Bio Mom issues.

I have an 11 yr old step daughter. Been apart of her life for two years. Recently she’s discovering her mom is not really interested in her personally, just in having occasional updates on her life and pictures to post to Facebook so she can pretend to be involved and a good mother. 11yr old for the most part feels pretty uninterested in her mom, and whines a lot about how ironic it is that every time she calls her mom, her moms phone is dying. Or how her son is sick. Although she brushes it off carelessly, I worry this is giving her more trouble then she lets on. Yet, she still calls her, sends her updates, sends her pictures and even gets excited to see her (if and when she does come.) It’s been over a year since then. But, holidays are coming. She’ll be trying soon. I’m worried that this is affecting her deeper then she lets on, and I don’t understand why she keeps going back. How do I comfort her, or make this vicious pattern stop? Should I even try to stop it? Not sure what to do, I hope I don’t sound like a terrible step mom, I haven’t done anything yet, but I’m getting more and more involved. She calls me mom. I’m getting more nervous about this. Please help!!

  • Jade
    Oct 11, 2018

    That's so tough. It sounds like she is really lucky to have a stepmom who worries for her and wants good things for her! Kids really need the security of knowing they are loved unconditionally. It sounds as though she is seeking out and hoping for that kind of love from her biological mom, which is only natural! My advice would be to give her as much reassurance as you can that you love her no matter what. Spend one on one time with her, give her words of affirmation. Fill her up as much as you can. It also might be a good idea to look into some counseling for her, to help her understand that the problem lies with her biological mom and not her. Hope this helps!

  • Jessica
    Oct 11, 2018

    What a great step mama you are. Please, No matter what do not talk badly about her mom in front of her. This can be extremely damaging. Encourage her to continue doing what makes her happy (sending pics, calling her, whatever) and being available when her mom disappoints her. She WILL realize when she’s older who was there and who wasn’t. It’s got to be so hard to see someone you love get so disappointed but this is a touchy subject in which unfortunately you have no power in. Can your husband mention it to his ex that she is upsetting her daughter? I would also keep a log of everything for the courts in case you guys want to reevaluate custody in the future. This is all just advice based on what a shitty Dad I had while growing up but my Mom and Stepdad really didn’t help when they knocked him and validated my feelings about him when I was little, I would have figured it out eventually and the illusion of having a “good dad” when I was little was more important then knowing the truth. Good luck girly, know you are doing great!

  • Anonymous
    Oct 11, 2018

    I’d ask her about her feelings about it in an open ended way. Not “does this make you feel bad?” because I wouldn’t want to project any emotions on to her. But as someone whose father wasn’t around, she DOES have feelings about it. I never brought it up with my mom because I didn’t want to make her feel bad and she decided to wait for me to bring it up. So I basically sat with all those issues until I was an adult. And she will keep going back because it’s her mom. As someone who also has a mom who really didn’t want to be a mom, you’ll always want whatever shred of love they have to offer you...even if it’s self serving 🙄I wouldn’t say anything negative about her mom EVER because that’s her journey to find her limits as to what she’s willing to deal with and you pushing her in one direction or the other might push the two of you apart. And you are vitally important! I’d just let her know you’re always there to listen, good or bad, and won’t offer advice unless asked. My best friend always asks “are we bitching or fixing”? And I love that she asks this before trying to give advice. Sometimes it’s nice to just have someone to vent to that just accepts the emotions.

  • Jenny
    Oct 14, 2018

    The only behavior you can control is your own. Love her and be the mom she needs and deserves and the rest will fall into place. As she grows and becomes more mature, she will work out her relationship with her biological mother on her own. She is just lucky to have you.

  • RV
    Apr 29

    I have the same situation. And it’s terrible to not know how to go about talking to stepdaughter about it. I know she’s hurting after a situation where her mother promised she was going to visit her and just like the last time, (which was 5-6 years ago), she didn’t show when she said she would. Idk the details, but I presume my stepdaughter, now being 15 years old, maybe just lashed out at her mom for not keeping her promise. That resulted in the mom telling my stepdaughter that she “was dead to her”. Idk how a mother, any parent, could say that to their child, who they haven’t seen in years... The thing right now that I’m having trouble with is how to talk to her about it, without seeming to be nosy, or “all up in her business.” She’s not the type to talk openly about anything that she may be going through, and she hasn’t told me about this incident, so idk how to tell her that she’s old enough to set boundaries for anyone she may want or not want in her life. I’ve told her and her brother, (also my stepson), that they can come to me for anything, or nothing. If they have a school/homework question, or want to talk about their friends, or just talk about nothing, that I am here for them, and always will be. It breaks my heart not knowing what to do.