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I have tried for months not to post this question, but I can't help myself any longer!!!

(133 Posts)
Enfyshedd Fri 19-Jul-13 07:50:11

AIBU to be getting fed up with DSS2 complaining that DD is "bullying" him?

For clarity's sake, DSS2 is 7yo, DD is nearly 14mo. Yes, 14 months.

DSS2 has a really annoying to me habit of sticking his face in hers all the time. I mean, less than 4 inches nose to nose close, then he complains that she pulls his hair, pinches his face or pushes him away. I tell him all the time to stop doing it because she will pull, pinch or push his face away when he does it.

He will take books that she's looking at out of her hands, then moan that she snatched the book off him (I'm talking about board & bath books bought specifically for DD). Another thing is him building towers with her stacking cups or mega blocks, then complaining that she keeps knocking them down/pulling them apart

He is currently lying across the sofa and complaining that DD is sitting on his head after he got on the sofa after her and slid himself down between the back of the sofa and DD (I'm acting as a barrier to stop DD's kamikaze dives off the sofa). This is for the second time in 20mins and on both occasions I've told DSS2 that he's the one who's put himself there and DP has told him to stop messing about and get off the sofa if he's going to scream "she's standing on my head!!!" when she was there to start with.

DSS2 was the only person in the house to complain that DD wouldn't bite him when she started teething (when she was happily gnawing on my nipples during BFing, DP's fingers and, inexplicably, DSS1's nose), and would try and shove his just been playing in the dirt outside and has to be reminded everytime to wash his hands after going to the toilet fingers in her mouth. Then when she obliged him by finally biting his finger (DP & I were distracted), he played merry hell for 2 bloody days about how much it hurt.

I'm fed up of the bloody whinging! She's a baby, he's 7yo and a big one who fits into 8 to 9 yo clothes at that, he should be capable of removing himself from or preventing these situations. He cries more than DD does FFS...

Sorry for making you poor souls who opened this thread read it, but it's really getting on my tits after months of this. Does anyone else have experience of an older sibling who will moan about a baby doing completly normal baby behaviour?

ANormalOne Fri 19-Jul-13 07:54:51

Sounds like jealousy to me.

YellowDinosaur Fri 19-Jul-13 07:57:42

Maybe he's struggling with her arrival and is doing this for attention?

I don't have personal experience of this but one of ds1's friends really struggled (and I think continues to do so) when his sister arrived. He was nearly 7 at the time and she's now nearly 1. He was super excited before but I think the reality of how much this changes your life at this age shouldn't be underestimated.

This doesn't mean you should put up with him behaving like this as its clearly unacceptable but if you or his Dad work on giving him more positive attention maybe that would help? I'm sure you're doing your best and its hard as small babies need shook much of your time but this might help.

BonaDrag Fri 19-Jul-13 07:57:56

There is a strong possibility that the seven year old child knows you don't like him (and from your post it's evident that you don't).

He could be doing what he is doing to get attention. Maybe he feels sidelined. I don't blame him at all.

And also, he's seven.

YellowDinosaur Fri 19-Jul-13 07:58:36

Shook = so

Cross posted ANormalOne - exactly.

floatyflo Fri 19-Jul-13 08:00:39

As above. Sounds like jealously and the feeling of being pushed out. You and your dp need to make sure he is feeling secure and has good attention from you both. Sounds as though he may be becoming overlooked.

And a big one who fits into 8 to 9 yo clothes at that ?? Nice op hmm

floatyflo Fri 19-Jul-13 08:02:10

Agreed BonaDrag

Enfyshedd Fri 19-Jul-13 08:03:06

I meant big as in tall - DSS2 is a lean thing.

His behaviour is just so wearing. DP tries to give him and his big bro as much attention as they always had.

Got to go - will be back later.

JustPanicking Fri 19-Jul-13 08:03:33

You talk about him as though you are speaking about a much older child. He is 7 fgs! It is normal for him to be seeking attention. Perhaps giving him some responsibilty and time alone with his parent would be a more effective method of dealing with it.

OhTiger Fri 19-Jul-13 08:04:16

He's 7. He's still a baby too.

exoticfruits Fri 19-Jul-13 08:05:30

Are you giving him any special privileges or responsibilities for being the eldest?

NotYoMomma Fri 19-Jul-13 08:06:15

7 years old is THE MOST tedious age for any child ime, stepchild or not

celestialbows Fri 19-Jul-13 08:06:44

He so obviously feels put out! Probably still reacting to his parents' split as well as feeling sidelined by a new baby. He needs to be shown he's still special and important.
As a bit of fun why not show him the 'charlie bit me' video on YouTube, it should make him laugh and see that all babies are a bit bitey if you put your finger in their mouth!
Then I think he needs one to one time with both of you, if you don't want to do that then his dad definitely should as often as possible and then do family stuff together where the baby is not the focus for a change.
Poor boy, I remember when my nephew was born there is a classic photo of his older brother (7) in the hospital room looking absolutely gutted. He is still too young to control his primal feelings of jealousy, give him a chance.

exoticfruits Fri 19-Jul-13 08:07:27

Cross posted with JustPanicking. Does he get a later bedtime, time to do things alone with you and DP? Do you leave the baby with DP and go out alone with him?

floatyflo Fri 19-Jul-13 08:07:42

Don't care what you meant. T'was an unnecessary dig at a seven year old child. Very big of you Op.

awaywego1 Fri 19-Jul-13 08:08:02

It must be very annoying and draining, but it sounds like he's feeling a bit left out which is perpetuated by your frustration with his behaviour. Could you try and spend some time with him on his own, reassure him that he is still your baby too, acknowledge that baby's are annoying etc but just give him some extra attention for a while and see if he lets go of the moaning.

NotYoMomma Fri 19-Jul-13 08:08:11

seven is not a baby.

people will see he is your step son and start the whole pushed out evil step mother thing with you but as long as he is still included as normal etc then there is no need for this behaviour.

you and dh just need to be consistent with it.

do you have a good relationship with his mum?

aftermay Fri 19-Jul-13 08:08:54

I'm afraid I also think you're being harsh with your 7 year old, at least in the way you write about him. He wants more attention. He's 7 and that's normal.

pianodoodle Fri 19-Jul-13 08:09:24

My friend had a similar thing with her boys although the eldest was only 4 and her youngest one and a half.

I think the eldest was just playing up for attention but I know she had days where she felt really bad that she seemed to be telling him off constantly sad

It didn't last that long and they're both really well behaved boys but yeah it drove her a bit mad for a while.

I think the more he needs to be told off the more "unfair" it all seems to him which creates a vicious circle.

Try setting some time aside just for the eldest on his own and see if that helps?

exoticfruits Fri 19-Jul-13 08:10:54

I missed the fact he was DSS and therefore you have to work even harder at including him. I think that you are missing the fact that he is a very young child himself. He is feeling pushed out.

ButThereAgain Fri 19-Jul-13 08:11:12

His behaviour sounds pretty normal, though of course very wearing.

Do you try to make some time when it is just you and the 7 yo together doing something nice? You say his dad is trying to spend as much time with him as before, but are you?

Agree with others that your post sounds as if you just don't like him. I'm sure that would make him anxious and prone to misbehave.

YourHandInMyHand Fri 19-Jul-13 08:11:21

He sounds jealous and attention seeking, pretty normal for a 7 year old with a new baby to compete with!

I've been a step mum with a baby of my own and I know it's hard but it really reads as if you dislike him.

Maybe there needs to be some general house rules eg we sit up nicely on the sofa, we give each other space, we wash our hands after the toilet and playing outside, that kind of thing. A lot of the situations you describe could be easily avoided by you or dad removing the baby/sitting between them holding the book and reading it to both of them/ telling him to go wash his hands. Is his dad actively parenting him and giving him positive discipline and boundaries??

exoticfruits Fri 19-Jul-13 08:14:15

I think the problem lies in that you say that DP is trying to give him and his brother as much attention as possible. How much are you giving them? How often does DP get the baby while you do something with them?
I think that he is reacting to the fact that his sister is the favoured member of the family.

pianodoodle Fri 19-Jul-13 08:15:29

Just realised he is a step son. It shouldn't make a difference as to how you treat him obviously but it might make a difference to him and make the adjustment for him that bit more difficult so I'd tend to go a bit easier with him for that reason too x

ComposHat Fri 19-Jul-13 08:16:18

He almost certainly feels pushed put and second best now you jave a child of your own.I know step parenting is tough but reading between the lines, i think he had a point.

It doesn't seem you like him very much at all and if he sees love and attention showered on his half sister (who in your eyes can seem to do no wrong) he's going to feel upset and act accordingly.

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