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to feel unable to cope with DSD at late stages of pregnancy?

(20 Posts)
tiredfatandneedmorecurry Fri 21-Oct-11 08:02:09

My DSD is 11. She can be great but she can also be a real handful. She finds it hard to control herself and if something upsets or angers her she spirals out of control and starts screaming and shouting and becomes hysterical, sometimes demanding to be taken home and phoning her mum in hysterics, if my DP is out then the phone is passed to me and it's just awkward and difficult. She is quite mean to my 9 year old DS sometimes when she thinks noone is listening although he too can be mean to her, it often ends up in them fighting.

I also have a 14 year old DD who can be a great help but can also be a stroppy nightmare teenager, and a 3 year old with DP who can be high maintenance. I am 38 weeks pregnant and exhausted and have been diagnosed with high blood pressure.

DP treats his time with DSD, usually every weekend, as sacred. If anything gets in the way he goes mad. I once mixed up some holiday dates which meant that she might not be able to come on holiday with us and he caused an awful scene at a family dinner, suggesting other people change their holiday plans to accommodate his time with DSD. If I ever suggest that I can't cope with all of the children on my own I am treated like an evil stepmother who is denying him time with his DSD.

Basically he is working tonight. He has said before that will try to make sure on evenings that he is working that DSD comes the next morning as I've had all of them before and although sometimes it's been fine sometimes it's been awful and I've been left in tears (just recently, I always get v tired at this stage of pregnancy). Anyway he texted me last night to say - Can you manage with DSD tomorrow night (so that he gets to spend time with her on Sat morning). It feels as if he is putting his time with her even before how I feel. If I say no I will be treated like a horrible stepmother who is denying him time with DSD. DSD also generally likes coming here so I'll be made to feel I'm denying her too. But there is the chance that she will kick off, she can be quite unpredictable, and that stresses me. She could stay with her mum who has no other kids, doesn't work, and can easily look after her.

Am I being a horrible stepmother? I will end up saying yes anyway as I always do, but aibu to feel that at this stage of my pregnancy it would be nice if someone put my wellbeing first? I also know that once the baby is born I will be expected to take her when he is working - 5 children on my own to look after, the thought makes me nervous.

Please don't flame me too much, I do try to be a good stepmum.

OchAyeTheNooPal Fri 21-Oct-11 08:15:40

Not going to flame you at all. i think you sound shattered! Your DP needs to consider your needs as well as his DD though. He needs to realise what you can manage for the next wee while and what's wrong with his DD staying at her mum's on the Friday and then he can go get her early on Saturday morning?

Have you Tried telling him how you feel?

Pudding2be Fri 21-Oct-11 08:18:30

Yanbu. Tell him to grow up and realise your health and his unborn child is a priority too. If she wasn't such a madam you would have no issue with her staying

She needs to learn there are consequences to her actions

If he starts the emotional blackmail give him this - my friend nearly died after childbirth due to pre eclampsia developing into HELLP (sp) disease. WWHD then? You musnt let him treat you like that, put yourself and your baby first

PhilipJFry Fri 21-Oct-11 08:23:08

I'm going to be honest, I don't think the main problem is really your stepdaughter, it's this:

"If I ever suggest that I can't cope with all of the children on my own I am treated like an evil stepmother who is denying him time with his DSD."

Your partner is causing a great deal of your stress with his behaviour and uncompromising attitude that leaves you feeling unable to express yourself and discuss this issue. His attitude to you bringing up difficulties is shit. You are not unreasonable to feel unable to cope and it's wrong that you don't feel like you can even talk about this without being painted as "evil stepmother". This is the problem and will probably continue to be one until he stops seeing this issue as so black and white.

fuzzysnout Fri 21-Oct-11 08:25:37

I think you do need to talk to your DP and he needs to be a bit more understanding that you have a lot to cope with at the moment. From DSDs point of view, your difficulties are not her fault and it's understandable that she is acting up at times and testing you, although it doesn't make it any easier to cope with. You are obviously trying hard to be a good stepmum despite being knackered & I don't think that anyone could say YABU for wanting an easier time of it, however with a new baby on the way DSD will no doubt be feeling more left out, despite your best efforts and it would be good to try to make her as much part of the family as you can. You sound lovely, but she may well be acting up for dads attention if she is not really feeling like she belongs with you. Could DD help out by trying to spend a bit of time with her? Good luck it's not easy.

holyShmoley Fri 21-Oct-11 08:33:54

no flaming, and of course it's tough, but having her is the right thing to do. What's your DP's relationship with the Mum like?

pink4ever Fri 21-Oct-11 08:34:42

YABU for moaning about looking after the kids because you are pregnant-what do you think the rest of us do?. YANBU to expect your dh to help especially as you near the end of your pregnancy and when you have a newborn.

However there are no medals for martyrdom Im afraid-say no to your dh. Tell him he has to stop acting like an arse and take you into consideration.

pink4ever Fri 21-Oct-11 08:35:50

Sorry also meant to say was it really nessacary to mention that dsd mum has no other children and doesnt work?-tad bitchy.

DoMeDon Fri 21-Oct-11 08:36:27

I don't think anyone is being U - just not very understanding. This is how I read it: Your DP is a committed loving father from the sound of it - a good thing. He is unwaivering and unkind about your inability to cope well under the added stress - not a good thing. You recognise your tiredness and want to be a good stepmum - a good thing. You have an inability to assert yourself and deal with DP's negative feelings - not a good thing.

Personally I think you should have DSD. When you are a blended family each child needs to be as welcome and accepted as the others. TBH if you think coping with 5DC is hard, that should have been considered more before the new baby. DSD was already here and part of the family.

(I am not trying to upset you but I think that is the honest reality of the situation - sorry)

fluffythevampirestabber Fri 21-Oct-11 08:42:15

I don't think anyone is being unreasonable, I think everyone is coming at the situation from their own point of view, each of which taken on their own and in isolation is reasonable. If that makes sense.

Your DSD is part of your family. Your DP wants to be an involved Dad and see her as much as possible. He is probably also very aware of not making her feel left out with your kids being there, you and he's child together and the new baby coming.

You are knackered and are running after hordes of kids, and it's an extra burden you don't need.

But at the end of the day, she's a part of your family and she should be there on Friday night.

But you should talk to your DP and tell him he needs to do more to help because you're struggling.

StewieGriffinsMom Fri 21-Oct-11 08:45:28

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

slavetofilofax Fri 21-Oct-11 08:49:03

YABU, it's not your dsd's fault that you are pregnant, and she should be welcomed at all times in her Fathers home regardless of how you feel.

Unless you are planning to ship your own kids out to the GP's or whatever that night, you can't not be welcoming to your dsd. That would just be mean.

However, you can tell your dh that you want some rest and get him to take all the children out on Saturday morning.

Your dsd is as much a part of your family as your own children, especially if you are having a baby with her Father. Your DH does the right thing by treating his time with his dd as sacred - how could you expect anything less, holiday plans or not?

Lucyinthepie Fri 21-Oct-11 08:49:12

Your DP has another child to love on the way, he needs to sit down and think about that. As usual we've got people saying don't be an evil step mother, suck it up, you MUST have the darling step child. I don't agree, every pregnancy is different so nobody can decide that you can physically be expected to put up with this. Anyway, you're getting very tired and upset about it and, sometimes, the "darling step mother" has to get some consideration.
Really, I'd just print this thread off and show him. Talking to him doesn't seem to work. He needs to realise that, just at this time in your life, you are tired and worn down and finding it hard to deal with this child's tantrums. He needs to come up with a plan to help. Like arranging his working life so that, just for a while, he doesn't work when his daughter is with you for the evening. I think he needs to also speak to his daughter and start taking some responsibility for disciplining her, 11 years old is quite old enough for her to understand and for the adults around her to stop bowing down when she behaves so badly.
Put it this way, soon you will have a tiny baby. Is he going to expect you to look after his daughter while she screams her way through an evening when you have a little two week old baby to care for?

Lucyinthepie Fri 21-Oct-11 08:50:17

p.s. I'm not saying that the step daughter shouldn't be welcome in her father's home. I'm saying that at this important time in his relationship with his wife, he needs to step up to the mark and provide some physical support.

ballstoit Fri 21-Oct-11 08:53:40

I agree with DoMeDon and fluffy...DSD is as much a part of the family as your own DC. Of course she should come as planned, although your DP should be at home to help as soon as he can be.

If my ex told me he couldn't have my DC as planned because his GF was pregnant and finding it difficult to cope, I'd be pretty peed off. If you choose to have more DC, you choose to get on with it in my view. It wouldn't be mine or my DC's problem. Just because she doesn't work or have other DC doesn't mean she can be expected to have her plans cancelled at the last minute because you're finding it hard.

What about your older DC's other parent? how often does he have them?

eslteacher Fri 21-Oct-11 08:54:32

No flaming here either. I really feel for you! It's not an easy situation though...I think blended family stuff is generally complicated and has to be carefully negotiated and worked out.

While it's commendable that your DP is such a committed father to his daughter, he is also a husband to you and either a stepfather or father (can't work out which) to your other children plus to his unborn child. I think you and he needs to talk, without any conflict, to work out some basic principles for how you will balance all your various blended family stuff. With 5 kids it's not going to be easy! Talking about this is a must IMO. He simply HAS to talk about it reasonably with you, he's being quite childish if he refuses to do so.

Seems reasonable for him to pick her up on Saturday morning instead of leaving her with you on Friday night, in this situation.

fluffythevampirestabber Fri 21-Oct-11 09:02:24

Thing is, I'm not a stepmother but I am separated and I share care with my ex. And, looking at it from his point of view, I don't work, so why shouldn't my ex change childcare plans? I mean when the kids aren't with me I don't have anything else to do so why shouldn't I look after them?

But you know what - I have a life. I make plans based on the fact that he's supposed to have them on a specific date. I also have uni to go to, so I have study and coursework to do and I do that most on the weekends the kids aren't here.

We had a situation this week, which I posted about on here, where I got tickets to see a Live n Deadly Roadshow this weekend, to cut a long story short, he asked me to swap weekends so I could take the kids to see Live n Deadly. I made plans around that and he then changed his mind later.

I am having the kids as originally planned (if you're with me) but it has buggered up the plans I made when he swapped stuff.

And I know your situation is different OP because you're living with your DP and you have a family, but I didn't like the "she could stay with her mum who has no other kids and could quite easily look after her"

Her mum is entitled to make plans and have a life based on the arrangements which are in place.

MamaChoo Fri 21-Oct-11 09:09:58

With the best will in the world, however accommodating and perfect you are the rest of the time, the final month of pregnancy can be a killer for mind-blowing tiredness and I do think everyone, all the children, your DP and yes, your DSD's mother (by having her a night you usually have her) could just do a little bit more to help rather than run you into the ground. Tell DD to look after DS2, and get DP home early, he can take them all out when DSD turns uo tomorrow.

tiredfatandneedmorecurry Fri 21-Oct-11 10:43:11

Thanks for taking the time to respond everyone. I do completely recognise that this is DSD's home, I am just asking for a bit of extra consideration in these final weeks and am very sad that my DP refuses to give me it, he's so dogged in his determination to have DSD here, sometimes he doesn't even seem to care if she actually wants to be herself. It's something I need to stand up to him about as my blood pressure IS high and he needs to take it seriously that I have been told to rest as much as I can until the birth.

All I meant about DSD's mum was that it would be feasible for her to perhaps have DSD tonight unless of course she has made other plans which I completely accept.

Thanks for supportive posts.x

Fresh01 Fri 21-Oct-11 10:59:03

Can you try and make this evening as easy as possible for yourself. Get some pizzas and popcorn from the supermarket maybe a new Halloween DVD (there seem to be loads on special) and make it a kind of movie night. May be of limited interest to 3 year old but they probably go to bed a bit earlier. At least you might get to sit with them whilst they watch the movie?

Also can you say to your DP that you are shattered so could he do the breakfast shift on sat am so you can have a long lie? I am 31 weeks with no 4 so appreciate how tired you feel but sometimes DH's need it highlighted to them.

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