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My Stepdaughter has finally won! I'm defeated.

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She's been living with us going on 3 years. In a nut shell, she has gotten away with every negative action without consequence. My husband leaves me to deal with every issue that she has presented us with, and believe me, it's probably worse than you know. Just found out that she is cutting herself and after searching her room and finding, yet, another journal about how unhappy she is in our home (with chores and rules). She was taken away from her bio mom because mom was using meth and had an undesirable boyfriend. Biomom calls every few months to stir things up(negative) which we've learned to handle very well. However, I am so scared about the road that is ahead of us now. I feel terrible for just wanting to leave, this will indeed ruin us financially and I am thinking of ending our marriage, honestly. I am getting her the serious help she needs but feel it will be a losing battle for us. As horrible and selfish as this this point, I don't want to do this!! This is affecting my physical and mental health at this point....

by on Mar. 4, 2013 at 5:46 AM
Replies (11-20):
by on Mar. 4, 2013 at 9:27 PM

Stepparents have no legal obligations to children. If this is how things have turned out, its called having her committed. Either dad can do it or the lovely state can. Have the state come and get her ( explain the situation)and that dear old dad could honestly careless

by Silver Member on Mar. 5, 2013 at 12:20 AM
Nothing will change, and I think you need to take care of yourself. It is very sad that this little girl is having these behaviors, but in all honesty, the only thing you have any control over is your reaction. This is why,IMO, you need to save yourself.
You have done what you can as far as getting her hooked up with counseling. You're not selfish, you're in survival mode.
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by Gold Member on Mar. 5, 2013 at 2:09 AM
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You have gotten some good advice from these other SMs so all I will add is this.  Remember how when you fly the flight attendant always tells you to put on your air mask first if there is an emergency before you put it on your child because you won't be any good to your child if you don't first take care of yourself?  Well, that is good advice for you too.  Take care of yourself.  Leave the house and take a break from the day-to-day stress.  A weekend isn't enough time to recharge and relax.  Stay with your family or a friend or in a hotel if you can afford it, etc.  Buy some new clothes or whatever else makes you feel good about yourself.  Before you go, write your SD a note and explain where you are going and why; let her know you love her and that you will return.  Make it clear to DH that he must step up and take care of his child.   Find counseling for DH and SD and for yourself if and when the time comes.  Don't bail on your marriage before doing everything you can.  After you clear your head, spend some quality time with SD away from the house and away from DH -- girl time -- without drama or your trying to talk about the problems.  Relax with her if you can.  Good luck.

by Member on Mar. 5, 2013 at 3:20 AM
ive been on both sides of this to some degree. ! have a problem with cutting have since i was a teenager. im in counseling now and have proper med mangement for my bipolar. a lot of people think that self harm is for attention and yes there are some that do it mainly for that its not always the case. i struggle with it because of my depression. the emotional pain gets so bad that i need to destract myself with the physical pain. cutting is often a severe sign that someone needs help. either counseling or meds. sometimes inpaitant treatment.
as for the SM side. we had to put my now 9yo SS in therapy due to suicidal thoughts, pictures, biting and hitting himself. he wasnt cutting yet but he was only 7. he has PTSD from the drama and pain his BM, whos an alcholic and drug user, caused him.

Its even harder when you are the one that has to handle the situation. so many people told me "oh let his father handle it" but he had no idea what to do and was completely overwhelmed with the guilt of having "allowed" BM to do this to his son.

have you been able to talk to dh about the situation and let him know how you are feeling? does he know you are close to leaving because you cant handle this? honestly i would get both her and you some counseling, or maybe family counseling, but she needs help. Does she know that you know about the cutting? sometimes straight out telling them you know and asking them why they do it and what can be done about can help.

I really hope you guys will be able to work this out for her sake and your sanity and marriage. this is a very delicate but dangerous path shes on. im praying that you will find the right answers and the strength needed to face these challenges. oh and for the record i see a counslor once a week in private session and between that a balanced meds i have not cut myself for 6 months now. so there is hope. good luck
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by on Mar. 5, 2013 at 4:40 AM

I am going to put in my two cents. My daughter who was 13 at the time was cutting and I had to put her in the hospital. In total we were in the hospital for 6 months on and off. I WANTED TO QUIT TOO and she is my bio child. So I get it. This was one of the if not the hardest time in my life. What your going through is no joke and the fact that your husband is dealing with this by burying his head in the sand is not great. If you do end up needing to hospitalize her it will make things better. I say this from experience. Not only does she get help but so does every one else in the family. Because all three of you are required to be in the recovery proccess. As far as the finacials go I won't lie it killed me. I still have hospital bills 4 years later, but she is such a happier healther child. I know she would have died with out a doubt in my life if we had not done this.  We are all SM here and that is one of the hardest jobs ever. I highly ecorage you to seek serious help for her and your family.

by New Member on Mar. 5, 2013 at 6:42 AM

Her dad needs to become involved and needs to start parenting her.  She needs help.  It is good that you are getting her help, but she needs her dad to be involved too.  You need him to be involved.  It is unfair that you have to shoulder this alone.

by on Mar. 5, 2013 at 6:53 AM
2 moms liked this

A girl whose life was ripped apart, who lost her mother to her mother's drug habbit, whose SM doesn't like her, and whose father ignores her, who is so depressed that she is cutting herself, has "won."

All while you've been focusing on "rules and chores."

Please send that little girl to foster care so someone will give her a loving home.

by Silver Member on Mar. 5, 2013 at 8:25 AM
1 mom liked this

It doesn't sound like she has won.  She is a shattered child.  Mom chose drugs over her and dad simply sounds uninvolved and sm wants to bicker with her over chores and rules.


by on Mar. 5, 2013 at 9:01 AM
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I do agree that SD needs some serious help.  If she doesn't, I'm afraid that this will lead to suicide attempts or drug abuse.  I suggest trying to check into your local Community Mental Health Clinic and get her into to see a psychiatrist immediately.  Her BD definitely needs to be play a big part in her future recovery, but for right now, you are probably more important to her than you realize.  Even though you are in a tough spot and you are drained emotionally, don't give up yet.  From a mom who has dealt with Major Depression.

by Silver Member on Mar. 5, 2013 at 10:33 AM

Kick your hubby's butt & tell him he needs to man up for his family!!!

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