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New bathroom but no money for tea

NotYourAverageStepMama's picture

SD started off the phone call saying how they are getting a new bathroom at the house so they will have two instead of only 1, but then later when asked if SD has had any tea since she sounded sick for the 3rd week in a row, SD said "no we don't have money for that." ........... Why on earth a child knows anything about a house's finances at 6 I don't know and it sure doesn't look good on BM that they are supposedly adding a new bathroom to their house, but SD doesn't think they have money for tea ...

We get off the phone and DH is like maybe we should send tea for SD. I told him, there is no way they do not have money for tea for SD. BM might be trying to manipulate the situation by telling SD they don't have money for certain things so that SD tells DH about it and DH will send things or money because he feels bad for SD. If BM is putting on a new bathroom which I can't fathom how the hell they are affording that if SD doesn't have tea it is because BM doesn't care not because she cannot afford to buy any. Half way through the phone call SD hung up on us and when we called her back she said she turned off wifi by accident and it hung up the call. Sounds like they can't afford their phone bill still and are only using wifi, but can add a second bathroom. 

Also, after 7 weeks of our hard work on getting SD to count to 100, SD told us yesterday she doesn't remember how to count to 100 anymore and that they are not practicing at home. So glad $720 of tutoring down the drain for it to not be kept up with and all the hours we put in at home too. Can't wait for the conference next month to find out how SD is doing in school. 


justmakingthebest's picture

I hope your DH calls her out on it in front of the teacher! "BM, I can only do so much from 3000 miles away. I had her in tutoring and she was at grade level when she left me. A few weeks back with you and it was all for nothing. If you can't handle her education, you don't need to be the custodial parent!"

NotYourAverageStepMama's picture

BM and if it has to be with her then fine, but with know it all step dad who runs his mouth more than anyone in any school meeting he has ever been in, it would be easier if we could have it separate. We will tell the teacher though if SD is behind where she was when she left us. We have the final assessment from the tutor as well as the every session reports from the tutor we would be more than happy to send over to the teacher. 

JRI's picture

I'm not defending BM who doesn't sound great at all.  But maybe she uses the "we can't afford it" card as an all-purpose response to things she doesnt want to do for whatever reason.  I probably used some similar response instead of a flat no back in the day.  I think mine was " I'll think about it".

I hope the confetence shows SD has retained much of her tutoring.  Good luck.

NotYourAverageStepMama's picture

but it is pretty dumb to use when SD is 6 because it doesn't sound good SD starting the phone call about adding on a new bathroom then talking about not affording tea for a child's sore throat

Kind of funny but when I was 5 I told my school that my dad lived in the attic and we sometimes brought him food... The truth to that was that my dad had an art studio in the attic and when he was painting we would sometimes bring him snacks. Let's just say it prompted a whole investigation

justmakingthebest's picture

maybe you and DH should instacart her a little get well basket then. Some kids cold meds, tea, honey, tylenol and flowers. Remind SD that she can always count on Daddy to take care of her even when he is away- and tell her the same thing! 

NotYourAverageStepMama's picture

The only thing that I am worried about is that BM is using and going to use SD to say they don't have money for things for us to feel bad and send things to BM's house. It's like a fine line that could easily be taken advantage of instead of outright asking for money. 

DH did message BM after the phone call and said that SD has been sounding sick and when she was with us hot tea and Zarbees natural medicine helped when with us. BM said she has that exact medicine at home and SD has been drinking tea. So supposedly she has all that SD needs.

Harry's picture

Tea, and honey then money.  At least you know tea gets to the house.  Money will go somewhere else.  
BM will be pis* off that you are sending food.?  

I would of been pis* if BF send food and junk instead of CS.  If he would of send CS like he was supposed to.  There would be money for more  food.  Instead of eggs and pasta, rice dinners.  

ESMOD's picture

Kids often say things that they don't fully understand and get the story wrong.

It could have been that SD was with BM and she saw a starbucks and asked BM for tea.. BM says "we don't have money to waste on that".. (meaning starbucks.. but sd takes it in a different direction).

It could also be that because they are putting in a bathroom.. they are tight on their budget..or the landlord is the one paying and putting it in.. or they got some govt assistance that is doing the remodel for them

It is frustrating that SD does not seem to be keeping up her academic progress.. I might try to contact the school directly if I were your DH to see if any extra services could be offered during the school day.. also see if it's possible to work with her more remotely on those things.. instead of her just saying she "forgot".. because she may say that to get out of the "work" of repeating stuff to daddy.

NotYourAverageStepMama's picture

They can't afford tea, it is either an excuse to not buy it or a child's perception on things. 

For the school part, we weren't asking SD to repeat it. We asked SD is she had been practicing counting to 100. She said no just learning at school and I forgot how to count to 100. Currently we are waiting for a response from her teacher about the online portal and then to ask about conferences and progress. 

notarelative's picture

SD is six. Six year olds often say stuff that is not quite true. You can't take everything at face value.

You did your best this summer for SD academically. I doubt its all out the window as they are learning and practicing skills at school. SD may not want to show her learning in front of BM. The difference in each home's academic expectations has to be apparent to her. She's six, and still looking for a way to juggle the expectations of both parents.

Since you have the tutoring report, send a copy to the teacher with a note that you want to make her aware that SD worked on these skills this summer. It adds information to the records the previous school sent.

NotYourAverageStepMama's picture

I don't know if part of it too is BM telling SD we don't have money for this or that so it makes it's way back to DH and perhaps then he will buy whatever it is that SD was told they don't have money for it. Without getting into it there is a history of why I wouldn't be surprised if BM is indirectly trying to get DH to spend money, not for tea specifically, but in general. Like her sending the phone to us this summer that only works on wifi beause BM hasn't paid the bill. 

DH knows BM has always had a way of telling people specifically the church about hardships she has without asking for money, but where other people and/or the church donate to BM whatever it is she may need. Where they come from the churches will lend their time to assist those in need at their church or donate items such as cars for the church to donate to someone in the church who might need it, etc. I don't want to give a whole lot of information on it but there are instances of this in BM's history. I don't understand it because I could never do that, but at the end of the day BM is basically a con artist.

That's true I know DH did email the teacher once we found out who it was and introduced himself and gave a bit of background on SD having to repeat kindergarten and getting tutoring all summer with us, but could very easily send along the evaluations that the tutor did, one at the beginning and one at the very end.

advice.only2's picture

Maybe next time DH talks with SD on the phone he can ask her to count with him to 100, that way he can gauge if she really doesn’t remember or if she was just saying that. 

NotYourAverageStepMama's picture

I just know there was a bit of attitude we had to deal with for a week or two with SD not wanting to count to 100 so she kept messing up because she wasn't trying because she thought she wouldn't have to do it if she kept messing up, but since we knew she could she didn't get out of it until she did it. So I don't know if she tries and doesn't get to 100 if it is a lack of wanting to do it or a lack of practice of it she has forgotten some of it. Maybe if we do a video call vs a regular call. 

lieutenant_dad's picture

Idea: do video calls and set up a "homework reward chart" with her. At every call, your DH gives her a practice task. If she gets it right or tries really hard (like she confuses 18 and 19 but can be easily corrected), she gets a sticker. After X number of stickers, your DH sends her a gift of her choosing. The teacher could probably help come up with a few things SD could do to practice with him.