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Too close father/daughter....

(92 Posts)
AnnaClaudia Thu 18-Apr-13 20:47:50

Three years ago I met a new man after separating from my partner of 20 years. I welcomed the fact that he was a lone parent of a teenage girl. As the years have gone by however I have become increasingly uncomfortable with their relationship. He seems to treat her as a partner, rather than a daughter.

He takes her to the pub with him, (they share wine when at home), lets her dress extremely provocatively and seems proud when men ogle at her. When they are sitting on the sofa together they are draped over each other like a courting couple. She is now 16 and almost too old to rein in now. He has admitted he will never say "no" to anything she wants, allowing her to entertain various boys in her room, let her boyfriend stay over on numerous occasions (on the sofa) when she was 14. I got up early one morning to find said boyfriend in her room, so said it was either him staying over or me!

If I try to protest about her behaviour (I have 5 children of my own so have a lot of experience of parenting) he wont listen and gets angry. I was brought up away from my father so have no idea if sitting entwined with your daughter stroking her arms/ legs is "normal", though dont remember any of my friends being like this with their fathers when I was a teen. She gets angry if we go out as a couple and dont invite her, so we have to go to pubs which allow under 18's. He admitted they talk about things when alone that fathers and daughters dont usually discuss - I was afraid to ask what!

Am I right to be concerned or am I just envious of their closeness as I never had it with my own father?

escape Thu 18-Apr-13 20:50:33

I think it's good that you recognise it could be a difference in 'styles' as it's out of your realm of experience, but I don't know of many girls beyond 12 who are 'touchy feel' with Dad, despite being close.
My main concern is that you never go out without her?
That's controlling form her end and weak from his.
Alarm bells.

HeySoulSister Thu 18-Apr-13 20:50:37

concerned? if its normal for them and she's happy then leave them be!!

DearJohnLoveSavannah Thu 18-Apr-13 20:52:17

I got up early one morning to find said boyfriend in her room, so said it was either him staying over or me

Why? How does her boyfriend staying over have any impact on your what so ever?

If I try to protest about her behaviour (I have 5 children of my own so have a lot of experience of parenting) he wont listen and gets angry

You can't tell him how to parent his own child. By doing so you are criticising him.

Yes it does sound a little odd about the stroking of the arms and legs though.

Fairyliz Thu 18-Apr-13 20:55:49

Well all I can say is I have teenage daughters aged 16 and 18 and they definately don't act like this with their dad. I think they would run a mile if he asked them down the pub, not cool at all. I'm with you op it does seem very strange to me, sounds like she is jealous of you relationship with her dad and wants to 'prove' he loves her most.

messalina Thu 18-Apr-13 20:57:23

It doesn't sound like a typical father-daughter relationship but perhaps you need to look at it slightly differently as he is a lone parent and perhaps also doing the sorts of things mothers might do with daughters. Mothers might well be more touchy-feely with their daughters. I think it sounds as if the issue is more to do with his failure to set "normal" boundaries (letting boyfriends stay over when his DD is 14 does sound pretty rare) rather than anything else. Does sound as though she has him twisted round her little finger.

AnnaClaudia Thu 18-Apr-13 20:57:45

She will "allow" us to go out alone if she has somewhere to go herself, but will text him when she gets in and insist on coming to where we are, be it restaurant or pub. He will then ask landlord of pub if she can come in, if not we have to leave. Ive tried to explain nicely to her that adults need time alone together but she still insists on turning up. I have tried to treat her like one of my own, but she is very different from my two daughters. Asked if she would mind if we go out alone once a month or so but this was met with resentment from her.

ImTooHecsyForYourParty Thu 18-Apr-13 20:59:35

Are you the poster with the longstanding boyfriend and inappropriate relationship with daughter problem? Them teaming up 'against' you?

If you are uncomfortable with the situation - you have the choice to leave it.

I think it sounds really odd and tbh, I would remove myself from it. I would probably also report my concerns and ask that someone take a look.

AnnaClaudia Thu 18-Apr-13 20:59:53

I felt at 14 they were too young to be having that sort of relationship, am I old fashioned then?

pigsDOfly Thu 18-Apr-13 21:03:46

As a mother I have a very close relationship with both my daughters and will hug and kiss them when we say goodbye but I wouldn't sit entwined with them on the sofa.

In your place I'd feel very uncomfortable and pissed off with the idea that she has always have to come out with you, and therefore has control over where you go and what you do. Doesn't she have any friends of her own?

No you can't tell him how to parent his child, but it all sounds a bit unhealthy to me.

GingerJulep Thu 18-Apr-13 21:04:34

A couple of Christmases ago I fell asleep on the sofa hugging my Dad. I'm in my 30s and married. We're just a huggy family. Who talk about all sorts and still go to the pub together.

Having said that there obviously ARE families where inappropriate things are happening.

On a forum it is really hard to tell what is jealous new gf/odd single parent relationship/combination of the two.

If your bf and his daughter have lived alone for some time though it would be pretty common for their relationship to be closer (in both good and bad ways) than yours with your five.

You see her dressed provocatively and men eying her up and him being proud of that, he probably just sees his baby looking lovely and is proud of his beautiful daughter.

You can't expect his relationship with his daughter to change to suit you, you have the choice to put up with it or leave. Would you allow him to control aspects of your relationship with your children that you were comfortable with because he didn't like it?

HazardLamps Thu 18-Apr-13 21:05:30

Concerned about what?
How he parents is his own affair, it's not your place to comment on how his 16 year old dresses or who stays in his house.

At 16 she is less of a child and more a young woman and it's no longer a case of him "letting" her dress in whatever way she pleases. And, if she's mature enough company to join him in the pub or to chat with over a glass of wine at home that can hardly be a bad thing.

If they've always had a close, touchy-feely relationship I suppose it's inevitable that this will continue as she grows older. It's probably just the way they are.

My only concern would be that you cannot do things with your boyfriend as a couple, without his daughter tagging along, which would be just as irritating to me if she were 16 or 6. I think I'd be asking myself if I wanted to remain with a man who always felt that he had to give in to his princess's demands on that front.

HairyGrotter Thu 18-Apr-13 21:07:18

I wouldn't say it was a 'healthy attachment'. I'm all for being close as parent and child during the teens, but I think they need their space. Yes, parents and teenagers can be 'close' but having this level of interaction and control does not sound healthy.

YANBU in terms of thinking it odd, but not sure I'd step up and say much about it.

AnnaClaudia Thu 18-Apr-13 21:09:40

Thanks for your thoughts - pigsdofly, she has mainly friends that are boys - girls dont take to her as she is nearly always very provocatively dressed as I said, and this seems to alienate her from girls. She will flirt around middle aged men just as she does with boys her own age, this also makes me feel uneasy.

AnyFucker Germany Thu 18-Apr-13 21:12:14

is that you, boxy ?

everlong Thu 18-Apr-13 21:12:36

Dare I say it but you sound a bit jealous of their relationship.

Portofino Thu 18-Apr-13 21:12:59

I wouldn't bother myself. You can do better.

larks35 Thu 18-Apr-13 21:13:48

It sounds a bit like a father/daughter I know. His daughter moved in with him when she was about 12 I think following problems with her mum and new family. He was a kind of friend of mine and although he welcomed his daughter, he didn't change his pub-based life-style just used to bring her with him. I haven't seen him in years but can imagine this being him (except I think his daughter would be more like 20 by now).

I dunno, my dad used to rub/stroke my shoulders, arms etc. when we chilled on a sofa, I used to rub his feet. We were both tactile people, it wasn't anything more than that.

However, I do think you have the right to ask for a night out with him alone and if he can't do it, dump him. If you have managed to find child-care for your 5, then surely he can leave her either with a friend or alone!

It sounds odd to me. The OP is not weird for being uncomfortable with it. I have known plenty of parents treat their teenage children as mini adults, whether fulfilling a partner role or a co-parent to a younger sibling. It speaks of an inability to meet their own emotional needs in an appropriate manner. I doubt there is a sexual element to this but it sounds like this man has his boundaries all out of whack.

JazzTheDog Thu 18-Apr-13 21:14:40

My teenage stepdaughters are very touchy feeling with DH, cuddling up to him on the sofa, SDD1 in particular always sits with her legs up on his. However, they also give us plenty of space as a couple.

Is the daughter jealous of your relationship with her dad?

He admitted they talk about things when alone that fathers and daughters dont usually discuss

This is concerning. He is treating her as a contemporary and she is not.

AnnaClaudia Thu 18-Apr-13 21:15:21

Thanks for your coments hazardlamps, he wont hold back on commenting how I conduct my life though, surely it works both ways? He has only had sole custody of her since she was 12. If I protest at not being able to go out alone together he gets angry and accuses me of "wanting to be first in his life"! I have 5 kids, I accept Im not first in anything, lol. Have tried to leave the relationship many times, but that little thing called "love" stops me, my only hope is that the "wrongs" in the relationship will kill my feelings eventually...........

CognitiveOverload Thu 18-Apr-13 21:15:33

Perhaps he is trying to be a mother and a father to her in the only ways he knows. Perhaps she is threatened by you. ..but sounds to me like he is all she has.

Oh. Are you boxy OP?

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