Stepgrandchild problem

AnnyOctober 21, 2001

My son married a girl who has a son from a previous marriage. They just had a little boy. Her son is ten and is horrible and mean. I've been accused of playing favorites. I have five other grandchildren from my daughters. I cant show this child the attention of the others. Not only does her reject my attention, but makes fun of me behind my back and has played pranks, like calling my house and hanging up, taking food.

hes fine around his mother and my son when they are around but when their backs are turned

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Keep in mind that this poor fellow probably hasn't had it easy up to now. Whatever his birth parents situation was, she was single--so his birth dad either wasn't there in the beginning, or he was but left. Many children in his situation can have a problem or two dealing with the world. Realize that it's easier for him to act the way he does than to allow himself to care about you, develop a relationship with you only to have it yanked away from him if your son and his mother would split up in the future.

You'd be doing the fellow a favor if you sat down calmly with your son and his wife and explained all that's been happening. Tell them how concerned you are that he get the help he needs to get his emotions in order before he hits those turbulent teenage years. Offer to be there, to do what you can to help.

Keep in mind that making friends with him isn't going to happen overnight and persevere. He sounds like a child who needs you.

    Bookmark   October 22, 2001 at 4:00PM
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I agree with Xara, this child desperately needs someone, and I think he also needs to be in counseling to help him get control of himself and to deal with the problems that have made him mean.

As difficult as it is to reach out to what one sees as a bad kid, doing so will sometimes turn them around.

Several years ago there was a really bad kid in our neighborhood, adults and other children alike actually hated this boy. My first contact was when I was working in my yard, he came by started acting out rather badly, telling me I was Too old for that kind of work, etc. and should hire it done, well, I said if you finish mowing the grass I will pay you to do the work. He finished the lawn, I invited him in, gave him some cookies, ask his opinion on several things and just allowed him to talk. Over the years we have become rather good friends, he is now in his 20's, no longer lives in the neighborhood, but does still occasionally come by for a visit. He frequently says I am the only person who ever cared about him, and while I know he never allowed anyone to care, that little bit of attention I gave him seemed to help him get started on a behavior pattern that has been much better for him.

try to find out what this kid likes, encourage him to talk, ask him to help you do little things, anything that will let him know he has value and you may be surprised at the change in him.

    Bookmark   October 23, 2001 at 1:24PM
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Oh, such good advice from both posters! You say that you "can't show this child the attention of the others" but you need to do exactly that. I'm tempted to say he needs even more attention but he may interpret that as pity. Since he needs to learn that he can trust you, that might backfire. But earning the trust of this child would be so very rewarding. Good luck to you and your family.

    Bookmark   October 23, 2001 at 11:12PM
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Those that are the hardest to love are the ones who need it the most!

    Bookmark   November 11, 2001 at 4:30PM
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