Of grieving for a lost one. Time and talking about it helps...as time goes by the hurt becomes less or hidden as daily life takes over.

Re: " I don't even know why he's doing this" Thats the hard part. Pity people sometimes dont tell us their reasons. My guess is (based on my experience) that he has many reasons that multiply and it leaves him little option. Think of these possibilities- he thinks you and your sister will be influenced by your mother, he thinks your contact with him will include you mentioning your mum, the hurt of his separation with your mum is such he cannot handle it, He feel his whole world is lost, he is troubled....and so on.

So what to do? I would continue to send communication, short letters, birthday cards etc. Reassuring him of your commitment REGARDLESS of your relationship with your mum. Telling him always that he raised you and you love him as a dad.

If he is on Facebook try to be a friend. Post a picture of you and him when you were a baby. with a short few words "this is my dad when I was 2" etc. There is a chance he needs time so be delicate. Everyone is different and he might be the type that needs that time alone. He will tell you time after time if this is the case. If that happens then let him go and try again in a tear or two.

In your situation I would rock up on fathers day with a card and a photo of myself and my sister. I wouldnt give up but I'd be respectful of his feelings. Who knows what's going on in his mind.

Good luck. Life can be tough.

Tony WK

Champion Alumni
Champion Alumni

dear T&T, this must have been a difficult comment to post, and really it is a sad situation.

The question is why would a step father want to have no more contact with the children that he raised with your blood mother, and yes that's what you are asking, however there are two sides to this.

The first is to do what is happening now, that he makes no more contact, and the second is that you try and keep in contact with him, however this may fall with nothing happening.

He may feel as though all the kids aren't his blood children, and that this was a chapter in his life that has now passed, and as he doesn't want to contact your mum, it naturally follows through that he doesn't want contact with her kids, because this is another chapter that has finished, so seeing any of them has now passed.

I'm not helping you much here, but he might be in another relationship, where again kids are involved, and he may have a string of kids from previous relationships, and now it would become too messy, so he wants to forget all contact with them, or perhaps his present lady friend has now told him not to see any of you any more. Geoff.