5yo daughter and my partner clashing!!

(19 Posts)
HLHV Sat 07-Oct-17 22:14:31

This is my first post, so I'd really like it if somebody could offer me some advice and/or let me know if they have experienced anything similar and how it ended up resolving itself!!

I have a 5 year old daughter from a previous relationship, but I have been with my OH for 3 years, we live together, are engaged and have a 3 month old daughter together too! My OH and my daughter have got on well from the word go, never had any problems, she adored him and he adored her. He moved in with us, everything still fine, she has even asked me before about when she was a baby whether he fed her bottles because she doesn't ever remember first meeting him because she was so little, she has always known him to be around!

Until, now!! All of a sudden she has picked up an attitude towards him, doesn't like to be told what to do by him, says nasty remarks without any prior argument or provocation, makes it very clear to anybody and everybody that he is not her real dad (which he would never make out to be anyway!) it is just such a far cry from how she used to be with him. This has in turn rubbed him up the wrong way, as he does a lot for her and she is continuinely throwing it all in his face. I wasn't sure whether it was just her age and a general attitude that she has picked up from school, but it seems to be majority of the time him who takes the brunt of it. He is the stricter one out of the two of us, so I'm not sure whether it is just the rebellion against the bad cop, but even when he does nothing or says nothing she just seems to treat him with disinterest all of a sudden, which deep down I know really upsets him because of how this has never been an issue before, which then causes him to take on the persona of "I don't care anyway suit yourself", which obviously doesn't help as she's only 5 and doesn't understand! Also when she takes an attitude with me I know it's not personal it's a 5yo girl thing learning about boundaries but he seems to take it personally as she's doing this to me because I'm not her dad kind of thing.

When she was first introduced to him she didn't spend that much time with her real dad as he worked a lot on her time and didn't prioritise properly, so she spent her time with his parents when she was meant to be with him. Her dad then began seeing somebody new who had a daughter of a similar age and so he magically began to plan fun days out and have all the extra time in the world. i am wondering whether this new found closeness with her dad has made her feel guilty for becoming close to my OH and so she is pushing him away or I've even wondered whether he's made comments to her about him and she has noted this.

FINALLY there is the added element that I have just had a new baby and she isn't the only child anymore and maybe feeling insecure about that, however she has shown no signs of that being the reason and adores her little sister. Maybe the fact that my OH is her sisters real dad and not hers might be playing on her mind subconsciously? It definitely isn't that he is spending too much time with the baby and not her as he would much rather watch a movie and play with her than look after the baby who I'm EBF and seem to be tied to anyway!

I'm so unsure what is causing this clash but it's starting somewhere, he's adding fuel to the fire as he's feeling hurt and then retaliates and then she just tries to push him away from the family even more!

I really am at my wits end with the both of them and telling them constantly not to argue and bicker, but I don't know how to fix this! I need to understand what's causing this and when I ask her she just says there is no problem or she's only joking! And when I bring it up to him he says he has no problem it's all her!

Sorry to waffle on I just wanted to get the full story out there to see if anyone might be able to see something I'm missing or have any advice on how to handle it!!

OP’s posts: |
00100001 Sat 07-Oct-17 22:26:31

Sounds like DP needs to grow the fuck up.

Also find out why DD has changed her tune. Maybe she feels overlooked because 9f baby? Maybe something was said at school?

She's only doing this because something is wrong.

Find out what it is. Explain to DP to stay calm and do just reassure the child that he still loves her no matter what etc etc

00100001 Sat 07-Oct-17 22:28:46

She won be able to tell you what's wrong directly. She's 5.

Do the whole classic "draw a picture of you family" see who she includes, where they are on the picture etc. For not comment on her choices. Just praise her for drawing etc.

Also speak to her teacher. They will have noticed different behaviours and might be able to shed some light

00100001 Sat 07-Oct-17 22:28:56

She won be able to tell you what's wrong directly. She's 5.

Do the whole classic "draw a picture of you family" see who she includes, where they are on the picture etc. For not comment on her choices. Just praise her for drawing etc.

Also speak to her teacher. They will have noticed different behaviours and might be able to shed some light

NeverForgotten Sat 07-Oct-17 22:32:38

I'm guessing she has noticed a change since the baby has come along and she can't verbalise how she feels.

Dustbunny1900 Sat 07-Oct-17 22:35:35

Did this coincide with her seeing her father a lot more? That would be my very first guess.
Or does she feel less part of the family with a sister that's biologically his, and left out??

Redcliff Sat 07-Oct-17 22:44:12

Is it possible she is acting out because she is "testing" her SD - making sure he still loves her no matter what now he has a new daughter that is biologically his? Any child would feel unsure having a new sibling and then with her father changing things up as well there is even more for her to deal with


HLHV Sat 07-Oct-17 22:45:34

Wow! Thanks for the speedy responses! .. Yes I do agree he does need to grow up! and just accept it and not add fuel to the fire HOWEVER I do understand how this must feel as he has had more of a bond with her than her dad has for the last couple of years! Yes I agree something is bothering her I'm just unsure exactly of what and how to reassure her well!

OP’s posts: |
HLHV Sat 07-Oct-17 22:52:40

Dust bunny and red cliff,

(I'm unsure how to reply to a specific post as such!) :. YES I think your really on to something with the testing him because when he is affectionate and makes an extra effort with her she does sometimes go back to how she used to be with him! I will share this idea with him and see if he can understand where she might be coming from and think more about what he can do to prove this to her and reaffirm things with her! .. Yes it also I think has a lot to do with the more time she is spending with her dad, she is his only child and so when she goes there now and spends time with him she is getting his undivided attention even if it's just for a couple of hours after school. I am pleased they have more of a bond but I have to admit I am a bit miffed it is undoing the work of mine of the past couple of years giving her a safe happy comfortable home life and family (does that sound bad?!)

OP’s posts: |
swingofthings Sun 08-Oct-17 07:31:18

She is behaving totally normally. You've just had a new baby, and as such, you've had to give her less time, so you have time for the baby and she feels that your OH is therefore taking over looking after her so you can look after her.

She is lashing her fears and frustration at him, but it's really you she is testing. She is unconsciously telling you that she needs more of you and if she pushes him away by being horrible, then maybe you'll go back to give her more attention whilst he can look at the baby alone.

Nothing to worry about, normal process of accepting a new sibling in one's life. What does matter is that your DP needs to find it in himself not to take it personally. Kids' feelings go so up and down!

When DD was between 2 and 3, she wouldn't be alone with her dad. If I even just walk 5 minutes to get something to the corner shop, she screamed her head off that she wanted to be with me. Understandably, he felt very rejected. She got over this and when she turned 6 or 7, suddenly, it was the other way around, and all you heard from her was 'my dad this, my dad that'. She definitely grew up to be a daddy's girl, even though we are close.

Try maybe to make a bit more time with her and let your OH do more with the baby, whilst also doing a lot all four together. It will all be fine.

Alittlepotofrosie Sun 08-Oct-17 07:33:40

It sounds to me like she is testing whether you both love her. Both of you should take her out on her own and also all together and show her she's still important.

Wonders71 Sun 08-Oct-17 07:40:32

What swingofthings said! My daughter used to tell me she didn't love me all the time when she was 5/6 she was just seeing how far she could push my buttons! My reply was just to say ok didn't get upset or react because that is what she wanted.

Magda72 Sun 08-Oct-17 08:29:17

Also what Swing said. I know it's really hard when you're bfing but she really just wants her mama smile. Maybe start expressing & start letting dp give the baby a bottle while you do something fun with dd?

TittyGolightly Sun 08-Oct-17 08:41:23

Has she started school?

A basket of fun stuff you can do with DD whilst feeding is also good. Make it special time for you two rather than just baby.

Redcliff Sun 08-Oct-17 09:54:02

Something I've done with my oldest when he is having a rough time is have a "ds in charge" day when he gets to say what we do and I can't say no. We have had some great times and it gives him some control back. Maybe your dh could do this with her?

TittyGolightly Sun 08-Oct-17 10:19:24

Also look up "lovebombing".

swingofthings Sun 08-Oct-17 10:39:41

Redcliff, what a brilliant idea!

HLHV Sun 08-Oct-17 22:03:47

Thank you everybody for your thoughts and advice, I think it's a combination of it all and she is feeling overwhelmed and your right I think she is testing us/me too. I have told her today to choose a special day for us to have together in the half term and told her she can choose everything and her eyes lit up asking can I even choose our lunch?! It's funny really the simple things that make them happy, things can often get over complicated if you let them.. Think we've just got to concerntrate on having quality time alone with her and then all together, hopefully see a happier bunny!

OP’s posts: |
Dancinggoat Sun 08-Oct-17 22:24:29

The answer is in the first paragraph I'd say.
You have a baby with your partner. She is confused where she fits in with this situation. She feels vulnerable and is reacting to it

Join the discussion

To comment on this thread you need to create a Mumsnet account.

Join Mumsnet

Already have a Mumsnet account? Log in