stepson and my toddler(9 Posts)
Please help me. I'm worried my ten year old stepson will hurt my 2 year old. My ss visits on weekends he is very rude and obnoxious. He has toddler tantrums and swears at me if he doesn't get his own way. He is very big and strong for his age and recently he has developed a temper with my 2year old. Up to now it has only been shouting which is bad enough we can not disipline him at all. When we try he denies he has done anything wrong and crys and swears until he is taken home. His mother just laughs or says she will have a word then treats him to burger and xbox. This weekend my son has been left with a bruise to his cheek. I have a nasty feeling it is down to my ss. Can i really ban my ss from his fathers home? I can't see an alternative when i fear for my own sons safety. Im also expecting my second child so could do without getting stressed. Has anyone got any advice. Dont mind if u have kids or stepkids both or neither. I just need helpful suggestions.
First of all, what has your husband said about it?
My other half knows what his son is like we have both tried everything we can think of with him. He thinks it may be better if he takes him out for a few hours on a saturday instead. But i think this may isolate my ss. I want him to have a good and healthy relationship with his half siblings. Going out with dad all to him self i think could be seen as a reward for bad behaviour.
Your own son must come first. Whatever the reasons behind it. If he has been shouting at a 2-year-old and especially if you have reason to believe it has been physical, then yes, you are entitled to say that your home must be a safe environment for your toddler.
I think it would be good for your SS to have the Saturday morning 'alone time' with his dad - I would say the same if he was not a stepkid - I think it is important for all kids to have one-on-one time with each parent. BUT that has to be in balance and it should never be presented as a reward; I would also strongly suggest that your DH make sure their 'alone time' is spent doing normal sorts of things, not special treats and ever-increasing activities! They could go for a walk or a ball game, or even just running errands together - it should be about the time to interact with dad as he would if they were together in a household, not about your husband entertaining him.
I don't think, though, that this is the whole solution, in fact it may be a completely separate issue! Your SS also needs to know that his behaviour is not acceptable, so DH needs to be giving him consequences when he acts out with anyone in the family. He is old enough to understand, and he is old enough for it to be something you and DH address within your home, regardless of how his mum deals or doesn't deal with it. Have you tried things like reward charts? What punishments does DH give him now when he acts up, swearing and being loud?
If your DH can't resolve it through ordinary means, and the behaviour continues to escalate, then by all means you can insist on other arrangements - but that would mean perhaps something quite extreme, like DH having to spend weekends in a hotel or at least agreeing to keep the children separate on SS's visits, with your DH being the one to make the adjustments rather than you or the small children being made to feel they cannot be safe at home.
It's possible that the bad behaviour is stemming from not feeling like he has time with his Dad too though. It is a massive adjustment for a child. I don't think that it should be viewed as a reward for him to have some one on one time with his Dad.
Whilst I appreciate that your SSs bad behaviour is unacceptable I really think that you have to try every avenue here. Try giving him time alone with his father, he still is a very young boy and may be feeling a bit pushed out or left behind, it's hard for a child to know their place in a new family. Banning him from your home isn't really an option IMHO. I know it's hard but you need to make sure that your DC are not alone with SS for the time being and you need to monitor this. How good is your 2 years old's speech? Is he able to tell you how he got hurt?
Have you or your husband considered classes for your SS. Possibly something some kind of martial arts? You would be surprised at how many will help with anger control.
FWIW a friends child and my older brother both went through pretty bad aggressive phases around this age, both were put down to an early testosterone surge. Could this possibly be the case?
I want him to have a good and healthy relationship with his half siblings.
That's understandable, but it sounds like it isn't happening now, so you need to maybe focus on 'damage control' - a two-year-old being shouted at and perhaps worse by a much older, bigger child - that's awful and you wouldn't leave your toddler with anyone outside the family who did so.
The SS's behaviour needs to be addressed before they can begin to have the kind of sibling relationship you are hoping for.
Good advice from HudYer. I think you and your DH need jointly to commit to not leaving the DC together unsupervised, which I know will be difficult. Time for DSS alone with his dad may be positive for him, I would try it.
How is DSS's life outside your home? Life at his DM's? School?
Thanks for the advice. We got my ss into martial arts which he did for about a year but doesn't enjoy it anynore. That was the sport he stuck at the longest. We have tried many from football clubs swimming. I even built him a little boxing gym. Its just computer games and tv. We limit these at home and thats when problems begin. Will keep a closer check on things this weekend. We do have a problem in that unless my ss gets to go somewhere he wants he refuses to visit. I know he is basically a spoilt little brat who thinks he calls the shots...actually he does call the shots. We don't get the backing we need from his mother. Early testosterone surge is almost a certainty now but think he has always had and aggressive streak. He's a big lad for ten 5 foot tall and pretty chunky.
don't take him home when he's naughty, if he wants to go home he will kick off so you take him and he will feel you just give up on him or are unable to discipline him and will get away with his behaviour. take your son away from him and tell him he needs to go and calm down and no one will speak to him until he is calm. maybe have a chat about the risk to your son with his mum, she might see the severity of the situation then. If he gets pocket money from you then if she gets angry and breaks anything take money away. 1 or 2 proper punishments will stop the behaviour. (hopefully) and I know it's hard to punish effectively when you only have him at week ends.
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