Behavioral issues with SD. Advice please!
Warning: Long post, but I am looking for advice. I have been with DH for over 7 years now. I thought that being a stepmom would be a walk in the park. However, I quickly realized that is more like a terrible nightmare. My SD lives with her BM in a different state, so we only have my SD for 2 months over the summer each year. However, my SD is about to be 10 and has become very vocal about how she wants to come live with us. Her BM is exhausted because she has a special needs child who is 3 now and requires a lot of attention. My SD is very manipulative and lies repetitively and BM is ready for her to move out. SD told her BM that she wanted to come live with us because she gets whatever she wants at daddy’s house and she doesn’t have to do chores, and it is so much more fun. SD is set to move in with us in October of this year.
For the first few years DH and I were together, SD told me that her mommy and daddy were going to get back together and that I wasn’t really married to her father. Any time we went somewhere as a family, she didn’t want me to go. Everything I did resulted in her saying “Well my mommy…..(fill in the blank).” If I would open the door to get her out of the car, she would want her daddy to do it. She would cross her arms, roll her eyes, and completely ignore me. She demanded things from me and had huge temper tantrums when she didn’t get her way. I literally ended up hiding in my bedroom for about 4 summers in a row because I couldn’t take it anymore. My husband babies her and always gives her whatever she wants. It is as if he has to overcompensate for not being there all of the time. When SD was 7, DH ended up sleeping upstairs with her for the 2 months we had her over the summer because she got upset in the middle of the night and would cry on the stairs. DH and I are on 2 separate pages entirely w/parenting. I would tell SD she couldn’t ride her scooter inside the house. Then DH would let her. She would have the snarkiest look on her face because she still got her way. Also chipped our tile in multiple places because of it. It was a constant battle and I barely spoke to DH for 2 months while SD was living with us.
Last summer, my younger sister who was 14 at the time came to stay with me for the summer. We were moving to a new state and she was going to help me with my daughter who was about 7 months at the time. My SD told my sister that she was not a part of the family and that she needed to sleep outside and could not use the shower or go to the bathroom in the house. She also kicked her repetitively in the ribs because she was mad that she was in our house. DH thinks that all of this is normal “kid behavior”. Meanwhile, I absolutely lost my mind. To add more stress to the situation, SD recently came to stay with us for a few days before my husband left for a long work trip. She peed on our couch in the middle of the day. She didn’t tell anyone about it. She just sat there. Then changed her clothes and went about her business. She is almost 10! I had DH talk to BM about it and apparently this has been going on for the past 3 years and her BM does not let her sit on her furniture at her house because of it. I am scared my SD might do something to my BD because of how crazy her behavior has been. BM was supposed to take SD to an appointment for her daytime wetting, but it has been over 2 months and she still has not done anything.
My main goal is to try to keep the peace between our entire family and make sure nothing happens to BD after SD moves in. DH does not think I have a valid concern because he still thinks there is nothing wrong with SD’s behavior. With all of this being said, I’m terrified of what is to come in the next couple of months after SD moves in with us. I’m bracing for impact right now because I know things are about to get incredibly difficult. I am going to set up family counseling when she moves in and make sure she gets evaluated by a doctor for her issues. I’m exhausted. Has anyone experienced anything similar? Is there any hope? I feel like I can’t keep living like this. I don’t know what to do anymore. I have always had an end date since it was just for 2 months over the summer, but now this is supposed to be a permanent thing. Any advice is greatly appreciated!