Hi everyone. It's my first time posting. First, I want to say that while life with my school district has been very difficult, it's nothing compared to some of the stories I've read on here. So please don't take my posting as suggesting that my situation is as difficult as some of yours. But I've been looking for a place to get advice and this seems like a good place with good people, so I wanted to give it a try. First, the background. My school district is 14, and lives with her Mom and I full-time. Her Mom and I have been married for almost a year, and were seeing each other for three years before that. Her parents divorced when she was 9, and both her parents were emotionally abusive to her (and each other) while they were married. Her Mom was a yeller, and her Dad was very manipulative, lied, made false promises, never took responsibility for his action, yelled and used guilt to get his way. After leaving the marriage her Mom got a lot of counselling and is now a good, non-yelling, supportive Mom, but her Dad still continues with his abusive ways. We currently have her in therapy, although she resents having to go and resists any suggestions from the therapist that would require her to change her behaviour. While I don't think my school district has a conduct disorder (at least, not a serious one), she is extremely difficult -- beyond what I would expect from a normal teenager. She lies regularly, refuses to follow the house rules, refuses to listen when we try to talk to her, tries to manipulate us and ALWAYS gives attitude whenever we ask her (however politely) to do something. She also cuts herself (not seriously or regularly, but it's still a concern), gives her address to strangers on the Internet and has only one close friend... a young girl who is even more damaged than my school district is. Sadly, I know that a lot of my school district's inappropriate behaviour is learned and she's just doing what her mother did (the yelling) and her father does (the rest of it). We have tried very hard, in many different ways, to show her that this behaviour is destructive, and in some cases even dangerous. But she just doesn't listen -- even when the same message is sent by her therapist or others. We are supportive, loving and understanding, although that's been getting harder and harder to do. We set rules, she finds a way to break them. We try and explain why the rules are in place, she ignores us. We impose consequences for breaking the rules, she tells us she doesn't care and then proves it by repeating the behaviour again. No matter what we try, we can't get her to listen to us and change her behaviour. My school district has apparently always shown signs of these behaviours (anger, not willing to listen), but we had hoped that we could help her to change once she was in a healthier environment. But that just hasn't happened. Right now it's very frustrating, but my wife and I are very concerned about what choices my school district will make in a few years if we can't reach her. So here are the two issues I'm hoping someone can offer advice on: Issue 1: How do you get a child to make good choices when they refuse to make good choices, refuse to take responsibility for their actions, refuse to listen and refuse to follow rules? It feels like we need to be watching her 24/7, and it's exhausting. We don't know what else to do at this point. Issue 2: From pretty much day one, my school district has been cold and resentful to me. She rarely acknowledges my presence, replies in one-word responses when I try to speak to her and talks as if I'm not in the room whenever we're with other people. She's also told several people she hates me. I have tried everything I can think of to reach her and form some kind of relationship with her, but nothing has worked. I'm kind, considerate, thoughtful, funny... but she hasn't shown even a little sign of appreciation or acceptance of me. In therapy she admitted that she doesn't know why she doesn't like me, and admitted that she wouldn't like any man that her Mom chose to be with. Her Mom's told me that my school district has always been very jealous of her Mom's attention, and it appears to us (and the therapist) that her behaviour is based on that jealousy. I've heard that this isn't necessarily uncommon with stepchildren, and that it could take years for her to "warm up" to me (if she ever does). I understand that, and I could live with us having a polite, civil relationship, but after four years it's really bothering me that she treats me like I don't exist. Can anyone suggest any ways to get her to at least treat me with the respect that we would expect her to give a stranger? I appreciate any advice you can give.