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Finally cracked with Disney dad and his goody goody son

(189 Posts)
quest12 Tue 19-Feb-13 22:42:09

My husband and I have a dd aged 7 we also have his son my stepson over regularly, now since she was toddling around he has tormented her made her cry but been sly about it as in he does it when we're not in the room then denies it, so I turned detective an started leaving the room but listening in so I cud make sure what my dd was telling me was right, and it was - however if I tell him off he takes his sons side and results in a 3 way argument with dss eventually saying if I'm taking dds side then he's not coming down anymore so my hubby begs me to relent and I do to keep the peace.

However yesterday we were at the local swimming pool me and hubby taking turns to go in steam room, as I'm coming out and hubs is going in I seen him elbow her in the head on purpose - she screamed crying and he stood there laughing in her face, then he looked up seen me and said "we were playing catch and cause she couldn't catch the ball she's crying" now I've been calm for 6 years but I exploded calling him a liar and evil for laughing in her face, hubby seen this an came out took dss to one side then came back saying "we're going now you've just told him off for nothing and he's upset now" in the car on way to drop dss off I told him what I'd seen and dd told her dad what happened but he lied and hubby believes him.

I've told him I'm putting up with it no longer and he says I can't tell dss off as he will stop visiting, but to me the happiness and stability of my dd is most important. I think it's an extreme case of Disney dad and I've had enuf he now thinks he can do what he likes as his dad will always take his side. What can I do ban him from coming? Or leave my hubby?

Kyrptonite Sun 10-Mar-13 09:19:53

He's just a boy. He will hurt his sister and I would put money on her provoking him at times too. You obviously actively dislike him so its no wonder he is taking it out on your daughter who is his opinion has the stable family that he doesn't and sees more of his dad then he does.

Calling any child evil is not acceptable. You sound nasty and jealous of the boy (speaking as someone who's stepmum was exactly like this) and if you had called my son evil I'd be fucking furious.

seeker Sun 10-Mar-13 09:26:12

"but I exploded calling him a liar and evil "

WitchOfEndor Sun 10-Mar-13 09:33:04

I think you are doing the right thing, you are protecting your child and teaching your DSS that it isn't ok to hurt other children. Put it in a letter to your DH if he won't listen.

Stripedpyjamas Sun 10-Mar-13 09:45:10

Hi OP, I feel for you. I've been nothing but understanding to spoilt dsc, always taking back seat to them and their wants. Catering to a child's needs is a different matter and obviously dss mum is not doing that, his dad is a disney dad and also not fulfilling the child's need for boundaries and opportunities to rid self of aggression and inner turmoil. Perhaps he could take his son footballing or something? My dh and I are now in counseling and am not sure if its going to help. The abuse I had to put up with for years has taken its toll.
I used to feel very upset dh did not want more children with me. Thankfully I have ds of my own and realize any more dc would never have measured up to first set he had with ex. Why, I don't know. False pride perhaps? I now feel dh wanted a stable relationship mostly for dsc, not because I was the love of his life. I was to be the better mother for them, preferably exclusively, my own ds never got close the attention/presents/praise....his get. It's a bind.Good luck.

Kyrptonite Sun 10-Mar-13 09:45:16

You do realise that although he may well be bullying your DD, you are bullying him. Exploding in the face of a child is not acceptable. If he had genuinely put your DDs life at risk it would be understandable but kids argue. He has a sister who he is most probably a bit jealous of and a stepmum who seems to despise him and wants to ban him from the house.

Talk to your husband. Tell him you're not happy and you want to come up with some reasonable sanctions if either of your DCs are hurting each other.

racmun Sun 10-Mar-13 09:52:15

OMG I could have written your post myself. Step son is 9 my ds is 2.5. Ss deliberately kicked him over yesterday- a huge row ensued and I'm still furious now!

I need to go to the top of a mountain and screeeeeeeeeeeeeam.
So so so hard. I have started though to report everything to dh and insist that he deals with it.

And it's Mother's Day!!!!

flurp Sun 10-Mar-13 10:02:45

Oh sorry! I felt bad that I had said he was evil blush I had forgotten that the OP said that to him!
I didn't want her getting flamed for something I had said.
As you were .......

TheonlyWayisGerard Sun 10-Mar-13 10:16:33

I feel sorry for the boy tbh. You obviously can't stand him, which I expect he's picked up on and is probably acting up to reflect this. Siblings will nearly always fight. My brothers were terrible. Yes, what he did wasn't nice and your OH needs to listen to you and your DD and discipline his son, but I think screaming in his face and calling him evil was an horrendous thing to do to a child.
I don't think having 'slanging matches' with his mother is helpful either, I expect she's angry about what you did to him, a child!
I'm not blaming you for everything, your OH and the boys mother need to look at things diplomatically and not automatically believe their son, but tbh, I would be outraged if you had reacted like that to my son. Kids fight, kids deny things that have blatantly happened, it's what they do. How old is DSS out of interest?

indahouse Sun 10-Mar-13 10:22:33

It must be soo hard for the stepchildren to see their half siblings in a happy family with dad around all the time when they themselves are unwanted strangers in their own father's house. Even a Saint would feel the urge to stick an elbow out sometimes.

But I am sorry you have to go through this. It is a really difficult situation.

clam Sun 10-Mar-13 11:12:42

There are two issues here. One is that the lad is behaving badly and you feel that the behaviour is being condoned by his dad, which will make things even worse. The second is that it is (understandably) making you feel very negative towards the boy - and your husband - which is now coming out in a quite destructive way.

I actually think that it was wrong of you to call him a liar and evil even if he is. I think you should find a way of apologising for that bit, BUT make it clear that you saw what happened (in other words you know he was fibbing/minimising the truth)and you won't tolerate that sort of behaviour in future.

Petal02 Mon 11-Mar-13 16:52:22

Quest - are you OK? Can you update us? Did DSS come for the weekend, or not? I'm really, really hoping you didn't apologise.

mumandboys123 Mon 11-Mar-13 18:01:22

The reason I asked 'how would you feel if someone called your child evil' is for the OP to reflect a bit on what happened. If I called one of my students 'evil' (and some of 'em deserve it, believe me!), the parents would do their nut and I would likely face some kind of disciplinary action. If I marched over to a child in my care in a swimming pool in public and called them evil (which is what the OP seems to be suggesting is what happened) then the parents would have reason to be doubly mad and demand I was disciplined. It's simply not acceptable.

For me, step parents take on a role not unlike that of a teacher - as a parent you are handing the most precious thing in the world over to another person who you had no hand in choosing as 'suitable' and you have to trust that person do do the right thing by your child at all times. That includes treating them with respect and dealing with any disciplinary issues that may arise in a firm but fair way. If you think it unacceptable a teacher behaves in this way then in most cases, it's probably the case that it's also unreasonable for a step parent.

None of that excuses the OP's partner, however, who is clearly struggling with boundaries and not wanting to face up to what his child may be doing.

allnewtaketwo Mon 11-Mar-13 18:39:10

It's nothing like being a teacher for gods sake. As a teacher it makes not one jot if a difference to your family or your life whether they're behavioural development is good, bad or indifferent. You don't have to put up with any consequences and at 3.30 or whatever you leave them behind, money in pocket so to speak. As long as you teach the syllabus, it doesn't matter to you if they go home and smash someone's head in.

Petal02 Mon 11-Mar-13 18:49:07

Excellent post Allnew. Teacher's don't take their pupils with them, nor do they have their home-lives rocked by their bad behaviour.

Maybe the OP's DSS does feel resentful that he's only with his Dad sometimes, whereas the OP's daughter is there all the time - but none of this is the daughter's fault, and why should the OP watch her child being picked on by an older boy, who gets away with all sorts just because his parents are separated? And as for the OP's DH - don't get me started in him; aren't men supposed to be protective of their daughters? Clearly any desire to protect the child is over ridden by his Disney tendancies. And as we all know, Disney thinking generally flies in the face of common sense!

mumandboys123 Mon 11-Mar-13 18:52:34

it's very similar. I'm sorry you don't see it that way. I have tried to explain. And yes, it does matter to me if one of my students smashes someone's head in during the time I am with them at least - because that would be as much my responsibility as his/hers. Behavioural development is incredibly important in the classroom and affects everything, just as it affects your homelife if a step child misbehaves.

I suppose then it's fine to verbally attack a child in a public place and call him/her names? Would you be happy for me to do that to your child if he/she was caught pushing my child whilst we're out swimming?

clam Mon 11-Mar-13 19:01:35

I'm with you, mumandboys

Petal02 Mon 11-Mar-13 19:14:30

But when you're in a pupil/teacher situation, it's unlikely you'll witness your own child being hit by another, so it's a less emotive situation. I understand the point you make about a teacher being "in loco parentis" in rather the same way as a step parent - however the consequences of a classroom altercation do not affect your marriage and your own children, in the ways that a step family fall-out does.

mumandboys123 Mon 11-Mar-13 19:27:27

I understand that point, Petal. What I am asking is whether or not the action of admonishing a child in a public place to the point of calling him 'evil' is acceptable? if you won't accept this from your children's teachers or another adult in a 'parental' relationship with your child, is it OK to say it, even in the heat of the moment? in this situation that is being described, is it any different to a teacher calling a child 'evil' in front of a whole class for having done something that they shouldn't and the teacher happened to have had their fill and flipped out at that moment?

If you think it acceptable, then we fundamentally disagree and there is little more to be said. But answering this question is being avoided by everyone who appears on the 'side' of the OP and that's important from my perspective because whilst the OP has every right to be fed up and upset and angry and everything else, her own behaviour has helped to make the situation what it is today (probably more so than that of the child) and that needs addressing. At least from where I'm standing. I am not suggesting she is in the wrong - I can see her point - but how she has dealt with it is very wrong and I'm trying to see if she can see if from that point of view. If she can't, fine. But if she can, then perhaps we can help find ways of sorting everything out so her marriage isn't threatened which right now it is.

Petal02 Mon 11-Mar-13 20:11:26

I think even the OP would admit she probably flipped when she saw her DSS hurting her daughter at the pool. But she's had years of provocation, years of watching her little girl being picked on by this boy, while her husband (who is also the girls father) conveniently turns a blind eye to indulge the step son.

Don't under estimate how maddening a Disney dad and his un-parented offspring can be. And if your daughter is suffering because of this combination, then it would take a saint not to lose it sometimes.

eskimofriends Mon 11-Mar-13 20:17:09

I do sympathise with OP. Step parenting is incredibly difficult (as most of us here know only too well). And it would be unfair to flame her without seeing the bigger picture. What strikes me, however, is that if OP's DSS is badly behaved, we should remember that children copy the behaviour of the adults around them. So OP, her DH and his ExW are all role models for DSS. OP says that she exploded and shouted at DSS. OP's DH shouts over her and refuses to listen. And OP and DSS's mum had a slanging match over the phone - which DSS quite possibly overheard. If the adults around him deal with conflict by screaming and shouting - is it any surprise that DSS has not learnt any other way of resolving his own anger?

mumandboys123 Mon 11-Mar-13 20:18:17

and again, teachers have years of provocation but you wouldn't expect them to behave in this way towards a child in their care!

it is pretty normal for siblings to quarrel, hit each other, be sneaky about it and tell lies about it. It is also pretty normal that parents don't agree on how it should be dealt with whether or not they live together and all the complications that go with having step parents in the picture as well. I do agree that the father needs to accept some blame for what has happened here but so does the OP. What they need is a way forward they can both agree on - which I guess is the hard part.

Petal02 Mon 11-Mar-13 20:26:58

To be honest I think it's the OP's DP who is to blame here. He continually failed to parent his son, to the detriment of his small daughter, and has driven his wife to the point where she, understandably, loses her temper.

This happens so often in step families - the father refuses to parent, the new wife finds it really hard, nothing changes, and when she finally snaps she is the one who takes the blame.

The OP's anger is a symptom of the problem, not the cause of the problem.

allnewtaketwo Mon 11-Mar-13 21:21:13

Mumandboys are you on drugs? Just because I don't agree with your teacher analogy you ask if I would be happy for you to push my child? hmm. What on earth is wrong with you?

Stripedpyjamas Tue 12-Mar-13 07:27:40

Would just like to comment on the lying part. My ds is 2 years older than dss and although dss got to share all ds toys, pc and games etc etc it was never enough. The anger a dsc feels at another child spending more time with a parent seems immeasurable. If there was a skirmish dss would always lie he was picked on or tell half truths to get my ds into trouble, even when the adults had witnessed the incident. There was never any logic to explain his behaviour. Disney dad never said a thing, at worst though would try to mildly bully my ds on behalf of dss to get even password to ds pc! Although there are 5 pc in the house. Only my stepping back and insistence on proper parenting by dh has calmed situation over the years. And yes, I'm a teacher too. I see provocation a mile off so feel better prepared for it. And yes, I'd prefer not to deal with this at home too, ... It's exhausting.

flurp Tue 12-Mar-13 12:36:34

The resentment must be enormous for a stepchild seeing their father with a new full time family which he or she is only a part of at weekends/holidays.
BUT it is down to the adults (ie the father) to teach the child to deal with that resentment in a positive way.
My DSS resents the fact that now he shares toys with my children. There is no point buying two copies of the same game or dvd or whatever it is he wants but we have made a house rule that all toys are shared by all the dc so there is no squabbling and he has worked out that it means they can have more stuff if its shared. Also my DSD resented me terribly as the other female in her dad's life and went ultra clingy when we first got together. We let her be clingy for a while then had to tell her that she had to actually let her older brother near her dad sometimes and she has gradually eased up as her confidence grew.
Its part of parenting to show them how to deal with their feelings, not to turn a blind eye to bad behaviour because you don't want to rock the boat.

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