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Bsmom's picture

She is actually my adopted daughter. I married her dad in 2006, he got custody in 06, mom signed all rights and never saw her again in 07, I adopted her in 08, real mom died in 09. She was 7 when I started becoming her parent. She just turned 11 yesterday. I used to be her stepmom so I never spanked her. This is what we all agreed was best for her. Her dad and mom and occasionally her gma disciplined her with spanking. I totally believe in spanking (only on the butt of course) and spank my 2yr old son when necessary. Now my mom in law and stepdad in law are saying that she is turning into a total disrespectful brat and I need to be spanking her. They won't let it go and have had me in tears several times discussing it. My husband just says what he thinks I want him to say about it. He doesn't like it when she does something in the middle of the day and I send her to her room and then he has to come home from work and spank her hours later. I know this isn't fair to him, but I don't know what we should do. If I had started a long time ago then it would not be a big deal, but starting now when she is a preteen doesn't feel right to me!!! They refuse to hear me out and say that what we are doing (dad spanking, grounding, etc) isn't working so we need to turn to God's Word and the Bible says "don't spare the rod." But does anybody see my point of view?
Also, we were going to counseling in 2007 after her bm signed over her rights and sd told the counselor that I pulled her hair. The real story is that she was throwing a temper tantrum and I was trying to cup her chin to make her look at me and I accidentally pulled her hair. I said sorry immediatly and told her that I didn't mean to pull her hair. She didn't tell the counselor any of this of course. So I am concerned that if I spank her she will turn it into some bullshit abuse story and tell someone at school. She has really turned into a manipulative, lying preteen the last few months and it is only getting worse. WHAT SHOULD I DO PEOPLE??????????? HELP!!!!

glynne's picture

I don't have kids of my own just a SD and she's grown. But after reading your comment it sounds to me like you don't want to spank her and also think that she is too old to be spanked. I've never believed in spanking but again, I'm not a BM. I was spanked (many times) as a child and I survived but think that there are better options. Time outs, taking away rights or belongings etc.

I think that you need to read what YOU wrote and go with what YOU think is right. She is your child now and you will make the right decision.


ReadySetNot's picture

Dont spank her seriosuly, the BM will probably just get pissed and haul yout o court or something terrible like that I pick up SS because he was being a unholy terror and plunked his ass down the couch and he told his mother that I slapped him across the face and she wouldnt even hear me out she just flipped out on me and started just dont

jojo71's picture

however, I think you are right in that she should not spank the child. How are you to spank a child when you don't feel right in doing it? Even if this were your biological child, if you didn't feel that spanking is right, don't do it.

Orange County Ca's picture

Absolutely do not let the father spank anybody after the fact. The punishment must be immediate. Otherwise the connection is "Daddy comes home - I get spanked". Not "I did wrong - I got spanked". Daddy is simply the ogre.

As for a 11 year old there must be a thousand ways to punish her. Anything she uses every day - just take it away. Time in her room is only effective if she doesn't have anything except books in there. Take all that stuff out.

A computer should never be left in a pre or teens room anyway. Put it in a public room for her to use.


There's an exception to everything I say.

ReadySetNot's picture

I remember my parents doing this to me around that age, taking EVERYTHING out of my room except my bed and dresser. then not allowing me on the computer or to watch tv or talk on the phone for a certain amount of time

Trying-to-blend's picture

This has been an amazingly effective tool with my 6 year old daughter who has been diagnosed ODD btw. But don't think that spanking can't be an effective way to get her attention whether you have done it in the past or not. Kids push limits so they know they are there and can feel secure with where they are in the universe.........she is pushing and you are not pushing back. Believe me a swat won't hurt her and it may snap her out of the self focused phase she is going thru. Everything in moderation, even moderation Wink just MHO

“Only one thing has to change for us to know happiness in our lives: where we focus our attention.”

Bsmom's picture

We feel like we have tried every kind of discipline--taking things away, grounded, cancelling play dates, early bed time, etc. The same behavior-talking back, lying, just not doing what she has been asked to do and excuses, arguing, etc. We just started seeing a counselor in July. We are starting to think this may all be signs of ADHD. Her pediatrician said in 2007 that she has ADHD and prescribed Conserta but I didn't give it to SD. Her counselor back then said she didn't have ADHD. She was just nervous because I am so intimidating or something like that. The new counselor said the talking back and lying are impulsive behaviors. That SD really doesn't think it through that there will be consequences for her behavior. SD said on Wed. when she got spanked for lying that she really can't stop lying. Does anyone know anything about ADHD??? I really need to get some answers cause nothing works with her. We have had a HORRIBLE week. I know I need to change my attitude and maybe "lighten up", but I just don't think I am ever going to be OK with her lying and talking back to me EVERYDAY!!!!!!!! It's taking it's toll on my marriage. Help.

justwantpeace2's picture

I think that when you are preteen, the spanking thing is not really something that needs to happen. There are so many other things that are important to kids of that age. Withholding those things for long periods are very nearly life threatening to kids! If you have to remove everything from her room but a bed and a few clothes, I think that she will learn when the stuff doesn't come back as fast as she would like it too! The trick is to not cave and give the stuff back just because she is showing tears and remorse! Don't just make her suffer for a day or two....we are talking a week or 2 at least! and don't cave! She will appreciate her stuff when she gets it back and will seriously think twice or she might think that you won't catch her again. Make sure that she understands if you catch her lying again, it will be double the length of time! Seems drastic, but when your at this age, you either have to be drastic to get their attention or you might as well throw in the towel! It could take a couple of times before she knows your serious. Hopefully are are not dealing with a child who could care less about her stuff/space/friends.....then I don't know what to tell you!

Angel72's picture

BM abandonned her in 2007,
You adopted her in 2008
BM, real mother, died in 2009

So you have gone from Stepmother to Adoptive mother.
The child has emotional issues due to her past and the loss of her real mother. Not to mention her real mother abandonned her.

1. She's 11 and in my opinion way past the age of spanking. Neither you or your husband , her father, should do this. Its preteen age.

2. Punishing should occur the moment an incident happens. So sending her to her room is correct. BUt adding grounding and taking away privilages should also be added. And this can be done by either together or your dh can talk to her after he comes back from work and tells her about grounding and privilages taken away....

3. Your house, your rules, Grandparents have no say. So they can keep talking but they need to understand you guys will handle it. If they dont like it, then they can choose not to come around.

4. Speak with the coucilor and if things do not get better, then maybe changing cousilors or psycholist will help.

So in the end, spankign is totally out of the question due to age. Not so much in your case relationship. Her mother has died and you have adopted her. YOU ARE HER MOTHER NOW. AND SHE NEEDS TO UNDERSTAND THAT AND KNOW THAT YOU ARE THERE FOR HER. You are not just your husbands wife. YOU ARE HER MOTHER NOW. Family sitdown to explain to her or in couciling together to explain you didn't replace her mother. Your her second mother.
My mother passed away and i understand what she is going through. I call my stepmom, mother, because she is my mother. She never adopted me, i was in my teens when she came into my life.

Question; what does she do, that mother in law thinks is bratty?
Because maybe its a normal age thing.
p.s Tell mil, that raising of your kids, is your dh's and your job, not hers or her place to say such things.

Angel72's picture

i meant enough coffee in me this morning!!

Most Evil's picture

You could give her a swat but depending on her size it could turn into a physical fight, which would set a bad precedent. To me spanking is for younger children and I don't see anything wrong with a few swats on the behind.

Now she is growing up and grounding her or taking away belongings or priviliges will probably have more effect. Also if you can get her back to counseling, she is probably definitely grieving her mother and needs a (healthy) outlet for her feelings about that.
Age cannot wither her, nor custom stale
Her infinite variety.

William Shakespeare, "Antony and Cleopatra", Act 2 scene 2

andrea's picture

They refuse to hear me out and say that what we are doing (dad spanking, grounding, etc) isn't working so we need to turn to God's Word and the Bible says "don't spare the rod." But does anybody see my point of view?

The rod that it is talking about there is used to guide not to beat or spank. 11 seems a little too old to be getting a spanking by anyone. Have you tried removing priveledges? grounding? taking away allowance?

Talk to your husband and don't do anything you feel uncomfortable with.

I let my husband spank the SS, but I do give him other punishments, such as removing his tv watching priveledges or games or even toys if it comes to that

Rags's picture

line. You are her parent whether you are bio or with a prefix (Step or Adopted).

She lives in your home and she defies you at her peril. A spanking delayed is ineffective at best so I would sit her down NOW and inform her that any future behavioral issues (lying, etc...) will result in appropriate discipline up to and including corporal punishment.

I got my last spanking at 14-15yo and since I was raised by Ward and June Cleaver I figure you have ~4more years to put some nice stinging pink color on your daughter's butt cheeks if she does not toe the line on the family rules of behavior.

As for the accidental hair pulling ....... that is history and was an accident. I had my own experience with a similar issue when I was about your Daughters age. My Mom missed my butt and got the back of my legs when giving me a spanking and I got totally offended. I stood up, put my hands on my hips and said "MOM! You hit my legs. That is not a spanking. You can swat my butt but that is it!" Then I bend back over the bed for the rest of my swats. Mom was so taken aback by my reaction that she stood there speechless for a minute or so then started laughing and walked out of my room. She later apologized and said that it was an accident and that in the future she would aim more carefully on my butt. This aligned with my then 11yo sensibilities and all was well in the spanking world.

So, I recommend you review the rules and hold her accountable for her actions and for receiving the appropriate punishment for her behavior.

Good luck and best regards,

Success is rarely final. Failure is rarely fatal. It is character, courage and consistency of effort that count. Vince Lombardi (with some minor Rags modifications) To each according to their performance, screw Karl Marx. (Rags)

imagr8tma's picture

situation. But if you don't wish to spank. Take her favorite things away. Television, toys, play time.... and add some chores or assignments in their place.

It has be long enough for her to get really frustrated with her actions to want to change it. Taking the tv away for a week use to work wonders in my house - and add vaccumming, dishes and cleaning the bathroom, or picking up trash out of the yar.

She will get tired of being made to do manual labor in the place of having fun time.

Worked for my daughter when she was younger. All i got to do now is threaten the cell phone and she snaps back to it.

********She doesn't have to love me or even like me - it doesn't change a dang thing..... So get over it and move on BM!************