And the truth comes out..

myfampgNovember 8, 2011

So Dd has been with dad since Thursday afterschool. I saw for a few minutes on Friday while I was working in the office and she was passing by going to lunch. Remember the clothes situation I had mentioned a while back? I send clothes for her to wear on Monday and they were keeping Thursday's clothes? Normally on Fridays she wears their clothes because she is going back to their house Friday afterschool. So I stopped packing clothes and all of a sudden, they send back all of her clothes and tell DD that she needs to pack her bag for Monday or she'll have to wear Thursday's clothes again.

Well I packed her a shirt for Monday but decided she could just wear the same jeans from Thursday on Monday. She wore them on Thursday, Friday and Monday AND they didn't send back the shirt from Thursday. But they don't wash the shirt... They'll just 'hang on to it' and then send it back dirty three weeks later waded up in her back. Have I mentioned I hate them?

Well tonight Dd told me, I wish I could have my daddy back. You know, the one that was married to you and loved us and was always happy?

And I pause.... Dh pauses.....

And then Dd says, well I don't want you to ever divorce stepdad but I just wish my Dad was the same guy he used to be. Now he is just weird and he's always mean and in a bad mood.

Then she tells me that she thinks stepmom's exhusband (stepsister's dad) is the perfect parent. I said 'there is no such thing as the perfect parent we all make mistakes'. She said but he is so cool. And he's really nice to me and I wish that his girlfriend was MY stepmom because she is really nice too.

For those that don't know, my daughter goes to her dad's eow Thursday to Monday and on sat and sun she goes with her stepsister to her Dad's house. At first it bothered me but then I realized that she gets more attention and love from this man and his gf than she does from dad and stepmom so it doesn't bother me as much as it used to. I'm still documenting it and plan to use it in court but I do know that he is good to my Dd I just don't think she should be spending her time with her dad with someone else's dad. If that makes sense.

I asked Dd why she thinks he is perfect and she said because he is just cool. He plays games with us and he reads to us. He is never mean and his rules are not crazy. I don't have to call him DAD or his GF MOM I just call them by their first names. She told me, if GF made stepsister call her MOM, Sm would flip out'. Double standard much? Why is it demanded for my Dd to call SM MOM but if her own daughter was calling her sm MOM she would flip out?

So I think the truth came out tonight. Part of Dd wishes that Dad and I were still married. It must be really hard for her to comprehend all the divorce and remarriage. I've never thought of how it feels for her for her parents not to be together. She has always seemed well adjusted. We divorced when she was 4 and she doesnt have many memories of us being together. She remembers our house but she doesn't remember that I ever lived there. Is this normal? I could see a really young kid feeling this way or a kid that remembers their parents being married. But all of a sudden after all these years?

Also, I have a parent teache conference tomorrow. Apparently Dd is getting into some trouble at school and is not passing two classes. This is really weird. She has never been a problem in class and she has had her folder signed so much recently for behavior reasons that she has a B in conduct. As far as her grades, two teachers said it's because she isn't paying attention in class. She is either playing with her pencil, worrying about her neighbor or being chatty. Wow!! And it's her two favorite subjects. I'm wondering if this is her way of getting attention. I'm pretty disappointed but I don't really know how to handle it. Honestly I'm getting to the point where I think she is starting to manipulate me. I think she believes that if she cries and says how awful life is for her at dad's that I'm going to say 'oh poor Dd I'm so sorry your life is so rough let's try better and let's go have an ice crEam..'.

Know what I mean?

So any suggestions on how to handle this would be great.

This is one of those situations where it would just be best for dad to disappear because the situation has become so caotic that either way, the result is the same. She is yearning for her dad and he is right in front of her. If he wasn't, she would still be yearning for him.

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--" I wish I could have my daddy back. You know, the one that was married to you and loved us and was always happy?"--

I'd not be too quick to automatically think this statement means Little MyFam wishes YOU and EX were still married. To me this sounds more like she wishes her father was a different man than the one he has turned out to be now. She had a 'nice' dad when he was married to her mom and she had a 'nice' enough dad when she only had to see him one on one during the period SM was banned. But now she has a neglectful jerk and a nasty SM. More a 'she does not like who her father has allowed himself to become' along with a 'and why the heck did I get stuck with that beast that thinks I must call her MOM'.

Talk to her teacher. Listen to what they have to say/think about DD's behavior at school. If they have any clues where it is suddenly coming from. The latest round of games Ex/SM have played these last few months may be beginning to take a toll on her. Going to school in dirty clothing, not being able to wash her hair and properly bathe, calling a tormentor MOM, spending her weekend getting few glimps of who use to be a 'nice' dad being a jerk and/or allowing the undeserved treatment the mental game playing witch does.

I'd also not necessarily think too fast that she is trying to manipulate YOU. It could be she is merely reaching out and seeking reassurance that somebody loves her. Somebody cares about what she is going through.

Bring this all up with your therapy to get their 'take' on what you have to say and what they think about your opinion of what is going on.

Yes, some kids wish their parents were still married. Some kids manipulate blah blah...but I['m not certain that is what YOUR daughter is doing here in her case. Actually so far all 'I' got out of your posting was Little MyFam wishes the family she had to go off to EOW was this other man and his GF. I didn't read anywhere that she does not like the mother and SF she does have or that she wishes her mother would marry Ex again...what I 'got' was that she is extremely unhappy with who her father is, his treatment of her and the treatment he allows Sm to dish out to her. I 'got' she's unhappy with her father and if she could pick a new father it would not be the one she has or that she would wave her magic wand and make the one she's stuck with be more like the guy she claims is 'perfect'.

    Bookmark   November 8, 2011 at 7:34AM
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Myfampg, I think it's going around. SS's confrence was about his being too social and his grades are suffering because of it. He got a c.... in our home c's are not acceptable. (Only because we know all the kids are capable of so much more, they've all proved it) He got a good talking to about this.... dh had asked bm to talk to him about it as well.... BUT when he emailed her about the parent/teacher confrence she never responded to him.... and NEVER called ss about it. The first we've heard from her is these stupid packages she sent (read my thread).... great way to tell your son a c is ok.

As far as her and her dad go.... are you writing this down? You need to. I'm sure you are though. Listen to her and let her say everything she wants to, maybe suggest she try to speak to her dad in private. I don't know, your situation is so hard because this sm is so psychotic and you never know if you can actually speak to bd. Is there anyway you could call and nicely try to speak to him while he's at work?

It's so sad that she knows her dad was different before. Maybe this is a sign he'll eventually leave psycho.

IDK... I'll think somemore and maybe I'll have some useful advice.

    Bookmark   November 8, 2011 at 7:40AM
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Myfampg -

I would actually feel relieved that DD gets some positive attention from her SS's dad. I'm glad you realize it's a good thing she goes over there, I think so too.

Sometimes my D6 says to me that she wishes me and her dad could be family again. I think it is normal for kids whose parents have divorced when they were very young to want their parents back together again. They are too little to remember all the fights and bad times.

My D13 have a different perspective because she remembers how bad it was and she does not want me and her dad to get back together. My D6 is her daddy's favorite and all she knows is that we don't live together anymore. She doesn't understand we're divorced and why we don't live together anymore. She told me since daddy isn't living with us then he isn't her dad anymore. I had to explain to her that he's still her daddy and still loves her even if he doesn't live with her. My exBF's son says he wants his mom and dad to be together. Again in their situation they spilt up when he was a baby so he doesn't remember the bad times either.

I think it is very normal for a child, especially a young one to want their parents back together because they don't remember any of the bad things, they just want to be a "normal" family with a mommy and a daddy.

As far as the school issues, I'd give DD some time to bring the grades up but if she continues maybe you'd want to consider some sort of punishment. Maybe she wants attention, maybe she's getting a little lax, and yeah, she's having a tough time at her dad and SM, but that doesn't give her a free pass with her school work. Hopefully you and her teachers can come up with some ideas to help her get back on track. And maybe she would benefit from some therapy as well.

Hang in there girl.

    Bookmark   November 8, 2011 at 11:18AM
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I can tell you that even as an adult child of divorce who understands that her parents have been divorced for 25 years and would never be back together, there is something very validating somehow about seeing them together or imagining them getting along. It is a little hard to explain and defies logic.

One time, when I was about 12 and my brother was about 9 (our parents' divorce had been final probably more than 3 years by then), my dad took us skiing near where my mom lived. There was a bad storm and by the time we arrived at our mom's house, we all, including my dad, ended up snowed in.

My mom cooked dinner and the four of us sat around the table. Both my mom and my dad were involved in other relationships at the time, and my brother and I knew somehow that they weren't getting back together, but I tell you we could hardly stop falling all over ourselves to have attention from both of them simultaneously. That night my dad slept in my brother's room (he had captain's beds at the time) and in the morning hit the road to his house 3 hours away. But that night it was like magic, I just didn't want to go to sleep.

Looking back I am sure it was super awkward for them. But I was unaware of it - all I knew was that I had these two people I loved in the same place at the same time. It was almost as though everything was somehow better with me, even though normally everything was fine with me anyway and I had no anger or trauma about their divorce.

I know this is much different than your situation. My point is that I just wanted to tell you I think sometimes it is something in the child, something that validates us as people to see or imagine some evidence that was the genesis of your own existence. My SM, over the years, has been good enough to take some snapshots of the four of us here and there and those matter tremendously to me.

    Bookmark   November 8, 2011 at 9:02PM
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"I'm wondering if this is her way of getting attention. I'm pretty disappointed but I don't really know how to handle it. Honestly I'm getting to the point where I think she is starting to manipulate me. I think she believes that if she cries and says how awful life is for her at dad's that I'm going to say 'oh poor Dd I'm so sorry your life is so rough let's try better and let's go have an ice crEam..'."

Oh, myfam, hugs. I know this one. We've been going through this with SS for (literally) years now. We were never quite sure from one incident to the next if it was a reaction to the absolute vile stupidity perpetrated by BM, manipulation on the part of SS, something else entirely, some combination of all of the above (my guess).... Finally we decided it just doesn't matter what the root cause is - because we cannot change it. SS has been in counseling for years, as I believe your DD is as well, we're always documenting/accumulating more evidence for the next round of court, as you are - but for now, the situation is what it is.

So, that's what we've been doing. Here are the standards and expectations, period. Yes, my SS and your DD got a bad draw in the "parent" hand dealt to them, and while we can sympathize (and silently rage), it is not and cannot be a "get out of jail free" card which allows them to feel that they are a "victim" and exempt from normal expectations. These kids have been going through this for years and unfortunately it does not appear to be going to change anytime soon - so life will have to proceed as if it were normal.

I think it's helpful this way too because it helps us remain more calm and structured - no guessing if it's manipulation or anger, no wondering if we're being played either intentionally or subconsciously. It doesn't matter - here's what needs to be done. Here are your responsibilities. I am sorry you are feeling badly and we can talk about that after responsibilities are taken care of.

I think of it sort of as if we're all living in a war zone. Sure, in the beginning of it everything is panicky and scattered, but at some point you realize it's not going to change anytime soon, meals still have to be made, cleaning done - and kids educated and raised, no matter what is going on externally.

Does that make sense?

    Bookmark   November 10, 2011 at 10:48AM
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Thank you ALL sorry it's taken me a week to come back. Between the emergency dental appointment for my 4 year olds FRONT tooth being knocked with a baseball by Daddy(!!) and homework a college kid isn't even doing, a boss with a broom stick up her you know what and Dd and her whining about her miserable life, I've literally no time to comment on my own thread!!

So... Mattie: I think you make an excellent point. I have to stop allowing her to use this an excuse. She will go thru life thinking she can whine and make excuses for everything and then when someone finally days NO MORE she is going to be in for a huge surprise.

My job as her mother is to teach her to be a responsible human-being and to take responsibility for her life. I fail if she keeps on like this. Unfortunately for her she has had some soft teachers the last couple of years and this year, she has three bears that aren't letting anything get past them.

So I had my conference with her homeroom teacher. She said that Dd is a very sweet girl and has a huge heart but is distracted easily, doesn't stay focused on the subject if others are talking, is very slow to complete her work and often does not complete her homework (wtf!?) and might be following the wrong group of girls. She said Dd is a follower, seems to have low self esteem, although she was very quiet the first couple of weeks of school, she has become quite chatty lately and has been moved more than once during class. I was shocked. Dd was sitting next to me and just put her head down. I wanted to beat her... Somewhat joking but literally Dd what in the world!? Ya know?

So the teacher said Dd needs to focus on her work. She said she is slow because she is gifted. She is in the g/t program and one of the characteristics of a child with gifted talents is their OCD type of nature concerning school work. They can't ever get it perfect. So they erase and erase and start over and start over again. Her teacher said this isn't really an issue, but it might be in jr high. She is working on this with Dd during some extra study time instead of allowing recess. So I was expecting the homework thing to be dad's fault, right? Well.. It's equal. She isn't doing homework At my house either!! She says 'but I forget!!' ok not acceptable.

So for the last week, every day, Dd do you have home work? Yes or no - no issues. But then tonight... At 1030 she flips out of bed runs in and remembers she has math homework!! Omg!!! I am furious!! So she got up and completed it in about 20 minutes. I told her though, if this happens one more time, no more dance. Dance is over if she can't take care of school. She then had the gaul to ask me if I would give her $30 to buy a diary and a bendy pen from the damn book fair! NO!! I just spent $400 TODAY to pay for recital and costume fees for dance.. NO! And because I've had to use dance as a threat (and I will stick to it I threatened my Dh if I didn't stick to it to make me sleep on the couch for a week!) if I have to take her out, I lose $400!! Plus I will still have to pay monthly tuition so she WILL be paying me back. There are no child labor law's in this house!!

And you know what -- even through all of this frustration, the one thing that makes me angry is that she calls SM MOM!! It makes me so mad because I am starting to believe that she is not so scared of sm. Now don't get me wrong, SM is crazy and is doing crazy things to try to make me go crazy, but I might be wrong... But have you ever known a 10 yr old with the sass that mine has to NOT throw attitude at a stepmom? I did! All of you that have stepdaughter's get it... Maybe she doesn't do it because she LIKES her! No way would I call another woman mom! Ever! And I was an abused stepdaughter!! Physically and mentally! I just don't know.

I'm lost and rambling here but more than that I'm angry!

Oh and I forgot to mention that Dd FORGED my initials on her reading log last week but then confessed before getting caught! She came straight to me and told me she did it but erased it and took the zero.... She didn't tell her teacher that she forged it, she just erased it. But I found where she was practicing. Omg this was me at 17 not 10!!

I don't know what to do. She is so sweet and so loving but is she blowing smoke to manipulate me or is she just being a preteen?? I have never had any of these issues... And I am feeling like a failure here.

    Bookmark   November 15, 2011 at 12:39AM
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"Now don't get me wrong, SM is crazy and is doing crazy things to try to make me go crazy, but I might be wrong... But have you ever known a 10 yr old with the sass that mine has to NOT throw attitude at a stepmom? I did! All of you that have stepdaughter's get it... Maybe she doesn't do it because she LIKES her!"

Oh myfampg, big (((HUGS)))

I think it is actually BECAUSE your DD loves and feels totally SAFE with you that YOU get the attitude. She is too afraid of and emotionally battered by SM to stand up to her.


    Bookmark   November 15, 2011 at 3:13PM
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It was 5th grade when 'social life' became a pain in the rear around here. Such drama. Day after day I heard all about who said what, who did what, and who did not do something they were suppose to. Oh, and so and so is 'dating' (?? ;-P bwahaha, they don't 'date', just talk to each other on playground) such and such. It was the year 'social life' really began to pick up, take center place in my DD's mind and made me think 'its going to be a loooong next 7 to 8 years'.

Recess provided 15 minutes of pure social drama. Enough to carry into the next class and gossip while teacher tried to droan on about math, science whatever. Yep, it was the year little girls too big for their britches got sent to see the principal...silly girls thought 'go to the office' was something only little boys ever heard teachers say. no, mine has yet to be sent to the office and she's in 6th grade, but I did hear at P/T conference that mine has been told to 'stop talking' a few times this year.

You could look on the bright side. You were just worrying about Little MyFam not being social and not having friends. Well, you know now she is social enough and has enough friends to get in trouble in the classroom for jaw jacking instead of listening! LOL.

Just keep an eye on things. Sit on her about the homework. For DD fifth grade was also the year the teachers started handing out assignments that were not due for several days. DD would try and put off that was not due next day, afterall...and then suddenly forget about it or come the actual night before the delayed work was due ended up with tons due to putting off what had not yet been due. Teacher also started treating them a bit different and trying to get them ready for middle school by giving verbal rather than written assignments. That also made it harder to remember assignments. Of course worrying about social life on top of it all made remembering and doing even more difficult.

    Bookmark   November 15, 2011 at 4:00PM
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Thanks Love - man last night was emotional. Mimosa anyone??

JMT- what did you do about the homework thing? Did you let her do it late at night or did she suffer the consequences of forgetting?

I've always 'picked up' the pieces and I think it's time to let her fall. Have a little embarrassment. But it's very painful.(for me) I still constantly ask her about hw as soon as she is home or in the car. I ask every day, what was the best part of today? What is something cool you learned? What is something you learned that you didn't care about or understand (this actually helps rEview those subjects she ignored). I even ask her about the social things so I 'know' what's going on with who.

I was worried about her socially and I am still worried bc I don't think she has enough confidence to try to run with the girls that I would prefer -- but is comfortable being around the girls that make me cringe with their purple eye liner and mascara and their hooker hair styles... Not kidding. This one girl that she talks about a lot, was standing in front of me when I snapped a random picture of the kids at a fundraiser a few weeks ago. I got home, loaded them up and was watching the slide show when all of a sudden this 10/11 yr old's butt cheek is peeking out of her hoochie momma shorts... She isn't a small petite girl either... Her shorts were skin tight like dance shorts and maybe a size too small and she's flashing me (on accident) WHY would a mom let her kid out of the house that way? I said something out loud to that effect and Dd responded 'because her mom dresses that way'. Although humorous and a teaching tool... Not the BFF I had in mind for my Dd.

I'm trying to keep Dd as 'young' as possible but also want her to 'mature' emotionally just not sexually. She isn't boy crazy and doesn't talk about boys at all like that -- we don't tease her about 'having a boyfriend or a crush'. I intervened quickly with the Justin Bieber infatuation and moved on to something more family friendly. I started sensoring the shows and music. I've been researching all of my concerns and reading and maybe I'm being a bit hypersensitive -- this is actually ONE topic SM and I agree on believe it or not so I don't have to worry about her going their and getting to unwind everything I've 'changed'. I am just really worried about having an out of control 12/13 yr old ... I'd like to put it off a few years.

Back to school work, I don't want Dd to fail but should I let her, to get a taste of it?? She didn't make A honor roll for the first time but she doesn't know it yet. I'm not mad. A B is great. It's not failing but I think she will be disappointed in herself-- we shall see?

How do I get her to FOCUS at school on what is important??

    Bookmark   November 15, 2011 at 8:14PM
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What Little JMT and Little MyFam have going on in the classroom are not coming from the same places so I don't know what to tell you might work for you.

My DD is ADHD. This this her first school year she is 'going it on her own'...she's totally med free. We're on trial basis and she's doing very well. She always makes the honor roll, but this 1st quarter of 6th grade she did it going on self discipline and a determination to prove she is ready to go it on her own. I'm major proud of her. She has always done homework med free so knowing and retaining the lessons was never a problem, but focusing in the classroom with all the distractions blah blah was the test.

She's having to train herself to tune out the classroom crap during lessons and study time, and be able to tune it back in when it's time she has school chances to socialize. She's balancing the two and making it happen.

At P/T conference, teacher said she wished all her students took DD's attitude towards classwork and homework. DD is one of her few students who is always prepared for class, always has her homemwork completed and is very eager to sponge up everything the teacher is saying and assigning. The only issue DD has is quiet classroom reading time. She was given two choices to overcome this 1) she has teacher permission to just get up and move herself when the kids around her are doing everything BUT reading (whispering, teasing each other blah blah) or 2) she could bring her earplugs.

DD was horrified at the thought of bringing earplugs to read at school (yeah that would give the other kids something to point and laugh about) so she has had to demand of herself that she try harder to focus on the book and not the distraction. Her motivation has been the challenge that she CAN do this, she will do this. The reading quietly in class has gotten easier as the year goes forth.

No, DD is not into boys yet. She likes hearing all the gossip and wants to know all that is going on, but for her, she still thinks the guys in her grade are idiots who pick their noses and don't even bother to wash their hands. She actually gets a giggle out of the thought so and so thinks x is cool when in reality x sits in class in front of DD and she knows x is a disgusting little creature with a mustard blob on his tee from lunch. She does not yet find x anything to swoon over.

    Bookmark   November 16, 2011 at 7:20AM
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Myfampg - you are NOT a failure!
Stop that right now!

Your daughter is just getting a little distracted. It is up to you to put her back on track.

Take my daughter for example. She is supposed to do the breakfast dishes before she goes to school. We eat breakfast at 7:10 and she doesn-t have to catch the bus until 8:10- Plenty of time to do them, right? Well, she's been slacking off. I'll come home from work and the breakfast dishes aren't done, the table hasn't even been cleared off. So I took her cell phone for a couple of days.
Don't ya know now when I come home from work now the table is cleared off, dishes done and everything is lovely!

You just have to give her an appropriate punishment to put her back on track. If it's no dance for a couple of weeks, so be it. But do NOT feel bad! You are teaching her that actions have consequences. I don't think she is doing it to aggravate you so much as she's getting distracted by her friends at school and is slacking a little bit.

And try not let the fact that she calls her SM mom get to you. Didn't the SM insist she do that? It's not like it's something she came up with.

    Bookmark   November 16, 2011 at 8:57AM
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Yes amber sm refuses to respond to any other name but MOM. I do not think she would have come up with it on her own. Thanks for the advice. I'm taking it all in I promise!

    Bookmark   November 16, 2011 at 3:37PM
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I'm even more concerned about my daughter --

She came home on Monday. I picked up from school and we planned a little dinner with my parents, grandma, sister and nephew since she is spending thanksgiving with her dad. She was fine until about 1/2 way thru dinner and she became very demanding. 'I want to play on your phone'. No phones at the table. 'not fair!! You're mean you never let me do anything!!' and then she pouted the rest of dinner. Literally threw a temper tantrum.

Then, once we were home, she had straightened up a bit and Dh said she could play on his phone for 15 minutes until bath time.
I got ds in the bath and then said, ok dd, it�s time for you to get in the shower and then I want us to read together. "NO!"
So dh walked over to talk to her about it.. and try to see what was going on with her and when he walked up she kicked him in the "you know what".
So he grabbed the phone from her and she started screaming!! I was like WTF?? what is going on!!?
Dh said, she just kicked me.. and then DD screams and he punched me in the stomach!!
� I was like WHAT?? And dh said, I did not punch her in the stomach, I grabbed the phone from her because she kicked me..
He walked off and she continued to cry and say how her stomach was hurting and she was going to throw up and he punched her blah blah.
� I felt so pulled.. what do I do?? I told her to go get in the shower.. she went..
Crying!! And then I talked to dh while she couldn�t hear me.. I said what happened?
he said I don�t know..
I went over and I was going to sit next to her and find out what was wrong with her, why she was screaming at you and just talk with her about what was going on�
And watch her play the game she was playing and as soon as I walked up in front of her she kicked me in the "you know what"..
I said OMG.. wow..
He said, I know, she has never done anything like that before..
Again, my reaction was "WOW, I don�t know what to say, so not like her"
He said well I haven�t had a chance to tell you but when I got home today, I went in to say hello to her (she was in his office, doing her homework at his desk) and he said I just bent down to kiss her on the head and she reached up and slapped my face.. but then ds came in and I got busy with him and I forgot to tell you.
I said WHAT? She slapped your face? Were you tickling her or annoying her.. he said NO I just said hey dd, how was your day and went to kiss her on the top of the head like I always do and she turned around and slapped me..
And then went back to doing her work�
But before he could even say anything to her ds had come in "DADDDYYY!!!"
� I said, ok something is not right.. something is going on..
He agreed.
� So when she got out of the shower, she got dressed and apparently went in to her closet and hid behind all of her stuffed animals so I couldn�t find her.
Finally after searching the entire house, ds found her in her closet.. she was MAD at ds for rating out where she was..
I left her alone for a little while to get ds in bed. Then I realized that her journal was sitting open on the counter and it said:
MOMMA READ THIS: Dear Diary, I don�t know why I act the way I do, it�s like I am happy and then I�m not. I am having a problem with my Gemini sign.. and I can�t get it figured out. It won�t let me ever be happy all the time, sometimes I am happy but other times when I should be happy, I am mad. I ruined my special thanksgiving with my family tonight and I don�t know why I act the way I did. I hope that my family will forgive me and understand that my feelings have a mind of their own and they do whatever they want, no matter what I want them to do.
MOMMA: I love you and I�m sorry for being mean to you, please tell daddy (DH) that I am sorry for kicking him and that I don�t know what happened, it�s just my Gemini and it made me do that. love littlemyfam.
� Of course this letter made me cry.. once I was able to get my composure, I went in and sat on her bed and talked to her through her closet door.
I wanted to know more about this Gemini thing (and I hope I don�t offend anyone that may believe in astrology, I do not believe that our signs are our destiny..)
She said that SM read their signs to them off the internet and that Gemini have a hard time being happy all the time.. that is why she is moody and can�t be happy, but is sometimes mad or sad. And she can�t control it, it is how she is.. I felt furious with SM for putting that in her head. 1. It gives her the impression that there is an excusable reason for acting out 2. It makes dd think that she can�t control herself because she is "destined" to be moody.. I explained to her that I don�t believe in the signs.. they are fun to read and to see what your horoscope says but 1. I have never gotten rich or found love off of a promise from the horoscope in the paper 2. I control my destiny and my mood 3. I prefer to rely on facts and history and science when deciding what to believe and what not to believe.. but that is just my opinion.. I also said that SM probably didn�t mean that it was OK to act that way, she was probably just reading to dd what it said.. which is supposed to be for fun, not real facts to live by.. however I know there are people that do live by the stars and the position of the planets.. I chose not to raise my daughter to rely on that for life�s happiness..
ANYWAY~ I asked her what her issue with DH was.. and she said that she just wants to be left alone by him.. I said WHY? What has he done to you?
She said "nothing"
I said well it is very hurtful for you to push him away.. he is good to you and loves you and has missed you this weekend..
This dinner was his idea and he made it happen by inviting your family to come see you.
He also made it happen by saving the money for the expensive restaurant we ate at.. which was YOUR choice.. and so you need to not be so ugly and hateful towards him.
� She said "I know"
� Everything seemed to be ok, she went to sleep and woke up in a great mood.. was happy and continued to apologize for the night before. Hugged dh and told him she was sorry..
Sent her off to school and told her that I was going to eat lunch with her and I would see her then.
� So I went to school with my mom for lunch.
She was mostly quiet, didn�t say much. we had to basically pull things out of her.. like what are you doing today, what are your plans for thanksgiving, who is that?, where are your friends, what is your favorite subject..
And then once lunch was over, she didn�t want to go out to recess.. she hates recess anyway but she has to go..
I said go out there and find your friend A. she said no, I don�t want to.. she was super sad looking but I figured it was because we were leaving and she won�t see me until Sunday since she was going to her dad�s that day after school and spending the holiday week with him, coming home on Sunday.
Then she started asking me about what time she was coming home, what day, does dad know the rules? Does he know that he has to bring me to your house and not to the school?
I told her yes, he knows what I know.. we have the same schedule and he knows he is bringing you home at 6 on Sunday.
I said, if you want to stay until Monday morning and have them drop you at school, I can call and offer that to him.. she said, no I want to come home on Sunday.
� So I again tell her to go out and find her friend A.. (her best friend for the last two school years) she said no, I don�t want to find her, she is not being nice to me. I said what??
She said I don�t know why.. it�s like when I say, let�s go do this, A runs off and laughs.. and she won�t sit with me or talk to me.
I said ok, well go find your friend B. no, because she plays with C and I don�t like C because C is mean to D. Dd you can�t not be friend with C because she is mean to D. that has nothing to do with you and you need to just let that be between C and D. Ok. well how about you go find D and play with D. no she isn�t here today. Ok well go find SOMEONE .. no, I just want to be alone, she puts her hoodie over her head and walks away slowly with her head down. I follow her and tell her WAIT, give me a hug, I love you, happy thanksgiving, call me if you can! I hope you have a great time with your family!! Big smiles, big hugs.. all of that.. dd with her head down says, I can�t call you when I am at my dad�s I already know I can�t so stop asking me to call you.
OK, I won�t bring it up again.
She hugs grandma and then slowly walks out to the playground, hoodie over her head, head down..
A girl runs up to her and walks with her for like 2 seconds and dd never even looks at her, then the girl runs off.
Then A and about 5 other girls run up towards DD and they surround her.. my heart is pounding because I feel like I am about to watch my little girl get pounced.. A looks like she is in Dd�s face and saying something and dd is just looking down, hoodie over her head, not even responding.
I started to go out there and my mom says "no, let her handle it she needs to learn to deal with her friends and to stand up for herself."
But then the girls run off and huddle in a circle.. and then they run back to dd.. again, same reaction, dd does nothing so I go out there.. walk all the way across the field to dd but by the time I got close enough, dd is walking with the girls and then they start running and playing.. dd is running and playing, but her head is still down and she just has no emotion.
Not laughing, not smiling, nothing.
So then.. I ask one of the girls, what is going on with littlemyfam.. and the girl said "I don�t know, she is so sad lately.. and she won�t play with us, so we thought she was mad at us.. but she says she isn�t mad but she isn�t happy either, she is just SO sad all day"
I said really? Even in class.. and the girl said yes but I don�t think she is mad at anyone, I think she just wants to be alone all the time.. A thought she was mad at her so she was talking about littlemyfam but not in a bad way.. she was just asking the other girls if they knew why littlemyfam was mad at her.. So I said I would ask her.. littlemyfam said "I�m not mad at A, I think A is mad at me.. because she doesn�t want to play with me".. so I told A that littlemyfam wasn�t mad.. and now they are ok, but littlemyfam is still very sad, she keeps pushing A away and doesn�t want to be around anyone".
� SO.. I have confirmation from a 10 year old that dd is "very sad at school", her grades have drastically dropped, she is lashing out at me, her brother and my husband in a way she never has before.. so what is it?? and what do I do?
I am HIGHLY considering contacting the therapist and getting her back in after thanksgiving. She hasn�t been going because she was doing well.
She did tell me that this past weekend, she spent the night with SM�s exdh and her stepsister. He is moving in a woman that he met online.. that was a teacher and lost her job.. he feels sorry for her so she is moving in as his roommate until she can get back on her feet. Dd met her this weekend.. HE also met her this weekend.. he just met her.. he is moving her in to his home as a roommate and he knows nothing about her.. of course this is all from dd.. and she could be completely wrong! But it really pisses me off, I have NO control over that.
She is also taking piano lessons from the ex�s brother.. a young single guy.. she is taking some ballroom dance lessons and art lessons. All of the teachers are men.. and that just makes me absolutely insane!!!! I can�t do a single thing about it.
� I�ve emailed her father about some school issues but he has refused to respond to me. Sending an email about my concerns involving the exdh of SM won�t get a response and if it does it will be a nasty response that is going to send me through the roof.
I really feel like I am failing her. I can�t protect her. I don�t know who she is with or where she is. I just kind of feel out of control.
What if something is going on that she hasn�t told me?
My lawyer won�t do anything. There is not enough evidence.. and honestly, I�m tired of going to court just for DAD to get his hand slapped and nothing happen to him.
I need to know what to do outside of going to court.. how to help her..
� Do I have anything to worry about from what I have written? Is this normal? I am so scared that she is becoming depressed..
How do I control that? how do I fix it?
Is an appointment with her physician worth a try?
I think I might make an appointment for next week as a "physical" and just mention to them some of the things she is telling me.
She is sad, she isn�t happy� all the time, she feels like she wants to be happy but she is mad.
I really hope this is just a phase and not something deeper.
I really believe that depression is in our family� I don�t suffer with it but I have been depressed before.
My nephew is bipolar.. my sister is but not diagnosed, I can just see it.
My mom and grandma have suffered, my aunt and uncle..
So � is it in her? This early? Or is she just going through something.
� If anyone can give me some advice, I would greatly appreciate it!!

    Bookmark   November 23, 2011 at 11:26AM
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I had a hard time reading that Myfam. I'm concerned for your DD. I agree that astrology probably isn't helping but is hurting. I think she needs positive reinforcement of her good traits rather than excuses for her bad ones.

My dd's music teacher was a young man but I had to be in the room with them. Is there this kind of policy with DD? She should NEVER be alone with strange men, IMO.

Hugs to you Mama. Be strong! She needs you!

    Bookmark   November 23, 2011 at 3:06PM
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Silver is it hard to read because my stupid computer changed all of my punctuation to some stupid *? thing or is it hard to read because I'm scatter brained or is it because it's scary Dd is going through this?

As far as the lessons: SM's ex husband is teaching Dd ballroom dancing. She spends Saturday night with HIM and stepsister on the weekends that Dad has her. Piano is taught by his brother and art is taught by a male friend of their family. Yes she is alone. Apparently the 'room' they get lessons in is at SM's ex's house and is dedicated to dancing/music/art/entertainment like a studio. Dad nor SM are there during these lessons. They drop the girls off and pick them up on Sunday afternoon. I don't even know this guy. I only know what I've been told by SM a long time ago, my ex and now what Dd tells me. I've researched him online, he has a stable career, he lives in a nice neighborhood about 15 minutes from me, he is on Facebook and seems to be very well liked. Dd likes him. She says he is very nice, he is the best dad and plays games with them, takes them fun places, etc

My lawyer told me to contact him and introduce himself. Dd says that her dad and him are best friends and do everything together (guy stuff) so I'm thinking contacting him will not be 2 ex's against 1... He has probably been told a million evil things about me and probably believes them.. I'm still considering contacting him though. I don't care about the courts or the police, I want to meet the man that is caring for my daughter when she isn't with me or one of her other parents. I feel I have a right

Dd doesn't want me to contact him because she thinks it will cause problems. I had asked her if she had his phone number and she does not. She thinks SM will flip if she finds out I called him.

What is so frustrating is that I know Dd had a bad day yesterday and I want to know how she is doing today! I have no access to her. She told me the # I have for their house phone is not plugged in bc they do not use it. They use their cell phones. I don't have their cell phone #s. However, I could call dad on his cell phone and when he flips out that I called his cell phone, maybe he will take me to court and that would get me in front of a judge ... Hmmm that's a thought.

I am trying not to fret over Dd today bc I know I can't contact her. But it's hard. I would just like to know that today, she is HAPPY!
But they refuse to allow me to talk to her when she is with them... Which is against the court order. I'll try tonight and see if I can't reach them... I hope I'm not causing this anxiety in her. I told my husband that maybe coming home for one day was too stressful on her. Maybe she should have stayed for the entire week.. But at least I got to see her :(

    Bookmark   November 23, 2011 at 4:34PM
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I've started this several times and backed out. Afraid I guess of saying something stupid or something being taken the wrong way. But what the hay, here goes....

First, hugs to you, MyFam. I can certainly understand your worry. Totally bites that LMFam has some weird out of charactor melt down and today, pfft, you can't even check on her. Did she seem ok the next morning? Was the incident brought up?

When I first started reading your post my thoughts were going OMG. I really feared your post was going to wrap up stating some horrible beast had asbused LMFam. Then you changed direction and appeared to begin to strike the incident up as possible family mental condition. While I cant diagnose LMFam, I'll say again , her behavior with the totally out of the blue personal defense mode (slapping SDad and kicking him) did not scream family condition, it rang out IMHO as a girl who is scared, hurt, does not want to be touched. Even the hiding in her hoodie as if she's trying to protect and/or hid herslef from harm.

Was just reading your next post about contacting the gentleman LFam stays with on Saturday evenings. Just saying that, seems so many kids go off to visit their father only to be sent to father's new wife's ex husband. That's just fricking strange. Anyway....

I'd have no problems contacting this gentleman whether SM likes it or not. I'd think of it as no different than if he were one of LMFam's school mates father. You would not let her go off and stay overnight at a friend's house that you never met and knew nothing about. And that's how I'd approach it. I'd simply introduce myself, rattle about how you've heard so much about him, LMFam enjoys visiting, she's enjoying (?) her lessons in dance blah blah blah. Strictly a social call. No need to bring up your ex or his ex. I'd not be arriving and/or calling to gossip and snoop...I'd just flat out announce I want to know where my daughter spends her time. Yeah, yeah, nutty Ex gave her permission to go and Ex knows him, but this isn't about Ex (or SM) this is about you, your daughter and this gentleman. H*ll, maybe you just want to thank him for all the wonderful dance classes he is giving your child. Be creative.

I'd not text Ex. You know Sm will be the one readin gand responding.

Please take LMFam to her therapist. Is it a female? If nothing else it will give LMFam someone totally neutral to talk to. And it's someone trained to listen, not react and look for the little things that may not be actually coming out of LMFam's mouth.

    Bookmark   November 23, 2011 at 6:13PM
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Myfampg, it was hard to read because it brought tears to my eyes. I just want to give your little girl a hug. She's 10, right? Such young kids shouldn't be so sad. You know though, SS was having HUGE issues with his mom before we got him.

This isn't normal, in my opinion. I really do think seeing her therapist is the best idea, also have her see her pediatrician. Explain to the nurse and the therapist whats going on before they talk to dd, don't let her hear you though. Something is just not right. If there is something going on with your dd then these two people should be able to figure it out. If they know you are concerned and the one trying to get her help it'll be better for you. If they believe something has happened to dd with one of these men, they may call cps. Cps may open an investigation, if you work with them you should be just fine.... now bd, sm and sm's ex and so forth may not be. This could result in supervised visits with bd again. (I'm only telling you what I've seen with kids and working in the er....)

It could be depression. It's just so odd that it just all of a sudden came on so strong. Mine gradually gets worse over time. If this is what's causing her to be so sad it's treatable. I'm so sorry you are going through this.

    Bookmark   November 23, 2011 at 6:38PM
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Thanks JMT and momof3.. I appreciate your responses.

I have asked Dd in the past if she is at all uncomfortable around these men and she says no they are very nice and she has fun with them. I find it odd that three men are spending time with two young girls -- why not get girlfriends your own age. Then Dd told me that smexdh does have a gf but SM is such a freak about letting 'another woman' be around HER Dd that the gf stays away except for some days that they do spend time together. Dd really likes her too says she is very nice and hangs out with the girls like a friend. (Sm should take notes on that). Ironic that I was expected to 'get over' exdh bringing Sm around Dd right at the end of our divorce-- I was told to get over it and grow up-- that I can't control who he takes Dd around but yet SM can't handle 3 1/2 years after her divorce... Her ex having a girlfriend around their daughter. And yep.. You read that right. Do the math. We have been divorced for almost 7 years. Ex met sm before the divorce was final but sm has only been divorced for a little over 3 years... And these two men Are good friends?? So weird!!!!

I thought maybe DD was just overwhelmed from a long weekend at BD's and with only one night to be at home, she was feeling anxious and tired .. She is always extremely tired when she comes home because they are so busy on the weekends.

I did not know how Dd was the next morning .. On Monday night she had the melt down, Tuesday morning she seemed happy and fine. It was Tuesday at lunch that she acted weird, putting her hoodie over her head and having apparent friend issues. Ex picked her up from school on tuesday and I won't see her again until Sunday night. I'd like to know if her day got better. Fortunately, her grandparents are in town this week and her visits seem to go well when they are here. SM doesn't act up as much or send Dd away to her ex's when they are in town. However, Dd experiencing a lot of jealousy when they are around because she has to fight for their attention... All of her cousins will be in town along with SM's family and then there is the ever-so-social stepsister that gets LOTS of attention. Dd complains that they pay more attention to stepsister when they are in town and they don't seem to show Dd attention. I think they probably show both equal attention, Dd is just reserved and won't talk over anyone or put herself in the middle of attention over stepsister who is extremely excitable, loud and outgoing. I know Dd is having some issues with stepsister lately. She complains that everything is about 'her'. Dd can't do her homework bc she has to watch stepsisters gymnastics or she can't watch what she wants to watch bc it's stepsister that gets to pick. Or she can't play with these toys because they are special to stepsister. Stepsister always gets to pick the restaurant or the dinner menu or Dd has to wait on SM bc she has to pick up stepsister first. Things like this. Dd even told me that she has the top bunk at their house but when she isn't there, stepsister sleeps in her bed.. Dd hates it bc stepsister moves her things or she'll say 'it's not even my room!' I have to share everything. These is a lot of competition between the girls and granted they are not that far in age but they are one grade level apart. They always tell Dd that stepsister can do more math or read faster and she's younger! Yay stepsister. Dd was terrified to take her report card home last Friday so she left it in her locker to bring home to me. Dd did not make A honor roll and she is extremely embarrassed by it. She didn't want to hear how SS made honor roll and did better or whatever. Maybe that is a lot of stress on her and that is where her attitude comes out when she comes home?
I've been told that the reason she acts out with me is bc she is comfortable with me. Maybe that is true. I don't know. She would never talk back to dad and sm because she knows she would be punished a million times worse than she ever would be here.

I think supervised visits would be awesome. He isn't spending time with her any way. I will never understand why they gave him his rights back to begin with. The therapist always said, we know we can't change him so we need to teach Dd how to handle it... I have always thought that was wrong. If a parent can't be a parent, you don't let them parent. You don't tell the kid to change and adjust to the parenting... You change or remove the parenting. Argh!

Thanks for letting me vent.

    Bookmark   November 23, 2011 at 8:08PM
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I do think littlemyfam would benefit from counselling, she sounds so sad. And you can tell her from me it's BS about Geminis being moody- I'm a Gemini and if you want to "believe" in astrology the main thing about Geminis is that they have different personas for different situations- they can all be happy ones :-)
But, please don't take this the wrong way, I also think you stress a lot about your DD (which is understandable) and I think that stress is spilling over onto her and not helping. You can't control every aspect of her life, and nor should you want to. No one can control every aspect of their own life, let alone another person's. What you can do is teach her how to deal with it when life throws her a curve ball. I tend to agree with the therapist that DD would be better off learning how to adjust to the parenting, after all she is going to have to deal with different personalities (teachers, employers etc) all her life and it is unreasonable and pointless to expect them all to behave in the same way.
I would be insisting on meeting littlemyfam's various after-hours teachers, as her parent it is your responsibility to meet the other adults who have her in their care. My DD used to get so exasperated when we insisted on meeting the parents of her friends if she was going over to their house but we just told her, tough.
I heard a child psychologist say many years ago that when children act up and yell "I hate you!" to their parents it means they are secure enough in that relationship to do so. Children who are not sure don't rock the boat.

    Bookmark   November 23, 2011 at 9:53PM
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Thank you Colleen-- I'm in therapy too bc the stress from the fighting and court battles with my ex (and his wife physically assaulting me) had me completely at the end of my rope. I don't really want to control her life, I just want her to have a normal life. She is with a woman who despises me and insists that I am NOT my daughter's mother when she is in their home. My daughter is not allowed to talk about me or call me 'mom'. She has to refer to me by my first name. She is not allowed to call my son, her little brother 'her little brother' because he is not her 'full' blood brother. She's shipped off to another man's house every weekend when she is desperately wanting to be with her dad. She is not allowed to hug, cuddle or sit next to her own father when in the presence of sm because it's 'inappropriate'. She is on a special diet at their house because they believe she is overweight (she is not). If I fix her hair for school, as soon as they pick her up, her hair is taken down because they do not like it, therefore on Thursday's, Dd will not let me fix her hair. She is not allowed to bathe because she takes too long and cannot bathe at their house until she can get it under 2 minutes. She goes from thursday morning to Monday night without a bath UNLESS she goes to the ex of Sm's house because he allows her to shower. These are things I have been told by my daughter and confirmed by my ex, her father. He sees nothing wrong with these things and I am completely appauled.

I do agree that my daughter needs to learn to adjust to new situations and new people in her life. 100% agree. BUT I believe that this treatment from her dad is going to cause her some issues in her teenage years and into her adult life. She is going to start searching for a man to replace her daddy and to get attention from any man she can because she is missing it from him. These concerns have been validated by my therapist and a co-parenting therapist along with my attorney and our judge. However, the law only allows the judge to do so much. They mediate and make orders. Their sole intent is for both parents to be in a child's life. I always have said that she needs her father. I've slowly changed my mind as they have become more odd in their beliefs and as my daughter has gotten older. She would be better off without him than him being right in front of her unreachable.

I have left a message for her therapist to schedule an appointment after the holiday. Maybe if her therapist can talk her into some 'tools' she can use to stand up for herself then she will start being happier. I am concerned because she is at that age and I'm confused by 'is this hormonal and just a phase' or 'is it caused by her environment'?
I really hope this is just hormonal. She is just not the same kid. She us slowly turning into a stranger and just not the happy go lucky kid she always has been. I don't want to lose her but I also don't want to smother her. Dd doesn't know I'm worried about her. I keep my feelings in check and I come here and explode them out. I am not sure if I always say the right things or have the best advice for her. I have not interviened with issues at her dad's house. I tell her she needs to talk to him. I listen and I give hugs but I know I can't talk to him about any of this because then he will tell me that she isn't like that with him and obviously its me lol been there done that.

I'm just worried about her.

    Bookmark   November 23, 2011 at 11:32PM
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Again, I really want to find your daughters dad and sm and back hand them! (ds11 has informed me that if you smack someone with your palm it's discipline but if you back hand them it's abuse HAHAHA) All 4 of my boys call each other brother and none of them are "full blood". Even bm calls them ss's brothers. UGH! She's just plane psycho! The way they treat her is bound to have an effect on her.

What colleenoz says about the hate word.... THANKS! My ds11 texted me a few weeks ago that he hated me. He's my "mama's boy" so I knew it wasn't true.

I'm glad you are getting her in to see the therapist. It's got to help her.

    Bookmark   November 24, 2011 at 12:00AM
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When I read the OP, my first thought was that perhaps something happened during the visit... it seems like such a drastic change in behavior & very defensive/protective acting out. I would explore the possibility of possible inappropriate behavior. The alarm was ringing in my head. Perhaps nothing happened but don't assume because she said nothing happened or he's nice, etc. that she isn't just saying that.

I was molested & went years without telling anyone because I didn't want to get in trouble or burden my parents with it. I was able to limit/eliminate being around my abuser but lots of thoughts went through my 7 year old head... things like nobody would believe me, someone might blame me, it would cause problems for everyone, he would get in trouble and everyone would hate me. I was also afraid to tell because his granddaughter was a friend & I didn't want to lose being able to play with her or be the one to get her grandpa in trouble. It never occurred to my child brain that he might be doing the same to her & someone should know to make him stop. That has haunted me & to this day, I wonder what, if anything, she went through.

My daughter told me when she was 14, that when she was 8 or 9 & playing at her friend's house, the father had done some inappropriate play that made her feel weird but she didn't tell me because she didn't want to get in trouble. It was really hard to hear that after my own experience. I know her pain and felt guilty for not doing enough so she could feel comfortable telling me right away.

Besides that, the SM's behavior is horribly inappropriate & could be damaging. However, if you take the high road (like I think you are), then your DD will always know who her mom is & if she doesn't already know, she will soon figure out what a nut her SM is. Glad she's in counseling.

    Bookmark   November 24, 2011 at 12:18AM
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All the mothers I know would be under stress from the situation your daughter is in. You're not trying to control her life, and the things you are concerned about are things any normal mom would be very, very concerned about. You are right to be appalled. Please don't ever be defensive or second guess yourself about that.

I'm so glad she's going to the therapist.

It may be that she is going through something difficult. I remember when my daughter was in fifth grade, a lot of the girls were changing and their moms felt like they hardly knew them. They were hormonal, moody, mean, etc. So it's probably hard to tell whether this is just regular moody fifth grade girl or whether or not there's something more difficult behind it all. My own daughter had issues a few years later, and for awhile it was very hard to tell whether or not she was going through normal teen stuff or something deeper. My "mom radar" was going off like crazy while everyone else assured me that things were just fine, that was just teen-aged girl stuff. I finally ignored everybody else and followed my gut, and I was right, they were wrong. But it's very difficult to be in the spot you are now - unsure whether or not its hormones or something else.

I don't have any advice, but just want to say that your feelings, thoughts, concerns, fears are just what all the other good moms I know would be feeling in your situation. Sounds like you are doing a great job, and that will make all the difference in the world in your little girl's life. Light shines brightest in the darkness, and your sanity and grace will shine out all the brighter for your daughter.

    Bookmark   November 24, 2011 at 1:08AM
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I am so sorry. My prayers. Also, dont be afraid to call the therapist to provide any background. It may be hard to for your DD to volunteer stuff to the therapist, and you can help the therapist ask questions.

    Bookmark   November 24, 2011 at 2:40PM
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Sorry you and your DD are going through this. I think while it is important for your DD to learn how to handle difficult situations, you also want to make sure she gets help for any issues she has. Maybe she's mad or jealous of her step sister, maybe she's mad that she gets dumped off at step sister's dad's house on the weekend instead of spending time with her own dad. I think the best thing for your DD is therapy to find out exactly what's going on, and get her the help she needs to learn how to cope with whatever problems she's having.

    Bookmark   November 25, 2011 at 10:05AM
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