End of my tether with DSD!!!!!(63 Posts)
Hi all I have literally had to buy myself 10 minutes to come and write this as i am losing the will to live and need some none judgemental advice and support!!!My DP and I have been together for 3 years and I have known his daughter for 2 of them years. She is 4. myself and DP also have an 8 month old daughter. We live on a farm and at the moment we have 600 sheep lambing and around 100 calves calving so we are stupidly busy!! DP's daughterhas been with us for 4 days straight now as its the holidays and funnily enough her mother always seems to offload her onto us when shes not at school. She is so rude to me and her dad and anyone else for that matter, we are trying to run a farm but she is constantly putting herself in danger to get attention (she gets plenty of attention of her dad btw.) Everyone panders to her and I think that this is part of the problem. She keeps saying 'my mummy said that Isobel isnt my real sister and that my daddy isnt Isobels dad.' I know for a fact that this has come from her poisoned tongue mother as all of the way through my pregnancy she was ringing DP up crying because I was pregnant!!! She is very manipulative for a child of her age and will say things like 'my mummy loves me all of the time but you only love me sometimes' to her dad to get her own way and it works!! I have such a job to get any food into her. We eat a very healthy diet with plenty of fruit and veg. She says that she only eat crisps, chocolate, fish fingers and beans at home which I can only agree with as her mother is the size of a house end (sorry to get personal). There is just a total lack of respect and she isnt being taught. She wakes up at least2 times a night and refuses to go back to sleep unless her dad sleeps in bed with her (This stems for her mother having her in bed with her untill she was 2) Me and DP have been up at 5 every morning whilst the kids are still in bed to go outside in all weathers and work and when you have a child staying over 4 nights a week who wakes up so frequently its 10 times harder. If DP hugs me she will hit me and scream so that he hugs her instead. There is one hell of a lot more but I just dont have time to go into it right now, this is jus the tip of the iceberg, really struggling
I didn't want to read and run. It does sound very difficult, particularly as you are at one of the busiest times of the year on a farm. In the short term, are there grandparents who could come and visit and help look after her? It sounds very much as though (at the moment anyway) she is still desperate for attention and doesn't know how she fits in to the family dynamic.
She's only four. You have plenty of time to make her feel loved and comfortable at home with you. You will need to have a conversation with your DP to make sure you're on the same page, and you're both going to enforce the rules - no crisps and rubbish food, etc. But it's difficult because of the time of year - any favourite aunties and uncles around if there aren't any grandparents?
Oh gosh :-(
I'm in a rush too but be firm and consistent regarding the rules at your house; insist on a healthy diet, put her on the naughty step when she's rude and make her stay there, firmly put her back to bed on her own when she gets up at night. She'll get it eventually. SC are quite able to cope with two sets of rules - plenty do. Our home and my DSD's Mums are totally different. DSD doesn't seem to have any issues moving between the two or accepting that there are different expectations at Daddy's house to Mummy's anymore. Whether it's healthy in the long run to have to adapt to two completely different homes I don't know but actually, that's her ultimately parents' responsibility, not yours.
The repeating stuff her Mum has said about her sister not being her sister isn't her fault. She's only 4 and can't be held responsible for it. But your DP could speak to Mum about it, make it clear he knows what's happening and he doesn't approve.
Good luck with the lambing!
Four is tiny. This is a tiny child you're bitching about. Poor little girl.
Sorry your are going through a rough time. With the food, she will eat it if she is hungry, if she didn't, she can wait till the next meal. That's what my parents did with me and it worked and that's what I do with my children and stepchildren. I agree children do learning about different rules in different places i.e. rules in mums house are different to Nan's house school Ect. I think your Dp really need to address negative comments coming from the ex wife, ultimately she is not helping her own daughter. Sorry I don't have better advice op but I'm sure some other great step mums will be along to help.
Gallstone cow why make her feel rubbish, she isn't bitching she needs advice on a difficult child.
I don't have much advice to give but I do hope things improve, It sounds like her mum is spoiling her, manipulating her and telling her to say these things. plus she while she is only 4, 4 year olds aren't stupid, she's been taught to manipulate so she does.
I hope you manage to sort yourfarm out ok, it's unfortunate that it's the sort of life you don't get a break from and can't just stop because she's there. I can see why she wants more attention if you're both working all day but there's not much you can do.
I would be firm about the eating, studies show if a child has a certain food put on their plate about 5 times they will try it. The naughty step is a good Idea too.
No im not bitching!! Walk a mile in my shoes its her mother who is the problem I am looking for help on how to deal with her. LIKE i SAID I WANTED NONE JUDGEMENTAL ADVICE SO WHY COMMENT!!
First of all - Take a deep breath! Breathe in, and out. I can understand that you are feeling frustrated however I would spend less time worrying about your SD mother and focus on your partner. He doesn't seem to be on the same page as you are. He needs to step up to sort this behavior out (even though a lot of dads feel some kind of guilt) HE also needs to stop her from hitting you. Be honest with each other and tell him how much it is affecting you. If he doesn't understand you could say that you need space away from his DD. If she is 4 and creating these problems NOW imagine what shes going to be like age 8 onwards if you both let her behave the way she is. The farming must be stressful too. I would take a huge step back and let your OH deal with this. He has to for your sake and your own child's sake. When you child is older they will think her behavior is normal. Set rules and boundaries now.
She sounds very confused. I'm sure it's incredibly hard for you but four year olds are still little (not judging! They are bloody hard work too).
Some things you can do:
- praise and label good behaviours. You are speaking nicely to [your dd]. You are using very gentle hands. Etc
- try and ignore unwanted behaviours. Time out is a good idea but watch you are not using it too much. Once she is back from time out try and engage her positively
- pick your battles. Go easy on the food thing if it's not what she is used to. I've been putting vegetables on my one of my DT's plate every day for two years and he still won't touch them, let alone five times!
- it'll be really hard for her to get back to sleep on her own if she's used to being cuddled. You need to break this habit either gently (gradual withdrawal) or cold turkey
- try and stay calm and model calming yourself down. Count to five aloud; tell her you are leaving the room to calm down, etc. and hopefully she will pick up on some of that
- I know you said she gets lots of attention from your DH but make sure she has some one to one time where he is really focused on her every day. Ten minutes a day will help, more if possible
- if you implement these kind of things, be prepared for behaviours to get worse before they get better
I do hope things improve for you!
Definitely agree with positive reinforcement. dsd had a huge tantrum with me when dp was out about a week ago, she wouldn't let go of her fork when I tried to take it off her and refused to go to her room, it escalated and in the end I stood outside the front door for two minutes to calm down and she went to her room. She started a similar thing with me and dp last night, tried to grab something off me when dp said she couldn't have it and wouldn't let go so dp told her to go to her room and again she refused. With the combined efforts of us both she went to her room much quicker. And when she came back out despite being angry that she'd broken her promise not to do it again I bit my tongue and said thank you and well done for stopping before it got like last time. Maybe trying to praise her when she does eventually do as she is told will help?
Poor little girl. I don't say that as a criticism of you - I feel for you too. But I think you really need to not lose sight of the fact that this is a tiny child all in a mess and that's not her fault.
I would say don't be so quick to blame everything on her mother - who I do think sounds like a bad parent for dragging her daughter into her own difficulty dealing with her ex moving on.
You're very quick to say the child wants her dad in the night because her mum coslept until 2. Regardless of what you feel about co-sleeping yourself, note that it was til she was 2. Not now. So how is that because of co-sleeping? My 5yp still co-sleeps with me, it suits us. She doesn't with her dad (divorced). It's just about different rules and expectations.
I am a fan of co-sleeping (obviously!) so I personally think she should be in with you and dad whilst she's so vulnerable - but I know others would have a different view!
Anyway, that's just an example of how I think it doesn't help to blame her mother for everything - I think the cosleeping request is because she's insecure about her dad.
I also think it's possibly fair enough she's up for the holidays - it's his daughter! A working farm is not an easy place to keep a child entertained. Should she even be there? Why hasn't he put her in a holiday club? Is there someone to look after her? (who has the baby - you must be working opposite shifts to your partner?)
I really echo what others say about kids accepting two sets of rules. If she's rude, don't stand for it. Give her the food you eat, and expect her to eat it. Whilst at THR same time recognizing that baked beans are not the worst food in the world!
When she says her dad only loves her sometimes, he has to correct her and reassure her. "Daddy doesn't live with you all the time, but Daddy loves you all the time".
Love bomb her, whilst being firm with your house rules.
Yes I know that none of this is her fault, if anything I am discusted at the BS her mother is putting into her head-its awful! Why do that to any child never mind your own flesh and blood. I want it sorting as I dont particuarly want my daughter picking up on it and doing the same. As for the co-seeping, I didnt mean to cause any offence! To be fair we dont have a big enough bed to accommodate co-sleeping anyway haha. I was always so worried about roling onto my daughter when she was tiny but admittedly I did sometimes used to fall asleep with her when I was breastfeeding. My DP is a great dad but he doesnt treat them both the same, he tends to avish all of his attention onto DSD while our daughter doesnt really get a look in even when DSD isnt here, for example he would never just pick Isobel up spontaneously for a cuddle I would have to pass her to him. I am generally the one who looks after them both if DP is busy doing tractor work or something where DSD would get in the way, we dont work opposite shifts I can just mutitask better than him, I have the pateience to work and be abe to look after DSD and my DD at the same time, its hard but I manage. Shes up for the holidays for the whole two weeks and its like it every hoiday even when shes at school we have her 4 nights a week and all weekend so he mum hardly sees her through the week and rarely on a weekend. She barely has her daughter at all through the holidays. She is going back this monday (the night before she starts schoo the next morning) so weve had her for two weeks straight - in that time she hasnt sen her mother once, if that was my child I hadnt seen for two weeks I would be going mad! Anyway a we bit more explained there, thanks for being nonoe judgemental and supportive, I am ony seeking advice for the benefit of this little gir whatever anyone may think!
Sorry I meant shes going back not next monday but the monday after that as our term time is a bit later than everyone elses x
Maybe someone could look after her whilst you and your DP work. 4 year olds need proper attention. Your DSD may need even more as your home is not her full time home. If you have to work on the farm it would be better to have someone look after your DCs.
A 4 year old is seen as 'offload her onto us ', does your DP also see his daugher in this poor light?
When a 4 year old is rude and acting out, it is normally to seek attention or validation because they are unable to articulate their feelings. Is she being reassured that she does not have to compete for her father's attention?
Have you raised your concerns about your DP and his 8 month old relationship?
Could it that he is compensating for not providing a 2-parent home for his eldest?
Does he encourage her to respect you?
I have mentioned in the past about the relationship with DD and he admitted he had found it difficult as she was born in the same hospital as DSD. I could tell he was down and as a result I was down and ended up with mild PND as I remember him gushing about how happy he was when DSD was born and he was just so withdrawn and seemingly uninterested when DD was born and it made me upset. He wanted me to have an abortion when I found out I was pregnant because he was worried about the impact it would have on DSD so I suppose in a way I resented her almost for that at the time (he was worried about telling his ex as well), I am against abortion and i told him it wasnt an option and that plenty of other kids whose parents have split go on to have half siblings and are totally fine! He is better with DD but there is still some sort of bond that he has with DSD missing, I dont know what, its just my instinct. She is constantly reminded that daddy loves her and mummy does too! He tries to encourage her to respect me but half heartedly, there is no firmness to his voice but to be fair she acts up more when hes around anyway because she knows she can get away with one hell of a lot if hes around whereas I tend to stand for no BS (I would be the same with DD I think its so important to set boundaries when kids are trying to push them)
Some of this behavior might be confusion as to why she doesn't get to spend time with her own DM?! Poor DSD.
And your DP's attitude to DD is confusing, perhaps he needs to speak to someone as to why this is.
In some respects she sounds like my DSD at the same age. She would kick up a fuss and throw epic tantrums if DH didn't take her out to soft play and would refuse to see him. She would also wake in the night and want to sleep in our bed and I'd get kicked all night. This was knocked on the head when I became pregnant as we couldn't risk me getting booted in the stomach. DH would contains tangly take her back to her own bed every time she woke. Within a couple of weeks (we only had her at weekends) she stopped waking and wanting in with us.
The only thing that worked with the other behaviour was being consistent with rules and consequences. 4 is still young but old enough for school and at school there are clear rules and consequences for breaking them, along with rewards for following them.
The hitting you has to stop and the best way would be for your DH to tell her that her behaviour is unacceptable and not cuddling her instead of you. That is giving her exactly what she wants and to her it says that she just has to behave badly to get what she wants.
The rules and consequences need to be worked out between you and your DH but need to come from him with your DSD otherwise you'll be seen as the evil step mother spoiling her fun.
You and your DH have to be on the same page wrt discipline just as you would if it were your and dh's child. A lot of non resident children get away with being badly behaved as the NRP feels guilty that they don't spend as much time with them. This was a big issue for my DH at first but once he realised it was contributing to dsd's bad behaviour and stopped giving in all the time her tantrums reduced dramatically.
crazykat you are so right, she knows that if she behaves badly she gets what she wants so she acts up a good majority of the time!! It is hard to like children like this let alone love them and I have tried so hard! God knows I have. Her mother asked us to buy her some new clothes just after DD was born even though she gets 180 a month in maintainence and we feed her and care for her the majority of the time, that is a big bug bear for me. I bought her some clothes under the proviso that they would come in for DD when DSD had grown out of them, I bought 4 pairs of leggings, 2 jumpers, 3 long sleeved t shirts, vests, pants and socks. Apart from the underwear I havent seen any of them since and I bought them with my money which could've gone towards nappies, clothes, food and milk for my DD and that p****s me off!! I am going to get DP to ask about the clothes as its been 8 months since Ive seen her in them, I feel sorry for my DD as she doesnt get much attention from either of us atm and I know that if evrything carries on as it is she will end up feeling very neglected and unloved by her father (I know how that feels myself) anyway thanks for all your advice so far
Prawn that is a huge worry, that your child will end up neglected because she forces herself into the lime light.
I think the situation is very difficult for dsd but she still needs to learn. when she breaks up your hugs, try shouting group hug! and hold her in tightly.
Try having long chats with her when you can, about anything, just make her feel she is listened to.
But most importantly discipline her when she hits or is rude with the naughty step or no sweets until she apologies and give lots of cuddles when she does. And correct every wrong statement from her mum calmly.
It is a worry but then another part of me thinks that maybe when she is older and can do more like DSD then he will bond with her more and take notice of her. I think he does love her but i am in no doubt as to who he loves more! Any way I will try and cross that bridge when I come to it. She is such a good baby and has slept through since 8/9 weeks old and because she isnt used to having a great deal of attention she is very placcid and can occupy herself a lot of the time, the only times she cries are when shes hungry or very tired. So its not like shes a dificult baby and shes very happy and smiley, as soon as she wakes up she has a big grin on her face, anyway we have two very difernt parenting styles but perphaps part of that is just down to the differnt situations of both daughters, I know DSD mother doesnt bother to reprimand her, she scratched someone on the face the other day in a pub full of people (I only found out because my friend was there and she told me) and her mum was shouting and bawling at the woman whose facee DSD had scratched because she had told DSD off so no wonder she behaves like it!!!
It will be interesting to see how your dd ends up though- my little cousins are 4 (girl) and 6 (boy). My girl cousin was very much like your dd when she was a baby/ until she was about 18 months, and her brother was very attention seeking and jealous of her- he would try and jump all over his parents when they were holding her and often hit her or grab toys off her as she got older. Then it seemed to reverse and now she will jump all over me, sing in my ears and try to manipulate me into playing with her, when I'm trying to play with him, and he will tell me its ok, and that he doesn't mind if I play with her.
With regards to the stuff your DsD is coming out with (Isobel's not my sister/my Daddy isn't Isobel's daddy) I would encourage some kind of family therapy.
If it is coming from DsD then she obviously feels very insecure. If this (and other stuff?) is coming from DsD mother then this needs to be nipped in the bud. Having a 3rd party involved will pull her (the mother) up on this. Either way, DsD gets some help.
Perhaps you and DH will be able to air your respective problems on neutral ground.
Just realized that DD is only 8 months. I think your DH prob loves her very much but at 8 months she won't be doing much and once she is walking and talking things will be very different for him, for all of you.
Ime dads are much more involved once DCs are able to do stuff with them and you are worrying unnecessarily.
I would get some expert advice for handling DSD, she is just little toot too, although she will appear big compared to DD, and it sounds as if she is just needs some sensible and consistent care from you and DH to counteract the confusing example she is being shown at home. Try books on childrearing if there is no counselling available.
I doubt the difference between your children is due to patenting. My 3 all have the same parents & are completely different in terms of bring able to occupy themselves, attention seeking, grizzlyness as babies, sleeping & co-sleeping.
She's only 4. She needs you to be consistent but also understanding & loving.
There shouldn't be any issue between your dh loving one child 'more' - both should be the same (even if one child is easier or needier).
The way I would deal with it is to sound completely disinterested whenever she comes out with all the stuff about mummy and daddy not loving her or whatever else. Just say "we all love you lots" and walk off and do something else. If she carries on then repeat it and walk off again. Make her know that you don't care what she says to try and play you off against each other because it won't work, it's literally boring. And give her lots of opportunities to help you on the farm as she's the big girl and it's her farm too. Blah blah. Make it fun for her so all this manipulation stuff becomes utterly dull for her.
I'd also not bother fighting about the food. Fish fingers and beans are cheap enough. Offer them to her and some of yours as well and again don't make an issue of it. Want fish fingers? Oh that's nice. If she makes a face about your dinner just ignore and carry on talking. If she chooses to eat some of yours just ignore and don't make an issue of it. Sometimes making a thing of something like that can create a bit of a battle ground as they know it winds you up so act completely Un bothered. You also want to make eating with you a positive experience for her - if fish fingers etc help then I really wouldn't worry about it.
I'm sure your dh does love the baby just as much. It's just babies are boring really. When they reach toddler stage they become so much more interesting. Especially when you already have an older child who needs a lot of attention.
I am remarried with an older child and a young toddler from two different dad's. (Toddler is my Dhs) and we have had our problems. You just have to make light of things as much as you can.
I think before you have experience of 4 year olds or older kids in general, you can put too high an expectation on their behaviour/ feelings etc.
I'm not saying excuse bad behaviour, but accept that it can happen and lay boundaries and enforce them. Also just try to imagine how she feels. You come on the scene take her Daddy away and then along comes a baby. Her own mother can't cope with it by the sounds of it. So how can a child of 4 cope with it without the correct support?
When you only have a small baby older children seem so old and grown up, but when your daughter is 4 you might realise how young they still are. I now realise this.
With regards to waking in the night my 5 year old does. He can't help it, he isn't being naughty. I dread to think what he'd be like in a different house without me if me and his Dad had separated. He spent the night in our bed last night. Doesn't happen often that he co sleeps so rather than be mad I cherished waking up next to his beautiful face. You'd probably feel the same about your own daughter.
Could your DSD be picking up on your resentment? I understand your issue with her mother. But it isn't her fault, poor love.
I completely understand that 4 years olds aren't going to be perfectly behaved all of the time but I think when kids push boundaries they need to learn how far it is acceptable to push them and when to stop. I don't think a 4 year old is capable of saying Isobel isn't my sister or my mummy loves me all of the time and you just love me sometimes (bearing in mind she was 3 when she was saying that. A lot of my friends who have visited have mentioned the difference in DSD behaviour when her dad is around- she acts up yet is like a completely different child with me because she knows I won't stand for it. One of my friends even said although DP is very good with DSD he acts more like a friend to her than a father. I'm trying my best but i d
I completely understand that 4 years olds aren't going to be perfectly behaved all of the time but I think when kids push boundaries they need to learn how far it is acceptable to push them and when to stop. I don't think a 4 year old is capable of saying Isobel isn't my sister or my mummy loves me all of the time and you just love me sometimes (bearing in mind she was 3 when she was saying that. A lot of my friends who have visited have mentioned the difference in DSD behaviour when her dad is around- she acts up yet is like a completely different child with me because she knows I won't stand for it. One of my friends even said although DP is very good with DSD he acts more like a friend to her than a father. I'm trying my best but i don't know how much l
Of course she acts differently with her father - she's desperate for his attention. My ds3 can be like that with me - presumably because he's a third child & competing with a severely disabled child for my attention. It's usually a sign of insecurity & has up be dealt with by consistency but also ensuring the child has lots of attention. I try to make sure ds3 has 1:1 time with me because he needs it (as shown by his behaviour). My ds3 is a lot older than 4 as well. It doesn't just magically go away.
I suspect your dsd needs lots of 1:1 time with her father. Within that time he should be consistent & expecting good behaviour - but you need to remember she's a 4 year old who has lost her dad & now has to share him with an adult who doesn't like her very much & who is worried about the attention he shows her versus her new half sibling.
Try & see it from her point of view. Her behaviour is typical attention seeking behaviour & as such cannot be dealt with purely by sanctions. She needs to be helped to feel more secure about her dad as well. That doesn't have to happen in response to bad behaviour but it has to happen somewhere.
Erm I never said I didn't like her very much!! She can be a very difficult time and she has not lost her dad!! She gets PLENTY of 1:1 time with her father and we keep her as involved as we can. You sound very presumptuous yet you offer no real advice regarding out situation really. She is constantly reminded that daddy loves her. I feed, wash, clothe and care for this child. I sit up with her on a night when she is ill and DP is tired. I take her for days out I help with homework so how dare you say I don like her very much!!! Get off your high horse
And I'm sure you would be concerned if your OH was favouring
And I'm sure you would be concerned if your OH was favouring one of your kids over another!
Agree prawny there's a massive difference between disliking a child and disliking behaviours.
My advice is lots of 1:1 time with her dad (& you not seeing it as being in competition with your baby), consistency & lots of attention for her before she misbehaves.
You didn't sound like you liked her very much in earlier posts. Apologies if I got that wrong. She sounds very much as is she is attention seeking for her dad though & I think to some extent that has to be lavished on her preferably before she plays up so it is not a reward for bad behaviour. If you focus on the bad behaviour & consequences rather than seeing the bigger picture I think you will continue to see bad behaviour. Advice based on my own experience of having a child who for whatever reason needs extra attention to feel secure. He specifically needs attention from me - not others - and he will therefore play up for me- not others - even though the attention he receives for playing up is negative. The only way to tackle it has been to seek out ways to give him a lot of extra attention before he misbehaves, coupled with talks about expectations & rewards when he complies.
You cannot dish out your time equally between children - they need different things at different times. When my younger ones were babies dh spent a lot of time with the older ones because they needed an adult full on not held back by a baby
Ds1 has always needed 1:1 care so always has full attention from one of us while the others have to share the other parent more.
I find it better to think about what each child needs - it changes at different ages but in the whole I would say a 4 year old needs more interactive attention than a baby. We tended to sort out the older ones first then think about the baby.
She is four - she has to live with the fact that her daddy has left and has a new family and her step mother doesn't even like her - i'll save my sympathy for the child. Did her dad leave her mother for you? What does it matter if he sleeps in with her for a few nights - so what if the mother co slept up til 2 - it sounds like the poor little thing needs a bit of comfort.
No he didn't leave her for me we met after they had split up. As I have said before I dislike her behaviour sometimes I do not dislike her!! I do more than most step mothers so why don't you shut your trap and take your shitty comments elsewhere "support forum" my arse!!!
I do everything I can to make sure she is well looked after. Most of you probably aren't even step parents because if you we're you wouldn't be making such stupid comments or even wasting your energy!
From your posts it sounds like you need to take a step back from the situation. Let your DH deal with his daughter and her behaviour. If you do everything for her - stop. Your DH should be doing a lot of what you say you do.
If it's getting to you so much, talk to your DH about how he can address her behaviour. For now I'd concentrate on yourself and your daughter.
4 is very young so a lot of things need to be taken in to account. She sounds very confused about her family situation and where exactly she slots in. This is something both her parents need to address.
I know but I can't help it. I just do it instinctively. If I didn't do what I do then it would never get done. DP is shockingly untidy. He doesn't do anything around the house, he doesn't even put his rubbish in the bin or flush the toilet. I have to take up a lot of slack otherwise she would be in unclean clothes and be generally unclean herself
Gosh, are you always this defensive? is that how you counter an argument usually?
I haven't read that you SAID you dislike her, its just that you have failed to say a nice word about her, which is really sad.
She is four, she wont understand that it is a difficult situation - because she is four. It sounds like her mother hadn't got over the split for whatever reason as she was crying to your DP about you being pregnant - there must have still been feeings for him. You have to put yourself in her shoes, you are being painted as the wicked step mother by her mother - she sees you as someone who has taken her daddy away, you are a threat to her. This is partly because of her mother and partly because you get to be with her daddy all the time, just as the new baby does. I guess it goes with the territory and I am the first to admit i could never be a step parent. I couldnt be a step parent becaue i couldnt love someone elses child no matter how hard i tried so i wouldn't do it as it wouldnt be fair on the child.
I am sorry if my post sounded harsh but you do really slag this little girl off (and her mother, who at some point your DP loved enough to make a child with, maybe you are still insecure about this - i would be).
Yes this is a support forum, but support doesn't mean always agree with the OP. Did you want people to come on here and say, oh yes, you poor thing, she sounds horrible and her fat mother sounds like a cunt as well. Good luck with the healthy eating, we eat healthily too, however it is difficult when your child goes from happily eating all the quinoa and cous cous you dish up to pushing away anything that isn't fish fingers and pasta. Don't let food become yet another battle ground, let her have what she wants for dinner - a fish finger never killed anyone yet, then introduce other healthy things as treats - if she doesn't have this at home then it will be treated as a novelty. If you force it on her, she will just rail against it.
All the adults in this little girls life need to walk a mile in her shoes for a little while because she doesn't know which way is up just now - it must be a big upheval for her to have a step-brother or sister come along who daddy lives with all the time, especially if her mother is being shitty about it.
But do feel free to tell me to shut up if you don't like what i have to say, as an open forum i will exercise my right to express my opinion, you don't have to read it
it sounds like part of your problems lie in your DP thinking that the parenting thing is your job, being harsh, she is his child, his responsibility - maybe that is where some of your resentment is coming from, the fact that he is leaving everything to you.
OP ..you seem to be confusing us being judgemental with just having a different viewpoint. Don't be so defensive..people are just offering advice based on what you have told us.You have an awful lot on your plate by the sounds of it..( lambs!!!!) But I think the best advice here is about constantly reinforcing how much she is loved, and not reacting to the playing up. A four year old is not capable of understanding the situation she's in so you can't judge her by her behaviour...it will pass.But you do need to be extra careful that you show equal affection to both girls...just as you would with any new addition and your DH needs to too.This is just a busy busy time and it's not the end of the world if she acts up.All 4 year olds do!
My advice remains, she is 4, she is playing up to seek attention from her father, this is entirely understandable given her situation & needs to be met by (a) consistent boundaries while she's with you (b) more attention from her father - & not obsessing over whether she's getting more attention than her baby sibling.
In your shoes I'd try to engineer a lot more time doing nice things with her father in the short term - no it's not always easy - but it is understandable that she is going to be insecure at the moment . Many older siblings find it hard enough dealing with a baby sibling when they still live with both parents - it's usual for some babyish behaviour & attention seeking to take place while they get used to the new situation - this can take a long time - even when they're seeing both parents full time.
It sounds like she needs more attention than you can give her at this incredibly busy season. Also, it sounds like you are doing most of the actual parenting here.
Could you hire a local teenager who loves playing with kids to give you a bit of help? You might be able to fine a young teen who would help you out for a couple of pounds an hour and be thrilled with the arrangement. (My daughter did something like this when she was 10-11, and the little girl absolutely adored her).
He wasn't happy with his partner for years before they split. He said that he thinks she trapped him by getting pregnant as she told him she couldn't have kids so they didn't need to use contraception but was secretly taking the pill for years although he said he never bought it up with her even after finding loads of pill packets. He left her a week before she announced she was pregnant and felt that it was the right thing to stand by her but said that ultimately he was miserable. And I've said that she is well behaved when its just her and me, we have fun, we go for walks, we read, we paint we do all sorts!! And I do enjoy her company when she's behaving. Everyone tells me how good I am with her AND how good I am for her. And I know about evil step mothers!! My step mother refused to let me see my dad when she was pregnant and I didn't meet my brother until he was 4 years old and that was the first time I'd seen my dad in nearly 5 years!! And that was at 14 years old with a step dad at home sexually abusing me and my haven for two days/nights a week taken away. I would never do that to a child I am trying to help her out
She's misbehaving around her father because she wants his attention. Ds3 is extraordinarily well behave at school, excellent with my parents & other grandparents until I walk in the door (& to a lesser extent dh). He misbehaves around me because he wants my attention. He behaves around everyone else because he isn't fussed about their attention & he's basically a nice kid.
The only way to deal with it long term is to be consistent, & try to increase security by giving lots if positive attention before misbehaving occurs. There's no quick fix ime.
It sounds like your DP needs to pay attention to her when she is behaving herself and either ignore or discipline when she is misbehaving. This will make her feel more secure which will also improve her behaviour.
I have never had step-children but I can imagine how hard it is.
I'm sorry but I get defensive because I've had possibly the most horrendous step parents ( unfortunately like a lot of kids) and I do not see myself as one of them so I try so hard to seek solutions to problems. I do a lot but I have to!
Excuse me for asking this but was your own daughter with him planned? I ask because you've said that he feels like his ex trapped him into pregnancy, that the pregnancy was unplanned. I'm wondering if a lot of the resentment from his ex and the subsequent parroting that seems to come from their dd is to do with this - the ex is angry that he effectively left her with a baby he never wanted and then went on to have a "wanted" one relatively quickly afterwards.
Maybe his behaviour towards his dd now reflects some sort of guilt on his part, trying to over compensate perhaps.
You sound like you're trying to do your best. 4 year olds are bloody hard work at the best of times regardless of whether you are the parent or the step parent.
No she wasn't planned. My ex wanted me to have an abortion because, and I quote he was worried about the impact it would have on DSD. Thank god we didn't is all I can say to that. My theory was that because he didn't love his ex when DSD was born he only had l
No she wasn't planned. My ex wanted me to have an abortion because, and I quote he was worried about the impact it would have on DSD. Thank god we didn't is all I can say to that. My theory was that because he didn't love his ex when DSD was born he only had love for dsd whereas it was different when DD was born. He per
No she wasn't planned. My ex wanted me to have an abortion because, and I quote he was worried about the impact it would have on DSD. Thank god we didn't is all I can say to that. My theory was that because he didn't love his ex when DSD was born he only had love for dsd whereas it was different when DD was born. He perp gaps felt pushed out because I couldn't give him as much attention which wouldn't have mattered with DSD as he didn't love her mother. Very badly explained there
Im confused, your ex wanted you to have an abortion? How is your DP with your DD? I think he wanted you to have an abortion becaue of the affect it was going to have on HIM, to be fair. He sounds like a peice of work.
My honest opinion is that your dp needs to give everyone more attention and tlc! it sounds like you are spreading yourself too thin in every direction and he is maybe depressed - has that been looked into?
If dsd is lovely when dp isn't around then it's clear that she feels stable and secure with you as you are consistent. But when he is there she feels the need to compete, and actually you probably all are subconsciously competing - you want his attention as much as she does for you and dd and you want him to do some things in the house, even if it's just flushing the loo to start with.
If he is depressed you need to point it out then he needs to seek help, it's not an excuse to neglect your family life If you're not tying to help yourself.
You need to make a chores allocation chart and insist he sticks to it.
You need to leave him in a room with dsd and just walk out and go to the shops, so he has to give her time.
Try to stick to 7 or 8 o clock as her bed time and do some chores and watch a film together before going to bed yourselves.
I think some comments are unfair, if you have a problem it's the bad bits that you feel compelled to mention, having to list her good points so we don't think you hate her is just silly and Irrelevant to the topic. I assumed it was the behaviour you had a problem with and wanted advice on it. If you hated her you'd just want advice on how to keep her away from you.
Thank you alita. I think you are on the same page as me and know from a previous thread that your situation is very similar to mine. Today is the first day in a long time that it has rained so poor DP is outside on his own while I stay inside with the girls, the house is a tip and I thought I would finally get a day of doing some washing, hoovering etc but the power god have decided to turn the electric off from 10-12 this morning and no
Thank you alita. I think you are on the same page as me and know from a previous thread that your situation is very similar to mine. Today is the first day in a long time that it has rained so poor DP is outside on his own while I stay inside with the girls, the house is a tip and I thought I would finally get a day of doing some washing, hoovering etc but the power god have decided to turn the electric off from 10-12 this morning and no one bothered to tell me so not particularly impressed any way both girls very well behaved so far, touch wood and DD decided to start crawling this morning!! So the travel cot has gone up and she is sat happily playing away in there
She is only four. She might seem very big for you father your daughter was born, but four is ver, very, very tiny. She does not compete with you or your daughter, and what you call manipulative is just a snapshot of her reading her own world. Don´t read any grown up stuff into it.
Show her understanding, make her feel safe, and the so called bad behavior will go away after a while. In the nicest way, ou sound very protective about your DD, possessive of her father and negative about her mother. The girl will pick up on that.
As both a farmer, step-child and mother I would recommend you to ease up, and give her a lovely time at the farm the four days she has been "unloaded" there. A farm can be a magnificent place for a child. Let it be so for her as well, without all this negativity around her.
Not possessive of her father!! Intact he is more possessive over me. And it isn't just four days she has been here all holidays and is going back on Sunday night. I never say anything untoward about her mother in front of her and as I have stated about 10 times before in this post I know it isn't her fault. The manipulation comes from her mother and she has no other example to follow. My DP doesn't discipline her but is happy for me to take up the child care. It won't just go away. I am good with her as I understand she is still tiny, but if we can't handle her now how will we handle her when she's older and in her teens? She doesn't like DP holding DD and I know that's natural. We have made sure that she was always centre of attention even after DD was born. And there is definitely something amiss with regards to DD and DP's relationship and of course that is a worry for me! What parent wouldn't be worried???
I think 4 year olds are quite capable of being manipulative... even if it is a learned behaviour.
many are much more intelligent than they are given credit for.
I don't know if it was this thread or another but I've mentioned my cousin before, she's 4, and Is incredibly socially clever, she has been manipulating since she was about 2. It started with crocodile tears if she wanted something and these days she will get all the kids she plays with to do exactly what she wants, but she isn't just bossy, she learns all about them so she can manipulate. When she sees me she will try to get me to play with her if I'm playing with her brother by jumping all over my brother, giving him kisses and saying look alita :p and knowing her parents I don't think she's learnt it off them!
DSD is incredibly clever for her age. A very bright little girl. They know how to manipulate at that age, from being tiny babies they know how to manipulate. And she said to me "if mummy doesn't buy me my magazine I cry like this (fake cry) and she buys me it' to be fair her fake cry does sound a lot like a real cry the only way I can tell is if there are tears!!
haha prawny, dsd was caught practicing her crying face for mummy in the mirror at about 7 :p
Join the discussion
Please login first.