I know this may be long, but I need to talk to someone, and I don't know where to turn.
Tonight my 11 yr old and 15 yr old step-daughters were fighting. I've been with the family since they were 7 and 11. The younger daughter very much thinks of me as her other mom. The older has gradually accepted me and our relationships started off rocky but has been pretty good lately. We also have a new baby--4 months old, my birth daughter. Yesterday she had her vaccines and today she had a fever and was in pain and it was a really hard day. So, tonight, my 11 yr old and 15 yr old (step)daughters were fighting. I went to try to break it up. I was carrying the baby. She got hurt. The 11 yr old accidentally hit her (not hard, but where her sores from vaccines were). Then she slammed the bathroom door and it hit the baby's head. She is okay, but she screamed and has a small welt on her head. I will NOT try to break up a fight between those girls again. If they rip each other's hair out, so be it. My wife says they aren't allowed to hold baby for a while. Natural consequence. But my gut reaction was intense. My instinct was to pack a bag and go stay with a friend, and I had thoughts and feelings like maybe this is it, maybe I'm done, maybe we can't stay here. I don't know where we'd go. Anyhow, they are my family. I can't talk about this with any friends because they wouldn't understand that. I don't want to tell any friends because I would just feel like I had to defend the girls, and I can't right now. I don't even know what I want to do. Stay or go. Ultimately, I want to stay. But right now, I want to GO. And I can't think of anyone I know who would understand. That's why I'm posting here. I'm just praying someone will read this who can understand. For the first time ever I had a glimpse of "what if this didn't work out," but I am committed to them. I love them. I love my wife. And she's a good mom to my little baby. I am committed to them and I have to stay, but it can't be at the cost of my daughter. Maybe I'm still overreacting, because I'm still having really high emotions. After the door slamming and the baby getting hurt, the 15 yr old was pounding on the bathroom door, and I told her to stop and she went on a rant of "Go to Hell I fucking hate you you're a fucking retard you're not my mom you can't parent me" blah blah blah blah blah and slammed her door. That was it. Then my wife came home and I gave her the baby and left for about five minutes trying to think because I was shaking from adrenalin. The baby is okay. The girls are okay. But I am feeling uncertain for the first time.