spinoff: discipline if you were a stepparent first, now a bio parent, too - Mothering Forums

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Old 06-05-2005, 02:54 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I posted this on the should stepparent discipline thread, too. When I first married dh and up until recently, I always put in my opinion and I felt it was respected but since he was the bioparent, I always felt he had the absolute last word. Like my vote counted .9 and his was 1.0, kwim? Lately, however, it is a bit of a problem since there are things that he and dss have always done together that I don't want my ds to be able to do when he is that age like play video games for hours, lots of pizza, etc. I think in the perfect world everything is consistant, but I moved into their house (5 years ago, btw) so of course I didn't start changing things, I respected their routines. Now, ds is almost 2, dss lives with us, and I'm not sure what to do. Any thoughts?
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Old 06-05-2005, 03:28 PM
 
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I have the same issue to some extent, though we have a big age difference, (DD is 16 mo) I can't really say much about DSS's (12 and 15) but I just say I really don't want DD eating much pizza, or soda or whatever it is. I think it must be very hard when you all live together though, and would try to come up with some kind of compromise that works for everyone. Sorry not to have more specific advice but I do think your views should count for DS, and also maybe you could find healthy substitutes and cut down on the pizza for example for everyone (or whatever it is) DSS 15 likes soda but when I made him banana smoothie he thought it was so good he went home and makes them!

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Old 06-06-2005, 08:43 PM
 
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Old 06-06-2005, 08:55 PM
 
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My step-son is 9, and my dd is 4. My daughter is not my SO's biochild, but his step-child.

Well, before I came along, my SO and step-son's way of life was 24/7 video games, fast food, no chores, 'forgetting' homework etc etc. Not too healthy, IMO, for any child, muchless my own.

So, new rules were set. Some in favor of their old way of life, and some in favor of my dd and I's old way of life. What we did was combined our lives to make one new family.

We're still working on it, and there are still alot of kinks to be worked out, but on a whole, when we got down to it and SO and I started becoming more consistant, the kids were great about it.

Like the last poster said, for me, it was also about letting go of some things that would've bugged me before, and same for my SO. We hjad to come together to raise our children... It's hard, but doable..
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Old 06-07-2005, 03:21 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Yeah, I know I have to give up some of my ideals. Dss has been great (especially since his mom had a baby too about a year ago so he has all sorts of new siblings and family members after years of being an only) but I think he is sensitve to change at this time, sensetive to losing more of the things that were comfortable to him. The discipline thread seemed to say that most people agree that a stepparent can't come in and start changing things, but if you plan to raise a family togther you can't just let everythng stay the way they were. We've been married for 5 years and it wasn't much of an issue till now that ds is 2 and wants everything his older brother (10) has. Some of it I can use his age to justify (he's too little to do that) but really, I don't want him to do these things when he's older either . slowwwww process. It is the video game thing that bothers me. Dh and dss play sooo much.
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Old 06-07-2005, 02:19 PM
 
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My DSD now 11.5 and DSS almost 10 are over every other weekend and most of what they do doesn't bother me except for the constant TV and video games. What does help is usually Dh is playing the video games with them so when he's tired of the games, the kids usually follow suit. There are days that those 2 will just play and play and play them : But there are weekends when they never even take them out.

What has helped create BALANCE is I have some ground rules that dh agreed with before the kids moved into my house and before we got married.

1) No TVs in the bedrooms including ours. That really limits TV watching and video games.

2) We have some sort of routine which usually does include pizza I really don't see it as a terribly unhealthy food within normal proportions. We have a family movie night as well, usually following the pizza. If we don't do pizza, we make popcorn on the stove.

3) My dh isn't a couch potato on the weekends which gives the kids a good example to follow. We all participate in chores that are age appropriate.

The older kids are now old enough to watch their younger brother for less than 2 hours at a time so dh and I often have them babysit while we run some errands. It really teaches them how important they are to ds They are also very involved to spending toddler time with him. They help teach him lots of good and of course bad things... like ds will now sit on the couch and pretend to play video games Thankfully, its just every other weekend... again balance is the key.

As for discipline, we don't have huge issues about behavior at our house. Mostly, if the kids are out of sorts, its usually because of some good reason and they are acting out. If we find out what's bothering them, they turn their attitudes around and they're normal again.

I did have some issues with backtalk once and dh 'solved' it with spanking which was YEARS ago and that helped set the stage for our NO SPANKING policy. Dh was a spanker and now is just a yeller... so one thing at a time. Since we pretty much have a routine the kids know what to expect and it keeps some sort of order. Sure I do have to remind the older kids to do their chores before having fun. Sometimes I need dh to back me up on that since he's more laid back about things and doesn't check to see if the kids did their chores... I don't like to nag though so I'm really big on following through. No chores = No video games.

Rhianna momma to ds #1 - 9 & ds #2 - born 10/22/2012

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Old 06-07-2005, 05:57 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Flor
Some of it I can use his age to justify (he's too little to do that) but really, I don't want him to do these things when he's older either . slowwwww process. It is the video game thing that bothers me. Dh and dss play sooo much.
Same *EXACT* thing for me! SO and dss would play vide games 24/7 if they could. It drives me nuts!

I also feel the same about how alot of the things I can still justify by age, (my dd is 4, and dss is 9), but I also don't want her doing when she IS his age anyway.... *sighs*

It's hard talking to SO cause then he thinks I'm degrading his parenting, and saying he's a bad father etc etc. I think he's a great father, and I think he did wonderful when his wife just up and left him and their son... It's just not the way I want to raise my kid, ya know? NOthing against him or his parenting, I just do things differently.

I've let go of alot of things, and he's let go of some, although if I'm honest, I feel like I've let go of more than he has, but that's me feeling petty...lol

I also agree that when you become a step-family things HAVE to change for all people involved, (including the children). You're adding new people to your family, and a whole new family dynamic is being created! Things WILL change and if you fight that, then it'll end in disaster.

This happened last year with my SO and myself. We moved in together, the 4 of us, but he was adament that NOTHING in his or his son's life should change. Only things for me and my daughter. Well, guess what? That lasted 17 days before we moved out.

We almost didn't try working on things either. But we did, and figured out that we BOTH needed to commit to change, and that our children would be better off for it, ya know?
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Old 06-07-2005, 06:39 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by MomBirthmomStepmom

It's hard talking to SO cause then he thinks I'm degrading his parenting, and saying he's a bad father etc etc. I think he's a great father, and I think he did wonderful when his wife just up and left him and their son... It's just not the way I want to raise my kid, ya know? NOthing against him or his parenting, I just do things differently.
Exactly. It is a sensitve issue since we never had that pre-kid time to figure out the ground rules before there were kids. I moved in to their bachelor pad (dss was 5 and a cute little bachelor ) with their video game/pizza/dirty bathroom atomsphere going. If dss was with us everyother weekend or something, it might be diffferent, too, but they had routines and I had to adjust. Sure, lots of things have changed (clean showers!) but others are still hanging around 5 years later. I understand that dss and his dad like to bond over their games, but I would make us cable tv/video game free if I could, but I guess I'm not single so I don't get to make all the decisions.
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Old 06-07-2005, 07:14 PM
 
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Hang in there! You've been doing this longer than I have..lol I know it's hard, (reallly really hard on those days where you just want to scream when you hear the video game system being turned on), but it CAN get better... One thing I think about, is that, I've added this other person to my life and my child's life, who, even though we might not always get along the best, and we're definately not mom/son by any means, he's good for us, and good in our lives. He's got bad habits, but then so does my daughter (like licking her hand and wiping her face with it... Don't ask, I have NO clue why that started or how to stop it! :LOL )...

I live with the bad habits, and take it one day at a time. Or try to anyway. Mostly, I just try and schedule the day so there is no feasible time to play video games..lol It's either school, chores, meal-times, time to play outside, or time when we're playing a family game etc. Then bedtime! lol Doesn't always work, but it helps some days.
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