How can SM be the bigger person when adlt SD tells lies about her

maggiedoFebruary 22, 2009

This is long but my question is in the last paragraph if you do not have time to read all this.

I have been a sm for almost 13 years. My sd was adopted at birth and is now 21 and will be graduating collage this year. Dh was husband number 4 and 13 yrs younger than ex-wife who is very angry and manipulating (money, etc.). That stopped after dh and I got married because he did better with the manipultion. Bm would call dh at work and start yelling. We lived 4 1/2 hrs away but would fly sd down every 3 weeks like clockwork it worked great. Bm called the night before the first visit and canceled the trip with a lame excuse so we contacted and attn and boundries were set up.

Early years with stepdaughter were fine and she liked me. I tried very hard to be a good stepmom but as my sd got older it was apparent she did not like me (more passive agressive)and was jealous of bd. I realize it was the bm doing this. Sd pulled away after legal visitation ended (she was about 13 yrs old) and only came around for xmas just long enough to get her gifts and that would be about it. When she turned 15 1/2 here she comes for her car and got it. Our company (that we worked our butts off building)was just starting to make money and here she comes$$$$$! You could tell she did not like me and would manipulate to get her way and she was excellent at it. Almost scarey!

I understand why all of this happened. Dh and I did therapy and we were told that sd was spoild and we needed to set boundries with sd! I had had enough with sd and xwife. I was done and over it! Now, Sd was coming for visits as college was coming?? Oh Daddy! Daddy! But the first time a boundry was set she was gone for 3 yrs and did not invited dh to her high school graduation (the private school we paid for of course).

She used the opportunity of dh's mother's funeral to work her way back in because her college money was running out. Now dh is trying to create a relationship with her. He sees her a few times a year for dinner or breakfast since she lives so far away. I do not want to be around her (per therapist). Birth/adopted mother is angry with father and so is sd (what's new) but now the anger is coming my way. That is fine because I am out of it now.

My new problem to this complexed issue is that sd is now cultivating relationships with other members of dh's family and is saying bad things about me and bd. What do I say to family members when they bring her up so that I do not sound awful. I want to be the bigger person here and not sound mean. Sd is very convincing (she is good) and the family is going to hear that I am the problem. It seems very hard for outsiders to understand the dynamics of stepfamily.I feel scared and do not want to go around the family now. I haven't said anything. This is the first time I have voiced it. Any suggestions?

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ask SD why she is spreading rumors and what is the reason behind it. I know it is hard to confront a person this way, but I guess you have to ask her directly. let her explain to you what excatly she does not like about you. see if she says anything.

    Bookmark   February 22, 2009 at 11:26AM
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How do you know what she is saying, if anything? She has a right to have a relationship with her father's family and you can't control what she says... but you can control what you say or do. I would not say anything negative about her. If she is brought up, simply say "oh, that's nice." or some other pleasant response that doesn't imply how you feel one way or the other. You don't have to gush that you like her or spew 'your side of the story' to anyone. If she is talking badly about you, people are smart enough to figure out through how you present yourself, whether she is being petty or that she is the one with the problem.

I would not confront her because unless you KNOW for a fact she said anything and what she said, you may end up looking like you are attacking her. Rumors are just rumors and if they are not true, then be the bigger person and let it go. But, I would not stay away from the family.

    Bookmark   February 22, 2009 at 1:07PM
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Maggie you obviously do not have any relationship with her and refuse because you honestly do not like this adult woman. Thats fine andyou are doing the right thing to keep far away from people such as her.
You Dh continues his relationship without any hindrance from you and you do not interfere with the relationship. Agian...very good.
BUt if she does go around sayng things behind your back and IF a family member approaches you and asks you this and that and you find out that she has lied and manipulated the situation then you confront this adult head on and do it in frotn of the entire family and set the record straight that you have never interfered etc..etc..and any issues she and her mother have are her own issues and to keep it to themselves because its not nice to lie to family members. You do not have contact with her and therefore anythign she does say in the near future is obviously fabricated.
I do not know details of your situation..maybe both of you went rocky when she hit her teens but it does sound that she is spoiled and the bm has anger issues that were never let for for so many years. There are some bm out there that do not get over their failed marriage and use their kids as weapons because that is the only thing they hav at their disposal. BUT she is not a child. She is an adult and if you feel she has overstepped her boundaries and find out for a fact..a fact....not just feelings...that she is badmouthing you behind her back and then you confront her and the family and set the record straight.
BUt you have ot know for a fact. You cannot go out on a whim and just assume. I know you dont like her or trust her and you sya she's manipulative but if you have nothing ot hide and have always stayed true on your road and are an honest nice person then i think family members will see through her lies and manipulations. Especially if they know you have no contact all these years.
If family members ask about her you say you don't know. You are not in contact with her and that your DH would know since he meets her for dinners...thats all. Be honest. You don thave to voice out that you do not like her or trust her.

    Bookmark   February 22, 2009 at 1:29PM
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