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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Sorry if this is a bit rambling, I need to get this out. It's been a while since I've posted but it's nice to be back on MDC. So here's what's happening in our family. DD (13) is going through a hard time. She's showing signs of depression, sad and not knowing why, often tired, lack of motivation, wanting to be alone a lot. I understand that it's partly being 13 but it's getting to a point of concern. We've found a therapist and she starts going later this week.

My biggest struggle with this whole thing is that her relationship with DH is suffering. He has been her stepdad since she was 4. They have always been close and he loves her like his own. Now that the pressures of school and life are getting harder their relationship is often tense. He has an intense work ethic (I'm a bit more lax). His expectations of her are high as they should be, she's an honor student and has always done well in school.

The problem lately has been that DD feels that DH doesn't trust her to take care of what she has to do for school and succeed on her own. He is always on her about getting up earlier and making sure her alarm is set. Mornings are rushed and stressful. I agree that she has to get ready sooner but go about it differently. He tends to jump to "I'm not being respected" if she is the slightest bit snippy. DD says she feels like he's disappointed in her. DH says he feels disrespected and that he's a failed as a father. I feel like I'm being pulled between them, bring to keep everyone happy and respecting each others needs and feelings.

I have talked to the therapist about this and we will go in for some family work after she develops more of a trusting relationship with DD. As for my husband, whenever I mention new parenting strategies or ideas he gets really defensive. I have been the primary disciplinarian for most of DDs life. I am a believer in attachment parenting and I see how thee bond we had when she was small has payed off in the early teen years. I have tried to suggest books, looking online, talking to other fathers, but DH is resistant. We have never really talked about having a parenting style, its always been my deal and he just went along for the most part. That's no longer the case and I feel like were coming at the issue from completely different directions and not meeting anywhere near the middle.

I don't want to make him out as a tyrant. He is so loving and feels like the distance is due to his shortcomings as a father. He tries his best and Ive told him if he was a deadbeat he wouldn't care so much it hurts. If anyone has any thoughts my heart and mind is open. Thank you.
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