Trying to Thread the Needle for SO
My SDs come from a generation with a victim mentality. All signs point to the explosion of social media as the cause of this. They are offended by something and when asked what the issue is they give vague answers that leave you scratching your head wondering what you did wrong.
I have a SD who has been coming back around and for the sake of her mother, I have been gentle with her. She wanted to "talk" to me and requested a time to speak. I work 60 hours a week and have a wife and five kids who are a priority, but I pull out my schedule and set up a time that her mother will be there while my other children are in school. She showed up and the conversation lasted about a half hour.
In a nutshell here is how it went:
SD: You were never there for me emotionally
Me: Well, honey I am sorry you feel that way. What is it that I did specifically to you so I can do my best to repent and make things right?
SD: It wasn't anything specific, you were just never there.
Me: What do you mean? I was always available and when you graduated you even wrote me a letter thanking me for always being there.
SD: Yes you were always there, but you weren't there emotionally
Me: Well I apologize for hurting you, but I really would like to know what I did to hurt you so deeply.
SD: It was emotional so you can't see it.
...and you get the point. Never anything specific, just that I was never there. It was accusation after accusation. This is what those with a victim mentality do. They accuse with blanket statements that can mean anything. I learned from my oldest SD that these types of questions are usually their way of trying to trap you when you make a suggestion of something it could be. This is why I insist they answer and tell me what I did wrong so I can make it right. They can never give specific examples.
To be clear I am a step-dad and her biological dad left for three years when she was 10 until 13. I could list all the times I took her out to eat so she could vent, took her to and from basketball practice and work, and stayed up until 3 AM listening to her problems despite having to work at 7 AM. Just recently when she popped back into our life with no money or job it was me who set up an affordable place for her to live and even worked to get her old job back. Yet, she has the nerve to tell me I was never there for her...emotionally.
I believe she is projecting her father's failures onto me or possibly her dad worked her over and made up lies. In the end, I don't really care anymore and I do not have time for it. I come to this forum to vent a bit because it is a safe place with others in similar situations and sometimes you just need an outlet.
As the conversation ended I went and picked up my 5 other children from school. When I came home my 12, 11, 10, 8, and 5-year-olds came into the house, began their chores, did their homework, walked the dogs, and then I took one of them on a golf cart drive so I could spend some alone time with them. (I do this every day with one of my kids so they each have their own day to talk to me)
I returned from the golf cart drive after an hour and without knowing it my SD was still at my house talking to my wife. I usually try to keep her away from my kids, but that day it didn't happen.
She came up to me and said, "If you had done that with me then I probably wouldn't feel the way I do about you now" (another accusation and a form of entrapment) My two boys overheard her say that and my 12-year-old was visibly angry. She wasn't even gone for 10 months and she acts as if it has been 10 years. I have not changed and have done the same thing for the past 5 years which included the time that she and her sister lived here. The only difference is that a deadbeat sperm donor does not have any influence over my children.
I did not respond. I loaded up my two boys for football and headed off to practice where I was able to relieve stress by throwing 40-yard post routes to middle schoolers.
While I want my wife to have a relationship with her daughters these little intrusions do me more harm than good. I could feel my blood pressure go up when she was there and I was just recently taken off of my blood pressure medicine due to reducing my stress, losing weight, and changing my diet. It is as though I am walking on eggshells all over again.
I have to thread the needle with this because my wife wants a relationship and I do not. If I spoke to my SD and had an adult conversation and told her that we are going to have to agree to disagree about how she was treated but don't bring it up to me again then there is a good chance that she just cut my wife and me out. I wouldn't care, but my wife would.
Man, I just don't want this anymore.