Why do I suddenly resent the ground my step daughter walks upon? :((39 Posts)
First of all, I know I'm being unreasonable. I'm trying to control it but this feeling is so deep rooted and strong that I'm struggling to smother it.
When I first met my partner, I knew he had a child and that he had her every weekend and on school holidays. I met her after a couple of months, when she was five, and I liked her a lot and quickly developed a loving bond with her. But the more time I've spent with her, the more she has begun to irritate me (she's a troubled child who demands the whole world to revolve around her, and the full attention of everyone in the room). I know that I should be making more of an effort because the unfortunate way she has been brought up on her mothers side is not her fault and I know that her behaviour is sometimes a cry for help, but she manipulates her dad who absolutely worships the ground she walks on, whereas for me I've grown so tired of this situation that I can't even stand to see her face any more. I don't even want to walk to the bathroom in the morning in case a floorboard creaks and she comes running to me. I can't stand the way she talks, eats, sings the same song over and over again, I can't even sit next to her any more because her presence prickles me. I do not want to feel like this, I want to be the happy family we once were and I know that it's me that's got the problem here, not her. Could this be some sort of natural rejection because I'm pregnant with my own child now? (Mine and her dads) I used to love her and enjoy spending time with her but now I absolutely dread Friday afternoons when I know we have to pick her up for the weekend. I'm going to seek help through counselling but I just wanted to know if anyone else has had/is having this experience and what can help to resolve it? Thank you ladies, please don't be too harsh with your comments, believe me the guilt of feeling this way is already eating me up enough x
I feel for you OP. I hope your okay. I don't have experience myself but I think that counselling is a great idea. Taking pro active steps to rectify the situation is a really good sign that you haven't given up on her.
Please please for your mh just call it a day. I was a sm and when me and dh split up the relief I felt that I would not have to deal with her and her dm was incredible!!
Some will be on here saying being a sm is the bees knees but honestly someof us just aren't cut out for it!!
I think it's partly because you're pregnant but also because your SD has hit an irritating stage and is aware that her life is about to change again. Cut both of you some slack - she will grow out of this phase and you will not always be pregnant.
She's five. A lot of the things she does are just standard five year old behaviour. With your own child you'd tolerate them more easily. Try and cut her some slack. Is it that her dad is not parenting very firmly? If so it's that problem you need to tackle.
Step parenting is hard and I have gone through similar with my SS. I have known him since he was 2, and is now a teenager.
I have felt as you do and then it changes to loving him as one of my own. It has gone back and forth over the past 10 years.
I think it is harder to love a child who is not yours, and harder to ignore their annoying habits, especially when the love is not reciprocated.
There is no magic formula for making it work. We managed by making sure that DH and I were rock solid and making time for us away from the kids.
I think you are also right in that being pregnant can have some impact on your feelings, maybe the primitive instant of protecting your own bloodline.
To be frank you sound a lot more troubled than the child.
Before your new baby comes you need to sit down with your dp and agree how you want your family to be. You need to agree how you will parent together and what is and isn't ok in your home. It sounds like there is already an element of you not approving of your dp parenting style and this will only get worse when your new baby arrives.
Take some time for your self let them have time together and try to schedule small parts of time the three of you.
No family is perfect all the time I have two dd s and one ss. Sometimes the sound of any of their voices is enough to drive me up the wall as is dh. Living as a blended family is tough, but if you cant have an honest conversation now with your dp things will only get worse once you are raising a child who lives with you full time and one who doesn't together.
I don’t think it’s natural for a woman to start hating kids when she becomes pregnant, no. You are right in that you need to see a therapist. This could be the start of post natal depresssion
Thank you those of you who have offered support and advice, it's reassuring to know that I'm not the only one who has felt this way.
Note: as I said in my original post, I KNOW I'm the one with the problem. Not her. She is a 6 year old girl who has no idea that there's even a situation. Also, I do NOT hate her.
I think the counselling is a good idea. Also a discussion with your DP about how you are going to parent both DC moving forward as it won’t work if expectations are different for your DC and DSD.
I will also just say that if you have previously had a good relationship this might just be a phase. Last year there were a few months where I really found my (biological) DD difficult to be around - it was just after the premature birth of our DTs, I was spending a lot of time in hospital with them then coming home where she was (naturally) struggling to leave my side. She was clingy, loud and demanding when all I needed was rest and I found it too much trying to deal with her. I felt awful about it and followed lots of love-bombing suggestions - I feel awful admitting it but it felt like a chore forcing myself to spend time with her but I made myself put up the pretence. I’m not sure if the love-bombing worked or if it was getting the twins out of hospital but i am so thankful the feeling passed and I went back to finding my DD wonderful and enjoying spending time with her. I still feel awful about it but I am fairly confident she had no idea how I felt. So please don’t feel too guilty as it sounds like you don’t want to feel this way so hopefully you can get past it.
How long have you felt this way? did it come all of a sudden or has it been a gradual thing? On one hand you say that the problem is not her at all, but then you talk about her being badly brought up at her mum. These are two conflicting feelings.
The fact that you are pregnant is indeed probably having a psychological impact on how you feel. Maybe you've gone from liking her because deep inside you knew that you had to 'win' your partner. Now that you are pregnant, your unconscious might be telling you that you would so much a happy 'normal' family without her.
You should definitely go and see a counsellor very quickly before your feelings because obvious and totally devastate your OH.
It's great that you are seeking help, but your step daughter really shouldn't have to be around you while you feel like this. What are your and your partners plans to stop his dd being exposed to your feelings and attitude?
lunar a previous post says she is unaware of the situation and she does not hate her.
It's been said on these threads before....you have fake it til you make it!!
I think it probably is about you being pregnant, bloody hormones and all that.
If the child is not doing anything different, then maybe you'll have to, take a deep breath, paste on a smile....and try to overcome these new feelings. If they persist, well after your own child is born, then probably that's the time for counciling
Literally everything you've all said has been so helpful. Thank you, that's all really positive and constructive advice. I've had a couple of days that have been a lot better now, but I'm seeing my midwife tomorrow and I'm 100% still going to ask about seeking help with this and hopefully some counselling. Thanks for your support and advice ladies x
As you said you met her at 5 and she's only 6 now and you're pregnant yourself. You haven't really had very long to bond with her before having your own child. When you say "we" pick her up on the weekend, is there anyway that just your partner could pick her up? This was he has a very dominant role with her and you can just help, putting less pressure on you? Once the child starts to realise you don't like her, she'll pick up on it and it'll be difficult to win her over again.
Keep strong, it's a tricky situation. I'm speaking as a step mother of 5 years who's just started TTC.
From your op you sound like you have rushed this relationship met her quickly and got pregnant if she was only 5 and is now 6. She sounds like a typical child. What you got to decide if being a step parent is really for you because she won’t be going anywhere and you feelings are likely to worsen once you have a child of your own if you don’t get help to deal with these feelings.
I've seen my midwife today and been referred to the mental health team to consider which is the best plan of action moving forward. Sounds scary but I know it's the right thing to do, as if I don't get this problem under control now I know that you're right and it will only get worse as the pregnancy progresses and eventually when I have my baby. I think a massive part of it is to do with my extreme mood swings due to pregnancy, as sometimes it's a lot worse than other times. But like I said I'm on the right track to getting the appropriate help with it now. Thanks for your support!
I was like this.My ex stepdaughter (she wasnt the reason my and XH split) and I met when she was 7 very shortly after I began to resent her which I felt so bad about.We rarely spoke and I hated being a step mum.I was only 23 when me and her dad met and it wasn't until she got into her early teens that we found some common ground and liked each other.I can't offer any advice but there us a chance you can come out the other side in time
Don't beat yourself up, whilst pregnant your hormones are all over the place, it's good you have recognised your emotions and are seeking help.
Bless you, that must be so distressing for all involved/aware. To be blunt, pregnancy can make you batshit crazy (apologies for any offence caused to anyone, I don’t mean to mock mental health issues), give yourself time and space to work through your feelings, well done for admitting it and taking action. Good luck x
What a fantastic thread and proof that MN still has the ability to provide thoughtful helpful (mostly) experienced based advice .
I've become so sick of the default to bash step mums no matter what their problem .
It always seems that ex-wives/mothers are always portrayed as poor, saintly paragons who have been abandoned by happily married husbands , tempted away by scheming sex sirens with nothing but hate in their hearts for children of the first marriage.
Really good to see a step mum able to be honest about her current feelings and get great advice without being bashed . Except the inevitable too soon, (which I think is nonsense btw. as met my dcs 3 Weeks after meeting DH and moved in together 8 Weeks after that - so no hard and fast 'rules' from me)
As for the issue OP - I completely understand. I live with 2 dsc (although one at Uni) and 2 younger come EOW. I know only too well the feeling of Friday night dread and I don't even have dcs with DH mine are from previous marriage.
The feelings have waxed and wained massively over the years but for me it's about 'interruption' for want of a better word. We have a family unit. Me, DH, his 2 and my two. Then EOW his youngest arrive and 'interrupt' our day to day family life for another dynamic and I resent it. I would obviously never say anything because it is wholly unreasonable. It doesn't make my feelings disappear though. They are lovely kids. terribly babied by their DM (And DH) but otherwise great. (Non of this was their choice. I always tell myself when feeling negative. ) so after over a decade I would say it's not the kids per se. It's the lack of an uninterrupted family unit.
What to do ? For me, plaster on a smile and crack on
kittens - it was a good supportive thread until you ended it with the inevitable EX bashing. Give it a break.
Oh and you are the one who wants the uninterrupted family unit -it does not exist, never has and never will. You have a family unit it involves his 3 DCs and your joint 2 - it never was anything different and to the youngest DSC - this is his family unit as well.
Thanks for lowering the tone of an other wise good thread
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