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Old December 25th, 2013, 10:09 PM
thr thr is offline
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new step family

Question our new step family is going through a little trouble. we have been togerter almost 2 years and married for 1 of those years. We did not live together before we were married. we both have a strong faith and are on the same page when it comes to spiritual matters. We are having problems with my children and my new wife. At first they were getting along great but now my children are angry and not wanting to come over and if they do tention is in the air. My wife tends to be more of a control/perfectionist and I am a little bit layed back almost a push over. We have decided to let me take over the disipline and she will take a step back and I will try to be a little bit more stern with the kids.
I think this is a great idea but whhere is see a problem is some of the thing I tolally do not find a problem she does. Any advice where how we determine what we will focus on? Or any insight at all into this situation.
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Old December 26th, 2013, 05:26 AM
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Re: new step family

First, have you considered family counseling for blended families? A counselor should be able to observe interactions and give strategies for dealing with specific behavior.

Second, these are YOUR children, so you are right to be the one doing the discipline and she is right to take a step back. Her job is to support you as you and the x coparent. I don't know if she feels jealous or left out. She should reflect on her concerns and work on them.

Third, you will not be on the same page with discipline because everyone has different parenting styles and views situations differently. For example, my DH and I have been married for 23 years and have 3 children together. I tend to be more authoritative and sometimes he thinks I'm too harsh. He doesn't think routine is important and sometimes I think he's too lax... But we've learned to NEVER disagree in front of the kids. We talk later and if an adjustment has to be made, we do it together.

Congratulations on your marriage!
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Old December 26th, 2013, 07:30 PM
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Re: new step family

Thanks for the input. My new wife does feel a little left out and wonders why the kids never show her much affection and gratitude. I assure her that it is an issue with one of my daughers and that I do not get much gratitude from her either, while my youngest son 12 constantly gives her hugs and he is very grateful.
my wife and I were talking to day and we think going forward one problem we will have is our different parenting ideas.
I also think she my DW exspects too much too fast. I told her it could take a long time to see responce to her from the kids we want to see.
sorry if the post is a little disjointed and confusing I am on a lunch break and typing fast. So thanks again for the input.
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Old December 26th, 2013, 08:44 PM
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Re: new step family

My husband and I sound like you and your wife. My husband and I defintely differ in the parenting skill department. My stepson is 10 by the way. I have known him since he was 3. I happen to be the tough one while hubby is more lax although he has become a bit tougher throughout the years. Just work together and know changes will not happen overnight. Try to see her point of view even though you may not agree completely. She can do the same...just remember although your wife needs attention too...you want to do your best raising respectful and appreciative children!
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Old December 26th, 2013, 09:19 PM
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Re: new step family

Karina thanks. We have decided to make our relationship of first importance. Our situation is a complex one she has a 22 year old special needs son who just came to live with us. He is a pretty good boy. He in some aspects is quite well advanced but on some things he acts vary young. He needs a lot of direction. He demands a lot of time on her part and she has to constantly watch out for what he is doing. Also he looses things like her phone. So she says this bleeds over to my children. She feels like she is conditoned to monitor everything.
too add tho this I have a 14 year old with aspergers syndrome. He is very hi functioning intalecually but lacks social graces. She has a hard time with him. And my 12 year old son who she thinks is the sweetst kid and is very helpful but has ADHD and is very active which stresses her out. She tends to give her son excuses because of his disabilty. She is good to my sons but is a little short with them. But I beleive we are onto somthing because she is going to take a backseat and let me deal with them. more later on the dinamics between my wto daughters and her.
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Old December 26th, 2013, 09:45 PM
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Re: new step family

Just wanted to chime in with support, thr. I also have a high functioning Asperger's kid. Hoping for the best for you and your wife.
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Old December 27th, 2013, 11:28 AM
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Re: new step family

Welcome thr. It sounds as though you have an awful lot to deal with together, and good on you for putting your marriage first. The last thing any of your kids need is to have an un-united front on the parental level!
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Old December 31st, 2013, 07:10 PM
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Re: new step family

Thanks to all of you have given advice and encouragment. This weekend was horrable on our house. My youngest daugter was caught talking about making the dog ruin my DW makeup, and them laguhing about it. My son made fun of her cooking. In retro spect I did not take it seriously enough. then after the kids went back to their mothers my wife called my son a brat and I got mad and left for work with out a word. We have made up and went out and had a nice dinner tonight. But my question is should I go back and punish my kids for the behavior or should I just tell them that is not acceptable?
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Old December 31st, 2013, 07:34 PM
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Re: new step family

Hard to say. Really, since your wife was the one "harmed" I might ask her input about what would make it right.

I think maybe what I'd do is sit them down and have a talk with them about how they must treat your wife, then have them write an apology note that they then must read to her.

It really is difficult to have to punish kids when you only see them part-time, but it really must be done.
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Old January 1st, 2014, 06:24 AM
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Re: new step family

I really like the apology; that is the real teaching moment.

I lean towards the teaching moments. I'm not sure about a punishment at this point because it can lead to more resentment and you want to build relationships. Instead, help them accept the consequences of their behavior. If DD was responsible for ruining DW's makeup, she should have to buy new makeup so she understands the cost of damaging another's property. DS should spend time in the kitchen, either cooking with DW, or doing the dishes so he understands the work put into meals.
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