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How do you confront your spouse about their biochild when you feel something they have done is inappropriate?

We were at a family function over the weekend and my step daughter was there. She is 20 years old and we don't see her very often as we live in another state. I have often felt (and still do) that she thinks she is her fathers "little wife". While we were there this weekend, she sat down next to her father at the table and put her hand on his thigh like she was his wife/girlfriend. I find that inappropraite for her to do, however I am not sure how to confront my husband with it. I know he will instantly defend her and act as though I am making a big deal out of nothing and she was just showing affection, however that is not affection between a father and daughter in my book. Please give me your thoughts and suggestions.

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Asked by Anonymous at 12:19 PM on Mar. 29, 2010 in General Parenting

Answers (8)
  • Youre just going to have to say it to him like you said it here. Be blunt about it. Tell him you think that that kind of stuff is really inappropriate and other people seeing it may think its inappropriate as well and it makes you uncomfortable. Next time she visits, tell him to pay more attention to what she is doing and he should move her hand away,not making a scene out of it but just nonchalantly move it away.

    Answer by Anonymous at 12:23 PM on Mar. 29, 2010

  • Wow can you say JEALOUS? It's his leg not know. Kids touch parents. That's all it is. It's not like she was groping him and if the whole family was there and you were the only one offended by the action then it sounds like you are the one with the problem.

    Answer by Anonymous at 12:26 PM on Mar. 29, 2010

  • Ehh, I would think it's odd, too. I don't have that kind of relationship with my dad, but I don't think it's completely unheard of for some daughters to feel level of comfort with a father.

    I'd mention it to him that feel it's a little inappropriate and maybe suggest just holding hands with her or something instead. If he doesn't agree, well than at least you tried.

    All in all, there really isn't a lot of harm in the situation (as long as it does stay in solid lines of a father/daughter relationship). Even though it seems a little odd, it's not WRONG, ya know?

    Answer by mickstinator at 12:39 PM on Mar. 29, 2010

  • My son used to lay his head on my lap while he was going through chemo or lace his arm through mine with his other hand on my thigh. There was nothing to it just comfort for him.

    Answer by pinkdragon36 at 1:02 PM on Mar. 29, 2010

  • Personally I think you are overreacting in this particular incident.

    I don't think the right way to go about working on this issue is to 'confront him' about it being 'inappropriate'. That whole approach is setting up a very adversarial climate and it's more likely to cause an argument than any kind of resolution. Wait until you are not upset about any particular incident, and sit down with him and discuss the fact that some of the dynamics in their relationship make you uncomfortable. Because that is what it going on here, it is not totally absolutely wrong, it just makes you uncomfortable. If you want him to hear your piece, you also have to be willing to hear his piece. Go into this with a spirit of being willing to discuss this rationally and compromise and you will get better results.

    Answer by riotgrrl at 1:14 PM on Mar. 29, 2010

  • I think your are making a mountain out of a mole hill. Some fathers and daughters are close like that. If your husband has no issue with it then I would leave it alone.

    Answer by Anonymous at 1:22 PM on Mar. 29, 2010

  • I hate it when step parents are jealous of the kids

    Answer by Anonymous at 1:43 PM on Mar. 29, 2010

  • well, I think you may be reacting to the leg thing, just because it looks inappropriate to you, doesn't mean it's overall inappropriate. Why do you feel you need to say anything? you want behavior to stop that you don't care for?

    you didn't mention as to why you think she acts like her father's 'little wife' is there more to the story? how often do you see them? This could be a sign that things happened that were inappropriate in the past, but it doesn't prove it. Does she have sisters or cousins that you can ask about all this?

    so what behavior other than the leg makes you think she acts like the 'little wife?' I personally would need to hear more than just the leg thing.

    Answer by ItsMe89 at 2:22 PM on Mar. 29, 2010

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