Handling resentful stepson.....
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  1. #1

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    Default Handling resentful stepson.....

    I'm worried that my youngest stepson is going to become resentful of my daughter. He's 14 and she is only 8 months. He has been very spoiled by his mother and the boys' have relayed a few comments their mother has made about him no longer being the favorite at our house. (Comment isn't accurate since we don't play favorites at our house.) Before my daughter was born he had his own room, and in order to have a nursery we moved him into one of his older brother's (16 y/o) room (they share at their mom's) until his oldest brother can move out (Sept/Oct). Ever since he's been fighting with his brother (16 y/o) more often over nothing and he's been very snotty to both my husband and I. He's also made various comments about my daughter and then immediately after says 'just joking'. I don't think he'd physically hurt my daughter but I'm worried about any long term emotional damage his attitude could have on her.

    Any ideas on how to nip this behavior in the bud?

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    Registered User daughter of pearl's Avatar
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    Yikes! 14 year old boys are a treat at the best of times, but trying to get one to embrace a new baby is a challenge...is there anything special that he could contribute to taking care of his sister,

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    Registered User daughter of pearl's Avatar
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    Oops, hit send by mistake...

    , any talent he has that might help ie. is he good at music and could play for her, or good at woodworking and could maybe make a keepsake box for her...or if he is a good artist, he could do some sketches of her at various stages...

    While he is contributing he will bond with her, and it will take up his time so he is not fighting with his brothers...at the same time, amybe hubby could spend some one-on-one time with him to let him know that he is still special...

    Good luck!

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    Registered User angelbumpkin's Avatar
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    One on one time with either one of you. Maybe a movie date or a dinner or something. T
    Try get him involved in her care even if it is a little. May help with the bonding.
    Lots of luck and big hugs.

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    He's not that selfless. He's very selfish, and that attitude has always been fostered by his mother. Even before baby he had an attitude about being asked to stop whatever he was doing and help out. One-on-one 'your still special' time would probably make things worse because he equates it with a warped sense of entitlement.
    Last edited by txsun; 08-19-2008 at 12:12 AM.

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    McD
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    Quote Originally Posted by txsun View Post
    Before my daughter was born he had his own room, and in order to have a nursery we moved him into one of his older brother's (16 y/o) room (they share at their mom's) until his oldest brother can move out (Sept/Oct). Ever since he's been fighting with his brother (16 y/o) more often over nothing and he's been very snotty to both my husband and I.
    This is pretty normal, particularly in a 14 year old. He just went from his own space to a shared space, less privacy, which may have helped foster some of that 'resentment'. (I.e. Baby sister's here, now I'm just getting schlepped outta my room, yadda yadda). Plus, the closer proximity you have to someone, the more they annoy you. And siblings, especially that close together, are gonna fight. I would nip the nasty comments regarding the baby in the bud. Either flat out tell him: You will not speak about her this way, regardless of if you are joking or not. Or you could try and shame him into stopping: Man, it must make you feel about 10 feet tall to say such hateful things about a baby that can't even talk yet.

    Quote Originally Posted by txsun View Post
    One-on-one 'your still special' time would probably make things worse because he equates it with a warped sense of entitlement.
    Eh, as a child, he IS entitled to time with his parents. Kids need their parents and they do need one on one time and attention from them.

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    txsun,

    Personally I would keep him away from her until you are darn sure of what's going on......You need to let your DH know about all comments and if need be have your hubby have a meeting with his EX about it.....This situation would worry me!

    JMHO,
    leezza

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    Registered User hawkgirl's Avatar
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    I agree with everything above. I would add that if BioMom is using her relationship with your SS to get back at your husband, I suggest seeking some counseling for him to vent his feelings about the whole situation. He can talk to either a private counselor (if you have the insurance/$) or a counselor at school. This helps him vent in a healthy way, gives you some outside/nonpartisan feedback, and any reasonable counselor will help him see that change is part of life - what we do in the face of it is what matters.

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    I was 13/14 when my little sister (half sister) was born. Throughout the entire pregnancy I remember my Dad and Stepmom telling me about the baby, and how important it was that I be a good role model, etc, etc. By the time she came I was so excited I could hardly stand it. I still feel like I need to be a good role model for her and she's 16!

    Maybe if you can explain to both of your ss's how important their role is in being a good big brother and helping to protect little sister it might make them feel differently. Good luck to you I hope it all works out soon!

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    hummm, hows about a good swift kick in the pants followed immediately by "just joking" ??? I can't stand snotty kids.

    But in reality the more you play up to him the worse he will get. Attention is attention no matter what way it is obtained. I would ignore most of the bad behaviour, but of course if it gets serious then you'll have to get drastic on him. GOOD luck!

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    Registered User FrugalMomof3's Avatar
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    Well I am sure he is very jealous so maybe if you speak to him about it and maybe asking for his help or just making him involved more might just change him.

    I wish you the best of luck and let us know how things turn out.

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    Eh, as a child, he IS entitled to time with his parents. Kids need their parents and they do need one on one time and attention from them.
    Yes, you are right. With his blood parents! Not the step-parent.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Palooka View Post
    Yes, you are right. With his blood parents! Not the step-parent.
    The original suggestion was for the op's stepson to spend more time with his dad, who is his blood parent, to which o.p. replied it would give him a warped sense of entitlement.

    And I guess I'm of a different train of thought, I think the stepson is also entitled to one on one time with his step-mom. She's helping raise him and when she married the hubby she took on his kids too.

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    He feels probably feels displaced. Before, he had his own room. Then he had to give it up for the baby. And everybody is probably talking about the baby a lot. It may not even be a step-kid issue as much as a sibling issue. Lots of kids react this way when they have to give up their room for the new baby.

    In addition... you've said he's very selfish and he may be, but a lot of teenagers are. My concern is that he might be thinking that you don't like him and that you and his father will leave him out now that you "have your own family" (... not that I think you think this, just that that's how he might feel).

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    Sorry its taken me so long to respond, I have been having connection problems with my internet.

    Trust me, this kid is more selfish than most. It's not just selfishness but a snobby "I'm better/I don't have to" attitude as well. I think the fighting goes beyond 'close quarters' tension. The stepson in question goes out of his way to bait his brother into fights. They recently got into a fist fight because the younger one threatened to break the other one's new phone (no punishment at his mother's). He's also tried to get us to steal from his brothers by making up a story about how one of them owes him money and is refusing to pay him back and demanding that we make them pay him back.

    They do get to spend time with their dad. I just think that time spent for the expressed purpose of making him feel extra special just because there is a new baby isn't the healthiest course of action with him. His mother has already alienated her two oldest kids by making this one feel 'extra' special.

    And the baby hasn't impacted their lives much yet anyway. She isn't talked about non-stop, we rarely ask them to watch her, and for the most part, she's awake when they are not. They have been put on notice though that when she starts getting into things they need to keep their stuff out of reach. Anything she breaks because it was left out won't be replaced.

    Stefanie

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