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SD12's Wedding Jitters...What's My Role?

Posted by on Jul. 23, 2014 at 10:08 AM
  • 20 Replies

DF & I got engaged over the weekend, as I stated in my last post. I have a great relationship with all 4 of my skids. Last night DF wanted to talk to me about SD12. For a little background, SD12 is a near perfect child. She is sweet, funny, snuggly, and just very lovable. But she keeps her emotions to herself. If she is upset, she just wont talk.

So anyway, last night DF tells me that SD13 & SD12 knew about the engagement for months. Its all they could talk about, they cant wait for the wedding and that they even helped pick out my ring. But when DF went to drop the kids off at BMs the day before we were getting engaged, SD12 broke down into hysterics. Through her jibberish (as he called it) she said:

1. Im lazy and dont do enough around the house -- Reality: I work full time, take my 2 kids plus SS15 to all their ECs 5-6 days a week with muliple ECs on the same day, clean the entire house once a week, cook dinner half the week, and do everyone's laundry (thats laundry for 8 people!). But DF jokes and calls me lazy, because Im so obviously not, and I think this is where she might be getting that idea.

2. I boss them around -- Reality: Those werent her exact words but that was basically what she was trying to say. I only tell them what to do if DF isnt around, such as "come in and eat lunch" or "dad told me to have you guys clean your room." The only one I raise my voice to is SD9 and I only do that when she is speaking disrespectfully to me. I never ever interupt DF when he is telling that what to do. I let DF parent them 100%.

3. I favor SD13 -- Reality: Truth. Well, I dont favor her (as in she gets whatever she wants and screw everyone else), but I have an extremely close relationship with her. I let all my skids set the boundaries with our relationship. I didnt force myself on them. But SD13 is like my little puppy dog and tells me everything. SD12, while we do have a great relationship, I am probably the least close to her out of the 4.

And to move on....after crying to DF, SD12 went into her Moms and that night SD13 texts DF saying that SD12 is hysterical crying again because she is scared that DF isnt going to propose now and she wants us to get married.

DF & I were discussing this all last night and we think its more of a "Mom & Dad are never getting back together" issue and she is projecting that on to me. Which I totally get. DF wants me to kind of now "force" myself on to her a little bit more. I guess just like go out of my way to build our relationship, which even now is a good relationship, but it isnt at all like my relationship with SD13. And Im fine with doing this, but I just dont know how. I dont want her to feel like Im forcing it or only doing it because she was upset. How do I go about this?

Thank you & sorry its so long!

by on Jul. 23, 2014 at 10:08 AM
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Replies (1-10):
hopeful_leslie
by Member on Jul. 23, 2014 at 10:26 AM
Oh dear, ive walked these shoes,and im still walking them. I pray everything turns around for you guys. Its the "parents never getting back together" that got us to and we also have a family of 8. My bios are girl 13, and two boys 8 & 10 and three ss 14, 12, 6.. So we have to add hormones into that with almost half :/ like you i love my ss's like my own and pray its gets better on my end to. Good Luck Mama
baparrot2
by Platinum Member on Jul. 23, 2014 at 10:29 AM
1 mom liked this

Your husband is dumb. Force yourself on her? Yeah, that'll work. What is the opposite of "force"? Yeah...do that.

jlg12678
by Gold Member on Jul. 23, 2014 at 10:53 AM

I think I lucked out. My son was only three and my stepkids were five and seven when my dh and I married. My stepkids already experienced a pregnancy between bm and her then boyfriend, their engagement, and finally their marriage. Mom already moved on and they were excited about their dad and I. My son doesn't remember life prior to my husband and his stepmom being around so there aren't any issues there.

Your stepkids are older and it's possible they have had some sort of hope that mom and dad wouldn't move on. And they are teens/preteens. Add that together and you are likely to have some sort of drama. She likely feels out of place right now and since change is hard on kids she's expressing it as she knows how.

That being said, I would just keep being the way you are towards your sd. I wouldn't force yourself on her more but I'd treat her with the same love/kindness you did previously.

And your dh needs to stop calling you lazy. Even in jest when you say things like this in front of kids they often don't take it the same way or feel it's ok for them to say since their parent says it.

mrs.hartman12
by on Jul. 23, 2014 at 11:01 AM

Don't force yourself on her. Every time one of my parents new spouse of the moment tried that it backfired. 

HalfDozenKids06
by on Jul. 23, 2014 at 11:19 AM


Quoting baparrot2:

Your husband is dumb.

I love how you opened with this! I literally LOL'ed at my desk at the office!

Force yourself on her? Yeah, that'll work. What is the opposite of "force"? Yeah...do that.

I dont think that will work either which is why I've never done it. My relationships with them all happened very naturally and at their own pace. 

He wants me to I guess just go more out of my way to talk to her or sit with her. Maybe do something one on one. I dunno. I just really dont want her to think Im doing this because she got upset and not because I love her, if that makes sense? She is extremely quiet and laid back, so its not like SS15 who I live with everyday or SD13 & SD9 who are just always near me. SD13 because she chooses to be. And SD9 because she's always with DD8 and DS6 so I've taken on more of a "caretaker" role with because she's with my littles a lot so I do for her what I do for them.


HalfDozenKids06
by on Jul. 23, 2014 at 11:22 AM

Thank you! Im sure it will work out ok. She really is a good kid and I think hormones could possibly contribute to this as well. I just dont know how to make my relationship better with her when its already good. I dont know if she is jealous of my relationship with SD13? But you cant just force those things...

Quoting hopeful_leslie: Oh dear, ive walked these shoes,and im still walking them. I pray everything turns around for you guys. Its the "parents never getting back together" that got us to and we also have a family of 8. My bios are girl 13, and two boys 8 & 10 and three ss 14, 12, 6.. So we have to add hormones into that with almost half :/ like you i love my ss's like my own and pray its gets better on my end to. Good Luck Mama


oldproatthis
by Silver Member on Jul. 23, 2014 at 12:55 PM

Um...talk to her...My SD had an absolute meltdown panic at our wedding...she did fine...until the reception...and then it hit her...I was permanent...and she panicked...

Her real fear...not of mom and dad not getting back together...not not liking me...she liked me a lot...

Her real fear = change

She was simply completely unsure of what was to come in her life and there was now no going back...So I hugged her and took her aside for a talk...DH had already reassured her...but this is a step YOU can do too in your relationship...

You don't force her to crack like a nut...she's done that with dad...but you "put a toe in the door" to communicate...

You open a dialogue, preteen style "Hey, I heard things got pretty intense for you the other night about me and your dad getting engaged. I just want to talk, nothing big, OK?" and then you just tell her some honest truths "I love your dad, and I care about you kids a lot, I want to be a special family with all you guys, that's what I would like, me personally.' "I also know you kids are all really different personalities so you probably notice I'm kind of different with each of you kids, that's because of each of your unique personalities, OK?" "Just know, you can come to me any time with what YOU need from me and I will listen, I'm always open to hearing you, OK?" "I'm not coming in to throw your life into chaos, I really want to be a good addition so please just talk to me if something I'm doing offends you or makes you uncomfortable, I am still getting to know you and you're still getting to know me, lets just be really patient and forgiving and we'll do just fine." "Is there anything you want to talk to me about right now?" And let her have the floor...

I think opening the door...laying it out there and maintaining approachablility will help you 1. stay connected and 2. when you do hit stumbles with her (and you will) you will have the communication established to work through them...this approach was a Godsend for me and my SD.

jules2boys
by Gold Member on Jul. 23, 2014 at 1:01 PM

I don't think fiances idea for you and SD12 to spend some one on one time together is a BAD thing, but the 'forcing' it isn't right.  Is it possible for fiance to take all of the other kids for a couple of hours, and give you and SD12 some time, alone, to talk, or you take her somewhere she's very comfortable being (park, library, zoo, etc.?) and just spend some uninterrupted time with her, and see if you can get her to open up to the things she said.  I'm not talking about an every day thing, or even a once a week thing with her, but at least once, to see what's up?  I also think BF should do the same thing with her.  Perhaps she needs some reassurance that 'everything will be fine' AND that nothing will change.  I'm assuming here that the things you do NOW will continue after marriage when I say that. 

Maybe she wants more of a role in things, or perhaps she wants less?  She's also 12, hormone city, and not enough time with those hormones to recognize them or adapt to them.  :( 

Perhaps SD12 has changed some but doesn't know how to tell you, or BF, that she wants/needs more attention or something else needs to change for her.  She may not want more attention like SD13 gets, but she may feel left out/left behind since you do 'click' more with SD13, and she's feeling lost. 

Lastly, how is the relationship between BM and BF?  If it's open, maybe between BF and BM, they can reassure SD12 with the same words that all will be fine and then you can reiterate that as well. 

Poor girl.  :(  I hope she comes around sooner rather than later. 

MBanks524
by Silver Member on Jul. 23, 2014 at 1:07 PM

I would just sit down and talk to her about her concerns and reasurre her.  Make sure to spend some one on one quality time with her and let it happen naturally.  If you already have a great relationship it shouldn't be that hard to put forth more effort that is not just because she is upset.  

HalfDozenKids06
by on Jul. 23, 2014 at 1:07 PM

This is really great advice! Thank you!

The only thing Im worried about with her is the communication. Everyone would love to communicate with her (on this & other things), but when she is upset, she doesnt talk. It is so hard for her to get fer feelings into words. There have been major issues at her BMs house with their SF and when SD13 or DF or DF's neice would try and talk to SD12 about it, she would just break down and cry while refusing to say anything. For her to actually get words out of her mouth when speaking to DF about this is HUGE!! I would love to be able to sit and talk to her about this, but I dont know how she would mentally handle it.

Quoting oldproatthis:

Um...talk to her...My SD had an absolute meltdown panic at our wedding...she did fine...until the reception...and then it hit her...I was permanent...and she panicked...

Her real fear...not of mom and dad not getting back together...not not liking me...she liked me a lot...

Her real fear = change

She was simply completely unsure of what was to come in her life and there was now no going back...So I hugged her and took her aside for a talk...DH had already reassured her...but this is a step YOU can do too in your relationship...

You don't force her to crack like a nut...she's done that with dad...but you "put a toe in the door" to communicate...

You open a dialogue, preteen style "Hey, I heard things got pretty intense for you the other night about me and your dad getting engaged. I just want to talk, nothing big, OK?" and then you just tell her some honest truths "I love your dad, and I care about you kids a lot, I want to be a special family with all you guys, that's what I would like, me personally.' "I also know you kids are all really different personalities so you probably notice I'm kind of different with each of you kids, that's because of each of your unique personalities, OK?" "Just know, you can come to me any time with what YOU need from me and I will listen, I'm always open to hearing you, OK?" "I'm not coming in to throw your life into chaos, I really want to be a good addition so please just talk to me if something I'm doing offends you or makes you uncomfortable, I am still getting to know you and you're still getting to know me, lets just be really patient and forgiving and we'll do just fine." "Is there anything you want to talk to me about right now?" And let her have the floor...

I think opening the door...laying it out there and maintaining approachablility will help you 1. stay connected and 2. when you do hit stumbles with her (and you will) you will have the communication established to work through them...this approach was a Godsend for me and my SD.


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