Not a regular family type but with a regular step parenting issue

(36 Posts)
Silverlining11 Mon 20-Aug-18 04:45:42


My gf and I have been in a live-in for last few years. We are a lesbian couple with good corporate jobs. Earlier we shared a rented apartment. But for past 1.5 year we have been living in my flat which my mom has given to me. My gf's daughter (from her previous marriage) has also always been living with us. When I met my gf, her "brat" daughter was 7 and now she's 12. Her daughter and I share a bitter sweet relationship. Probably tolerating each other coz we both love the same woman. My gf is really big on the term "family" coz she's never had that regular family environment so she says it's a big thing for her to have everything so perfect in life. I agree with most of it except I am not too thrilled about the daughter part in the "family". Now before you judge me as evil, hear me out:

Apart from the fact that I am not too fond of the brat daughter (I try very hard to stay neutral!), the tussell between me and her daughter usually remains around two topics:
1. If cleanliness and hygiene is ignored
2. If she misbehaves with her mother / something she does that stresses my gf out (it works me up and instinctually I feel like she needs to be reminded to stay in her pants or behave or be more responsible after all her mother does for her!)

The daughter is turning into a brat with each passing day - replies back, argues on almost anything that she's told "No" for. At times when my gf is going on and on about "family", I admit I cringe a little inside about the fact that why can't it be just the two of us minus the daughter.

If after getting frustrated myself at times, I tell my gf that her daughter is quite irresponsible for her age and has to be reminded about every minor chore like making her bed etc She would get so defensive and always picks out the "one" thing I tend to screw up on....i.e. bringing the weekly vegetables on time. That's like comparing my one mistake against the million that her daughter makes.

If I m not happy about her 12 year old daughter not taking shower or caring about hygiene, she can easily resort to body shaming me or basically it just boils down to how I forgot to do some chore in the past or probably didn't take shower on a Saturday or didn't brush until 10 it just has to come down to me when it comes to us fighting over her daughter. My gf and her daughter can basically do no wrong. We don't fight often but when we do it gets mean. Especially from her end.

Phew! There is a part of me that does love my gf a lot but lately I have started to get this uncertain feeling in my head. It could be only coz of the level of our fights, not sure.

It's our anniversary in few days. I felt it's time I propose to her on this milestone year and I decided to also involve her daughter in the planning, but then I backed off a little because the daughter can be kinda overbearing and starts to get too involved trying to hijack the whole plan.

I ordered the ring but I am not sure. Honestly, I feel much better when the daughter is away and my gf doesn't talk about her.

Anyway I have one more week to decide whether I should propose or let it be. I am starting to question whether it's love or just need that we are still together.

Your thoughts will really help provide me with some clarity I think.
1. what do you think of this entire scenario?
2. do you think I am wrong here?
3. Do you think I should propose?

*Post edited by MNHQ at OP's request*

OP’s posts: |
Thatsfuckingshit Mon 20-Aug-18 05:05:13

Don't propose.

You need to split.

The daughter is 12. She is coming into teenage years, so yes it's normal to not make a bed or forget stuff or be stroppy. She needs to be pulled in her behaviour. What's she doesn't need is a step parent who would prefer hee not to be around. Kids pick up on stuff like this. Even if you are nice to her face. Your feelings toward her may influencing the behaviour in part.

I actually think your gf is right. No one is perfect, we all forget stuff, we all don't do everything we should. Your gf is right pointing out that you aren't perfect either.

You need to understand, your gf is this girls mother. There is no 'without the daughter' and the daughter doesn't deserve to grow up with someone who can't stand her.

Prestonsflowers Mon 20-Aug-18 05:19:40

Don’t propose.
Split up with your gf
Leave her alone with her daughter.

Unihorn Mon 20-Aug-18 05:20:00

Step parenting isn't for you so you need to split. You think far too negatively of a child and seem to forget that she is nowhere bear adulthood yet. Kids are shit. Teens are shit. But if you can't be civil and nice then you can't have a stepdaughter. The poor child probably knows you hate her.

Rebecca36 Mon 20-Aug-18 05:53:02

Split. Daughter is 12, imagine what she'll be like at 13 or 14? If you can't take that it's better you are out of the picture.

crisscrosscranky Mon 20-Aug-18 05:55:46

Please leave. This isn't fair on anyone, least of all the child.

Purpleneonpinkunicorns Mon 20-Aug-18 06:02:31

I think your being pretty harsh calling her a brat and saying that you wish it was just you and your partner without her daughter hmm.

Her daughter is still a child & is bound to not make her bed or make mistakes.

I think personally you should send your ring back and either use that money for some counselling or you and your partner split up.

Splitting up is probably the best option as you don't seem to like her daughter much, you just seem like you want her mother all to yourself.


ohreallyohreallyoh Mon 20-Aug-18 06:52:54

‘The brat daughter’.....have you heard yourself?

gettingtherequickly Mon 20-Aug-18 07:11:12

Sorry, but as a stepmum myself I think you need to split. Teenage years are hard and you and your gf don't agree on how best to raise her daughter.
It will only get harder, don't do it to yourself or the poor child.

QueenDoria Mon 20-Aug-18 07:18:07

Either split up as amicably as you can (i.e without blaming everything in the child) or take the child to a deep dense forest with a trail of breadcrumbs as her only hope of finding civilisation once more.
Oh, and if you've been referring to her as a brat since she was 7 years old (which your post implies) you may want to pay for counselling for her...

Peoplemaynoticeus Mon 20-Aug-18 07:24:36

Leave them alone, so what if she doesn't make her bed every time? You sound nasty and for the daughters sake walk away.

W0rriedMum Mon 20-Aug-18 07:36:25

Another one who thinks this must be miserable for all, esp a 12 year old who gets no choice. Every thing you mention is normal 12 year old behaviour.

CalonGlas Mon 20-Aug-18 07:48:28

Her daughter and I share a bitter sweet relationship

I'm not sure the 12 yr old would describe it like that. You don't even try to describe the situation from her point of view at any point in your lengthy post. Her childhood so far - reading between the lines - sounds emotionally complicated. Does she have a dad? If so, does she see him? Or his extended family? You say your GF 'has never had that regular family environment' - how has that impacted on the little girl? You've been living together for 5 years, so does that mean you moved in together more or less immediately?

To be honest, she sounds like a normal, confused, difficult 12 year old, and you don't sound much older.

junebirthdaygirl Mon 20-Aug-18 07:49:59

No only is this normal 12 year old behaviour but when you met " brat" dd she can come out of divorce in her home so was bought to be adjusting for a while to her new circumstances. All of us who have had teens know its a lot about loving them in spite of their behaviour. Thats what gets us through. Her mum has that love thats why she is able to cope with the bits that are off.
Have you read up about teens? Do you remember being a child yourself? Children are not born knowing things..they have to be trained. Thats a parents job and it all happens at different stages. You have big decisions to make here. You are the one who needs to change. Can you do it? If not split now as who knows what the teenage years will throw up for this dd . Her dm will love her through it but sounds like you will make it worse. Its an honour to have that dd in your life. She is vunerable having to live with a person not related. You are the adult. Step up or split. Do not marry your partner with major changes in how you perceive things.

Silverlining11 Mon 20-Aug-18 08:18:27


I appreciate everyone who took the time out to read the long post and respond to this thread.

All of your views (though a bit harsh at times) do have a common perspective. I may have missed out on the moments where we do have fun together as a family....and may have skipped other happy details..... but in the end I agree with you that even those occasional bouts of frustration need to be controlled at my end if I want this to work.

Thanks again. I shall try to work on it or else just leave amicably.

OP’s posts: |
runningscare Mon 20-Aug-18 08:26:27

Can you honestly say hand on heart this is what you want for the next 8-10 years?

I have decided to ignore the parts where you have called the child a brat ... as I don't think you are using it in the correct term. The child at times may present as a slob but I don't believe lack of personal care warrants the label of brat... however your behaviour towards the child may result in people thinking your behaviour is more suited with labelling as bratish as you are not getting your own way.

Quartz2208 Mon 20-Aug-18 08:26:56

2. If she misbehaves with her mother / something she does that stresses my gf out (it works me up and instinctually I feel like she needs to be reminded to stay in her pants or behave or be more responsible after all her mother does for her!)

This is the problem - you love your partner but its her daughter who is upsetting her - its a normal mother and daughter relationship to have a certain about of this and you are interfering in this.

Have you even tried to love her or do you simply see her as an inconvience in your relationship with your girlfriend. You dont want her there - YOU are probably the reason she is acting out. Imagine living with someone who clearly resents you

And she was 7 when you met and is now 12. You clearly dont have much experience with children as she sounds normal

Theshittyendofthestick Mon 20-Aug-18 08:33:13

You really don't sound well suited to step parenting. Even if you don't say it to her face, this girl will know how you feel about her. It's incredibly damaging for her to grow up with someone who has such disdain for her.
As others have said. You need to split.

CosmicCanary Mon 20-Aug-18 08:37:08

End the relationship.

I doubt you hide your hatred of her daughter and that is a terribly damaging enviroment for a child to grow up in.

If after 3 years you have no affection for this child and you only see her as a brat I honestly dont think your feelings will change even if you work at it.

I would dump you in a heartbeat if I knew you called my child a brat.

Mossend Mon 20-Aug-18 08:45:06

I think you def need to split.

You obviously detest your partners daughter and at 12 I'm sure she picks up on this, and if you think a 12 year old is a brat wait till you're dealing with a 14-15 year old. Her behaviour is normal for her age and will, probably, get worse before it gets better.

To be honest I'm not sure why her mother is letting you treat her daughter like this, she should be her priority and should be pulling you up for your obvious distain for her child.

FrancisCrawford Mon 20-Aug-18 08:45:54

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Coyoacan Mon 20-Aug-18 08:49:27

The sad thing is that you are a professional adult and you are competing and comparing yourself with a twelve-year-old.

TammySwansonTwo Mon 20-Aug-18 10:06:16

You wish it was just the two of you. It’s never going to be. She and her daughter are a package and barely tolerating her daughter is selfish - you shouldn’t be with her if you don’t want to accept them both. I grew up with a step parent who wished we didn’t exist - it caused years of pain. I feel so sorry for the daughter.

IfIWasABirdIdFlyIn2ACeilingFan Mon 20-Aug-18 10:11:28

I will never understand why fully grown adults move in with people they can’t stand. You hate they child so you shouldn’t live with her. If you still love your girlfriend then date her, but you can’t live with her daughter which means you can’t live with her.

Livinglavidal0ca Mon 20-Aug-18 10:15:59

Leave her.
She will always have her daughter in her life and you do not like her daughter. It won’t get better and she’ll inevitably pick her daughter over you.
Her daughter is HER family. You are HER family. If you have no intention of making her daughter part of your family you need to leave. She’s a child. Be the grownup and leave.

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