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What to Do About Daughter/Fiancee?


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I've posted before about conflict between my daughter and my fiancee where I am put in the middle.


She is 20; he is 56; I am 53. She is a sophomore in college and only comes home over breaks. Next summer she plans to stay in the city where she attends school.


There has been resentment on my daughter's part toward my fiancee from the get-go six years ago... without going into too much detail, I'll say that I understand how hard it has been for her to be accepting (age, circumstances, etc.).


My fiancee and I do not live together. We plan to get married in the spring.


My daughter is very strong willed, sometimes to the point of being a bully. My son (age 23) told me tonight that he feels she is a b****, and he would have nothing to do with her if she weren't his sister. Believe me, it tears me apart hearing that because-- even tho he is probably right in some ways-- I don't want her to be thought of in that way.


Okay so this afternoon, my fiancee was in the living room while she was in the dining room. I pointed out this i-Pod docking system her bf had purchased for her birthday, and my fiancee was admiring it and asking her a couple of questions. He is an electronics person and removed her i-pod from the unit to see how it fit in. She came into the room and basically told him he should have asked her if he could do that, and then a heated discussion occurred where he debated whether or not she lost her play list and how he should not have touched it without her permission, etc., etc., etc..


Okay, so that debate went nowhere. I think my fiancee could have dropped it before it went on and on, but he did not raise his voice or get nasty. He just did not back down and neither did she.


Now keep in mind that I do anything and everything for my daughter, from letting her take my car to driving five hours to pick her up from school, to taking her bf and his family out to dinner. I try to show her my caring and love for her in many ways. It seems petty that she would make a huge deal out of my fiancee basically just touching "her stuff."


Afterwards she tells me that she feels unwanted while she is here. That makes me feel horrible.


My fiancee is getting surgery in a couple of weeks and he feels he cannot be around her while she is staying here. If she is at my house instead of her father's house, he will probably go to his brother's house to recover. He can't take the stress of being around her and not being able to be himself.


WHAT SHOULD I DO? I hate being in the middle. I don't see how I can tell her she has to stay at her father's house, but I do understand that my fiancee can't be around her b.s. while he's recovering from an operation. Should I tell my daughter she will have to stay at her dad's for the last five days of her vacation? Or should I tell my fiancee to stay with his brother who lives two hours away???

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Given the issues with your daughter I would say he probably should not have pulled out her ipod without asking her first. Instead of the argument he should have just been the bigger person and walk away. Your daughter is very ungracious and you should have taken a stand and told your daughter to stop arguing and let it go. You can't tell your daughter to stay at her father's for the last five days of the vacation..but what you can do is encourage your fiance to stay with you and at the same time tell your daughter that she needs to behave herself and not get into it with your fiance especially since he will be recovering from surgery. You can tell her that you would like them both to be able to get along and that you hope that she will understand that your fiance needs to be relaxed so that he can recover. If your daughter throws a tantrum and volunteers to be at her father's place because she doesn't want to have to behave at your place, then so be it...let it be her decision to be uncooperative. You just show her the love she needs but at the same time being firm that there are others to think about as well.

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Crazy, It's an on-going lesson for her to learn to be considerate of others and to know that the world does not revolve around her. She is getting better, but it is a hard process. I was thinking of speaking out during their argument, but part of me thinks they need to find their own common ground without me being the interloper.


I think my fiancee will probably choose to stay with his brother rather than chance the unpredictability of my daughter. He is even saying that he doesn't want to come over on Christmas or do other family things. He is fed up with her. My son told me he applauds my fiancee for standing up to her, but at the same time, he feels my fiancee should have dropped the conversation before it escalated.


I guess I will do what you suggest-- not ask my daughter to stay with her dad... and my fiancee can stay with his brother. I'm sure he will be disappointed in me because he'll feel I am not standing up to my daughter, but I can't please everyone. That's for sure.


Thank you!!!!

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I think you should encourage your fiance to stay with you and tell him that you will have a stern talk with your daughter. You do indeed need to stand up to your daughter and set rules for her continued stay with you...and those rules mean respecting your fiancee. This man is going to be your husband...he is in a difficult situation...YOU need to step in the middle and put your daughter in her place...it has to come from you because YOU are the authority figure in her life, not him. If YOU lay down the law with her then it shows your fiancee that you will not allow your daughter to walk all over him. You can't leave it to him to sort out his battles all alone because in the final analysis, she is your daughter and she needs to hear it from you...you need to be the one taking the stand. Now taking a stand doesn't mean you have to choose between her and him...it simply means that you have to make it clear that you love her, want her to be there but at the same time there are rules that she must obey...namely she has to show respect for the person who will be your husband. If you don't take a stand with your daughter she will drive a wedge between you and your fiancee. This is already happening...he is having surgery and you should be the one by his side...he should feel comfortable enough to want you by his side during the recovery process. The fact that he doesn't feel comfortable and doesn't even want to be around over Christmas is a big red flag about the state of your relationship. By not taking a stand with your daughter and laying down the law, you are putting in jeopardy your relationship with your fiancee. You do not have to cut your daughter out...you just have to set firm boundaries.

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She feels I always take his side and I make her feel unwelcome. I am not afraid to talk turkey with her... but I think she will take it as another sign that I am choosing his feelings over hers. For ex., she feels she did nothing wrong today, even though I told her that she is making a mountain out of a molehill-- that she could have simply come into the living room and offered to show him how to use the stupid thing instead of getting arrogant about it and making it sound like he would disrespect her things, or make it seem like he would possibly mistreat them. In other words, I am dealing with a girl who cannot look at herself. It is always the other person's fault. If I tell her she has to be respectful, she will get mad and say that she IS respectful and how dare I think otherwise-- know what I mean? I cannot get through to her!!!!

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You may not be able to get through to her, but you still need to lay down the law. She is old enough to live on her own if she doesn't like your rules. You can't cater to someone who behaves like that..even your son thinks she is a brat. Your fiance is going through surgery...your daughter needs to tow the line and if she wants to pull the "oh woe is me" card then you have to be strong enough to let her go or else she will forever bully and manipulate you and your fiance.

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First, my heart goes out to you. Your daughter is an adult, and it's not a bad thing to disabuse her of the idea that acting out wins her an extended childhood.


Your proposal to her would not be unreasonable. If she won't promise a peaceful stay during fiance's recovery, then you're not doing her any favors by catering to manipulation from her, and she has other options for a place to stay that week.


I'd remind her that your home is open to her whenever she can demonstrate respect for you and the rest of your family, which includes your fiance. I wouldn't permit her to run your household with accusations about who's 'side' you're on--that battle line is hers, not yours.


I also think you were right to stay out of her argument with your fiance. It is up to them to chart their own territory, and referee isn't a role you should allow yourself to be forced into--especially during the time when your daughter's behavior is voluntary while your fiance's recovery is not.


In your corner.

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I absoutely disagree with the above poster BTW. You are the disciplinarian, not him and you needed to discipline.


It had nothing to do with the iPod, it was about territory and her claim over it and you. I feel for him. He is in your home and gets spoken to like that? Do you allow anyone else to be spoken to by her in that way in your own home? I doubt it so why are you allowing it to happen to the man you will (hopefully) spend the rest of your life with?


You should have jumped in immediately, your finacee should not have to put up with that. It escalated because YOU did nothing. They will NEVER find a common ground if you allow him to be sniped at in your own home. If my teenage kids did that I would intervene immediately and I would be the discipliner.


I think that he should stay with you because she needs to learn a valuable lesson of consequences. He belongs with you, he needs your care and if he does not she will be smug and feel she has won. She is interfering with your relationship and you will lose the man you love if you allow this to go on any longer.

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