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> Blending The Kids With The Parents, How do I blend the kids without frustrating the wife
frustratedfather
post Oct 21 2006, 09:14 PM
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Well here how the problem goes. I have just married a great lady with a daughter, I have twin girls. The girls are pretty close to the same age.

The problem is the daughter has been the center of her world for most of her life. But now that the family is blended she tries to over due everything so that she is still the center of attention. Mean while my twin girls are getting non of the attention. The twins have aceptted the extra child as a sister. however the single has not. I have tried everthing I think to try and help her understand. But no matter what i do it seem to go on deaf hears, I end up getting mad which then leads to the wife and I arguing about the sitution.

Need some help in understanding what to do.
Is there anybody that has some great insight to this problem

PLEASE HELP
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Glen
post Oct 22 2006, 07:54 AM
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Oh boy! Aren't you having fun! I'm not blending a family of my own, but have counseled and observed many. It depends on the age of the girls when you got married, whether the advice I'm going to give you will be very effective. From 0-7, you will have the best opportunity of blending them into kids that really consider each other family. From 8-12, a moderate opportunity. From 13 on...all bets are off, though, even then, some kids come around. After all...even if they agreed, to please their parent, it wasn't their idea to bring another family in. It disrupts every routine in their lives, so, kids have a right to act up for awhile...a year or so.
No matter the age, what the parents need to do is the same:
1. Without the kids present to lobby, agree on the rules of the house, and the rewards and punishment for not following the rules. If this takes you less than 2 full days, you've missed something.
2. Publish those rules on a bulletin board so everyone can see what they are.
3. Never disagree in front of the kids. If one parent says something, the other one must back them up.
4. Never agree with a child who is bad-mouthing the other parent.
5. Never negotiate with a child about the other parent.
6. Each parent should punish their own child or it should be done together.
7. As parents, each of you should find at least one night a month to "date" each of the kids (yes, that's 6 nights out of 30). This is their night to do what they want...your job is to listen, build their trust and build them up...make them feel special. This also changes the dynamics in the home for that night. If one tries to use the time to lobby against the other kids or parent, just let them know "we love our whole family" but this is her special time and change the subject.

If you two parents agree and hold to your rules consistently, you can expect about 3-6 months of hell, followed by a gradual jelling of everyone into a normal family (which includes arguments, manipulation and in-fighting but at a lower level).

One thing I noticed in your email. You seemed to be focused on the "only" child, as if she were the reason for all the problems. Don't allow yourslf to think the twins are innocent in the manipulation game. They're kids...manipulation is a survival skill. If you're going to survive as a family, both you and your wife must lead by eliminating all "us and them" thinking. It's "us and us"...period.

Hope this helps!
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Frustratedmom
post Jan 26 2007, 05:18 PM
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Frustratedfather, I understand a little where you are coming from. I have been engaged for two years. Why so long? We have three teenagers (14,14,15) and a ten year old between us. My son is fourteen and he seems to be the biggest obstacle we have, an only child. His kids and I get along great but my 'only' child is use to getting things his way. I don't think I spoiled him but he was just always the only child. Sept 2005 my son and I moved in to my fiances house. My son finally had a big bedroom and a big house and still was able to see his friends when I would run him to and from (which was a lot). Because we were not living in town anymore and he couldn't just walk outside and be with his friends he was MISERABLE and we all paid. I had my issues with the house also, you know it was 'his' house not 'ours' and the fact I was still paying for my house and my bills because we couldn't rent it out. By Jan 2006 we were moving out and I really thought I would lose the love of my life. Needless to say we are still together but once again in seperate houses. It is very hard. I have my house and he has his and we try to be one family under two roofs. I am so frustrated. I want us to be together but I don't want my son to be miserable but then I don't want him think that he will always get things his way. He is a great kid, all A's in school and never in trouble and a great athlete. I tried the other night to remind him that my fiance and I are still getting married and we will all live together again under one roof. Ever since then he has had a little bit of an attitude. To make matters worse my mother and his father's parents think I should do whatever makes Steven happy or what is best for him. So does that mean that I just don't matter. I don't know I just don't understand how he can be so miserable, it is not like he is neglected or abused. My son is my life and I want him to be happy but I also want him to understand that he won't always get things his way. He and my fiance don't really have a lot in common so there isn't much of a relationship there. My son has a very strong bond with my ex husband (his step dad not his real dad) and that bothers my fiance because he thinks that just is making it harder to blend him into our soon to be family. We have been together three years (after 11 years apart) and I just want to be his wife and have the family. My fiance is also having finace problems and I just want to help him and I know if we had our dual incomes and lived in one house it would help so much. I feel like I am fighting a losing battle because I feel like I need to make my son and his grandparents happy but then I'm not happy. At this point we are going to try and wait until the two boys (both 14) are 16 or so and then maybe get married because they will have their drivers license and maybe Steven won't feel so isolated out in the country. I don't know here is hoping for a miracle. It sure isn't easy when you are trying to keep everyone happy.
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Glen
post Jan 26 2007, 07:39 PM
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That's a hard one! Definitely a no-win situation.
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