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Counselling - does it help?

Try's picture

Does anybody have any experience in resolving step parent issues with counselling? This is an avenue I have decided to take now as I cannot continue being miserable for any longer and having found out I am expecting my first child I really want the issues resolved. Me and my stepdaughter just do not seem to be able to live together, we are like chalk and cheese, and it does not help the situation that both her bio parents are very passive and do not discipline her or teach her right from wrong. I'd love to be able to parent her but I feel unable to feel any warmth towards her, and this is why I have decided to try talking therapy. Just wondering if anybody has experience with this and if so, did it work for you?
First time poster, sorry for waffling on Smile

DeeDeeTX's picture

It only helps if your DH is willing to change. The counseling might help a little with you finding better ways of dealing with Sd but I don't think major changes can happen unless DH is on board with changing.

DH and I went to counseling , not just about step issues, but when it came to step issues, DH basically said he felt if he withheld money and imposed consequences, he'd never get to see his kids again, and he wasn't willing to risk that. So basically discussion went nowhere.

Try's picture

Yes, this is what I mean. I totally understand I cannot change them, but I can change myself. Hence the reason for wanting counselling. I also think she needs guidance, which she is not getting and I am not currently in a position to give her. I am looking to counselling to change and/or help me deal with the negative feelings that feel as though they are taking over my life at present.

frustratedstepdad's picture

^Absolutely! A lot of counselors have NO clue on dealing with stepfamilies. We went to see one, and her suggestion was that we treat SD22 more like a roommate than our child living with us. One of my complaints about SD22 was that she would just leave and go somewhere, leaving us stuck with taking care of her kid. The counselor's suggestion was that we make a calendar so that we can see in advance where everybody will be.

Fuck that! First of all, roommates pay RENT. SD22 putting her travel plans on a board for all of us to see didn't solve the issue of her not taking responsibility for her son. Needless to say we stopped going. Sometimes it helps to just talk to a counselor by yourself so that way you can be completely honest without worrying about hurting somebody's feelings.

giveitago's picture

The juvenile judge ordered family counselling, since SD was THE worst category offender, and beyond, that they could list. DH and I had evaluations done and family counsellor came to the house. SD had the counsellor paranoid within seconds of her arrival, about her hair! My eyeballs just rolled around behind closed eyelids...
SD totally controlled every session and it was absolutely pointless.
Enter another therapist, who was like 20 years old and saw it all from SD's perspective...eye (not drum) roll please!
We finally saw a counsellor who had good common sense and her and I chatted, ohh yeah...forgot to mention, according to SKids and they convinced DH, that I am the one who 'needs' therapy because I was the one who did not fit in. I am thinking, OK, I'll go with this because I believe none of us are ever beyond accepting good counsel. This lady was awesome! She asked DH some pointed questions too, he could NOT wriggle out of them with her...LOL.
Basically the marraige is the key, it was established that DH and I have a good marraige and we want to stay married. Raising the kids was the only stumbling block, we had totally different ideas and the kids were cashing in on that BIG time. I was advised to step back a little, let DH deal with the kids and refer them to him every time they asked me for something. I think SKids and DH thought they had some sort of little victory, hahaha short lived that was! DH pretty soon saw what hellions they are and he did a turnaround. None of them realized exactly how much I did actually do for them, nor did I to be honest, until I found myself with all this wonderful free time on my hands. The whole thing came to a head after they shouted down the stairs at me 'you are not our mom and we do not have to do what you say!' Damned right I'm not, and I don't have to jack for you iether! I was never mean or nasty to them, and they found a new respect for me and things did improve. I would NOT listen to them bitch about how bad their dad was because he would not let them do this, or that or whatever like he listened to them, I'd change the subject on them. SD is THE most manipulative girl the juvenile justice system has encountered. She foxed them all except the judge and one probation officer and SD almost lost that woman her job because of lies and manipulations...fortunately the juvenile judge was aware.