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Lunchtime Buffet

CLove's picture

A little update, a little venting, some cold reality as well as some flat out grouchieness for dessert.

So, its been a little bit of time, and Sd16 yr 2.5 months B/M still has not gotten another job (recall I got her a super way easy job selling a sauce at a farmers market that she did with Toxic Troll, but that somehow went away), she lazed away the whole summer, sometimes going to the cold beach with her friend whose parents are living out of a hotel (yep smh) and well, she spent 4 weeks doing summer school, and got a b, luckily because she tried to finish it at midnight of the last day and boo hoo the system locked her out for some reason.

So, still no real repercussions. They SHOULD have said "nope", because she spent almost next to no time on it and still couldnt be bothered to finish and she took it because the d from deciding not to complete the last assignment. But whatever, not my deal and not my pickle. Things will eventually "get real" and then no sympathy from me at all.

And now here we are and only 2 more school years to go, the true countdown begins - 1 year and 9 months and then...what? With her current pathway I do not see any indpendent launching, I dont really see a college launch (maybe CC) and that leads me to the next update/vent...

I helped her sign herself up for driving permit online class, with her money from job I helped her get...and she tells me that shes on chapter 10 out of 11. That was before summer started right after she turned 16 in I guess not that bad, its good for 8 months, so 6 more to go...before she has to start all over again. And this time, no appealing to the teachers, no crying to whomever, because at this point shes "laming out of" it.

I figure, if shes not mature enough to get a permit, shes not mature enough to drive! Easy! And if she turns 18 and still no driving, well I can imagine she will have to figure out a new excuse..and no more repercussions of Toxic Troll if I say something. And the driving will necessitate a car provided by Husband, and insurance provided by husband, so needless to say it would necessitate a job, and I keep hearing "noises" about looking. The job market for workers is still super super hot, like scalding HOT. Minimum 17$ hourly going up to 24$. But still crickets chirping is louder than anything Im hearing about a j-o-b. 

So, it really irks me, that at the age of 16 plus 2 months, I dont see any progress towards these two very important milestones towards increase of independance. And now the whole question of "she hits 18 and graduates in 1 year 9 months and then..."

It irks me that she will do a chore that shes supposed to do anyway, and gets 20 bucks to go to the movies. And has minimal chores (do your own dishes, pick up dog doo one day out of the 7) and still manages to spend all her visitation time on the phone in her room or at her mothers doing whatever and comes back with super bleached hair. And I cook and she pops her head out and shovels my food onto HER plate. Like shes 12, and not 16. I was super grouchy last night. I made a fish plate at a late hour, and thats when she suddenly needs a second dinner. So, grouchy pants came out and that irks husband. oooohhhh welllllll! Which is why I rarely cook when Child is there. She generally eats leftovers and scraps by herself anyway. I figured out finally that she doesnt necessarily WANT to eat dinner with us at the dinner table together. She will be silent and sulk and pout. I learned that is called Toxic Passivity. So now we just let her know its ready and she can choose when to eat as long as she cleans up.

I didnt have an issue with that when she would come out sometime between 8-9:30 but somehow anytime after 9:30 irks me. Im just an old grouch I guess. For me, if Im going to work for it, shop for it, prepare and cook it, I want anyone else to join me if they are at all interested in eating it, and Id think some appreciation wouldnt be too far off also. 

Otherwise, these little things aside, all is much better. I have developed a solid group of awesome women (some men too) and go out a lot to live music and local events. SD16 needs to figure out her own social life, I am no longer taking her places, no lunches, or salon, or shopping, its all for me now and it feels grand. Ive started hiking and have been invited to hiking club. Ive been called 'inspirational" and "bada$$". Husband does his fishing, and SD either goes with friends or stays home like she normally does on a daily basis. I told her many times that I would support her if she got a job and help her out. But...crickets and beach and hair bleach...ok, I am chasing my tail on this topic.


advice.only2's picture

It’s really interesting to see how little your DH seems to care or interact with her while she is there.   I mean really he puts in bare minimum parenting, you can’t expect maximum output from the kid when she gets half a$$ed or barely that from each parent.   I know it’s very hard and frustrating for you to be hands off about it when you see she could have so much more….but as this site likes to point out, you can’t care more than the parent.

If it makes you feel better my BS had to take summer school one semester for failing trig.  He said the class was a joke and the teacher had them watch movies all day.  They were given worksheets and as long as they handed them in they passed.

BD16 dragged a$$ getting her learners permit and we hounded her about finishing the online course.  Because she dragged a$$ she was in danger of not having her license start of her junior year and having to take the bus.  BD also has zero clue about what she wants to do after high school.  We recommend to her to start looking into the ASVAB to help or sitting down with her school guidance counselor…so far she’s done nothing.

CLove's picture

I tease him and call him the Disney Dad or the Warehouse parent. Hes ok with that. "At least shes with us and not her mother or her sister". When asked why he doesnt "try". He responds with "look I tried with Feral Forger, her mother blocked me the whold way, and look how that went...Im TIRED". We are in mid 50's, so that makes a point...

yeah, I just need to let it all go and continue being happy being me...

JRI's picture

Clove, you know I raised 2 bios and 3 SKs, right?  If Munchkin was living at my house in those days, she would have fit in with no problem.  Perhaps I had a low bar but it was the norm for teenagers to be lazy, not want to eat with us, squeeze by on their grades and avoid work.  I know there are families with better parents and more motivated kids, Im just telling it like it was.

Perhaps, like our kids, Munchkin will slowly mature and ease into her adult life.  None of our 5 are Nobel Prize winners but, except for SD60, they are living independent adult lives, they are good parents and self-supporting.

The teen years are maddening.  You are on the right track to be focusing more on yourself and realizing we step-parents have very little power.  I'm betting she will slowly mature, perhaps not meet your best expectations, but do okay.

CLove's picture

And my blood boils about SD60.

Yes, I can imagine being her bio parent rn, how fustrating. Thats why I continue doing my own thang. Just got an SUV to do some camping, biking and more trips in. They can stew in their own juices. I will get through this sanity intact.

Thanks Biggrin

grannyd's picture

Yeah, JRI, 'ol girl,

We're both 77 years old, have been around the block a few times and wear the scars necessary to have gained a little wisdom. I love reading your (often droll but always sensible) comments and this one is a real keeper. Clapping


CLove's picture

Love the wealth of knowledge and calmness when Im freaking out or wringing my hands in frustrations.

Rags's picture

Keeping the burning platform stoked to singe his tail feathers enough to get him to launch worked well for us.

He really is doing very well as an adult.  Though there were a few phases of hte teen years that he nearly did not survive.  Fortunately for him, when I was ready to strangle him, his mom asked that we give  him one more day, when she was ready to strangle him, I asked for one more day.

He is doing great now.  12 years after he launched. Now that he is 30, we probably will let out a sigh of relief.

For a while any way.

CLove's picture

keep reading on here to see all the possibilities. Thats maybe whats getting me down. Just holding my breath for another failure to launch kid.

I hate to say this, but part of my angst is that I am going through all this and there is zero reward. Like no internal bio parent "I done good by my kid". Just a big zero.

JRI's picture

This is one of those situations in life where we have to give ourselves credit because no one else will.  So, if you can look in a mirror and say, I did my best, that's the most you can do.  It's like being a good supervisor, or a good worker, or a good driver or a good citizen.  Nobody's going to give you recognition altho all those things are important.

MissK03's picture

More and more teens seem not interested in a license... it makes absolutely no sense to me but it's definitely a thing. 

My friends and I all got our license. There wasn't any of us not driving right when we were able too. SS17 graduated this past year (so on the young side) and there are STILL some kids that don't drive. Some got theirs more recently. SS17 had a car and license before his friends who were months older.. 

Strange world lol. 

caninelover's picture

Like MissK said it's more typical nowadays.  Teenagers mature slower.  And they connect with friends via social media so are no longer as excited for the independence driving brings.

But - it's such a big life skill I don't get the parents not pushing more.  I get the if they are not mature enough but really they can learn the skill and drive only a little ir not at all after they get their license.  But not getting the license - that I don't get.

And you would think husband would learn the lesson from FF...

CLove's picture

STILL has no license and STILL not driving. Toxic Troll is her happy chauffer.

Livingoutloud's picture

Well she is 16. It's weird age. My DD didn't have a job at 16. She was a good student though so no summer school but she had no job either. She is well adjusted educated professional, she is doing great. I don't think my nephews or niece had a job either. Not at 16. They all launched real well. Very successful. My DD didn't care about license at 16. 

Having said that we didn't ignore DD the way your DH and BM do. I think that's where the issue is. No guidance. No role modeling and not much of anything. Sounds like they don't take vacations or travel with the kid anywhere ever or take her places. Why can't her dad plan a trip?

I understand not having a job if you are busy with hobbies and playing sports or other stuff or travel with your parents or going to camp. Something. It's not good that she's doing nothing 

CLove's picture

My blog from last years trip with SD16 Backstabber/Munchkin:

He keeps talking abou us going camping or doing something together. Anytime we go anywhere decent even for the day, she acts sullen and like shed rather be anywhere else. That is when its not all about her and what she wants. And then theres always her "im afraid of being bored" comments.

So over the past year, after schoolgate especially after the non-fun trip she spent the whole time on her phone texting or her ipad or whatever...I just totally stopped anything and everything, and I am the planner. Im the social director of the family and specifically stopped including her. 

Yeah. No hobbies, no nothing. Just a big boring zero.

Rags's picture

Though i did not get my DL until I was 18.  Not because I didn't want to get my DL, our living situation did not make it convenient or necessary.

My SS did not get his license until he was 18.  Mostlh for the same reasons I did not get mine until 18.  Though he could have gotten it a bit sooner. He was just not interested.  He also was with us so he did not need to drive.

My younger brother got his DL at 16 as well as a car.  I was irked.  But... when my parents asked if I wanted to schlep he and his friends around, I quickly found clarity on that issue.  i am 6 years hte elder and had little interest in being the Uber for my 16yo brother and his buddies.

CLove's picture

The catering and coddling, leading to stunted growth.

Aniki-Moderator's picture

CLove, I think you need to take a few more steps back. Why didn't your H help her sign up for the driving permit? Why didn't your H help her find a job? His monkey, his circus. And stop looking at those grades lol! *kiss2*

CLove's picture

He always asks me for anything "technical". He asked me to sign her up.

Its her money so if its wasted then its all on her. I did that on purpose knowing shed lame out of it.

caninelover's picture

I think you need to think about what happens after 18.  What are your boundaries there about her living situation?  OK if she works and/or does school full time?  Or not at all anymore?  Wherever you land it's time to hammer things out with DH.

What she does for work or school is not your problem.  Where she lives though is.


CLove's picture

Sort of causally, though.

California is now the 2nd most expensive place to live. Through help with my parents and through luck, we managed to buy the house Husband was renting for a way below market price. I refinanced to get our payment lower. Since I have no kids, I really have no incentive to pay down principal.

Our home has more than doubled in value, and our mortgage with tax is 1/2 what others pay to rent. To move would more than double our housing costs.

So, we are staying put for now until retirement.

That being said, we have talked about possibly getting a roomate  for SD16 B/M's room. Which would pay our housing. Husband is frugal and generally doesnt over pay for anything and when she turns 18 shes sort of on her own. She will make her own way, according to him. But after seeing how he caters and coddles Im not sure. We have to have that conversation.

Ive casually spoken to her about her plans, and she claims she either has to move in with friends or move in with her mother because her mother will disown her if she chooses to live with us.

caninelover's picture

But it sounds like H would follow through.  Though if she starts whining about affordability, who knows, he might cave too.  Very frustrating age!

AlmostGone834's picture

Are you afraid that if you stop doing these things, she's never going to launch? Because no one else is going to push her to do them?

CLove's picture

And will end up just loafing around while I work to support her. Like her sister SD23 Feral Forger.

CLove's picture

That he has cooked with her were very positive. She seems to enjoy it, but I guess I have to suck it up because 16.