Step dad-Step daughter relations(22 Posts)
Hi, I am mum to an 11y/o girl and 3 y/o boy. My husband and I have been married nearly 3 years and he has been in our lives for 7. He is dad to the boy, step dad to the girl. The problem I have is with him and my daughter.
To be perfectly honest, I'm at my wits end with the both of them.
My daughter has always been the demanding sort. Needs attention, company and conversational input virtually all the time, she doesn't sleep or eat great (please don't beat down me on this, I hate it as much as anyone) and is now in the beginnings of puberty. I'm the opposite, I enjoy reading and quiet, I don't feel the need to talk all the damn time!
My husband is a man child, general winder upper and annoying sod if he feels he gets a good reaction. Which he gets from my daughter in spades.
So he pursues it. Until she cries. I ask him to stop. I shout. I try to explain what its like being a hormonal young woman. But he just wont stop laughing at her reaction, which makes her worse understandably.
I'm getting to the point where I feel like I am going to have to give my husband the ultimatum of stop it or leave. I cant have him making my daughter cry for sport.
How do go I about trying to sort this out, because I am at a total loss? I love my husband, aside from the above problem and that he's rather lazy at times, he's a lovely caring guy and when he's not being a total turd, he and my daughter actually get along very well.
He'll say he's only messing and its character building, and when she's older she'll be able to hold her own. But all I think it that when she's older she's going to say to me that I chose him over her and that at times made her life a bit of a misery. I think I'd agree with her.
Please. Someone. What do I do?
He is bullying her, tormenting her for sport for his own amusement.
Time for a serious discussion with him.
It isn't character building at all, it is worrying that he makes her cry then laughs at her distress.
I hate wind up merchants, they aren't funny at all.
He sounds like a nasty prick. I general come at these things saying talk about it, work on it etc but he sounds like he doesn't listen so family counciling prob won't help either.
You have my sympathy. My otherwise perfect husband likes a wind up and it's annoying as hell. Luckily it's me that gets it though and not my sensitive dd.
I'm afraid you need to have serious words with your husband, this is not on at all. Your daughter is likely to have issues if she has to put up with this throughout her teen years. And you might bear the brunt of the severe mood swings that will be along shortly.
Good luck hope you can sort this out.
It is bordering on abuse, what would his reaction be if you told him stop it or leave?
I really do feel its gone too far now and something needs to happen to bring about a change.
Being close to the problem it can be hard to see another way, I appreciate all your comments and I shall be having serious words with my husband over this tomorrow.
What an absolute bastard.
You love him? Why on earth would you love a grown man who gets a kick out of making your child cry?
Bet he doesn't do it to his son, huh?
If you let things continue your daughter could harbour resentment you didn't step in. It's bullying, its emotional abuse. Kids are very perceptive too, she'll be aware, as will your son, that she's the only child singled out for it.
He's a nasty spiteful bullying bastard who gets kicks out of bullying little girls. Why haven't you kicked him out yet? It's clearly been going on for a while. Stop enabling the emotional abuse of your daughter and get rid of him.
He's a bully. Time for ultimatums. You need to protect your daughter. She'll start to resent or hate you if you don't. I'm speaking as someone who once had an abusive stepfather.....my mother took a very long time to deal with it.
Listen, to the people having a bit of a go at me now. I'm here for help and advice, not a kicking!
I know its not right, its why I wrote the post. Shall I just crawl back under my rock and not ask for help because I will be judged?!
As I have said, they usually get along very well. When he's not being unreasonable (which by the way is 99% of the time), he is a typical caring parent. My daughter actually says that he is more of a dad to her than her own has been, so its not like I am forcing them to co-exist for my own benefit. Just this one problem I need to sort.
And it is a big problem.
Is he approachable? Would he take it on board do you think. Hopefully he will listen.
You really don't just have one problem to sort. A man who thinks it's funny to torment a little girl is a man who needs professional help and I don't say that lightly. No amount of ultimatums are going to work here. What you describe sounds predatory. I know that's a very loaded word but who the hell enjoys making a girl cry? The only way forward for me would be to separate and go to family counselling. The fact that she says he is more of a father to her makes this even more fucked up. You can't sort this. You can protect your daughter. Lettting her grow up thinking that is what love looks like from a man is recipe for disaster. Have my first LTB.
he's emotionally abusing your daughter ffs and you're more worried about your feelings being hurt on here?
It doesn't matter how many times he's 'nice' when he's responsible for tormenting her to the point of tears why can't you see that?
How can you seriously think this just needs 'sorting out'? Put your daughter first and kick the prick out.
That 1% of time he terrorises her will be enough to cause her emotional issues in later life. Your husband is a fucking cunt. There's only one decision you can make in this scenario. Don't think emotional abuse is just words or that he doesn't mean anything by it. As someone emotionally abused as a child and still going through the rollercoaster you have to lose him. Get rid.
Oh, and I don't think pp have been unkind or given you a kicking either.
Does he think of himself as a parent yo her? He's acting more like an annoying brother. He needs parenting classes.
If he is a good guy can you take it from the point of view of setting an example for his son? So he needs to be able to treat women and girls respectfully in order that his son does too?
Have you sat him down and explained how distressing this is to both you and dd? When things are calm and not when they're hectic and mad?
Or can you talk to him about his experiences growing up? Was he bullied? Does he want his daughter to feel bullied in her own home?
Is there some part of the father daughter relationship that does thrive on banter or pranking? Does she wind him up too? I'm wondering if it is a "unique aspect" of their relationship he is continuing out of fear of not having a connection with her as she grows?
Does he have siblings? What ages?
Don't LTB ... but please start communicating better as a couple and as a family. And agree to respect each other more which includes stopping a behaviour when asked to.
Tell him your loyalty as a dm overrules your loyalty as a wife and he is making your life a sided one with you and him opposites - if he pushes you to choose you would have to be a parent first.
He needs to grow up. .
Perhaps all sit down together a family meeting type thing and bring it up with them both. Let her say how she feels and of course your feelings do matter too. He either may not realise just how upsetting his tormenting is and will stop it, or he will continue to do it. At that point if it does carry on then it really is bullying and ultimately it's up to you what you do then. Sending hugs to you it doesn't sound a very nice situation to be in.
You can't allow him to keep torturing her like this. This is awful and it will ruin her. Your husband is an asshole.
Hi op, just wanted to say, I have a step dad like this and when I was growing up we had big problems. He would drive me insane, but this teasing sessions would turn into massive arguments because I 'couldn't take a joke'. To be honest, I don't actually know what advice to give you because although he was a pain in the arse and my teenage relationship with him was less than smooth, I adore him now and he still does the same thing and I still want to throttle him sometimes, but I also find him funnier now and as an adult I can give it back so it changes the dynamics. Also I can see with hindsight, hormones definitely had a big part to play in my reaction our situation.
If I were the mother in the situation, I think I'd sit him down away from DD and explain that he can't keep doing this because although me and my dad turned out ok, it easily could have gone the other way. If he is a decent person, he should listen and understand that if it's getting to the point where she's crying, he isn't funny. It's not funny for anyone and his son is likely to grow up thinking it's ok to treat his sister that way too. And resentment between siblings is so easily cultivated in this sort of situation.
Just be honest, that his sense of humour is a lot for your DD to take and him taking pleasure and amusement from making her cry is not on.
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