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Carol Kryder LMFT
Carol Kryder LMFT, Mental Health Professional
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 808
Experience:  APA Board Certified, Diplomate,Substance Abuse Professional, 20 years family therapy experience
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I have been married to my second husband for 6 years, with 2

Resolved Question:

I have been married to my second husband for 6 years, with 2 children from my previous marriage. My husband has 3 kids from his first marriage. The problem is that my children hate my husband,especially my 14 year old daughter. His kids have always liked me, but I have tried to be very loving from day one. My husband treats me100 times better than my children's father. He has tried to have a relationship with my kids, but is getting very annoyed because he cannot say anything to discipline them or they get very disrespectful. He does not abuse them in any way. He may be a bit stricter than their father. I am at wits end,it iscrushin me. My daughter tells me she hates him and wants to move in with her dad. We have all kids exactly half of the time. I love my husband but my kids are always most important to me. There is so much tension in the house. I am trying to convince him to let me be their disciplinarian and not to speak up so much if he sees them doing something wron
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Carol Kryder LMFT replied 7 years ago.

Your instincts are correct. Your husband needs to back off and do it now or he will ruin not only his relationship with the kids but your marriage. His role in the discipline is to back you up, period. If there is an issue he needs to take it up with you. If he is unwilling to do this, I see no future for your marriage.

Sorry to be so blunt, but issues around children are the #1 cause of divorce in second marriages, and you can see why. This needs to be addressed. If he will not agree, insist that he go to couples counseling with you to work this out. Take charge now if you want to save your marriage.

Let me know if you have further questions. I wish you the very best.
Customer: replied 7 years ago.

Thank you for being so blunt. When you say he does need to back off, I guess I need to know if he should not be involved with any discipline?Many times he does not like the way my children may talk to me and immediately he gets involved. Also, I do believe he has the rights to give them chores, such as "can you please vacuum or can you please feed the dogs". I guess I am questioning when he needs to open his mouth.In your opinion,should he get involved only if they are doing something danagerous or hurtful? I always tell him to concentrate on his kids (his oldest son has many issues, such as lying, stealing etc) and I will concentrate on mine. Should he be more of a friend?Their biggest gripe is that he complains and opens him mouth about everything.I do not love his children like I love mine but I try to respect them.

Expert:  Carol Kryder LMFT replied 7 years ago.
Hello again:

Yes, because the situation is so dire, he should concentrate on being more of a friend and backing up rules you have imposed. Later, when he is getting along better with the kids you can have family meetings about behavior and expectations, etc, but for right now, the most he should do is to remind them to do things you have already said to do, or back you up in a confrontation with them, such as "Listen to your mother."

Of course dangerous or hurtful activity should be stopped immediately, but I recommend that he say something like "Your mother would not like that." He always needs to focus on you when disciplining the kids.
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