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To be greeted or not be greeted

mama_althea's picture

A common thing I read here is skids ignoring SM and not even saying "Hello" or "Goodbye". Sometimes SM is disengaged, sometimes not. Some insist their DH/SO/BF make the skids greet them, some do not.

Anyway, I don't know which is worse: not being greeted, or receiving a forced a greeting.

I think it is at the least rude and the the worst pretty passive-aggressive for a 6 year old, but SD often chooses not to greet me or ignores me if I greet her. I'm more or less disengaged, so I leave it alone, although it is one behavior example I can point out when SO brings to a discussion that he thinks I just plain don't like her. I'm sure if he weren't so oblivious or if I wanted him to he would make her greet me. I think I prefer no greeting to the forced greeting. I don't need anything REAL to foster any resentment on her part when there is plenty of friction for no apparent reason. Plus, bad as this may sound, I don't want her to get any satisfaction in thinking she had some sort of effect with ignoring me.

winehead's picture

It's just good manners to acknowledge someone coming into the room. If she's allowed to ignore you, will she ignore teachers that she doesn't like? A boss? I know she's only six now, but if she doesn't learn respect (even for those she doesn't like) NOW, when WILL she? And her father should be teaching this. Or, is the 6-year-old in charge of deciding what is and is not acceptable?

BellaMia's picture

I had this discussion MANY times with DH. His head was always too far up his precious angels' asses to see this for himself. When I addressed it, you would have thought I was speaking Vulcan. I finally got over it and started coming and going without saying so much as "H..." let alone "Hello."

mama_althea's picture

Yes, all good points. In our case, SO is clueless about her doing this. He is on her about "please" and "thank you", but never sees her doing this. As far as teaching her respect, not to sound harsh or cold, but I'm not sure it's my responsibility or if I even really care to. Same goes for her lack of hygiene, table manners, and negative personality. SO is blind to most of this and the things he can see he doesn't think he can make a difference on the weekends, so he pretty much has thrown his hands up in the air.

Plus, I think what I was getting at is the respect "real" if the skids are just forced to say the words?

I like the question "is the 6-year-old in charge of deciding what is and is not acceptable?", and although I will have to change it to 7 soon, I can predict many future instances where it will come in handy with SO.

hismineandours's picture

Yeah we've had this neverending debate as well. My ss is 13. He'd like me to fall off the face off the earth. He is very upfront in stating that he does not like me and has not for many years. I've been in his life since he was 1. He would spend a whole weekend, week, or month in our house not speaking to me if he could. When we had him for a month the other summer-he went 8 days without initiating one word to me-I did speak to him and got brief, abrupt answers or none at all.

So I've gone thru phases were I've commented how rude it is that he acts as if I'm not here. Dh will then tell him he has to greet me. Eventually it becomes a big game. For example, ss will walk in the door a couple minutes before dh-and not greet me of course. Dh will follow along and say, "SS, did you greet hmo?" to which ss replies, "yes". Of course I pop up and say, "no, I dont think so" which then starts the "I did, I swear I did, SHE just didnt hear me". Or other times he will walk in before dh and walk by me two or three times-finally dh will come in and THEN ss will say, "hi". Obviously its not remotely genuine. And I finally decided that I'd prefer him not to greet me if he is going to play these sorts of games. The last two times he said hi were particularly unpleasant. He showed up one morning (unexpected to me) and walked straight to my room and interrupted me in the middle of my conversation with my dd and her friend, so I didnt reply. This was also the morning after he spent the previous night talking bad about me and my kids to dh's sister and her family. Of course, then that became a big deal. "see, dad, I try to be nice to hmo, but she just doesnt like me!" The last time he said hi to me was this last visit-right after we found out he has been smoking pot regularly and has been growing it in bm's front yard. I didnt answer him. I got chastised by dh on that one. It's really become just a power struggle so I'd as soon not hear it.

paul_in_utah's picture

I completely ignore SD17, and she completely ignores me. Works out fine. If I am in the house at the same time, I will do individual activities by myself until she goes to bed. This way, I actually get uniterrupted time with DW. Sometimes I can talk DW into going to get coffee, etc., and leave SD17 at home, which is also nice.

Kes's picture

I am for the most part disengaged from SD14 & SD16. SD16 and I always greet each other, we have a civil relationship, and occasionally even a conversation. SD14 is another matter. Sometimes she greets me cheerfully, others I am completely ignored. If the latter, I do not chase after her to say hello, I take my cue from her. We completely ignore each other most of the time, so it seems a bit daft to insist on a greeting. What I find MOST peculiar, however, is that both girls, on leaving or arriving, sometimes come at me for a hug. WTF???
The kind of relationship I have with them is most definitely not the hugging kind. I sometimes submit to being hugged, but usually I shrink away, and indicate with my body language that this is not going to happen. I can't bear SD14 hugging me when I know she loathes my guts. Why would anyone do this?

Roseybird's picture

KES - What I find MOST peculiar, however, is that both girls, on leaving or arriving, sometimes come at me for a hug. WTF???

Me: I thought it was just me?!>?!? My SD15 does that same sh*t. It's more of a forced thing that DH told her to do a long time ago - always come in and hug and always go out and hug. UGH! It drives me. She's getting better at it though - that is seeing my body language and realizing that I don't want to be touched, hugged, or anything from her. Weird, just totally weird.

hbell0428's picture

This is a huge one going on in our home right now!! SD14 is so nasty I am really ready to expolde. I am torn between - LOVING her not talking to me but then get pissed and think it's giving her the impression that she is the boss at the same time.....strange? I see her treat her Dad like a complete piece of crap; she doesn't give a crap about anyone in the house but herself; she is a nasty girl to be honest. My BD12 only talks to her out of fear - SD steals whatever she wants from her and dad just fakes like everything is fantastic and it makes me sick. SD will walk right past ANYONE and only talkes to you if she needs something from you!

Then I am afraid I am going to loose it one day and bite her head off!!

B22S22's picture

My SK's won't speak to me, even if their dad "pokes" them to say hello or good-bye. And they've been doing that for over 6 years.

I used to worry that it was giving them "power" to think this was acceptable (was my silence acquiesence?).

And then one day, when their dad "poked" them to say hello and they refused, I looked directly at the three of them (DH and SK's) and said, "Oh, that's OK if they don't want to talk to me. My success in life does not hinge on whether or not I'm liked, accepted, or even acknowledged by a couple of snot-nosed teenagers."

(And I profusely thank StepAside for allowing me to loosely plagarize)

That statement right there told them everything they needed to know.

Auteur's picture

It is DEFINITELY a matter of respect and I'll go one step further.

Good breeding/manners DICTATES that younger ones should greet older ones FIRST

In the manner of introductions, the younger one is always introduced to the older one first.

Mrs. Elderly, I'd like you to meet Johnny, Johnny, this is Mrs. Elderly. . . and so forth.

My skids ignored me too. I walked up to Prince Hygiene who was sprawled out on the sofa taking up all the space, wearing his infamous "mini diaper" at 4 in the afternoon watching the dreaded "Icarly."

"You know it's rude not to say hello to someone when they walk in"

So then he said a forced "hello" while still looking at the TV.

I then stood in front of the TV and said "I said it's rude not to say hello to someone and MEAN it when they walk into a room."

He got the point.

JustPeachy22's picture

SS4 and SD 8 greet me and I say hello and that is about it. I have no interest in engaging with SD beyond that, I've learned my lesson. They spent one night and grandma's and one night with FDH watching movies in the living room while I watched my grown up shows in the bedroom. I am fine with it being this way. FDH doesn't like it, (I think deep down he wanted the perfectly perfect stepford stepmother and he is now realizing I'm Not her)

StayorGo's picture

And you shouldnt have to be Smile

If you are anything like me...SD is well provided for, she will never go without, she will never go hungry and will have all her basic needs met while in my care. But I do not believe I need to fill any gaps between her being with us and her seeing BM again. Which is 50/50 custody.

Its funny, I never thought a child could have too much attention given to them but with SD I believe she gets so much attention from EVERYONE that she can not function unless she is the center of attention.

I am not a jester to entertain the child and have no desire to be.

JustPeachy22's picture

Will your SD cause some sort of interuption if she is not the center of attention? SD8 has tons of love and support and just alot of family on BM's side plus FMIL adores her. BS13 is my priority, he is the only responsibility I ever concieved.

StayorGo's picture

My SD does not greet me or say much of anything to me. Since the majority of the time her words are incoherent at best! We do not have a speaking relationship so for me its okay. She talks like a baby and makes me nuts doing that so really I dont miss not talking to her. She can save conversation for her Dad and BM.