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Having a SD is way harder than I thought

Mommiedearest66's picture

My fiancé and I have been together three years now, we met at work and started as a fling, I was 21 when we first met. Then as time went on he saw I was pretty decent with his daughter, I honestly blame that on the fact I have 14 nieces I had to help raise, so yeah I’m okay with kids but after so long I lost traction. When we became serious I just sort of froze up and became my mother with better skin tone. I find myself always mad. Always yelling at my SD for something she forgot, how slow she is (not mentally just like physically the slowest person you’ve ever seen a sloth in human form), for always being on her phone then complaining her head hurts, she never remembers the rules of our house when she comes over every weekend. 

He has full custody but we work early in the morning and can’t make her bus and until she’s old enough to walk to her stop we’re forced to have her go to her BM house during the week. I think a lot of it has to do with her BM always talking trash on us, telling her horrible things about us. But she’s just on a high Christian horse because she’s a recovered meth head and found god. 

She only makes my SD feel shitty about everything she does and yet she continues to praise the ground her BM walks on. No matter what rude things she says to her. I may be mean and ask her to actually do chores and be a able bodied person but at least I don’t comment on her looks and choice of clothes and etc which her mother does constantly! She’s always crying about how she’s mean to her then will ignore it until the next weekend she can complain about her to me. But then all the while she won’t say anything or fight for herself there. But here she will ignore me and be rude to me and just overall acting out. 

Today was the hardest. We got her after work yesterday and I spilled a gallon of milk right when we got in the house, so we had to hurry and put the remaining gallon in another container. I know she has a really BAD habit of opening several containers of the SAME GD THING so I made it a point to say “hey look here, there’s a gallon already open so please use that one and don’t open the other until this is empty.” She acknowledged me and we all went on our way. So come tonight. I go in the fridge for some milk and I see the BRAND NEW EFFING GALLON IS OPEN. Brand new. In the front of the fridge. Mocking me. So I wrap my rage up and stuff it down in my throat and text my fiancé to see if he maybe opened the new gallon. Preparing to ask him why, jokingly of course, and go on about my night  but he replies no he hasn’t touched the milk since we got it. So I now know she did it, she did EXACTLY WHAT I ASKED HER NOT TO. So I go to her room and just ask and she says she hasn’t had any milk at all, so now we have a ghost who opens new milk jugs just to piss me off right? Right. I get a little upset and tell her that she doesn’t need to lie because I already asked her father and then she does it; she shuts down and just stares at me with a blank expression. 

Dear god if I would have looked at my mother that way I would have gotten the attitude slapped right out of me.

i feel myself getting angrier but I stop and just tell her she needs to go to bed, I text my fiancé about it and he is so great right now I swear he is finally getting it. He is going to talk to her and figure out this lying and doing exactly what I say not to stuff. I don’t even know what to do anymore she completely shuts down when we get loud with her at all, she won’t make eye contact and acts like she gets beat, I have NEVER seen him lay a finger on her so that is just ridiculous for her to act like that, I just hope he sticks to his guns and does something about it I’m so tired of feeling like the bad guy who’s making everything up. 

This isn’t the first time either. she has been on this kick of doing things I ask her not to then acting like she forgot I said no, she’s ten years old there is no reason for her to act like an infant, I feel like she knows what she is doing and is doing it to spite me and make me look insane but I finally caught her on something I know she did. I took her phone and am now waiting for my fiancé to get home so we can discuss this further, hopefully at least. I wasn’t that slow at ten and I wasn’t smart either but I did have common sense of what to do and not do. 

It seems like she just wants to be yelled at so her father and I will fight about me being too controlling and she’s just a kid and his baby and blah blah blah, he never sees what she is really doing. She can’t seriously be that forgetful right??? Am I just a psycho SM?!? Ugh  I need help

 

Comments

Just J's picture

I have a 10 year old and they are not that dumb. Mine does his share of things he shouldn't but he gets it when he gets in trouble for something and doesn't do it again. So yes, she should know better, but if daaaadeeeee has any Disney dad tendencies and ignores these things, it's only going to get worse as she gets older.

Sounds like your fiancé is gone while you watch his daughter, am I correct? You should not be doing this. You're not his free babysitter. You say he can't get her to school on time so she goes to BM's. He cannot be with her after school apparently either, so why is she there? What did he do 3 years ago before you were around? He's taking advantage of you. Your fiancé needs to find a different job so that he's not gone nights leaving you to raise his daughter who is disrespectful to you. Luckily it sounds like he doesn't have complete rose colored glasses on when it comes to his daughter but it's still a red flag that you fight about her behavior toward you. 

Alternative arrangements for SD's care in her father's absence need to be made and you need to disengage as much as possible. She's not your daughter, you didn't make her, you're not responsible for her. Please don't marry this man before you get all of this worked out. Marriage does not make things magically better.

 

Mommiedearest66's picture

So we do work during the day it’s just these weekend nights are his band practice. I feel like I’ve felt this before and maybe like another person posted that could be why I resent her so much. When we first got together he went on a tour for a month and it was like the first month we were actually dating and I had a seven year old in my house 247 while he was gone. There was a big ordeal and I freaked out because it was a lot of pressure being alone with her. I just don’t know how or what to do to disengage I’ve tried reading plenty of the disengage articles but I feel like I’ve tried that and my FDH got the point quickly and calls me out so I don’t know how to do it casually enough. Just so he will at least take more time to actually be with her. But the second I say she comes here in weekends to see you, I’m then saying he’s a bad parent and all hell breaks loose hah. What advice would you give for a pleasant disengagement? 

Disneyfan's picture

BUT HE IS A BAD PARENT.  

H e has full custody, but the kid is with mom all week and guy you all weekend. 

He dumped her on you for a month 30 days after you started dating.  A good parent would not have even introduced you to their child soon.

You resent a child that has been cursed with 2 awful parents.  Why don't you resent the mate that you've picked???

tog redux's picture

OK - I feel kind of sorry for this kid, honestly.  She's 10 years old and her mother is a meth head.  That means she's experienced neglect and possibly abuse, definitely abandonment by her mom.  BM is clean now, but not the healthiest person.  She treats SD poorly but SD is desperate to have a Mommy, so she hangs on her every word. 

DH has full custody but not really, because he sends her to his meth head ex's home 5 days a week, so really, she has the most time with SD. Meth Head talks crap about you and DH, but probably mostly you, because she's not a healthy person and she's jealous and insecure.  Yet DH still can't come up with a better arrangement than letting her be there all the time (hello, before and after school care). So she's being emotionally abused at BM's and her head is being filled with negative stuff about you.

She comes back to your house and you are perpetually annoyed with her, and she knows it.  So she gets passive-aggressive, because she's being told all kinds of nasty stuff about you, but she can't get directly angry at you.  And she knows you can't stand her.  Where is DH in all of this? He sounds absent much of the time.  Happy to let his daughter be cared for by his abusive ex and his current girlfriend. Truthfully, it sounds like no one really cares about this little girl.

I don't feel as sorry for you because you have a choice in this.  Please don't marry him and continue this - it's not sustainable for anyone. Either he cares for his daughter on the two measly days he exercises his "full custody", or she goes to live with BM, but you being the weekend parent is not an option.

Oh, and SD needs a therapist to help her deal with all of this. I don't mean to be harsh but this child is getting the short end of the stick in all of her homes.

twoviewpoints's picture

psst.... it's so nice to have you back, Tog. 

The only other thing I'd add is one does not have to touch a child physically for a child to be abused. Words,  screaming and demeaning , constantly critical and full of disgust can still be abusive. Words can damage and have lasting 'unseen' marks.

 

Mommiedearest66's picture

That’s what I’m scared of. Like I said I’ve slowly turned into my mother which is the reason I didn’t want kids to begin with. I just feel so deeply for my FDH, trust me I’ve thought of how to leave. When to leave and what to do. But I can’t get past packing a bag. Maybe it’s unhealthy. But I just want to fix it. His daughter and I had a decent friendship. Until he started telling me I had to discipline her, that I couldn’t just tell him what she was doing wrong and have him fix it anymore, that’s when things started to turn for the worse. I still hate having to be the one who disciplines but if I don’t then it won’t happen. He will let her do everything then ask me why the dishes are everywhere and the house is dirty. I think I am going to talk to him again about him taking responsibility for her and not making me do it. I mean it’s been years I should feel comfortable telling her what to do and not do but I hate it. 

 

I dont want her to hate me me just because I don’t want her to be useless like her mother. I know how much words affect, I am a prime example of that. But I do know I don’t want her to be another useless person. 

Gimlet's picture

To add to tog's comments above (which I agree with 100%):

"Like I said I’ve slowly turned into my mother which is the reason I didn’t want kids to begin with."

So you come from a history of abusive parenting?  It sounds like you were raised in a dysfunctional environment, and are finding yourself repeating some of those behaviors.  It's understandable, but it's not healthy for you or your SD.

" He will let her do everything then ask me why the dishes are everywhere and the house is dirty."

So you are accountable for discipline and the upkeep of the home?  Why?  Does this seem like an equitable arrangment to you? 

"I dont want her to hate me me just because I don’t want her to be useless like her mother"

I hate to break this to you, but your fiancee is just as useless as her mother, and maybe more so.  He has the chance to do better for his daughter, and not only is he failing to protect her, but he's also throwing you under the bus as well.  If the ex is a meth user,  why on earth is he letting his daughter go to her house if he is not court ordered to do so?  He doesn't want to deal with his kid anymore more than the mother does.

"Maybe it’s unhealthy. But I just want to fix it."

It is unhealthy and the only person you can fix is yourself.  You are displacing a number of emotions and behaviors, which I believe is unintentional on your part, on the one person who feels safe to displace them on - your SD.  She might be annoying and have some issues, but you are repeating an unhealthy pattern in more ways than one.

"I don’t want her to be useless like her mother."

Do you believe that harsh words make people behave better?  Did they make you a "better" person, or just an angry one? Your intentions are good, but you don't have the right tools in your toolbox.

"She completely shuts down when we get loud with her at all"

I came from a household where mental and emotional abuse was normal. Some people react the way your SD does, and some people get angry to protect themselves (perhaps you did - I know I did) I get it.  It's hard to change "creative adaptations" that arise from being raised by dysfunctional people, but for your own sake, you really should find a good counselor.  The way you feel today is not fair to your SD (and I feel terrible for her, because she has no one in her corner and that sucks) but it's also going to be a millstone around your neck for the rest of your life if you don't do something about it.

Harry's picture

You should not be the babysitter.  Helping out and being the babysitter is two different things. You have to tell SO he has to make other arrangements for his DD care. Not you.  And he has to put his foot down, when you tell her something she can not do what she wants.   She is palying a game with you,and is winning!!!  

You have to disengage with her.  Or this relationship is never going to work.  Your SO is at his best now ! 

Mommiedearest66's picture

What is a way of disengaging with SD but not making it harsh and obvious? I just know he will notice and fight me on it. I’ve read some things on disengaging but I still feel lost ha

tog redux's picture

You have to tell your SO that you are no longer willing to watch his daughter when he's gone. You'll do it in a pinch, but you aren't the babysitter for his band practices. He will need to find someone else to watch her or take her with him - seriously, she's 10.  Stick her in a corner with a phone and she'll be happy as a clam.

Can you see how selfish he's being? Expecting you to watch her while he goes off and does something that is fun for him (assuming the band is not how he makes his living).  This is not OK. You are not the selfish one here, HE IS.  It's his child and he needs a plan for her care that doesn't assume you will take care of her.

 

Curious Georgetta's picture

child's life is no bed of roses.  Unlike you, who has a choice in what sounds like a sad circus, this child is a mandatory performer.

If you choose to remain, you guys should seek family counselling.

However, why are you subjecting  yourself to this ongoing drama that is causing you such misery? You are not married to this man. You are not this child 's mom. You have absolutely no obligation to be playing a parenting role in this situation.

Let her dad be the parent and you be the fiancee.  Maybe it would be better if everyone stayed in their own lane for a while.

You sound like a pretty regimented person ; you might be happier in a relationship with someone who has no children.

 

 

 

 

Maxwell09's picture

She lies and shuts down because you've conditioned her to do so. She has learned that if she responds to you you will react and she will get in trouble so now she doesn't respond to you at all or she lies to try to get out of it. What's the difference to her? She either tells the truth and gets in trouble or tells a lie and gets in trouble. She is going with the latter because theres hope that she might get away with it when it comes to daddy.  You need to stop disciplining the kid. Let her dad be the one to send her to her room and correct her for lieing. 

I think you should disengage or step back. I think there is more going on under the whole milk incident that is bugging you but you haven't realized it. You have resentment towards the kid and a kid doing kid things like opening extra containers of milk that's going to be used anyway shouldn't cause you to hate her. All kids do this. We did it as kid, step kids do it, bio kids do it, grand kids will do it. It is a kid thing (throwback to half opened waterbottles all over your bedroom as a teen) 

My advice to you is to find out the root of your resentment and see if it is something you can work on. I have been here for so long, I am willing to swear for fact that girls are way harder than boys when it comes to steplife, but what you described isn't a "skid" thing-it's just a kid thing. 

 

Mommiedearest66's picture

That’s the thing though, I did it at a way younger age. I was punished. I didn’t do it again. That’s where my confusion lies, a ten year old shouldn’t forget every single time I tell her to do something. It might just be a kid thing but as you can see I don’t have kids of my own to compare the feeling to. I don’t know what’s wrong or right because all I have to compare is how my brothers raised their kids and how our parents raised us. We were raised in a rather strict household though so I know I can’t be half as bad as it was there, I don’t propose half the rules that I really feel necessary because I know she’s a softer kid. She’s soft spoken. She’s sweet. I don’t hate her but I don’t really like her either. She just cries about everything that makes her feel stressed. I don’t really know what to do so I just leave it alone. The second tears start to happen I’m apologizing and disappearing. 

 

But kike I mentioned in another comment I feel like the core resentment comes from the fact he left her with me for a month in the beginning of our relationship. I’ve always had the responsibility of being there for her since her moms a piece of shit. But I just thought it would be like raising my nieces and nephews. Easy peasy. Just a kid ya know. Not rocket science. But dear god. It’s harder than rocket science. You’re making a little person. You turn them into what they will be as adults. 

 

I think my my anxiety has a lot to do with how much stress it is. All I think about is how if I say or do the wrong thing this will stick forever just like that time my mom said “blah blah blah” ya know. Like I see what I’m doing. I just want to change it. I need to. I don’t want her to be miserable her whole life. Just because I’m a shitty person doesn’t mean she has to be. 

 

I think im rambling. Sorry. 

tog redux's picture

She's being passive-aggressive. It's an unhealthy way to express anger indirectly. You end up feeling the anger that she can't express directly to you.

Disneyfan's picture

You keep calling the mother useless and a piece of shit.  All while ignoring the fact that your BF is ALSO a useless, shitty parent.

It's crazy that you are condemning the person who has actually decreased the amount of time the child is in your home.  You're condemning the one parent who is at least making an attempt to parent.  Dad isn't doing anything.

Mommiedearest66's picture

Update; he has spoken to her and we spoke lightly on how it wasn’t even the milk that got me upset, how he gets it she should have heard what I said and even if it was an accident she could have said that and would not get in trouble. I get it. Just fess up to having forgot but she immediately goes to nope I didn’t do it. So at least FDH is starting to realize that and see. He finally sat down with her and told her it was about the disrespect of being lied to that really got us upset, that she is old enough to know that lying won’t help her cause. 

I feel a light pull from my shoulders as some tension releases and hopefully today at my sisters with the family will help kind of entertain my SD she absolutely loves my sister so I know I can always win her back with that. Hah. Is that bad? Trying to please her after we have a family quarrel? I don’t want to buy her love but I don’t want her to always feel like I’m mad. 

I know it wasn’t the milk. It’s a deeper issue. I just honestly feel so much relief having people talk to me about this. all of your advice is heeded and being taken into account. I just feel alone at times and really all I think I needed was a place to vent hah. I didn’t realie it would help that much. I know I’m young and like a few of you have said, I don’t have to stay, but I want to. I want to be in this little family. We just need to work on some things. 

 

I accidently posted this on my forum topic but I meant to post here so sorry for the doubling of a message. But I do feel a little better about all this. Thank you for the support.