My Step Blank ( Fill It in with Whichever Title Fits) Hates Me

Updated on March 12, 2011
D.S. asks from Katy, TX
16 answers

why do step kids always feel like the step parents hate them it goes both ways. we dont hate them we love them are we showing it wrong?? or is this a normal "phase" we both interact the same with all the kids do things with them do special things for them. but it seems like they all feel the steps hate them. need advice from grown step kids and step parents and does this phase pass???? we dont parent one diffrent from another. we dont show favortism. any ideas?

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So What Happened?

its not the kids saying they hate us it is them thinking we hate them. you all had alot of good answers from both sides. but the trend I am starting to notice is they only think we hate them when they are not getting their way. it seems if they are trying to get moms rules applied in our house is when they think we hate them cause we are not bending on rules. "well my mom lets me do x" and its not fair we dont so obviously we must hate them. after all one mom doesnt make them clean up after themselves and we do and we hear she hates me. or mom gives them no curfew and we do we hear she hates me. or when so disciplines my son and he is not getting what he wants he says my so hates him. it is starting to appear to me that it is an attmept at a guilt trip to get their way. stilll trying to figure out if this is just a guilt trip a phase or something else there. thanks for the input.

Featured Answers



answers from Salt Lake City on

Kids go though this with "real" parents too. I can't even count how many times I've heard "I hate you"... and they aren't even teenagers yet! It boils down to, parenting is not about being their friend, and sometimes we just have to be tough - they see it as "mean". And, unfortunately, when it is a step parent, they have that extra disconnect of you not being the "real" mom.

Just continue to be patient. Focus on the good things they do as much as possible. Praise them any time they do a good job! And discipline with dignity - don't try to shame them or make them feel bad, just go with the consequence.

I have finally (after becoming an adult) starting liking and respecting my step-dad, but there have been other issues there as well, and I think most kids will come around earlier.

4 moms found this helpful


answers from New York on

I think every child wishes mom and dad would live together. a step parent is the constant reminder that mom and dad aren't getting together any time soon

3 moms found this helpful

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answers from Pittsburgh on

I had a SF from about the age of 16. He was a very constant figure, the pillar of stability. I'm sure I treated him horribly at times, but he was clearly more of a father to me than my own father ever was. Your step kids WILL see this--maybe not right now, but they will down the road.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Portland on

My mom's been married multiple times. I have two stepmoms, and four stepdads. The first stepdad adopted me (I call him my "growing up dad") and I didn't even know I wasn't 'his' until I was older. Never thought he 'hated' me. He remarried a woman who I sort of thought hated me-- short story, she had a lot of allergies and a lot of migraines and just had a hard time 'dealing' with us visiting in general. My bio dad's wife has been my saving grace in many ways-- I met her (them) when I was 14 and never thought she hated me. I've grown to love and appreciate her care and concern over the years.

As for the last three guys my mom has married-- well, she's got her problems and knows how to pick'em, so to speak. I don't think they were typical stepdads, I guess, because the one I did live with from 8-14 was categorically abusive. Her 4th husband was just a real jerk and I was 17 when they met, 21 when they married.

I would say that the hardest things to deal with regarding my stepmom and adoptive father was that we felt she didn't like us or want to be with us because she was so sick. We didn't understand that someone could be so beset by allergies, and our mother practiced a lot of parental alienation toward all of her exes and their spouses.

My advice, be the best mom you can be to all the kids, be present, and be patient. If you are loving and looking out for their best interest, they'll eventually see it. It took me some time to see how much my bio dad's wife stood up for me, stretched herself for me, and showed me that there were better ways to live. I love her for it so much now and we have a good relationship.

It's brave to be a good stepparent!

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Austin on

I think it's hard to be a kid and all of a sudden you are told, "Here is your new parent" and that brings a lot of emotions. They really want their natural parents to be married but can't have that. Kids are expected to treat this new person with the love and respect that they would treat their natural parents but this person is an intruder in a lot of ways.

Then if new kids come along, there is the constant reminder that these are the "real" kids in the remarriage. These new children get to have what the step kids can't (their natural parents raising them). Kids, no matter how old, often don't know how to deal with the anger inside and will say things to you that you can't take personally (unless, of course, you are horrible). Just be sure to validate that their feelings are real. You can say things like, "I know this must be hard for you that I am here. I'm sorry" or "It must seem like I like ____ more than you." At various times, try to compliment them (don't go overboard or it won't seem sincere) on something that they would assume you don't notice. Or look at pictures of them when they were younger and tell them you wish you could have seen that and ask them about it.

Go online and look up blogs and forums about how to be a good step-parent. As others have said, it may take a long time, but in the end they can look back and see that you really did love them.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from New York on

I don't know if this would answer your question but my mom just stared dating my step father I use to hate him.
My mom come out of a poisoning relation ship with my father and I just wanted her to don't have to deal with that situation again.
I also didn't thought it would last and I thought that my mom should have focus more in her kids instead of taking her chances with a guy that I couldn't see what the heck she saw on him.
I was older (15 yo) so it wasn't like he was trying to spend quality time with me or try to gain me with toys or anything.
Well, now I am here (US) for a while and my mom is still in Mexico, they have a wonderful daughter (she is 15) and my mom is very happy with him.
Sometimes I wonder what would had happen if I would have happen if I would have break them apart.
How I would feel know that I left her in there to make my life here and she would all alone, yikes!
I am happy she has somebody that loves her and that she loves, but it took a couple years and to be more mature to understand that.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Los Angeles on

I think as a step parent you have to drop the title and the stigma that comes with it. Discipline should come from the biological parent and a healty relationship be build between the child and step-parent. Dont refer to yourself as SP, better their fathers wife, it adds a level of respect. Some times as a SP its hard to take a step back but you have to. I have noticed an extreme turn around in my 2 step sons as I dont try and parent then, rather enjoy my time with them, learn more about them, and just love and care for them.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Boston on

I think it depends a lot on the age and personality of the kids, and the way their parents react to each other and to the new spouses. If there is animosity the kids will pick up on it and act accordingly.
I personally love my step mother, and I have never felt like she hated me. BUT, my parents always acted civil to each other, and would not have tolerated by brother or I disrespecting anyone. Ever. Plus my mom always made it clear to anyone my father dated after the divorce that she in no way wanted him back, and as long as he was with someone else he wouldn't try to come back.
The best advice I can give, and it would be to all adults involved, is to attempt to befriend each other, or at the very least be civil and try to get on the same page, and don't ever badmouth anyone, especially each other. Kids learn what they see, and if they see (or hear) negativity from anyone involved in being a role model to them, they will think it's OK to behave that way and they will in turn treat others that way themselves.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Boston on

Sometimes, it isn't at all about the step parent -- it's the kid. It's not about actual favoritism or not loving them or showing things wrong. It can just be a perception on the part of the child. And the best thing is to show them consistent love and solid parenting. And wait. And wait. And wait...

Time is the best healer. Well, that and love and stability and never trash the bio parents (even if they deserve it).

Hang in! It really does get better.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Charlotte on

I think it must be a phase because a lot of the kids I know with stepparents eventually grew to like them. Fairy tales pretty much teach children from the start that stepparents are wicked. Don't get me wrong; I like fairy tales. I just think the values are a bit skewed and they're pretty violent stories.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

As my husband always says, its just that the biological parent is used to their behavior and it is new to the step parent. Doesnt mean its right, and doesnt mean it is acceptable but because they have to change it, the blame is placed on the stepparent.

From one stepmom and stepdad to another, Hang in there!

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Modesto on

I never felt like my stepdad hated me. I'm pretty certain my stepkids dont think I hate them.
Do you compete with them for their dads attention? What would give them reason to think you hate them?
If they are teens, teens hate parents for awhile no matter what in lots of matter if they are step or bio.
Just be a good mom figure in the house and they'll get over it eventually. Don't spoil them or treat them different than your biological children.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Houston on

You say you interact the same with all the kids and don't show favoritism, but how are you so sure? It is obvious that something is going on. You should talk to them on a regular basis and ask them what you've done that makes them hate you and why they feel the way they do. This needs to be a regular conversation so you can figure things out because it probably won't all come out in one discussion. Listen to them and see what you can do to make the relationship better. I don't care what anyone says, it is NOT normal for your kids to hate you. I have 2 teenagers and they have never said they hated me. Sure they've not liked my decisions at times, but never to the point of "hating" me. Those are very strong words and things aren't right in a family if those words are being used.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Houston on

As a stepchild I can tell you this is normal. Whether you are a "step" or a natural parent the kid/teen/preteen is going to go through a phase where they either can't stand you or think you can't stand them. With blended families though there are more things to adjust to. Like feelings that you are trying to replace a parent, the realization that their parents are not going to get back together (which I think is always in the back of kids minds) and just trying to adjust to the whole situation. Have patients, keep reenforcing the rules no matter what, encourage and praise positive behavior when you can and try to spend time as a family. It gets better!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Houston on

first of all, you can't say that they think it unless they are saying it aloud. operate with facts and not assumptions. secondly, what you are describing is just kids, playing one parenting environment against another.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Chicago on

My father's second wife likes me, but I can not stand her in any shape or form. She does not understand to mind her own and that her God is NOT my God, my God does not tell an 11yr old that wearing a crusifix (sp) even though you are not saved is a sin when the second most important woman in her life gave it to her for a going away gift. So for me and my distain for my father's second wife that will stay for the duration of my life.

1 mom found this helpful
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