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I am stuck in the middle of dd and dh's arguments

(23 Posts)
Dancergirl Tue 13-Mar-18 13:26:31

Dd (15) is going through a bit of a tough time at the moment. She is very down/depressed/anxious and we are waiting for an appointment to see a therapist.

We are close and she will talk to me which is good. However, she is not getting on at all well with dh at the moment. At best she finds him 'annoying', at worst 'entitled'. She's hardly got a nice word to say to him at the moment.

Dh does have form for saying the wrong thing, think he's finding the whole teenage girl thing a bit mystifying. I've talked to him a lot about it and he is making an effort not to put his foot in things.

I am really stuck in the middle. I know I shouldn't take sides but sometimes it's very difficult. Last night they clashed over dd stretching out on the sofa making it difficult for dh to sit down.

How do you deal with this? Dd will tell me how annoying dh is being, what do I say to her??

Knittedfairies Tue 13-Mar-18 13:29:47

Hard as it is, I think they'll have to muddle through this themselves; you won't be able to please both of them if you intervene - one of them will be down on you whatever you do. Good luck!

RunRabbitRunRabbit Tue 13-Mar-18 13:34:41

You tell her to talk to him herself to find a better way to communicate instead of moaning to you.

Life is full of annoying people, like those who stretch out on a sofa so you can't sit down on your own damn sofa. We all have to learn to talk to people.

NorthernSpirit Tue 13-Mar-18 13:34:47

Your daughter might be going through a tough time, but to find her dad ‘annoying’ and ‘entitled’ I find a bit disrespectful to the adult in this. She’s a child.

Last night they clashed as she was stretched out on the sofa, making it difficult for him to sit down. Your daughter sounds the entitled one in this.

Do they spend any 1 on 1 time together? That might help?

Bringmewineandcake Tue 13-Mar-18 13:34:59

Yeah this was my dad and I at a similar age too. I don’t think there’s much you can do really other than try and support both individually.
For me it was a combination of hormones and trying to assert some responsibility over my life, plus my dad had some very annoying habits! And for my dad I guess it was like having an alien in the house who no longer did as she was told, didn’t look or act like a little girl any more, and voiced an opinion on things he’d previously got away with.

Dancergirl Tue 13-Mar-18 13:37:46

Last night they clashed as she was stretched out on the sofa, making it difficult for him to sit down. Your daughter sounds the entitled one in this

Agreed spirit but it was the way dh spoke. He hates anyone stretching out on the sofa, even if they're alone! He made dd feel it was a weird thing to do.

Bahhhhhumbug Tue 13-Mar-18 13:41:49

Having been a stepmum to a teen and knowing how hard l found it, l can relate to how annoying it is when you go to sit down on the settee in your own home and there's a sprawling (over 6ft in my case) teenager who is unwilling to move or doesn't see the problem. Add to that they are not yours and you feel unable to just move them along with a jovial 'budge up' because you get a hostile response from them and then a parent jumping in sticking up for them (not saying you do this but in my case DH was always 'monitoring' whether l said one negative word to his precious Ds)
So in your Op example l can see your DPs side and how his hands are tied and ime teenagers know this only too well and will play up more to that person. In other examples maybe it's your DPs fault but l do know it is a difficult situation, stepfamilies can be in any event but throw teenagers into the mix......

Dancergirl Sat 17-Mar-18 09:01:11

bringme how and when did it improve with your dad?

We had a bloody awful dinner last night, dd was pretty unpleasant and dh is almost too scared to say anything at all. Feeling very sad today sad

junebirthdaygirl Sat 17-Mar-18 09:26:50

Even if someone is depressed they have to have manners and behave properly. Teens will often push things as far as they get away with. I would have words with dd and tell her you expect proper behaviour at the table and respect for dh . That age is particularly difficult but she will take any advantage of a weakness on either side. Tell her you are sick of it and don't want to listen to her or dh anymore . You have a life too. Sometimes its no harm to let rip and say...l have enough of this. I'm tired after a busy day so l need peace. Knock it off right now or go into another room to fight. Im not listening to it anymore. Shock them both as it can become a nasty habit. When she sees you don't rush in to save her she may stop.

Appuskidu Sat 17-Mar-18 09:30:33

Last night they clashed over dd stretching out on the sofa making it difficult for dh to sit down.

That’s pretty entitled of her!

If, as you say-he doesn’t like people lying down though-that’s just weird. Can you unpick that one with him? Why doesn’t it bother him?

What does he do that makes her think he’s entitled and annoying? Entitled is an unusual way to describe a parent?

user1494670108 Sat 17-Mar-18 09:43:45

Agree with pps, the sofa thing sounds like a power struggle and dd should not come out with the upper hand regardless of hormones/ depression/ exam stress etc. Think forwards to her sharing a house with others, as a student eg. No one wants to live with the entitled one - the accusations she's giving him are a mirror to her own behaviour

whampiece Sat 17-Mar-18 09:46:07

Everyone blaming her. Putting her down because she is a child and should automatically be respectful!

My take is that actually DH needs to sort HIS attitude out. You have an already struggling teen who needs support, not nagging for minor things.

I would try and encourage them to go out and spend some time alone together to try and get some sort of a bond rather than a constant battle.

Often dropping the tug of war rope is the best way to restart things and build better relationships.

Simply saying she is a child and should not have any opinion of her own is ridiculous.

Dancergirl Sat 17-Mar-18 10:08:40

What does he do that makes her think he’s entitled and annoying? Entitled is an unusual way to describe a parent?

app she's become pretty political lately and has strong views on many issues, feminism, racism, transgender issues and so on. She is quite down on straight, white males of which dh is one! I don't think dh is racist or homophobic (we've been married 20 years) but if she picks up even a hint of anything like that from him, she'll come down on him like a ton of bricks.

wham I don't think dh has a bad attitude. Other than the sofa incident, where he could have worded it a bit better, he is making an effort to do and say the right thing. But dd just rolls her eyes or jumps down his throat.

NathusiusPip Sat 17-Mar-18 10:09:30

Putting her down because she is a child and should automatically be respectful!

She should automatically be respectful! Bloody hell, no wonder there are so many rude and entitled young people around when parents have this attitude!

Dancergirl Sat 17-Mar-18 10:13:58

I do agree pip

wham nobody is saying she shouldn't have an opinion of her own, we listen to her views and take them seriously. But she isn't being respectful of others' views.

Celticlassie Sat 17-Mar-18 10:16:31

EVERYONE should be bloody respectful of the people they live with. It sounds like your DH is trying to be respectful to her, so she should be trying to be respectful back.

As soon as I saw the word 'entitled' I knew it would be this 'woke' political nonsense that's created this notion. Her father is a straight, white man - there's not a lot he can do about that.

MurielsBottom Sat 17-Mar-18 10:37:22

It does sound like your dh is trying to navigate the relationship with his teenage dd and the times they disagree you are taking your dd's side. I think pp are correct in that you need to firstly explain to your dd that she does need to respect her parents and that you aren't going to get in the middle of their arguments anymore.
I also think you need to give a more united front with your dh, as your OP gives the impression you are siding with your dd more.

whampiece Sat 17-Mar-18 10:51:28

She should automatically be respectful! Bloody hell, no wonder there are so many rude and entitled young people around when parents have this attitude!

I strongly disagree with this generally. While I admit I may have read the posts incorrectly, and the DH in this situation is actually not being an arse, some parents are absolutely vile to their DC. Respect should never be automatic simply because a child is younger than a parent. Teaching our children to respect their elders for no reason other than they are elder can put them in a really vulnerable position.

RebelRogue Sat 17-Mar-18 11:47:36

Regardless of her issues there should be basic respect and consideration shown to her father and you regardless which class you belong to.

Bringmewineandcake Tue 20-Mar-18 23:13:34

Dancergirl our relationship didn’t improve until I went to university and lived away from the family home. Some distance helped us to become cordial again but we’re not close. I get a stilted hug at the end of visits if I instigate it, my daughters both get offered hugs and kisses sad

Orangettes Wed 21-Mar-18 20:18:24

I don't think I'd describe my nearly 15 year olds as children - they are responsible in law for quite a lot of what they do.....they don't just become adults over night and the awakening of their beliefs is normal and often collides with their parents....that is normal!
Respect can never be demanded - it needs to be earned and if you don't feel it, you don't feel it - maybe you fake it, but you live with people and you should be civil for the sake of everyone's happiness. Your dh and your dd have issues that need to be worked through, I expect time with resolve them and maybe you could help by providing the other's point of view and not taking sides. Your dh could take this as an opportunity to show your dd how adults deal with conflict - what do you think simply saying simply I'm the parent and you'll do what I say teaches her about how to succeed as an adult?

YippeeTeenager Mon 26-Mar-18 10:30:16

PP, I’m going through the same thing at the moment with DH and DD and it’s awful. Communication has nearly broken down between them and it’s getting to the stage where I can’t leave them alone together without a major upset or row ensuing. Dd now saying she hates being at home. Feel so miserable and torn between them both, I really don’t know what to do.

PingPongBat Sun 01-Apr-18 21:29:31

DH has no idea how DD (16) works either. I favour the ‘softly softly’, pick your battles approach, whereas he’s more Victorian dad / all guns blazing (I’m exaggerating a bit here, but not much!). One monute she's sweetness & light, the next she's raging & all "don't speak to me".

About a year ago DH decided to take step back from anything discipline related & things have been calmer. He still has a tendency to say completely the wrong thing - the other day DD told me she'd got 35% in a mock & was clearly very upset as she thought she'd done much better. I told DH in the hope he would tread carefully - & his first words to her (in front of her BFs family) were “so, I’m not supposed to ask you about your mock, am I?” hmmangry)

I find I do a LOT of listening to DH & DD (separately) when they are angry/sad/upset after a clash, but I try not to worry about it too much any more (with varying degrees of success!). They do bond occasionally over a pizza smile so I hang on to those moments to remind myself they do love each other really

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