Have I handled this really badly?(8 Posts)
DP and I live together, have done for three years. He has been separated from the mother of DSS and DSD for seven years.
My issue is that I'm feeling something really irrational and I'd like to know how you ladies deal with it.
My DSis has recently left her marriage and is living with me until she can sort herself out. She has somewhere to go so that DP's daughter can still come and stay every weekend as usual.
However, DP told me yesterday that he doesn't want to tell DSD that someone has been in "her" room all week.
This comes from mentioning blindly one weekend that my parents were coming to stay and DSD saying "well, not in MY room they're not".
Why do I feel so averse to the fact that DP and myself have to clear all "evidence" of my sister out of the room before DSD arrives on her weekly stay?
Of course, I actually wouldn't have said anything anyway. The last thing I want to do is cause upset to DSD, I like her very much and we get on well.
So, why am I so upset by this when I would have said nothing anyway?
Help! DP is "shocked and upset" that I would "make his daughter feel unwelcome in her home" (nothing like that was said or implied I promise).
If she was your DD and someone needed her room you may be inclined to make her share her room for a short time or move - its not ideal but life happens.
Its funny how it seems to trend that DH/DP's seem to fling around the whole if it was your kids it would be different when you do not agree with them (mine used to until I said that I was that bored of hearing it and if he thought I was that bad to his kids perhaps he would feel better seeing them at his exes instead, needless to say that shut him up and was many years ago).
My own DSD has said this when relatives wanted to stay at ours - I told her her options were to share with them come into our room or go back to her moms late at night and we would pick her up early (only lives 5 mins drive.
My DSS shares with my DS every weekend and I have opinted out to her and DH that the room is not a shrine to her when she is not at ours (it is decorated for her and only has her stuff in it (that is robably what worries her most about people mooching about in their) but on odd occasion we have needed it we have told her in advance and told her that I would put on spare sheets so they are not sleeping in her sheets and her room would be put back to normal before she arrived. Now she is far less of a diva and would probably help me strip and prepare for them
In almost all "normal" families, younger children make way out of their rooms if there's no guest bedroom when other people come to stay. That's children who live in the house 24/7 - and while some might grumble a bit in the way kids do (alternatively, they get really excited at the prospect of a lilo in mum and dad's room) most do not regard the occasion as some great affront to THEIR room or THEIR bed. Certainly - IME, and on very odd occasions, e.g. when my kids have been at scout camp for example, and someone has come to stay in their room there's been no issue at all and while I feel it's polite to tell the child what's happening they don't actually have a choice in the matter. It's an issue of courtesy and necessity - and indeed, when push comes to shove, and very rarely when there are lots of guests, my kids have also seen their parents give up their bed for others.
SD's room shouldn't be a shrine as Needaholiday states. Neither should she be tiptoed around and allowed to be "selfish" about "her" room. Yes, it's her room when she needs it - and your sister staying temporarily hasn't altered that - but she also needs to understand that families share, and help each other out, and that can sometimes mean that other people will use your room. It's certainly not a bloody issue to be "shocked and upset" about - that's pathetic on DP's part and he's doing his daughter no favours at all by bringing her up to be so precious. It's nothing to do with being made "unwelcome" as the current arrangement sounds as if she's as welcome as she ever was so he's being ridiculous. However ... what would he do, say at Xmas, if you had his or your parents over at the same time as SD ? In many families the child would certainly be asked (told) to make way for the grandparents and would have to "rough it" on a camp bed or whatever. That's not about making her feel unwanted - it's about consideration for older people who wouldn't be able to cope with a temporary bed/sofa or simply about showing courtesy to adult guests however old they were.
We take the attitude that the DSC are to be "asked" before their rooms are used by visitors when they're not around. But they are not allowed to say no!!! They have tried to say no, and DP has told them that there's no option - it is our house and if visitors need the room we're not putting them in the living room whilst bedrooms sit there empty. They moan but generally accept it. I treat my own DCs exactly the same - their main home is here but if we have visitors when they're not here, the visitors use their rooms.
I do think it is polite to mention it to them first though - so they have a chance to clear any private stuff up out the way. And I usually make sure to change the bedding and put theirs back on (washed) afterwards. Their room also usually gets a good hover and clean, which I wouldn't do for them otherwise.
In your situation - as you've told DSD in advance that her room will be used - I'd be inclined to go along with your DP's plan of hiding the evidence, but in future it would be much better to be upfront about it and tell her that the room is needed when she's not there so can she make sure it's clear to use.
Thanks for replies guys. Dsd is 13 and very easy to get on with. It's not an issue with her, my issue is more to do with having to tiptoe around her is that makes sense. It's my home too and I think DP is making it appear that his daughter is more important than my family. Why can't I stop feeling angry about this?
...probably because he does actually feel his dd is more important than your family?
And naturally this makes you angry.
Sorry if I'm sounding a bit glib, but ... Been there. Still am.
And I doubt anything is ever going to change that. Don't get me wrong, I've not accepted the situation. It became terribly obvious (and I would have thought embarrassingly so) when dss 12 moved in and asked for dsis room, whose visits are rare. Did he get it because it would have been fair? Hell no! Dss is getting sliding doors put up for privacy in the 'playroom' he and ds share during the day (ds 15 has own bedroom, but must walk through dss room to get to his). Dh will never let go of dd shrine, in case she visits... (She hates us, now 16, her visits will dry up pretty soon).
Good luck with this one. Sorry again for sounding like a glum cow.
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