Has anyone actually had counselling/therapy to improve relationship with SC?(13 Posts)
This is my first time posting and I really feel like I need some advice. I have a SD who is 5, she is a really lovely little girl (she has her faults like all children but is generally a nice child) she stays with us every other weekend. I have always found the ex wife difficult but this is never affected our relationship with my SD. We got on well initially, after I had my son two years ago, I found it a little harder as I felt so consumed by how I felt for him but I still liked her and tried my best to make her feel loved and welcome.
In September last year I suffered a miscarriage and again in March I had another miscarriage at 5 months. Since the first miscarriage I have found it incredibly difficult having her in the house. I find her a constant reminder of his ex wife and I get upset and angry when my husband puts her before my son and I. My husband has tried really hard to make me feel better but understandably wants to see my SD and it causes friction when he realises I don't want her there. I am aware that the problem is me and that this poor girl hasn't done anything to deserve my dislike but I can't seem to get back the feelings I used to have for her. I also don't want her to pick up on my feelings and although I try to hide them, I can't keep up the pretence all the time and kids aren't stupid, she will realise I don't like her being here. I don't want to damage this little girl who doesn't deserve any of this and I feel I should walk away but I also don't want to break up what is otherwise a very happy marriage with my husband and deprive my son of a full time relationship with his dad. I feel like counselling is probably a good idea but I wondered whether anyone has experienced this and whether it did help?
Thank you for reading x
I would look for someone with experience in the difficulties of step parenting. Relate would be a good start. It can't hurt to get counselling.
Why do you think your step daughter is the priority when she is only with dad every other weekend? Do you not think she deserves some kind of priority 2 days out of 14?
Why are you insecure about the ex? She is surely an ex for a reason?! Has something happened?
Yes, I agree she does deserve some priority, it can't be nice for her but I can be completely rational and then as soon as she gets here, I get upset and resentful.
I honestly don't know why the ex is suddenly an issue. I think I feel like a bit of a failure for not giving him the family he wants that she could have done.
Thank you for the suggestion of relate, I agree counselling certainly can't hurt and I do realise I am the one who needs to change x
Hi OP, sorry you've had such a rubbish time. I find it takes a lot of effort to treat a child like your own when they aren't and maybe you just aren't up to it with all you've been through. Your home is your safe haven and I know I felt invaded when DPs children came and it felt like they completely took over, everything was about them and I was left in chaos. I had a traumatic time after the birth of my son and I found it all too much. I let it affect how I felt about them as their mother just brought too many problems and drama into my life that I just couldn't deal with at the time and I just wanted it gone so I could focus on getting my son and me better after a very rough time.
Counselling probably would help you but I don't have any experience sorry. Your H sounds nice and like he wants to work on things and support you, so that's definitely a positive.
Thanks MumOfTwo, i do feel find it overwhelmed and probably don't react as well as I should when she's here. I hope you and your son are better now x
I had counselling over just this issue and found it helped to straighten out my own thoughts.
However, these are the early days. Things will get a lot harder and I think you need to seriously think about coping strategies for the teen years. It seems quite common for teen sds to come and live full time with their dad. That is what happened to me. It was really hard and nearly drove us apart several times. I would think about options such as living apart if you can.
Do you and SD have a thing?
For example, do you like doing her hair/she like you doing her hair?
What about films? Do you both love Disney?
Or food? Do you both like a certain food?
I think any of these could be used as bonding moments - something you and her can share that you can't do with DH or your DS.
Then... fake it til you make it. Go over what you want to do in your head before she gets there to keep you calm. Maybe prep DH so that he doesn't say the wrong thing (if he doesn't know what you're doing).
I'm sorry for your losses
To lose this little girl as well must be so sad
Your post is heartbreaking, makes readers want to give you a big huge hug x I think counselling is a great idea. My gut feeling is that it has nothing to do with step-parenting but with your losses and the need for extra attention/affection that comes from it. Miscarriages are heartbreaking and make you scared and vulnerable and therefore more needy of attention. It might be that unconsciously, you feel more vulnerable right now than your SD, hence feeling that your DH should give you more of his attention than to your SD.
I expect counselling focusing in grief will help you overcome this and your negative feelings towards your SD will gradually disappear.
I think you know that counselling will be a good thing - go and do it.
You are far better SM for admitting there is a problem, recognising that your resentment of your DSD is not really part of that, but is your outlet at the moment for everything else.
She does not deserve to be hurt but you need some external guidance. You will drive a wedge between you and your DP, because you will eventually expect him to choose between his children - that will not end well.
Take care and go and talk to someone.
I actually feel a bit better just admitting im finding it difficult so hopefully this will get things on the mend. I have contacted relate today amd I'm hopeful. Thanks for all the kind words and support x
I get where you're coming from. We tried for years to have a child of our own and couldn't. When we were going through fertility treatment I had some of the feelings you described. Counselling was good for me but it's not a cure! I find my partner's children much easier now but I still find his ex wife almost intolerable. Counselling helped me think about things differently but it didn't take away any of the grief and bitterness associated with being a childless (not by choice) step parent.
I'm so sorry you lost your two babies, you must be still grieving....so don't be too hard on yourself! The advice Justanother gave is spot on, fake it until you can make it as real as possible! You obviously care about your DSC's welfare, but I get that feeling of, just not wanting to be around her....she's NOT yours, and you'll never feel the same about her as you do your own. But, if you want your relationship to continue, you're just going to have to get passed this! Why not suggest that perhaps one of the days her dad takes her out, and you make them her favourite tea, with a favourite film to follow. Then, on the second day, you do something she enjoys, together as a family. I
I wish you the best of luck!
Be careful of those feelings about your SD being like the Ex - counselling might be a great place to talk openly about this - as this could grow and get worse. You need to find peace somehow with that - even if it is removing yourself and having a break from step parenting for a month or so. Just stepping back.
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