Are you contemplating divorce due to your stepchild? Things can get out of control when you or your partner are not addressing your stepchild’s behavior. This may lead to others calling their marriage quits.
Don’t take divorce lightly. And if your stepchild has pushed you to the extent you are contemplating divorce, it means something has gone wrong. A couple of reasons can make you find yourself in such a situation. There are also several factors at play here, so it’s not a one size fits all answer. However, there are things you can do to cope with your stepchild better.
This article discusses instances that stepchildren can make you contemplate divorce and how to deal with them. Read on!
How Can A Stepchild Make You Contemplate Divorce And Solutions
The most common way stepchildren lead to divorce is their behavior. If you inherit a kid with terrible behavior, it can result in lots of tension in your family.
Everyone knows that some children are out of control. And if you’ve been unlucky enough to marry someone with a troubled child, they can negatively affect your relationship with your partner. Dealing with such a child adds stress to you and your partner.
Sometimes the behavior can be so bad that it makes someone contemplate divorce. This happens especially when the stepchild is physically or emotionally abusive to one or either parent. There’s always a line to draw to protect your mental health, and you’re the one to decide where that line is.
Several factors can point out if a child has crossed the line. Here are a couple of questions you need to ask yourself to establish whether your stepchild’s behavior is affecting your mental health:
- How much time do you spend thinking about the stepchild’s behavior?
- How often do you and your spouse talk about the child’s behavior?
- Is the stepchild disrespectful towards you or your partner?
These questions should help you establish if your stepchild’s behavior is why you contemplate divorce.
This can be challenging from the stepparent’s perspective. It’s always good to leave discipline to the biological parent, especially in new marriages. The only problem may arise when the biological parent has let the behavior happen for a long time such that the child becomes accustomed to the behavior.
Depending on the age, breaking bad habits in children can be very challenging. And the trick is to have family rules and consequence charts that are adhered to. The consequences and rules
should be clear and agreed upon by all.
Manipulation from your stepchild can also make you contemplate calling it quits. This could be causing a real strain on your relationship with your partner.
In some situations, children lie about their stepparents to create a rift between their biological parents and their new partner. Don’t let this behavior happen. Ensure you’re on the same page with your partner and take action to avoid such behavior from happening in the future.
The best thing to do here is for you and your partner to work together and correct your stepchild’s behavior.
Remember, whether you like it or not, marrying into a blended family gains you an additional child. And although it won’t be easy, you may be required to start parenting the child as if they were yours. If you feel like this is too much work, share it with your partner as this stepchild is probably the most important person in their life, and they deserve to be aware.
Manipulation usually comes from the stepchild thinking that the stepparent doesn’t love or respect them. They feel like the stepparent views them as a burden instead of a welcome addition to the family. The stepchild may resent their parent moving on from a divorce or parental death. They may feel overshadowed by other siblings residing in the house.
Stepchildren use manipulation because they think that’s the best way to communicate. To help them communicate better and stop the manipulation, show them that you love and accept them through words and actions. Talk with them, listen to them, establish their goals and dreams, etc.
Discussing your partner’s priorities before marriage is very crucial. Most couples don’t have this talk before tying the knot and find themselves in a situation where they feel like their spouse is prioritizing their child over them.
And this is what is supposed to be happening. Your spouse may be doing their job as a parent and putting their kid first. This shouldn’t be a cause for concern for you. If anything, it should increase your admiration for them.
Being in a relationship with someone that knows their priorities is not easy. And if you are one of those who think you should be the top priority in your partner’s life, you need to think again. Especially if you also have kids.
This is usually a problem common in relationships where one member has children, and the other doesn’t. It may be challenging to understand how significant children can become to you until you have your own.
The most important thing is for you to share these concerns with your spouse. Tell them what is bothering you and why. Focus more on how you feel using “I feel” statements than accusatory statements like “you are doing ABC,” as it will make them go on the defensive.
Ensure you also listen. Listen to why your spouse feels the way they do. How do they feel about your relationship and the family dynamic with the child. Remember, effective communication has saved more marriages than you may think.
Being in a scenario where your stepchild has driven you to the point of contemplating divorce can be scary. You will feel powerless and worried about ending a relationship with someone you love.
The best thing to do here is to communicate with your partner. Have an open dialogue with them about your feelings and emotions.
Remember, not all communication is created equal. When talking with your partner, go somewhere quiet. Share your emotions clearly without accusations or attacking the kid. Doing so will put your partner in a defensive mode. Try your best to work out your differences. And let the thought of leaving your marriage be the last option after exhausting all avenues.