Stepsibling Rivalry causing us to argue
I think I may need to do more than post on a forum but I am just not sure. Let me start off with giving a short bio before jumping to the issue at hand. I have been with DH for nearly five years. We both have seven year old girls. Mine is eight months older and we now have a six month old boy. We have always had some communication problems when it comes to raising the children. I tend to be a strict parent as I feel that I can have a lot more quality time with the kids if they behave well. I now work from home so I have the children the majority of the time.
Things have gotten worse since the birth of our son. The BM also had a son on the same day. So now our SD has two baby siblings. There have been issues at school and with friends that are getting better, but DH does not believe I treat her as well as my own daughter. The other day we got in to an argument because he wanted to implement rules before going to a theme park (GREAT IDEA!) I read the rules, which were different for each girl, and they seemed good until he started going over them. His rule for my daughter was, acknowledge when you are spoken to. As he began to explain it to her he told her that she often ignores SD (her sister) when she is asking her questions or pretends she doesnÃ¯Â¿Â½t hear her and that she isnÃ¯Â¿Â½t allowed to do this anymore. Before he finished I called him in to the room to tell him that I advise her all the time to ignore her (SD) if she is becoming frustrated or annoyed and that I thought that the acknowledge the first time rule was for us. He thinks advising them to ignore each-other is unfair since my BD is much more capable of doing so. Is it wrong to have them ignore each-other? When do I alter my discipline of my child to compensate for SD? I am concerned that my BD feels resentment towards her stepsister because the only time she gets in trouble is when it relates to her stepsister.
Side note: In all fairness my BD tends to be rather aloof in general and does tend to "not hear" when she is being spoken to. On the other hand my SD tends to be rather contrary and argumentative when it comes to interactions with children in general.
My husband and I are barely speaking right now. He feels I do not treat his daughter as well as I treat my own. I understand how he can feel that way since SD does seem to need more discipline, weather it is because she is more hyper I cant be sure. In the end I try to keep the same rules for both it just seems like my SD has a harder time following them even though she has lived with mainly us for nearly five years.
Any advice you can give would be GREATLY appreciated.