More broken stuff and denial

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by FTN, Feb 8, 2008.

  1. FTN

    FTN New Member

    difficult child used to break other people's property (CDs, games, etc) routinely until spring-ish last year. I thought it was over with. Roughly six months ago I bought my SO a laptop. When we weren't home, she'd take it where she pleased to play neopets. Well, one time we got it back and the hinge assembly was off by a few mm which caused a creaking and popping sound. She obviously dropped it, I don't know if it was purposeful or not. The wear and tear of the hinge eventually snapped and now its just a brick. She denied dropping it but she was obviously lying. SO refused to do anything about it since she didn't see her do it.

    Now it was her birthday two weeks ago. I let her borrow my ipod and speaker unit that it can plug into while her friends were over. I just got the speakers set back last night. Went to plug it in, nothing. Tried another outlet. Nothing. Fan-****ing-tastic. "Thats another $200 broken by difficult child," I thought. So I checked out the ac adapter. There were three large cracks and several hairline fractures in it. Phew. A $200 headache shrank to $30. SO offered to purchase a replacement.

    So can someone explain to me why SO won't go after difficult child for breaking her new laptop yet offers compensation when something comparatively trivial of mine is damaged?
  2. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    Probably because SO's are not in charge of difficult children. DDD
  3. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    My intial gut reaction- without knowing anyone in this personally of course- SO is trying to keep peace and difficult child is really too young and not responsible enough yet to be left alone with expensive electronics. Avoid the frustration (and the expense)- no more access to this kind of stuff for difficult child with direct adult supervision.

    I think you are talking about a 9 yo difficult child, correct?
  4. meowbunny

    meowbunny New Member

    Sadly, sometimes it's just easier to do nothing than to do the battles -- especially when you don't have the evidence. It does sound like both of these incidents were accidents but kids are frequently afraid to even admit they accidently broke something. They still get the lectures (you may not have meant to break it but if you hadn't been using it when you shouldn't, it wouldn't have happened), the punishment. So, it is easier for the child to deny, especially at ages 8-12. Comes with the territory.

    For your SO, she probably has some PTSD. Most of us do. We've been screamed it, seen the temper tantrums too often. So, it is sometimes easier to just ignore the wrong than put up with the battle. As she said, she didn't see her daughter break her laptop and I'm sure she knew what the response and reaction would be if she insisted her child had indeed broken it, especially if she planned to dole out some punishment. So, denial is easier. For your property, there was little question who broke it since it was known who had it last. In addition, having your child break your things is one thing -- it goes with the territory -- it is another when someone else's things are broken. There is the responsibility for your child's actions, there is the guilt that something else has been broken, there is the fear that the other person will be angry at mom and at child. It is a horrid spot to be in. been there done that too many times.

    One thing I found that helped was to simply tell my daughter I knew she had done X. She didn't need to deny or argue it. Here was the consequence. End of discussion. If it turned out I was wrong, I would simply apologize and explain that I wouldn't have accused had it not occurred so often by her and her constant denials, which meant I couldn't believe any denial she made. It took awhile, but she did begin to admit at least some transgressions. Until that started to occur, it was just easier to state the obvious, do what was necessary and have no discussions about it.
  5. Steely

    Steely Active Member

    Because she feels like she needs to please you and make you happy so that you will stay in the relationship?
    Why does it bother you? I don't really understand. It is her child, and her material possessions, it is up to her how she wants to handle it.
  6. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    I must have misunderstood- I thought difficult child was your bio-child- no?
  7. FTN

    FTN New Member

    Nope. It's SO's.

    I just wonder why a parent would allow her daughter to break a new laptop and do nothing about it.
  8. Big Bad Kitty

    Big Bad Kitty lolcat

    Well I don't think she allowed her to do it any more than you allowed her to break your ipod things.

    In both cases the child is not responsible. When her laptop was broken, So had really one choice and that was to pay to fix it herself. It's not like difficult child has that kind of money. Perhaps in the future she will learn not to let difficult child use expensive things. In the case of the ipod, it was YOUR ipod, and of course SO was trying to be responsible FOR her child, but again, the child does not have the money.

    I think I remember you saying that SO is depressed. If that is the case, it makes sense that she would just let these things go with difficult child rather than deal with them. Dealing with them takes energy, and if you are depressed, you really don't have that.
  9. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    She probably figures that it will just cause more havoc, and that she won't get anything good out of it anyway.

    Do you at least have a lock on your bedroom door, or a study door? A good key lock, not those bedroom door locks you can pick with any long sinny object? It seems to me that it will be best all around to just routinely keep things locked up away from the 9yo, esp if she is to be left home alone at all. Many of us have to do this.

  10. Star*

    Star* call 911

    She's not over the abuse from her last marriage to her and the kids - why would you think she could handle ANYTHING in a positive and proper way from that point out? Aint gonna happen.

    She needs counseling - and you should put your expensive toys up and learn to say NEVER no matter how big of a butthole you are to be called and how unfair you will appear to be.

    been there done that got counseling - Like I said before - if you want things to get better and s/o won't get counseling - you should go. If you care about her and those kids - you should seek out some professional help, tell them the whole story and get advice and tips from someone like that to help you cope with her and them.

    Not being ugly - just stating facts. If she's unwilling to go - get yourself in -you can go free from the VA. What's wrong with admitting that you love her and the kids so much that you're willing to do anything to help ? Not a thing.