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no more table setting

Cover1W's picture

I rarely, rarely set the table when YSD16 is at our home because DH thinks it's silly and makes things more complicated to have her do it (even when she's here for the weekend doing ZERO....she has no chores because that's an awful idea).

Anyway she's picky about Everything and that extends to tablewear. I set the table last night as I was ok doing so. She comes up, of course only after DH yells to her that dinner is ready, and promptly changes out her utensils. I say, what are you doing that? We'll, she likes the small forks (note that I gave away all the literal toddler forks she sometimes brings from BMs because she'll use those instead). I say, why don't you try using a dinner fork....the DH gets all over me and why am I asking anyway? Because it's WEIRD, it's Weird that a 16.5 year old prefers to use child size utensils.

DH can agree with me and complain to me about her lack of maturity when she's not around but once I try to actually help, which he proclaims to want to do, the backlash against me happens. oooops I stepped in too far!

So from now on I'm never never setting the table when she's here. Done with another thing.

caninelover's picture

In our house (unless we're having guests for a dinner party) we never set the table.  Just pull out the dishes and silverware and leave them in a pile for grabbing.  If SD wants to use the kiddie fork, ok, she can go get it herself.  We also just get up and serve ourselves straight from the pot/baking dishes.  Yes, I am too lazy to properly put food in serving bowls LOL. 

stepmomnorth's picture

Saves dishes to just have everyone grab right from the pan it was made in.. I don't put everything in pretty serving dishes. Just leave it on the stove or counter and the kids grab their own :) 

Cover1W's picture

Oh, ususally we do this. Last night DH cooked so serving was up to him. I was setting the table because I felt like being nice.

caninelover's picture

Exactly my logic.  Minimize dishes.  Of course, if guests are invited then I'd serve everything properly.  For day-to-day meals - plates are there, food is there.  Come and get it LOL.

ndc's picture

I'm not sure what you mean by small forks.  Are you talking about actual children's utensils, or just salad/dessert forks?  I personally prefer eating with a salad fork.  I find dinner forks to be too big.  BUT, I do know the difference and if I'm at someone else's home or at a restaurant where they set the table with multiple forks, I will eat with the proper one, even though I'd prefer to use a salad/dessert fork for everything.   My parents taught me about utensils (how to set a table, which utensil to use for which course), but allowed me to use what I wanted at home.  

In your situation, I would be PISSED with my husband for getting all over me about questioning the fork, especially if he did it in front of her.  That's especially so since HE complains to you about her lack of maturity.   I hate these bio parents who feel free to complain about their kids, but go nuts the second someone else does, even if it's someone who has to live with their kids and put up with the skids just as much as they do.  Disengage.  Don't worry about her forks, and don't set the table for her.  BTW (and I'm sure you're already well aware), your husband does the kid a disservice - and doesn't help her to mature at all - by not having her do chores.

Cover1W's picture

Child size. She brings them from BMs. I think the toddler sizes are gone now.

I use salad forks sometimes too, but if someone else sets the table??? Sometimes she'll change out the plate too. Drives me nuts. So she'll get to do it herself here on out. Problem solved.

stepmomnorth's picture

Thats a fair solution. Sometimes its easier to just stop something so you don't have to deal with it. This stuff frustrates me too. It is rude to switch out what was set out for someone. Then be snippy /rude/know it all about it... Argg. So many times my step daughter would say something about how much better bio mom did something. Like.. MY MOM only uses organic sugar or she doesn't use eggs and it tastes way better etc. Enough already. Yes our house has major world issues because we use sugar instead of apple sauce for baking or something equally as stupid. 

caninelover's picture

YOU don't set my plate, utensils.  I'LL DO IT.  LOL. Minor teenage oppositional bs.  Let her do it, and ignore it.  Once it's ignored she'll probably fall in line over time.

Though it is annoying. All teenagers are annoying.

caninelover's picture

Wouldn't do this.  But...probably should.  It would yield more well- adjusted young adults.

In the upside down step world, good luck with any basic parenting.  The Bio-parents just don't do it.

caninelover's picture

This is what my parents did to me.  And I was notoriously picky eater as a kid.  But ny parents had bigger issues in their plates, eg make money to pay for the food on our plates.  So if we whined about the food, our the the place setting (ha!) we would not eat and go hungry until breakfast.

I get what your saying but many parents now don't do this :(   

reedle2021's picture

My parents did the same.  We ate what was being served and we certainly didn't demand different plates/spoons.  Nope.  If we didn't like the food/dinnerware, we would go hungry.  End of conversation.  If we complained?  A slight whop upside the back of the head would put a stop to that. 

Harry's picture

Go to a restaurant,  she is going to bring her fork.   When she eats at other peoples home or at BBQ. She brings her FORK.  Just a control game she is playing.  Disengage, let her control her fork. She can wash it polish it  if I get my hands on it it will find a new place like garbage pail

Cover1W's picture

I donated all of the toddler sized forks as they came into the house during last year. At least those are gone! I give up on the others. I'll get rid of them eventually. Only a limited amount to time now I have to be around all of it anyway.

stepmomnorth's picture

In all honesty I probably would have laughed... And said something like, "oh Im sorry... If you want to grab the toddler fork have at er...". It's kind of funny. I tend to call out funny things! 

Cover1W's picture

It reminds me of when we were visiting DHs sister and her partner was making dinner and getting completely exasperated by the SDs food issues and declarations.  His own daughter, half their age has none.

When he served dinner the SDs (13 and 15 then) were served on the colored plastic kid plates and with the kid utensils. They were horrified and internally I was dying ROTFL.... brilliant. He didn't cook for everyone again. He knows I knew what he did there.

Stepdrama2020's picture

Get the 16 yr old a sippy cup too.


Maybe set the table with chop sticks LOL

reedle2021's picture

It sounds like she maybe does it as a control thing?  Or just to be difficult?  Not sure, and I certainly don't mean to offend.  But, it's very bizarre behavior.  Maybe you should treat her like a toddler and just give her finger foods so no silverware is required.  Smile

Cover1W's picture

Its all related to her growing into a teen/adult. She doesn't want to and prefers to think of herself as a child. Yes, it's messed up and neither parent is helping her grow up with confidence.

Merrigan's picture

Your SD sounds just like my SD's 15 and 18. Both refer to themselves as "children" and eat off of plastic kids dishes from ikea. SD18 immediately goes to the toddler section of whatever store we're in, saying she's just being nostalgic and a kid. They both still have daddee tuck them in at night and pour their drinks. His entire family is aghast. I'm fully disengaged so I don't give a cr@p.

Edibles (legal here) also help.  *biggrin*

reedle2021's picture

"Its all related to her growing into a teen/adult. She doesn't want to and prefers to think of herself as a child. Yes, it's messed up and neither parent is helping her grow up with confidence."

Oh my... not good.  Not good at all.  Sad

Badger1986's picture

Oh the weirdness  of children but worse when they're step children. My ss will use like a bowl, plate, two spoons, two forks, and a jack rabbit to eat a Sandwhich. One time I confronted him and his mother said, "he just likes it that way." So, I shut up, let him do it his way and I don't setup his utensils  anymore. Doesn't matter the meal, he can do the madness and my wife can clean it! Man disengagement feels sooo good! 

Ispofacto's picture

Opt out of eating with them.  Avoid her as much as you can.


Aniki-Moderator's picture

This makes me think of Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle and The Slow-Eater-Tiny-Bite-Taker Cure. 

Give her DOLL dishes and a 2" fork!

CLove's picture

She has small hands so I always just give her salad fork, or whatever.

Since her Pouty McPouterson showed up at shared meals together I stopped pressing for "ok time to set the table for our mealtime together" and I stopped calling SD for dinner. Any "gathering" will be done by DH.