Anonymous

Remarried with two children

So I had my first child with my first husband and my second child with my current husband. My first child and my current husband have always butt heads since me and him got together. He has always been very respectful, compassionate and respectful of her feelings. But yet she treats him as second best even when he goes above and beyond to try to earn her love and respect. Any suggestions from anyone who has been in this situation?

  • B
    Feb 28

    Do they ever have time alone to do things and bond?

  • Julie
    Feb 28

    How old is she?? I’d give it time. My parents were married and stayed that way but they both had children from previous marriages. My half sibs all had really good relationships with their respective step parents but of course, their bio mom/Dad were their real parents. Also is your first husband in any way contributing to the problem? Does he have a wife or long term GF?? If so, how does your daughter treat her? Can you talk to her about this and try to see where she’s coming from??

  • Anonymous
    Feb 28

    Her father gets her every other weekend and one night a week for dinner per divorce decree. Well he barely spends time with her on the weekends he has her (he has a girlfriend and he’s an avid video gamer)and never sees her for the one night a week. But my husband will take her on dad daughter dates, to the movies, they hang out in her room and talk, play boardgames, and go outside and play.

  • Anonymous
    Feb 28

    She’s now 11. My parents divorced the same time when I was her age so I knew she was going to need some help coping. I took her to a counselor for over 2 years and it seemed to help but the counselor moved. Her fathers girlfriend has a child to whom consumes a lot of the mothers time (health issues) so when they all join up she seems to be left out so to speak. She is wanting that quality time with her father but doesn’t get it because she is having to share her time with everyone else. But when my husband tries to have an bond/relationship with her she shuts him down. I don’t get it.

  • Julie
    Feb 28

    Awww. How old is she?? That must be so hard. I think it’ll take time. Being young is so tough and trying to navigate feelings of sadness that her bio dad spends so little time and doesn’t seem to care, as well as a new Dad who took her dads place (obviously not but little kids see things differently). I don’t know. I’d try talking to her 1x1 if possible, see if she can verbalize her challenges she’s facing in accepting her stepfather as part of her life. Maybe that way you can work on the big picture. You never know, it may me a lot more than just him (something like she is sad that you have him and your new baby and is afraid she’ll be left out and her own dad doesn’t want to spend time with her either so she’s placing all her misguided resentment on your husband, for example).

  • Julie
    Feb 28

    Sorry I just saw the age!!!

  • Julie
    Feb 28

    Maybe look into finding a new counselor. The power of talking is so helpful. Also, 11 is just at the start of a really tough time for most kids!!! The tween years and just trying to fit in, so many emotions and hormones making their way in. Plus while this is not a knock on gaming, I truly hate when people are gamers!!! And I know that’s going to cause a lot of backlash but I see it as being a major energy suck. And it’s so hard for your daughter, she goes to see her bio dad every other week and he is playing games!?! Come on. Ugh. Sorry so judgey but it annoys me. I hope things start to turn around soon!! It’s great you’re trying to resolve this and find a way to a happier home!

  • Anonymous
    Feb 28

    I really appreciate your advice. I never thought of it as how you put “she’ll be left out...” part. I could see where she feels left out in both ways like since the baby requires more attention it’s about the same as playing video games. I still need to find that balance for the both of them. She loves her baby brother but she’s been my only for a long time and that I don’t think she was ready for that. She did act like this before we had our son as well it’s just become more obvious because she is going through her almost pubescent stage. The sassy ness, back talking, rolling eyes, scoffing, wanting to be in her room a lot, and having to be reminded about basic manners (please, thank you, and chew with your mouth closed). I don’t know if it’s just god testing me sometimes or just paying for my raising half the time! 🤦🏼‍♀️

  • Ivy
    Feb 28

    I think she may just really want her biological father’s affection and doesn’t know how to receive (or refuses) it from your husband because of that. I really vouch for some counseling as others have mentioned. It’s a lot to sort through during that age. When I was younger, I thought the world of my dad. I didn’t see his flaws, but I amplified my Mom’s a lot. I want to say I ignored his flaws, but I didn’t— I really was blind to it because I loved him so much. I mean I still do. My father was good to me. But I was the second daughter and am the spitting image of my mom. When my parents divorced, I hated my mom even more because I hated that I look like her. My situation was different than your daughter’s but even though I had a good dad, I see how I perceived him as perfect when he wasn’t. And it was always because of me being the second daughter, and struggling as a middle child... I had to work through a lot of things

  • Anonymous
    Feb 28

    Thank you Ivy. I appreciate your advice.

  • Sammyjo
    Mar 14

    She's probably just feels he's trying to replace her real father since she barely sees him

  • Anonymous
    Apr 09

    Thank you Sammyjo for your advice!