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Where is the line with disengagement? When things go to far, do you re engage?

PeanutandSons's picture

I have disengaged from most stuff with ss11... Dh has been made aware. But hes still not keeping on top of ss to my standards....and now I am thinking tbis is beyond anyone s reasonable standards.

Dh tells ss to shower everyday......but I know he doesn't. How do I know? Because my kids bath toys will still be strewn over the floor of the tub. No way to shower without atleast kicking the toys tk the side. Dh doesnt notice this or follow up in any way.

Ss hasnt brushed his teeth in Weeks I believe. Dh tell hi. To brush hks teeth everyday.... but never follows ul to make sure itsbeing done. He just assumes ss does what hex told. I know this because his tootnbrush didnt move for over a week ... It was under three tubes of tootnpaste. We went away for the weekend... His tooth brush never left his has also not been used since weve been back as its still in his suitcase that hes too lazy tk unpack.

He hasnt read a book, save 15 minutes, in three Weeks. Hes supposed to read the hour before bed every night. Dh assumes he is ..... But he just watches TV til bedtime. Sunday night dh told ss to read a boom because he hadnt read in days (while away on vaca) read for 15 mi utes and then went to bed early. I dont thi.k dh even noticed that ss came to say good night 45 minutes before his bedtime.

He basically watches TV and eats...... Thats it. I really dknt want to take on the responsibility of micro managing tbis kid again....but this is rediculous


PeanutandSons's picture

Its just so gross!! And ss knows better.....until I disengaged he did all this stuff daily. Yeah I had to keel on hjm like a toddler....but its got done. 7 years of habit a.d routind out the window the second im nkt there to throw down some consequence.

It would be easiee to train a rabbit than tbis kid

askYOURdad's picture

" but never follows ul to make sure itsbeing done. He just assumes ss does what hex told

this is so funny to me... I am absolutely biased to my own children and think they hung the moon and all that... but I don't think for a second that they actually listen to me every time I tell them something! I am a broken record and repeat myself at least 10 times a day!

PeanutandSons's picture

That's the most agitating part.... Dh knows full sell how lazy and unmotivated hks kid is...... yet he stl doeznt follow up. Anytime ive commented that things arent getting done he just says..... Ss knows what is expected of him. He knows hdx supposed to turn off his TV and read....that doesnt mean hes doing it. Never pops his hezd in to check ... Never asks whzt book hes reading.... Just assumes that its all getting done.


Newstep's picture

I totally understand. SD didn't shower, brush her teeth, do her homework, stay off her phone after 9pm she basically didn't do anything that she didn't want to do. SO never followed through on anything. It literally drove me freaking crazy. I raised my kids totally different so to see her live like that made me sick. All I could see was the future with this 30 year old grown ass woman still living in my home acting like that. I had to act because I won't have that!!!

Finally got through SO's thick skull that everything doesn't have to be "okay" with her in order for it to be done. She isn't going to like rules and having to do homework but WHO CARES!!! He was so busy worrying about her feelings over everything that he was destroying the person she could grow to be. To me that is just criminal.

He finally got his head out of his ass but still has trouble with rules if he thinks she won't like it. He has come very far but still has miles and miles to go.

The only things I won't give on are homework must be done, bedtime is enforced and showers and washing and drying her hair every night. No excuses!! If I didn't make a point of those things none of them would get done. If she did take a shower she wet her hair (not wash it) then go lay on the couch with wet hair till she fell asleep. :sick: Totally gross!!!

All of the other piddly crap I ignore but because I ignore it I spend lots of time alone in my bedroom when she is at our house. It saves my sanity to disengage its the only thing I can do......

DaizyDuke's picture

I guess I look at each things that is bothersome and decide whether it directly affects me.

Sitch: SD15 will go days with no toilet paper in the bathroom that she solely uses.
My thoughts: Wow, what a nasty scumbag, who does this shit? Gawd, I need to tell DH
My action: Nothing. If DH hasn't noticed or has noticed and doesn't care then whatever. Her nasty, unwiped ass is not directly affecting me, so let her be nasty.

So like your SS not brushing his teeth... do you really care if his teeth rot? I know I wouldn't. Not my kid, not my problemo. Your SS not taking a shower... do you really care if he is dirty? I know I wouldn't.

I guess my point is do you really and truly care about the well being of this kid when you get frustrated by his lack of ability to do simple tasks or are you more frustrated that he is getting away with doing his own thing? I am so far gone (disengaged) that I simply don't care anymore.... the ONLY things that really irk me and that I WILL harp on DH about are SD15 spending habits and her school as THOSE are things that directly affect me. Spending habits.. for obvious reasons, as what DH spends on her comes out of OUR money. School because I want her out of my house ASAP, in college, with a job etc and not loitering around for years after high school with her entitled hand out.

PeanutandSons's picture

Its a mixture.

Yeah, I do want whats best for him... In thd same way I wod want it for any kid. But I do see his poor oral hygiene affecting our household budget when dh gets hit with a huge dental bill. Ss may not care that ne is functionally illiterate....but I dont want him mooching off of me forever, so he needs to gdt an education.

memphismama's picture

Sometimes I think men can't smell anything, and then other times I'm sure they can't! And being a mother who already raised her kids, I know that certain stages of life are more smelly than others, but finally gave up this fight with ss14. His dad may have the time to stand at the door and deliver directions (get yourself wet, all over, now put shampoo in your hair, move it around with your fingers, all over, not just the spot where it hit your head, now rinse, pick up the soap, etc) but I am so over that! And having a comparison in my head from my kids (who could bathe themselves pretty good at four!) wasn't helping me mentally. I am currently working to rid myself of traces of sarcasm when I run into the invisible wall of stink and exclaim, "Isn't he just the cutest/sweetest/most perfect boy in the whole world?" which is what I hear all day/every day from the disney dad. It's hard, but I am sure to improve my delivery with as much practice as I get! Hate it for the kids though, cause you know that teachers and classmates and total strangers are offended and put off and neither bio parent seems to care that he doesn't have any friends.

Willow2010's picture

I dis engaged way before DH and I married. I stayed disengaged after we married, when SS came to live with us. I reengaged about half way thru SS senior year because he was failing so bad, that I thought they might actually not let him graduate.

DaizyDuke's picture

I dont understand how people can live like this?? I mean I've gone 2 days MAX (from having the flu or what have you) of not showering and/or brushing my teeth and I can't even begin to stand that "fuzzy" feeling on my teeth or that nasty unwashed hair feeling/smell. When I had my C Section, the first 2 days after BS3 was born I had to stay in bed, by that third day, that was the ONLY thing I could think about.. taking a shower and brushing my teeth! I bet the nurse has never seen someone hobble out of a hospital bed so freaking fast. WTF is wrong with people???

Cocoa's picture

I totally believe in disengagement, not my kid, not my problem. but these problems have a very big risk of coming back to haunt us. when I dis-engaged, I told my dh that I was backing off and allowing him and bm to raise these kids as they see fit. BUT I also told him this: due to your and bm's lack of parenting, these kids are a trainwreck waiting to happen. I am disengaged unless it affects my money, my time, my home or my future, and at some point they're going to come knocking. I don't see these kids ever getting the education they need to become competent, self-supporting adults, so let me tell you this: when they're 18 and child support stops and bm kicks them out because they are no longer a meal ticket, they are not moving in with us. when their teeth rot, not one cent of my money or our combined money is going to fix them. when they go to jail, if you touch your retirement to bail them out, we're done. so disengagement works, but you've got to let it be known LOUD AND CLEAR that you will NEVER deal with the consequences of poor parenting.

LuckyGirl's picture

No way in hell would any kid/stepkid of mine be unwashed or have dirty teeth. I find por hygiene offensive and would not want that in my home.
We do have this argument with the SD's as their BM's idea of amount of washing necessary is different to ours. I don't care - in my home you WILL shower and brush your teeth whether you like it or not. And my SO supports this 100%.