Just got the words "I'm not your son, your not my mom", thrown in my face.

Liana - posted on 01/08/2015 ( 7 moms have responded )

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I always push my kids to do good in school and never to settle for just a passing grade but to have higher expectations. My stepson barely passed and he was relieved that he passed which was good, but I mentioned to him C's are not acceptable for him not to settle for a passing grade. Well I was just told I'm not your son, your not my mother. Those words hurt... HELP!!

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Jodi - posted on 01/08/2015

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Oh, wow. You are COMPARING him to your child? Way to go step-mom. Sorry, but that just isn't acceptable. You have been in his life for 7 whole months and you've already made him feel like a useless piece of shit. You put yourself in his shoes. Personally, I would have said that to you too.

Not every child is capable of getting A's. You need to understand that every child has different capabilities. I think you need to ask yourself if he made the EFFORT. There are many children who try their hardest and will never get more than a C. To punish for that (such as you have through verbally reprimanding him) when he has been proud of his efforts is a form of abuse, no matter how mild. You just chose to "tear him down". Tearing a child down will NEVER get the result you desire, especially when you are making the comparison with your own son.

Given your position as a step parent for 7 months, you have no right to say these things to him. Honestly, I'm horrified. I wouldn't say this to my own child, let alone my step son (and yes, I do have both biological and step children). And as a teacher myself, I would strongly encourage that you focus on EFFORT and not GRADE as this is the only way you are going to have a child with positive self-esteem and an internal intrinsic motivation.

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Sarah - posted on 01/09/2015

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Some kids respond to "pushing" and some don't. I have one that is very self-motivated and one who needs a nudge. These are my kids. I am not a step parent but I just don't think it is your place to criticize his grades, that is his mother (if she is around) and father's responsibility. Even if you did not compare him to your kids, that is probably what he heard. At minimum you told him he wasn't good enough. While you believe you are trying to help prep him for college, you are not going to succeed with negative feedback. His success in life is not directly related to the grades he gets in school, which (if any) college he goes too, or how hard he was pushed as a kid.

Ev - posted on 01/09/2015

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I get that you want this boy to do better but is the letter grade that important? What is important is that he does his best with the skills he has and passes the courses he takes. And your comment on college, " I am just trying to prepare him for when he goes off to college. With me pushing him now I will not be there for him in college to push him I want him to be able to push himself to always want to do better and not just settle for the bare minimum." How do you know he even wants to go to college in the future? Not all kids are going to want to go to college. He might want to go to a trade school. YOU have to realize no two kids are the same and even if you were just using your son as an example, to this boy you were comparing him to his step sibling. Maybe school is just not his thing and he is glad to get the C's he gets. Maybe he has issues with school skills you do not know about yet, and you can not tell me that you know this kid after only being his step mother for 7 months. The best way to get a kid to do something is to encourage them to do it. Letter grades are not that important. Do remind him he does need at least that C average to go to tech school or community college if he wants to go but do not assume he is going to make college that choice. My son has a combo of A's, B's, and C's. I am not pushing him to get certain grades and he knows he needs a good grade average for going on to school after high school. He is not going to college but a trade school to become a mechanic. College for him would be a night mare at best. Growing up he struggled with a lot of school things and had resource classes to help him over those issues. He brought home bad grades during grading periods because he could not understand the work as well as the others. But by the years end, he had a B or a C and sometimes an A in that course. I always told him to do the best that he could and if he did not make a passing grade we would know why. And now he has a high 3. plus grade as a senior. If you push a kid o do something, you are going to get the exact opposite be it step kids or your own.

Liana - posted on 01/09/2015

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It was never my intention in comparing him to my son I was simply giving him the example that even with a B I was still not pleased when I know they can do better, never did I compare him to my son. And I know it wasn't his greatest effort because I've heard him say to my daughter I didn't study for this or didn't study for that. So I know he can do better. I push my kids because no one else will and I push him as well because I know he has the potential to do better. I understand he has not had anyone push him before as I do. His father does push him but I feel it's not enough. Jacob tends to just settle with just passing grades. I am just trying to prepare him for when he goes off to college. With me pushing him now I will not be there for him in college to push him I want him to be able to push himself to always want to do better and not just settle for the bare minimum.

Sarah - posted on 01/08/2015

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You cannot take back what you said, so move forward. Talk it over with your husband and then maybe the two of you can talk to your step son. You are human, so you admit that to him, and apologize for hurting his feelings. Everyone is still adjusting to the new family dynamic. If he is capable of better grades let dad handle that for now.

Liana - posted on 01/08/2015

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I have been his stepmom for 7 months. I know it's a short period of time. Yes we have been getting along well. I treat him the same as I treat my own kids. In the conversation before he said those words he said "your not satisfied with anything" and I said "No, Isaac (my oldest son) would get B's and I would tell him I know you can do better". Jacob, my stepson, was offended that I was comparing him with my son and that's when he said those words. Was I wrong in being hard on him because of his grades? I haven't talked to him yet after he said those words.

Sarah - posted on 01/08/2015

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He was angry, probably as much with himself for not meeting expectations. He wanted to hurt your feelings and went for it. How long have you been his stepmother? Let him know that he hurt your feelings. Do you two get along well in general?

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