Yeah, specifics tend to help get a more accurate response. :) If I'm reading this right, Marshall and Jacob are not biological siblings? In the small picture, I don't think that matters, since they've been living as siblings. They see themselves as brothers, no matter what the bloodlines say. As long as they call themselves brothers, and you call them brothers, they're brothers. For the big picture, yes, it matters, and if you do know who Jacob's biological father is (and please, refer to that person as his biological dad, and not his "real" dad; his "real" dad is the one who raised him, and anyone who lives in mixed families is going to take serious umbridge at that term anyway), I think it would be good to foster some kind of relationship with that person, if they're willing. If nothing else, Jacob may need some assurance from your husband that he's seen as his son, and not some interloper. And again, perhaps talking to a third party (i.e., therapist or trusted teacher) would help. Talk to your husband about Jacob. It's easy for him to stick his head in the sand and pretend nothing's wrong. It's possible that he sees the problems, but doesn't want to acknowledge them because he may feel guilty for his role in them (however small or inconsequential, particularly if he did nothing to stop the bio mom's treatment of the boys). If he knows that you just want to help the boys, that you're not being judgemental of anything that happened previously, he may be more willing to find a solution with you. The fact that you DO notice something amiss and want to do something about it is commendable. The problem is what you can do about it. For the bed-wetting - does Jacob admit to the wetting? Don't judge or berate him for it (it's not like he's doing it on purpose). Get him to help strip the sheets and wash them. Not as punishment, but because he's ten and it's a very easy thing to do, and he'll feel good about helping out. Talk to his pediatrician to see if there's a medical issue afoot and clear that up. The ped might have some suggestions for how to solve the problem as well, and that will go a long way towards boosting Jacob's self-esteem. You're right that spending time alone with Jacob will help. Think small picture as well as large - even as much as getting Jacob to help you with the chores around the house, five or ten minutes at a time throughout the day. Hey, if you trust HIM to wash the dishes, but not Marshall who is six and might drop and break them, that goes a long way. Every little helps. Good luck!