Upsetting situation with adult stepchildren
I would like to ask for some feedback on my current situation. My partner and I have been together for two years and have been engaged for the past year. He is 51 and I am 40. I do not have any children of my own, but my fiance has four daughters aged 23 to 30 and three granddaughters. My partner has been divorced for almost 20 years, and raised the four girls on his own after his exwife chose to leave the family. As a result, my partner and his daughters have always had a very close relationship, one which I believe could be characterized as intense and almost peer-like in nature.
From the start of our relationship until about two months ago, his daughters seemed to like me and we all did things together (like camping and bar-b-qs). They had a few minor petty issues with me that they complained to their dad about � for example, after working 2 fifteen hour shifts in a row I seemed less perky at a family dinner than they would have liked and they thought I should try harder to "be a part" of them when I was around them instead of making excuses for my fatigue. They had no problem accepting the gifts and assistance in various forms that were offered by both their father and myself during this period, however. They also complained that they weren�t seeing their dad as much as they did before, even though their dad claims that he has seen more of them since I�ve been around than he did since they became adults. I feel that I�ve done as much as I could to invite them over to the house and arrange events at which we could all socialize together.
Two months ago their bio-mom�s mom told the daughters jokingly that I was "so nice" that she planned to leave her estate to me. (This grandma keeps in contact with my partner, and I�ve talked to her maybe three times in the past two years.) This situation set off a firestorm of complaints from the daughters � for example, when they came over, I was not always in the same room as them which made them uncomfortable in the house they grew up in � and they forbid either my partner or myself to have any contact with their bio-mom�s family. This situation led to so many calls from the daughters to my partner on a daily basis that my partner�s business began to suffer.
The daughters finally demanded a face to face meeting with me, which I agreed to at the start of January. At this meeting, the daughters explained to me that I wasn�t a good fit in their opinion for their family and unless I changed to meet their standards they would not accept the relationship I had with their father. I explained that while I hoped to maintain a good relationship with my partner and a civil relationship with them, I didn�t plan to take orders from them and if they wanted to improve their relationship with me they could start by treating me with respect.
The daughters responded to this meeting by telling their dad that they didn�t understand how he could love me if I didn�t love them "as a parent should". They have since cut off contact with their father, and today came by the house to pick up all of their things that we had stored here. They voluntarily turned in their house keys and explained that they were completely done with their father until he got rid of me.
My partner is obviously upset about this situation, but doesn�t want us to separate quite yet and feels that I have done nothing wrong, could not have done anything better in my relationship with them over the past two years, and am a very good fit for him. Instead, he feels we should try moving to a different house � one which his kids haven�t grown up in � and try to strengthen our relationship while rebuilding a relationship with his kids. My heart says this would be great, but my head says that this really is never going to be resolved and I am signing up for nothing but misery if I continue trying to please these adult children who don't seem to want to be pleased.
I�m so torn, and am wondering if anybody else has gone through this and could offer advice, or share any thoughts that might be helpful? Thank you in advance for your help.