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bellydancer user not visiting

Bohemian: 246 posts
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Posted: 03 May 05, 21:55 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Dear Queenzoners,

I have a problem that I would appreciate your advice on. Its a bit of a long story but I'll try to keep it short.

My husband and I have five kids between us - his two from his first marriage, my two from my first marriage and our little two year old together. My two are 19 and 17, his two twelve and 9.

We had problems with my two because there were the often faced difficulties of a "co-joined" family plus the normal puberty. My husband, whilst a very loving and understanding man, had never had to deal with raising teenagers before, so whilst he tried really hard, he just couldn't handle it. Now when we started out together 3 years ago, we talked about raising "our" children and agreed that we would listen to each other and work together on things as a team. When it came to the problems with my two, I listened and took on board his advice and put it into action. Unfortunately, tried as we may and we did go to counselling (my two and my husband and I), sadly things did not work out and my two left and have been living together in my parents' house for about twelve months. I've slowly repaired the relationship with them and things have gotten a lot better all around but my husband is rather slow to forgive them and rather reluctant to give them a second chance.

Now its coming to problems with my husband's 9 year old daughter. Unfortunately, they live with their mother who doesn't discipline them and quite frankly is a very lazy parent. Not only that, my husband's daughter, whilst she is nine, acts like a six year old e.g. she pretends to be a baby all the time, talks like a baby - goo goo ga ga - and goes up to her father and says Dad da - you get the picture. There's other things as well but the crux of the matter is that my husband won't listen to me about her and if I try to talk to him he gets angry and says "their my kids". Just this past weekend I broke down in tears when visiting my mother-in-law trying to find a solution - she says she knows he spoils her rotten and doesn't discipline her properly and that she's his little princess. I don't want to come inbetween them, I don't want to start fights - I don't want to be the wicked stepmother - I'm a very caring loving person and I actually do care immensely for my husband's kids - but I'm at the end of my tether - your thoughts guys & gals????

"Everybody knows that rock attained perfection in 1974-its a scientific fact" Homer Simpson
Lisser user not visiting
Deity: 4794 posts
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Posted: 04 May 05, 11:12 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Very, very, very difficult thing to deal with. What sort of counseling did you go to? A family therapist? It didn't work I presume? You can always go to another therapist. The relationship you have with a family therapist has to flow easily. If it doesn't, you might as well be talking to a brick wall. Make sure you choose the right therapist for your family.

I can't and I don't think anyone on here could explain to you word for word on what exactly to do in this situation, but I'll make some suggestions if I may and you do what you please with them.

This is a matter of two, and in some cases three separate households if you count your children, coming together and trying to be the same household every other weekend (or whenever your husband gets his children and you get yours). Even if his children's mother was not lazy, it is doubtful that she would share the same parenting philosphies that you do. There is always going to be some friction. It is a good idea to accept that and focus more on how to deal with the friction when it comes.

Most of how this situation will be dealt with depends on how willing your husband is to stop babying his children. If he's not willing to then you should decide if you want to make a battle out of this. I would not choose to make a battle out of this. It is his child. He is responsible partly (his ex-wife the other part) for how he provides her with the skills to become a productive adult. You, as her stepmother have a role as well but not near as huge as her father does. Your husband might not respect your opinions or advice on how to raise children since yours chose to leave and live elsewhere. This may not be the case, but it could be. Will he ever tell you that? Maybe, maybe not.

If you want my advice, let your husband bear the brunt of this one...for now. Be there if you are needed by your husband and his children. For right now, let them work on this within their own circle. I'm thinking this 9 yr old is acting like this for exactly what she is getting, the extra attention. As long as your husband allows it, she'll continue. It's up to your husband when this stops. It isn't up to you or the nine year old. It won't matter how much you nag him or make suggestions.

I want you to understand why I'm asking that you keep your distance. It is bc most children put up a brick wall between themselves and "intruders." You are probably considered an intruder. You can't take the wall down. It is up to the child to let it come down. It will, gradually and it will depend on how you act as well.

I hope this helps. It's so hard to give advice for complex situations on a computer screen. Don't stress, stressing only makes it worse. Sometimes it is best to let things alone and not make a huge deal out of them...then they tend to fade on their own if they are allowed to.

Wo ist das kamerahhhhhhhhhhh!!!