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SD19 refused to leave her room

Shieldmaiden's picture

I posted quite a bit about sulky (likely bipolar) SD19. For years, she has been getting slowly worse. She avoids any new challenges, such as learning to drive, getting a job, and making new friends. After thanksgiving 2022 she stopped visiting us, which was a relief. She now lives full time at BM's, and DH calls her to say hi every evening, and check in with her. 

DH was on the phone last night, and as usual, SD19 was terse, annoyed, and angry sounding. He asked what she did that day. She said "NOTHING." He asked what she busy doing now (you can hear her clacking away on a keyboard in the background) and she says " Watching You Tube, or Playing games on the computer."  

Well SD let it slip that she got her waist-length ratty hair cut, and she sends DH a pic of her hair in a very short boy-cut. It looks cute on her, and we tell her so. The next day she says that she has decided she made a huge mistake, and HATES her haircut. She says she won't leave her room until it grows out. We thought she was kidding.

The next night DH calls her, and the next 3 nights after that. Every time, her sister (SD17) says that SD19 is holed up in her room, and has taken the family computer into her room and never stops using it. DH calls SD19 and confirms that she is eating dinner in her room again. He says "Wait, were you SERIOUS when you said you weren't leaving your room until your hair grows out?" She says through clenched teeth "Yes." 

What does DH say? "Oh. Okay. Well, good talk. Bye." 

On one hand, I love that he is not getting sucked into her drama. On the other hand, does he really think she will get better if neither of her parents does anything to get her some mental health assistance?  



1st3rd5thWEInHell's picture

I too have a lazy 21yo SS who wont leave his room unless it is to go to the living room when his father is around


Its amazing and I am very happy that he doesnt come out. Seeing how abusive he has been in the past, its best to let dead dogs lie....


Leave her be and enjoy your life as she was non existent and how easy it is since she is locked in fhe obligations for you!

Shieldmaiden's picture

As long as she stays in her room at BM's house, I'm happy. I just worry that one day she will attempt suicide, or run away after a fight with BM, and land on our doorstep. I've let it be known that she is not welcome to live here, but.....

you know how DH's can flip flop. So far, DH is over it. I want him to stay over it and out of it. Not sure if that will happen if she is crying crocodile tears on the front stoop.

1st3rd5thWEInHell's picture

Omg at BMs home! Thats even better! Out of sight, out of mind! I, too, made it clear that anyone over 18 was not welcome even if they had a fight and YET....third time moving in for the 21yo (its everyones fault but his) and I now have realised this will be a lifelong burden....If they have no school/job, be ready to have them permanently or very often in your home. Strangely, the BMs kind of cut that stuff off once child support ends....BM even charges her kids rent lol so of course, living with us is more advantageous!

He wont stay over it for long. SS21 was sleeping in his car and calling his father every day crying about his life....needless to say after 3 days of that, he was invited to move in after my husband had said he would never allow him to move in again after his previous stunts....It never lasts because they have this unconditional love and servitude to their kids and expect us to feel the same!

I really hope for your marriage that she becomes independent....or else....this may make or break your home life situation. It definitely broke mine

JRI's picture

I'm sure your BM is no Einstein but she must not be worried if she's delivering food to SD's door.  I'd let it go awhile and see what happens.

Shieldmaiden's picture

BM doesn't worry about her kids. If they get too demanding she she goes out on an extended vacay with her latest boyfriend. Seriously, this chick is cold. When she tires of the charade of motherhood she will simply kick SD out.

Survivingstephell's picture

Then you make getting proper (aka psychiatrist )help a key component to moving in.  You make compliance a daily requirement for staying another day.  Once she is stable then you make a job requirement.  Lay this all out for DH when needed and if needed give him the ultimatum, me or her.  You have to be ready to die on this hill.  Were you working on an escape plan too, or am I getting you confused with another sufferer?  

Shieldmaiden's picture

Back when SD19 was still living part time with us, I tried making a family therapist a mandatory thing. Her dad and I also went, and it was making progress for awhile. Then SD claimed to forget her appointment and flaked on us at the last minute. We went to pick her up at BM's house and she claimed she was babysitting her 8 year old cousin and couldn't leave her alone. So DH tried to flake out and I said "nope. we are going without her then." 

The therapist found it interesting that DH didn't want any consequences for flaking out on us, even after we reminded her same day and left work early to be there. DH and I got into a fight in front of the therapist. Then DH said some choice words to therapist and she dropped us. Fast forward to last Thanksgiving and the skids tried to start a coup to claim they could be a familiy again if only I wasn't there. DH went to work that week and collapsed on the stairwell, nearly having a 3rd heart attack. He was ok but decided that the stress of trying to appease his greedy spawn was killing him. So he finally yelled back at them and told them if we were such bad people then why would they want to continue coming over?   

Since then the youngest SD17 has done a complete 180. She is nice, polite, and seems much happier. Her and her dad and I get along well now, and all it took was for him to enforce some rules. No disrespect toward us in our home. Clean up after yourselves. Don't chase my cat into a corner and wonder why she tries to claw at you. Don't demand things. End of story.

So, to answer your question - no - I wasn't one of the people ready to leave their husband. I gave him an ultimatum, and he chose me. It did take 10 years of hell, though. SD19 will not live with us, ever. SD21 is not allowed in our home. SD17 is ok in my book. She is growing into a nice young lady with a mind of her own. Even she is annoyed with her sister for her antisocial behavior.

My husband and I are so much happier now that he is able to see what I saw for years. He knows that he doesn't want to go back to that role of being walked all over. 

StepUltimate's picture

Hair grows approx. 6 inches per year, so if it's gotta be waist-length before she emerges, you have a couple of YEARS of freedom ahead!


Harry's picture

She not going to change by herself, There nothing you or DH can do. Hopefully a professional person like a MD can get her on druges to help SD.  

thinkthrice's picture

As step parents we cannot care more than the bioparents because it will end up biting us.

No good deed goes unpunished.   Couple this with stepMOM ALWAYS being the convenient scapegoat.

I would be inclined to say "bummer" then shrug and walk away.


CLove's picture

Hmmmmm. Bummer, Wow.

TrueNorth77's picture

Does no one care if she launches? This is not normal behavior. It's like everyone has just thrown their hands up and lets her do what she wants. 

If they're going to just let her continue on this path to failure, hopefully at least you will benefit by having a skid-free home. 

Shieldmaiden's picture

Exactly! Why does no one care? I don't understand that. They are like "Well. You are 18 so we can't force you to do anything. Just don't interfere with bioho's new relationship and you can stay there until she needs to make your room into a home gym " 

WTF is wrong with these people? I get why DH threw up his hands - because she hates everyone and its all his fault, according to her. She doesn't live with us so I guess its bioho's problem. We have no leverage.

Shieldmaiden's picture

Yes. I sure am! Bioho's chickens are all coming home to roost! I hope it irritates the crap out of her. She is responsible for making this monster.

Shieldmaiden's picture

Yes. I sure am! Bioho's chickens are all coming home to roost! I hope it irritates the crap out of her. She is responsible for making this monster.

Exjuliemccoy's picture

Just be prepared for when BM gets fed up and boots SD, because she'll want to move in with you.