12 year old daughter gives way to much attitude to her stepfather

[deleted account] ( 10 moms have responded )

Hello, anyone out there that has any advise on how to help help? My 12 year old daughter goes to visit her biological father for a few weeks during the summer then comes home with a nasty attitude towards her stepfather and even myself. How can I help resolve this? Her biological father has no money to make the drive and meet for their weekend visitations, he has three children with three different mothers and maybe working on a fourth, lives in a two bedroom apartment with his girlfriends three small children, drives a beat down old car while me and her stepfather are capable of providing her with a normal lifestyle .Both myself and her stepfather work hard to proved a comfortable life for both our children, typical middle class lifestyle, own our home, two decent vehicles, her own room, computers, tablets etc.... But every time she comes home from her visit with her real dad she gives a spiteful, I can't stand looking at you attitude towards her stepfather.
It's like she takes her frustrations out on her stepfather instead of her completely F*** up of a biological father.
I do my best to point out that her stepfather loves her and works hard to give her all the things she has. My husband has become so tiered of this that it is driving a big wedge between them and I'm afraid it's going to permanently destroy their relationship and they will never be close the way they were when she was younger.
If anyone has any suggestions on what I can do to help rebuild the relationship between my daughter and her stepfather and how to get her to stop being such an attitude filled brat would be great!!!!

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Dove - posted on 08/17/2015

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Of course she's going to take it out on her stepfather. HE is the one that is there for her... he's her 'safety net.' It's likely that she feels if she takes it out on her father she might not get to see him at all anymore.

Now... that doesn't mean her behavior is acceptable, but it IS understandable and it's up to the adults in her life to realize where the behavior is coming from in order to best help her through it.

You mention how hard you both work to provide material possessions to your children, but I don't see mentioned family time and fun together (not saying you DON'T... just that it's not mentioned). Kids don't need computers and tablets and THINGS as much as they need time and love.

12 is a crappy time even under the BEST of circumstances... as a woman myself and the mother of two almost 14 year old girls I have come to the conclusion that hormones are EVIL... lol

How often do you guys have a 'family night' where you go out to dinner or a movie or just stay home and play games... or anything that is all of you together having fun? Choosing one night a week for even just an hour where you will all be together can go a long way in building relationships.

I would also suggest looking into some family counseling. I understand that her stepfather is frustrated at her behavior, but he needs to understand that while her behavior is NOT acceptable... it is normal and it takes time and patience and firm consistency to get through it. Letting it drive a wedge between them makes it just as much his fault (if not more since he is the adult) as it is hers.

♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 08/17/2015

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And you're being given advice, Jamie. She's 12, she's hormonal, she's confused, and she needs consistency.
SHE DOES NOT NEED you being negative about her biological father, her step dad lording "I give you this" over her head, or more material things.

Get her into some family counseling. Get yourselves into some as well.

♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 08/17/2015

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Honestly, all I got out of your OP is that you and stepdad are "so much better" than bio dad, because you can give your kids material things, and he can't.
You make most of your post about her "F*** up of a biological father."

I agree with both Raye and Dove. You looking down on the man that helped create her is not helping her attitude any at all.

I also agree that some family counseling is in order, because if a grown man is allowing the emotions of a 12 YO girl to drive a wedge into their relationship, he needs some parenting advice.

SHE needs to feel love. Not material love, but LOVE. She sees how you talk about and feel about her Dad, and she can't reconcile that with how she feels about him (because she loves him, and she loves you, and she can't understand why you don't get along, and why you despise him) with how she feels about step dad. OF COURSE she's not going to take things out on her biological father, because he's not the root of her confusion, not to mention she's probably worried that he will stop visiting entirely. On that note, would it be that difficult for you to meet him in the middle when he's having problems coming all the way to visit? It would definitely be the adult thing to do, and show her that, while you and her father can't be together, at least you can cooperate for HER sake.

Basically, I think Dove and Raye stated things pretty well.

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Tcastaneda - posted on 10/24/2015

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Not sure if the relationship has gotten better since the post but I may have some insight. I am now33 but i went thru this or similar situation. My mom and dad split when I was 7 she started dating a man and for about 8-9 yrs steady. Long story short we did not see my dad as much until I was older and treated her boyfriend likecrap we ddidn't listen to him and blamed him for my mom and dads split which had nothing to do with it. Her boyfriend had no kids at the time and didn't really understand everything about kids etc. I remember him lecturing me as i got into trouble in my early teen yrs and i just ignored him and didn't care. We (my sister and I) disrespected his house, and he still never Gave up on trying to be the bigger person. Now i regret it since he was a great guy to my mom and back then I couldn't see it or understand it, your child has to just grow with time , sometimes at that age we do not see or care how we treat others,we are in our own bubble. I would tell your husband not to give up and she is definately struggling inside with something. He can maybe try to show he cares by continuing to try nice gestures,pray!,and treat u openly with the upmost respect. She may see that ? Anyways good luck.

Andrea - posted on 10/21/2015

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I need some advice, but do not know how to post my story on here....I've got tough skin, and at a dire need for advice

Raye - posted on 08/18/2015

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And another one deletes their account because they don't like the advice they're given. I'm sorry, but when adults can't even speak to each other to parent their child, who has the attitude problem? the child? or the parents? These people need to get a grip.

[deleted account]

I have legal and physical custody for a reason... No, I have not spoken with the biological father because we do not get alone. The parts of my post that describe her father was just in reference to describe some of the differences in home life between the two us. All my point was is that it hurts myself and probably the one who takes actual responsibility for her , that she can be disrespectful to him and to reach out and find someone who can offer some helpful advice on how to help her deal with things without being rude.

Raye - posted on 08/17/2015

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I'm sorry if I misconstrued your words, but half your post was about how you're so much better than her "completely F*** up" dad. There was nothing about the actual things your daughter is doing that is disrespectful to her step-father, or what you've done so far to talk to her about why she comes home like that. Have you spoken to her father (nicely) to find out how she behaves when she's with him? Or get his opinion on why she might act badly when she gets home? You made a baby with the man, and now you have to share parenting. Period. If you two could get over your own hurts toward each other, maybe you would have a happier child.

[deleted account]

You think working hard and striving to have a middle class life is High Horse of me? It's called being a normal functioning part of society!!!! Trust me there are plenty of people out there that have much more then I do. Besides my focus isn't on someone who choose to make the same mistakes over and over again, It's on how to help my daughter work out her frustrations and not take them out on the one who is actually there for her. Of course we spend time with our children and participate in fun loving family activities, rather it be just hanging out watching TV or actually going places and doing things. Me and my husband have been together since my daughter was 3 years old, he loves her as if she were his own.They were very close when she was young and I hate to see that change, It probably bothers me more then it dose him, but I'm afraid in the long run there relationship won't be a good one.

Raye - posted on 08/17/2015

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I agree with Dove. I had the same thought about you going through the list of material items that the girl gets from you, but not her father. What she needs is love and quality time. Yes, you give her comforts, and that is something. But because her father can't give her those things doesn't make him a bad father. You could be inadvertently contributing to her attitude... she may want to show some loyalty toward her father, but YOUR attitude about him and continued looking down on him from your high horse isn't going to help resolve anyone's feelings.

If you can show her how all parental figures love her and want what's best for her in their own way, then maybe she wouldn't be so defensive. Let her know she can talk to you and air her frustrations without blame and negativity, and she will feel more secure. Counseling might be helpful for you all, to work through some of her issues and learn how to better communicate with each other.

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