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Question
Posted by: Yellow | 2005/11/21

Three kids and husband sometimes a war zone!

Hi Cybershrink

I have three children, two from my first marriage and one with my husband. We have been married for 9.5 years. My eldest is 15, middle is turning 11, and youngest is turning 9.

As with all step families we have a few hiccups.

My husband and I often end up in a fight about how we handle the kids, as I feel he spoils the younger one too much (lee-way allowed as it is his only child).

I bought the eldest one a cell phone when he went to highschool as he was no longer in aftercare and I wanted to be able to check up on him. Towards the end of that year my husband bought both the little ones cell phones, which I thought was crazy as the youngest was then 8. Perhaps one cell would have been ok which the middle one could use for us to contact them and for them to contact us regarding school pick ups etc. The youngest one of course lost his and got one of our upgrades.

Then this year my oldest wanted the new PSP that has just been released. He had saved his pocket money, and he worked part time to make up the balance and I bought him one (paying in a little).
Not long after that my husband goes out (without talking to me about it) and buys the youngest one a PSP. He certainly could not afford it (they are damn expensive) and the kid is not even 9 years old yet. I was annoyed as this made my oldest one disgruntled because he had to work for his, the middle one is now left out.

It is so damn difficult to be fair to all three of them, as they are different ages and have different interests.

The other problem is that they fight, and the older two tend to gang up on the youngest. Then of course my husband steps in and makes a big fuss. The youngest is however a HUGE pain (even though I love him to bits). It is just that he knows if he kicks up a fuss Dad will jump in. I keep telling my husband to stop intefering with their fights and taking sides as this just makes it worse. I believe that if they are fighting I dont care who did what they can all go to their rooms until they can be civil to one another.

My youngest one also has a weight problem. The other two are slim and athletic and the youngest is overweight and clumsy, so the older two tease him. The thing is that unless I put a lock on the fridge and the grocery cupboard I dont know how to stop the younger one eating so much!!! My husband buys the groceries and I have asked him not to buy coke, cookies and choc's but he does, and the youngest is getting fatter and fatter. Since he got the PSP it is even worse as he does not ride his bike anymore just sits and plays PSP. I am worried he is going to get diabetes or something. What i want to do is take the damn thing away during the week and make him ride his bike, but then my husband and I will fight again.

Generally we are all loving and good together but I need my husband to understand that he is causing alot of trouble between the kids, (and I am allowing it to avoid fighting with my husband).

How do I find a balance? Any advise will be appreciated.

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

Yello, yellow
Marriage counselling possible ? He needs to learn that so foolishly spoiling the youngest one is bad for that child, as well as for the others.

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Our users say:
Posted by: Dee | 2005/11/21

Hi yellow

This is a tough one - but my new mottois : There is a Solution.

Talking is the only way out - and through a therapist - even better. It sounds like your husband feels some sort of guilt towards his child and is overcompensating ( at the risk of causing a lot of damage to all three kids). The youngest child is also manipulating the situation big time - cos he is invariably getting his way. This is not a good character building lesson and all and he iss gonna turn into a con artist somewhere down the line - simply cos it pays dividends,

On the other hand I am of the FIRM opinion that the eating disorder has to do with self-esteem issues and is psychological somehow. Maybe the circumstances of not having his mother around?? I think the child needs help and that would solve the problems for the family at large.

Just my thoughts...

Reply to Dee
Posted by: Delene | 2005/11/21

I agree yellow.

Is goood to teach them to work hard. WHo wants spoilt brats anyway!?

Is not easy though hu!?

Reply to Delene
Posted by: Yellow | 2005/11/21

Hi Frosty

Try to tell my kids they should be glad with what they have. I remember saying to them a while ago that my duty was to look after them, feed them, clothe them and educate them ... but no one said I had to do it in style!!!!

We are fortunate to be able to buy our kids nice things, but I am trying to make them work for what they get. It is just that the baby seems to get everything without the necessary work and it is not doing him any good.

Reply to Yellow
Posted by: Frosty | 2005/11/21

Haai ou Jellou. Ek hettie eintlik raatie. Maar wees bly julle koopie karre en hyse virrie kinners nie jong.

Reply to Frosty
Posted by: Delene | 2005/11/21

CS, ya know, i have the same question.
You know by now i aslo have 3 kids.
Love all 3 of them DEARLY!!!
but my sun does get away with so much more
And i must be very disciplined to be fair. Honestly. For sum reason he is just so close to my heart.

And my youngest daughter, the baby, the cutypie, gets away with murder with my husband(not his own) but he loves her allot.
He loves all 3, but the two youngest do get more attention.
I try very hard to give more to my eldest
She is the difficult one.
Is like a bad cycle.....
The more difficult she is, the less attention she gets from us, the more difficult she become, the less......etc etc etc

I agree with Yellow, to keep a balance, is not easy.
especially when there is a stepfather involved.

I'm scared to have a child with him...I'm scared his child will be everything & mine nothing.
Even though he is not like that, i am not sure......what if ya know?

Reply to Delene

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