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downtrodden's picture

I have been married for about 1.5 years to a man with a daugther from a previous marriage. She lives with her mother and visits us on designated breaks. Her mother is a very "hands off" parent who would rather ignore her daughter than raise her. When I married this man, I informed him that I, by choice, did not date men with children because I drama created from the dynamics of the parental bermuda triangle. He told me that he was civil with the mother and promised no drama. What a crock. That is all it has been. I care about this man and feel badly for his daughter, but am growing weary of the drama. She is 8 and her latest stunt was manipulating her father to call the police on her stepfather for alleged domestic abuse. Her father tried to ensure that she was telling the truth, and kept with her story,...she he called the local police near where she lives. The sent 2 police cars, a fire responder and an ambulance. When the police arrived...and nearly crashed through her stepfather's front door, the step father and mother had no idea what was going on. Upon examination from the paramedics and an interview of the little girl by the police, we found out..and she later admitted..she made the whole thing up. Her step father nearly went to jail. She has not exibited any remorse or understanding of the magnitude of the lie she told. Her mother and step-father didn't punish fact, they didn't even think about a punishment until we asked what they were going to do so that we could be consistent with her punishment when she came out for her visitation. Single-handedly, the little brat has shattered her father's belief in her, put her step-father's reputation into question, caused problems in her mother's new marriage, and once again interjected more drama into what was an even keel harmony. His daughter is very intelligent and generally a sweet girl, but has many emotional issues. She is adamant in having control and neither of her parents do well to control her. My husband thinks he can control his daughter, but I see her manipulating him. He feels sorry for her much so that he makes allowances for her and often spoils her and is overly permissive. The sun rises and falls in her eyes to him. He gives her lots of latitude and freedom to make whether she wants to finish a discussion where she is being reprimanded,....or not. At 8, I think a child's decisions should be ones like..mac & cheese or hotdog? husband and I have recently bought a house in preparation of starting our own family. I want the larger of the extra bedrooms to be a guest room until the birth of our child. The smaller bedroom would be his daughter's room when she visits. He is arguing this point with me stating that because she's bigger, she should get the larger room. I disagree. For one...there will be 2 adults staying in the guest room when they come and the bigger room would accommodate them better. I also feel that our child will be living in the house 100% of the time while his daughter only visits and will be with us maybe 40% (AT BEST) of the time so that our child should be given the larger room. He is angry with me, and is under the belief that I treat his daughter like a second class citizen and that I am giving her the small room to make her feel like she doesn't matter. I refuse to move from my position. I know this is trivial, but not to me. The facts are that his daughter does not live with us and is with us for VISITS. Our child will be living with us all the time and I think it is unfair to make our child take a smaller room when she/he will be there all the time. What do you think? Am I that far off of center? He is constantly fighting me to make sure his daughters "rights" aren't violated and I just don't know what to do. I don't think that what I am saying is unreasonable, and I have a feeling this is goinb to come to a header and a HUGE fight ending the marriage. He will get angry and walk..not me. Any words of wisdom? He has stormed off to our bedroom and right before he walked off stated that he is having second thoughts of having a child with me now. I simply told him that I can't help the way I feel and I doubt it will change. I can't win for losing with this man. And I"ll be damned if I will allow him to continually give in to his daughter's "princess" ways.


smcpaw2's picture

Sounds all too familiar. I think children learn to manipulate their parents at an early age. It is up to the parents to learn to discipline early and often for this manipulation. Once a child has control, they continue to get better at it. My stepdaughter was in the car the night we went to look for a Christmas tree (mind you we had to wait until almost 8:00 p.m. because she wanted to have her boyfriend come with us [myself, my boyfriend, my daughter and his daughter]only to find out he was coming after all). On the way home she wanted to know if she could have coffee when we got home. Her father said no. She continued to tell us how her mother allowed her to drink coffee and went on and on in the backseat. When my daughter asked why she kept insisting on having coffee, which she proceeded to make at 9:30 p.m. at night, she told my daughter she hates when her father tell her no and she is the boss... It causes a great deal of stress between my boyfriend and I, but you have to persevere and keep you relationship with your husband strong. Children often to try break up a relationship because they feel threatened. You must always demand respect from your stepdaughter when she is at your home or soon she will be controlling you as well. Good luck.

Dawn-Moderator's picture

Hi, and Welcome!

I will say that I don't like all of the drama either. Even though there was drama even before I married my husband, I just didn't know how much worse it could get. You are really never prepared for some of the things that come up.

I agree with you about kids making decisions. I keep reminding my stepson that he doesn't get to decide that, when he tries making decisions that adults should make.

Now, with the room situation, I can see both sides of this. Especially if there is a huge difference in the size of the rooms. Keep in mind that a baby won't need such a huge room. Also, you may want to think about which room is closer to your room. You may want the nursery to be the closest room.
If you still want to give your future child the bigger room, then maybe you should try and make your step daughter's room extra special. Maybe involve her in redecorating it to how she would like.

Just some ideas.


downtrodden's picture


thanks for the thoughts and words. I have entertained that idea. The rooms are noticeably different, although not a huge difference. The one I want for the guest room/baby room sits at the front of the house and overlooks the street. It has a smaller closet, but a bit more living space. It has more windows and closer to the top of the stairs and farther from the bathroom and study where noise could be generated from. The smaller bedroom sits directly across from the bathroom and has more privacy from the public. It has one window that faces the golf course (we live on golf course community). It has a larger closet (walk in)and is right next to our study. I still believe my decision is the appropriate one. She is a part time resident at the home, she keeps much less there than the baby will have...PLUS, when we have guest visiting it is usually 2 adults. She is one small child and I feel that the smaller room would be fine for her considering how much time she actually spends with us. The baby will have equipment that will need to be stored there, and toys. Storage is not plentiful in the new home.

I would be happy to have the room made special for her, but the husband is demanding the larger room. I know it will probably erupt, but I will be the one there when the furniture arrives...and will most likely direct them to the smaller room when they bring her stuff up. He over does it with her because he feels that she has such a hard life living with her mother and her millionaire step-daddy. I feel that I am losing control of OUR life to his desperation to make up for what he views as "his little girl in trouble". His exo-wife does a lousy job parenting..both of them would rather be out playing together than take time to raise the daughter, but the ex has custody. I am sure she has a lovely room back home...I don't understand why she must have the biggest and the best at both residences. Her permanent residence is with her mother. I am sure that she has a great room there. I feel that I must not budge on this and stand firm on this decision. If he pushes past me and gives his daughter that room, I will see that and him putting his immediate family second and I will harbor a resentment that may eventually kill the marriage.