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Step-parenting advice, anyone???

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

If anyone has any great advice on being a step-parent when the going gets rough, I'd love to hear it. I'm at the end of my tether with trying to deal with the hurt of an adult son who is constantly late, doesn't show or changes his plans at the last minute when events are scheduled around his availability.

My selfish small person wants to dig in her heels and refuse to plan anything else EVER around his schedule or him coming ... sigh ... but my reasonable side says that isn't the right answer. I'm so frustrated that I am not able to think straight about the situation.

If you've "been there and done that" already, I could use some wisdom and guidance. Just because he is treating us like we aren't important to him doesn't mean that we should do that to him. Sigh ... it is very tempting though ...
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  • SHARON10002
    **Disclaimer - I am not a stepparent.**

    I agree with ALL that has been said here. Sounds like he is a little narcissistic, and I'm sure he's also pushing some buttons. He's probably become so used to you scheduling things to revolve around him, that he's not too worried about it.

    It also smacks of disrespect and disregard for you, the other guests, and your schedule. Don't let his antics get to you. Make your plans that accommodate you and your guests, and be sure to ENJOY yourself, and those who were respectful enough of your time and effort to be there on time, and are wanting to enjoy themselves and your company!
    1909 days ago

    It is difficult to deal with, but I would just let him know that all other
    family members are going to be at (such and such place at this time)
    and you hope he will be able to join in the party??? celebration???
    reunion?? whatever event.............. it then becomes his choice as to
    whether he will attend....and be on time or just not show.

    Eventually, he will see that the world is not revolving around his presence
    at whatever event............and if he says anything, well, we let you know
    this event was taking place...sorry you missed it....had great food and lots
    of fun was had by all........

    I think it is an attention getter, personally, and he is getting something
    from his behavior by yours/your husbands' reaction........
    I had to deal with this from a family member before, and in his case it
    was deliberate and meant to manipulate.....it backfired on this person....

    You can handle this BEAMS..............smile and tell him how sorry ya'll were
    he was unable to come..... emoticon
    1909 days ago
    I also agree with Julee's words!
    1910 days ago
    Ok, I'm not a step parent either, but I LOVE JULEE_D's advice. DON"T plan the event around his availability. Let him know that THIS is when (fill in the event) is planned. I think that's the only way to handle it. If the majority are comfortable with that, then that's how it should remain.

    I don't blame you for being frustrated. I would be too!!!

    It's not the same exactly, but I used to try to accomodate my brother's schedule but after several no shows or being late . . . that was it.I do what accomodates the majority.

    HUGS and good luck.
    1910 days ago
  • _JULEE_
    I'm not a 'step parent'. However, I am a parent and have had some similar dealings with my own children and relatives.

    My advice:

    1. Recognize that he's going to be who he is right now and don't get upset. The more upset you allow yourself to get, the more power you're giving him. Not saying that he WANTS to make you upset, but don't necessarily put it past him, either...

    2. Make your arrangements and let him know. If he says "I can't make it at that time and you should have know that" (or something similar), DO NOT lose your cool, give a response similar to "Well, this arrangement IS convenient to us, maybe you can make it next time."

    The more you accommodate, fight and fuss, the more he's going to 'get it' that he's pulling your strings and the more he's going to DO to pull them. The less of a reaction he gets from you, the less pulling he's likely to do.

    Some kids (yes, even the 20 something 'kids') go through phases where pulling their parents' and other loved ones' strings is like a pastime...

    All the best emoticon

    1910 days ago

    Comment edited on: 12/26/2012 8:13:13 PM
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