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How Do I Handle Stepdaughter’s Drama?

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From a woman in the U.S.:  My husband’s daughter is 19 years old and she constantly causing drama. she lies and tells people I mistreat her tell people she hates me etc. me and my husband have been together for 6 years we have two children a 3 year old and 2 year which his daughter never asks for at all. they don’t exist to her but the moment she can talk about me she will bring up how she doesn’t see them etc

she cause is so many problems so did her mom they my husband stood his ground but she doesn’t stop she puts post up about me etc then tell people I’m jealous it’s annoying it’s been going on for 5 years and she doesn’t seem to quit then she plays that daddy don’t love me card a lot she tells everyone he doesn’t do anything for her because me or  if he can buy her something or give her money she will tell him that someone could kill her or rape her bad he wouldn’t care or she would say ooh you can spend it on your girlfriend and the kids

she already 19 at first my husband said it’s a faze she will get over it but she continued she would come over to my house and dig Thur my bills and stuff and send it to her mom she would take pics of my house and send it to her mom she would try to make my husband argue with me I allowed her in my house  several  times  in the 5 years and she was treated great like one of my own but the drama continue she would lie so much and blame me for everything she beyond jealous I don’t know what to say or do

How Do I Handle Stepdaughter’s Drama?

Answered by on -


Thank you for writing. In psychology, the term “projection” is when someone projects (like a film projector) their own feelings onto another person. Your stepdaughter says that you are jealous. It looks to me like she may be projecting her jealousy on you.

You are only 10 years older than she is so it’s not possible for her to think of you as an additional mother in her life. To her, you are a competitor for her daddy’s affection, attention, and even money. I’m guessing that she has strong feelings about the divorce and, consciously or unconsciously, wants to undermine your marriage. Apparently, she and her mother agree about this, which complicates things even more. The daughter is acting as her mother’s spy in a divorce that doesn’t look like it’s over — at least for her mother.

Your husband is caught between his love for you and his desire to be loved by the daughter he loves. It is understandable that he doesn’t know how to navigate this very difficult situation.

I strongly urge you and your husband to see a licensed family counselor about how best to deal with his daughter’s feelings and behavior. You two need to be a team. A counselor will help your husband figure out how to love and support both you and his daughter without endangering your marriage. You will be helped to understand how to support him and how to navigate your own relationship with the daughter and her role in your children’s lives.

I wish you well.

Dr. Marie

How Do I Handle Stepdaughter’s Drama?

Therapists live, online right now, from BetterHelp:

Dr. Marie Hartwell-Walker

Dr. Marie is licensed as both a psychologist and marriage and family counselor. She specializes in couples and family therapy and parent education. Follow her on Facebook or Twitter.

APA Reference
Hartwell-Walker, D. (2019). How Do I Handle Stepdaughter’s Drama?. Psych Central. Retrieved on November 27, 2020, from
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 19 Sep 2019 (Originally: 22 Sep 2019)
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 19 Sep 2019
Published on Psych All rights reserved.