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Issue - Sharing a gift (computer) with the stepbrother

(71 Posts)
ElliesPhotography Thu 14-Jan-16 20:18:10


now what I do. My son (10) got a nice laptop for christmas from his real dad. I bought the sims 4 game for this laptop for him and he loves it. My partner son (8) wants to play the sims 4 on my son's computer, even though I bought him the Sims 3 for the x-box (there is no sims 4 available). The issue is that the small boy is requiring to play on my sons computer like they are sharing the computer equally. Now in the evening, I was busy doing some photoshop lessons with my son on the computer and my partner politely asked me to give a go to his son on the computer because he is going to bed soon. He said he promised his son he will be able to play there before bed.

I find it quite unfair and don't feel very comfortable about how it is especially because when my partners son gets something, its his primarily and my son can play only when it is free to play. My partner always comes up with a stupid excuse that his son comes for 4 days a week so my son has 3 days a week to play on his own, but I dont find that a valid reason anyway.

Please share your thoughts.

BlueCalicoBlue Thu 14-Jan-16 21:24:04

If it is your sons laptop he should not have to share it.

Calmly explain to your DP that it is your sons, he is happy to lend it occasionally but it is not up to your DP to promise his DS that he can use it. Especially as you are using it for education.

Bananasinpyjamas1 Thu 14-Jan-16 21:27:21

The rule in our house is that and Wii, Xbox and games are shared equally, no matter who bought it, step or others. But laptops are personal and it's up to the child.

ElliesPhotography Thu 14-Jan-16 21:38:46

It's just that Sims game the little stepson wants to play there, he does not want to use the laptop for anything else. Its just I really dont like fact when my son is busy on his laptop and gets pressured by my partner to give a turn to the small brother. I just want some respect, but my partner always has various great logical reasons about sharing so at the end I am the bad one who is not suitable to live in a blended family;) (that's what he says if he doesnt get his way with me.)

Floralnomad Thu 14-Jan-16 21:45:17

It's your sons and the step brother only gets to play when your son says he can - end of . Your partner is being very unreasonable because at the end of the day he is just ensuring that his son gets it all his own way which is what you should point out to him .

swingofthings Fri 15-Jan-16 07:12:06

It is the same issues between two siblings. My view is that when you give a gift to someone, it becomes theirs and therefore you can't force them to share it. However, I think it is part of teaching them the values of empathy to discuss how it impacts on others who don't have the same luck to own the same thing.

What I would do is discuss this with your son and ask if he would be willing to share for x amount of time per day after he had a go, and if he is, then this time is made clear with the other child. If he isn't willing to share with the other child, then I would state that in that case, it is fair not to play on the computer whilst step-brother is present and to play something different together. He will still all the rest of the time to do so.

I think the main cause of conflict in these instances is the wait without knowing when, so avoiding this should make it much easier.

MTPurse Fri 15-Jan-16 07:20:27

Tell your dp to go and buy his son a laptop and the sims 4 if he wants to play it. It is not fair on your ds to make him share it when he is busy using it.
It is this sort of behaviour from your dp which will cause resentment between the two boys and cause future problems.

My ds is 10 and my dss is 8 so I know exactly where you are coming from, Whatever one child gets, the other gets the same, I know it sounds bonkers but they have an xbox each, a tablet each and a laptop each. They play the same games and sit in the same room playing each other online (weirdos) but it does stop any resentment between the two.

This is up to your dp to fix not your ds.

RidersOnTheStorm Fri 15-Jan-16 07:25:09

Agree with everyone else. Your DH has no right to promise his DS that he can use something that belongs to someone else.

LetThereBeCupcakes Fri 15-Jan-16 07:31:37

Do you generally stick to age ratings? Sims 4 is a 12+ so can you say not appropriate for an 8 YO? You may have trouble arguing that when he can see the 10YO playing it though!

tribpot Fri 15-Jan-16 07:31:46

Agreed, laptops are not a shared resource in the same way as an Xbox or similar. Particularly not when it's a gift from the other parent, who clearly bought it for his son's benefit.

You need to get a second laptop and copy of the game. When I say 'you', depending on how blended this family is, I mean your DP. If your ds' dad is likely to keep buying big gifts like this, however, you might need to establish a principle as this is always hard to balance in blended families where there is an income disparity.

Berthatydfil Fri 15-Jan-16 07:33:25

Your partner should not be promising his ds a go on the laptop. His ds only wants it to play the sims game but your ds uses it for other things as well - eg you were using it with him on photoshop when he asked and he could need to use it for school work. It's not like a gaming console.
So I would tell your partner that if your son is using the laptop for non gaming purposes then he will not stop and let dss " have a go" until he has finished what he is doing and if that's after dss bedtime then tough, however if he is playing sims on it dss can ask to use it for his own game but ds won't be expected to stop immediately and he can say no. After all it is his property snd he shouldn't feel like he has to give it up. If the laptop isn't in use or immediately needed then dss can ask and as long as ds is ok he can be allowed a certain length of time to play.
As your partner - if the neighbours said he liked his car and wanted to have a drive would he just let him on the basis that he saw dp drive it and it wasn't fair because neighbour wanted it. I suggest he will say if course he wouldn't hand his priority over to the neighbour just because he wanted to use it so what's the difference with your ds laptop ?

Berthatydfil Fri 15-Jan-16 07:35:40

Property not priority

MTPurse Fri 15-Jan-16 07:50:57

Just another thought Op, Does your dp have a laptop? Is he willing to 'share' it with his ds or is it too precious to him to allow an 8yo to use it to play games?

ProbablyMe Fri 15-Jan-16 08:02:27

My 4 boys and 2 DSDs don't have to share something that is theirs unless they want to. If i e bought something between them that would be different. I do encourage them to let their siblings - step or otherwise - have a turn as it's the nice thing to do but they don't have to share equally if it's theirs.

timelytess Fri 15-Jan-16 08:08:45

Say no. It belongs to the one boy, from his dad, he has the right to keep it to himself.

WhoGivesAFlying Fri 15-Jan-16 10:01:06

I would point out that your some doesn't play with Dss things at Dss house. The laptop is your sons and not your dp's to decide who uses it

WhoGivesAFlying Fri 15-Jan-16 10:02:03

Your *son

MeridianB Fri 15-Jan-16 11:37:11

Going against the grain a little on some of the issues here..

It sounds like DSS asked his dad instead of asking your DS. Your DH was wrong to promise him and should have told him to ask your DS.

It's inevitable that kids/boys will want to play the latest game and if is the only way to play it then I can understand the interest. It will probably be a novelty until the latest x-box game arrives but..... could your son be prepared to give DSS a bit of access in the evening? Obviously it won't always be possible if DS is doing homework etc.

Generally I agree that laptops are different to x-box and wii etc.

Is this symptomatic of a bigger picture of your DH putting his DSS first though?

ElliesPhotography Fri 15-Jan-16 12:18:03

Thanks everybody for the insights, helped a lot! We have 2 other laptops in the household but its not possible to play the Sims 4 on any of them, we would have to pay another £30 for the game to be able to play so that's out of the window. Also my partner said his small son does not need his own laptop.

So now. I really support sharing, so what I will do it to tell that the small boy can play on my sons laptop WHEN MY SON IS NOT BUSY THERE.

MeridianB you got the issue: "Is this symptomatic of a bigger picture of your DH putting his DSS first though?" Thats the issue that my partner wants to comfort his son while here so all this "gifts ownership" goes out of window. Yes is is applied when it is a gift his son has. And then to cover it up, he comes with those logical excuses like - my son is here only 4 days a week so let him to have a turn etc etc, or like yesterday "give him a turn then you can play when he is in bed". My son has an open heart and shares and offers him, but it hurts him deep inside that the little boy gets his way especially when using my sons gift. Does anybody have an experience with this?

Thank you all xx

ElliesPhotography Fri 15-Jan-16 12:19:17

MeridianB I meant you got the issue right haha, Im just typing too fastsmile

ElliesPhotography Fri 15-Jan-16 12:24:46

And also what my partner said yesterday - that the Sims 4 game on the laptop is a game just as other games we have on x-box so they should share the game equally.

Yes but what about the laptop the game is on? Thats my sons. And anyway I bought that Sims 4 for my son as a gift for christmas. The small boy got the Sims 3 for x-box from Christmas from me. But thats obviously not good enough for him.

ElinoristhenewEnid Fri 15-Jan-16 15:09:40

I thought I recognised you OP - 'youngest dss using xbox all morning and your ds not allowed a turn' - you have had on-going problems with your DP before - saw your posts from July and October last year. I think you were advised to think about leaving DP because he was undermining and manipulating your ds so much re his behaviour around the dss.

ElliesPhotography Fri 15-Jan-16 15:18:52

ElinoristhenewEnid I left in November for few weeks, stayed with all my stuff in friends house. We went for few sessions of counselling, I moved back then. It seemed going good but these "equally treating kids issues" seem to be coming back slowly:/

swingofthings Fri 15-Jan-16 17:14:48

I really support sharing, so what I will do it to tell that the small boy can play on my sons laptop WHEN MY SON IS NOT BUSY THERE
Although I agree with the principle, I think expecting an 8yo desperate to play on a game to wait indefinitely without knowing when it might be his turn can be a bit cruel. Doing it this way, you are at risk of him waiting for say 2 hours, to then being told that he can play, but he only gets 5 minutes because you have to go out somewhere, or it is time for bed etc..., which will inevitably lead to trouble.

I would say the above, but when your son gets on it, I would ask him how long he expects to be on it and at what time he would be willing to let SS on it, ensuring that it allows enough time for him to enjoy it a bit.

You say that spending £30 to set it up on one of the other computer is not an option, but surely if the above is going to leave your son feeling that it is unfair (that he has to decide on a time to come off), then surely it is something worth considering? Maybe you could agree with DS that he does certain extra chores, and for each one he does, he gets a token towards it, ie 2 tokens worth £2 towards it. That would give him an incentive, will make him feel that he deserves to play, and it would feel fair to your son because he would have had to work towards getting the same than him (well almost as still not his own laptop).

tribpot Fri 15-Jan-16 18:08:07

Why is £30 not an option? If your DSS sold his SIMs 3 game that would go some way towards the cost.

It does sound as if this is a recurrence of an old issue and your DP has successfully played you. Having moved out once and then moved back in, you will be even more reluctant to move out again so it's win-win for him. Your ds deserves a less stressful home environment I think?

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