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16 year old SD who steals

OregonMom's picture

I would like some advice from people who hopefully have been in this situation before.

I met my husband in 2004 and we were married in 2006. During 2004 and part of 2005, the kids BM would shower me with affection and praise ("the kids speak so highly of you"!) while at the same time trashing BD (my boyfriend) every chance she got. How he didn't honor their visitation schedule, how he hurt the kids all the time, how he would promise to pick them up and then not (painting this picture of kids standing at the curb with bags packed looking down the street and crying), how he wasn't paying her enough child support, and even (TO ME) saying how he spent too much time "with his girlfriends" at the expense of the kids.

This is at the same time that she would promise extra time for him and then call last minute to cancel, telling him he needs to drop everything and drive the kids to a sports activity right that minute (she did that during several of our dates), etc.

After I got to know him better and saw that he in fact was an amazing dad who went to every school function (many times she never showed up), every sporting function, spent tons of time with them, coached soccer teams, etc etc...I started defending him. One soccer game she made a beeline for me as soon as he left to go stand with the coaches and started trashing him again. I started saying "You know what, that isn't really what I have been seeing, he seems great with the kids."

From then on I was the enemy. She would email him to try and break us apart, say that they had a "wonderful coparenting relationship" until "you met ", say how much I was hurting the kids because I seemed to "always be around" and sometimes "THEY didn't want me to be around" (even though I got along great with them and brought stability to their dad's life), and also talking bad about me to the kids. She would find out that I would plan to go with my SD to a cheerleading competition then email my (now husband) to say that she was taking her instead...on HIS weekend.

So naturally SD has not grown up respecting me and although she has to admit she likes me as we get along great, she also has a lot of conflicts about me since she is getting fed negativity and encouragement for disrespect at any chance by BM, who is incredibly pissed she did not succeed in breaking us up and rather, we got married (she herself is still unmarried).

So my SD is now 16, but I have noticed as soon as we got married, when she was 13, that things would start disappearing around the house. At first she would ask me to use something then not put it back, I would find it in her room. Then she would ask to use something and it would get packed in her bag and go back up to her moms (since she used it once it must be hers right?) Once while driving them to their moms i happened to look in the rearview mirror as she was saying something and saw she was putting on lip gloss...MY lip gloss. She put it back in her purse. I said "isn't that mine?" and she said "oh...uh...I saw it on the floor and didn't think it was anybody's". Riiiight.

Then it got to the point, in the last year or so that she has started taking things without even asking. Thank God so far it hasn't been anything huge, like cash or computers, but still it bugs me. Like she will ask me if I can have a blank CD from a brand new stack of them and when I tell her yes, I notice after she's gone that 14 of them are missing. She'll ask me to buy a box of tampons to use at our house and the entire box will be gone that weekend. She has taken things from their bathroom that we've provided them to use while here - bathroom towels, curling irons, hair dryers, whole unopened bulk bags of cotton balls, towels. To me its a total disrespect/entitlement thing (her mother has a huge entitlement problem too, going in my husband's house after their divorce without knocking, even once climbing through a window to get something she wanted, when the front door was locked).

Just before Christmas this year was when I finally had enough with the SD taking my things. I had packed luggage for a trip to CO to visit my family (stepkids were not coming with us as we would have to have them during BM's parenting time and she has thrown a fit when we've done this in the past). I walk out of my room the night before and I notice my bottle of facial toner that I had packed in a zipped toiletry bag, is outside the luggage. I pick it up and it is completely empty. In other words SD went into my bathroom to use it (probably had been using it all along without my knowledge), didn't find it on the bathroom counter, so went digging through my LUGGAGE to find it and use it, then didn't bother telling me it was empty, or even put it back, just dropped it on the floor next to the bag.

I went downstairs bottle in hand and asked if she had used it. She lied and said "I don't even know what that is" and then "I don't think I used it". The next day while dropping them off I told her that I knew she had used it becuase the bottle was empty and I specifically checked how much was left before I packed it. I told her I didnt want her using any of my things anymore, including other examples such as athletic clothing she'd used without asking and is now missing.

Well, after Christmas she sent her dad an email stating that she was no longer going to come down to our house. And after two weekends of not coming down (a month's worth), she wrote him another email basically blaming me for not coming down, she said she was sick of dealing with my "bitchy" comments to her and she can't imagine living in a household where people don't "share" things, and that I better shape up because 'moms just don't act like that'. She said I should "try to act like a mom", even though her first words to me after her BD and I got married were, "don't call yourself my stepmom".

So now my husband is in a tough position. Basically he wants to see her so bad, but we feel like she is going to manipulate it so that if we discipline her while she's down then she simply won't come down. I say fine, have it your way but we are sticking to our guns, which eliminates the manipulation. But my husband disagrees and says "Look I just want to see my daughter". He is willing to put up with it (probably because it isn't his stuff being stolen). He promises he'll talk to her about disrespecting me, but he is afraid of her and wants to be her "buddy". He has notoriously not disciplined her since she's been little (a common theme I have read on here). So I really doubt much talking is going to go on. And they both have said they don't want my "involvement" in talking to her - my husband backs her up on this one so she has succeeded in dividing us which makes me even more resentful of her.

Anyway I'm wondering what I should do. She has the largest bedroom in the house and we have a 1 year old biological child together in a tiny cramped nursery and she is starting to get more things and I'm thinking about switching their rooms since my 1 year old lives here full time and the SD has not been here in 2 months and says it will be a long time before she comes down again (if ever). Should I keep a bedroom for a spoiled brat who refuses to come to visitation? Should I attempt to address the email she sent her dad (she told him not to show it to me but he did anyway, then when I got upset he said "I knew I shouldn't have shown it to you"...doesn't change the fact that she said some awful things about me to my husband). I'm not sure if I should just ignore her, and how much say do I have in my own house? My husband thinks we should keep the bedroom for her "just in case" while it sits there and collects dust.

If anyone has been in this situation before with a SD stealing the SM's stuff, trying to make the BD think badly of SM (his wife) or teenager refusing visitation because she's jealous she isn't center of attention anymore or doesn't like our super basic discipline rules ("hey don't take stuff")...let me know how you handled it. Or what you think I should do.

Thanks for reading! Its been a really tough situation for me!

dsngrl's picture

hmmm.. that is a tough one.. sheesh. You are going to resent DH if he doesnt stick up for you and your things, and SD is going to resent DH if he stands his ground and scolds her. To address the question about the room situation, I think you should move baby's room to bigger room (since baby is there full time). SD is only there 4 days a month. Second, would a conversation with SD help? Be as nice as you can be, tell her she is welcome to use your things she just needs to be respectful and ask first. I really think this is something you and SD need to work out. Leave DH out of it since he will be forced to take sides. Not good for either of you.

Sus's picture

Oh,boy, I just went through this when I was in FL with my grands and their friends.(used MY items)

First since she has refused to come & its been two months . I definetly would move the child who lives there full time to the Biggest room. let her enjoy it.

And when Step comes back tell her why you changed rooms.(you refused to comesowe thought you wouldn't be needing the big room any longer)

WITH MY TEENS, WE HAVE 2 MASTER BEDROOMS AND 2 REG SIZE BEDROOMS
..I SLEEPIN ONE..MY DAUGHTERS, TRADED ROOMS EVERY 6 MONTHS SO BOTH COULD HAVE A "BIG" ROOM..( TO CUT OUT THOSE ARGUEMENTS) IT WORKED WELL., PLUS THE ROOMS GOT A DEEP CLEANING LOL

Stolen items-before i left for TX in DEC. I had a girl,Kim, come clean.
She was doing the guest Bathroom & When I went to talk to her FOUND about 120.00 worth of MY cosmetics USED-EMPTY..I had NOT even used them. Most were Gifts from FH.
Last time I went to TX my grandson stayed at the house (fl) watching the dog. Apparently his Girl Friends USED my items. I was livid.
I asked GSon about them he said NOPE I didn't use them
I said, well they were in my bathroom on the shelf..I doubt if the DOG moved them.on of your girls did !!!
I almost called his Main Girl friend. But I didn't. Now NO one watched the house. And yes I am Still TICKED OFF..She had NO RIGHT to go in my room. I almost want to make her replace my items...still mad about it.

Now I wonder if anything else is missing..I have a BIG house packed with things..IF Kim( cleaner) hadn't found the empty items under the sink, in guest bath, I wouldn't have really known they were gone , until I used them again.
I keep doubles in Both houses so i don't have to carry cosmetics when I travel from House to House..That will END come Spring when I move..Thank God.

As for your SD...Explain how she would feel if you took & used her items & didn't return them..Like her laptop..or something she really loves. Until it happens to THEM, they don't seem to UNDERSTAND, especially if they didn't worked hard to pay for the items.

I probably would take her shopping, promise her a shopping trio.
BUT with attachemnts.
have her help you clean or do something to EARN the money or part of it for the items you will buy.
I want her to KNOW THE VALUE , of working & SPENDING.

Then take her & Buy her the items she needs.
Tell her there is NO reason to LIE. That you know she has & you will forgive her this ONE TIME & she should appologise.
And IF you catch her again, YOU will NOT Buy her anything.
let her realize how expensive these items are by taking her shopping.
let DADDY Pay for her things ..NOT YOU.
And also tell her you know how long these items will LAST ( a month, 2 months etc) and they are to be used at your home. She may take some things home but MUST ASK & bring them back when she returns.
That you'll only replace them..When the time has gone by & she brings you the empty item.

And IF anything else DISAPPEARS ( LIKE COTTON BALLS, cosmetics ETC SHE MAY BE TAKING TO MOMS & leaving them there ) YOU WILL NOT REPLACE THEM!!!

MAIN THINGS IS HER TO STAY OUT OF YOUR BATHROOM & BEDROOM, IF NEEDED BUY A KEY LOCK USE IT WHEN SHES VISITING.

Most Evil's picture

I don't like people using my stuff - I have had too many sisters, cousins, roommates, friends, who went shopping in my bathroom, and never returned the favor! I don't even say if you ask it is ok, it is not okay ever (unless you were in a natural disaster or something maybe), my mascara, hairbrush etc. is for my personal use only!

I agree that if she needs something, and you can afford it, to maybe get her own.

If it is using your stuff that she enjoys, I would lock your stuff up. It is a huge pain in the ass, but it would stop your stuff from walking out the door. I would even ask DH to search her bags before she leaves, if she comes back, if it continues. She definitely gets the smaller room now.

This is just a power play and disrespect thing, and you do NOT have to just accept it like DH says. I know this has happened to me with my SD18, and it does make sense that some reasons could be no longer center of attention and not wanting any discipline. Oh well, tough shyte, stay out of my personal belongings!

Stay strong
_________________________________________________________
“Learn by practice.” - Martha Graham

TattooQT's picture

I am in a similar situation except for the stealing. My things do tend to disappear though...
My brother used to steal when he was a kid, it is a play for dominance. I will take whatever I want and you can't stop me. It is an invasion and she is doing it to show you she is the one in charge, she can come in your home do whatever she wants, take whatever she wants and you'll just have to shut up and take it.

I would make swift and blinding punishment every time something goes missing. I would call her out in front of her friends, family, classmates whomever as much as it takes to show her that you are in charge. Humility is a good thing in this case. The more you show that she can't get away with it and it will become public knowledge every time she takes something it will decline. Follow that up by taking something of hers, grounding her, or some other punishment will make it stop. Make her motivation to be avoiding the negative consequences and it will end.

Those are just my thoughts.

Take care and good luck.

OregonMom's picture

Thank you so much for all the advice. I walk a fine line because I don't want to upset my husband. He is sensitive to not welcoming his kids at his house because his parents did that to him (told him at age 20 when a job wasn't working out that he was not welcome back in their house). He said he'll never tell his kids they aren't welcome. I assume this means, regardless how they are acting, and thus wants to keep a room for her.

If it were up to me I'd sell the things in her room (Pottery Barn Teen EXPENSIVE stuff that I bought as it was all my idea to decorate her room nice), and her personal stuff like incidental clothes, etc would get brought up to her mom's in a plastic bag.

Regarding the advice to talk to her about how she would feel, she literally doesn't care. That doesn't work. She is unfeeling and defensive. She will first insist that she wouldn't care and wouldn't make a huge deal out of it like I'm doing (SO uncool right?), and when I pressed, she would just say something insulting to make me want to stop talking to her. I've seen it in action against her own father in the past. She's broken his heart with stuff she's said, and shown absolutely no remorse.

I think at this point probably the locking idea is the best one, you're right it will be a pain in the ass and I can't lock everything in the house but I can lock up my personal stuff (bedroom/bathroom) and what's in her bathroom I can keep close inventory on. Its easier when there are only basics in there...right now she's got like 5 different face washes, etc, all from me (I'm a product junkie lol) and some of the stuff that has made me break out or I just haven't had a chance to use it all I have put in her bathroom for her use. I'm thinking all that needs to disappear and 1 item of each type (one shampoo, not three) will make it easier to track.

I fear I'm in a no-win situation regarding the disrespect. What she said in her email to my husband about me, "I hope she doesn't pull this shit with (my biodaughter) because moms just don't act like that" I am positive is a direct quote from HER mother (BM). And since she lives there and hears this kind of talk every day I can't fight it. If I discipline her at our house she will only hate me for it and use it for more empathy from BM. This wasn't the way I wanted it which is why I have felt like a doormat for 4 years, but with her sending that email is the first time she's really revealed how she feels about me and it makes it easier for me to make my decision. Since the relationship was fake to begin with (I know now that when she pretended to like me it was only when no one else was available to hang out with or she needed something), then hey, I may as well live up to the reputation she and her mom have created for me, and I intend to lay the law down, not necessarily in spoken words but in the bedroom move, in the locking of doors, and in the removal of all but basic necessities from the guest bathroom.

I guess that is all I can do. I have read SO many stories of SM's on this board who feel so utterly helpless in their situation and I refuse to be that way. Luckily I have a DH who loves me and although he protests vehemently there is no way he would ever divorce me regardless WHAT I do, so I do feel I have some leverage there.

I am not sure if any step parents on here have thought of any other little tips or tricks that they've employed to gain a little of their self-respect back and have some amount of control of the situation or in getting a little small, passive but sweet revenge (ie what goes around comes around) to exes who have just been downright NASTY to them but I'd be interested to hear your fun stories too. Smile

Thanks for all the advice.

Sus's picture

Steve that could be....never thought of it that way.
hmmm, interesting..

I was just thinking of my daughters. (3) From what I recall (they're now all in 30's) None of them took my belongings, if something were needed they always asked. I guess that's why I'm not use to people taking things.
My Grand children believe everything I own is theirs. I never seen kids do things like this. I guess a lot of it, is the way they are raised. ( i will be the first to admit My oldest Daughter is a terrible mother, when it comes to discipline ) And teaching her children right from wrong. If anything they feel we owe them.
I am ashamed of their behavior, especialy since my husband died.
I did notice, all of them trying to Boss me around LOL FAT chance.
They have a BIG shock coming to them ( the older grands) I stick to what I say, and nothing they will do or say now, will change the way I feel.
I am one of 11 siblings. I know how to handle spoiled brats very well.LOLOLOL

And especially My Grandsons, Girl friend,The nerve. That really angered me.
I am also missing a Hair blower. Before I left for TX I hunted high & low. I always bring that with me, and have a special place were i keep it in the Bath rm in FL. Last I recall was placing it back in that drawer when I unpacked my suitcase. I searched and searched. Then of course I had o buy a new one,..when it couldn't be located another 50.00..when I left to come back to TX in Dec. That angers me, that I have to replace items I already own.
I had all the locks changed to my house too. Just encase , a grand or someone made a copy. And now have a alarm system co. Taking care of it..LOL.

I am also a cosmetic hogg...product junkie too. and buy a lot when it's on sale. And like trying New things. And the prices on them are outragous now. Nail polic use to be like $1.00 now 6.00 each LOL
Lipsticks 5.00 now 20.00+ each...So they stuff adds up quickly.

As for the extra shampoo's, creams etc. Just pack them up and give them to her as needed. I would just get a Notebook/binder/ for inventory and keep track of everything you put in her bathroom.
I don't know what it is about Teens now...But they have NO sense of guilt, or feeling bad for anything they do.
I couldn't imagine, raising children these days. Mine were just so different...And I am thankful they were LOL.

Sarah101's picture

SD is playing power games with her father and you. And it seems she has the upper hand. Right now she is employing the "withholding my presence" strategy. This is common. Dhs fall for this strategy all the time.

In your home, she is playing the "I can take whatever the hell I want because it's MY HOUSE" strategy. The more she gets away with it, the more you reinforce that indeed, SD16 sets the rules in your home.

SD is also playing the "Daddy values me more than Stepmom" strategy by sending an email that places the blame for her bad behaviors on you. If DH treats that email as fact, SD16 knows that she is in control.

It seems that you and DH are in a great position right now to recalibrate the parent-child relationship to where it should be.

For the "withholding my presence" strategy, you need to take the long-term view. All of you will be here years from now, and SD is thinking short-term. A nice reply from DH such as, "That's too bad, honey. We all love you so much and want to see you. But we can wait until you are ready to visit us again. Soon we'll be doing (insert a fun thing here), and we really hope you will join us. " Put the decision right back in SD16's lap. She'll show up again--may be a few weeks or months--but she'll show up.

As for the stealing, have the nice, rational discussion AFTER you lock up your posessions. Yes, locking up tampons seems silly, but she'll get the point very quickly. And she'll have to ask you for things, which places the power dynamic where it should be. I did this in my house, and not only did I keep jewelry that would have been stolen, my SD got the message that the control over my posessions (and over me) was not hers anymore.

As for "Daddy values me more than Stepmom" strategy, DH needs to call out SD on her disrespect toward you. If he doesn't then he is giving her permission to continue disrespecting you--handing over the power to his daughter.

And to further set the parent-child relationship in line, you should switch SD16 and BD's rooms before her next visit. Nothing communicates "this is MY house, not yours" better than having your space changed by someone else. Ask anyone in the military. Your BD will need that space eventually, and it shouldn't be held as a shrine for a twice-a-month visit by a teenager.

Hope this helps. I've been where you are.

desperately seeking for answers's picture

I certainly think you should change your baby's room to the bigger room as long as you organize her small room to a welcoming environment i dont see nothing wrong with it. like you said she doesn't live there and doesnt plan on coming there any time soon. She's just playing the control roll with her dad.I suggest that you sit your husband down and tell him exactly how you feel and you should both go out out and buy extra make up or simple things like tampons and put it in the bathroom so she wont have to go through ur stuff, no ur personal stuff is a no no I dont even let my biological daughter go through my stuff, she has her own and is responsible for what she has. Then when she comes again or if you husband can call her and ask her to sit with both of you and discuss the matter and let her know that now she has her own and that she is not to touch your stuff and that she is responsible for keeping it there. If that doesnt change the matter then do what one of the other ladies suggested lock all your stuff up even your bedroom when she's there. Unfortunately my bf son steals all the time everything in this house disappears like magic and I mean big time including money, I had to with no doubt lock everything up is too bad that I dont feel safe in my own house but better safe then sorry, I even lock my bedroom door when I go use the bathroom that's how bad it is and he is only 9 and permanently lives here with us also everytime something disappear I make my bf replace so he can see how it feels spending money to replace it and maybe he will start thinking more about how you feel.....

Good luck let us know how it goes

Last-Wife's picture

I don't get SDs and why they pull this. I know I never did it to my own mother. If I wanted something, I asked.

My SD "borrows" my stuff all the time. The worst was when she "borrowed" new shoes I bought only 3 days before and wore them to a garden party, after a rain. The heels stuck in the mud and were ruined. They were leather and molded to the shape of her feet. I hadn't even had the chance to wear them. I made her pay me back.

Little things always end up missing around here, and even my stepsons do it too. Zit cream, shampoo, razors, bath soap. All of it stuff I would buy if they told me they were out. I have two steamer size trunks in our room with stuff I really worry about, and keep them locked.

I leave money inside my top dresser drawer. It's gone EVERY TIME. (I have another secret hiding place the kids' haven't found yet.) My DH is like, are you sure you left it there? No one would be in your stuff. Well, hell, I've seen SD come in and riffle through my things while I'm sitting right there!!!
"I HAD to pick the road less traveled..."

OregonMom's picture

Yes, borrowing a pair of my shoes and getting them all muddy is something my SD has done too. She simply doesn't respect my stuff and she has led a life of privilege while her brother (my SS) has not. She is in all-star cheerleading and although her BM can't afford it she still puts it on credit card every year, its over $5K a year, and at least 5 trips to exotic locations like Orlando, LA, Las Vegas (we're in rainy Oregon so at least they are exotic to us lol) she gets to miss at least 10 days of school every year, and these competitions are televised so she gets to brag she's on ESPN.

She basically just has way too high opinion of herself (though deep inside I really wonder how she feels) and combined with her BM HATING me for encouraging BD to stand up to her and not take her manipulative crap anymore, she has developed complete disrespect. THis was under control until hormones started kicking in and for some reason when she started driving it just got 100x worse, like she felt entitled to the whole world now, her attitude really changed.

Sarah I really liked the labels of games you put on it you are right she is playing three different games right now and each needs to be addressed, unfortunately the "disrespecting SM game" has to be dealt with by my husband and i'm not sure he has the guts to do it. He hates confrontation. But I at least can address the other two issues myself and at this point don't really care whether he gets mad. I think he is being unreasonable with ideas he grew up with that his parents taught him (such as the oldest kid should always get the biggest bedroom (just because they're oldest???). So I'll be fixing that soon.

My guess is she will have two reactions, 1, she will make a HUGE deal out of everything: "is it ok to use this toilet paper?" said in a super sweet voice, or 2, she will treat it like a challenge and decide to see what she can get away with (ie "to hell with you I'll do it just to prove you aren't in control"). Or maybe both. If I discover she is continuing to take things as a power trip, I don't care if its one roll of toilet paper, then I am going to start searching her bags and if I have to she will also be emptying her pockets before she walks out the door Monday mornings.

I'm sad that I can't break the attitude problem, nor the lying, after treating her dad horribly and not coming down and trying to place all blame for this on me, I emailed her to let her know he would really love to see her at his 40th birthday party which is this afternoon, and she texted him (not me) to say she was sorry she couldn't come but she had cheer at the same time. The cheer gym emailed out the calendar for the month and she was lying, she didn't have it until 2 hours after the party started so she could at least have stopped by. Its just lies lies lies, she feels no remorse for them whatsoever.

I am of the opinion that these type of people turn out in one of two ways. Either they continue for the rest of their lives, or something happens which is so traumatic (ie they lie to a police officer, steal from teh wrong person, end up in jail, etc) that finally causes them to realize what they are doing is destructive and unacceptable to society. I just wish I could get through to SD that when she is an adult if she steals from the wrong person she will end up in the hospital or in jail, but due to BM's strong influence and brainwashing that I'm a horrible person, its safe to say she won't listen to a word I have to say. And DH doesn't have the common sense or balls to say it either (he has a brain injury which causes him to think some of the weirdest things that is the opposite of "common sense" for most of us).

Thanks for all the advice! I'm starting to at least be able to form a strategy.

Incidentally my SS, because he is treated unfairly (almost like Cinderella, I kid you not) at his BM's house (he even told her while at our house once, on the phone, that she treated him differently than his sister), he is turning out great. Very responsible and conscientious kid. Love it! So there is hope for at least one of them.

OregonMom's picture

To tired-stepmom...

I do feel sorry for what you are going through and can understand why you would pick the screen name! I get so tired sometimes too.

I also never would have taken anything...I lived in a different household with abusive mother and I knew if I took (or even she suspected I took) something I would get beat!

Obviously that is not healthy but at the opposite end kids today feel SO entitled. It is the age of electronics, of parents going totally bonkers trying to provide for kids "the things they never had' so they end up with iPods, cell phones, designer bedrooms, even laptops!! What does this serve to accomplish? Since they are kids, immature, and don't know what it feels like to work for something they just come to feel they deserve it.

We tried a different tactic with my SD this Christmas and spent twice on my SS what we did on my SD. He gets nothing and she gets everything so we wanted to give him somethng special and prove a point to her. In Sept, we gave her a $500 limo ride and dinner out with her friends for her 16th birthday and her appreciation lasted all of a day...by two weeks later she was screaming at her dad "I don't know why I even bother coming down here!" when he asked her to drive herself somewhere rather than him chaffeuring her.

If you SEE your SD riffling through your stuff why don't you say "what in the hell do you think you're doing?" Its so hard to confront, I know, but after that first confrontation it will get easier, trust me. Before I said something to my SD my heart was pounding hands sweating even had a stress headache. And I ended up being very polite and calm, even DH said he was surprised how calmly I handled it. And even THAT received the backlash that it did from her. However now that the ice has been broken, it will be easier for me to say something in the future. Its that first standing up for yourself that is so hard and will receive the most resistance simply becuase they are used to getting away wtih whatever while you keep your mouth shut, and they aren't likely to appreciate the change. No one appreciates losing power even when it is well deserved.

Good luck!

Sarah101's picture

Cool! You sound hopeful!

You wrote: the "disrespecting SM game" has to be dealt with by my husband and i'm not sure he has the guts to do it. He hates confrontation."

I walked in your ruined, leather shoes on this one :-). There doesn't need to be confrontation between SD16 and DH when she disrespects you. Sounds like she only has guts in email and text form, anyhow, not in person. All you DH has to say to her when the verbal spew toward you begins is,"I realize that you have issues with OregonMom, but I cannot discuss your issues until you speak in a more mature way about the situation. Can you please repeat your point in a way that makes more sense to me?"

If SD16 cannot stop the spew, then DH should say, "It seems that this issue is an emotional one for you. When you are ready to be more rational and less insulting about OregonMom, I will be here to listen. " And then DH STOPS THE CONVERSATION.

No drama needed. No confrontation. No raised voices. Just your DH being sensitive to the situation and challenging his daughter to deal with her emotions in a more mature way. What father wouldn't want to teach that to his daughter?

I made my DH practice the conversation with me because he was fearful of his daughters, too. His adult daughters still hate me, but their hateful emails, texts, and conversations with DH have stopped since they found that he just won't go there with them anymore.

Hope this helps. You should never, ever place yourself in a position where you are disrespected in your own home. It's damaging for you, and also damaging for your other children to watch it. You probably cannot change SD16, but you can (CAN!) control what you will accept in your own home.

OregonMom's picture

Thanks again Sarah, you have great advice, and oh yeah, I like your avatar. Smile

I am curious to know, do your adult SD's hate you because of their BM's influence? Did you go through a similar situation of trying to get along with BM but finding it impossible due to her jealousy, irrationality, need for control, etc?

Sarah101's picture

Nothing to do with BM, really. I never had any issues with her personally. Oh, I know she talked smack about me regularly, but I never really cared. She is a lightweight and not worth my time.

My issues were with DHs 5 children (teens then, now adults) who ganged together in an effort to disrespect me and ruin my marriage. When they moved into our home, they immediately tried to take over. They had lived with DH for a few years before he married me, and they were used to running his house. One daughter, in particular, was the self-appointed "wife," and she really resented not being in charge when we got married. She felt like the ex-wife and acted just like one too.

So I tried for years to get along with daughter-ex-wife and the rest of them until it got so bad that I had to disengage to preserve what was left of my dignity. Soon after that, I got so fed up with their disgusting habits and behaviors that I told DH to kick them out or I'd leave (they were adults by then). To my surprise, he actually kicked them out after repeated warnings about their drug use, drinking all of our alcohol, tantrums, constant stealing from us, etc.

I've given up on trying to change their minds about me. Talk about a complete waste of my time! Their BM taught them how to be haters, and hate is what they do. I am an easy target for their hate--its laughable what they try to blame on me. Of course DH wears rose-colored glasses and hopes for the day that we will "all get along, " but I doubt that day will come any time soon. Life is too short to spend my time trying to fix these people.

OregonMom's picture

Thank you for sharing your story. I am so glad I ran across this board I am learning so much! When I met DH his daughter was 12 but she already acted like a bossy "mommy" esp to her younger brother. There were some weird instances when she was 12 and 13 where she would sit in daddy's lap and grind her butt into his crotch that freaked me out and i told him that it wasn't right. He said he hadn't really noticed but looking back that yes, she could have done it on purpose, not really knowing what she's doing but that's how her mommy gets guys attention and with the new female in dad's house maybe she was feeling a bit (or a lot) threatened. She's always been an alpha female type. Unfortunately...so have I!

I'm inspired by the way you handled your situation and have hope for mine now too. Smile Thanks!