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Step daughters BM not interested(17 Posts)
Hi basically my 12 yo stepdaughter came to live with us 6 weeks ago as her mother would not stop taking drugs and drinking. She is an alcoholic and drug abuser - we were told she stopped but she hadn’t and so DH took her into our care. Social services said I’d SS is in her BM care SS will go into child protection.
So DH told BM she need to make arrangements for a contact centre as her drinking.
Meanwhile we live in a small place and everyone knows everyone and BM was seen out drunk and taking drugs.
She then text DH after 2 weeks not contacting SD that she wants to see SD but can’t afgord a contact centre but she has been out regually drinking and taking drugs so DH explained if you can afford this you can afford a contact centre - it’s £15 an hour here.
Still nothing - no arrangement etc
BM pays no child auooort or suppose SD with nothing we pay for everything.
SD is becoming down again as her BM won’t ever put her first - her words thing is I know BM hasn’t ever really wanted her BM has said to me a couple times so I want to have her instead of her.
SD has had counselling we out her in private counselling as doctor wouldn’t help. We can not afford to pay for a contact centre as well as everything else and BM has never provided for SD we have been buying everything SD needs since I came in the Scene 6 years ago.
Thing is what can we say to SD as to why her mums not seeing her - she knows about contact centre as social services sole to her about this. How can we explain we can’t make her BM see her ?
Sorry phone changed words on me posting
Your poor step daughter. It great that she can be cared for by you and her Father and she is having counselling. Now she is living with you can you arrange for proper maintenance from her Mother through cms? Do make sure tat you will recieving any child benefit and not the mother. I can't see that seeing her mother would enrich this girls life in any way and as she gets older she will be able to take a mature view of her mother's neglect and substance abuse. All you can do for this girl is offer unconditional love and understanding and try and make her realise her mother's failure is not a reflection on her and she is worthy of love and care. If the mother wants to see her daughter she will find the mother it is not your job to enable her.
@sue51 Thankyou you are right it’s been on going ever since I meet DH nut came to a head last year - SS never listened to many peoples reports about BM and ours for many years and with no proof we couldn’t have SD here but now BM seems to given up bothering as you say of her BM wanted to see her child she’d find the money - BM is one who gets any money spends it immediately hence thousands in debt with rent.
I suppose as I’ve akways put my children first it’s seems alien to me.
Thankyou for replying x
Could you facilitate a small level of contact somewhere public - eg in a coffee shop or something? Make sure she has a phone on her and instructions to call you if her mum is out of order or she wants to leave stay nearby, and let her have a catch up with her mum? That wouldn't cost anything but would keep DSD reasonably safe and allow her to see her mum. She must miss her mum and probably worries about her so it could help.
Also, Alcoholics anonymous offer support to families of alcoholics, and I think they do stuff for kids and teens too. Might be done help even if she has no plans to return to living with her mum any time soon
@firefliess Thankyou for the suggestion No BM is violent she attacked all 3 of her husbands and also recently text DH she will come around our house and knock me out as she has nothing to lose it’s all on police record and I have clothes her BM and have her food and clothes her other daughter I did nothing.
SD wants to go into a contact centre we tried the BM seeing SD only for BM to tell SD BM tried to kill herself in January and last year this ain’t acceptable BM know my son in law hung himself in June and how we are grieving he is daddy to my grand children BM now ex husband was with her then and he has no idea what BM is talking about so she makes things up to gain attention and sympathy she is a compulsive liar and DD wants to have contact where she feels she is safe from hearing these awful things.
BM has been given many many opportunities believe me many, she simply neglects SD badly and then plays the Marta.
I grew up with an alcoholic father my ex husband is one 16 years with him and my brother is one so I know how SD feels.
She is very grown up like I was as she’s seen and heard plus witnessed more than any child should.
She’s seen a druggy friend of her BM smash her BM house up the police called numerous times to her house to BM drink driving and buying and selling numerous loved pets.
I agree SD should see her BM but BM doesn’t act like normal parents as she is ill and is on antidepressants but drinks all the time and takes drugs. DH has a responsibility to keep SD safe and last month SD went to a place near where we live with her first with BM, BM git drunk and was crying on a homeless man infront of SD and SD friend and walked off leaving them when they’d simply popped into play on the machines in an arcade not telling them where she was... she’s gone to another pub the sad thing is SD knew where she was without being told and her BM was very very drunk a social worker saw her and reported her hence the child protection conversation. BM isn’t allowedSD in her care as she’s not able to care for her and BM would kick off big time if she had to be supervised and SD has been through enough to have to witness that xx
I don't think you should encourage the child to see her mother.
It may seem heartless but the poor child has been through enough.
All you can do is show her how much you care for her and make her home as stress free as possible.
Practical things you'd do for your own child and definitely being involved with things at school, even if just accompanying your dh.
It sounds like the mother won't have PR for a while, if ever and the child needs stability.
You are doing a fantastic job, thank God somebody cares.
How involved is your dh, does he do much of the emotional work?
You both showing a supportive and loving front will help her no end.
@RomanyRoots no my DH is a workaholic I get left to do all his child’s care and emotional need she talks to me about all this never him unless he asks.
Tbh both parents need akock up the ass it is hard for me as I have to work and do everything for everyone in the house and I get SD needs a lot but my 2 eldest also have an alcholic father who didn’t bother so I’ve been through this already and my youngest she gets fed up with all the focus on SD as she’s a year older but my whole relationship with DH has been focused on his daughter and her needs so for me it has been mentally exhausting.
Lalamene Do be careful that you don't get emotionally burnt out by all this. Your DH really does need that kick up the arse to make him step up and actually parent his daughter. She's been badly let down by her Mother and he must make feel loved and secure and listened to. You're doing a great job under extreme pressure but you can't do everyone's job alone.
sue51 Thankyou 😘. I have been doing everyone’s job nearly 6 years now in this time I’ve had late baby loss to sepsis my daughter had 3 children in 26 months 2 were Orem she was was ill lived 100 miles away
Then my son in law hunt himself in June at 22 he’s the father of my 3 grand babies and I’ve been left to deal with SD needs and run the whole house alone as well as try cope with all the other things - I have chronic ibs d so it’s hard my burger is also a chronic alcoholic who keeps taking over doses
I’m tired tbh it’s all hardwork I know SD needs a lot but ok one person and simply need a break I may go visit my friend she lives like 250 miles away but it would be nice to go relax have a laugh and be me instead of everyone’s rock.
I even had SD step dad text me on Facebook a week ago as BM dunked him he was suicidal and cut his wrists we had to get him a n ambulance and he’s never even spoken to me in 6 years ?
Have you spoken to your local drug and alcohol service about whether they provide support to the children of adults with these issues? I see you’ve got her counselling which is great but they might be able to help her understand it from the drug and alcohol point of view a bit more and provide groups where she could get support.
Op you are amazing as have been so strong for this child!
I have a similar situation where my dp has full residency of my dss and dsd for the last 4 years.
In 2016 he went to court and this was formally granted with the view that dm would have regular contact with the children. Dss is severely learning disabled and has complex needs. Dm stated that she did not want dss but only dsd, social worker supported dp and judge stated that eventually dsd would have overnight contact with her mum eow after they had both completed a 6 week course regarding safeguarding, boundaries etc. Within 3 months of court order dsd had started this contact. Dm got into a relationship with a man and didn't tell dp. Social worker got reports of DA and told dp to get disclosure under Sarah's law. It was really bad so dp and social worker said contact should be at contact centre as dm kept having this horrible man around dsd and not tell us. When dp told her contact centre the boyfriend was very abusive and would call both dp and myself with abuse and threats. From March 2017 to January 2018 dm did not see her children as she refused contact centre. I eventually got sick of the heart break it was causing dsd who at 11 did not understand why her mum was putting her after this man. Dm comes to our house 1 to 2 times a month... We said she could come every week but she refuses. Dsd dislikes contact with her now and struggles with time with her. Dss struggles as well but dm is not really interested in him when she is here. Dm is now due a baby this month with this man and we have been preparing dsd that contact may reduce again as money and all the safeguarding issues etc
I would say from everything that has happened to us, be there for your sd and give her as much love as you can. We cannot take mum's place but we can support them in every way we can. My dsd is almost 13 now but she's been through so much. She is lashing out atm due to this baby, lots of conflicting emotions about it. I don't know the answer to dm who don't step up. I'm still completely baffled that the woman doesn't fight tooth and nail for her children or see them whenever she can. I don't understand how a man that beats her up is more important than her kids. But I do my best by them every day, emotionally, financially, whatever they need.
My heart goes out to you op, I seriously understand it all. It's shit.
Look after yourself here! Oxygen mask in first!
That’s the first thing.
In terms of telling SD, I’d be honest, open but understanding. Don’t pay yourself, don’t fudge it or lie to SD. She needs to cope with her Mum as she is, the reality. She needs to process it. If she doesn’t have the information or you ‘make it all right’ she’ll just be delayed the reality.
Social workers should help with surely?
I’d say, look we have a contact Centre available, your Mum can meet you in, but she has to pay, she has to be able to do it. She’s in a very chaotic place at the moment, and is unable to do this. It doesn’t mean she doesn’t care, but it does mean that she’s not in a good enough place. That’s not your fault. Addiction is a very damaging and difficult thing. Some people say it is like an illness.
I’d talk more about what she knows or thinks, give her books to read that might help, get her young minds and child lines number. Be patient and open.
I guess that this is probably a marathon, not a sprint, and your ability to just be normal, to treat her like a normal kid, is key.
How old is SD?
Could you arrange contact in a public place where you/her dad are a few yards away?
Drug and alcohol are addictions. Addicts put their addiction above everything else.
Your DH isn't helping by working so much. His DD needs him. What if you left him? It's not right that you've been lumbered with all the care.
As much as her mum is at fault...I often see her step mums doing the lions share of child related activity ..begs the question why their previous relationships failed.
If he's left you who isn't her mum to deal with everything..imagine how he must have been with her mum.
This doesn't just apply to you ... but it's a lot of men/dads.
I feel sorry for your SD.