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Step son moved in and i cant cope(77 Posts)
My partner of 4 years who i share two daughters with has a 11 year old son from a previous relationship. Up until last year his mother refused my partner contact so i had only met him twice briefly in the near 4 years we been together. End of last year she decided that her son was to move in with his dad and obviously he wanted to take his son as he had been denied a relationship for years. I cldnt see a problem with it and agreed. Fast forward. He has been living with us for less than a year and i am starting to get resentful. He miss behaves, doesnt listen, lies, is mean to my dog and has now scared his little sister so much she wont sleep at night, he was caught pulling her pillow and duvet off her Im torn because i know he must be feeling allsorts bcoz his mother has jst abandoned him and had another baby (no.5) but she wont let him visit. I just feel annoyed by him and feel my patience running out. I hate having to take care of him along with my own. Has anyone else gone through this and made it out the other side. I cant talk to my partner bcoz he is struggling with him also.
I've not been in the situation so I really don't know.
You are doing an amazing thing, and could make a life changing difference to this child.
Can you get support as a family? It sounds like he needs counselling, and you and your DH need support as well.
Can you talk to the school?
Have you considered moving out with your daughters? You can’t let them be terrorised by him, and your poor dog too. It’s sad that the boy is in such a difficult situation but you can’t let him abuse your girls. Your DD is already scared of him, who knows how far the abuse might progress.
First things first, I'm not a step parent. And he can't continue to hurt your Dd or your dog. But he is 11... still a child. A child that is now living with a family he didn't really know because (if we take your op at face value) his mother no longer wanted him at her home.
Can you really not see where his acting out is coming from? I'd say school and gp for some sort of counselling first of all and some boundary setting by you and his dad. But more importantly make him feel wanted. It sounds like he's having a rough time.
We spoke to the school but wasnt much help. Doesnt help his mum didnt even send him a birthday card or even a phonecall on his birthday. Which just blows my mind as a mother myself. I wouldnt know where to look for counciling and wouldnt be able to afford it
Christ. This is a tough situation. Step-parenting is a minefield and if more people knew what they were getting into, they probably wouldn't go on to have second families. (By that, I mean having half-siblings with another partner.)
"First family" children always feel conflicted when a parent - either mother or father - go on to have more children with another partner. They feel that they weren't good enough, and they feel betrayed by the parent (or parents). They feel unsafe in their status. It's like they were the "dry run/test" but it didn't work out so they were expendable.
So these awful feelings are not his fault. What he needs is a whole lot of support and, probably, counselling so he has an environment where he can say anything he wants to in a safe environment. He might want to call his parents every name under the sun, and moan about you, or his sisters. But that's okay.
There's a scared boy in there and his mum clearly isn't interested. He's 11, he's in senior school facing a heap of expectations, the world is a confusing mess, and he feels abandoned and resentful.
Throw into this mix social media, gaming, vile hardcore porn and gang violence. The internet porn issue in particular is highly toxic for boys. And now he's living in your house and even his father doesn't know what to do with him.
In my instance, I got sick to death of feeling like a fucking referee while my DH stuck his head in the sand and wouldn't engage with the problem. And is WAS a problem.
I think you and your DH need to sit down and actually talk through what this needs to look like. Does DSS have his own room? What are the house rules? Does his Dad make an effort to do things exclusively with his son? Going to the DIY shop or doing some sport together? Your stepson needs to feel reassured that he is his father's son, and that his father loves him just as much as his daughters with you.
It's really challenging to bring together a blended family successfully. Do please seek help and guidance.
Go to gp
Counselling for children of free ish.
His behaviour is out of control and need serious help .
Take him to dr now
I don't know how old your daughters are, but do you still have a relationship with your health visitor? They might have information. And you shouldn't have to pay for counselling if you go through your GP. Also try looking up youth groups in your area. You really do need to access some help for him.
As others have said, you need to access some support for this boy ASAP.
Essentially, he is living with people who are largely strangers to him, including a dad he barely knows who has "replaced" him with cute little siblings. His one constant, his mum, has abandoned him. No wonder the poor kid is a complete mess.
That's not your fault, but his dad needs to get him some counselling and support as soon as. This isn't misbehaviour, it's much deeper than that.
I cant talk to my partner bcoz he is struggling with him also.
That’s more of a reason to get talk to him about it. Share your concerns and see if you can work through it together. There’s no point in you both struggling alone
You can call social services and ask to be referred to early help as well as going to GP and asking to get him on the waiting list for counselling.
My partner had bad experience with social work as a child so will not reach out to them, long story but I completely understand his reservations.
We have spoke about it often but i feel my imput about lack of coping wont help him.
Its a completely new thing for me so im trying very hard to understand. His dad set alot of boundaries but he doesnt seem to listen, tried talking it out with him, grounding, taking his electronics off, they take the dog out to have chats alone together.
Definitely going to look into getting him help. He shares a room with our eldest daughter and still on the waiting list for a bigger house which i think will help tremendously. Neither of us ever saw him coming to live with us, or his mother letting him until he was atleast 16 so nothing was prepared for. He has no interest in sports or any kind of kids groups/youth clubs.
An 11 year old boy shouldn’t be sharing a room with a girl he’s not grown up with. Especially if he’s pulling her blankets off. You need to give him his own space somehow, along with everything mentioned by PPs on here. Given your username, are you expecting again? Surely the last thing this kid needs is another baby in his life. So much upheaval it’s no wonder he’s acting up. He needs counselling and fast.
I am not expecting again, iv had my baby. What option did we have? Its not like it was a choice for me. Maybe his own mother should of thought of that. Im trying my best, so if you have a magical solution please enlighten me. Send him off into care like his brother bcoz thats what her older boy is in
I am currently on the couch with the baby in moses basket and daughter is in my bed. Or vice versa bcoz they cannot share.
It sounds like he needs some support from camhs. You can speak to the gp about this but you probably also need the support from school. This will mean being frank about the problems and asking for help. I have had a challenging year with my own son so I get where you are coming from in terms of finding it hard. Support and counselling can help but it’s a process and takes time. Sit down with dh and talk it all through but make it about the child and the child’s needs rather than how you feel, that may be a way to approach it to help get him on side
OP my heart goes out to you but this really is your husbands problem to deal with (with your support of course). Firstly is there a reason he did not try and access his son through courts? It almost sounds like his son is like a stranger to him. Are you able to move and rent privately? He really should have his own space at his age. If not can the girls share?
I appreciate that things sound toxic with his mum but can your DP try and reach some middle ground with her so the boy can see his mum now and again. Also reach out to GP - there is counselling available. Also don't be afraid of asking support from SS and school.
This is obviously a very scared mixed up boy who has been pushed from pillar to post. If you don't do something now things will get worse. You and your DP need to put up a united front. Maybe even couples counselling as the dynamics of your family has changed. Relate is means tested I believe.
Tough situation to be in and not being able to talk to your dp will build more resentment up in you that may be directed at the boy.
He's had to cope with a lot of changes and I'm assuming secondary school which isn't as supportive as primary.
Your best bet is to speak to the family and young people's service, it's the step below social services. They will assess him and hopefully signpost to art therapy and maybe do some sort of life story work with him.
He needs to feel safe and secure, he won't feel safe and secure without boundaries and a lot of love. You will not be able to give him the love he needs whilst feeling resentful because your dp won't support you.
I would plan family bonding time, nice days out, boardgames, film nights, bbqs ect. Then I would give him a job (my 11 year old washes up every night and my thirteen year old dries up and puts away) and give him pocket money based on the job.
Find him your local youth club, they usually have an 11plus evening once or twice a week. Let him bike there, make friends and build his social connectedness in your home. social connectedness, feeling that he has a place in his family and feeling connected to you, do and your DC will most likely help dispel his poor behaviour.
I'd make him do a sport/hobby. Give him a year to try different things and then he has to choose.
I cannot imagine anything more difficult than having an angry, insecure, confused 11yo boy dumped in your lap with practically no warning, especially when you don't really have room for him (not your fault) and your own children are little girls so you haven't parented a child of this age before (also not your fault).
I agree with all those saying to go to your GP and ask for a referral to CAMHS - make some notes before you go, write down all the behaviours that worry you and don't downplay it. MH services for kids are very overstretched so you have to be the squeaky wheel.
I'd sit down with him - just you, him and dp - and agree some ground rules which are then put up in the house for you all to follow. Encourage dp to do some regular activities with him, not just walking the dog - something that happens at the same time every week is good, that helps an insecure child to feel that they can rely on it - swimming, or kicking a football around at the park? Whatever they enjoy. If you could also do something one-to-one with him each week - even take him out for a hot chocolate and chat - that would probably also help build the relationship and make him feel valued, but I appreciate that you have a lot on your plate already!
There must be firm, predictable consequences for hurting the dog or your daughters. That has to stop. And definitely mention it to the GP when asking for the referral.
Please don't be too hard on yourself for having the feelings you're having. It is entirely natural. Having a new baby will also intensify those "cuckoo in the nest" instincts - you can't help that, you can only be aware of it and control how you respond to it. Try and praise him as much as you can when he's not being difficult - if you have to grit your teeth, that's OK, it will get better.
She moved away with him and oh could not afford to go through court. She would stop and start access when she felt like it ( depending on her relationship status) we cant afford to private rent, it’s ridiculous where we live.
Do you mean you have a two bedroom home? He really needs his own room. If his older brother is in care that must be something he is worried about too.
Taking the dog for a walk is not enough - your husband needs to do something proactive - the boy is his child. He should be moving heaven and earth to get the family into bigger housing and the proper support. It’s just not good enough to say he has had past issues with social services (though I don’t think hays the way to go). He needs to do something NOW before this lad starts to get in real trouble.