My Step Daughter’s Mom Refuses to Co-Parent, and It Really Hurts Her: Any Advice?

A mom writes in asking for advice. Her step daughter’s mom refuses to co-parent and it is really hurting her daughter. It has been five years, so their mom has moved on, and has stopped caring for her daughter. However, her daughter always says that she wants all of her parents at her birthday party. But, her mom still refuses. Any advice for this mom?

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A member of the community asks:

“My stepdaughter’s birthday is this weekend, and we’ll be doing a birthday celebration. I have 2 stepdaughters, of which they tell us every year how they wish both of their parents can be included in their birthday celebrations rather than having two celebrations. It’s been five years since I’ve been with my fiancé. We have a blended family, two kids are his, two kids are mine, and together we have one child.

My stepdaughter’s mother has been in a relationship also for five years and is now pregnant. So she’s obviously moved on and redid her life as we have as well. I sent her an invitation earlier today about coming to her daughter’s birthday this weekend, and she just doesn’t want to be involved. She refuses to have a good co-parenting relationship with us. My stepdaughters are growing up with the image that their mother hates their father because they’ve even said comments to us as if it’s a joke.

My fiancé just brushes it off and only thinks of his girls, which is how it should be. I am completely about leaving egos and differences aside and putting what our children want/need first. I sent her a message this morning, hoping that she would have a change of heart, but it didn’t work. I just feel so bummed because how can a mother be so hostile when it involves the happiness of their children?

Here is the message I sent her: ‘Hi A*** hope you’re doing well. This weekend we’ll be celebrating S*** birthday – she wants to do a Spa Birthday party so I’ll be coordinating everything this week so she can have a nice celebration with a few friends. I want to invite you and J**** to come to her birthday party. I know V**** mentioned before, and you’ve said no, but I’d still like to pass on an invitation to you since you are her mother. I know every year the girls always make a comment on how they wish they can have both of their parents at their celebration. If you can honestly find it in your heart and give her a surprise by coming, I am sure that is something she will remember forever.’

This is what she wrote back: ‘Appreciate it, but I am not sure in what way I need to explain that it will remain as it is and has been. I also don’t need to find anything in my heart about this. Thanks.’ I didn’t even bother writing back because it won’t end well, and I prefer to keep a little peace than having drama. Any advice is greatly appreciated.”

– Mamas Uncut Community Member

Community Advice for This Mom Frustrated with Co-Parenting

To see what advice the Mamas Uncut Facebook community has for this mom in need, read the comments of the post embedded below.

Advice Summary


The advice for this mom was very split. Some felt that her step daughter’s mom should not refuse to co-parent. One said, “Her loss. Keep the letter. Show her daughter later on in years. You attempted to do a nice thing but Mom wasn’t having it. Even for the happiness of her daughter. It’s sad.” Another agreed, “If the biological mom wants to be that way then there’s not much you can do about it other than make sure the girls have a good time on their birthdays, with or without her.”

Some commenters cautioned her on what she did. One commented, “First, you’ve got to remember that our job as stepparents is to support the biological parent in parenting their child. Run this stuff by their dad and see if he’s interested in sending her a message. If he is, great. If not, it is not your place to try to fix it.” Another commenter agreed, “You can’t force anything, so just stop. Be happy and enjoy your family. You are making stress for yourself and making problems that don’t exist. She is entitled to decline and it doesn’t make her a bad mom.”

One mom shared very helpful advice along with her personal experience. She shared, “I think what you are trying to do is great. My ex and I used to do combined parties when our kids were little mostly because we had a lot of mutual friends. I would be seriously pissed off if the current stepmother sent me a message telling me to ‘find it in my heart’ about anything in regard to my own daughter.” She continues, “She was asked she said no let her be the one to explain to the kids why she doesn’t want to be involved. You can’t control what she does, so go have an awesome time with your stepdaughter and her friends!”

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