Advice re DD age 3.5 & bf - step parenting

(31 Posts)
BackAwayFatty Sat 02-Feb-13 23:24:59

1st time poster. Forgive me if I'm rambling.

Some background info ...
My bf & I are staying together part time & are looking to move in together.

My Xbf & I broke up before my DD was born so it's always been the two of us. There has been barely any contact with her Dad over the last 8 months.

Since my bf has been staying more, he has taken on a parenting role which I am more than happy with. My daughter says she loves him & seems to follow him around everywhere. Most of the time everything is great.

My DD can be a challenge at times (doesn't listen to bf, bully's her cousins - winds them up on purpose to get them in trouble/called my bf 16yo brother fat cause he wouldn't do as she told him, greedy - will eat more than an adult if allowed, attention seeking - pees herself on purpose.

My bf is the strict one out of us two. He feels I don't support him & stand united against my DD. We agree on how a child should be raised but when it comes to it I make excuses for DD's behaviour & feel bad that DD is getting a row. Maybe because i'm not used to seeing someone else discipline her? We end up arguing about how DD is behaving. He shouts/I cry.

Question
We need advice/tips on how to co-parent. Am I being unsupportive of him or is he too strict? Is this a challenge of parenting as a couple or is it the pressure of DD's behaviour?

All advice/stories from past experience welcome. Thanks in advance!

rootypig Wed 06-Feb-13 03:36:33

that sounds really positive, Fatty. good also that you have some idea of why she might be acting out (hope visitation with ex BF has been stopped?! confused)

best of luck!

rootypig Wed 06-Feb-13 03:57:06

also - thinking - new info about xBF possible abuse makes me even more certain that what she is asking for is love and reassurance. would try to be gentle with her even when disciplining if poss.

ThreeTomatoes Wed 06-Feb-13 06:50:57

OK so, even though I don't really go in for the reward/punishment thing, when dd was 2 we were having battles every day, always around something I needed her to do- change nappy, get dressed, put coat on.... in the end I gave in to a sticker chart, if she got all the stickers or a certain proportion of them (I've forgotten which) each day she got a chocolate at the end of the day. It worked wonders, I have to say, and transformed our relationship, the battles diminished and dd loved the sticker chart (and the chocolates! wink). So, sticker chart is a good start.

BUT, sorry to burst your bubble and i'm not sure if i'm reading too much into this, but I feel really uncomfortable about the reward for the stickers being your time or something fun with you/the three of you. You should be doing that anyway, not rewarding her behaviour with your time sad. It could also get confusing, because if you are planning on doing those sorts of fun stuff anyway (I hope you are/do!!), it'll be too confusing! If you aren't doing those sorts of things already, why not? and if not I think if you start spending that sort of time with her it'll go towards helping solve the problem anyway without even using stickers! For the sticker chart, I'd think of a different, specific reward and factor in that fun time regardless.

Sorry to hear about the ex-BF, that sounds awful sad. Your assessment of some of her behaviour being connected to that might well be true. Do still keep an eye for relations between her and your bf though, I still maintain that something's not right, or at the very least a little rushed, there. And let yourself be the judge of what's going on for your little girl, not him! Nobody knows dd as well as I do, and i'd imagine the same goes for you and your dd!

Good luck.

MerryCouthyMows Wed 06-Feb-13 07:24:19

Just because a child is advanced in one way, it does not mean that they have developed at an equal rate in all areas.

My DS1 is 10. Academically he is working at a 14/15yo's level. But when it comes to the emotional side of things, he reacts just like any other 10yo boy.

Just because she has the SPEECH of a 5yo, it does not mean that she can manage her emotions in the same way as a 5yo. She is 3.5yo. Treat her as such. Stop putting such pressure on her to behave like a 5yo when she is only 3.

BackAwayFatty Sat 18-May-13 00:14:05

Thought it would be nice to update :-)

We are good. I've got much better at supporting my BF on his role as a step-parent. My DD has adjusted to having him around & dotes on him. We've increased our activities seperately (DD & I) & as a family.

Thank you all for your advice :-)

DeskPlanner Sat 18-May-13 10:45:51

Good news, well done.

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