HELP--step-daughter ruining our family
This is my first time joining this forum. I am at my wits end and did a search on the web trying to find some help. I am seeking a place to vent and get advice on my situation. Sorry this is so long.
My husband and I dated 2 years before getting married. We both have been divorced before and wanted to be extra careful. I have a son and he has a daughter. The four of us got along wonderfully before we got married. I would have never dreamed his daughter would be able to cause such pain and stress in our lives.
We have been married almost 5 years. After our first year of marriage we got pregnant with our son. This is when the majority of problems began. I was caught off gaurd because my step-daughter begged us to have a baby. I was so saddened that such a joyous event in our lives became tarnished by pure jealousy from his ex-wife and my step-daughter.
I should have noticed before we got married how my step-daughter was spoiled by my husband and his parents. I knew they felt sorry for her, as I did, because her mother is a drug addict and a theif. My husband had custody, but she had no visitation schedule and was able to dictate where, when, and how long she would stay at each house. Basically, if she said,"jump," my husband and his parents said,"How high?" If she didn't get what she wanted from one home, or a conflict arrised she would simply move on to the next house.
I also saw them trying to ease her pain with material things. This child wanted for nothing in this world, and had no chores or responsibilities. Everything went her way until myself, her step-brother, and her half-brother entered the picture.
When we got married she had to share her dad's attention with me and then with a new brother. This did not sit well with her. My husband and I went out of our way to make her feel comfortable, but nothing worked.
It got to the point that if my husband would do something special for me, then he would do something special for her. We would even get the same presents on Valentine's Day and other holidays. He refused to hug me, kiss me, hold my hand, or show any affection toward me when she was around.
I can't count the times she has trid to fabricate things to her dad or grandparents to try to break us up.
Currently, she has dropped out of our local highschool and is attending an alternative school 3 hours a day. She has been at the alternative school 2 years and only has 3 credits. She is suppose to be a Senior, but is currently a beginning Freshman. She now lives with her mom who allows her to skip school. Her mother is unemployed, on drugs, and stealing. She has several boyfriends that commit various crimes and have been on probation. I don't know if she is sexually active or not, but I would guess so. She has no job, but has been given a car and gas money from her grandparents. We have paid thousands of dollars in car repairs and increased car insurance because of her reckless driving.
She tells her grandparents and dad that the reason she is no longer living with us is because she does not like me. She is getting in a lot of trouble over at her moms. Her mom frequently joins them in the constant partying and has no rules. We have gotten calls at the house from other individuals saying she and her mom are vandilizing homes.
She is playing the marter now quite well. Everything with her grandparents is poor, poor Step-daughter. And the evil step-mother, me, is the one to blame. Her dad is very secretive about everything that is going on with her to me now. When she, her mother, or mother in law calls he hides and whispers. I know it is tearing him up inside to see his daughter turn out this way. It hurts so bad to watch him in such disstress.
I have honestly gotten to the point where I detest her. I do not want her or her mother around my children. I detest the fact that she and her mother have a key to our house and know the password for our alarm system. When she comes to the house I cringe. I keep a great distance from her because I am afraid of conflict. I feel like I can't be comfortable or myself in my own home.
I hate being this way. I hate feeling this way. I hate the feelings I get when she comes over. I hate that we are not one big happy family. My house is not a home because of her and I don't know what to do.
My husband and I have been through so much with her. There is a noticable distance between us that wasn't there before. He is stuck in the middle. His anger about her situation has trickled over to my son, his step-son. Prior to all of this my husband was at least friendly with my son. But now he seems to look at my son with hate in his eyes. He seems to go out of his way to find something that my son does wrong. I do not know what to do. I love my husband. We have a child together. But right now I don't see this situation ever getting any better. Any advice or suggestions?