Step-Mom needs good Advice

Sidney - posted on 08/26/2013 ( 2 moms have responded )

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My eleven yr. old step-daughter is a very important part of my family. I love her very much. With that being said I don't think she is heading down the right path. She lives with her mom and is supposed to visit us on the weekends and rarely does. Last time she had the excuse that she wanted to decorate her room and a lot of times the excuse is birthday parties, church, or just doesn't want to visit. I know that she is growing more socially and has many activities that she is involved in that makes it difficult to make the hour track to our house to stay the weekend with us, but I really can't see the sense of her getting to decide when it is so important for her to get time with us. It seems like she is distancing herself from her father and it really concerns me. Her mother gives her medicine all the time and when she gets over here every ache is a big deal and complains constantly about being sick.... and homesick regularly crying for her mom while she is over here. I serve as a buffer between this vibrant person who struggling with her pre-pubescent years and borderline hypochondria and her father who isn't the most patient of people, but a loving father who wants his little girl to love and miss him too. Please help me I don't know what to do and talking to her mother isn't really in the picture because I often get disregarded and misunderstood because of my status as a step-mother. I don't know what to do I just want my family to be whole, healthy, and happy.

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Sidney - posted on 09/01/2013

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I know that force is best used in small measures... I will try a talk. It is sooo hard though not to make something like this confrontational. I know she is young and I remember some of the horrible things I had said to my mom and dad, but I think it really broke my heart when my mother-in-law told me that my step-daughter said that she wished that her mother's ex husband was her real father. I never told my husband, and what she said has weighed on me tremendously. How can I protect everyone and still bring truth to the table? I feel like I am going to get roasted. Wish me luck in this active listening venture aka poking the dragons with a stick, but if this family can't say truthful and heartfelt words to one another we are going to be in big trouble big time. My house is too small to have an elephant in the room.

Lindsay - posted on 08/27/2013

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You could try sitting down with your husband and her and talk to her and see whats really going on but I wouldn't force her because then she will just be less likely to want to come stay with you guys. I know it is very hard for you and her father to feel like she doesn't want to see you guys, but you also have to respect what she wants to do to a certain extent. Its a fine line between being parents and enforcing things that parents should and letting her make her own decision so she doesn't end up resenting you guys. Good luck. Thats a hard situation to be in.

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