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Control My Emotions!

JAMS2011's picture

My step daughter is now 5 years old with the brain of an 8 year old. Smart wonderful beautiful little girl. Lately when she comes over she picks on her two younger half sisters. I know part of this is her age but this past weekend she kept telling me how much money her mom had and how her mom had so much more money than we did and her mom had all these things that we didn't have. She said at "her house" and "at home" and "where I live". It just took me back. She also talked about how everything we had for her was trash. TRASH!! Now I don't have a ton of money but the things I buy are not TRASH especially now the warm winter coat or the nice tennis shoes or the thick get the idea. I blew up on her this weekend only to realize OMG she is only 5 years old. I had just had enough. Her mom does not have money. She lives in a double wide with her mom and dad and her grandmother. They all smoke on her all the time. She does not own a winter coat at that house only the one we bought for her. She has every toy that Walmart sales but her clothes always smell like smoke. She wears leggings to school almost every day of the week and sometimes her hair is not even brushed.

How can I handle this better? I felt so terrible for blowing up on her like that but I can't take the ungratefulness all of the time. Seriously...her mom could buy her toilet paper and it would be the best toilet paper you ever did see but we buy her a $50 coat and it's trash.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated!


JAMS2011's picture

Maybe that's the case. Like she is defending her mom or something. I just don't see how you are either 1. better than me and have better things than me all of the time or 2. you are so poor and pitiful and we are rude for having more than you.
Seriously, it is constantly one thing or the other! I know it's not the 5 year olds fault...I just want to help teach her in a loving and kind way that isn't how the world works.

SadFairy's picture

Even at 5, you can still be obnoxious and you should still be held accountable. Your husband (or you if you are comfortable) needs to address this and quickly. If she's insulting you at 5, what level is the disrespect going to reach at 13?

Can you give her a warning that her nastiness isn't going to be tolerated? If she does it again, give her a consequence? Will your DH support giving her a punishment?

This also made me wonder if she is regurgitating what BM is saying about your household?

JAMS2011's picture

I normally am able to keep my cool about it with this little phrase "that is wonderful"
Because it's a neutral statement. Not sarcastic. Not real. But positive enough.
It just gets irritating when they start to be ungrateful for the things you do. I was so angry! I told her fine you think that coat is trash leave it at home this weekend and you can freeze all week at your moms house. I know her mom has no money. She tells us ALL of the time how we need to pay more child support and "support" the children he already has before having anymore children.
There has to be a positive way to handle it. A loving approach that will teach her how human beings should act. She has so much potential to be amazing.

Generic's picture

Can you just nonchalantly explain or point to the fact that it's not polite to talk about money? I have a two girls and they will sometimes try to talk about how much something costs or if someone is rich or not. That's when I kind of do this little "OOPS I forgot" face and "remind" them that talking about money is impolite. Kind of like," oooh I forget too and it's hard to remember!" Do a little surprise mouth and cover with hands look.

If she's ungrateful for the coat, you can also remind her that when receiving something from someone, you respond to the spirit in which it was given. The only appropriate response is "Thank you". You can think all the things in the world you want, but the only thing you can SAY is "Thank You". We've recently had this reminder with Christmas gift exchange. Smile 5 year olds need reminding.

JAMS2011's picture

I couldn't agree with you more. It's a humility thing. No one should be judged on how much money they do or don't have. No one should boast if they get a large tax return or if their swimming pool is as big as their double wide. Most of the people I know who REALLY do have money and very nice things don't judge, or boast, or bully, or taunt. They are grateful because they worked hard to earn it or because they have seen their parents work hard to get it.

ctnmom's picture

You don't have to get into details when you're setting up house rules. Everyone in your house should treat each other with respect; my kids weren't allowed to be shitty to each other. Of course they had typical sibling stuff, but I din't tolerate meanness. Maybe when she is on one of her "how great the trailer is" rants, gently tell her it's rude to brag and thats enough of that talk for now. And a smart 5yo can be taught what is proper behavior towards siblings. Set the rules now for a peaceful (sort of lol) future!

JAMS2011's picture

What methods can I use to enforce it? I don't want to be constantly disciplining her and not playing with her at all. I want her to enjoy coming over but I put her in time out one time until she would say sorry and she sat there FOR THREE HOURS. Wouldn't say sorry! It was unbelievable.
Most of the time all the girls are loving with each other. my Daughter (3) LOVES her so much and wants to be around her all the time. She doesn't realize some of the stuff that SD is doing mainly because she is so young.
What forms of discipline do you use?

JAMS2011's picture

It is a long time which is why I was like WTF this is the easiest thing you have EVER had to do in order to get out of time out just say your sorry. She wouldn't. Refused! However, I know FOR A FACT that MIL, SILs, and BM never apologize for anything ever. They are never wrong and they never say sorry. If they ever get caught doing something wrong they just get quiet. My SD does this same thing and I want to nip it in the bud but I just don't know how.

JAMS2011's picture

For the record she did much better this weekend! yay!! I couldn't have been more proud. Maybe blowing up on her wasn't so bad after all. She acted sweet with her sisters and appreciated things a little bit more. I hope we never have another horrible weekend again! She still said a few things but most of it seemed made up anyway. It is getting better all of the time.