Blending Families

Heidi - posted on 10/08/2014 ( 7 moms have responded )

5

0

1

Please tell me if I'm over reacting. My daughter had the cutest most adorable love bird that became the family pet not long after she brought it home. If you've never had a bird it might be hard to believe but he truly had a cute, and funny personality and loved attention but mainly from my daughter and my husband, but the bird was hers. We all came to love this sweet little bird who even played ball with a little plastic bee bee. It was the cutest thing. Well, last weekend the bird was trying to get the attention of one of my step son's while he was playing an Xbox game, which he never puts down, and he was so annoyed by the bird that he hit or punched him so hard ultimately breaking his neck causing him to die just shortly after that. We were all just heartbroken (still are)and in tears especially my daughter who held him until he died. We tried calling around to small veterinary clinics but no one was open on a Sunday afternoon and in a small town. So, we buried the sweet thing on our hillside but what makes this whole thing even worse is that the boy who killed our family pet never apologized to any of us let alone my daughter who shared the pet she treasured so much with all of us. I brought up the fact to my husband that his son has not apologized to my daughter yet and his response was that there is no time limit on saying sorry and that he told him to apologize. Well, my thoughts are that if the apology doesn't come right away, then it doesn't mean as much if anything! Maybe he is not sorry for what he did. Another hard thing for me and the other kids is that we have all seen this kid swing at the bird before trying to get him to go away and I warned all the kids that if they hurt the bird there will be consequences! He is grounded from his Xbox but I don't know how long because my husband and I don't or try not to discipline each other's children. Well, this time I am so heartbroken and bothered by this and haven't gotten over the fact of no apology. I am so proud of my daughter and her pure and forgiving heart, she is heartbroken but not very angry with this child that killed her pet. They are all teenagers but I have taught my children that if you hurt someone or something no matter if it was your fault or not, that you apologize! I think it speaks volumes about their character if they can apologize for their actions if they have hurt someone and if they have a hard time doing so, then we must teach them the right thing to do as their parent. Am I over reacting to be bothered so deeply by this?

7 Comments

View replies by

Dove - posted on 10/08/2014

11,897

0

1350

I would not be able to refrain from consequences if I were living in a household where someone intentionally hurt and killed an animal in our home. He needs to be in some serious counseling and I would not rest w/ the situation until he were. There is no excuse for a teenager hitting a bird. Making him apologize at this point is useless. He needs help before his anger causes him to kill a person.

Ev - posted on 10/08/2014

7,952

7

918

I agree with you, Heidi. But to make someone apologize for the sake of the act is one thing and for that person to apologize and mean it is another. Maybe this child with the trauma of having a mother walk out on him at such a young age and at a moment he most needed a mother's touch might have something to do with how he and is sibling are. Maybe it takes them a while to get the courage or on the right track to do so. Maybe these children need some counseling. Have you and your husband thought of that?

Heidi - posted on 10/08/2014

5

0

1

Thank you for your response, it was very helpful and valid to my situation. I am bothered by this terrible situation on many levels I guess. I feel guilty because this child, whom my children did not choose to live with, killed one of the things she loved very much. I feel horrible because she has been hurt and this is very troubling and upsetting to me that he has not apologized to my daughter or any of us because we all really loved this bird. He was very unique. I am struggling with trying not to be angry with him, but it so hard when he shows no remorse and with no apology. My children are very different from my husband's being that they are very conscientious and aware of how they make people feel especially if they have hurt someone's feelings in any way. His children are completely the opposite. They don't say much to anyone and don't show much emotion about anything. Kind of strange but they are well behaved almost all the time, just don't show much personality. Their mother left them when they were 5 years old and they were preemies in the hospital for over 3 months after birth and their father has raised them alone since then. I plan on talking to him myself to tell him that it is very hurtful that he has not apologized and that if you hurt someone or something on purpose or not, you apologize! I used to make my children apologize to their teachers the next day if they misbehaved in class and I think it is a very valuable thing to learn how to say sorry if you have wronged someone. Thank you for your reply.

Sarah - posted on 10/08/2014

9,461

0

22

I don't think you are over reacting, but I do think you are affected by your own grief for the bird and for your daughter's pain. Your and your husband are right to not discipline each others kids. Your stepson made a terrible mistake and I hope he is sorry.
I don't there is necessarily a time limit on apologies. What counts more is that it is a true, heartfelt apology. Maybe he is embarrassed and ashamed by what he did and is afraid to apologize. I do think dad needs to talk to him and get to the bottom of things. My concern is that if he isn't sorry that he killed another living creature, you have a different problem then just bad manners. While teenagers are very self centered, he should have empathy and be able to understand the gravity of what he did. Whether it was deliberate or not, he should have some emotional response; shame, guilt, sadness, fear. Once you get dad to talk to him, he should give a direct, personal apology to your daughter. I am so sorry for your loss!

Ev - posted on 10/08/2014

7,952

7

918

Have you and your husband ever sat down and discussed the rules of the house and the way they would be handled if broken and what consequences would go with them? How long have you two been married or together? I think some counseling would be good to get you two on the same pages with the kids there all at once. I think that communication on this needs some work as well. Just my thoughts.

Join Circle of Moms

Sign up for Circle of Moms and be a part of this community! Membership is just one click away.

Join Circle of Moms