How do other blended families live in harmony?

Blanca - posted on 04/20/2010 ( 20 moms have responded )

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I'm just trying to figure out if there is a secert out ther to living in harmony with a mixed family. I have a 15 yr old step daughter that constanly is giving me problems. She even told me that she does things just to get me mad. I am at the point that I'm ready to pull my hair out...right now I'm just counting down the days till she can move out. Need help what do I do?

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Becky - posted on 04/22/2010

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Its me again I have alot to say about this. Sorry if you are tired of hearing from me.
Alcatraz Regulation 5 "You are entitled to Food, Clothing, Shelter, and Medical Attention if Needed. EVERYTHING ELSE IS A PRIVELEGE."
This is the approach we take to ANY of the teens in our house who use the attitude of entitlment.
With my son we took away every privelege TV Phone Ipod game boy. He had 15 min per meal to come out of his room and eat 5 min to shower. He had to ride the bus to school, no more rides from brother or Mom. He had specific days and times to do his laundry. His room had to be kept clean at all times. He could read or draw for his entertainment or do his homework. He was told he must make it right with each member of this household. It took this hard headed young man 4 months to humble himself enough before he first apologized to my husband and me. Then one at a time and over the course of several weeks he apologized to everyone else. Now he has a few privleges back but is still in a probationary period. Old habits die hard. We would like him to want to be a part OF the Family not apart From the Family. I know this sounds ruff but the only other choice was to wait it out and be victimized by him or lay down the law basic and without any negotiating.Do NOT GIVE IN!

Becky - posted on 04/21/2010

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Hi there Going to be Bald or Crazy, First of all I have two boys 17 and 14. My husband has five children 24 daughter 22son 21 son 15 son 12 son. Wow thats alot. Well this is what I have learned in this situation. First of all she is probably seeking a reaction. Secondly you may be reinforcing her behavior by in very deed Reacting. If her actions are deserving of a consequence, then give one. The whole time staying in complete control. This will throw her for a loop when you are not reacting to her manipulative behavior. Good Luck!! THE ONLY REAL CONTROL IS SELF CONTROL.

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Blanca - posted on 04/24/2010

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Vicki,

I tried the whole treat them as my own...i have done everything the same as if they were my own. The only difference is that I told my husbands kids that i would never try to force them to call me mom and that i was only here to watch out for them when they did come stay with us and that i would never hit them. I hold all the chores rules and punishments the same. I didnt treat them any different then my own. If i bought one child something I bought all of them the same something.

That i did come to understand because i too was raised in a blended family. I have no problems with my 10 year old step son and our 9 year old step daughter but the 15 year old has done everything in her power to brake us up. From stealing money out of my wallet, my jewlery, make up clothes, personal hygene stuff and now she has went to the cops and told them my husband and i abuse her. I just hate the path my house hold is going down....why is all i want to know.

Vicki - posted on 04/24/2010

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Well first of all, it's important to remember that ALL girls around this age are just as difficult whether or not they are steps or not.
We were a blended family also. I had two girls, my hubby the three boys. One thing that made it work for us was control. Another that made it work was that we considered ALL the kids "ours". I treated them as they were my own. That could be good or bad thing LOL (just ask my girls!).
When the boys moved in with us, we made it very clear to them....they follow our rules or go back to their mother. They were also told that they were here, we loved them, the rules were there for a reason. IF THEY DECIDED TO GO BACK, we did not have a revolving door. They go back, they stay back. Kids use parents against one another (whether together or not), it is worse when divorced. So they had the opportunity to be with us, if they didn't like the rules, they could go back, but they stay back once they leave. That was made clear from the beginning. It was not easy. But raising kids is NOT easy. It's a tough job that you have to work at every day. The main thing is that they knew we loved them. Oh, and LOTS OF PRAYER!
Hope this helps,
Vicki

Blanca - posted on 04/24/2010

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Tami,
I have tried it all...i really have i have done one on one time i have tried every bit of advice i could get and in return she said we abuse her and now look at the nasty spot we are in...she is no longer welcomed in my world and I am just waiting to see what is the next step .

Blanca - posted on 04/24/2010

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well dad and i have eachothers backs and we are both very strict. we are both in the army and hold to the army standards in the house as well as we both were military brats so...discipline is not lacking in our house but she is determined to tear this family apart and she is doing a pretty good job at it.

Blanca - posted on 04/24/2010

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Well our day just got great yesterday. Our fifteen year old took it upon her self to tell the school counselor that we beat her. We spent all day yesterday talking to social services and the cops. Wow....we have never laid our hands on her and yes like you we have taken everything from her. She is only allowed in her room and books and homework is all she gots so she decided to call abuse on us. Now we have to let social services in our house to check on our kids to make sure we aint beating any of them. We also have to go to counseling once a week with the social service agent with the entire family. If we said no to any of this then they were going to take us to court. They have no evidence its her word against ours and oh by the way when we went to pick her up from school because she decided she was too scared to ride the bus home social services was there again. Before they would let us talk to her they went in the school and talked to her and which she once again changed her story of what we did to her. I am so pissed because now she is messing with my other childrens lives. If they think for a second the kids are in harm they could take them from us and our youngest son is really sick...we are lucky to have each day with him...he has a disease that is killing him slowly and we never know when will be his last...and if they take them i would go crazy...oh my god i want this girl out of my house cause i dont want my other children expose to this anymore.

Jeney - posted on 04/24/2010

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I have two step kids that are 8 and 6 but i've had them for 3 years and they really know that their mother isnt a good person so we're able to make it work. The 6 year old still tells me Im his second fav mother because he was 3 when we got him and dont remember, but I just show him that Im here now. I dont try to do anything but be myself and his mother, whats best for him. In the long run they will thank you... My step mother and i are now best friends and my stepfather is really me dad... just know that one day it will be over. Shes a teenager so if you were her real mother there would just be something else! lol... good luck

Crystal - posted on 04/24/2010

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To be in harmony i believe that you and your husband should be in sync. When she does something your husband should take care of it.

Tami - posted on 04/23/2010

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Not saying that you don't but mayb you should give her some one on one time with just you and her. My step daughter is 14 it helps and sometimes I get her Dad to speak to her when she does something wrong just so it isn't just me gettin after her all th time. I think the one on one time will help alot

Becky - posted on 04/22/2010

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I really didn't like my bonus daughter at first. I thought she was spoiled and very bratty. She will be 10 very soon. I try to stay calm but we have battle of wills that last for months. These last 8 or so months it has been over her getting the dishes done. She doesn't want to help and is still trying to figure out ways to not do them. I just have her do them regardless. There is strict discipline in place. It's very rare I give her an inch, only because it tends to lead to misbehavior. More important I have support of DAD. You have got to have that to even think you have a chance.

Jennifer - posted on 04/22/2010

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i am relying only to sa yI HEAR YA! and if anyone actually has a way that things are harmonious let me knnow! I have kids and been divorced for a while and any relationshi I have where they have kids too turns out badly. Different rules, parentling styles, way of thinking , treating your kids differnt or less imortant as theirs yeah its awesome isnt it! havent been able to make it work yet! and BOY have i tried

Blanca - posted on 04/22/2010

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Yeah we are now at that point. I am putting a lock on my bedroom door to keep her from stealing anymore of my things and we are starting this new thing that we will be checking her room and we are going to do surprise inspections at her school too. I'm going to try very hard to not let her get to me and hopefully one day my house will be peaceful once again. I really can't wait. Her dad and I have tried everything we could think of to make a change but haven't had any luck...right now its at the point were we are just bidding our time for her to turn 18 and have her move out...which is pretty sad but we just dont know what else to do.

Becky - posted on 04/21/2010

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You may also remember that you do not have to engadge in an argument with her. You have that choice. She may be used to wearing her mother down by arguing and getting her way. I also got tickled at your comment about counting down the days. I feel that at times with my own boys and I gave birth to them its definately a decision that you make as a Stepparent to love them just the way you got them. My experience with a child like her was my own son, my husband finally helped me to see the light that I was doing him more harm than good. I was teaching him how much it would take to wear me down till I would give up. Not a good life skill, thankfully after a continual very strict reform type regimine that I designed he no longer controls the entire household.

Becky - posted on 04/21/2010

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Ultimately she would rather have her Dad all to herself than to have you in the picture. She runs you off she wins! At this age shes not thinking of anyone else but herself. Eventually and after alot of self time outs and flat out ignoring her, you will take the place of the Mother of the house and you will feel the yourself and the rest of the house relax. Don't let your gaurd down to quickly teens are always looking for an opprotunity to get the upper hand.

Blanca - posted on 04/21/2010

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Yeah i think that is my biggest problem....I have the tendancy to loose my temper very quick with her now only because i know everything she does she does just to make me mad...I agree that i need to stay more calm and maybe she will stop being so hard headed.

Blanca - posted on 04/21/2010

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Well her dad and I have exsuted all efforts to fix this and haven't been succesful. I hate that my house is so tense...i always wanted the relaxed house and wanted to be the person the kids could come and talk to about their problems but since its not working out that way it has me real down.

Kristina - posted on 04/20/2010

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Has her dad tried talking to her about the way she is acting? That is the only other idea I can think of is she is not being receptive of your efforts... I wish I could be more help.

Blanca - posted on 04/20/2010

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Yeah, I have tried that...I have told her that I'm not here to take the place of her mom and that I'm just here to help her when she needs it yet she still does everything she can to make me mad. I just want to be able to live in the house and not feel stressed out cause I know that I'm going to come home to something crazy everyday with her.

Kristina - posted on 04/20/2010

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I actually used to be that kind of teenager... I was horrible to my step-dad (thankfully he forgave me!).. Don't let her see you get upset, stay calm and be as sweet as possible... If she sees you upset she'll view it as she "wins".... Try to find something you both like or somethign she likes that you can tolerate and tell her you want to call a "truce" for her fathers sake (she maybe more receptive if you make it about her Dad and not about you)... tell her want to be able to be nice to each other because you both care about her Dad and it hurts him to see you two not get along... In the end I wish you luck, trying to talk to her nicely is the best advice, she may think you're tryingto replace her mom, or that her dad wont have as much time for her, or some other completely untrue, teenage girl emotional thing...

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