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Stepmother is Disrespectful

Posted by qwerty97 (My Page) on
Fri, Nov 23, 12 at 12:43

My stepmother is constantly finding ways to put me down ,as well as my brothers. She screams and curses at us all the time, and she tells me that I "don't contribute to the household at all". I'm 15 years old, and I put any extra time I have after school, my internship, and homework, toward chores. I weed, I sweep, I help with cooking, I clean. I certainly don't do everything, and I don't pay for my room, but I do what I can. And before my father gained full custody of my brothers and I, we were at outr mother's almost full time. I dearly love her, but she rarely worked and had a drinking problem. Her only income was child support. At her house, I was doing everything. Every single day, I cooked the meals. I kept the house in order. I checked my brothers' homework. I got them up for school. So it is incredibly insulting to be told that I do not contribute. She also has little regard for my time. She assignes tasks for me to complete immediately right as I am leaving for work. When I try to explain that I can't be late, she just cusses me out, and I end up being late just to do whatever she needs me to do. And yesterday, when I asked if she wanted help with Thanksgiving dinner (I felt bad, as she had not made me do anything), she replied, "no, not from you," in a nasty tone. Later, when she told my brothers and I to wash and dry the dishes, she shoved her finger in my face and told me, "you dry. I don't trust you to wash the dishes." I apologized, and then she told me, "you can go to your room if you're going to have an attitude." I'm not sure what I did there. Perhaps it was the tone I had used when I apologized; I tried very hard not to sound defiant, and I'm not sure I succeeded. Or maybe it was the insulted expression my brother told me was on my face when I apologized. Either way, I think that far worse a response may have been justified, given the level of insult and the fact that she did it in front of my brothers AND my father. She also criticizes my mother frequently ("your mother is a b----"), and she usually does it in front of me and both of my siblings (ages 13 and 9). And worst of all, she continues to allege that I have an eating disorder, and that I am lying when I say the doctor told me I was 10 pounds underweight. Not being an M.D., I don't know whether being 92 pounds constitutes an eating disorder, but she's not an M.D. either. She uses this alleged eating disorder as a threat, to get me to do things ("if you don't do this, I'll tell the doctor you have an eating disorder"). She also continues to cite the fact that I don't eat all of the snacks I'm allowed to in a week as further evidence of my "eating disorder". I'm really not sure how to please her. I know that I can't keep living with her constantly on my back, insulting my intelligence ("you have the smarts of a 6th grader"), etc. Since I moved in permanently, my grades have dropped by about a letter. I already know what happens if they drop too far: my 13- year-old brother was constantly screamed at and belittled by my stepmother, in addition to being grounded, when his grades fell because he didn't have enought time every day to finish his homework (his bedtime is 7:30, and even though he gets home at 3:30, she has him do chores for 2-3 hours first, plus dinner). I have the option to move in with my grandparents in December. Should I do this? Or is there some way to make my stepmother happy? Please advise.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Stepmother is Disrespectful

There will never be a way to make her happy. Yes, leave. Try to convince your Grandparents to take younger sibling too.


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RE: Stepmother is Disrespectful

And your father stands by and lets this happen? What a Dad.
For once I agree with kkny, go to your grandparents and take your brothers with you. Even if you have to offer to do more chores to assist with their care, the trade off in less stress will be worth it.


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RE: Stepmother is Disrespectful

You need to hug on to the knowledge that the problem in your household is NOT you. Whatever, for whatever reason is your stepmom and exists running around in her head. KK is correct...you will never ever make this woman happy. No matter how hard you try, nor how perfectly you've done something. The lady is wearing dark glasses, so to say, and will see only distortion to reality.

Yes, if Grandma and Grandpa are inviting you to live with them, take the offer and go. And I agree, see if you can't also bring your brothers. The door is opening for you to escape a very unhealthy situation...don't let the door close, run through it and don't look back.


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RE: Stepmother is Disrespectful

You sound like a very bright and capable young woman. (With a quirky sense of humor - choosing "qwerty97" as your moniker.)

I am going to disagree with your header. Your stepmother is not disrespectful, she is abusive. The longer you stay the more damage she will do to you and your brothers.

I don't know the situation at your grandparents' but if it is even 1 millimeter better than what you're living with, go there.

If you haven't looked into it, I'd also recommend Alateen, which is a nonprofit group devoted to helping children of alcoholic parents. They will help you develop coping strategies for your very difficult situation, because you have multiple challenges.

People who grow up with alcoholism and abuse, as you have, often learn ways to "keep the peace" that damage who they are. You can survive this, but it means learning new ways to respond to your challenges.

Aside from your grandparents, look for caring adults who can mentor you and provide a new support system - teachers, counselors, pastors, parents of friends - the more people you have in your corner the better off you are.


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RE: Stepmother is Disrespectful

Good grief! We are all hoping you can get out of there in December! There is no excuse for anyone to cuss and belittle another. No excuse. Does your father not step in at all?
As for an eating disorder, do you throw up after you eat? I don't know how tall you are, but teens tend to be thin. You know whether you eat or not, don't worry about what your SM will tell the doctor. I was always too thin according to the charts, and I did not have an eating problem, I'm just a thin person.
Anyway, you sound like a very intelligent teen. Will things be better at your grandparents? Are these your maternal or paternal grandparents? Do they live close enough so don't have to change schools? Even so, get out of the abusive SM situation if you can, even if you have to go without your brothers. Let us know. I wish you the best!


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RE: Stepmother is Disrespectful

Thank you for all of the support. I will certainly be able to move to my grandparents in December, but ot will be more difficult to get my Dad to allow my brothers to go, too, although not impossible. laVerneMaynard7, no I don't throw up after meals. I'm about 5'4". These are my maternal grandparents, and things will definitely be better there. However, they do live 400 miles away. Readinglady, thank you, I will look into Alateen.


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RE: Stepmother is Disrespectful

I have two teen daughters (15&16) that barely weigh 100 pounds and they are much taller than you. No eating disorder there. Also, you sound very mature and bright for your age so I'm not sure what your step mom is talking about. She sounds like a real GEM! I really feel for you because you sound like a great kid and this is not a good environment for you or your brothers. Maybe I missed something but where is your dad? What is he doing while your stepmother is acting this way?


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RE: Stepmother is Disrespectful

Keep in mind that your relationship with your doctor is confidential and that your stepmother has no standing or right to interfere in that relationship.

Let her sputter and threaten. You can safely ignore anything she says about your weight or health. I'm sure if your doctor had a concern or believed you fell outside the normal range, he/she would tell you.

Your grades should improve when you're out of this situation. It's hard to do well when you have this weight on your shoulders.


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RE: Stepmother is Disrespectful

You have not mentioned your dad much. Why? Where was he when all of these happening?

I think you should think about going somewhere to live with your other relatives. Your brother should express his desire as well


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RE: Stepmother is Disrespectful

It's not your job to make anyone else happy, honey. It can seem that way when someone abuses you. It can be so hard to believe that your step-mother is really talking about herself when she belittles you, your brothers and your mother. It can seem that 'if only you get this, that or the other thing' just so, then she'll be happy and stop mistreating you. She won't. Unless and until she wants to change, she won't. It has to be hard on your heart to have your Dad sit by and not stop her. That's not your fault either.

I hope that when you read this you'll be safely out of there at your Grandparents. And I hope that you can trust that when even one family member does what's best for her life, that's also a help to others in the family.

Finally, I'm so glad you agree w/readinglady and will check out Alateen. If there's no Alateen nearby, go to Alanon. If you can't find meetings, see if you can find Alateen online. Alcoholism is a disease that affects everyone nearby. I can tell you are a shining girl w/a beautiful heart. Don't give up!!


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