I Can Not Stand My Stepchildren!

Dear Dr. Coleman,

What do you do when you don’t like the kids of the man you married? I married a great guy 3 years ago, love of my life, but his kids drive me up the wall. They’re disrespectful to him (not to me yet, but I’m sure that’s coming), demanding, and spoiled. Worse, I just don’t like them as people. They’ll all be out of the home in about 5 years but that’s 5 years too long. How do I survive?

Dear Reader,

This is a common complaint that I get from stepparents. There is a lot to tease apart here:

  • Many stepmothers feel guilty that they don’t like their stepchildren. Most women are raised to feel like they’re going to love being a mother and therefore feel confused and self-critical when those feelings don’t spring eternal for their husband’s kids. Guilt and self-criticism are hard on oneself and hard on a marriage. Work to accept that you feel the way that you feel and that that doesn’t make you a bad person.
  • Sometimes stepchildren are difficult or unlikable as an expression of loyalty to the parent who isn’t in the home. Their guilt about being close to you may make them feel more conflicted about having you like them and of them liking you. Assume it will take some time for a relationship to develop. Maybe years. Don’t assume that it will go quickly.
  • While you don’t have to love them, you should try to find some common ground with them. Not only is this important for them, it is key to your having a life in a blended family.  So, see if you can find something, ANYTHING, that you might have in common. It doesn’t have to be anything fancy: a TV show, a musical artist, a love of a certain kind of food, an author–just some toehold of similarity and compatibility to build a relationship from.
  • Let your husband know what bothers you the most about their behavior. If they hog the television, talk on the cell phone during dinner, talk over each other all of the time, ask him to step in more. But don’t assume that he can change all of their behavior to accommodate you. If he can change even some of their behavior, that’s a good thing. However, if they behave in ways that are directly disrespectful to you, it’s better for you to set limits with them yourself in the same way that you would set limits with anyone else.
This entry was posted in Articles and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Post a comment or leave a trackback: Trackback URL.

112 Comments

  1. Mimi
    Posted October 20, 2014 at 9:00 pm | Permalink

    I’m so disgusted with my Stepson. He steals, lies, breaks things . I feel zero love fir him. I want him back with his bio mom. It is where he belongs. They are just alike, liars, and thieves. I have tried. To the point of complete exhaustion with him.
    He’s ADHD , which I am calling BS on. He is bipolar, and moody.
    I don’t know how to convince m husband to just let him go to his mother.
    This will save the rest of our family.

  2. Posted October 10, 2014 at 6:45 pm | Permalink

    Afirman que cuando se efectúa un cambio en el algoritmo muchas webs empiezan a temblar y en ocasiones supone un tsunami en la red.

    la web es anárquica y casi incontrolable, Google esta tratando
    de poner orden a través de sus animales de Zoo.
    Ahora, os voy a contar lo que realmente es el posicionamiento
    seo natural.

  3. Posted October 10, 2014 at 1:18 am | Permalink

    First off I want to say terrific blog! I had a
    quick question in which I’d like to ask if you do not
    mind. I was curious to find out how you center yourself and clear your thoughts before writing.

    I have had a difficult time clearing my thoughts in getting
    my ideas out. I truly do take pleasure in writing but it just seems like
    the first 10 to 15 minutes tend to be wasted
    just trying to figure out how to begin. Any recommendations
    or hints? Thanks!

  4. Posted September 20, 2014 at 7:25 pm | Permalink

    It’s an awesome paragraph in support of all the internet users;
    they will take advantage from it I am sure.

  5. selena
    Posted June 18, 2014 at 11:06 pm | Permalink

    I WANT TO THANK THE GREAT MAN THAT WAS ABLE TO BRING BACK MY LOVER WITHIN 24HOURS. IF YOU WANT YOUR LOVER BACK CONTACT THIS GREAT MAN WHOSE NAME IS DR. yekini ON yekinipoweroflovetemple@hotmail.comAND I PROMISE YOU THAT YOUR LOVER WILL RUN BACK TO YOU ASKING YOU FOR FORGIVEN

Post a Comment

Your email is never published nor shared.

You may use these HTML tags and attributes <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

  • NEW SERIES FOR ESTRANGED PARENTS BEGINS

    Tuesday OCT 21ST 5:30 PST

    MORE INFOREGISTER