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Feeling like the roommate .

Cstep's picture

Hi everyone. I am brand new here . I couldn’t go another day without finding some kind of outlet to talk ... or i might lose my mind . In Feb my step daughter moved in with us (from Vegas to Hawai’i ). We have been married four years , together for six and we have always had her over the summers . Her behavior towards her mom ( in my opinion , due to overindulgence and guilty parenting on both ends) got so bad hat she ended up getting expelled for something SO bad I can’t even post here. So, without me really even being considered - she was sent to live with us. I say that as in no one asked me my opinion - and i guess that’s cause what could I say? Run and ruin my marriage or tough it out the next few years ? Realistically no one would want to be with someone that makes them choose their own child or them, right ? So here we are today . We have ALWAYS had the same issues year after year . Starting on our wedding day and little one in tears because she was visiting us and wanted to sleep with us when she had a family sitter situation set up that night . I KNEW it was going to happen cause dad always gives in and I was not about to show her she would dictate what I do on my wedding night which is the most important day of my life. Of course , dad gets angry with me ... I explode .. she gets dragged off in tears and we don’t speak till the next day . Dad tell me “if I we’re here I would hate you .”... nice huh? We meet her and the family and the beach and she runs straight up to me and hugs me . Sister who was sitting told me she was laughing as soon as she got in their car the night before - so it wa all a battle of who’s is charge and i’m hip to that - cause it’s BLATANTLY clear - even at 8 years old. But dad thinks i’m crazy . That was YEARS ago folks. she’s going on 14! Still the same behavior . Now that she’s moved in , she cries for him to sleep with her . if he happens to fall asleep in our bed , she texts him from her room 100 time in a row ... daddy ... bed is down here ... daddy!!!! until he wakes up and goes downstairs. .if that doesn’t work , she come up here at around 2 am after all her texting buddies have gone to bed crying that she’s scared . Two days ago it was because there was a fly in her room and she was too scared of it . When he said “ i’ll be down” and started dozing , she started making banging sounds on the wall and floor in OUR room?! in the pitch black . He re-awoke and yelled “what are you doing ?!?l” and she said .. “ trying to kill it!” hmmm the FLY that was in her room followed her all the way up to our room and she sees it in the dark ... Or .. daddy is falling asleep and i’m going to cause a loud commotion to wake him up . HELLOOOO DAD .. plain as day! These are the daily things that are overlooked . She makes her own schedule staying up all hours of the night and sleeping till 2-3 pm. Wakes up , get on her phone and invites all her friends over before even asking us . If no one can come , she says she’s SOOOO bored here and blames me for never doing anything to entertain her . She has no slef motivation to do anything except text boys and screw with their feelings - telling her she loves them within hours ... saying she wants to marry them .. asking if she’s pretry , etc .. then dumping them soon after . She even “pranks” boys texting them she likes them ( some being boys that would killl to have ang attention from a girl “ .. then leads them on for a day or two to be them to say good stuff about her and then says “ I was pranking you “.   She told the best friend of her last boyfriend that and he got very embarrassed and angry .. started cussing them out in a group chat . so she told her Boyfriend .... ummm he’s a bad influence so I need you to choose him or me ! He , of course chose her .. I really felt so bad for the kid - he just got duped and now lost his best friend ... totally mean girl situation . When i told dad what she did, he said “ha.. i bet he chose her!” and he thought it was good cause we didn’t think the kid was the greatest ...  but to me , he has FEELINGS like any human being . Dad did scold her for this behavior later on thankfully but I just don’t think she gets it . she is only concerned with herskrf and disregards anyone else’s feelings . Tonight I was picking her up on my way home from a 13 hour day and she texted me she wanted to stay one more hour . Which would mean I would have had to go home and turn right back around - so I explained to her why I wasn’t going to do that and said “negative sorry” when she said ...pllleeeaaasssseee ... So she then goes in to text her dad how I am being MEAN to her and how she doesn’t want to go home because I never pay ang attention to her and she feels invisible . What?!? I work all day and you don’t get your way so you badmouth me to your dad to justify your case !?!  Then tonight we are laying in bed and he says “I have to go sleep with my girl”. I was like ... “are you serious ?”  he said “yea it’s the weekend and she gets me on weekends”. (she created that rule .. but it’s more like everyday anyway. We had argued a few days ago and I sent him a long email about how it makes me feel and how I think it’s bad for her and causing her to need attention from men ... so I thought FOR SURE he would stay in our bed . NOPE. he got the text asking when he was coming down then off he went ... and I just want to cry ... or break something .. anything. I want my feelings dj matter . He has had blinders on for years and he’s really like a pit bull like I am attacking her . Meanwhile I feel like i’ve pointed out things time and time again he never listens to until he finally gets bit in the ass and has a major melt down.. meanwhile i’m like “ummmm yea . i’ve been saying that would happen for years .  Now i guess something happened and they are arguing cause he just texted me from downstairs that “ for your information .. i’ll be sleeping in the guest room. “ WHF is happening ?! I need help. I love him and he’s so caring and nurturing and he is a warmer person that me ( very lovey dovey when I am not) but I don’t know if I can take four or more years of this. I don’t get to parent .. my feelings don’t matter when it comes to her ... when I try to disengage , I get told how I don’t even try and ihiw he wishes I would mother her . I own a business and I do work a lot . He works nights so it’s just her and I all night when she’s finally UP and wants to be entertained . When he’s home he’s never doing a anything with her - he’s always out tinkering with his car . So i’m the bad guy?! sorry for the long story guys... i’ve been needing to talk for years and I feel like talking to my mom anymore is just making her dislike him, friends too. How can he not see this obvious bad behavior that’s going to slap her in the face as an adult ? It’s so clear to me but I get told “ you don’t know cause you don’t have a kid” .. and if I use others we know that agrees with me or say something like “everyone thinks so” , he explodes and says “I don’t know why you say shit like that cause it makes me want to do even the more opposite . f*** everyone else”. he tells me it always slaps me in the face when i try to bring up other people . But the crazy thing is they ALL KNOW and talk about it on their own but when he confronts them, they say the exact opposite as to not lisa him off . Making me look like a huge , sensitive liar . The aunts talk to me about her because of how she acts when she’s with them ... then tell him she’s an angel. I DONT GET IT !!! Please help with some good advice .... 


Areyou's picture

She’s a budding histrionic. Look up the definition. It will only get worse. You need to frame it as a mental illness for your husband. You both need to help her. She needs therapy big time.

ndc's picture

I am so sorry you're going through this. You are being treated terribly by both your husband and his daughter.  They both sound like they have serious issues and need major help. I don't really have any advice. I would have left after the wedding night, to be honest. It was apparent then how things would be going.  

Curious Georgetta's picture

judgement. Her manifestations and symptomatic behavior should not be  the grist that grinds your rumor mill. 

If what ever happened with the Mom was so bad that it cannot be mentioned, there was evidence then that this child needed help.

She is being failed by all of the adults in her life.  Quite likely this child  is the victim of her own illness. Rather than recognizing that this child needs  treatment, the adults in her life are casting themselves as victims and wanting to pass this child around as if she were just some behavioral irritant.

If she had leukemia or cancer, you would not call the various friends and relatives to discuss her symptoms. 

The discussion that should be going on is not happening. The discussion should involve the next steps for getting this child to see a psychiatrist or a psychologist.

SteppedOut's picture

It sounds like OP knows this, but she is unable to do anything about it because she is "not the parent" and her father is not willing to believe anything is wrong with his daughter. (Sound familiar CG??)

OP, I am sorry, but you have 2 options. Leave or deal with her and her behavior forever (it will not end when she is 18). I am saying this because you have tried and tried and tried to get your husband to understand, but he won't. He thinks shes perfect just how she is. 

Cstep's picture

Believe me , I have addressed the therapy issue also for quite a while now . It infuriates him. Only when she did this bad thing did he say once “ maybe she needs therapy “ and acted like when she got here he would take her. But that never happened and she got a “fresh start “ so he put it , instead of having to learn you have to live with your mistakes and they will follow you around . It’s a cluster*!$ all around . I think she was severely effected by her father and mothers divorce and their guilty parenting and indulging her every whim made her bored with normal things , so she creates things now . Just like celebs getting into drugs cause they have the world already .. what’s next ? 

hereiam's picture

You would not be asking him to choose you over his daughter, just to treat you like his wife and his daughter like a daughter.

Then tonight we are laying in bed and he says “I have to go sleep with my girl”. I was like ... “are you serious?”  he said “yea it’s the weekend and she gets me on weekends”.

So many things wrong with this^^^

If you think this will end in four years, you are mistaken.

CompletelyPuzzled's picture

You are so right. I cringed when I read that he needed to go sleep with his girl. That is wrong on so many levels. If this was my DH, I would refuse to have sex with him. Once he got out of my bed to go to hers, he wouldn't be welcome back.

I agree that this child needs therapy and it sounds like DH does too. OP, you really need to decide what is best for you.  Your DH is refusing to look out for your emotional needs so you are going to have to do it for yourself. I really don't see this ending in 4 years.

Curious Georgetta's picture

no longer comfortable remaining as part of a household in which a child is being abused. Failure to seek treatment for a child when there is evidence of illness is a form of neglect and abuse.

Are you considering having children with this man? Someone who willingly turns a blind eye to the physical and mental well-being of 1 child is unlikely to be vested in the well being of others.


You are not the parent and you have no legal rights to take this child for treatment but as long  you remain .a part of a household where a sick child is being neglected , you are complicit in that neglect.


I would suggest that you consider seeing a therapist to help you sort through your issues related to this situation.


Good luck to all of you.



Cover1W's picture

I agree with several others who already posted. Although you weren't given a choice in your SDs residence, did you sit down with your DH and go over rules, living situation, who does what and who is responsible for doing what and when? If not I would start there. And have YOUR list already memorized...what are you willing to do and what not? 

If your DH refuses to talk with you about it, then I think you have a huger problem than you have even scratched the surface of (it's already huge and you know it).

If you two can come to an agreement you write it down. And if your DH refuses to follow the plan then, again, huge problem. 

You already know you must disengage and tow a hard line on it. Stop looking at her texts immediately. Stop trying to talk or reason with her. Stop trying to talk with DH about getting her counseling. Read all you can about disengagement. 

fustratedintexas's picture

I could not even finish the entire blog. I think you need to get the 3 of you in therapy asap.  Your husband does not want to see it.  I had the same thing with, the STEPSON, 18 year old. He wanted to come along on our honeymoon.  SERIOUSLY?!!! 

HUGS my friend.  If he does not get help you go alone. It will help you deal with them both. 

Step-girlfriend's picture

Holy crap. I’m sorry, but what is wrong with your DH???? Sleeping with a 14yr old daughter instead of his wife?? Sooo messed up. 

3 options: 

1) Continue doing what you’re doing and deal with it (although this really doesn’t seem like an option). 

2) Tell him that you did not sign up to sleep alone in a marriage, and that this WILL change if he would like to stay married (make the list like was mentioned above). Maybe therapy for her (and you both!) is on the list, to minimize future issues of this nature.  

3) GTFO of there. 


Im sorry you are dealing with this, but you are right, he is wrong, no two ways about it. I actually just read a bit of your post to my SO (he has a 9yr old daughter), and he said, are you serious??? Wtf is wrong with him?? So yeah...

Cstep's picture

thank you everyone for your advice . You all said pretty much exactly what I thought you would and what I know but just don’t want to believe . When I tell him I didn’t sign up to sleep alone on my marriage , he says “ why do you even care . You sleep on the opposite side of the bed anyway “ or “ we don’t even touch” ... “ at least SD cuddles me!” .. and it’s true . But I just have a hard time sleeping when im all over someone else so i’m happy to hug for ten minutes then roll over to my side . I’m pretty sure that’s normal and nobody sleeps all entetwined  every night ( and much less doesn’t get offended by it.)  It’s so hard because I have a business I run out of the home we just bought a few years ago . There is no way I would be able to afford staying here and keeping my business afloat - so i also have that to worry about . When she wasn’t living with us , summer progressively got worse but she went home and forgot all about dad .. so we selfishly lived our lives . We are both pretty independent people so we don’t really do too much together , but I never felt like that was a problem really . we still have our times together . It’s just like my parents and my dad went to work at 5 am - 6pm EVERY DAY. My husband uses that at ammo towards me if I say him making me sleep alone makes me feel like a roommate and he says “ you always just WORK and I feel like we are just roommates most of the time “! meanwhile he’s NEVER said this and I never felt like that bothered him that i’m working ( fyi to have a SAVINGS for us because he is now sending his daughter to a private school and that eats every cent he makes . If I don’t work , we will be broke when she gets out of school. Ahhhhh ! 

Exjuliemccoy's picture

No one is parenting this girl, but there is plenty of abuse, neglect, and enabling occurring.

The cosleeping is disgusting and completely inappropriate. Your H is sick in the head to think this " She gets me on the weekend" policy is in any way remotely normal. Hell, none of this is normal. I don't think I could be intimate with a man who does such things. If you want to be savage, ask him if he's using protection since his daughter is a menstruating female who could get pregnant, or how she likes his morning erections. He'll likely become enraged, but at this point, does it even matter?

Some issues are just relationship killers. I know myself, and this would be the end of the relationship for me, because I could not be married to a man so lost to logic and propriety. He is an AWFUL parent, and unequipped to deal with his daughter's myriad issues. To the contrary, he has chosen to become her enabler and engage in toxic behaviors with her.

I would leave, and not only because your H has shat all over your marriage and engaged in behavior so inappropriate that you will likely think of it every time he touches you. No, I'd leave because at 14, that girl is hardbroke and so damaged that she will continue to cause chaos and discord for the rest of her life. She will never be normal, or achieve any of the usual milestones like launching, college, etc. She's manipulative and enjoys toying with others now; wait until she's popped out a few babies and needs somewhere to dump them and/or a constant source of cash. Please read this paragraph several times, because This WILL be your future if you decide you have the stomach to stay.

Create an exit strategy, protect your assets, and get far, far away from that mess. And while you're driving away, call Child Protective Services and get that kid a shot at some help.


CLove's picture

That made my stomach hurl. There is a syndrom called "mini wife", search it on this site, google it, read up on it. It is where the child assumes the role of the fathers wife. It might not be sexual but its a very big deal. Your position of wife has been taken over by this girl-child, and your husband is fully on board with it. That in itself is a toxic situation. Its a form of emotional incest when the father does this willingly and actually encourages it. That is where the child abuse comes in. Research this.

As to not being able to save for retirement with this man. Wow, what is keeping you with him, he sounds terrible! And how you were treated on your wedding day! Deplorable. Do not continue being a doormat, you have a life ahead of you that can be everything you imagine it! Get an exit strategy together, and put money aside for yourself, in a separate account. Get some counseling and talk about the emotional incest happening in your home. Talk about your SD with her issues and in talking about it perhaps you can find tools to become stronger. I do not see your DH changing his ways, your SD changing her ways. She needs far greater help than you can give her alone. He needs far greater help than a simple sit down. You sound lonely in your marriage and that is a terrible way to live, and you deserve better!

Evil3's picture

Don't make the mistake of counting down until your SD is 18. She's not going anywhere. Mini-wives do not launch when their peers do, if ever. My own SD is stb29 and she got worse and worse over the years. It's because mini-wives become more cunning and are much more adept at manipulating. It's also because on some level our DHs know that they screwed up and their guilt increases, so they can't bring themselves to instill boundaries. My SD is almost 29 and is standing around with her thumb up her butt while all of her peers are married, having babies and buying homes. SD is single and has been on about 30 tinder dates and can't seem to land a man, despite really wanting one. She wants so badly to settle down and have kids, but can't seem to. The theory is that mini-wives cannot have healthy adult partnerships like their peers can. It has something to do with enmeshment and the fact that they already have a male fulfilling that role: their daddddddeeeeeees. It's truly disgusting and sickening. My SD has always had this thing about CONSTANTLY testing DH to make sure he is was always able to be diverted from everyone and everything else for her. She constantly needed help doing the most basic tasks and she constantly "tested" DH. Although he passed every test, SD never healed. She was the most fawned on spoiled, coddled child I have ever seen and yet she never healed. Not one iota. She's still every bit that little girl that needs to have Dadddddeeeee all to herself. She never launched until she was 25 and she never got a BF until she was 24. That didn't last, because even when she moved in with him, she'd have Skype open 24/7 to make out like she was still living with Daddddeeeeee. She has to have constant contact with him. She even works for the same orginization as DH and I do and I'm convinced it was to keep tabs on and to stay on our communicator with him 24/7. DH acts oblivious to it.

You can start with your DH by telling him that he can't have it both ways. If your suggestion at therapy for your SD is poo-pooed, tell your DH that you are not willing to be responsible for or dote on a child for whom you can set no limits or have a say in. You have nothing but the best of intentions for both your marriage and your SD and if your DH isn't having any of it, then you are not willing to cater to her entertainment. Tell your DH that if he's not willing to get therapy for his DD that you and he should go for couples counselling. If you want changes, you will have to get brave and turn the tables on your DH. You will have to be ready for the event that you will lose your marriage. You have to stay strong and have consequences if your DH does not make the changes you need to work on your marraige. If you operate from a state of fear of losing your DH, you won't follow through and you won't get the changes you want. I was at the point of being willing to walk away if I didn't get the changes I wanted immediately. I totally turned the tables, but it wasn't until I had one foot out the door and was willing to risk it all.

What your SD did to her own mother is relevant to how far she would go to continue her mini-wife status. If it's of a sexual nature or violent, I wouldn't be so quick to try to work things out with your DH. I personally would not want to live with my DH if my SD was that sick and dangerous. I would not put myself in that kind of danger and I would not put myself at risk of a child making false allegations against me. Move out and date this man only when his DD isn't present. However, if that were me, he'd have to have a hell of a lot going on, if you catch my drift to want to keep dating a man with baggage that involves a crazy, dangerous female.