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  • Step Father vs. Daughter GRRRR!!!

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    Old 02-05-2003, 10:29 AM   #1
    MelNor
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    Post Step Father vs. Daughter GRRRR!!!

    Looking for some outside opinions and ideas from others!

    I have been married for 3 years and together for 5. I have a 10 year old daughter who he has pretty much played the father role for the whole 5 years. He has been great about financial issues as her real father has not paid a cent for her. He has never complained about helping me with the financial responsibilities of her.

    The problem we have is his additude towards her. He is not physically abusive but it seems he is constantly nagging her. The thing is, the things he nags about are "usually" legitamate things, like clean up your room, pick up your coat, clean off your plate and put it in the dishwasher, etc, etc, typical things with any 10 year old, the bothersome thing is the tone he uses with her. It sounds like he thinks he is her military leader or something. And, it is constant, 90% of what he says to her is ordering her around and it is really getting to me. It makes me and her feel terrible, therefore I try not to be so dominant with her and then he accuses me of "letting her off with everything", it feels like a no win situation.

    Everytime I try to talk to her about something I would like her to do he immediately jumps in and starts ragging on her, I feel so underminded and sorry for her. She is a good kid, she does awesome at school, she is very respectful to everyone and has a huge heart. She consideres him as her father and makes him father's day cards, etc.

    But...Lately I have noticed she is beginning to back talk him when he starts his military routine and then it turns into a huge battle. I guess she is getting tired of it and also getting to that mouthy age a bit as well. It is getting so bad that we can not even sit down to eat dinner without the war starting. It usually begins with him waiting for her to do any little tiny thing he might consider not appropriate table manners, then the "use your fork for your bacon", "your making pig noises" (which she doesn't) Then old hell breaks loose and he usually leaves the table and storms upstairs and she sits there crying!! OMG it is insane!!!!!!!

    I don't understand why he has to be like this, maybe it is a difference in upbringing or something but in my mind it does not excuse his actions.

    I have spoken to him about this more times than I can count and either he freaks out and says he doesn't do that or he admits it and says he will stop. Needless to say he hasn't. I am torn up about this and don't know what else do. I feel I have no say or control over my own child!!

    Please advise...I need it!!

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    [This message has been edited by MelNor (edited 02-05-2003).]
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    Old 02-05-2003, 10:53 AM   #2
    badgirl
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    Melnor, was your husband ever in the military? Is he a perfectionist? More information before I can give more advice. Thanks, Badgirl

     
    Old 02-05-2003, 11:19 AM   #3
    MelNor
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    Yes he was in the military years ago but only for a couple years. He was not a big guy or anything, just a private. By no means is he a perfectionist himself...it seems he only wants her to be.

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    Remember that a lone amateur built the Ark.
    A large group of professionals built the Titanic.
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    Old 02-05-2003, 11:41 AM   #4
    Pugbear
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    Hi there

    reading your post was like reading what i have been through. Only i am the daughter.

    I'm 20 now...and my step dad has been in my life since i was around 8. It was just exactly the same..

    Sometimes he was fine, and he'd be quite nice really. Especially financially as my real father could not really afford much.

    He would just nag and nag and nag...99% of the time. You seem very much like my mum. Both me and my younger sister were so greatful of the fact that he worked away during the week..but would dread the weekends.

    We always felt like our mum was on our side when she was with us..but when he started on, she didn't want to stick up for us so much.

    Anyway, now...i'll be honest i dont like him, and i would say as a result of the way he treated me through my teenage years. I would always talk back, be brave and refuse..but my sister was quiet, but i knew she was hurting just as bad because we really did want him to 'like' us.

    It was even worse when my little brother was born, step brother but u know..i loved him to bits. But it was like my mum, him and little bro had their own family going on. More often than not, me and my sister would sit in one room and them in another.

    We felt guilty about doing anything in our house because he always told us how HE paid for it..even felt guilty making a sandwhich.

    Anyway, i urge you to PLEASE try to resolve this..if it goes on into your daughters teenage years it will get soooo much worse. Just think if he gets annoyed with her for a tiny little thing...hows he gonna react when she wants to go to the movies with a friend or something? You see what i mean..

    I honestly feel like my step dad ruined my teenage years, and he was never physical, and sure i'd not have had nice things without him..BUT..when your a teenager and hes calling you fat and criticising everything you do..god damn it hurts like crazy. And the arguments in the family, i started to blame myself because he had such a big problem with me.

    Please dont let your daughter be put through this. She sounds like a wonderful child and i really hope she is strong if he is going to carry on like this.

    I feel for her and you so much because i can honestly relate to this.

    I have ended up having more respect for my real father, even though he gives me nothing financial and never has, hes given me love. Which accounts for alot when your going through the rollercoaster of being a teenager.

    I moved out to university in september, and i dont think i have even spoke to my step dad once. But i keep regular contact with mum and dad.

    Dont let your daughter be like this..because you'll lose out aswell. You should always be close.

    Hope this helped in some small way.

    Kind regards

    Sarah

     
    Old 02-05-2003, 04:16 PM   #5
    badgirl
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    Melnor, sometimes men in the military are so strict and if he is not a perfectionate, then he has a real problem. I couldn't stand this. Do you see any type of mental problems or underlying problems? Has he ever done you this way. It seems to me he is taking something, I don't not what, out on your daughter. I would go a little deeper with this problem. Maybe counseling, he has some frustrations of some kind. I wouldn't live like this and your daughter shouldn't have to either. She probably don't even understand why he is doing this and someone needs to explain it to her or she will be a basket case. Let us know, Badgirl

     
    Old 02-05-2003, 07:25 PM   #6
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    Hey Mel - Glad to see you back.

    Mel - Come on princess - - - - You're married to a drunk, right? Whadda ya expect?

    As long as he's drinking it's going to be this way.

    Please, do you and your daughter a favor.... stand up to him and protect her. If you don't then she may resent you for it later in life.

    Please see my sig line.

    Hang in there girl. Hit those Al-Anon meetings as you have time.
    Bruce

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    Those who dispense tough love to their children now should be prepared to receive same back from them in 30 years.

     
    Old 02-06-2003, 06:03 AM   #7
    MelNor
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    Hi Guys and thanks for the responses!! It is truely appreciated!!

    Pugbear...It was great to hear from you being in a similar situation. I can't imagine what you have gone through and I really don't blame you for not wanting to see your step-father anymore. In our situation, he has never once even made a noise about paying for everything. He does give her everything he can financially without so much as even giving it a second thought. My husband can not have children, (as terrible as this may sound) it may just be a blessing in disguise. In my opinion, I gave her life and it is my duty to protect her and your post just verifies my feelings of what the future outcome can be if he doesn't lighten up. I wish you the best and thanks!!

    Badgirl...he is a mental problem! haha Seriously though, this problem is another of many. We have tried the counselling thing and it didn't do much good. He was mad afterwards cause the things I said embarrased him...now he has a million excuses not to go. As for him resenting her for something...I sometimes wonder the same...I wonder if he hates her father so bad that it spills into his actions with her.

    Bruce...ya know you always make me smile! Well, you are right again as usual. Good news is that he is still going to AA and has a few months in clean. I try not to say it too loud cause soon as I let my guard down, he is back at it again. This is the first time he has gone to AA and seems to be doing ok with it so far. I don't know how to go on from here though...I feel every day is just going through the motions and it is nothing more than that anymore. As for standing up for her you can be sure that I will....and do.

    Gotta got to work guys...take care everyone!!

    Mel

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    Never be afraid to try something new.
    Remember that a lone amateur built the Ark.
    A large group of professionals built the Titanic.
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    A large group of professionals built the Titanic.

     
    Old 02-06-2003, 08:03 AM   #8
    Lady^
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    Can you tape audio tape him? I'd bet that if he heard how bad he sounds it would open his eyes.

     
    Old 02-06-2003, 09:49 AM   #9
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    Lady, that is a good idea. Sometimes people don't realize just how bad they sound until they hear it for themselves. What we hear and what others hear can be totally different.

     
    Old 02-06-2003, 10:31 AM   #10
    badgirl
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    That is a good idea Lady, but I would set boundaries in the home. I would not allow alcohol around my daughter or in the home. Tell him to go to a bar and drink all he wants, but don't do it in the home. If he is drinking he needs to stay clear of the little girl. Try to think of the innocent one here, you all are adults and she is just now learning and do you want this kind of life for your daughter or maybe in the future be an alcoholic (think about it Melnor). I have no experience with an alcoholic husband, but I know what is off limits and that is definitely alcohol. I have always heard living with an alcoholic is the worst life a person could possibly have. God bless your home, Badgirl

     
    Old 04-01-2003, 09:23 AM   #11
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    MelNor, amazingly enough I found this stream while searching about the same problem...but I am the step father and I fear that I am treating my 9 year old step daughter the same way. I find myself constantly nagging her about stuff...close your mouth while eating, pick up your shoes, write your homework neater, don't be so loud, don't ask stupid questions...and I have to tell you I feel horrible about it. Last night was a big blow up and she wrote her mom that she wants to live with her dad. Before I came into the picture that was the last thing she would have said. It seems she never smiles or plays...that she is always in trouble. Now, in defense of myself I should tellyou that 90% of why I fuss is because of her mouth. Either too much attitude in the tone or asking ridiculous questions without thinking. I have tried to talk to her repeatedly about it...that if she would only think about her tone and the questions her life would be much easier...but I don't know if she is simply not thinking or if I am expecting too much from a 9 year old. It kills me to think that I am ruining this childs child hood but I don't know how else to keep her respectful as well as let her be a child. Any recommendations would be appreciated.

     
    Old 04-01-2003, 12:39 PM   #12
    Kadree
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    Hi Mel!!!
    Sorry to hear there are still battles going on at home. So sorry I haven't been here for so long, I still have the same issues going on in my life.
    I know that your little girl is an angel, and you still know my opinion of what I think should happen at your house. The same thing that should be happening at mine.
    Hang in there Mel, and know that I am always here for you.
    I'll check in here tomorrow, and maybe I can get your old e mail address back.

    Love Kadree

     
    Old 04-02-2003, 08:53 PM   #13
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    Peaux, speaking as someone who's been in the situation of the nine year old since I was tiny and still am (and I'm 19!) try to take her with a grain of salt.

    Kids don't think about how much attitude they have in their tone. If you're even and calm with them, and it doesn't turn into a war -- (you're the adult, you have the maturity and the wisdom and the years and the experience to choose to not get angry -- she's still learning who she is!) -- it doesn't give them an excuse to put on an attitude. And if you ask them evenly, and gently, "Do you realize how you sound? It sounds like you're trying to be recalcitrant, even if you're not. You might find others are more receptive if you're less demanding of tone."

    I emphasize, GENTLY. And if she gets defensive, drop the subject. It's not that important, really, is it?

    Another thing I want to emphasize -- if it seems like you're only paying attention to her when she does wrong, try spending some more effort doing the opposite. If she does something you appreciate, NO MATTER HOW SMALL, THANK HER. She will appreciate it and take it to heart. You may barely hear a 'you're welcome,' but it's WORTH SOMETHING. Trust me. Tell her you're proud of her when she does something right. Give her positive reinforcement. Don't think that you don't have an impact. Don't EVER think you don't have an impact. My parents, it seems, never said thankyou simply because they didn't think I listened. I listened very carefully, and it hurt that they never thanked me, or expressed appreciation. It made me grow up being very hard on myself, and I'm still learning to understand that I'm human and allowed a mistake every second decade.

     
    Old 04-03-2003, 06:43 AM   #14
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    Hey Mel. Glad to know he's going to meetings. My fiance was like that with my son while he was drinking and has been OH SO MUCH BETTER! now that he is 60 days sober. I was finally able to have a real conversation about him ordering my son around (my son is 6 with ADHD so you can imagine the disruption!) after he stopped drinking and he told me with remarkable, brutal honesty that as much as he loves my son, he hates the fact that he is only the "stepdad" and he truly hates my ex husband and that had been coloring his responses to my son. He has been working with a counselor on that issue so there is hope!

     
    Old 04-04-2003, 12:53 PM   #15
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    MelNor, maybe your husband has a problem with "emotional distance" that is, he KEEPS a safe distance for fear of rejection or other deeply-seeded pain.... ask him about his past relationships or consider family counseling.

     
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