Holidays Step Child only Comes to see us when we do something special

stephk1981

Mouseketeer
Joined
Oct 11, 2013
Telling someone to do something with grace is assuming that they may be without.. ive been there too as have many others.
Ciao
I never assume.... that's why I read your whole post before I commented.....I wanted to give you a in well wishes comment trying to help. If you didn't take it in that way, I am sorry. Either way, I hope your family finds peace
 

KenHutch

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jul 7, 2005
I remember this well. At 11 Gwendolyn said Good Night Daddy everynight but from 12 to almost 18 there was this creature who grunted at anything I said or used Its Fine when asked anything. Then on our last vacation (a month short of 18) she walked past me in the room and said goodnight daddy. She lives with me so I saw her daily but ouch those hormones. It usually gets better is all I can say.
 

brockash

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jul 16, 2008
She is a teenager and whether she is your daughter or step daughter, there are going to be times when she displays the very worst of teenage traits (as well as the good ones). Let her be self obsessed and selfish sometimes, if it isn’t causing anyone harm. These years don’t last long and it is so very important that her Father doesn’t do anything to damage a fragile (post divorce/death/new partner) relationship. Be kind and generous and hope that in adulthood she will follow your example.
Could not agree more... especially with the fact that there's the divorce/different families dynamic. - I came from that and had basically the best parents/step parents that you could ask for, but it still got tricky/uncomfortable/different feelings etc.

I also have a teen and the ungratefulness drives me up a wall, but I just hope that he eventually grows up and that it'll pass - doesn't mean we don't have some serious talks about it, but I do remember when I was young and you are pretty self-absorbed lol. I'd just let it go for now and see what happens as she matures etc.
 
  • paisleys

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Oct 25, 2013
    It is an opinion, if it's not one you like, that's fine. I have been in the exact situation as your step daughter, take it or leave it. I never said you lack Grace.... those are your words. I said, do it with Grace and you all may end up as the best of friends. Perhaps you should read my reply before commenting;)

    I also didn't say you weren't involved....you aren't her parent though. These are decisions your husband needs to make. Bottom line she is a teenager acting like a teenager. She's not being disrespectful, at least not as you have mentioned.
    I loved your advice, it was positive and constructive :confused3
     

    stephk1981

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Oct 11, 2013
    I loved your advice, it was positive and constructive :confused3
    Thanks Paisley's, I didn't really understand what I said wrong either...but sometimes maybe it's hard to interpret someone's meaning via messages....who knows. My intent was to offer her positive advice, in hopes poster would end up in a good place with stepdaughter and whole family.... hopefully that will happen! Thanks for the positive encouragement :)
     

    kiramay

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jan 18, 2012
    First, teenagers suck. I have two of them. They’re mine, but they still suck. The attitudes. Omg.
    Second, (and I didn’t read the thread and I’m not in your shoes), stop sending links, etc. to her to decide. It’s your money and her time. You both get to decide how to spend those, but it shouldn’t be linked. Imho.
     

    luvmy2babies

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Apr 23, 2010
    Thanks Paisley's, I didn't really understand what I said wrong either...but sometimes maybe it's hard to interpret someone's meaning via messages....who knows. My intent was to offer her positive advice, in hopes poster would end up in a good place with stepdaughter and whole family.... hopefully that will happen! Thanks for the positive encouragement :)
    I think I may have some idea. Although I could see your intent, the first post (at least to me) also had that "You're not her parent, stay out of it, the child probably doesn't like you anyway" tone. As a stepmom I have read it many times said in different ways including the whole "the kids were there first" line. Gives off the impression that you're an unwanted accessory...on the shelf or in the closet when it comes to the child(ren) with no input. The thing is your spouse/parent (at least mine was) thinking the exact opposite. I tried the "you're not the parent stay out of it" method and my husband complained I wasn't involved enough.

    As a stepparent it was this delicate balancing act trying to please everyone. Be sensitive to the children they didn't ask for the divorce. Be sensitive to your husband/wife they have to put their child(ren) first. And you're just there putting up with everybody. It's a life of sacrifice which is fine; but given that, the "stay out of it you're not the parent" line of thinking can really get old.

    Finally, there's really no evidence in the original post that their relationship or lack of one has anything to do with the child's behavior and as plenty of folks have stated, they have experienced similar with the teens they created. I have as well. I could write something similar at times or the OP's husband could have posted instead. As I said, I understood your intent. Just trying to provide some possible insight to the other point of view.
     
  • stephk1981

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Oct 11, 2013
    I think I may have some idea. Although I could see your intent, the first post (at least to me) also had that "You're not her parent, stay out of it, the child probably doesn't like you anyway" tone. As a stepmom I have read it many times said in different ways including the whole "the kids were there first" line. Gives off the impression that you're an unwanted accessory...on the shelf or in the closet when it comes to the child(ren) with no input. The thing is your spouse/parent (at least mine was) thinking the exact opposite. I tried the "you're not the parent stay out of it" method and my husband complained I wasn't involved enough.

    As a stepparent it was this delicate balancing act trying to please everyone. Be sensitive to the children they didn't ask for the divorce. Be sensitive to your husband/wife they have to put their child(ren) first. And you're just there putting up with everybody. It's a life of sacrifice which is fine; but given that, the "stay out of it you're not the parent" line of thinking can really get old.

    Finally, there's really no evidence in the original post that their relationship or lack of one has anything to do with the child's behavior and as plenty of folks have stated, they have experienced similar with the teens they created. I have as well. I could write something similar at times or the OP's husband could have posted instead. As I said, I understood your intent. Just trying to provide some possible insight to the other point of view.
    Thanks for trying to give insight! And in my o.p. I meant stepdaughters ' behavior' referring to her coming only to fun events or events she receives money at. I wasn't actually meaning ' behavior problems'. Poor wording on my part.
    I can imagine it's VERY hard to be put in the middle as a step parent....I have never been one. I didn't necessarily mean she wasn't involved, I meant the final decision really should be her husband's. ( This is only personal experience...but I know I would actually listen to my father as a younger teen, not my stepmother. So anything coming from her would have probably gotten a ' whatever' from mr at the time.)

    My step mother really hung in there!( As I am sure you have as well:) ) I treated her not so nicely at times, but she was always kind, patient, and most likely bit her tongue several times. I know that had she excluded me from events, or stopped inviting me to Christmas ( example) just because I only showed up then for the gifts, we wouldn't have the relationship we do today.
    I really commend step parents, you have authority....but only so much. You need to love the child, .....oh but not ' too much' or the bio mom may feel you are trying to step on toes etc. It is an incredibly difficult role definitely. I am sure most step parents have to have insurmountable patients, Grace, and humility to get through the ' teen' years. Again thanks for the insight!
     

    siren0119

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Sep 26, 2018
    I also didn't say you weren't involved....you aren't her parent though. These are decisions your husband needs to make.
    So I'm just going to address this specific statement.

    From a legal aspect, sure - the bio parent not the step parent is the one that has to make decisions, because the stepparent is not tied to the stepchild....in a LEGAL sense only.

    However, if you are in a marriage where the spouse has children from another relationship....and you are approaching it as though situations with the stepchild are not yours to deal with, YOU'RE DOING IT WRONG. A step parent who allows their spouse to bear the burden of dealing with uncomfortable situations relating to their children alone is not giving the spouse OR the non-custodial children their fair due. When you marry into a situation with children, you need to be involved in every aspect...even if the bio parent is the mouthpiece for legal reasons.
     

    stephk1981

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Oct 11, 2013
    So I'm just going to address this specific statement.

    From a legal aspect, sure - the bio parent not the step parent is the one that has to make decisions, because the stepparent is not tied to the stepchild....in a LEGAL sense only.

    However, if you are in a marriage where the spouse has children from another relationship....and you are approaching it as though situations with the stepchild are not yours to deal with, YOU'RE DOING IT WRONG. A step parent who allows their spouse to bear the burden of dealing with uncomfortable situations relating to their children alone is not giving the spouse OR the non-custodial children their fair due. When you marry into a situation with children, you need to be involved in every aspect...even if the bio parent is the mouthpiece for legal reasons.
    I was only addressing the ' situation' of the step daughter coming over ' for gifts' or high prices events etc. If the original poster and husband can't afford them, then absolutely don't do them......but, if they stop inviting step daughter to these things, that really may change the relationship she has with her dad and stepmom later. In this situation, I felt like it should be up to her dad, if he feels like it's worth potentially effecting his relationship with his daughter. I realize it is a financial cost, and step daughter is being a teenager( not the most grateful in the world) but, it is still his daughter and if it's a family event she should be extended an invitation.....to not extend an invitation should be her Dad's decision. Ultimately it may effect his relationship with her. I am not saying that married couples shouldn't make decisions together.... ultimately if a step mom chooses to be that involves( not all do) then that is amazing! However, if it comes down to whether we should still have daughter come to ( example) Christmas because she's only coming to receive her gift.....well uh, yes you need to invite her, she may not live with them, but if you wouldn't exclude a child that lives with you, why would you not invite one that didn't. This is an OPINION ONLY. It may be right/ wrong for some.
     
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    DisneyOma

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jul 27, 2015
    I asked for advice for myself and my husband, who is a little at lost on how to deal with this but not happy about this situation at all. His own father is fed up.. Odd you think ones partners life doesnt involve eachother and that you assume I lack grace.. Everyone else on this forum has had constructive advice.. unlike you.
    You mentioned a separation over a decade ago - but has there been no divorce? So is your boyfriend still legally married to another woman? That could be a huge part of the problem with his daughter. There's that thin thread of marriage still holding on, no real conclusion for the daughter to settle with. She has to be thinking why they don't finalize things - and why he's living with one woman but still married to another?
     
  • stephk1981

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Oct 11, 2013
    You mentioned a separation over a decade ago - but has there been no divorce? So is your boyfriend still legally married to another woman? That could be a huge part of the problem with his daughter. There's that thin thread of marriage still holding on, no real conclusion for the daughter to settle with. She has to be thinking why they don't finalize things - and why he's living with one woman but still married to another?
    I did wonder that also, but maybe stepdaughter's mother and father weren't ever married.....so perhaps just a break up? Now OP is married to dad......I am purely guessing, not assuming :)
     

    Resara

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Jul 8, 2019
    You mentioned a separation over a decade ago - but has there been no divorce? So is your boyfriend still legally married to another woman? That could be a huge part of the problem with his daughter. There's that thin thread of marriage still holding on, no real conclusion for the daughter to settle with. She has to be thinking why they don't finalize things - and why he's living with one woman but still married to another?
    They were never married.
     

    Resara

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Jul 8, 2019
    I think I may have some idea. Although I could see your intent, the first post (at least to me) also had that "You're not her parent, stay out of it, the child probably doesn't like you anyway" tone. As a stepmom I have read it many times said in different ways including the whole "the kids were there first" line. Gives off the impression that you're an unwanted accessory...on the shelf or in the closet when it comes to the child(ren) with no input. The thing is your spouse/parent (at least mine was) thinking the exact opposite. I tried the "you're not the parent stay out of it" method and my husband complained I wasn't involved enough.

    As a stepparent it was this delicate balancing act trying to please everyone. Be sensitive to the children they didn't ask for the divorce. Be sensitive to your husband/wife they have to put their child(ren) first. And you're just there putting up with everybody. It's a life of sacrifice which is fine; but given that, the "stay out of it you're not the parent" line of thinking can really get old.

    Finally, there's really no evidence in the original post that their relationship or lack of one has anything to do with the child's behavior and as plenty of folks have stated, they have experienced similar with the teens they created. I have as well. I could write something similar at times or the OP's husband could have posted instead. As I said, I understood your intent. Just trying to provide some possible insight to the other point of view.
    Very helpful. Thank you
     

    Resara

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Jul 8, 2019
    So I'm just going to address this specific statement.

    From a legal aspect, sure - the bio parent not the step parent is the one that has to make decisions, because the stepparent is not tied to the stepchild....in a LEGAL sense only.

    However, if you are in a marriage where the spouse has children from another relationship....and you are approaching it as though situations with the stepchild are not yours to deal with, YOU'RE DOING IT WRONG. A step parent who allows their spouse to bear the burden of dealing with uncomfortable situations relating to their children alone is not giving the spouse OR the non-custodial children their fair due. When you marry into a situation with children, you need to be involved in every aspect...even if the bio parent is the mouthpiece for legal reasons.
    Thanks for the advice everyone!
    (Fyi. We can afford whatever we decide to do if not wouldnt consider it and my husband was never married to her mother and we always invite her for Christmas)
    Back from a lovely holiday for the most part but we are both disappointed as on the last day she didnt speak to us except to say No and told us her mother would pick her up as soon as we returned (we had expected her to stay a few more days and had told her). Her father was upset but didnt want to fight. I understand.. parenting is tough.
    I cried After she left . As soon as we got home her mother arrived. No thank you. No appreciation... Nothing.. Step parenting is not easy either.
     
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