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Old 07-24-2009, 10:33 AM
 
1 posts, read 5,452 times
Reputation: 10
Default My step-daughter doesn't accept my family

[FONT=Times New Roman]My husband is unwilling to address this issue with his daughter because he doesn’t want her to get upset. His daughter is 35 years old, married with two children and has a master's degree in nursing! What I have been told by my husband and his ex-wife is that their daughter is still upset over their divorceten years ago, therefore she is unwilling to “take on another family.” This is the reason they have given me for why she is unwilling to have a relationship with, or even to socialize with my two daughters, my son and other members of my family. My family members have reached out to her more than once, but she has continued to reject them. More than once, she has hurt their feelings AND mine by her repeated failure to even acknowledge their presence. I was especially upset with her when my husband insisted that I bring my son into her home and she pointedly ignored both of us. My son is mentally handicapped, he is not stupid. He sensed that he was not welcome in her home so he went to sit in the car. God gave me the same instincts of protectiveness toward my children that all mothers have. Can you imagine how you would feel if you took your children to someone’s home and they refused to acknowledge their presence? I have tried repeatedly to talk to my husband about this, but he refuses to talk to his daughter about it because she broke down and cried the last time he tried. We have been together six years, married two years and he still wants to spend every Christmas and Thanksgiving at his ex's house because it is what his kids want. I don't have a problem with his son and daughter-in-law who both treat me very nice. But planning things around what makes his daughter happy instead of considering me and my family is wearing me down, eating away at me and it needs to be solved. Any feedback is appreciated. . [/FONT]
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Old 07-24-2009, 10:40 AM
 
Location: Up above the world so high!
44,323 posts, read 54,771,183 times
Reputation: 37051
Quote:
Originally Posted by ogdowns View Post
My husband is unwilling to address this issue with his daughter because he doesn’t want her to get upset. His daughter is 35 years old, married with two children and has a master's degree in nursing! What I have been told by my husband and his ex-wife is that their daughter is still upset over their divorceten years ago, therefore she is unwilling to “take on another family.” This is the reason they have given me for why she is unwilling to have a relationship with, or even to socialize with my two daughters, my son and other members of my family. My family members have reached out to her more than once, but she has continued to reject them. More than once, she has hurt their feelings AND mine by her repeated failure to even acknowledge their presence. I was especially upset with her when my husband insisted that I bring my son into her home and she pointedly ignored both of us. My son is mentally handicapped, he is not stupid. He sensed that he was not welcome in her home so he went to sit in the car. God gave me the same instincts of protectiveness toward my children that all mothers have. Can you imagine how you would feel if you took your children to someone’s home and they refused to acknowledge their presence? I have tried repeatedly to talk to my husband about this, but he refuses to talk to his daughter about it because she broke down and cried the last time he tried. We have been together six years, married two years and he still wants to spend every Christmas and Thanksgiving at his ex's house because it is what his kids want. I don't have a problem with his son and daughter-in-law who both treat me very nice. But planning things around what makes his daughter happy instead of considering me and my family is wearing me down, eating away at me and it needs to be solved. Any feedback is appreciated. .

Now that you know where you stand you have a few decisions to make.

First of all, this grown woman has the right to decide who she will and won't care about - and sadly, she has decided you are a nobody in her life. Oh well! Quit trying to get to know her or get close to her, it is her loss and you can't MAKE her behave any differently. MOVE ON.

Secondly, do not go to her house again unless SHE personally were to invite you and make you feel welcome. Your husband will just need to go without you to any function he wants to attend.

Reconsider staying married to a man who would put his grown up child ahead of you and your marriage. I can understand how hard this daughters upset is for him to deal with, but he is doing her no favors by babying her at this point. He needs to grow a backbone and decide if he wants to spend his life being her whipping post OR having a partner wife to enrich his life.

You can wait for him to decide or you can decide you won't play second fiddle and move on.

Best of luck to you.
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Old 07-24-2009, 12:36 PM
 
Location: Tennessee
15,366 posts, read 14,246,705 times
Reputation: 21718
His daughter is a grown woman, not a child, but yet she continues to behave like a child.
I would INSIST on having Thanksgiving and Christmas at your house this year, with the invitations to all! If she chooses to exclude herself from your family, thats her decision.
Maybe one day she will grow up, and realize that her Dad is happy now with you. You are is wife, and thats just something that she needs to face on her own.
Personally, I would be extremely upset, if my husband wanted to spend the Holidays at his ex wifes house, for the sake "of the kids." Puleeze!!
That does not even make any sense, considering how long the two of you have been together..not to mention, that if they haven`t noticed...their "kids" are adults here, half grown.
Meh...I say stand up for what you think is right. Don`t just go along and be their punching bag. I`m sure they are getting a kick out of it.
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Old 07-24-2009, 12:48 PM
 
2,047 posts, read 5,510,290 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ogdowns View Post
We have been together six years, married two years and he still wants to spend every Christmas and Thanksgiving at his ex's house because it is what his kids want.
What about what you want? He is not showing any consideration for you, his wife.

Let him go to her house every Thanksgiving and Christmas. I wouldn't step foot in her house. I would put on my happy face and take an extended holiday with my kids to Hawaii.

O.K. here is another option. Have him go to her house every other year for Thanksgiving. The year he goes, you go visit your family. And as far as Christmas, tell him to go over Christmas eve to spend time with her. That leaves Christmas day for you and your family. Seems fair to me.

Last edited by Beth56; 07-24-2009 at 01:10 PM..
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Old 07-24-2009, 01:26 PM
 
Location: In my skin
8,036 posts, read 8,914,487 times
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Hmmm, tough situation. I think you both need to make some decisions but it starts with him. I would not tolerate being disrespected and I would not be happy with him leaving me alone on the holidays. I'd tell him to invite them over, but she had better respect you and yours in your home. If she can't find it in herself to do this, she can go elsewhere.

Your husband may not be able to force her to like you, but he can enforce his own boundaries in that you are his wife and she needs to accept that. More importantly, she is lacking respect for him with the way she is treating you and yours. He is lacking the nads to stand up for you and yours, who are now his family. If he doesn't start representing you, then you have to decide if this is the life and the man you want to devote yourself to. I couldn't do it.
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Old 07-24-2009, 01:53 PM
 
Location: NW. MO.
1,817 posts, read 3,665,494 times
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Oh haaaaayyylll no would there be holidays at the Ex's house.

Time for hubby's family to either cut the strings or get back together if they can't bear to be apart. I'm sorry but if he's THAT attached that he has to go to the ex's on Holiday's you might need to take a deeper look at this situation.

I would have gone for that exactly zero times. Oh and at 35, the daughter is a big girl and daddy can just let her come to terms with reality.

You are right it needs solved but the problem lies with hubby and his inability to move on.
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Old 07-24-2009, 02:24 PM
 
Location: Fresno, CA
314 posts, read 550,086 times
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Is your step-daughter a difficult person in other areas of her life or is her negative behavior related primarily to the break-up of her parents marriage? Divorce is very painful even for adult children.

If she isn't otherwise an unpleasant person, I feel sorry for her. The break-up of a family strikes at the very core of who a person is. The children, no matter their age, are powerless to intervene to save their intact family. For many people, the impact of this loss is devastating and lasting.

Yes she is an adult. And yes, many in her situation might be more accepting of the father's remarriage and open to some sort of relationship with his new spouse's family. But this isn't a given.

I know some responders will say she just needs to grow up and get over this. (Some counseling likely would be of help to her.)

You and your children may be genuinely fine people who had nothing to do with her parents break-up. She likely, though, had the hope that her parents would at some point reconcile. It may not have been realistic, but that is the fantasy that children (inluding adult children) of divorce often hold on to. Your marrying her father made that less likely. You may think of her as a step-dtr. with whom it would be nice to bond a relationship. But at this point, she is still feeling that you and your family are intruders.

You're aware of her feelings. I wouldn't intrude much into her life or go to her home which is like pouring salt into the still open wound.

Work on keeping your marriage good. You and your husband together should invite her family to your functions but just accept that they likely won't attend.

Holidays are tricky. You don't want to cut him off from his granchildren if his daughter chooses not to bring them to your home. If you live close to his ex-wife and get along with her, you might have Thanksgiving at your own home with your children and join his ex and children later for dessert and coffee.
You could open gifts with his grandchildren and then return home for your own Christmas celebration.

This has got to put your husband in a tough spot. His children will always be his children. Sometimes time changes these things (a stepchild's rejection). Sometimes not. Support your husband's continuing involvement with his own children. Make it easy for him to be involved with your children. Accept your step-daughter where she's at and don't expect or push for a relationship until and unless she makes overtures toward wanting this. Don't take her rejection personally. This has lots more to do with her pain and sense of loss and lots less to do with you and your family. Keep an open heart and your own hearth happy. Welcome her if and when she may be more receptive.

Best wishes.
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Old 07-24-2009, 02:46 PM
 
Location: Tennessee
15,366 posts, read 14,246,705 times
Reputation: 21718
They have been together for eight years.
I was in a situation like this before, and its not easy an position for your husband to be in, but he also has to realize that you are being hurt too, along with your kids. I think it would be great, if he could sit his 35 year old daughter down, and have a heart to heart talk with her about his past marriage to her Mother. She needs to find closure.
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Old 07-24-2009, 03:59 PM
 
5,108 posts, read 7,547,619 times
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She's a grown up, she gets to make her own decisions
let it go if she doesn't want a realtionship with you because that is her choice, and you can't make her be cordial

however it is HORRIBLE that the husband is still spending holidays with his ex-wife because his grown children demand it?!
That is something that you do NOT have to take. You are his wife, you are his family, and your needs MUST be taken into consideration and respected.

It is just NOT OK for a re-married man to be spending holidays with his ex-wife.
That is just NUTS

He can invite his children to spend time with you and him at your own house, or on vacation, or wherever, and it is up to them whether they come visit you. It is normal and natural when kids are grown to "take turns" on holidays visiting various sets of relatives and inlaws. That is reality. To put you his wife in a harmful hurtful situation is NOT OK at all.

It's one thing when the kids are 4 and 6 and 12, but he needs to get real, grown ups with inlaws and blended families take turns and move around visiting on the holidays. Sounds like his grown kids need to do a reality check too and drop the fantasy land of mommy and daddy getting back together. They're not teenagers, they're adults and need to start acting like it. Rotate years, take turns, split up the day. For one person to set all the rules is just controlling, manipulate, pushy, and inconsiderate.

Last edited by Tzaphkiel; 07-24-2009 at 04:09 PM..
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Old 07-24-2009, 05:37 PM
 
Location: Chicagoland
41,214 posts, read 24,168,566 times
Reputation: 6982
Quote:
My family members have reached out to her more than once, but she has continued to reject them. More than once, she has hurt their feelings AND mine by her repeated failure to even acknowledge their presence. I was especially upset with her when my husband insisted that I bring my son into her home and she pointedly ignored both of us.
Stop reaching out, stay away from her, don't allow her to reject you or your family, do not include her in any functions you have, do not go over to her house, pretend as if she does not exist. If your husband wants to go see her, he should go alone. DO NOT subject yourself or your children to her petty vindictiveness.

Don't be nasty about it, or mean, or emotional - don't let it come between you and your husband - just say no to being around her.
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