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Old 07-08-2010, 08:03 AM   #1
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Help with my stepdaughter

Maybe someone can help. My stepdaughter moved in with me and my husband a month ago. She is 25. We have been married for a year. I did not know that she was BPD ( neither did she). No that she's been diagnosed, her mom can not deal with her any more. I agreed that she can stay for +-3 months, get a job and place to stay, close to us. She got a job 1 week later, but of the 3 working weeks, she has been offsick 3x. The last time for a week with laryngitis. She used to practice a "laryngitis" voice in the past to avoid being forced to go to work.

I told her that her voice should rest, therefore she can not have a visit from the boyfriend this weekend. Now I see a miraculous recovery comming. What do I do now, if you set boundries, you need to stick to them. But I know that she lied to me. And what do I do if she loses this job? Will she now live with us forever?

 
Old 07-09-2010, 12:34 AM   #2
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Re: Help with my stepdaughter

I don't want my post to come off in a negative way,so please don't think that.I'm only trying to help.
My opinion is,your stepdaughter doesn't need this much active parenting from you.Bipolar or not,age 25 is pretty old.
Yes she should have to follow your rules while in your house,but being told she can't see her boyfriend at that age?
Come on,a lot of people are already married at that age.
It is not like she is 13.

Also,if her work has not fired her,then it really shouldn't be your concern if she is missing days or not.
Having bipolar is hard under the best circumstances, and yes it is hard to keep a job when you have it.
It really is an illness.
Has your step daughter gotten any help for her illness and is she on any meds?

 
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Old 07-09-2010, 02:19 AM   #3
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Re: Help with my stepdaughter

There does need to be some guidelines set up between your husband, you and your step daughter. I would hope your husband takes a very big role in establishing and enforcing the rules, and not leaving you to handle her. After all, she is his daughter, and you should be spared of a 25 year old running loose in your house.

If she has been diagnosed, she must be responsible for managing her illness. There has never been more understanding and treatment available than now, and it is up to her to keep all appointments, and take medication daily. That should be rule number one. Without treatment, she could be very difficult to live with. She is old enough to learn to live with her BP, since it will likely be something she will have to do her entire life.

If she cannot keep a job, there should be a consequence. There should be no tolerance for faking sick, or missing work without a doctors note. Another part of growing up that cant be skipped. All this will be good for her in the long run, and for your marriage too.

Do not let this young woman think she can control you in your home. Put your foot down hard, and early.

What is your husbands relationship with his daughter like? And the ex wife? It might take all of you to get the girl on the right track, so keeping on good terms with the mother would be very helpful. Perhaps you can switch her off until she gets going on her own in a healthy way. Let her know that she has to pull her weight, and make positive steps to stay in your home.

Tough love, it works if consistant.

All the best to you

Last edited by writeleft; 07-09-2010 at 02:20 AM.

 
Old 07-12-2010, 01:22 AM   #4
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Re: Help with my stepdaughter

Thanks When it Rains, I understand that it seems unfair to not let her see the Boyfriend, however, the cure was miraculous and she was able to work on Friday. Yes, some people are married at 25, but then, most people work for a living at that age as well... I have not explained a lot, but the reason I want her to work, is so that she will be able to live and exist on her own. I do not want to share my house with her indefinitely. I have agreed to take her in to help, and that is what I am trying to do.

I am trying not to do the "parenting " thing. I have seen a Psycologist, her Dad as well, and this morning she has gone. She is on meds ( has been for many years ) but she has Borderline personality disorder and according to what I've read, thats different to Bipolar?

I have just read that you have to set borders and create structure and to never make a promise that you can not keep. I feel a little in the deep end, as I have never dealt with mental illness before. I was and still am so scared that I will do something wrong. But I will not stand for manipulation...And, I feel that I owe it to my hiusband to keep our lives and marriage healthy and strong. To do that, I can not just keep quiet and let things slip. I will end up bottling everything, and that will be counter productive.

But thank you for the input.

 
Old 07-12-2010, 01:41 AM   #5
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Re: Help with my stepdaughter

Thank you Writeleft. As I've said, I dread doing something wrong. I'm strong when need be, but I live for harmony and for the 3.5 years my husband and I were together, we had mostly that. My husband has always been a "distant" father ( as per his daughter and ex-wife). I get along with his ex-wife, but I think that she may also have BPD. We have gone for coffee and discussed it, and she does agree.

I also have to say, from when my stepdaughter has moved in, as far as I know, she has not run down any of my decisions. What I do feel, is guilty about the anger I feel, every so often, for being forced to deal with this issue now. I have two boys that I raised on my own. We have a wonderful relationship. However, they know - to live, you need to eat, to eat, you need to work. If she loses this job, it means that she will just stay that much longer. I am now setting short term goals, but the ultimate is that she has to find a place of her own.

I have been with my company 20 years, and could go years without sick leave. The whole concept of playing sick to NOT go to work, is totally foreign to me. Reading your reply, made me feel a lot better. This will not be easy, but I am so sure that it's possible that one day, she will have a life of her own, come and visit and be our functioning child out in the big world.

 
Old 07-12-2010, 04:05 AM   #6
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Re: Help with my stepdaughter

I'm sorry Second mom I thought BPD was short for Bipolar disorder.Yes,Borderline Personality disorder is different.

I do agree with wrightleft...it would be better if your husband was the one laying down the rules with her.It's unfair that you should even have to.And I know how you feel because I'am a stepmom too,and there is no way I'd want my grown step kids living with me on a permanent basis either.
You should not have to feel guilty for how you are feeling,and your husband should be the one doing the enforcing.You said you guys were in therapy,don't they agree with that?

I had some troubles in the past with one of my step daughters because my husband was not the one doing the enforcing either.It really put a strain on our marriage too.
The step child may even begin to resent you because of it too.
I see where you are coming from with the job,but I know a lot of people (adults) who call out often or use sick days as a "fun" day.I'm not one of those people,but all jobs are different.
I really hope things work out for you.Hang in there.

 
Old 07-13-2010, 03:07 AM   #7
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Re: Help with my stepdaughter

I too misunderstood BPD to mean Bipolar disorder...so many terms to keep straight. To familiarize myself with Borderline Personality Disorder, I found a list of symptoms:

Borderline Personality Disorder - Symptoms

A person with borderline personality disorder often has unstable relationships, low self-esteem, and problems with impulsive behavior, all of which begin by early adulthood.

A common feature of this disorder is fear of being left alone (abandoned), even if the threat of being abandoned is not real. This fear may lead to frantic attempts to hold on to those around you and may cause you to become too dependent on others. Sometimes you may react to the fear of being abandoned by rejecting others first before they can reject you. This erratic behavior can lead to troubled relationships in every area of your life.

People who are diagnosed with borderline personality disorder have at least five of the following symptoms. They may:1

* Make frantic efforts to avoid real or imagined abandonment.
* Have a pattern of difficult relationships caused by alternating between extremes of intense admiration and hatred of others.
* Have an unstable self-image or be unsure of his or her own identity.
* Act impulsively in ways that are self-damaging, such as extravagant spending, frequent and unprotected sex with many partners, substance abuse, binge eating, or reckless driving.
* Have recurring suicidal thoughts, make repeated suicide attempts, or cause self-injury through mutilation, such as cutting or burning himself or herself.
* Have frequent emotional overreactions or intense mood swings, including feeling depressed, irritable, or anxious. These mood swings usually only last a few hours at a time. In rare cases, they may last a day or two.
* Have long-term feelings of emptiness.
* Have inappropriate, fierce anger or problems controlling anger. The person may often display temper tantrums or get into physical fights.
* Have temporary episodes of feeling suspicious of others without reason (paranoia) or losing a sense of reality.

Not everyone who has five or more of these symptoms is diagnosed with borderline personality disorder. For a person to be diagnosed with any personality disorder, the symptoms must be severe and must go on long enough to cause significant emotional distress or problems functioning in relationships or at work.1

You may have temporary episodes of psychosis (paranoia and a loss of a sense of reality) with borderline personality disorder, especially when you are going through a personal crisis. This psychosis usually does not last very long. But if it continues, your doctor may consider another condition, such as schizophrenia.

Symptoms of borderline personality disorder are not caused by another medical condition or by medicines. And they are not a result of long-term substance abuse problems. Borderline personality disorder may be confused with other conditions with similar symptoms, such as other personality disorders, including antisocial personality disorder and histrionic personality disorder.

 
Old 07-30-2010, 09:07 AM   #8
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Re: Help with my stepdaughter

Hi Guys, now I realy need help. Things are going way south. Since my Stepdaughter moved in things started going rocky. I managed to get a routine set and she has actually been fine now.

The problem is that this is putting serious stress on my marriage. My husband started lying to me and finding reasons why he should not be at home. My SD works as a waiter but have no means of transport. We take turns at fetching her around 23h00 at night.

I do not understand why he is doing this to me. He found a job for one of his old girlfriends at the co where he works, but did not tell me about it. When I found out, he was lying in every direction. What am I to do? I do not want to lose him and wonder if his daugter staying there has changed him. He did not want her to come and live here but we had no choice.

Do I have to send her away to save my marriage? This is what I was scared of from the start.

 
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