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“She’s just not a nice person”

Trying to Stepmom's picture

This is what DH said about SD13 last night while we were discussing the evening's events. Here's the recap:

DH and the kids (SD13 and DD3) get home. DH and DD say hello; no hello from SD, which has been the norm for a while. 

Fastforward and I'm getting dinner ready. DH is chilling with BS in the living room and SD actually makes an appearance and does some homework on the couch. DD brings SD a present (from my mom and stepdad) that has been in SD's room for over a week. She didn't seem to notice it sitting on her dresser the last couple of times she was with us. Since I'm in the kitchen, I don't hear everything that's going on but DH lets her know who the gift is from. SD opens it, does something and the first thing I hear from her is "it's broken." It wasn't really broken and was easily fixed. DH is describing what it does (it's a bluetooth speaker with a light that changes color and stuff). The next thing that SD says is "I probably won't use it much because all the music I listen to has bad words in it." Who admits that to their parents?!? I listened to music with profanity in it at that age, but I knew there was a time and place and if I was using a speaker in my room, I'd turn it down or listen to something else. I try to shrug off her ungratefulness and continue with dinner. 

Dinner comes around and she barely eats any of it. She then tells DH she's still hungry and he tells her to have the last pork chop. She says it was good but hard to eat with her current orthodontia situation. Ok, I get it, but there were plenty of other things to eat on the table. I even offered up the leftovers in the fridge. 

Fastforward to leaving time. I'm trying to slam my dinner because BS decided it was time to breastfeed when I put dinner on the table. DH can tell I'm irritated and apologizes. I let him know that it's not him and tell him I'm irritated at SD's ungratefulness. SD comes out to the kitchen and is standing by the door. She tells DH that she's hungry and DH told her that he wasn't stopping and buying her anything. She opens the door, leaving it open and goes to the car. I say "bye! Glad you enjoyed dinner and the gift!" in a sarcastic tone. SD doesn't hear it but DH does and then I say to him "talk to your daughter."

 When he returns home, we talk. It's a lot to recap, but here's some of what I remember:

  • SD thinks that when it's the three of us (SD, DH, me) that her and I are vying for DH's attention. It's fine when it's the two of them or even her and I, but put us all together and it's not good. 
  • SD told DH that she tells BM's BF/roommate more than what she tells DH.
  • DH told her that things will be different with her going to school near BM's house next year. And that we're done trying to get her into DH's school. It's a done deal. 
  • DH said that we need to be the bigger people in this situation and that we need to go on as normal and show SD the good she's missing out on. 
  • I asked DH what that looked like because I'm tired of putting myself out there, only to be shat on by an ungrateful teenager. 
  •  Apparently SD wants me to say hello to her rather than not. 
    I told DH that it works both ways and he knows that. 
  • I expressed my disappointment with how ungrateful she was about the Christmas present. And not just that gift - every gift she receives . (I even took a cute video of DD because she thinks the Bluetooth speaker is an Amazon Alexa. But don't want to share it because I know my mom will ask how SD likes it. I can't tell her that she said nothing and then left it sitting on the couch when she left.) DH is 100% fine with my family not wasting  their time and money on gifts for SD anymore. 
  • I also expressed that we (mainly DH) can't be afraid to speak up if SD is not doing the right thing. Yes, we can pick our battles and some don't need to be faught immediately. And that she has to keep being reminded of certain things - simple, everyday things! 

I'm sure there was more but I can't think right now. It's probably better that I'm writing this now and not in the heat of last night.

In all, we're going to take babysteps. He's going to talk with her when he picks her up today. The goal is "hello" "thank you" and "goodbye."



Aniki's picture

we're going to take babysteps.

WE? Okay. SD seems to be (to me) in sullen, ungrateful teenage snot mode and DH is too intimidated to parent because...COD and caters to snot.

Time to go into Crappy Coworker mode. Attempt to maintain a slight upturn to your mouth, say Hello and Goodbye, and leave the rest to your DH. 

Trying to Stepmom's picture

I feel like we've been trying babysteps for years! 

I would like to disengage, but I know I can't do it fully. 

DH needs to stop trying to make sure that SD doesn't get into a sour mood and parent her. 

Aniki's picture

Pffffft to the babysteps. Let Daddy worry about his snotty pwincess. 

You don't have to fully disengage. Disengagement is different for everyone. I found that when I stopped allowing things to bother me, they ceased to matter. So do the bare minimum. When SD becomes a Sour Patch Skid, she's 110% Daddy's problem and you walk away and do something else.

Trying to Stepmom's picture

Not letting some things get to me is something I personally struggle with. And I'm pretty sure that DH is to dense (with his rose colored glasses on) to know why I'm getting bothered. But I like the idea. 

thinkthrice's picture

is delusional.  Thinking that SD will come around.  She won't.  Bratty teen is one thing.  Being devoid of all manners because you hate daddy and SM and your half siblings because you want all the attention is another.

Cue the music:  "Big Shot" by Billy Joel.

Trying to Stepmom's picture

He thinks that SD will come around the same way that my older step sister did when my mom married her dad. But here's the thing, she was an adult when they remarried and she just stayed away. Pretty sure my stepdad didn't force interaction. I don't even remember how long it was until I met my stepsister- it was that bad. But it wasn't anything my mother did; it was the fact that her dad remarried. They've now been married for 18 years and by seeing us together today, you'd have no idea there was any animosity in the family. 

Ispofacto's picture

When we said something to Killjoy about her ungrateful attitude, she made it a point to start saying please and thank you but it came across as sickeningly insincere, which is worse imho.  Talk is cheap.  She's stubborn as fμck.

It had nothing to do with the teen years.  She's been a sullen brat since she was 5.  Studies prove that spoiled children are the most unhappy.

So we cut wayyy back on favors and treats.  But she is almost 16 now and I think it is too late for her.  Once a child has had a taste of power and control, the horses have left the barn.

Changing her words won't change who she is, she is just not a nice person.


Trying to Stepmom's picture

When Daddy makes SD do or say something, it doesn't sound genuine at all. 

To quote my sister from our conversation last night:

"This is beyond normal teenage angst"

somethingwicked's picture

This SD13 sounds alot like my DH's OD,Kunti ,my now Ex 40 something year old skid.

In her teens ,around the age of 15 ,she acted /behaved the same way as yours . And I continued to be nice,do hand stands, buy and do for her and her sister for too many more years.

She was a user and not a nice person and after 21 years of the BS I disengaged from  her in 2013 when she was in her mid thirties.

My positive "Hope Springs Eternal "mindset  did  not fit in with that extremely self absorbed or PASed by the toxic biohobag  skid and her younger sister ,too, followed suite. That whole competition mindset was one eldest SD had in her head as well.My DH was a Disney Daddee and I was ignorant to how StepHell works.

I am glad you have the benefit of ST and the advice from so many who have/are living this;  and hope you come up with a solution.For me total disengagement was the answer as SD NEVER changed her spots only grew to be a more sneaky and nasty person.

Please get DH to nip it or you disengage  but whatever you do to mitigate SD13 behavior don't  keep slogging away in frustration hoping she'll magically turn into a nice person.Her mother may be poisoning her mind about you. Her father may not really understand that skid has a real issue with you and believes she will grow out of it.

Hate  when allowed to fester has a long or no  expiration date. You have so much more in your life to spend your energies toward rather than try to get this toxic skid to accept you.

Maybe have DH enroll SD13 into a few child therapy sessions to work through whatever is bothering her.We never tried that although it was suggested by me but BioHo shot it down and my Disney Dadeee husband  did not argue with her decision although they shared custody.