my stepdad isn’t fair

dear heather,

My dad died before I was born, so the only father I’ve known is my stepdad. But over the years I have grown to hate him. He treats me differently from my stepsisters. Even if they do something wrong, I get in trouble because they’re his kids. Is it wrong for me to feel this way? Please help!

Your feelings are never wrong. What’s important is figuring out why feel that way and learning what you can do to make changes.Living in a stepfamily environment often means a lot of conflicts and adjustments, even though your stepfather is the only father figure you’ve known. It’s not fun or fair, but some adults treat their stepchildren differently than they treat their own kids.

You might consider talking to your stepfather about how you are feeling. Pick a time when both of you are relaxed and not preoccupied with something else. It may be easier to do this by telling him how you feel, as opposed to being accusatory about how you think he is acting. If you don’t feel you can talk to him, seek out your mom’s help. Tell her how you feel and maybe she can talk to your stepfather for you. If the situation is really unbearable, maybe family counseling with a therapist or a medical professional could help. National Stepfamily Resource Center, the Stepfamily Network, or any of the DEAL WITH IT! family resources.

take care,

Posted in: Family, Help Me Heather