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I feel guilty for not wanting SD

JessK87's picture

I have a 4 year old SD who is the result of my boyfriends ex trying to 'trap' him into staying with her. She stays with us from Saturday am to Sunday am, and the odd Tuesday night. She is generally a happy girly girl, and boyfriend is a fantastic dad. There's the odd hoo-ha with ex but nothing we can't handle.

You're probably wondering why I'm posting if everything is going okay, but I just can't shake the feeling that I resent SD  being around. I have never, and will never want kids because I love mine and my boyfriend's life together, we have plans to travel, build a business together and generally live life as best we can. I live in a tiny house  (which is my own, my bf lives with me) and having SD here just feels like such an invasion. She talks all the time,  asks constant questions, is quite loud, talks with her mouth full, interrupts every time I try and have a conversation with bf.... Basically everything that I find annoying! There's toys everywhere, our Saturday's have to revolve around what were doing with her, and I just can't help but feel it interupts the time at the weekend that I want to spend just me and my bf because our time together in the week is limited.

Ive never really liked kids and although I try to put up with SD I can't help but wish that she wasn't around. When shes here i feel pushed out and resentful of the attentiom im not getting. I feel like i go from being put first in my boyfriends eyes to being last and basically ignored. I feel so guilty and unreasonable for feeling like this because she's only a child and it's not her fault!

Will things get better? Will that maternal instinct start to kick in with her? My bf and I are soul mates so there's no chance of us breaking up. Might I just have to put up with it? 

Old sm's picture

Not wanting someone else's child is actually quite normal so don't feel guilty. You may never feel maternal towards her. She is a pretty typical 4 year old, it sounds like. 

However, knowing you don't want kids and being involved with a man that has a child is pretty much on you. She's not going away; she's going to be there forever. You made a choice to date a man with a child so harboring any resentment when she is around is going to be a problem for you. It's hard to not be jealous of his daughter, I get that. But you are going to have to suck it up if you continue to stay with him and figure out if you can live like this for the next 14 years with every weekend being centered around her. 

Alsi, one more thing to consider. If something happens and she needs to live with you full time, will you be able to handle that?

sammigirl's picture

You situation is the normal road to step-parenting.  It is not your fault, nor your BF's fault, and for sure not his child's fault. 

You note, you do not want children and there is certainly nothing wrong with that.  You are feeling guilty, because you are expecting a different life and it does not include this little girl, nor any other children.   No guilt feeling needed here. 

It will not change, your SD4 will always be a part of your life if you stay, and her Dad will always be a very large part of her life.  It will get more difficult for you in the years to come.  If you do not want this in your life, now is the time to walk and find someone that also has your expectations for the future.  It will never go away!

Good Luck.  ((hugs))

Curious Georgetta's picture

Like you she wants her father's undivided attention.. She is acting and behaving like a 4 year old.

If you have the special relationship with her father that you describe them you should share your feelings with him about his daughter. He deserves to know the truth and your both deserve the right to be in an honest relationship.

If he is your " soul mate " , then you are not risking anything by being honest.  You deserve the right to be happy in the kind and type of relationship that you want , and the child should not have to spend time in a home where she is viewed as an unwelcome intrusion to be tolerated but not celebrated as a valued part of the family.

You are not yet married to this man. If your need for a relationship with no children is as significant as you say it is,please think twice before you inflict unhappiness on both yourself and an innocent child.

 

ndc's picture

I don't think what you're feeling is unusual, and I don't think you have anything to feel guilty about other than perhaps not being honest with your BF about your feelings, if that's the case.  However, I highly doubt things will improve.  If anything you'll probably grow more resentful.  And please don't completely discount the possibility that he could end up with SD all the time.  I think that's unusual, but it happens.

I'm in a somewhat similar situation, as my SO and his 2 girls (3 and 5) have moved into my house with me.  Let me tell you, the older one can be a handful, and displays all of the behaviors you described, but she's just a typical 5 year old.  The difference is that I enjoy having them around (at least for now).  I have the occasional feeling of resentment, but no overall feeling that the kids are invading my life and I don't like it.  I just embrace the lifestyle that includes parks and Chuck E Cheese and tripping over toys; it's different but I don't mind.  If I did, I would move on.  Young children are going to be around for a loooong time, and it's not fair to you, your BF or his daughter for you to live with them with a lot of resentment.  

sunshinex's picture

One thing I can guarantee.. children feel resentment.

Lets just say you want to stay in this relationship and you understand SD is here to stay... 

You need to minimize resentment and this starts with telling BF how you’re feeling. If he’s on board, you can setup a “safe space” where you’re not around her/toys. For me, this is our bedroom that’s off limits to SD. You can also elect to not be responsible for parenting. You can choose when to be involved and make it positive (ie take her shopping, do her nails, plan trips to water parks). Do things that build a fun girly friendship. 

Its hard for some men to swallow that being around their kids isn’t always a joy, but if he can understand and work with you, you can all live peacefully without harbouring any resentment. 

My husband had a hard time getting on board initially but once he did, I was able to stop resenting his daughter and build a friendship with her. We’ve since had a baby and I’ve started being more of a parent figure so there’s new issues due to my own maternal hormones lol but that’s a whole other story! 

 

strugglingSM's picture

Your feelings are normal. I liken it to having houseguests every other weekend (in my case). They come, they expect to be catered to and entertained and DH disappears off into his role of being a father, meaning I am basicaly a single woman again for those weekends. A single woman who is expected to cater to houseguests and be extremely happy that they have joined us for the weekend, that is. 

As someone in a similar situation - I never really wanted kids and also have big plans for non-kid life - I can tell you that it will not get better. If I knew back then what I know now, I can honestly say that I would not have gotten married. I wasn't expecting our life to be perfect, but I was expecting DH to live up to what he agreed to, which was basically making sure that he and I had a life that did not revolve around his kids and that he and I did things like travel and have adult hobbies. The few times we've traveled alone, he's spent the whole time talking about how much more fun the trip would be if his children were there and then acting as if I was the wicked stepmother because I wanted to enjoy time just the two of us. 

DH and I just had another blowup because he thinks I'm not friendly enough to his kids when they are here and he is upset that I won't promise to help them buy houses if he passes away before they are old enough to buy houses. I should mention that he had nothing but debt when he met me...couldn't even afford his own place, was living with MIL...and the only reason we have any savings is because I'm a stickler when it comes to budgeting (which he also gets annoyed with me about, thinking he should be able to spend money as he chooses), so any money that would be available would be mine, with minimal support from him. I should also mention that barring any unforeseen accidents, he has decades of life ahead of him, so having this conversation now is ridiculous, but I refuse to "promise" to do anything that I don't know that I'll be able to do financially. Also, DH brought no assets into our marriage and I wasn't planning my savings around paying for two kids to buy houses, so I feel no obligation to provide anything for his kids. 

The short version of this is that when one person brings a child into a relationship, it creates a power dynamic where the person with the child feels entitled to more because they have a child - more money to spend, more say in how holidays are spent, more say in how free time is spent. It's tiring and I often think that I made a mistake. 

With regard to the advice above, DH told me repeatedly that he did not expect me to be a second mom to his kids and I've told him that I do not want to be the parent when they are here, but DH doesn't do it, so here I am. When they want or need something, they come to me. When it's time to remind people to pick things up or throw trash away, I'm the one to do it. And these kids are 12, but act like they're 4, because DH only sees them four days a month, so he doesn't want to waste that time with parenting. 

Think long and hard before committing to this relationship. If you are young, consider it a lesson learned and find someone else who does not have children, does not want children, and can share the life you want with you. 

s-kill me's picture

"And these kids are 12, but act like they're 4, because DH only sees them four days a month, so he doesn't want to waste that time with parenting."  THIS. 

Gingersnapped's picture

 My point is, everything is on the table, and you can walk away. You have the luxury of owning your home; boyfriend is living with you without having to pony up anything ( a ring, marriage?). Get on equal footing with a single guy sans kids, who doesn't want kids, for your sanity's sake. It's NOT going to get better. Been in this rodeo 10 years (granted I have my own kids, but they've been up and out for over 4 years) and raising his kids 50% of the time, dealing with psycho ex wife and delusional husband makes me jaded like this. 

If I can save someone else heartbreak, I'd like to. So, in closing, please...cut your losses and move on.

lorlors's picture

If I had stumbled across you sane people, I would never have married DH. I am lumbered with two teenage stepkids permanently living with me because mummykins is deranged. 

It can and DID happen to me.

theoldredhen's picture

Hey Jess,

I am one of the stepmothers who seems to be in the minority on this site; blessed with a DH who had my back when his daughter began to really act out and who was willing to communicate sanely. He is the love of my life and we have a solid marriage of 32 years standing.

Despite all that, the first few years of my marriage were pure hell. There was scarcely a day that did not find me in tears, bitterly regretting my decision to leave my home, job, friends and family to move in with my husband and his teenaged son and daughter.

Right now, your SO’s daughter is very young, yet you are already experiencing resentment and annoyance. When she becomes a preteen, then a teenager, your negative feelings will multiply, trust me on this!

The fact that you are feeling neglected while your boyfriend focuses on his daughter points to one of those mini-wife relationships that girls are so apt to develop with non-custodial dads. My SD was a master of manipulating her father in order to shut me out and make me feel like an intruder.

Soul mates come and go but children are pretty much forever. Leaving your relationship will, doubtless, be painful but not nearly as painful as the misery that you will face in steplife. It’s an unnatural, difficult muddle of children and adults that almost never works.

I’d love to offer some positive suggestions but, because you are feeling resentment so early in the relationship, it’s bound to increase and cause you great unhappiness.

Hon, bait your hook and cast it into the waters again to catch a better fish; one that’s childless!

still learning's picture

It sounds like you and bf's lifestyles are on the same track except for on the weekends and whenever sd4 is there.  Your bf is living two lives, loving doting partner to you during the week then shifting to single dad on the weekends. 

Are your feelings wrong? Absolutely not, in fact it's completely normal for a single woman who's built a simple life in a tiny home to feel put out by a young child, all her toys, behaviors and accompanying issues.  It sounds like your bf does not know how to incorporate you into his weekend parent mode. He's bf during the week and dad on the weekends with no incorporation of the two.  Can he learn how to be both? Sure, but does he want to take the time and trouble to do that. He's got a great set up that you're providing so why would he want to change?  

From my limited viewpoint it seems like you and bf have very different values. He loves his dd4 and obviously wants to be a big part of her life and you are tolerating rather than celebrating the situation.  As another poster mentioned, what if something happened to BM and sd4 had to live w/you in your tiny home full time?  It's actually quite common for a BM to change custody either permanately or temporarily due to some event in their life. Will you ever feel motherly instincts towards her? If it hasn't happened yet it's not likely.  

Your bf was one of those that were *tricked* into creating a baby hmm?  He must've skipped Biology 101. In my experience if a man truly does not want a child he'll do whatever is necessary to prevent it.  

s-kill me's picture

I also just wanted to point out that no one "tricked" your boyfriend into being a father.  That idea always drives me nuts.  I know it can be easier to blame the step-situation on an evil BM, but in reality, if your BF took precautions because he didn't want a child, there would be a very very very slim chance that he ended up with one.  Accepting that no one "tricked" your BF would probably be a good start to mending your feelings towards SD.  She isn't a pawn, she's a child.  His child.

 

(That being said... I think getting out now is sage advice).

Saint_Gus's picture

There's nothing wrong with you at all for feeling how you do.....however it's sad and incredibly unfair to the child (who is not much more than a baby). She's so young, might you be able to help mold her into a child that you find pleasant and enjoy being around? If not, you need to let them go. You deserve everything you want in life, and they aren't it unfortunately. They also deserve everything out of life. If there's no way to create a living situation here, you're doing everyone a disservice by prolonging it. If he won't end it, you should. Good luck

fairyo's picture

You say you and your boyfriend are soul mates and there is no chance of your breaking up. I remember when my X told people we were soulmates too, I thought it was a forever relationship because we were getting on in age and our separate families were grown-up and adults. How wrong I was- after nine years of trying to deal with his enmeshed relationships with his kids I walked. My advice is don't waste another minute of your precious life forcing yourself to like the unlikeable. He will never put his child anywhere else but first- think about whether you love him enough to put up with that. You will be damned if you try to interfere because you care and damned if you disengage because you care more about yourself. However valid and reasoned your arguments you will never be right and not only will you will never win, but you will be ridiculed, ignored. gas-lighted and made to feel like a gibbering wreck- youwill lose your self-esteem and your self-control.So, if you thinkyou can handle all that go ahead-but it is already sufficiently bothering you enough to seek advice here- it won't get better, the guilt will turn to anger and resentment and you risk bitterness and frustration becoming your default emotions. Is he worth that? Do you deserve better? Ask yourself those questions and let us know how you are getting on.

ProbablyAlreadyInsane's picture

Don't fret if you never feel maternal. I'm very much so not a maternal person. I'm good with kids, coached 6 and unders in swim team (also 12-18 year olds) and taught 5th grade for a spell (teaching assistant... But the teacher decided to ditch and then I was the pemenant substitute... LOL, the offered me a full time job after). I was even a nanny for a while. I generally like kids, but I have never had to desire to pop kids out and watch them all day.

I'm a full time stepmom, not a role I ever saw myself doing, and while I love the girls VERY much and see them as my girls. I also have those moments where I'm just done and need them to go away, or where I get annoyed that they need so much done for them (don't worry, I'm raising them independent! Since we got them full time their independence has skyrocketed!). It just is what it is. Not ever woman has this magic maternal instinct, we don't fit some cookie cutter mold, and that's fine. You just need to accept that and be you rather than force yourself to be something that you're not.

I would try not to resent her, simply because it's no more her fault that your bf's fault that BM decided to try and trap your bf. (my Bm did the same with both skids... 1st was a "now you have to marry me and I can get your military benefits" and second was a "s*** you realized I've never been faithful, yet forgave me for the girls' sake... So now I'll have another so you can't leave..." child) For a while near the beginning I was a bit peeved, I never wanted kids of my own, I literally wanted to shoot things for a living, I wanted to travel, hike, run an iron man, hike everest, all things that suddenly no longer seemed possible because I was bogged down by kids. But I'm still working towards my goals, and my DH knows that, because of his support I should be able to accomplish them still (except maybe everest... But idk if I even want to do that or if I was just hit with this sudden enthusiasm... lol). Even if you never become maternal, try not to resent the kid, she's a normal four year old, isn't being abnormally agressive or rude, and it's not her fault either. Just get on the same page with your bf and see what you can do about accomplishing your goals still! Smile

(disclaimer, I do TONS for the girls now, I have a strong moral code and refuse to watch a child suffer, plus tbh they're becoming MUCH better kids now, and while I'm not maternal, i do want to see them grow up independent and strong and able to accomplish their goals as well.)

ESMOD's picture

"(disclaimer, I do TONS for the girls now, I have a strong moral code and refuse to watch a child suffer, plus tbh they're becoming MUCH better kids now, and while I'm not maternal, i do want to see them grow up independent and strong and able to accomplish their goals as well.)"

 

That was also what I wanted.. raise the kids to be self reliant and independent so that my DH and I would have time and resources for OUR lives when they turned 18.. worked too:)  neither of them get any financial assistanc from us.. although we do give them gifts at holidays.. or special occasions.  Nothing huge..

ProbablyAlreadyInsane's picture

Exactly ESMOD! Raising them so they'll launch and be productive members of society!!! Here's to hoping it works for me too Wink

JessK87's picture

Thank you for your response and advice. Luckily my boyfriend and I agree on how she should behave and he is very good and pulling her up on manners etc such as being polite saying please not whining when she doesn't get her own way etc .I think the problem is her mum doesn't do these things so she's coming to us after being with her mum for 5 days and she's forgotten everything we have taught her (for example before she started coming to us she didn't even know that she had to wash her hands after going to the toilet, and had no routine about brushing her teeth. She's even had to have a tooth out because of decay which at 4 is shocking IMO). I think this is going to take a lot of patience and with someone with zero experience of kids (me!) It's very difficult. I think I resent the situation more than the girl, in that I constantly wish it was different, but I guess it's the way it is and we work with the cards we are dealt and I should make the best of the situation 

ESMOD's picture

Oh.. man.  I get where you are coming from.  When I met my DH, I was in my mid-30's and childless.  I believe I asked him at least 3 different times if he had kids.  The answer was always the same.. Yes a 5 yo and a 9 yo.  He asked why I kept asking and I said that I guess I hoped the answer would change...lol.  Growing up, I didn't imagine myself having kids... and while I think I may have been ok with having a child with my DH.. that boat sailed without it ever happening so now I am still childless at 52.. and his kids are now 20 and 24. (both independent in finances and living on their own mind you).

I also had had about zero experience with children when I met him.  Obviously, I didn't develop some magical maternal instinct towards them and the fact that they had a toxic BM and were.. well.. just kids who can be aggravating, needy and mannerless at times didn't make things always easy.  But, I did have to come to terms with the fact that they did in fact EXIST... and that they would be part of my life going forward if I married their father.  At varying times we did visitation and we also had YSD live with us for a while Full Time. 

I think it is really important to have open and frank conversations with your BF about what everyone's expectations and responsibilities are in the home.  Will he accept you telling him things that the girls need to work on?  Will he allow you to set boundaries and rules in your home?  Will he always put you 2nd in priority? or will he prioritize his kids every time?  When I met him, I told him I understood if he had to put the kids first.. but he corrected me and said  NO.. YOU are going to be a priority and the kids most certainly won't always be put first...even better, he lived that sentiment.  Sure, sometimes the girls had needs that took precedent.. but so did mine at other times.  He also gave me the free rein to set rules in our home and he welcomed my input as to how his kids were behaving and their manners and such.  When I met them.. they both were not good at the please/thank you and cleaning up after themselves.  After a few years.. we had been able to teach them to be more pleasant to be around by enforcing manners and social norms.. like not interrupting adults and such.

Now, one thing that does worry me in your current situation is that you are getting the girl every weekend.  is that really the case because it certainly would be nice to have a child free weekend to do some more adult pursuits.  Then again, look around you.  Kids go everywhere (well just about) you can travel with them... take them to restaurants.. breweries.. concerts etc... My SD's got very versed in the road trip life and we spent many weekends running off to FL or to go trout fishing, going off in the boat etc... They went along with what WE were doing and they really benefited from that.  Shoot, my YSD is off on an adventure in Iceland this week. 

The other great thing is that you are there now.. at 4yo she is impressionable.  Make her into the kind of child you would like her to be... easy going.. polite..   Nothing wrong with working with her on neatness with her toys either.  Of course, her dad needs to be on the same page... and should encourage all of it in her.  But, no reason why you both can't work to make her the kind of kid that people actually enjoy being around.  Will it always work out?  no.. she will try.. she will fail.. she will try again and eventually she may not be the same amount of annoying that she is at 4.. You don't have to love her.. but you should be able to treat her with kindness and be welcoming since she is coming to her father's home (you own it.. but he lives there too).

JessK87's picture

Thank you thank you thank you for your sane, sage advise. I feel some advice on this website is coming from a place of anger but yours is coming from a place of experience and understanding. I would absolutely be on board with the 'joint parenting ' approach and i think that having a weekend a month just the two of us will offset the anxiety I feel about having her every weekend. I will certainly try and apprpach this with a different mindset and speak to my OH about setting certain boundaries etc. Thanks again Smile

ESMOD's picture

It always is helpful if you craft things from a positive perspective... instead of kvetching about the toys all around you say it would be good for her to be more organized.. a good skill to learn.  or that it's a safety issue and you worry someone will get hurt because everything is so close in.... OR.. you craft a place that can be "all hers" to play.  Honey.. we should make a play space for her so she can feel like she has a place of her own.. where she can play with all her toys etc..

Believe me.. I didn't know squat when I met my DH.  First trip out with the girls the younger one had to go potty.  Well, I had no idea what to do but offered to take her in the little girls room.  She did her business then proceeded to call me into the stall to wipe her butt.  I had no idea whether that was a skill a 5yo had or not so I balled up a bunch of toilet paper and did it.  I told my DH what I had done... and he scolded her because she DID know how.. lol.  I told her that I hoped she didn't mind when I repeated that story to every guy she ever dates.. and I have ... evil grin.  It's a family joke now.

It's possible to get through it.. but if you truly don't have any tolerance for kids.. and some people don't.. it can be tough at times.

 

blayze's picture

Why do you have to live with your bf? I mean, can’t he find a place nearby and you can visit each other almost every day? You’re probably feeling resentful because she IS invading your space AND taking your man’s attention from you and you’re getting nothing out of it. It’s a lot better when you don’t have to witness this...believe me. You can still be soul mates without living together. 

ROOP's picture

Girrrrrl!!! I am in a very similar situation! I do resent the child. She’s also 4 and she’s terrible. She does all the things that annoy you, and throw in several screaming and crying tantrums. 

Here’s what I do with the frikkin toys:

if she’s playing with one thing, and goes to the next, I make her clean up the toys before playing with something new. It’s non negotiable. Before she leaves to go her mother’s again, I make her clean all her toys and put them away in “her” room. Non negotiable. I refuse to pick up after her. 

Her mother is “was on birth control”, she was an illegal immigrant here, miraculously got knocked up, told my Hubs he has to marry her and do the right thing. She moved into his tiny apartment with her autistic son from another father who she brought here illegally. She proved to be a Peggy bundy. Refused to work bc she was pregnant, did no housework, no cooking, refused to learn English. After a few months he told her he would not marry her, she then called the police and told them he punched her in the face. He spent 3 nights in jail, she got an order of protection against him. He filed for custody rights in the court, and when he had his first unsupervised visit, she filled a little bag for the kids with milk and snacks and clothes and framed pictures of the kid. She messaged him constantly and even went so far as to call him several times. He doesn’t answer. I think she’s given up by now. 

I think your SD can have potential to be a good kid, as long as you have rules for her in your home. I totally feel you on wanting to spend all your quality time with your BF. Same for me girl! But unfortunately this is a package deal. It’s his kid and will always be his kid. Whether he wanted her or not. 

 

Try to be patient. If you love him and he’s worth it, be patient and let it be. But set rules for your home for sure!

JessK87's picture

Thanks for relating to my situation! His ex told him she was on birth control too but that was a lie. They had already broken up before she told him she was pregnant. I do definitely need to practice patience, however being a naturally impatient person I guess I keep hoping things will fall into place quickly but I guess it will just take more time than I thought. .!

Blue Moon's picture

I agree with what the others are saying, this is really a tough situation. I'll just add that the schedule your SO has is also really hard for a relationship : he has his DD every single weekend, which means you never get a w-e just for you and your SO. No dates ever on a saturday... If there is a way the visitation days could change, I think that could help you.

JessK87's picture

I agree and I think I'm going to suggest that, once a month, she stays with her grandma and let's us have a weekend of us time. I used to really look forward to the weekends but now to be honest I dread them, which is heightening my anxiety.  It would be nice to look forward to one weekend a month, instead of dreading all of them 

AlwaysSmiling's picture

 "I can't help but wish that she wasn't around. When shes here i feel pushed out and resentful of the attentiom im not getting. I feel like i go from being put first in my boyfriends eyes to being last and basically ignored."

Take out the 'feels' because you ARE being pushed out, and ignored! This is the beginning of mini-wife syndrome. He centers his life around his child and she becomes the focus of everything. This is not the way life is supposed to work. The core should be the adults- that's who should be the center with children on another layer. Putting your child as the center teaches them that the world revolves around them, and leaves them with a sense of entitilement. You are going to have to start demanding more attention from your SO while SD is around. She has to know that you are the adult and his partner, not her. 

Take out the 'maternal/step mom' aspect by asking other questions:
Think of it like this, if she were your kid, would you put up with your partner ignoring you to pay attention ONLY to kid? Probably not.
If she were your kid, would she be allowed to keep her toys out, or would she be taught to put them away?
If she were your kid, would you put up with rude behavior, or correct it imediately? It's okay to say, "Sweetie, when adults are talking, it's rude to interupt." or "Sweetie, hold on a sec, me and your dad were talking." 

Your feelings are normal. 

JessK87's picture

Thank you for telling me what I'm feeling is normal, I was beginning to think I was being a terrible person. My boyfriend is quite happy for me to discipline her which I try and do as I know it's important to set boundaries and ensure she knows I'm the adult. To be honest not having kids myself it's difficult to know what I would or wouldn't do if she was my own!

AlwaysSmiling's picture

It's going to be a learning process. You learn as you go and you adapt when you make mistakes.

It's good to hear that he's ok with you setting some discipline. The best peice of advice I got on discipline was from my dad when I was very young. He said that love & discipline go hand in hand. You have to think of it like a bank account. When you do loving things, you make deposits. When you discipline, you are making withdrawals. So you have to make sure that you don't take out more than you put in. Discipline without love is highly ineffective. 

Since this situation is still new to you all, no one really knows who does what, who is supposed to sit where, who gets hugged when, etc- I think you get my drift. I would suggest boundaries that help establish some of that. If for example, you are feeling twinges of jealousy when she always sits next to him- try buying a special chair, just for her. At meal times, arrange for her to sit across the table from him (so she can see him but you as partner should take the seat beside him).  

Another thing you should definately do in front of her be affectionate with your man- hug and kiss your man, laugh and be silly it's ok for kids to see this. This will help quench your feelings of being neglected. And it helps teach a young girl what to expect from a future mate. So many times we don't want kids to see that, and then they don't understand what to expect, bc they've not witnessed it. 

Anonymous01's picture

I have never told my husband that sometimes I can't stand my SD, I love her to death, but she is at the age where she just gets aggravating. so I totally understand how you're feeling. I have never resented her being at our house, but like I said she just gets frustrating even though she is a WONDERFUL child!!! Have you mabe thought about taking your boyfriend's daughter to do something just the two of you? If you two bond and you two have that love for each other it is undescribeable.

JessK87's picture

That's a great suggestion,  thank you. Generally we do get on very well, and weirdly have things in common (our love of animals for instance). I'm just having a hard time adjusting to all of a sudden having a 4 year old around when I have had little contact with children up until now. Its a lot more difficult than I thought it would be 

marblefawn's picture

I don't like kids and I never wanted any so I get what you're saying.

But let me ask you this: would you go to the store to buy a dress and come home with a fish? If you don't want kids, why would you pair up long term with a kid (because that's what you're choosing - a kid with a man attached)?

I know this guy seems great to you now, but he's not -- not because he isn't a great guy, but because he has a kid you don't want and that kid will be there FOREVER. If you leave him after 20 years, he will still have that kid attached to him.

I can tell you this: kids and traveling the world do not mix. You resent the kid now for a lost Saturday. You'll be on your sofa for resenting the kid for the rest of your life because it doesn't sound like your SO is earning a lot and raising a kid is expensive.

Girl, if you want to travel the world, you need to make the right decisions now to make that possible. And the first worst decision you could make is hooking up with a kid who isn't yours and you don't want.

theoldredhen's picture

Yo, marblefawn,

Your comments were inspired! I’ve never heard a more enlightening summary of this issue.

Absolutely, a woman who dislikes kids and marries a man with a kid ‘attached’ is, in fact, marrying a kid with a man ‘attached’.

Sad to say, marblefawn, that our OP has already made up her mind to stick with her guy, despite the baggage that will end up robbing her of her happiness.

Jess, so many women here on ST start out convinced that love conquers all only to discover, too late, that it does not and that they’ve made a terrible mistake. You’ve been cautioned, the final decision is yours to make.