My step kids ignore me(8 Posts)
My oh has his DC half the week. I always leave them to time with their dad but also do a few bits with them too so it's a fine balance.
My problem is they ignore. Not blatantly, but if I speak to them it's like they don't take notice of me.
I will ask his 3 year old if he can go get his clothes (from his bed) and he will ignore me. I will ask him a number of times again and he just doesn't listen - it's like I'm not even talking. Sometimes when I ask he will just shout "no" in a very stroppy slightly angry way. I often have to go and mention to oh that he isn't listening to me. It's the same at tea time. I'll give him his food and he refuses to eat it. I went to a friends the other day with him and he played up and just wouldn't listen to me. In the end the friend had to step in.
With his 5 year old it's a bit different. If I asked him to get his clothes he would, but for other things he wouldn't. The other day I asked him not to do something and he carried on. My oh is reinforcing what I'm saying so "apple pie has said not to xxxx". It just doesn't seem to work. If I take him to the park he will flatly refuse to leave when I say it's time. If he wants something at home he will walk past me and ask his dad - he kind of makes me feel non existent at times.
I've been involved in their life for nearly 1.5 years and it's just became more noticeable as I become more involved in their lives. Perhaps I just want everything to be harmonious but it's totally normal??
It can be explained in a number of ways.
Maybe they are going through a stage where they are challenging being told what to do as a whole (kids do go through these stages at various ages!)
Or it could be that they've learnt that they can ignore the adults who are nice because it won't matter and you are one of them.
Or it could be that without realising recently, you've been asking them to do things they don't want to do quite a lot and they are rebelling, especially if you are asking them to do things that their mum or dad wouldn't expect.
I would say that you need to keep up as is and make sure your OH continues to pass the message they have to listen to you.
Having a 3 year old myself I would say an awful lot of what you describe with both kids is just normal behaviour for their ages to be honest.
My step kids are older (13 & 10) and I have been in their lives for just over 4 years so the youngest was a similar age to your eldest Dsc but they were just as bad and sometimes still are.
Part of it will also be a power play, they are testing boundaries and trying to establish their places in the hierarchy.
Your biggest battle is already won though - your dp is already backing you up. Keep doing what you are doing and it will change as they get older
Are you providing majority of the care during this time? Could they want to spent more time with their DP and when they are coming over they aren't getting that so they are acting up?
I agree that you seem to have been giving an awful lot of time to 'parent', and it is quite hard, the kids are there to see their Dad primarily.
All kinds of things could be happening, and kids can pick up the fact that 'an outsider' has taken their mum's place.
But they are young, and more flexible than teenagers. Can you spend less time having to do any parenting for a start. It isn't working. They also like 'routines' with the same parent. Could their Dad do all the putting to bed, giving them dinner. You could just do some of the 'nicer' things instead, like making them a drink that they like, which they have to ask you for nicely. Set up a 'routine' around a treat that only you and they share.
Oh gosh, they're such tinies!
I agree with the posters up thread. I would let dad do the parenting and if I were you I'd be entirely supplementary. Even though you're a long time into the relationship. In their small lives, you've maybe not registered yet.
I'd take a step back to be honest. They're so very young and it's hard for all of you, finding your place.
They call three year olds threenagers for a reason.
Does your partner ask the kids to do things as often as you do? If you're bad cop and he's good cop, of course they will ignore you and go to him.
Do you and your partner agree on the house rules? If not, (and the kids know that the adults disagree) they will follow the rules that suit them.
Apologies if I've got the wrong end of the stick by the way, it just sounds like you are doing the parenting while your partner gets to be Disney Dad.
Earlier I told my four year old to go and make her bed. She did go upstairs but rather than make her bed she instead changed into a swimsuit so she could "do her dance show". 3 & 5 year olds just behave like that. Earlier I asked my 8 year old to lay the table - she managed to put one fork on the table (there were 7 of us). I think you need to be a bit less sensitive.
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