You are here

Redheaded stepchild

EvilStepMom1977's picture

Hi, new here.

My partner and I have been together 3 years.

He has two kids.  He gets them every other weekend and one night a week.

His son, I do okay with.  His daughter, I really struggle with.  

She has a lot of problems.   Many are probably fetal alcohol related.  She's 9. She's obese.  She struggles to wipe and leaves a lot of poop behind.  She often doesn't wear underwear.  She leaks urine and most of the time smells really bad.  She has, in the past month, wet the bed twice without saying anything.  The first time my partner told her: "Accidents happen but you have to tell us so we can clean it up".  Well she just wet the bed and didn't say anything a second time.  I found out hours after her mom picked her up.  A talk with her mom revealed that she's been wearing Depends for a month.  But of course her mom didn't bother to give me a heads up.  Her mom is horrible and has a personality disorder.  She can't be reasoned with. 

In the past two months I've found skidmarks on the bedspread.  Wet bed twice.  Poop in the shower twice.  Poop on the bathroom floor.  Numerous incidents of clothes with skidmarks.  Scribbled on wall.  Was told not to.  Later scribbled over same spot with blue crayon.

I just went into the laundry room and I smelled a smell.  Leggings with skidmarks.  No underwear.

I'm seriously ready to lose my mind with this child.

My partner is fighting for joint custody.  I don't know how to tell him that will kill me inside.  Our finances are crap because all his money goes to child support.  But I can handle that better than joint custody.

This is my dreadful secret. 

Harry's picture

First make DH clean the bed,  bathroom, shower ect.  His DD his problem.  Make DH do SD laundry, make DH make sure SD takes a shower ever day.  You have to start putting most of DD responsibility on DH.  Maybe then custody will jot look that good 

EvilStepMom1977's picture

Yeah.  when my partner does the laundry he will put her clothes in with the other clothes which grosses me out. I feel like her clothes contaminate the rest of the laundry and I won't have it. Sometimes he doesn't wash her clothes in water thats hot enough so the smell lingers. Then he'll throw them in the dryer without making sure to see if they are cleanand that really locks the smell in. I have seen clothes come out of the dryer and they still stink. I'm kind of a control freak when it comes to the laundry. Ive been pretty easy on her in the past and let my partner talk to her. I think I'm honestly going to start coming down a lot harder on her. Im tired of this shit.

shamds's picture

i found with hygiene issues to state to hubby how disgusting it is. Like make him smell it, any sane parent with basic hygiene will just be mortified and embarassed. 

The worst for me was ss19 did a full load of laundry but set it to 1/3 load. Basically 1/3 water to was a full oad and not enough soap. I came downstairs in morning 3rd trimester pregnant and barfed. I was gagging the whole time the stench was there the moment i opened my bedroom door. 

Ss hung his cloth on indoor clothesline right against our clothes including our kids. Just disgusting. Hubby came home in evening and whilst still closig the doors i made him smell over there and pointed in direction of clothes line. I told him i can’t stand it, it stinks like soury sweat from running a marathon and you decided to not wash those clothes for a month and its caked in. Hubby smelt it, shouted for his son to come out immediately and embarassed him in front of us saying you’re just disgusting. How can you wash these clothes and hang them like this. You’ve not even used enough soap or water. Wash it again, full load!! A shitload of soap and never do this again!!! Ss stared at daddy confused but embarassed. Never again did it happen. Now he decides to hang his laundry on dining chairs. Clothes line are always full of our clothes anyways... 

i remember ss coming home from university and not do laundry for over a week. He doesn’t have many clothes... how is it my 2 & 3 yr olds see a tap on and come to wash their hands. You call them to wash their hands and they’re so happy to do it. Hun what you’re dealing with is a major relationship dealbreaker for me. This isn’t normal!! Surely your husbands head isn’t so far up his arse he can’t realise that??

Winterglow's picture

He doesn't get off with half-assing the laundry. He's an adult for goodness sake! Walk him through it and make him take notes. Check on the results until he's embarrassed to not to it right. What chance has a 9 yo of washing her clothes properly if her father isn't capable of doing it right?

MrsStepMom's picture

A 9 year old shitting herself should be in therapy! Even if it is due to fetal alcohol whatever she needs serious therapy! NOW! Also, make HER clean it. She is old enough to use a paper towel and cleaner. Yes, I'd still go back in later and clean it to my standards but at least she has to deal with the mess of it.

Aunt Agatha's picture

This would 100% be a dealbreaker for me.  This young lady isn’t likely to improve anytime soon.  Can you see yourself dealing with this in 5, 10, 15 years?  Read around this board.  She will be 50 and unable to properly take care of herself.

Also, coming from a family of amazing red heads, hair color isn’t the problem (and the trope you used needs to die like the saying evil stepmom).  Poor decision making by your DH on who he sleeps / procreates with, followed by even more poor parenting, absolutely is the problem.

Thumper's picture

Please have your boyfriend take her to a Pediatrician to rule out all possible medical conditions.

FAS is very serious and usually has life long complications.

A therapist would be the next avenue, maybe one that uses horses or animals? Just check with his insurance and make the calls.

Good Luck and I hope his daughter receives the treatment she deserves.

**side note, I am not one to encourage playing games with an ex---but when 1 parent, believes they shouldnt take the kid to therapy without the x OK??? Like your case, I say---take her to therapy and ask for forgiveness from the court IF bm pitches a ludicrous fit**Women act first then play the "i didnt know, I made a mistake, I made a bad choice (BARF)...and it is ok"

Child comes first--she needs help!!!!




tog redux's picture

This would be a deal breaker for me too, especially if DH sat back and expected me deal with her pissy poopy bed, clean her poop out of the shower and wash her skidmarked clothes.  Why is that your job? You can be a neat freak with your own laundry and let DH wash his kid's and his own laundry however he pleases.  Men like this make me sick.  "Here new wife, here's my disabled child who shits and pisses in her bed, you deal with her! Oh, and I want more custody time so I don't have to pay child support, you don't mind, do you?"

Tell him straight out how you feel. 

Harry's picture

How to do the laundry. He only to do SK laundry by its self not wit your clothes. He an adult, if he not doing it right it’s to tick you off.  How to clean up after his DD.  Check the bed each morning, check the bathroom after she used it. Ect,ect,ect, 

Cover1W's picture

Yes - set up a separate clothes bin JUST for her things.  Everything separate all the time.

SayNoSkidsChitChat's picture

It’s an old expression, Siemprematahari.

From Google:

red-head·ed step·child



a person or thing that is neglected, unwanted, or mistreated.

"audio has always been something of a red-headed stepchild in the PC world"

Aunt Agatha's picture

It’s completely unnecessary and perpetuates negative perceptions of red heads.  

For example, my sister has beautiful natural red hair.  You would not believe the myriad of unwanted attention it brings.  She has been harassed by men with weird red head fetishes, has people invade her space to touch it, has been accused of being hot tempered when she is one of the most kind, patient people I know.  The list goes on.

Its much better to accurately describe a situation rather than play up stereotypes.  


Aunt Agatha's picture

you can’t see how hurtful this expression is to others.

Love_and_Loathing's picture

I have a red headed kid with a red headed dad. At no point is this negative unless you’re overly sensitive. It’s just a saying. No one hates redheads. 

Rags's picture

Does she actually have a Dx’d issue or is your DH just that useless and shitty as a parent?   Pun intended.

Time to start the full confrontation public humiliation campaign against DH and SD if she does not have a Dx’d issue.

I could not tolerate either of them in my life as you describe them.




EvilStepMom1977's picture

So I should clear up a few things.

My partner and I aren't married.  My divorce damn near killed me and I just don't think I can go through that again.  He would like to get married some day but he also knows I'm just not sure I can.  One of my biggest reservations is being more on the hook for her physical and emotional care.  Also I have a child with autism so the thought of having another special needs child is really overwhelming.

My mother is a redhead and is beautiful.  My cute nephew is also Ia ginger.  I have nothing against redheads.  It's just an expression but I'm sorry I used it.  I can understand why it offends people.  This girl's hair is relentlessly curly.  Her mom actually got her a cute cut but then she cut some gum out of her bangs one day so now it's super short on front and this doesn't help with her overall awkward and smelly presentation. Poor girl. It really is sad.  I feel sorry for her being so slow and obese and awkward.  Im not a horrible person but since it's anonymous here, and I have kind of a dark sense of humour, I'm trying to find a way to laugh about it.  She really is the quintessential embodiment of a redheaded stepchild.  

It doesn't help that my daughter who is 12 is incredibly smart, thin, and beautiful.  I'm not saying this to be cruel.  It's just a fact.  I think my step resents it and her mother assumes my daughter is a bitch and has even referred to me and my daughter as bitches and cunts to my partner.  To be clear, my daughter is very kind but she is quite frustrated by the poop.  

My partner pays a child support based on twice his income because the courts feel he is "capable" of making that amount.  This is unfair. He lives at poverty level and I simply want the support adjusted to reflect what he actually earns.  Not everyone who has a high paying job and loses it can just go out and get another equal job. Life doesn't work that way.

I found another pair of shitty panties this afternoon.

We're gonna have a come to Jesus in a few days. I'm really going to level with her.  Whatever challenges she has, I expect her to start prerinsing her panties and leggings.  She will be expected to wear panties with her leggings. She will sleep in a depend.  If she doesn't take time to stay clean, she will lose screen time.  I think the loss of screen time will be a motivator if nothing else.  

EvilStepMom1977's picture

Every time she's about to leave, I tell her to go around the house and gather up any laundry before she leaves. I've tried to implement separate laundry baskets.  I told my partner today that next weekend, I expect him to go around the house WITH HER as she looks for her laundry. I will no longer take her word for it.  I specifically told her to go to the bathroom and gather her dirty clothes.  (I don't use that bathroom.) She claimed to do so.  So either she's too stupid to do something that simple or she's being passive aggressive. I do wonder if it's passive aggression.  Because I don't know how you leave shitty panties behind after being told to gather up your clothes.  Seems intentional to me.  

Anyway I really plan on lighting into her soon.

BlendedFamilyMom's picture

I have had to deal with my step-son's bed wetting and poopy bottom/underwear/pants after remarrying. It's NOT FUN! He was 15 but mentallly more around 5 or 6. We did get protective coverings for the bed to handle the bed wetting, we restricted any liquids after a certain time and made sure he went to the bathroom before bed. The bed wetting still happened... sigh...  This may sound strange but we had him HYPNOTIZED to deal with the bed wetting... and it WORKED! There are different reasons a child is wetting the bed so I don't think this is a cure-all for everyone but it helped in our situation.

As for the poop... I know the first summer my step-son stayed with us I ended up throwing away a few pairs of underwear and shorts as I could not get the poop smell out! Ugh! We found poop on towels, hand towels, wash cloths, in the shower as well. He would throw the poop towels in the back of the bathroom closet so we wouldn't find them for awhile. Again we came up with an unusual solution -- A BIDET! We bought a bidet (they are available on Amazon for around $30-$40.) This crazy thing has been SO helpful with this issue! It's so great my husband and I installed one in our own bathroom! Now we just have to deal with his armpit stench! Lol! How can someone shower and come out still stinking??? So crazy! Hope this helps! 

Harry's picture

One, if he thinks doing all the laundry together is a good way of doing it,  he has a problem.  This kid is disabled,  really don’t think a talking with someone, or a pill is going solve the problem.  This is the way this kid is, and worse of all it doesn’t bother her.  Or it doesn’t bother your SO.  

Time to run,  or stop living together.  Let him take care of her by himself and stop helping him.  It’s going to be a life long job