(Closed) Is there any hope with my steps kids?..bit long

posted 8 years ago in Family
Post # 3
Member
2790 posts
Sugar bee

First of all what does being bi-racial have to do with the story? I missed that?

Second off, I’ve been there. I was that girl and I am not always proud of how I acted. Step families, siblings, parents, etc. are tough and really confusing for everyone involved. My dad and step mom were together for 10 years and we were close in the begining around the time I was 11 and as I grew up the relationship declined. Your 16, you think your really mature but not always, you want to be your own person but your still looking for attention from both your parents, and often times your operating under 2 sets of rules. I think that there is obviously more going on here than you may be saying but families are complicated.

Do you think she is looking for more attention and time with her father? My father and i fought for a long time about how he blamed me for only calling when I wanted money and I said that he didn’t love me and felt like he loved my step mom more and gave her more time and attention. We fought and fought about it and once my dad finally realized that I didn’t want him to tell me how to live my life but to be there to listen to me it stopped being about money and started being about how I needed someone I felt was on my side.

You should talk to your Fiance about this more in depth. This girl is growing up with a lot of people in her life and obviously I don’t know how the seperation of her parents went but those issues linger for so much longer than you would expect. I think that it may hurt her feelings even more to be completely left out of your wedding and may damage the wedding further. I would have completely believed my father had stopped loving me had they not included me at all. Remember what you were like at age 16 and then think about a whole extra person besides your parents in the mix who is expected to be a type of authority to you. Tread carefully but try to get along. It may take more time than you thought.

Post # 6
Member
379 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2011

You cant do anything about another grown adults bad behavior.  Luckily you FI  sounds like a great guy who wants to have a relationship with his daughter but still puts you first.  I would just let it go.  You and your Fiance sound like you are already making the best of the situation.

Post # 7
Member
7975 posts
Bumble Beekeeper

Wow, her mom is on her fourth marriage? With half and step siblings all over the place, your step daughter (to be) is probably just really emotionally worn out from trying to build relationships with people only to see them end. I’m sure some of her other step parents have not been as supportive as you are!

I would guess that she has a lot of underlying, possibly unacknowledged pain and has put up a lot of walls against getting close to people (like you, and even her father) or relying on them emotionally.

As a parent, really the biggest thing I think you can do is to love her unconditionally. Not give give give unconditionally, but to accept her, not let her poor decisions affect how you treat her (i.e. don’t stop inviting her), and just keep doing all you can to show her that you still care about her, on an emotional level. Again, I am NOT saying to give in to all her ridiculous demands (like driving 600 miles to bring her somewhere). You can only hope that in time, she’ll mature and grow through the pain, hopefully get some counseling to deal with all the baggage in her past, and come around to spending time with you again.

Post # 8
Member
466 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: April 2011 - Sweet ceremony by the sea and sunset celebration on the North Shore of Hawaii

big hugs to you, @mrstobeeisme. family conflict is always tough and exhausting and i applaud you for making an effort after all this time.

your wedding should be one of the happiest times of your life. i would say “leave the door open” for your stepkids – invite them to family gatherings, but nothing more than that. you deserve to be happy too!

Post # 10
Member
2321 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: July 2011

OMGosh! You took words right out of my life! Except that I am going through this with my Future Sister-In-Law and not an SD. (And mine is 18+ now in uni. Hopefully she will pick up some useful people skills there that will not only help her with personal relationships but also professional ones.)

It is true that her parents had a nasty marriage too, just like your SD’s, and are now separated. These kids definitely will have issues, but you need to start taking responsibilities for your own actions (especially if you are an adult!), rather than blaming your parents’ failed relationship for your b*tchiness! When she was much younger, she built a solid relationship with her SIL (other bro’s wife). Over time, this SIL decided to distance herself and her nuclear family from the rest of their family because of their behaviour.

What I have found useful is to lower your expectations of her behavior. Don’t expect her to behave like a nice, polite, caring family member. To her, she is not a family member. She feels like a useless cog in the wheel. Family members will come and go in/out of her life and she does not feel the need to be close to anyone. Why bother if they will leave or distant themselves? It’s REALLY HARD to lower your expectations this much of a family member, especially one that you want to build a close relationship with. But you gotta do this for your own sanity. Do not offer to spend time with her, do things with her, hang out with her, etc. Make yourself available and her aware of the fact that you are and will ALWAYS be ‘there for her’. Then let her come to you if she wants.

Whenever I had offered to do all of the above, she would act like a total jerk (as how you described your SD.) When I backed off, she would find ways to contact me: FB, MSN, and the classic: ‘accidentally’ sending ME txt msgs which are meant for someone else.

My Future Sister-In-Law (and the rest of my FI’s family) do take major advantage of my Fiance just like how you described yours. He has learned from how MY family behaves and interacts with each other, how a real family should be. In fact he is so into MY family that he is constantly over and mingling with them. I encourage him to hang out with his own or us hang out with them, but he only saves that for occassional visits because deep down he knows that they use/abuse him, rather than be a family. Your Fiance will hopefully come to such realization on his own by seeing you and your family members in action.

I  have said too much. Embarassed

Post # 11
Member
1088 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2010

Ok let me first of all say that you are doing a really good job just because you really seem to care. LOTS of step parents give up, and too quickly.

My parents divorced when I was 5. I didn’t get along with any of my mom’s bfs, she was engaged twice, remarried once. The first guy I literally told “you won’t last long” and that he wasn’t worth being a part of our family. I was 16. This man eventually, after years, won my approvval and became like a father to me. The second man, my mom’s now ex, NEVER tried to get along with us. I could never respect him for that. he obviously never loved my mom.

My dad is also remarried and I know he’s had a hard time with his step kids. I really think he still has a hard time (I think it’s been about 5 years). But, little by little, things are getting better. But, you have to be patient with the kids (teenagers and young adults especially). I’m 26 now and I couldn’t be more happy for my mom if she finds someone great for her. I love my stepmom and totally am ok with any SO’s in their lives. But, this took time. I really think a lot of teens have a lot of jealousy, need attention, and find it hard to accept new people (especially if they still feel hurt from divorce or if they feel they don’t get enough attention from their father/mother). My advice would be to not be too pushy, but continue to love them and find ways where they can bond with their father. Once they see that you love their dad, and you want them to have a good relationship with him, they will maybe open up… sometimes it takes forever. Not trying to sound negative but this is a really sensitive subject for step kids. I think they really just want to feel loved, and not like their parents are being “taken away from them”. Teenagers are always full of drama πŸ™‚ Not sure if this helps, but wanted to offer you my perspective.

Post # 12
Member
1088 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2010

@mrstobeeisme: Oh one more thing, have you ever had a one on one with her? Like just saying “I would like to get to know you and spend more time with you, if you would let me” something like that. You might get rejected, but I wonder if she might look back and realize that you do care. It really seems like she just wants attention. Been there πŸ˜‰

Post # 13
Member
1088 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2010

@ddw: Totally agree.

Post # 15
Member
7694 posts
Bumble Beekeeper

Oh, that sounds really great!  πŸ™‚

Post # 16
Member
7975 posts
Bumble Beekeeper

I’m glad to hear she has opened up a bit!! I hope she continues to do so. πŸ™‚ Just keep being patient with her, she may open and close in waves, because pain is a tough cycle to break!

Good job loving on her!!! You’re an awesome parent and it’s great that you are willing to work through this tough situation. πŸ™‚

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