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I was also surprised to hear that you only live about an hour away...Do they overtly or covertly make you feel like you are not wanted there? That they don't want your support, and that you don't have a right to visit your dad whenever you want (if you want, that is)? I would think, as others have suggested, that your stepmom would welcome any help she could ally, a break, someone to help him see reality, etc. But it doesn't really sound like it. Nevertheless, you (and your brother) also have the right to visit your father, see how he's doing, etc. though it sounds as though 'dropping in' is not cool. Calling first is important.

Just responding to this to no one inparticular. :)

My dad lives 1200 miles away (by car) and is remarried. He's been married for 14 years ago, so it's not like it's a new thing. And I even lived near him for a year and a half, so it's not like I don't know his wife.

My dad had a stroke in Oct 2004. He drove up from AR to PA to go to my sister's wedding. Got to PA on Monday, had a stroke after lunch that day, and had SEVERE aphasia. (Physically he was fine within 24 hours... Well, his grips were equal, he could walk on his own although he wasn't allowed to without a nurse by his side, etc.) He was allowed out for a few hours that Sat to attend the wedding and then back in the hospital for several days.

His wife stayed in AR. She came about a week after he was released to drive him home. I spoke to her for the first time since that ordeal about a month ago. I called and he wasn't home (oops) and we chatted for about an hour. I talk to my dad weekly or every other, but it was nice to get HER opinion of how he is doing since I'm not there.

It's a slippery slope with 'stepmoms' sometimes, I guess. It's not that we don't get along. We have had our ups and downs, I guess... but mostly there isn't much of a reason for us to talk and so we don't. I wouldn't classify our relationship as bad... more non-existent. The miles probably make this worse than the OPs situation, but things would be SOOOOOOOOOOOOO different if my dad was married to my mom, even if they lived far away. I don't have to be polite to my mom, for example.

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