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Stepparenting. Ugh, I think I am Lady Trumaine! I don't know how to be a step parent. Is there such a thing as a "family coach"?

How do I become a step mom? I don't know where my boundaries are. Or even where to start. We have my 14 year old Step daugher 24/7. She doesn't want to spend time with her mom for various reasons. She needs a feminine direction though in a big way, but she is rude, self centered and selfish. She lacks any motivation and sense of responsibility. My husband doesn't "make" her do anything and I'm not sure why. I'm really resenting her and I don't know what to do. HELP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Asked by Luckiestmom118 at 12:00 AM on Oct. 25, 2008 in Teens (13-17)

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Answers (9)
  • Well, I think that by the simple fact of you asking this question, you will make a wonderful stepmother. It shows that you are interested and going to make the effort to give what it takes! Good for you! I would recommend family counseling for your whole family. I think they could provide you with the tools to make this family work. From my experience, it is tough.. don't try to be her friend, you need to let her know that she is welcome in your family, but your family has rules that need to be obeyed... I wish you the best of luck!

    Answer by pupmom at 12:19 AM on Oct. 25, 2008

  • My husband & I were going through this too. We finally got help by seeing a family therapist. She has helped us so much! I needed help being a stepparent to a teen as well & it's definitely not easy. We are now seeing our therapist on every 3rd Monday when it use to be every Monday. Our therapist hasn't even seen my stepson yet because she is working on me & my husbands communication skills & giving us tools to work together in our relationship & in our oldest.  We both now see how easy it can be to damage a relationship without the help. My husband didn't even have his son doing chores or to even help around the house unless he was paid. After we had a little boy 3 years ago, I knew that we had to change the rules before our oldest grew up without knowing how to do anything. I was seeing his dad enabling him & I needed my husband to understand how hard this was on me. Getting help is worth it all.


    Answer by onespecialmom at 12:38 AM on Oct. 25, 2008

  • I bekieve or not have the exact same issues only I have a step-son. He does not want to spend any time with his fateher and his mother allows him to be a monster towards his dad. Mind you on October 21,2008 until October 22,2008 my husband and I were in court because we have 50/50/ custody and mom was trying for primary therefore dad defended to keep his 50% because it is his honer and duty to help raise his son so he can have a positive male influence in his life. Judge ruled it remain 50/50


    Answer by realmom08 at 2:22 PM on Oct. 25, 2008

  • i think that you & she need to go out and get a pedicure toogether or do something girl together and talk. you need to form a friendship bond, but at the same time she needs to know the boundries between your friendship. tell her that you want to have a relationship with her, because when igot a stepmom i was 7 and it was a month after my mom died, and i grew up my hole life living with someone i hated and didnt get along with which made my child hood absolutly horrible.

    Answer by Anonymous at 5:56 PM on Oct. 25, 2008

  • I don't know how to answer this. I tried it for a few months and feel like an absolute failure! My step-daughter was 16 when her father and I started seeing each other. He set her down and told her what the deal was, and she was supportive of us getting together. I have three kids from my first marriage, and that marriage was abusive. Hence, troubled kids. They fight alot, and "J" couldn't handle it. She ended up moving in with her boyfriend when she turned 18, and there was nothing my husband could do about it. She seems to be doing well so far, but after saying she was looking forward to being a big sister and then throwing a fit when things didn't go her way, I feel like she's a spoiled brat.

    Answer by rhope4 at 7:59 PM on Oct. 25, 2008

  • I have a similar situation except my SD wants to be with her mom, her mom doesn't really want to be bothered. I have had to distance myself from the everyday responsibilities, remind myself that this is not my child & let her dad do the parenting. I try to stay out of much of her life, but do try to have 'us' time. I've decided that I love my DH way too much to have his daughter come between us (she's made it very clear she was looking forward to when it was just her & her dad, after his older daughter moved out). It has been hard for me, as I am a very hands on type of parent & love SD to pieces & see where her dad is lacking BUT it has worked! My secret: God's help.

    Answer by Grandma2Olivia at 9:30 AM on Oct. 26, 2008

  • I became a stepmom when my SS was 7 yrs. old. We COULD NOT get along. It was always, "You're not my Mom!" and all kinds of stuff like that. Whenever he was at our house, the tension was thick enough to cut with a knife. As he got older though, he was easier to talk to. My stepson is 15 yrs. old now and I love him terribly. He's a good kid who was just having a rough time with his mom and dad getting a divorce. He felt like I was standing in the way of them getting back together, which wasn't going to happen. Just don't give up on her and always make sure to include her in EVERYTHING. You love your DH and this is his child. Try to love her if for no other reason, because of that.

    Answer by Anonymous at 9:40 PM on Oct. 28, 2008

  • Been there, done that. It is very difficult if you make efforts to parent someone else's kid. You can try to build a relationship with them by doing fun things with them and talking to them about their interests but this does not work if the child is hell-bent on keeping you at a distance. Just talk to her father and let him know that it will not work for you two if you are not on the same page. The kids will play you against each other (believe me). If they see you are standing behind each other and that you have a healthy relationship, it will give them some stability. Also, it helps to take vacations at least once a year as a whole family. They need to know that you are not separate entities. If the child is determined not to give you a chance, there is not much you can do about it. If you are kind to them, they will probably come around later.

    Answer by Anonymous at 12:15 AM on Nov. 18, 2008

  • Holy crap, I think I could have written this exact question. My 14 year old step daughter lives with us and is self centered, defiant and heartless. I know teens are inherantly selfish, but this girl has always been competitive and insensetive. I'm going to go read your answers now, and hope I find some for me! Thanks for writing.

    Answer by rebekahC at 12:04 AM on Dec. 28, 2008

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