C.D. asks from Placentia, CA on December 06, 2007
Seeking Moms - Placentia,CA
Just wondering if any moms out there have step kids but are really having a hard time with them cause the mother is brain washing them? If anyone has any advise how i can fix this please help because i am starting to feel hate for the kids and dont want that.
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So What Happened?™
just want to thank u all for your advise it is really helping me to know what i am doing wrong and how to fix it.
L.G. answers from San Luis Obispo on December 10, 2007
Find someone to vent to that is not your husband. I have two grown stepdaughters and, sorry to say, I think they treat their Dad poorly due to repeated brainwashing over the years. But if they need something it's "Daddy" all the way (and yes, they still call him Daddy, even in their late twenties). My best response to anything has been with a smile and support, even if my heart is not in it. I have a wonderful best friend who has heard more than her share on this topic and always has something uplifting to say. Vent to us!
P.S. -- recently the stepdaughters' mother (the brainwasher) died and we were asked by them to attend the funeral. We did as requested with big smiles on our faces and open arms. All went better than expected, the extended family was happy to see my husband after all these years and to meet me and our 3-1/2 year-old son. Strange situation but sometimes in these times of blended families you do what you have to do, or what you're asked to do.
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G.V. answers from San Francisco on December 12, 2007
Hello, i have 3 older step daughters and constantly have to deal with their mom's issues. Therefore, I can understand somewhat your dilema. Mine are older and all girls, so, if you can believe it there is more drama there. I try to ignore it all, sometimes being so hard to do. But when I fell in love with my hubby, I fell in love w/ them too. So I don't feel I can turn my back or feel anything but pity for the whole situation. I do my best and hope that someday they will appreciate it. One of them still lives with me now, she is 22 and still acts like a teenager, mainly now that I have just had my first child with my husband. We had a baby boy, so I think they all feel displaced by him being the boy they think their dad always wanted. And now the focus and attention, particularly from me going to the baby.
Please understand that it is not the kids fault, but a mean, manipulating, immature grown up at the other end pulling the strings.
I try to reassure them and love them the best way I can. I never ever say anything negative about their mom to them or about her with anyone. I keep hoping that the same way I respect her as their mom, they will understand and see the difference between my home and hers and stop doing the she said, we said thing - I tell them i would prefer not to discuss what goes on in her home. I do what I do and always communicate to them that you have to do the right thing to enjoy peace in your life, and the older they get the more I think they understand, but it takes a long time for anyone to grow up.
You are very young, but don't feel discouraged specially when you enjoy a great relationship with your husband, and now with your young child put all that aside and refuse to let that negative energy filter into what you really feel and want. I think the best thing is knowing there are other women out there in your shoes and there are lots of success stories.
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L.F. answers from San Francisco on December 11, 2007
I have an 11 year old stepkid and we're expecting our child in the middle of next year. A thing to remember here is what you *can* control. Baby mama will usually try to brainwash the kids...BUT, you can counter that by being a good role model...show the stepkids what the mother can't. Don't bad mouth the mother because in a kid's eyes, mother is usually God. Eventually, the kids will learn that their mom is missing a few screws in the head and not believe what she says.
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C.C. answers from San Francisco on February 06, 2008
I've been a stepmom to my 2 kiddies for 4 years now. Here's my advice:
1. Be firm, fair, kind and consistent.
2. Be sure they know the rules for behavior in your home and stick with it.
3. DO treat them just like they were your own kids; you should be creating your own family, including them. If you get the "you're not my mom" business, just say, "No, but I'm still your PARENT..."
4. Get them involved with their baby stepsister.
5. Don't badmouth their mom in front of them. You don't say how old they are but at some point they will be able to tell the difference between what Mom tells them and what they see/experience for themselves. Be patient, this can take awhile, but stay your course!
6. Spend time with each stepkid alone, and try to find something you both enjoy or can connect on. It can be big stuff, like horseback riding, or little stuff, like checking out funny animal pictures on the internet. Even just a little time spent one on one can go a LOOONG way!
7. Be sure to keep time for you and your husband.
It's really, really important for ALL the kids to see the two of you in a loving, stable relationship. My steppies will scream "EW! GROSS!" when they see us kissing and laughing, but they love it; it makes them feel happy and safe (in their mom's home they have been subjected to a lot of ugly fighting between their mom and stepdad).
8.Take some time out for yourself. Insist on it. Go out with girlfriends and vent about the freaky mother...
9. Deal with the big chunks and brush the little crumbs to the side; the small stuff doesn't matter. If you have to leave dirty dishes in the kitchen for a day or so, or in order to make time for yourself, your guy, or the kids, do it. No one will die, I PROMISE! :)
10. RELAX...you won't resolve this in a day, a month, or maybe even a year...so pace yourself! It's all good. You DO have a lot on your plate, but I bet you can rise to the occasion!
R.S. answers from Los Angeles on December 07, 2007
Wow- I think that is a lot to adjust to no matter how old you are! My only bit of advise on step children is this-remember that you are the adult and never try to interfere with their relationship with their dad, or his relation to their mother. As one who loathes my step mother it is because she aways assumed I had adult intentions when I was just being a kid, she played selfish childish games for my father's attention, and ultimately runied my entire relationship with my father. Just keep doing what you are doing-you are setting a good example of a being a mother and what a working, responsible adult should do. Love and encourage the children as if they are your own, and they will come to respect and love you back. Set boundries and be open to their imput to create an open relationship... and NEVER talk bad about thier mother to them. They will come to realize that thier mother's impressions of you are wrong in their own time and in their own experience with you.
Take a deep breath, we are dealt the cards we are meant to have. Perhaps you are a blessing in their lives.
J.G. answers from Sacramento on December 10, 2007
Yes, I have a stechild. Yes, it is the hardest thing you will ever do. Stay positive, you don't have to be the disciplinarian, let Dad and Mom handle it (since they are both very visible in the children's lives). Provide suggestions for thier growth (emotionally, physically and educationally) and a peaceful home. The highest achieveing relationship you should expect (for a stepparent) is to effectively assume the role of babysitter that the kids want to have watch them. I know that sounds goofy, but that is the most sound advice I have ever been given. Be there to keep the kids fed, safe, and entertained and defer strict disicpline to the parents. Find something else to focus on that is a benefit of you working. Set financial goals with your husband so maybe you can work less. Keep your head up...
M.B. answers from Los Angeles on December 13, 2007
I have a step daughter who is 16 yrs and a five yr old. I've known my s/d since she was 6 and married her father when she was 8. Everything was great in the beginning. Then something horrible happened (that I can't go into.) Her mom's been brainwashing her since she was little. I learned a long time ago to not try to be a parent to her. You need to let your husband be the parent, especially the discipling, in your home. You can't control what the mom does or says, just make sure your own home is a safe and happy place. I always make sure my step-daughter has food to eat and I don't pry into her personal life. I do, however, always expect Respect ("please" and "thank-you")and that she cleans up after herself. Now, our relationship is pleasant enough and she even talks to me about boys. Just remember the magic number, 18, as in years old. Patience.
T.M. answers from Los Angeles on December 08, 2007
There is nothing you can do! Brain-washing is brain-washing. You can love them because they are children and innocent. It is the hardest thing you will ever do. There is nothing like raising someone else's children! What is worse is their Mother has to get even and make every thing harder for not only you and your husband, but her own children!
Good Luck and God Bless