How do I disengage with my stepdaughter? This relationship is making me physically ill.
I have been in my second stepdaughter’s life since she was one and a half (now 12). Her older half sister since she was 13. My boyfriend and I don’t plan to marry. We also have a child together. She is 8. I’m a terrible stepparent. In fact I became a first time mom at 39. I am lost most of the time. I cater to 3 other finicky people and a dog before I ever consider myself. We have been experiencing some rough patches. My stepdaughter (Blayke-12)has environmentally created learning disabilities from not being simulated enough as a child. She’s on medication for anxiety as well as Ritalin and she’s exhibiting signs of sociopathy which scares me. My boyfriend (her father) has a doctor to prescribe him Ritalin and other meds as well and now his personality is completely changed. My daughter, Ava, and I just try to manage as best we can. Blayke, my middle (12) stepdaughter has become addicted to YouTube and shows that are horrifying. Gacha shows that depict bullying, sexual assaults, trying to goad unpopular girls into committing suicide. She pretends she is doing school work but she’s switching between video after video from 9am to about 5 or 6 pm. Her watch history for March was 450 pages long and this is a child who is going into 6th grade while being unable to create two sentences that one could understand. Dad constantly says it’s his fault for not securing the computer better. There is a problem here and her parents refuse to address it. How do I protect my child from this? Am I ridiculous being so angry that this keeps happening. My daughter is learning from her older sister to be deceitful and lie and know that there are no consequences.
Their father plays favorites and spends most of his energy on Blayke and her education. Not actually teaching her, just sitting beside her while she pretends to work. Meanwhile, our youngest ours told that she had to wait (to get help, go to the park, or have any of daddy's time) until after Blayke's day is complete. It breaks my heart watching my daughter wait in like behind a child that knows she's holding her up under the pretense of competing important assignments but in reality is watching videos.
When I confront her father his response is... what do you want to do... beat her? There’s nothing I can do.
Of course I don’t want to harm her but discipline instead of constant coddling might be helpful. When my daughter laughs too loud he gets irate. And this is HIS child too. When my stepdaughter lies, steals, watches cartoon snuff pieces she gets a new app to play on her phone and a “here you go sweetheart”.
I’m in the twilight zone and I need some advice. Leaving isn’t yet an option. But it’s starting to look like one. How do I focus only on my child without being the bad guy. My boyfriend only sees it as me punishing Blayke for no reason.