A Pleasant Evening
Tonight was actually a pleasant evening with SD12.
Now rewind a few days. We (me, my DH, and SD) got into it on Sunday. I was fed up with her sour attitude about everything and generally ignoring requests from her father and I (which resulted in her sister, BD2.5 almost falling out of a shopping cart). Then she enters the room on the phone with BM and saying the drop-off/pick-up time had changed. It put me over the edge. (Side note: plans are constantly communicated from BM to DH through SD12; and BM agrees to whatever SD wants/doesn’t want to do.) It ended with SD telling DH that they can go to the courts and she can tell the judge she doesn’t like coming here and the judge will side with her because that’s what has happened to her friends. DH ended up walking out (just to the car so he could take SD back to her mother) and slamming the door. I just stood there shaking with anger/frustration.
After speaking with DH once he dropped her off, he wasn’t thrilled about seeing her anytime soon. I agreed but we both knew we couldn’t deny her visitation time with DH just because she was being a brat (even though he was ready to come up with an excuse to not pick her up today). I was definitely ready to return her Christmas present.
After thinking really hard about things and generally losing sleep, I suggested (again) that we lay out our house rules so she knows what to expect when she’s in our house. SD ends up not having “fun” at our house because she thinks all we (I) do is tell her “do this/don’t do that. She feels that way because BM lets her do whatever she wants.
So after coming up with some (common sense) expectations, DH and I (with him leading and me just being there) decided to go over them with her tonight. We also had a truncated visit tonight with DH dropping her off to BM’s BF/roommate an hour earlier than normal. Well, SD ended up being golden! She ended up cleaning after herself once she was done eating without any prompting from us. And we hadn’t even had the discussion with her yet!
DH tried to have a quick talk with her before they had to go, letting her know how great things were tonight compared to Sunday. He asked her if she noticed a difference and she said she didn’t know and couldn’t really notice a difference - what?!? She then told him that it was because she wasn’t acting like a middle schooler tonight.
No, it’s because she acted like a human tonight and let herself enjoy it.