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Vent, at the end of my rope with SD

I just need to vent, and hear some grounding advice. My SD is 12 and is a bit of a liar and tends to try to play the poor me card with her father. I try as hard as I can to treat her kindly and sweetly. I had a monster of a step mother  growing up so I know what not to do. I'm just baffled, hurt, tired and in need of a little advice. SInce day one the SD and BM had an issue with me; for no other reason then whatever they pulled put of the wind. Its getting to be out of control as of late, SD invited over a boy (she is 12!) when my SO and I were not home. Luckily nothing happened but the crazy hit the fan. Her phone was taken away from her and my SO was looking in it and in her phone im listed as (my name here) dads dick sucker.


wow, great. Nice to know that I went to ALL of her soccer games while her mother went to two. I drove her, (and we live an hour away) to birthday parties and church group. I make sure she has clothes to wear, (her mom has FOUR kids and NO job.) the adult in me knows that she is 'just a kid' and im trying to calm down , but after this (and a lot more) this is just worn me out. I feel like if im not buying her something then im the BAD GUY. im tired of being the bad guy, and at this point all I want to do is take a step to the left and not be anything to her.

Just let me have it, my brain is fried.

Re: Vent, at the end of my rope with SD

  • First and foremost, where is you husband in all this? He needs to have a sit down with her regarding what is an isn't appropriate and stick to it. She needs to apologize to you and he needs to start taking your side 100%. 

    Why are you the one doing all this for her? Why isn't her dad the one deciding what to buy her, if he's willing to drive all over for her etc? 

    I have a horrendous step mother as well so I get it. It's a fine line between being nice and being taken advantage of.

    I was also a 12 year old girl once and know what devious little beasts they can be. Often it's acting out because of the frustration of feeling powerless regarding what is going on in your own life. The "why" doesn't make it any less miserable for the people that are affected though. Some of it is also just seeing how much you can get away with. 

    Long run, you guys need counseling. Probably individual and family. Short term, get your H on the same page here. If he's not willing, I would seriously think long and hard about being with someone who isn't willing to be a team.


  • BlueBirdMBBlueBirdMB member
    500 Love Its 1000 Comments Second Anniversary Name Dropper
    edited December 2014
    Ugh I feel for you.  My mother was a step mother to two children who have always, to this day, treated her like shit.  They never grew out of it.  Neither her nor I (their half sister) were invited to either of their weddings.  When we see their children (they live far away  now and we don't see them often) we are introduced as "friends of Grandpa".  When they were children, their mother brainwashed them.  They would touch any food my mother made because it was "poisoned Jewish food", as an example.

    All this continued and still continues because my father has never stood up to them.  He has never demanded they respect my mother.  I blame their treatment of my mother about 90% on my dad and about 10% their mother.  Their mother is a crazy person (even they now realize their mother is crazy and miserable), but it was my father's responsibility to set them straight.  They went to counseling, it didn't help at all because my father was never convinced to stand up to his children.  He was so overwrought with "divorce father syndrome", he was petrified to ever really parent.
  • FYI - on thebump there is a blended families board.  

    Hopefully your H is on your side.

    If my 12yo DD had anything like that on her phone, she would not be using her phone for a LOOOOOOOONG TIME!  Heck, she might not  be sitting down for a long time.  That is completely unacceptable!  I hope your H is on the same page!

    It's ok to want to take a break from giving to your SD.  Let her dad drive her, make sure she has the gifts to bring to birthday parties.  Sometimes, if you step back, the step-child can get what they want - more time/effort from a bio-parent who seemingly can't be bothered.

    I would definately step back for now, and tell her you are angry at her for her actions and that is she wants any favors (rides, laundry, friends over, money), she'll have to ask her father.  You're not really stepping back if you're still doing everything for the house (shopping for groceries, making dinner, cleaning), but don't do anything specifically for her.  


  • Thanks for all the advice and yes I know that there is a blended family's group but for whatever reason I was having trouble posting and I really just needed to get this out in a healthy way. I agree 100% that her father needs to step up, we actually already attend couples counseling and that is currently one of the issues we are working on our blended family dynamic. My so and I talked about it and he said that he's going to call her up and have a conversation with her with me on the phone and then I'm going to pick her up in the next few days and how about sitdown talk about it. I just needed to get it all out so when I did sit down and have a conversation with my stepdaughter I wasn't festering with anger and irritation. And I think that the previous poster was right I'm just gonna take a step to the left and completely eradicate myself all together so that way I can't be the good guy but at least I cant be the bad guy either
  • I disagree with talking to her with you on the phone or you picking her up to have a talk. HE needs to step up and tell her this is unacceptable TO HIM. Until she has enough respect to really care what you think, he has to be the one disciplining here. He needs to leave you out of it for now.

    I think she would be more receptive and maybe think about her actions a bit more if she feels she dissapponted him and isn't able to twist it in her mind that he is just upset because you are. In the future maybe there will be a good time to bring it up and have a real conversation with her about it, but until she has some respect for you, you'll just be wasting your breath. 

    She is 12. She doesn't remotely get how you feel and won't for many more years. If I were you I would be pissed as hell too, please don't get me wrong. Her dad needs to get this is under control though. In the meantime, he can deal with her needs. 
    Ilumine
  • Why would YOU pick her up?  Her dad can pick her up.  It seems to me your SO is a rather weak parent.  Her behavior will continue until he steps it up.

    Oh, and the seeking attention from boys will continue until her dad is a strong presence in her life as well.  The boy over in an empty house will seem mild compared to other problems that will come as she gets older!  
    puppylove2014
  • Her father needs to deal with this 100%. There needs to be consequences and he needs to stick to them. You need to step back, he needs to be the one picking her up etc, if he can't then she doesn't get to do/go wherever it is.
  • justtrishjusttrish member
    First Comment
    edited December 2014
    I absolutely agree her father really needs to reprimand her for her inconceivable behavior at this point and as much as her disrespect towards me is unwarranted and probably coming from a hurt place that has little to nothing to do with me Still the issue at hand is hurt very salacious behavior At12 years old. Her father needs to have a separate conversation about the disrespect towards me but she will have to come over to our house and the two of us I think should have a discussion on her inviting over people that are not allowed over at our house especially when she is in the presence of our three-year-old son. Part of my heart truly is scared for her behavior because I feel like she is so young that when she turns 15 it's going to be 1000 times worse, she already has been bullied at school and my husband and I have been to the principals office because girls are going around calling her trashy and awful names. Clearly there's years worth of story missing in all of this but it was kind of just like the moment that broke the camels back
  • SueBear said:
    Why would YOU pick her up?  Her dad can pick her up.  It seems to me your SO is a rather weak parent.  Her behavior will continue until he steps it up.

    Oh, and the seeking attention from boys will continue until her dad is a strong presence in her life as well.  The boy over in an empty house will seem mild compared to other problems that will come as she gets older!  
    This 100% ^^^. I really hope she is getting counseling and her father as well. He needs to be the most important man in her life until she gets married. 

    I still think you need to stay out of the discipline and rule discussions all together. If she misbehaves and you are the only one present, it is ok to enforce the rules. Other than that, he needs to deal with her. She is screaming for his attention. Not both of yours, his. It seems to me she will just resent you being present and ignore the conversation. HE needs to build this relationship and trust. Just my opinion.
  • justtrish said:

    I just need to vent, and hear some grounding advice. My SD is 12 and is a bit of a liar and tends to try to play the poor me card with her father. I try as hard as I can to treat her kindly and sweetly. I had a monster of a step mother  growing up so I know what not to do. I'm just baffled, hurt, tired and in need of a little advice. SInce day one the SD and BM had an issue with me; for no other reason then whatever they pulled put of the wind. Its getting to be out of control as of late, SD invited over a boy (she is 12!) when my SO and I were not home. Luckily nothing happened but the crazy hit the fan. Her phone was taken away from her and my SO was looking in it and in her phone im listed as (my name here) dads dick sucker.


    wow, great. Nice to know that I went to ALL of her soccer games while her mother went to two. I drove her, (and we live an hour away) to birthday parties and church group. I make sure she has clothes to wear, (her mom has FOUR kids and NO job.) the adult in me knows that she is 'just a kid' and im trying to calm down , but after this (and a lot more) this is just worn me out. I feel like if im not buying her something then im the BAD GUY. im tired of being the bad guy, and at this point all I want to do is take a step to the left and not be anything to her.

    Just let me have it, my brain is fried.

    If they lying is more than just a little white lie thing: get her counseling. Nip this lying bullshit in the bud NOW before it really gets out of hand.

    Contact your district's child study team for a name of a good child psychiatrist/psychologist.

    None of this sounds like tween rebellion or "genration gap" behavior.

    Your H needs to be a stronger parent.Sounds to me like he is letting this young lady get away with proverbial murder. he needs to step up to the plate and let her know what is acceptable and what is not.

    You feel like you have sto spend and spend?

    Let her earn an allowance!

    In exchange for doing what she is supposed to do -- help out around the house, get relatively good grades and be a good kid, give her an allowance.: $20 a week should be fine.

    Let her learn to save and spend her pennies wisely -- it's also good practice for the future for when she really needs how to balance a budget when she is living on her own.

    Let the allowance be contingent upon doing what is expected of her. "Dock her pay" if she breaks rules, gets a detention in school, etc  
  • And to answer some questions the reason why I drive her to places is because her mother point-blank refuses not for any reason other then she likes to whine and say that she has no money to pay for gas, my husband works all the time he's a broker at a real estate firm and usually on the weekends he's more busy than ever so if her mother refuses and her father is just busy working at the time of an engagement of course I would step up and drive her to a sport team event that she has to play or birthday party that she's been invited to. I like to try and include her because I do have a three-year-old son from another relationship that's been brought into this and my husband and I would love to have another child together and what we really want is a not perfect but at least United blended family.

    I didn't just pick him I picked his kids too so I feel like I need to be maybe not apparent to them but a support system.

    Unfortunately the amount of disrespect and utter regard for everything I've done for her has been swept under the table and yes I agree some very serious counseling needs to happen for her because I think she is upset about a lot of things . I met her father eight years after her parents started filing for separation so it's not that I took him away from her or her family or her mother even and her mother has already remarried and had a child with the man that she cheated on my husband with.

    Yes my husband needs to pull his head out of the sand step up and really be the parent he should. I guess I just feel like I should have some say of what goes on in my own house because the disrespect walks right into the door with her and the attitude and I'm not going out let my son or myself walk around on eggshells because she is angry.

    Thanks for the advice it's nice to hear other points of view
  • It's easy to blame you. She sees her mom struggling and probably has the mind set, that if Mom & Dad were together mom wouldn't be struggling so much. But that won't happen, especially with you in the picture. So if she makes your life miserable then maybe you'll leave & mom & dad get back together. The other thing is that she may be so miserable at home that when she comes to your house that see lets out all her pent up frustration on you. Part of what she is going through is teens but don't just blow it off. You may want to try to find her a good counselor, for nothing else for her to have someone to vent her feelings too that is a neutral party. At that age they go through so many emotions and have a hard time knowing how to deal with them. I'm sure she has things that she wants to talk to someone about but doesn't want to talk to mom, dad or you because you will "judge her & possibly punish her" Having a great counselor helped my niece at that age learn how to deal with her feelings and anger issues. Hopefully that is something everyone can get on board with. Then try to come up with some rules with consequences so she knows in advance what the punishments will be. If you do them in advance & present them to her with Dad and having dad be the one that present them it may make things easier. Also make sure that at least once a month dad & daughter go out together for dinner or ice cream or something. Just so that they get some time one on one time together.

  • justtrish said:
    And to answer some questions the reason why I drive her to places is because her mother point-blank refuses not for any reason other then she likes to whine and say that she has no money to pay for gas, my husband works all the time he's a broker at a real estate firm and usually on the weekends he's more busy than ever so if her mother refuses and her father is just busy working at the time of an engagement of course I would step up and drive her to a sport team event that she has to play or birthday party that she's been invited to. I like to try and include her because I do have a three-year-old son from another relationship that's been brought into this and my husband and I would love to have another child together and what we really want is a not perfect but at least United blended family. I didn't just pick him I picked his kids too so I feel like I need to be maybe not apparent to them but a support system. Unfortunately the amount of disrespect and utter regard for everything I've done for her has been swept under the table and yes I agree some very serious counseling needs to happen for her because I think she is upset about a lot of things . I met her father eight years after her parents started filing for separation so it's not that I took him away from her or her family or her mother even and her mother has already remarried and had a child with the man that she cheated on my husband with. Yes my husband needs to pull his head out of the sand step up and really be the parent he should. I guess I just feel like I should have some say of what goes on in my own house because the disrespect walks right into the door with her and the attitude and I'm not going out let my son or myself walk around on eggshells because she is angry. Thanks for the advice it's nice to hear other points of view
    You are interested in having a child with him?

    I suggest you put that plan on hold until he can prove he can effectively and firmly and fairly parent his daughter.

    If he cannot do that, what is he going to do if you and he have another child enter the picture?

    He should make an appointment with child study himself and speak to that person --- if he is at odds how to parent his daughter he can get some good suggestions from that individual.

    What I suggest:

    Rules!

    It is very likely that girl has none at home with her mother.

    Start in your home and she is to comply (better than saying obey) with the rules you set --- reasonable ones like:

    Be civil to all adults
    Be reasonably neat when it comes to her room, cleaning up after herself if she has a snack, etc
    Attain good grades in school: they need not be straight As but she certainly has to get a decent passing grade in anything --- and if she is having trouble with a subject, she can come to you and her dad and the 3 of you can arrive at a solution together: there are tutors, etc.
    Stay out of trouble in general
    Have a decent group of friends -- this means no class cutters, delinquents or kids who get into trouble in school and or with their parents.

    She should have no trouble keeping up with a sensible list of 'demands" like the ones I out lined.

    Consider the allowance; let it be contingent upon compling to rules you and your H have set.
  • So to reply to s few things:
    She sees her mother struggling because her mother has not had a job in ten years. That's right, ever since they separated she has not worked. Not my fault. Her mother had another child a year ago not my fault either, and just to really clarify her mother is living with a man that does drugs in the house and steals from the SD.

    Also it's not my job to try and coax my DH to have daddy daughter time. That's on him. Yes he needs some work. I know. Hence us being in therapy for a year.


    And while yes I would love another child I will not do so till it's s healthy option for us as a family.

    Thanks tarpon for the rules outline , the SD is refusing to come over and spend time so I have no updates to give at this point. Again that's no longer my battle

    However rules need to set.

    Ladies thanks for the advice I'm might come off a tad feisty today sadly last night my oldest SS got into a car accident and it's been a long night. He is fine so I'm feeling blessed but tired
  • I don't think anyone thinks any of this is your fault, they were just trying to point out you SD's perspective. She's 12. She doesn't get that her mothers (and fathers) life choices have led to her predicament.

    I do wonder how many kids your H, who doesn't seem to have this parenting thing worked out, has. And with how many women? There's probably more to the story here. 

    I do have to say trashing the mom doesn't make anyone look good. Your H did choose her to procreate with after all. If she's such a lazy irresponsible person, what does that say about his ability to make good decisions?

    You sound like a really nice person who wants to make this all work out and everyone happy. I just hope you realize this is more a DH problem than anything else. I'm glad you're in counselling. Hopefully you can add family counselling to that.
  • If you must know, he has three all by the same women.

    Also if that was not the case I'm not sure what that would have to do with anything

    Furthermore I'm not bashing and I have never talked badly about the bm in front of his kids.

    She is lazy they also met at age 15 people do stupid things when they are young it was get married right after school very old school Italian life. He was raised in it and thank God he left that behind.
  • The fact that she is bullied and called trashy is alarming to me - where did that come from?  If she has friends through soccer and birthday party invites, maybe that is not so alarming, but I would get her into counseling for the bullying. It can make kids suicidal, and her loss of control at school might be why she is lashing out.  Home life out of control (drug using, stealing stepdad), school not a safe place (bullying).  

    I do think she needs rules at your home.  And the opportunity to earn money through chores (and the money stays at your house where her stepdad can't get to it).  Why does she get to choose whether or not she comes to your home?  Is there a CO?  If not, why not?  She should be at your house because it is your family time.  She is not living in a good situation if her SD/mom's SO is a drug user.  

    I would also wonder......something like her phone name for you could be something to get attention/points with her mom, and might not have anything to do with her true feelings for you.  Just a thought.  Sometimes children treat the people the worst because they know they can rely on them.  You still DESERVE respect and the phone name is unacceptable, but there is another POV.  

    There is a website called "steptogether.org" that has the "disengagement essay."  I don't know if you need to go full force with disengagement, but some things - like if she asks you for money, you need to tell her to ask her dad for it.  Just tell her as long as she is so disrespectful the constant giving on your part has come to an end and until she improves her attitude, her dad needs to take the lead. AND LET HIM.  You are right to realize that some things were not your job.


    You said she had a boy over while you were not home.  Was your 3 yo there at the time?  

     I think should have a discussion on her inviting over people that are not allowed over at our house especially when she is in the presence of our three-year-old son. 

    She should get paid if she is babysitting, but at the same time, you have the right to expect that your rules (no guests over while you watch the baby) are followed.

    I do think you are on a bit of a high horse with BM.  She had four kids - three of them with your H!  The other one with her current H (even if he is a drug user).  If you and H had another child, he'd have four kids (and he isn't exactly an involved parent!).  So she and your H would be "even."  People (at least I) assumed your H had children by many women because it seems like fathered children but isn't interested in doing the difficult job of actually PARENTING them.   



    image "Before you diagnose yourself with depression or low self esteem, first make sure you are not, in fact, just surrounded by assholes.
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