Stepmom to 2 girls that are extremely immature

Tamara Brandhurst

Hello there

new to this but I am frustrated that I have 2 stepdaughters that are adults but the 24 yr old has the maturity of a 14 yr old

i have been with their dad for close to 20 yrs and we share a son

so my problem is every time we get together there is a problem and they (the girls) blame me... if i have a certain look it’s a problem if I join in the conversation it’s a problem I feel like there is nothing I can do that will ever be sufficient for the older of the 2 like I said she has a maturity of a 14 yr old and is always about drama the other one is 22 and is like the enforcer she will stand by her sister no matter what...

so my issue now is that the older is now lying about me to their dad my husband who will not get involved any longer so any advice on how to deal with this as Christmas is coming and not sure what to do any longer!!

Comments (6)
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Punctuation would make your post a lot easier to read.

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Tamara Brandhurst

Ok thanks sorry

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Step back, don't have them over for Christmas. If your husband insists, let him do it all- you go and do something else. Tell him you've been made to feel like an interloper for 20 years and you're officially over it.

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I agree with Colleen - don't have them over. If your husband insists, let him handle it and you go enjoy some quiet time by yourself.

Sounds like you've put up with this far too long. Time to stop letting them get to you and just remove yourself from the situation.

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It may be time to disengage...

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I agree that you shouldn't invite them over if you don't want to, but I don't think you, and you alone, should have to leave your own home. You've been married to your husband for 20 years. You guys need to act as a team. Have a talk with your husband about it and make a plan to be a team. Maybe tell the adult children that you have decided to go on a mini-vacation and won't be available for a family visit this Christmas. Lots of people do that. It's fun! Don't worry about any repurcusions at this time. It's your life. And you should enjoy your life with your husband. You said you share a son, so I presume he is younger than the adult daughters. If your son is in middle, junior, or high school, take him with you. It'll be really fun!

In my family, there are some difficult in-law, sibling, and step-sibling situations. Hubby and I discovered decades ago that the spouse who is most closely related to the "issue" person is the one who must do all communication with that "issue" person, and all other family members related to whatever the issue is. The spouse who is not related, says nothing, does nothing, emails nothing, texts nothing, does not send or respond to group texts, responds to nothing, tweets nothing, and calls no one. This is a strong, 20+ year pact between me and hubby, and it has gone a long way towards keeping peace within the family. There is a concept in physics called "potential energy." The potential energy of a really really bad situation could be unleashed if this pact doesn't hold in our family.

For example, if there is an issue with my horrible biological dad coming into town and wanting come hang out for hours at our house, I respond to that, say no, tell him he can't come, etc. I do not ask hubby to communicate with the dad. That way, hubby can remain neutral and respected to the in-laws, and any negative feelings are directed at me, and I can deal with that just fine. If his lovely (really lovely, I'm not saying lovely like she's horrible, she actually is lovely!) wife calls me and wants me to let them come, I don't expect my hubby to talk to her. I talk to her and I tell her she can come by anytime she wants but that the toxic dad cannot. Now, image if a spouse, my spouse, said any of those things to the dad or his wife. It's just not their place, and it makes the in-laws feel negative about both of us. There's no up-side. I can stand my ground for myself.

Another example, this past Thanksgiving there was a big "family meeting" at my mother in law's house about senior living discussions, her will, what to do about health issues, the house, etc, etc, etc. Hell, no way I'm going to be in that meeting; it would be inappropriate. I took the kids to the beach and an amusement park for the day. There would be absolutely no up-side to being in that discussion.

Putting a fire-wall like this also protects your relationship with your spouse because you guys can be a team, talk, share, discuss, even argue. But each then handles their own family stuff without the other chiming in.

When the topics of communcation are normal things that people talk about, I'm all in, but you have to know when to step back. AND when to step in. Your husband is the one that needs to step IN into this situation because this involves his daughters. If you decide to take a mini trip and be away at the holidays, it's is your husband that communicates that to them, no you. And you don't send or respond to any message unless it is just to say something nice.

First, make a plan with your husband on what you want to do this holiday. Stay in town, host people, go on a trip? Then HE, and HE alone, communicates your plan to the daughers. (It would be nice to talk to your son about it I think because he might have an opinion; he might think a trip would be fun).

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