My step child dosent like me. What to do?

lee_growJanuary 30, 2008

I have a step daughter who is 5 she does not like me and has not since she was 3. She comes over every weekend cause she lives with her mother. we tried many things nothing seems to be working. She glares at me, says she dont like me cause i am married to her father, dont want to listen to me,and never wants to even be in the same room as me.some times even throws a fit when we go to pick her up.,etc. her behavior causes great strain on my husbands and my relashionship. Its getting to the point where I dont want her to even come around any more. And Im worried her behavior will rub off on my 6 month old child. What should we Do ???

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amyfiddler

Whatever you do, do not try to parent the child - leave that up to dad. She is hurt and angry, because her family is unrecognizable from the nuclear family she was born into - that is scary, threatening, and confusing to a young child. Allow dad and daughter time alone, and understand that trust sometimes takes years to build -

YOu might consider family counseling - look for a trained Marriage and Family Therapist who specializes in blended families. Good luck.

    Bookmark   January 30, 2008 at 5:13PM
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imamommy

I'm curious, what have you tried?

Two years seems a long enough time for her to warm up to you. What is the relationship between the adults? Do her parent's get along? Do you get along with her mom? Does her mom dislike you for any reason? Is she upset that you have a new baby? There are so many reasons she may feel the way she does. It's hard to even guess. At such a young age, it shouldn't take too much effort to get along with her. Most kids like to play games and have fun.

I have had similar problems with my stepdaughter. She's now 8. She's never come right out and told me that her mom doesn't like me but I know because of the way her mom talks about me to DH. I had to sit down SD several times and let her know, 'I'm sorry if your mommy doesn't like me. I'd like for all of us to get along, but most important, I want you to enjoy coming to our house. I want for me and you to get along too, because I like you and I look forward to seeing you'. or something along those lines. I let her know that even if the grown ups, sometimes don't get along, that all the grown ups, including me, care very much about her and enjoy spending time with her. (she now lives here full time and there is still times when she's cold toward me, usually when she comes back from a weekend with her mom)

She usually softens up a lot when I tell her that. It all depends on why she feels that way though. If she feels that you have done something to her, find out what it is. Even if it's not true, if it's how she feels, it's true in her mind. It might also help to promote that she spend some time alone (special time) with her dad. First, she has to share daddy with you. Now she's sharing daddy with the new baby you brought into the family. It's perfectly normal, even in intact families, for older children to get jealous of a new baby. They need to know they are still loved and kids need to hear it.... often.

    Bookmark   January 30, 2008 at 7:07PM
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sugarland-girl

That is a sticky situation you have here!! I also have a step child, 9yrs old, but luckely we couldn't have a better relationship even if he was my very own. He was 2yrs old when his father and I met, so he doesn't remember a day without me in it, thankfully!

In my opinion it sounds like there are issues with your SD's mother. She must not like you and most likely says bad things about you to her child. If that's the case your hubby really needs to step up and let your SD mother know that this is not acceptable and it is only hurting their daughter and that is not fair to her. Also, how does your hubby respond to his daughter treating you poorly? Not to sound harsh or anything, but he !!!!CANNOT!!!! allow his daoughter to treat you badly and disrespect you! He needs to let her know that he loves you and you're not going away and she is NOT allowed to treat you in that manner. She needs to know that he loves her sooo much and you are not going to replace her but her bahavior is not acceptable and will not be tolerated anymore. My SS will sometimes (very rare!!) argue or try to get away with more when he's with me, which is normal with it being your natural child or step, but his father nips that right in the butt before it becomes a habit. He lets him know that he loves me and he will not allow him to treat his wife bad or disrespect his wife for any reason!!

imamommy is right that it helps to let the child now that you love them and you want only the best for them. Even if there is a stain between the parents, it has nothing to do with her and doesn't change the fact that she is loved by her father and you. Are the two of you ever affectionate towards eachother? (you and SD) Do the two of you ever spend time together alone doing girly things? (painting her nails, curling her hair, putting on perfume and make-up) Get her a surprize for no reason? My SS and I have always spent alot of time together just the two of us and it has always been a thing that has always strengthend our bond. Maybe make a special dinner for her, her favorite foods, or take her to lunch to her favorite place. My SS and I always have a great time going out and buying his daddy a specail gift together. Or getting a new toy or game and playing with it together or as a familiy.

If she is having behavior issues, not listening to you, giving mean looks and refusing to be in the same room as you, there is obviously a lack of consistancy in disapline. You have to let children know what the rules of the house are, before you begin enforcing them though, and what the consciences are if they break the rules. And be consistant!! No matter what, even if it's their birthday!! Things should not be going on this long or be where they at today between the two of you. Your hubby needs to get a hold on this behavior before she gets any older and begins to apply her incompliance to everyone in her life. By that time the behavior is almost impossible to reverse or mend and now you have a wild teenage girl running around making everyones life miserable!!

    Bookmark   January 31, 2008 at 12:35AM
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imamommy

Sugarland-girl, I agree and the only thing I might offer in addition, is a bit of caution in doing those 'girly' things if mom is saying bad things about her. Those activities are great for female bonding but in my situation, when I do those things or spend fun time with my step daughter, her mom gets very irate and has a fit. DH gets a phone call that I am not her mom and shouldn't be doing those things with her. (of course in our situation, BM is uncooperative with DH most of the time, except when she wants something)

    Bookmark   January 31, 2008 at 1:40AM
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sugarland-girl

Isn't it amazing just how insecure a bio parent can become when someone else is in the picture?! Do they really believe that this new person is going to swoop in and toss them into the trash like last weeks newspaper? I understand their concerned about their child being treated poorly or neglected now that this new person is in the picture. But having a step parent, a good step parent, is an awsome thing! That child is loved and taken care of by twice as many people as the typical "nuculear" family. Not that there is anything wrong with a nuculear family, just to clear that up! But too many people seem to relate a step parent with a nitemare. A child with step families have double everything christmas gifts, b-day parties, cloths, bedrooms, game systems, toys ect. (the list could go on and on!!!) Parents/children need to give up the stigma and be thankful there are now more people on the team wanting only the best for them. They need to remember the love between a child and bio parent is truely unconditional! Unfortunately, the love between a child and step parent isn't!! One little slip up on the part of the step parent, that child may not trust them anymore, hate em and resent em for the rest of their lives just because we're not their mother! The bond between the steps require constant work to maintain and strengthen it. So it's unfortunate when the bio parent, who usually has the best interest of the child, discourages the child to liking/loving their step parent because of silly issues and insecurities within there self!! Sadly, sometimes it's the parents that need grow up!!!

    Bookmark   January 31, 2008 at 3:25AM
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imamommy

sugarland, can I ask why you don't go to the stepfamily forum? It sure could use your outlook!!!

    Bookmark   January 31, 2008 at 3:24PM
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sugarland-girl

imamommy, In the past I have checked out the step forum, but it felt really negative. There didn't seem to be many people who liked their step children and they appeared to regret getting married all together. It's hard to relate to that because I'm in love with my hubby and his son. Maybe I should give it a second shot though!

    Bookmark   January 31, 2008 at 4:46PM
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imamommy

There are a couple or few sour grapes over there that give us a hard time but the ones that hate their SK don't stay too long. Once they hear the rest of us say, 'then you shouldn't have married him', they leave. It's the bio moms that aren't remarried or have experience with step children that are the ones that bring some negativity to it and there's a few new people there too. I think it's a good mixture of society.

    Bookmark   January 31, 2008 at 5:03PM
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gincourt

She is probably learning most of this behavior from her mother. You need to be the good guy,Be sure to put her first, spoil her a little bit. Do some research and find out what her favorite things are. Show her a lot of attention. Make sure she knows that you are always on her side no matter what she does. You can always buy her affection to start off with, be the yes man in her life. Definetly include her in helping you with the new baby, she is probably jealous and afraid her Dad will love you and the baby more than her, HE needs to tell her over and over again that he loves her just as much if not more because she IS his first Daddy's little girl. Be patient, it may take years for her to come to terms with the new you and the new baby. And remember she is just a little bity girl too.

    Bookmark   February 9, 2008 at 6:45PM
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sjdd1984

i have two step children 13 and 8. the 8yr is my best friend and we get along great. 3 yrs ago thier mother abandoned them and told them she doesnt want to have anything to do with them. The oldest has never like me. He does things to purposly upsett me. He constenly steals food while everyone is sleeping or while i am out. he does things and acts out all the time. they have been living with me full time for over 3 years now and i am at the end of my rope. and on top of that his mother has trend to start talking to him and has told him that me and his father have kept her from seeing him and that we are stealing all her money(court ordered child support) and she misses him so much. In the last 3 years she hasnt tried to contact them once. And when she gave tem to us she called on my birthday and said i have a new apartment may 1st you com get your kids in 1 week or they go into a foster home. i was pregant at the time i had to have my baby 2 days later at 7 1/2 months because my blood pressure was 210/120. somebody please give me so advice so i can keep the hair i have left

    Bookmark   May 28, 2008 at 10:05AM
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sirens

Sjdd1884, I would protect the kids from their "mother," if at all possible. Her lying to them about you and your husband is emotionally abusive, and should be stopped.
Do whatever you can to prevent her from being able to lie to the kids....
I would just try to remember, as best you can, that these kids have basically been abandoned by their own "mother."
I hope they are getting some kind of counselling.
Perhaps family therapy is an option, I hope. They're going to need it.
You must be a good woman. I hope everything works out for you and the kids.

    Bookmark   May 29, 2008 at 9:33PM
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