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Old 06-05-2006, 09:30 AM   #1
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sister needs advice

My sister asked me for advice not because I am officially a parent yet but because I am usually good at reading my niece. The problem is that when my sister and her husband divorced, he met a women who has no chldren and wants to be the center of attention, like she is with her dad. Her an my niece butted heads, because my niece too was a Daddy's girl. My Ex-Brother-in-law tried to split his attention with both of them but no matter how much attention he gave his girlfriend when my niece was around, she wasn't happy. When my niece wasn't around my Brother-in-law would complain to my sister, that his girlfriend acted like she wanted nothing to do with him. My Brother-in-law still informs my sister about his problems with his now wife. So it is too the point where my niece feels neglected by her Father and has been hurt a few times and no longer wants to see him. My sister told her to be nice to her Step-Mother and her Step-Mother was told the same by her husband. My sister really doesn't want to see my niece lose contact with her dad but she wants to respect her wishes, especially when she sees how hard she takes things. She asked me if she should make her go or not go or what? She doesn't want to force her but she thinks that my niece might be overracting a little, because after all she has been use to be spoiled by her dad. However even if that is part of the reason for her dismay, many friends and family have noticed the problems and mentioned them to my sister, which seems to back up my niece's story. What would you as a parent do?

 
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Old 06-06-2006, 02:59 PM   #2
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Re: sister needs advice

I am a divorced (really remarried) mother of 2 and my ex has been married to 2 other women since me. It has been really hard on my daughters especially my youngest who is 9 now because she is a daddy's girl. IMHO, I have always let my ex make that decision. We are able to talk to each other pretty openly so I tell him how my daughter feels about not wanting to be around her step-mom and so not wanting to see him. Then I ask him what he wants me to do.. I will make her if he instists but I will also explain to her that it is his choice and I have to according to the law. He has always told me to let my daughter do what she wants, but to tell her that he really wants to see her or he calls her and tells her how much he would love to see her or how much he misses her. I can't make her like going and I can't make the relationship between them work, so I put it all right back on him. I am sure that your sister could do something very similar. Make him decide.. It is his decision to make and if she has a standard custody agreement it says that if she keeps her daughter from seeing her dad against his will she is in contempt of court the whole "I have to according to the law" is not a lie.
This would also depend on how old the child is. The older she gets the less i press the issue of making her go to his house (although he is getting divorce again so she loves going to his house right now.. no step-mom )
I hope this helps a little. If I were your sister I would try my hardest to make it his decision not my own.
Good Luck it is a sticky situation.

 
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