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Why does it have to be so hard?

stepper47's picture

Just a little holiday venting.  SD16 came over on Thanksgiving, even brought her boyfriend, and we had a really nice time.   DH saw her once since then, when he went with her to her orthodontist app a couple weeks ago. SD had worn braces for 3 years, and they were ready to come off, however, the ortho told her he needed to use filler to fill in some spaces that would still exist.  She was freaking out about this, she did not want the filler.  5 days before her appointment, she started calling and texting DH, saying the ortho was a quack (she used more colorful terms) and she wanted to go somewhere different.  She was being pretty mean about it, like this was DH's fault.  DH hadn't really been involved in the braces, other than paying for them. BM initiated them and then told DH after the fact, so he just left it to her.  He did not know about the filler or even that she was getting her braces off, until she started harassing him about it.  He wanted to help bc he loves her, so he tried to get in touch with the ortho to talk about what the plan was.  They were never able to connect (which made SD madder,),so DH ended up going to the appt with her.  Evidently she has been going to appointments by herself.  The ortho explained the filler is due to the size of some of her teeth. Even though they are now where they should be, there was still space in a couple places because those teeth were not big enough to fill it.   Ironically, after she started harassing DH, I looked up using filler after braces and found this as a reason, but nobody listens to me :)   Anyway, after the ortho explained it she said she was fine with it, braces came off, filler added, and she was happy with her perfect smile.  All was right with the world...

We are trying to figure out our Christmas plans.  Supposedly this is supposed to be DH's Christmas Eve, as part of the currently non existent custody schedule.  He tried to call and also texted SD a couple times last week to talk about it, with no response.  I happened to run into her at a store yesterday, she actually got my attention to say hi, which surprised me.  I said I hoped we would see her next week, and she said she was waiting to hear our plans.  I didn't know DH had reached out to her, so I told her the couple things I did know regarding when we were seeing her grandma, and she said "oh, see, I didn't even know that, thanks".  I came home and asked DH why he hadn't told her and he pulled out his phone and showed me his texts that hadn't been responded to.  He was pretty annoyed.  I told him to just text her what our plans were, invite her to stay over Christmas Eve, and have bfast and do our gifts Christmas morning.  That way it's out there and she can't say he never told her.  He did that....and her response a couple hours later was....."the dentist's office said they tried to call you twice to tell you my retainer is ready, but you didn't answer and now my teeth are growing apart" with a picture (they really are separating, wow), and some harrassment about that.   He has no missed calls from the dentist's number and no messages.  But besides that, she did not respond about Christmas plans.

Today he said she texted to ask what to  get my son and myself.  That started my warm fuzzy feeling again....awww, see she does care!  So nice!.  He told her a couple little things as ideas.  A little bit later, she called him while we were in the car, his bluetooth was connected so she was on speaker.  She asked if we had a dog bed for our dog.  He said no, but we didn't need one bc our dog sleeps with us.  She said, well, I am short on cash right now so I am going to get a dog bed as yours and Carrie's gift.  He said no, really we don't need or want a dog bed, and she said, well too bad, that's what you are getting, bye!

So....she still hasn't bothered to comment on Christmas plans, and now apparently I am getting a dog bed for Christmas.  I am really trying to warm up and I want things to get better, but it's really hard to want to have a relationship with someone who seems to have little thought or regard for your feelings.  And just to clarify, it's not about "gifts". If she had shown up with a dog bed, I would have been ok with it, bc she knows we love our dog and probably thought it was a good idea.  But now if that's what she brings, I can't pretend that, I know she just doesn't care and she was probably standing in front of cheap dog beds when she called.    I don't expect anything in the first place and I would much rather that than receive something I said I didn't want.  Assuming she even comes around for Christmas.  Ugh.  What makes it sting a little more for DH is that SS had told us he and SD were going shopping for BM and her boyfriend last weekend, and he also said SD bought him a copper frying pan for Christmas.  So it would appear she is putting effort into everyone but DH (and me, but that's expected) which is crappy.

I can't figure out if she wants to be a part of us or not, it seems every time I start thinking maybee she does, something happens to make me think she just wants to keep us in our place.  I don't know why this relationship is so difficult. I wish things were different but I am not sure how to get there.

Just needed to get this out, I do find it helps when I release this stuff, and with holiday stress, I need all the help I can get!

Harry's picture

SD is putting no effort into your feelings.  As I found this pice of junk. It's was the first thing in the doorway of the store. Your Christmas shopping is complete.  You must understand this is the way she is.  And you must treat her the same.  Go to a store find the first cheep thing that five feet in and that her Christmas gift 

lieutenant_dad's picture

My guess is that the relationship is difficult because it's one way, and that's SD's way. She'll be involved so long as it's on her terms. Whether this is because she is a selfish teenager who can't see past her own nose or is a major part of her personality, I don't know.

BM has pulled the same "I didn't get your texts"  BS before. I highly suspect that she gets them, but she wants to see how other things shake out first. Your SD is likely the same - DH and your family is the contingency, because when she NEEDS something, her communication is frequent and easy-flowing.

I wouldn't get too invested. If she shows up, great! If not, oh well! Be as non-commital as she is and you won't be disappointed.

Gracefulsilver's picture

Geesh, your way ahead of me.  His selfish brat didn't give a gift for any reason.  Not even a piece of paper with "Happy Birthday" or "Merry Christmas" written on it.  So , I figured why spend money on the brat.  She has no clue what quality means due to her welfare bum of a BM.  So I got her the cheapest gift I could that did not look like an insult.  Problem is, now that heer dad and I are not together I have her gift sitting in my house because I ordered it in advance.  I guess I'll just donate it to good will or the salvation army.  Actually I prefered it this way because I really did not want the junk she would have found anyway.

Rags's picture

Warming things up with someone who has not earned it by demonstrating respectful and caring behaviors is a waste of time and does no one any good.

If she were my Skid, this kid would get about a milisecond of give a shit from me and if she ever spoke to me or my SO the way she attacked your DH over the retainer her teeth would make Snaggle Tooth's teeth look perfect.  She can figure out how to get her owned damned retainer.


The problem with kids like this is their parents.  Parents that tolerate this kind of manipulative, toxic, disrespectful crap.  Draw the line, give her the message that her crap will no longer be tolerated, and bring the pain.

It works in two ways. It applies consequences for her crappy behavior and it gets her out of your head.

Merry hopefully Skid free Christmas.

notsurehowtodeal's picture

Check for a real name in your post.

What a self-centered young woman - I wonder why all of a sudden she is holding DH responsible for all her orthodonist needs?

I am sure a dog at your local shelter will appreciate the dog bed!

RisingtheWave80's picture

Curious as to how your Christmas went? Did she show up on Christmas Eve? It's all so hard. I read a meme on Instagram this morning that spoke to me "No Stepmother is doing it because it's easy, only because it's worth it" and these hard times, expecially in the holiday season really push that thought. 

We had SD over Christmas Eve, she bought us a gift! Which was not expected and she has since thanked me again for the few things I had picked for her. I don't know who this kid is but I will take what I can get that is positive