I'm not sure where to put this, so I hope this is okay. We're a blended family, but this is more about the two kids that are related and grew up together from birth, and no so much about the "blending" part. Just a little background...I am an only child and my daughter was as well for the first 3 years of her life. We now live with my SO and my DSD and DSS live with us 50% of the time. DSD is 9, DSS is 7 and my DS is now 4. We've been together a year and generally they get along...actually better than we originally thought they would. However, I have NO experience with siblings having had none (my mom was an only as well) and my daughter is the only child I really have any experience with.
So I just want to know if this is normal or what the heck is going on. I've become very depressed lately watching my SOs kids and how they act, their attitudes, etc... I feel like if this is normal, no wonder society is run by greedy, mean people who only watch out for themselves. I know this sounds harsh, but I don't understand how little kids get this way. My daughter is not that way, but now I say YET because I wonder if it's just because she is younger and/or hasn't gone to school.
What I mean by this is it seems 90% of my SOs kids motivation is to either do whatever they can get away with (or even not get away with) to hurt the other kids physically or make them cry or to just do as little as possible while still getting the most out of a situation. They will do whatever they can to get everyone else to do things for them. They pretend they don't understand simple instructions (such as saying, "Please get your own water. We just sat down to eat, but you are capable of going to the sink and getting water yourself" to them and their response is, "I don't know what you mean. How can I get my own water?") and will scream and whine until someone just does it for them or sends them to their room, completely ruining an otherwise normal or happy situation even though I have SEEN them get water for themselves before. The water is just one of MANY examples. "Your shoes are upstairs, go get them and put them on please," is met with something like, "I don't know what you mean by upstairs. Where upstairs? You go get them," without them even going to look where shoes always are! Today, from the moment they got in the car from school they are poking and pushing each other, snatching things from each other (like hats off the other's head, toys, etc...). DSD will purposely tell us things she knows her brother wants to tell us (but he stutters so can't get it out fast enough) and she knows it will make him cry, so why do it CONSTANTLY? They refuse to pick up their toys, clothing, dishes, etc...unless there is something in it for them. We don't give them allowance and we do have a very loose reward system which is basically if they don't drive us nuts for a few hours in a row, we'll take them somewhere special. Granted, I have no idea how things are run at their mom's house, but we know mom is strict and would not allow any of this. Dad is more of a "softie" but he hates all this fighting too and will eventually blow up at them. I've tried talking to him about a more structured environment, but he's not really interested in that at this time because he wants dad's house to be the "fun" house, so he just let's them do whatever until he gets to the point of blowing up and screaming. Every day one of them does something just plain evil...by that I mean something to purposely hurt one of the other kids. DSS new thing is to do something and then while we're talking to him about it or reprimanding him, he is laughing at us and the situation and thinks the whole thing is funny.
Is this normal? Is this how siblings are all the time? I feel like they behave as if they have no empathy, sympathy or care in the world for anyone but themselves about 90% of the time. My 4 year old is NOT like that, but I see her starting to pick it up more and more as time goes on and it scares me. She is a very caring and loving child and does not like to hurt others on purpose or steal things. She's always been that little baby/toddler/kid that let someone snatch a toy out of her hand without making a fuss...she'd just go get another one. She's more possessive now of course, but I still don't see her saying or doing hurtful things and I don't want her to turn into that.
Am I over reacting? I know it's possible I just don't understand sibling rivalry stuff, but how do get some peace in my house at least some of the time? I love his kids and they are loving towards us, but it's gotten to the point where I am glad when they are going to mom's sometimes.