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Dr. Kaushik
Dr. Kaushik, Psychiatrist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 4636
Experience:  MD Psychiatry
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I have a step daughter who is now 18 with 2 kids and her life

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I have a step daughter who is now 18 with 2 kids and her life is basically spiraling down hill.

Background: My husband got her from her mother when she was 3. At that time she was molested by her mother's brother and taught to steal out of stores from her mother. We took her in and took care of her since then. At the time we also livedwith my husband's mother. She was upset that my husband gave me complete control over the kids so she would get at us by telling the kids things like no one loves exept your grandmother. Up until my stepdaughter was ten we had no problems with her. She came first in the Cinderella pageant she danced for events held by the school and she participated in junkanoo and other extra curricular activities. On her tenth birthday I asked her what she wanted and she said she wanted to spen easter break with her mother to get to know her so I sent her to her for 2 weeks. Her mother sent her to her other grand mother after a month (which we didnt know) then we finally got her back six months later. Since then it was all problems. Her grades went down. She wasn't interested in school and she started to get boy crazy. 2 years later we found out she was raped by her mother's boyfriend when she was over there and her mother made her keep it a secret. She got so boy crazy she started ducking school to be with boys. We took her out of public school and put her in private school. The promiscuity continued. But we still kept trying. She was on the track team, she was starting to do better in her grades, her principal liked her so much that she took her with her to represent the school at various events. One weekend she had a track meet that got her into the nationals. The next morning we woke up and she was gone leaving a note behind saying she was pregnant, so she dropped out of school in the 11th grade. We tried to get her to come home but she was from house to house by friends and boyfriends. When she was 8 months pregnant I got my mom to take her in but she stole from her so when my mom was moving she couldn't go with her. We found her an apartment but she didnt pay the rent and wouldnt get a job so she lost it. When the baby was 9 months we took her back in.

Curent: In January her baby was 1 and we found out she was 4 months pregnant we were so fed up we sent her back to her mother, and now the downward spiral is terrible

What do i do? I want to help her but how do I help her without enabling her laziness not to work while at the same time set an example for my younger ones. I dont want them to think I can move, mess up and just come back home. My 18 year old has nothing now exept a 1 month old and a 1year old. What do I do?

Hi there ,


Welcome to Just answer !


Well, i am completely overwhelmed by the display of warmth and affection that you have shown towards your step daughter ,what you have done for her, not even real parents do for their children in the current scenario , it is indeed my pleasure to come across a person like you who has great integrity and dignity and love for all , God bless you and you should be proud of yourself and the life that you are leading. However , it is equally dissapointing to know , that your step daughter does not appreciate your never ending efforts for her , and she keeps running back into trouble .


So,i will suggest that this time around you and your husband need to take a firm stand on the whole situation , and first try to make her understand in a friendly and warm manner about the repurcussions that she may have to face later on in life , due to the nomadic AND iresponsible life style she has chosen , not that her past has been any better and if this does not work , then you have to take a strict stand , and try to cut down her finances , which i presume you people must be paying , although keeping her children well looked after , it is just that you have to give her an ultimatum of sorts that she has to choose between good and bad for not only herself , but for her kids as well , and try to corner her in such a way that she does not meet her mother , because as long as her mother keeps influencing her lifestyle , she will behave in such an irresponsible manner .. This is a clear case of a child ( your step daughter ) being badly influenced by an irresponsible and self centered parent ( her mother ) , and although you are doing maximum to provide her a better future , your daughter in her present state of callousness , is depriving herself of your love and affetcion , as wella s a bright future for self and her kids.


So, i will suggest that you and your husband this time around take a firm stand and give her options and opportunity to ressurrect her life and start taking her life nore seriously ,as she needs to take care of her children as well , and time passes by very quickly , and once important time is passed it does not give a second opportunity , still she is young , and has a lot potential for a wonderful life.


Somehow , i feel that after you try to convince and give her an ultimatum for mending her ways , if still she does not comply and carries her ignorance around further , then it will be best for you guys to take her to a psychologist / psychotherapist and get her started on counseling ( psychotherapy ) such as behavioural therapy or cognitive behavioural therapy. I am quite sure help form a psychologist will make your task much easier , but i suggest this needs to be done after she declines your offer to get back to normalcy.


I wish you all the best .. Take care . God bless


I hope my answer serves your query according to your satisfaction.


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