When this stepmom is conflicted, she asks Reddit:
My husband and I each came into our marriage with one child. His daughter is 17 and mine is 21. We met when SD was 8 and D was 12, and married when they were 12 and 16. I love my SD as if she were my own child.
She is an amazing, sweet and beautiful girl, and I am so proud of the woman she will grow up to be, and that she has allowed me to be a part of it in the way that she has.
Early on in our relationship, my husband and I agreed that if our children ever asked for alone time with their parent, for any reason, we respect that and will have no hurt feelings about it. We do family vacations and vacations with just SD and D, and that is fine too, but this is what works for us.
Last week my daughter called me up crying. Her boyfriend of 3 years broke up with her out of nowhere and started dating someone else. She is convinced he cheated on her but has no proof.
She came to visit with us over the weekend and spent a full day just sobbing in her room. As a surprise, and to make her feel better, I wanted to take her out for the day, just me and her.
I made reservations at a spa for pedicures and massages and plan to take her shopping and out to lunch.
My husband is fully aware of this plan, and even helped me find a nice place for the spa trip. The reservations were for two (me and D) and, I thought he understood that this was just a me and her thing.
This was also supposed to be a week where he didn't have SD. I told my daughter about the trip and she was happy and said she really needed this time with me, it was the first time I saw her even attempt to smile in over a week. The reservation fowls for Saturday.
On Friday, my husband's ex called and told him she had a family emergency and asked if we could take SD so she wouldn't miss school. Of course we agreed and she dropped her off on Friday afternoon.
On Saturday morning when we were leaving, SD asked where we were going and I told her we were having a mother/daughter thing to try and cheer up D. SD asked if she could go, and I told her not this time, but we could do something tomorrow (Sunday).
After we left, my husband texted me and said that it was rude of me to not take SD and she was upset. I replied to husband that this was one of those alone times where we agreed that no hurt feelings would be had. He claims that since my daughter did not ask for this that SD should have been included.
When we got home SD refused to speak to either of us. All day yesterday we got the silent treatment, and this morning she left for school and didn't even say goodbye to me like she normally does.
My husband said that it's my fault and I should apologize to her for hurting her feelings, and I will, but I also think that my daughter needed me and I wanted to be there for her.
AITA for not taking SD to the spa trip?
NTA.Sometimes even 100% bio siblings need one-on-one time with a parent. There's nothing wrong with that and this is clearly a difficult time for your daughter.
SD is 17, not 7. She's old enough to know better and your husband is doing a poor job as a parent by enabling this.
You need to have a talk with your husband and he needs to address the situation.
NTA. Agreed! And I don’t think the step/bio daughter distinction matters here… even if they were both your biological children, it would be totally ok (even encouraged!) to spend some special one-on-one time with a child in need of a little extra love and attention.
You did not intentionally exclude your step daughter AND this was clearly a special circumstance. If she and your husband really can’t understand that, it’s about time they learn you can’t always get what you want!