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Dealing with Disrespectful Stepchildren

By: Elizabeth Grace - Updated: 21 Aug 2018 | comments*Discuss
 
Dealing With Disrespectful Stepchildren

It can be very hard for a parent to deal with their disrespectful children, but even harder for stepparents, who may not feel that they have the authority to change the way that their stepchildren behave. Allowing kids to be disrespectful, though, isn’t doing them any favours, as all children need to understand the importance of treating others with care and respect. Once a home environment of less than stellar child behaviour has been established, it can be hard to turn it around – but it is not impossible.

Establishing Reasonable Boundaries for Stepchildren

Every household needs rules. Society operates on a system of behavioural guidelines and one of the most important tasks of parents is to prepare their children to become well-functioning members of society, and that training begins in the home. Teaching children to speak and behave in a manner that honours other people helps them to understand appropriate behaviour as well as gives them a base of self-respect and good impulse control.

Children can and should be encouraged to express their emotions, but it is important that they learn to do so without hurting others. Disrespectful back-talking, refusal to comply with house rules, or selfish expectations are all examples of habits that children can easily acquire if their parents and stepparents do not show them that these behaviours will not be tolerated. Kids need to have a clear idea of what is expected of them and they must also be made aware of the consequences, should they choose to behave otherwise.

Enlisting the Help of your Spouse

Stepparents who have the support of their spouses have a much better chance of getting the stepchildren to treat them with respect and comply with house rules than those whose spouses fail to stand up and make their positions clear. Especially in the beginning, kids may be more inclined to take direction from their natural parent, rather than from a stepparent, who they may view as an unwelcome intruder. The adults in the home need to decide together on a set of behavioural guidelines for the children and then present them together, sending the message that obstinate or disrespectful behaviour will not be tolerated by either parent.

Setting Limits and Respectful Discipline

Teaching kids to be respectful requires that they be disciplined in a kind and respectful manner. It is unreasonable to expect that parents and stepparents can utilise harsh methods of discipline and then have children who do not emulate this type of behaviour. Kids may learn a bit from listening to a line-list of rules, but they are more heavily influenced by observing the important adults in their lives. Gentle, yet firm guidance will help kids to understand that they do not need to behave in disrespectful ways in order to be noticed and understood.

Breaking Through when Stepchildren are Stubborn

Some children seem determined to be defiant, despite the efforts of their parents and stepparents to garner their cooperation. Wild or disrespectful behaviour can be symptomatic of a variety of conditions, so if a parent finds that their children are out of control or disrespectful in more than one area of their lives (for example, they act out at home and at school), they may want to seek the advice of their GP to see of their child may be suffering from an undiagnosed behaviour disorder. Teachers and school officials may find it difficult to deal with kids who aren’t able to control their behaviour, so seeking input from children’s teachers can be invaluable. Effective treatment is available once an accurate diagnosis has been made, so parents should not delay in seeking help if they feel that their children’s disrespectful behaviour may be the result of a physical or emotional condition.

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I discovered this site through a google search in a desperate bid to get some advice and tips on being a stepparent. I live with my partner and his 5 year old- it's a long story but he has had her on his owns since she was a baby. Things were going well and I was doing great at adjusting to being a step-mum. But just lately I am really struggling with getting her to listen to me, and it's since she has been spending more and more time with her bio mum. I know and understand that she is only 5 but she never listens to me, and is more likely to listen to other people, she blatantly disregards anything I am asking her to do or not to do, and thinks that she can do what she wants all the time. I know kids can be difficult sometimes but just lately it is all the time. I try to be nice to her and discipline her as and when I have to but nothing seems to be working and it's all getting to me to the point where I have to lock myself in the bathroom for half an hour and cry my eyes out. I am not sure if her bio mum is saying things to her about me as I am not around when she has to go and see her (which is once a fortnight) because that's just the type of person that she is, or whether it is just a phase the little one is going through but right now I feel so lost and all I want to do is cry all the time because I am overwhelmed and just don't know what to do. My partner helps me as and when he can but I'm really struggling with getting her listen and respect me....
AnnaB - 21-Aug-18 @ 2:12 PM
My husband & I have been married for 8.5 years & together 10. He has 2 children of his own & one that he raised not knowing if is his or not. I have 2 of my own. From the very beginning his children lived with his mother, as the kids mom was in prison. When we got together I already had my own place. He moved in to my place with myself & my children. For 3 years we only got his kids every other weekend which was great cause they weren't living with us full time. All girls & all drama. Then when they're mother was rehabilitated she wanted her girls. He glady gave them to her. That only lasted 3 years & mom started doing & selling drugs. The oldest now 17 wanted to stay with mom the middle one went back to grandma's & we got the youngest at 12. For the last 3 years that we've had her it's been hell. She's been caught smoking weed at school the 1st year we had her, second year was kicked out of school for writing an offensive saying to a teacher on the white board & now at age 15 we find empty beer bottles in her room. Needless to say I'm finally done. I will not allow her to corupt my 10 year old son. My soon to be ex husband only gives her a slap on the wrist. All his kids have been very disrespectful & have stolen my things. I can't believe it took me this long to finally leave. Please say prayers for me that I can find a place that I can afford. I'm starting over from scratch. I want nothing but my bed & kids beds. Sincerly, FED UP Mommy of only 2!
Mommyofonly2 - 20-Aug-18 @ 2:23 AM
I'm really lost right now. I have been dating on and off a widower for a year with three children aged 5,6,9. I have two boys aged 7 And 11. My (now ex) has the children full time where as I have mine half of the week. I took on his kids with open arms..I even visted their mum's grave at Christmas to support them. I played with them, chatted with them and treated them as my own. I also had my boys too and tried too treat all the kids the same which I did. I was fun and exciting. My ex doesn't have rules with his kids and they trash his house, they kick, spit , fight and name call their dad and my children.Their dad also smacks the two boys a lot which I don't like. I have also had my ex call me nasty names too. He says sorry and says he will make things right and he knows he needs to sort a routine with his kids as they stay up until 10pm most nights. But nothing really comes about. I did reward charts etc but my ex never followed it through so I stopped helping. I did notice he guilt tripped me over his children a lottoo and seemed to forget about my boys ? When myself and my boys stayed at his, his children would kick, hit and call my kids. I tried to be fair and tell all the kids it's wrong. I feel my ex put a lot of pressure on me to be mum to his kids. He didn't really like me doing my own thing and put his children on me emotionally a lot. As the months have gone by his kids have gone worse and his 6 year old bullies my 11 year old! He calls him fat, ugly, I don't love him, he's rubbish at everything . My son knows he can't hit him as he's only 6...His same son and his youngest does it to my yougest too. My son hits back but I then have to tell my son it's wrong to hit!I tell my ex what his boys do and he just smacks them!? Yet with my boys it's toys taken away, time out, teach them right from wrong! Things got so bad last week on holiday because his 6 year old picked on my eldest so bad my eldest went mental at me. Turns out he was so angry and hurt at constantly being picked on. I approached my ex who called my son a big baby and started saying it's because my sons hates women he's angry. It hurt me very bad!! Next day I went to the beach alone with my boys, had a great time too! But my ex followed with his kids near us...to top it off my ex bought his kids a toy beach rocket knowing my kids wanted one too. My boy's watched upset as they played asking why my ex just sorted his kids out? We didn't speak for a couple of days as I was so upset. We eventually sat and spoke but his kids started again with mine. I can't tell his 6 year old as he just laughs at me. When my kids tell my ex what his son has done he turns a blind eye ... It's been such an eye opener as to how he feels I should be with his kids 247 be their mum and feel their behaviour is acceptable? They don't clean up after their mess, have no toilet manners, greedy with sweets and food, trash the house...ye
Beckyloub211082 - 15-Aug-18 @ 11:02 PM
@Ash - it's always tough. How is your partner with your kids? The thing is we always view our own kids through rose-tinted glasses. I love my kids obviously, but my wife hates my kids. Yet, she praises her kids all the time (who in my eyes one comes across as being nice but is sneaky and the other rude and obnoxious). It's been four years both of us with two kids each, mine only over every other weekend. In fairness, I think it's hard taking on another person's kids when there are resentments. But it's taken its toll on our marriage and we are on the verge of separating because of my kids not hers. I am expected to put up and shut up, which I do most of the time. It is always about her kids, never mine. I feel guilty about that and try to make up for it with my kids, which the wife resents. Mine feel left out and they hate her for favouriting her kids first so it's lose all the way. Just showing it from the other side.
Jim66 - 23-Jul-18 @ 10:00 AM
It’s been 5 years. The first year was great.... then I watched it all begin to unfold. After BM met me and was completely disrespectful the SS started to be the same way. Playing a victim to his father and acting as if he was so unhappy because of me. And as it all came out he admitted it’s because I have rules and chores and because I don’t buy him things. Seriously! It’s an interracial relationship and BM likes to refer to me as “ the white girl”. SS won’t listen to a word I say unless it’s beneficial for him. I’ve told his Father Time and time again how tired I am of it. But SS’s manipulation is unreal. There’s always an excuse for him. He lies, sneaks out of the house and thinks buying dad gifts or doing good in school or in a sport makes things better (sick to even say, it does) I’m at my limit. He is a senior this year so I thought to myself... just one more year. But now him commuting from home to school is being considered. I have 3 children of my own. Their dad a drug addict, alcoholic who’s in prison currently... they witnessed abuse and had it rough for so many years yet they are the most caring, respectful kids and I’m proud of them. I wouldn’t make excuses for them if they weren’t. I’d set them straight. I’d not stand for disrespect. Needless to say... I’m ready to move on with my life. This tidbit I’ve written is only a small piece of what I’ve experienced. I’m turned off by the fact that a child and his mother can work a grown man like a puppet.
Ash - 22-Jul-18 @ 12:54 AM
My stepchild's "father" was a sperm donor. My wife and him "dated" (while dating others) until she got pregnant. Then she decided to make a relationship. The day she came home from the hospital he went to the bar. Never paid child support. Blew off visits except to the extent he could use them to control. Eventually I got together with her and did a stepparent adoption. In hindsight, she was just using me. My "daughter," who just turned 12, will order $100+ meals. When I ask my wife if this is necessary she glares at me. I have no say, no respect, and definitely no control over the child. A 12 year-old literally dictates to me what will happen knowing if I don't comply her mother will throw a fit. To put things in perspective, her fits include calling my supervisors at work to sabotage my career (she doesn't work and hasn't since the adoption). Don't run from these predators. Sprint. Fly. Get out of their orbit. Let the father's of the love children (who, I'm told in a frequent bout of verbal abuse -- despite never paying nor taking visits -- is much, much better endowed than me) deal with them. Ignore the pleas; if they had a child with a slug there's something wrong with them.
Fred - 1-Jun-18 @ 8:51 PM
I met my partner just over 2 years ago. He lives with his 18 year old daughter full time and 14 year old daughter splits her time between us and mum who lives locally after leaving a few year ago. We now have a baby daughter together and both are very good with her and accepting but eldest is very critical of my choice to breastfeed and generally any parenting decisions I make. She herself is desperate to settle and have kids but seems to think she can do it all better than me. Her attitude and behaviour generally isn't great, all the family complain about how she strops when she can't get her own way. I've tried hard to be understanding of everything that's happened in the past but now that I have a baby her criticisms hurt. I don't see her leaving home any time soon but am struggling to see where I will get the strength from to carry on. I often feel like taking my daughter and running away but I love my partner and want to be with him.
GemmaT - 24-May-18 @ 5:48 PM
@Charlie I am separating from my partner I have decided to live alone as after only a year I cannot tolerate the stress and the resentment I feel towards his daughters. I am moving back to my flat that I had before I lived with him, it feels sad and a backwards step but I am too weary to continue. I don't know how or if we will continue in our relationship as any mention from him of them makes me feel ill and they have created such a big division between us. I really thought I could overcome these issues but I was wrong and I don't want to live miserably either! I just wanted to share this as this is a valuable site as at least I know I am not alone.
Lauren - 17-May-18 @ 1:58 PM
Thank you everyone for sharing..very difficult, frustrating. My bf evicted his 25 y.o. disrespectful man-child. We have his 12 yr old full time. He tries to act much like his older brother. His behavior has extended to write ups on a wkly basis being sent home, suspended, does not want to respect any authority. Will mostly tow the line when dads around (towards me) but still responds in front of him very rude, or tries to ignore what I say. Idk why my bf finds it so hard to discipline him more appropriate for his age..sense, "if you want to be suspended, we have a lot of chores at home for you those days", I've explained to my bf that if he doesn't get more tough on him, it will soon be too late I fear for his behavior to improve. He sees his mother on a regular basis, we get along with her, therefore that is not his issue. Big brother is now living with mommy so now 12 yr old sees him as well on a regular basis. My thing is this, either bf will stand behind me on making changes or I simply will not have it. As much as I love my bf, I will not live miserably for the next however many yrs. No thank you!
Charlie - 15-May-18 @ 10:19 PM
@Ann - you're so right. I've tried. I have sooooooooooo tried and I have had enough! I just cannot deal with the dread of knowing they are coming over which lasts for days. Then I am so relieved when they have gone. I can't continue to go through this. Who knew the effect three small children could have on an adult person.
Mich - 15-May-18 @ 2:32 PM
I'm reading all of these comments and wanting to yell and scream to all of you to run like the wind i was hopeful , thought things would change , thought if I did the right things the kids would come around but here I am15 years later wasted dealing with the constant disrespect passive aggressiveness ,lying , sneakiness and all instigated by the bio mom --trust me it is not worth it!!!!!!!! if it's not working out now it's not going to work out 5 years... unless all of you or on board nothing will change and don't think that the bio mom is going to come around or that your husband is suddenly going to support you they just get sick of it all and it ends up in a bigger mess than when you started and believe me is the truth I have many many friends going through the same thing What's worse is that my two children have had to deal with the constant battles that have insued over the last 15 years --fortunately my children are extremely successful and well-educated unfortunately my step-children with the upbringing by their parents have been in jail they'vehad so many issues and trust me I did everything I could to wake the two of them up to where their kids were headed --get out while you can!!!!!
Ann - 15-May-18 @ 3:42 AM
One of my biggest problems is the parents who watch the kids being disrespectful and ignores it until you the adult start lashing back now they hear the convo and wants to intervene and check the adult for how they are talking to the kids meanwhile the child says and does whatever they want without boundaries or consequence
Jay - 14-May-18 @ 1:43 PM
@Sinem - such a sad story, but if you have to move you have to. The fact you are sidelined and can't even eat with your hubby because the kids are jealous is not good. Take a step back. It doesn't mean you have to leave your relationship. But maybe living apart until the kids leave home is the best thing to do. Best of luck - hugs. remember - it's your fault - judging by the comments on here everyone feels the same.
Elliec - 10-May-18 @ 2:30 PM
Same here suffering and ready to leave my beloved husband because of stepkids. 13 yr old girl and 17 yr old boy. Boy is fine he hates my guts by at least he is respectful. The girl is driving me up the wall. She is so rude mean spirited andspiteful little girl. From day one I tried to find common ground to be friends with them but they hate my guts. I have been called idiot, I should leave their home even though they come 2-3 days a week they want me to leave. Their mom is dating but she’s too tough unlike they’re dad they are not giving her hard time as much as I’m getting it. Today I finally spoke to my husband and I told him I am moving out. Cannot take this anymore. My husband is too nice he doesn’t want to be tough to them. I cannot even sit with him to eat while kids are around in case they get jealous. We always sit in separate rooms ( he with kids me if I’m not out I stay in my bedroom). This is no life. I’m sure God will forgive me if I leave this stressful marriage.
Sinem - 9-May-18 @ 2:45 AM
Omg. I know the feeling. I am constantly being disrespected, yelled at, cursed at by one SS. He is so mean, thinks he is a badass, treats me SM like crap. Only when his dad is not here lately he's doing it around his dad now. I have tried numerous times to talk to his dad about. He doesn't take it seriously. Take phone away. Wow ok. That does nothing for him. He does again and again. Its been two years since its been this way. I am so ready to leave. Our marriage is breaking down because of this. I can't live in this household anymore the way he acts. I can't be myself. I cant laugh. I'm on eggshells around him. He's 13 and very selfish. I cant cope. I can't talk to him. Tried that. He hates me. Everyone is saying it's his puberty. Uh no. I don't believe that one bit. He is nice to everyone else but me. Disobeys house rules. Messy room. Cant flush toilets. Ridiculous.
Eh - 7-May-18 @ 1:10 AM
I struggle with many of the same issues. My two step sons are spoiled beyond belief by their mother and her parents. (They could literally bully another kid to the point of the child changing schools and they would say that the bullied kid just isn’t smart enough to get their humor)Their stepfather is so quiet and a bookworm and they walk all over him. Their mother does nothing and only cares about signing them up for as many baseball teams as possible because “they’re the future of the MLB.” Their mother and her parents wait on them hand and foot and tell them they are perfect and not to listen to anyone that tells them differently. When they come to stay with their father and I, I’m always overcome with dread. Simple tasks like closing an exterior door or flushing a toilet are too strenuous for them and they only follow rules if their dad is within their range of sight. They often lie to myself and my parents (we live in and pay rent for their in law apartment) and have complete disregard for the hard work we put in to keep our home clean. Their mother refuses to work and instead babysits because a regular 9-5 is too stressful and exhausting for her yet she is on the horn the second child support isn’t in her hand starting the morning of payday. She has a history of withholding the kids from my SO because he refuses to give her more money than mandated by child support and often talks poorly of him in front of the kids and frequently makes jabs at me for not always being able to go to the kids practices and games. She refuses to discipline them and if she does she almost immediately changes her mind because she doesn’t want them to be mad at her. They often decided that they want to go home if we cannot afford to take them to theme parks or expensive events that they’re mother said we would take them to without talking to us and it seems that no matter how many times we repeat ourselves they just don’t want to have to do anything. I love my SO so much but he hates when I try to explain that his children need to be more respectful and to follow simple expectations. I’m starting to wonder if I should call off our engagement because of them even though it would be devastating to lose our relationship.
KD - 6-May-18 @ 3:38 AM
@EssieM @TashV - so many of us women still focus on the needs of others without putting ourselves first. Sometimes I feel like I'm going to explode as there is no escape. I have a step daughter and 2 stepsons - every week there is a different issue and even though they live with their mum, it takes me days to recover when they go home and I spend the rest of the time analysing their behaviour and what they said and the tone they said it, enough to drive me bonkers. I'm suffering for my sanity. I'm with you all the way...LOL.
Laur78 - 23-Apr-18 @ 1:53 PM
@TashV Thank you for taking the time to post in reply. As much as I’m saddened to here your situation is similar to mine, it helps to know someone understands and I’m not alone. I’ve been encouraged by your approach and am going to focus on trying to tolerate my SD whilst keeping my own personal boundaries ie try to walk away from manipulative behaviour even when DH chooses not to. I am also going to focus on myself and my needs first which I haven’t done since getting married. I wish you strength for your situation and hope you find a way through x
EssieM - 21-Apr-18 @ 4:25 PM
@EssieM - the fact you have a good relationship with your SD is good and the fact your SS is not living with your surely must help somewhat. It's understandable your husband wants to support his son, he is his son after all and it's made even more difficult if he has mental-health issues. At the same time I understand how difficult it is to remove yourself from the situation when you dislike your SS, it seeps through even if you try to let it not and even if you don't see him. I don't like my partner's sons. I tolerate them. I find them cold, unemotional and selfish to me yes, but even to my partner who doesn't see it. I've asked him to stop mentioning them - but it doesn't work. I'm at breaking point too - because sometimes there is seemingly no way out. I can't really help with advice as I need it myself - but I can say I empathise and you are not on your own.
TashV - 19-Apr-18 @ 3:24 PM
After 2 years of disrespect, silent treatment, rudeness and other things, from my SS, he admitted to doing it on purpose saying he hated me. His mom walked out on him and his sister as children after having multiple affairs. His birth mom neglected him all his life until the past 5 years. I accept she is his mom and he doesn't want to see anything negative about her - both kids are emotionally scarred and SS is in denial about his mom abandoning them. My husband has never given them responsibility in the house or boundaries but they were pretty well behaved if a little pampered. SS is now 20, suffering a mental illness (which he was being supported in my me and his father until he decided to quit the treatment program) and is very immature. He accuses me of being cruel and unkind to him and his sister which is totally untrue when I've treated both with patience and love. SD is younger but more mature, we have a good relationship.SS chose to move in with his mom 3 months ago but continues to disrespect me and tell lies about me. He manipulates his father who gives in and doesn't address his behavior as much as I think he should and ignores a lot. I feel unsupported by my husband who is stuck in the middle but wants to be buddies with his son. I am trying to disengage from SS but finding it extremely difficult (any advise please?). I am distancing myself from his parents and family who know the situation and take SS side. I'm in a lonely and isolated position and at breaking point in my marriage.
EssieM - 17-Apr-18 @ 9:37 PM
@victoria - it's not good if it gets physical. This is more about your other-half than his kids. Your OH shouldn't shove you in front of anyone. If my hubby tried doing this to me I'd walk.
Christinex - 12-Apr-18 @ 3:42 PM
Hi. I see that there are a lot of forums with stepkids and the faults of the parents, but what about if it gets physical? Is mine the worst case or do these matters not get physical and I know they're not supposed to ever. My husband last summer felt I was in his face about his 8 year old daughter who resides out of state and shoved me in the front yard in front of her and my 8 year old son who is not biologically his. Arguing in front of kids is one thing, but to physically harm a spouse over your child, really? My husband and his ex don't have a good upbringing if you follow what I'm saying. I'm a blessing to these people and I don't need to stay, let alone for my son's sake. Please. I've tried other sites and found no answers due to how old they were. I know it's ultimately my decision. Advise please and thank you!
victoria - 11-Apr-18 @ 10:59 PM
@Wow - indeed. Some of your observations are correct. But it's not as cut and dried as what you make out. Some situations are just plain difficult and a matter of destructive jealousies, resentments and hatreds from both sides. It's hard to give respect to someone who hates you from the off.
Mickey** - 3-Apr-18 @ 12:36 PM
I see so much if this making if demands upon children. Maybe the adults should have thought of their own poor conduct or betrayal, before they ever drug their kids into this situation. I even see admonition about marital vows: "forsaking all others". Maybe the fact that you forsook your vows, and your children, is what got you here. I've lived this, from both sides if the equation. My strpmonsters were, and I didn't conduct myself in such a selfish, self centered way, so I never became a step monster. Certainly, not being a main component in the destruction of those children's lives, families, and homes goes a long way in this. #1? Don't be a creep. #2. Don't be the problem, and pretend that you aren't. #3. If you've already proven that deception and beteayal ate your Forte's, then the onus is on you to prove you won't do it to the children. Again. #4 Don't just assume, or pretend, that the rules are different at the other parents home. Or that this is the problem. #5. Don't treat your children as though they are more lived, more important, or more valuable than the step children. #6. Stop treating the ex like they are the threat, it the problem, if you were. #7. If you want respect, it's a two way street. Especially if you've disrespected, and hurt them, in the first place. #8. If you're a bad person, of low character, and you lack moral rectitude, then own that. They don't have to like you, much less respect you, if you're a lousy person of lie morality.
Wow - 2-Apr-18 @ 4:54 AM
@Mumof3 it's definitely the BM and your hubby. Your SS is in a loyalty bond thanks to his mother's jealousy and insecurities foe you. And your hubby need to be addressing gis rude behavior everytime it happens (mine didn't want to chastize sd 'every visit'). I went through this with SD now 25, since she was 7 (hot/cold behavior). I have disengaged from her 2 years ago to save my feelings, sanity and marriage. My hubby has addressed her behavior towards me over the years (in a separate room) but she is now even more disrespectful towards her dad. Like mines, your hubby is afraid to lose his son and feels like if he put his foot down your ss will stop coming around and his BM will encourage it since she doesn't want your ss to like you anyway. He feels stuck in the middle. Your SS blame you for his parents failed relationship and just merely existing. Do what I did and protect yourself and disengage from doing anything for your ss. Just be polite (hi, bye, with a smile.. not even how are you) and do your own thing when ss come over. In other words,stay out their way. Even if your hubby insists make up something that needs to be done (never say your son doesn't want me around, etc..) or make plans with girlfriends to do a girls day. I told my hubby, "you can have whatever relationship you want with your daughter but I'm done trying". He didn't like it at first and probably still doesn't but he has seen how much better our marriage has gotten because of my disengagement. I no longer ask about her or "nag" him about addressing her disrespect or rude behavior because I have mentally withdrawn from my SD. Nothing she does or say hurt/upset me. When the stepkids/adults know that they can't hurt you or get a reaction out of you anymore they realize their games (or manipulation)no longer works on you and you no longer care, they will either find a new target or take it out on the person they really have the issue with, which is their dad/mom, your spouse.
Nicola - 30-Mar-18 @ 6:33 PM
@Mumof3 it's definitely the BM and your hubby. Your SS is in a loyalty bond thanks to his mother's jealousy and insecurities foe you. And your hubby need to be addressing gis rude behavior everytime it happens (mine didn't want to chastize sd 'every visit'). I went through this with SD now 25, since she was 7 (hot/cold behavior). I have disengaged from her 2 years ago to save my feelings, sanity and marriage. My hubby has addressed her behavior towards me over the years (in a separate room) but she is now even more disrespectful towards her dad. Like mines, your hubby is afraid to lose his son and feels like if he put his foot down your ss will stop coming around and his BM will encourage it since she doesn't want your ss to like you anyway. He feels stuck in the middle. Your SS blame you for his parents failed relationship and just merely existing. Do what I did and protect yourself and disengage from doing anything for your ss. Just be polite (hi, bye, with a smile.. not even how are you) and do your own thing when ss come over. In other words,stay out their way. Even if your hubby insists make up something that needs to be done (never say your son doesn't want me around, etc..) or make plans with girlfriends to do a girls day. I told my hubby, "you can have whatever relationship you want with your daughter but I'm done trying". He didn't like it at first and probably still doesn't but he has seen how much better our marriage has gotten because of my disengagement. I no longer ask about her or "nag" him about addressing her disrespect or rude behavior because I have mentally withdrawn from my SD. Nothing she does or say hurt/upset me. When the stepkids/adults know that they can't hurt you or get a reaction out of you anymore they realize their games (or manipulation)no longer works on you and you no longer care, they will either find a new target or take it out on the person they really have the issue with, which is their dad/mom, your spouse.
Nicola - 30-Mar-18 @ 3:59 PM
I have been with my partner for 2 years now he has a son that he has full custody over he was taken from him biological mum because of abuse, he was perfect for me he would help me clean the house we would have a laugh have fun but he would also listen to me when he would do something naughty, recently he started hitting me and disrespecting me completely we have had to uproot him alot and we have moved into my parents house moved on our own again and now at my partners parents house where the child had a massive tantrum and tried to push me down the stairs when i went to check if he had calmed down he hit and kicked me so hard in the leg it bruised and was painful for a week, i don't understand what i have done wrong my partners mother has told my partner i am horrible and nasty to the child which is very untrue i would lay my life down for him my partner wont listen too me but i can see his point because the child is only lashing out at me he is perfect for his grandparents and his dad, i have been sent away to stay with my parents for a couple days while they get the bottom of his behaviour but im worried about what the child will say about me as he has lied in the past because that is what he thought his dad wanted to hear, i just want my family back and i feel like its all in a 7 year olds hands. any advice on why he could be acting like this would be very appreciated.
xxSarahxx - 23-Mar-18 @ 10:27 AM
@JoyK thanks, sometimes it's hard to keep an objective view on the situation, especially when you are embroiled in the middle of it. Even though I have lived 12 years under the same roof as my stepson, I do not know him any better than I did then. I suppose it's like cats, some gel together well, some tolerate each other from the other side of the room, some scratch and fight. Lol.
WorriedMum - 16-Mar-18 @ 2:30 PM
Step kids They do misbehave often but I try not to take it personal. I feel they act such as they are lost somehow.They are lonely and sometimes angry even without noticing where that feeling comes from.I try to give love but when they misbehave I step aside and watch quietly. Not much I can do but wait until they get in a good mood. Stepparents may be able to have good relationship with step kids. And my case I believe I have. But I also know that I would not be their real parent no matter what. So I keep certain distance time to time and take care of myself and my feeling. Balancing these is not easy. But life is short and I rather stay positive enjoying my life.
JoyK - 16-Mar-18 @ 6:28 AM
@Marie T - you maybe need to sit down with your partner and talk to see what can be done. Perhaps your stepson feels out on a limb, not quite knowing what family he belongs to. Do you get on well with your partner's ex? She might help try to solve these behavioural problems too. It seems such a shame that you have all got on well as a family but just one member is troublesome. I have three stepssons all who act up. I feel like banging my head against a brick wall. I can only take so much.
mrsv - 13-Mar-18 @ 10:19 AM
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