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I need help! I have been married for almost 5 years and the last 2 years have been very challenging when it comes to being a step mom. The oldest teenager does not respect me at all an my husband is not backing me up. I fear the younger girl will follow suit since she see's not consequences for actions. My husband and I are at the point of either making it or breaking it, I can't see myself living this way much longer.

How do I get my husband to back me up and enforce the girls to respect me?

Answer Question

Asked by Anonymous at 11:55 PM on Feb. 16, 2009 in Teens (13-17)

Answers (8)
  • You two need marital counseling. This is too complicated to seek answers here. Teen age girls are especially hard. Personally I do not think that your husband should be backing you. He should be setting the rules for his daughters, of course his rules should include respect of you. When you are enforcing his rules it allows you to have a better relationship with them. You two need to go to counseling, set a plan there, and come home united. A counselor will tell you both these things and how to go about them. United against the teen years is the key word here. Most biological parents have the hardest time with the teen years.

    I am pulling for you, get the counselor, who can be there for you when you need support and help. And also help your husband with ideas of how to set rules, limits and punishments for his daughters that you will help enforce. Step-parenting is hard you have your work cut out for you. Get support today

    Answer by Anonymous at 2:57 AM on Feb. 17, 2009

  • If your husband does not begin to stand up for you, then this marriage will never work. Never. He has got to begin to take up for you and demand that his children treat you with respect as an adult. Its not likely they respect him very much either. Hes probably afraid of them not loving or liking him so he does nothing. I would sit him down, share this fact with him and let him know that you are willing to get help if hes willing, but this has got to stop. My husband is my kids father and he told them that if he ever heard them speak to me disrespectfully, they will be having a bad day. He does not tolerate it at all. I know its harder with a blended family, but its the foundation in your home. I am very sorry for your situation. I feel for you. I have a friend in a similar situation.

    Answer by momofsaee at 2:31 PM on Feb. 17, 2009

  • And you shouldn't continue living with a man that won't insist that you are treated with respect. As much as you won't want to hear this, the truth is that there isn't any hope for you as a couple if you can't sit your man down and explain the situation to him and have him jump to make sure that whole family is operating under the same rules for both parents. When he allows the children to disrespect you it's the same as if he were doing it himself. If he can't or won't shape up, then you have to stand up for yourself. You are right to be worried and wish you luck.


    Answer by Cin53 at 2:48 PM on Feb. 17, 2009

  • Hi, I am also a stepmom to 4. They are ages 23, 21, 16 and 13. The youngest was 4 when we got married 8 years ago. The oldest is a boy and he gave me sooo much trouble, he never did accept me and he did everything in his power to instigate problems with his siblings. It took me at least 5 years to get my hubby to realize that we needed to be a team and his kids needed to know that. Once he finally started putting his foot down and making these kids respect me things started changing for the better. The only way I got him to step up was to tell him that "I will do it if you don't"! Yep! I threatened him that I would spank his little brats and start giving them the punishment that they deserved. Hah! He knew that would cause so many problems in so many areas. You and your hubby are a team and the kids need to know that, they need to know that he will back you up.

    Answer by Ilovemy5joys at 12:29 AM on Feb. 18, 2009

  • Sorry this is so long....We also went to counseling at least 3 different times in the last 8 years. If he doesn't agree to go to counseling then I would start looking at other options. :(

    Answer by Ilovemy5joys at 12:32 AM on Feb. 18, 2009

  • your husband needs to understand that he has to provide a united front with you or she'll walk all over both of you-i had to threaten to leave before my husband got the message(I'M NOT SUGGESTING THAT)-unfortunately most fathers feel guilty for having divorced the other parent(thus breaking up the family)so they give their kida a free pass to do what they want by never correcting them-try talking to him-maybe you will have to issue an ultimatum(i don't want to suggest it and have it go wrong but I feel for ya there is no worse position than the one your in

    Answer by LoriAnn723 at 3:35 AM on Feb. 18, 2009

  • I agree with most of everything that has been written here, but I especially like what the first resonder said. It is important that your husband and you define the expectations together, but then, your husband needs to enforce the rules.

    your greatest asset here is your ability to act as a team, whether the kids are bio or step. This won't be easy, but it is the most important step that you can take.

    Angie Blackwell, The Parenting Coach

    Answer by familycoach4U at 3:54 AM on Feb. 20, 2009

  • I have a blended family,my two girls and a stepson were getting married in june,but have been living together for 5 1/2 yrs.It is our home and we back each other we have house rules,all the kids have the same rules.his kid my kids,doesnt matter.yes i have more say for my girls and vice ersa.but we agree on the rules as a family.

    Answer by lifeisgood176 at 11:46 AM on Feb. 20, 2009

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