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missys
missys asks:
Q:

When my fiance's 9 year old son hit me in the head with a shoe he didn't follow through with punishment. How should I react to this?

My 9 year old stepson screams at the top of his lungs, hit things, throws things, slams doors, and throws himself into objects when he's mad. The other day he pelted me really hard in the head with a shoe during a tantrum. It's been 2 days and I still have a bump. He apologized to me, because he wanted to go to soccer practice. My fiance asked how I wanted to handle it. I said "If he wants to go to soccer then he is grounded to his room for the rest of the day when he gets home from school." Everyone agreed to the punishment.
The next day when he came home I reminded him that he was grounded for the rest of the day. He told me that his dad said that he was only grounded from not going outside for the rest of the day. I said, "I thought he was grounded to his room for the rest of the day". My fiance said, "Well I told him he just can't go outside." So the rest of the night my stepson was able to watch tv and play inside.
His lack of follow through is the only thing that is consistent. The kids don't listen to him, because they know if they just get out of his sight for a while that he won't follow up with them. I have been assisting in getting them to listen with his permission. Now when I brought up that he didn't complete his 9 year old's punishment and that any child psychologist would tell him parents have to follow through with punishments or they will not take the parents seriously. Then he tells me to mind my own business and that they are his children. HELP!
In Topics: Discipline and behavior challenges, Blended families
> 60 days ago

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Expert

Dr.Monika
Jan 13, 2012
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What the Expert Says:

It is tough to be a step parent-to-be...  Your boyfriend already told you "to mind you own business", so now you have a better picture of where you stand with disciplining his kids.  If there is no consistency in follow-through and if one parent undermines the other, the kids will have no respect for either...

First, you have to have a serious talk with your boyfriend about his expectations of your role in his kids'  upbringing as the future step mom.
That might clarify some things for you.  You and him have to agree to be consistent.  You might consider seeing a family therapist, but that would require everybody's involvement.  

Best regards.
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Additional Answers (4)

lrpeoples
lrpeoples , Parent writes:
This is something you need to have a a discussion about especially before you get married. Because his children should respect you as an adult even if you are not their biological parent. After you have the discussion with your fiance a discussion with the children should follow so that everyone is on the same page!
> 60 days ago

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CjGomez
CjGomez writes:
Do NOT marry this fellow! He is setting the stage for your marriage and here is how it looks: He cannot handle his own children and he will also expect you to handle his other responsibilities and rescue him from his problems. Following the pattern, he will not appreciate your efforts, will ignore your advice, and will over-rule your decisions. Can you imagine the next 10 years of your "step-son" throwing shoes at you because his Dad doesn't follow through nor appreciate your advice, feelings, etc? Or imagine this... hubby wants YOU to rescue him and work two jobs because he just quit his job on a whim? Let him handle his own problems. You won't be able to change them no matter how hard you try. GET OUT NOW! No negotiation!
> 60 days ago

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Houli
Houli writes:
It sounds as if there is a special challenge you are facing. I suggest that rather than getting involved in a lose-lose situation that you look for a way for your fiance to see someone about this issue. I would start with the school guidance counselor and/or principal. I am sure this behavior is occurring at school as well.

It is clear that if this type of situation is allowed to continue, the repercussions and safety issues will become much more serious as the child gets older.

Good luck.
> 60 days ago

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Wellness4life
Wellness4life writes:
Missys, I opened an account just to respond to this question even though its 60 days old.  I hope I can help someone avoid the pain that I am now living.  I experience the exact same issue except I was married when my stepson hit me in the back and my husband did nothing about it.  Missys, run for your life.  It will get worse, and not better.  Why would you even want to stay with a man who doesn't have enough "gumption" to handle a nine year old.  He has issue for daysssss.  You also need to ask yourself, why would you even ponder staying with a man who doesn't respect you enough to follow through on his word.  OPEN YOUR EYES, don't ignore the signs! IT may hurt now to leave but staying could cost you a whole lot more.  I know I may sound quite harsh, but I lived this, got the t-shirt, and now practically separated from my husband.
> 60 days ago

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