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DD's relationship with SM, how to get it back on track

(4 Posts)
ParadeWave Thu 14-Jul-11 15:42:29

I need some advice as my DD (11yo) is now feeling uncomfortable about the prospect of spending time with her SM.

Don't worry, this isn't going to be a SM bashing thread, i am a SM too.

Basically my exh and i had a row, we hadn't been in when my dd had been supposed to talk to him, i genuinely forgot about it, when i realised she called him and there was alot of him shouting down the phone at her and her grovelling for forgiveness, she was upset about this. I text him the next day to apologise for not being home and that this was my fault not our dd's, i also said i didn't like the way he had spoken to her and that she was upset and reminding him that there have been plenty of times he hasn't been able to speak to her (we live a long way away from him) and hasn't given her notice and she hasn't gone nuts at him. Angry texts followed this.

My dd went on fb that afternoon, her SM had put something on there about being angry at someone and not wanting to keep her mouth shut like she had done for the past 8 years, my dd showed it to me and asked me if i thought it was about her because of the time frame, i told her of course it wasn't so she then said if it wasn't about her, it was obviously about me, got upset and defriended her SM. I text my exh about it and said i didn't think that sort of thing should be where our dd could read it and she was upset, i got a angry reply about freedom of speech! dd spoke to her dad about it, he at first lied and said it wasn't about me and then backtracked after dd saw her Sm posting about how pathetic i was for getting dd to defriend her, and said the same things to her about freedom of speech.

DD is due to go down and stay with them soon and she is feeling uncomfortable about this, she's overly protective of me and it's hurt her that her sm feels this way about me. She says she doesn't know how to be when she's with them. I don't want her to feel like this. DD's sm is a genuinely nice woman, she's been nothing but kind and caring to my dd and my dd really does love her. I have always been very thankful dd has had a seemingly easy time of the step-family dynamic on his and my side.

Is it my place to step in and try and help this situation? if so, how do i do that? would you want your sc's mum to help or would you feel she was being interferring?

LB1982 Thu 14-Jul-11 16:54:45

Bloomin Facebook. Causes no end of problems!! I don't understand why people put these annoying cryptic status updates! In fact I do know - it's so they get attention.

It sounds like something farely trivial to me, which will hopefully blow over in a very short space of time.

If the SM is as lovely as you say, I'm sure she'll be feeling really embarrassed of her silly status update and is probably as worried as you are about your dd coming to stay and will hopefully have a word with her and apologise.

I'm sorry I have no actual advice. I like the saying 'things are never as bad as they seem' and I think this is a classic case of this.

Your dd does sound very lucky to have such a stable upbringing (despite this). I wish I could say the same about my dsc - I constantly worry that my spur of the moment spats will effect them when something upsets me. It's just a case of us SM's staying out of it and I think that what your dd's sm should have done in this scenario.

lateatwork Thu 14-Jul-11 17:04:44

oh. tricky one as I think this one could blow up quite a lot. SM is obviously deeply upset about things that have been building up beyond the incident you describe (thus the reference to 8 years....) so I would try to calm the situation.

The step mum should NOT be disrespectful to you in front on DD. The SM should know that this is only going to breed resentment in DD. There are better places to vent frustration than facebook and it was the wrong choice. I still dont think she understands this and neither does your ex. I think its probably right that DD 'defriends' her for a while. I dont think pointing this out again (right now) is going to have any impact though. SM was wrong to vent on FB.

I dont think I would apprach the SM. I would approach your daughter to try and reassure her that you can look after yourself. I would say something along the lines of 'adults dont always agree with each other on everything. I understand you love me very much, but whilst I am upset about this, it isnt the end of the world, and SM and I will get over it.'

ParadeWave Thu 14-Jul-11 20:52:34

Thank you both for your replies.

LB - Fb is the work of the devil, i agree. I hope it is something trivial, i hope they will both talk to her about it, dd is a sensitive soul, she dwells on things so if it doesn't get spoken about, she wont be able to sort it through in her own head. I just hate the thought of her being there and being down, i've done alot of work with dd this past year, she's always found it hard to talk to her Dad, so i've been her voice which has often caused friction, so she's had to learn to speak her mind and tell him when things are bothering her. She should be so excited about going down, seeing her Dad and sm and her little brother and sister. She is very lucky, i'm sorry you don't have such an easy time of it with your dsc, step-parenting is a difficult and thankless role at times.

Lateatwork - I've been wracking my brains trying to think what i have done wrong, things were awkward when exh and i split, neither of us behaved well and it's been a massive learning curve, it didn't help that their relationship started the day dd and i moved out, added pressure and issues to deal with, but, i never directed any of what was going on at the sm, i used to see sm about all the time and she was always really nice to me, she's a 'say as you see it' kind of woman and i hoped she would have said something. I am not the biggest fan of my sc's mum, but, that is what my best friend is for, that and reading the steps board on here and feeling like there are other women struggling and that you're not a monster. That sounds like a good thing to say to my dd, reassurance would seem to be the key and hope they can sort things out when they have a prolonged period of time together.

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