Trusting my 7 year old stepson again???? - FamilyEducation
Trusting my 7 year old stepson again????
02/29/2012 at 13:11 PM

My husband and I have been married for almost 2 years, together for 3. We have a beautiful baby girl together and a stepson from his first marriage who will be 8 this coming summer....

Last summer was the first time I met my stepson, we have talked many time on the phone, but he came to visit us for the first time last summer for a month. 2 weeks in, after already, many situations where he tested my authority (as any child would when they are dealing with a new parent), anyway, I had to walk into the garage for literally 10 seconds to get something, before I walked out I had asked my stepson to not touch his baby sister. She was only 5 months at the time and just learning to crawl so not very mobile, I ask him to not touch while I go out to the garage "I'd be back in 10 seconds" He said ok, when I came back she was crying, cause my stepson had his hand over her head and pushing it into the floor.

Never in my life have I ever wanted to hurt a child. I was so red that all I could think of was kicking him across the room then ripping his head off afterwards. I know that sounds horrible but that's what I was feeling at the time. Immediately he saw how angry I was at him. He started shaking and crying before I could even tell him to go into his room. I was shaking I was so angry and he knew. After I had the chance to calm down and see to my baby to make sure she was ok, just a little red on her face from the carpet I went in the bedroom to talk to my stepson. He was crying so bad he couldn't even talk. All my instincts as a mom told me to protect my child and get this boy out of my house. Instead, and to help my own peace of mind, I started asking him questions like "why did you touch your sister after i asked you not to?" "I don't know." "don't you like your sister?" "yes!" "were you trying to hurt her on purpose?" "no" etc. etc. i told him that when his dad got home he was going to tell him what happened, not me, He started to cry even harder knowing that he was really in trouble if he had to tell dad, and again when he would have to tell him mom when she called later that day.

The only thing i could think of after asking him questions and getting the answers I was getting, was that he is very smart and knew exactly what he was doing and just testing me even if that meant he would get in trouble, or he's just crazy in the head. thankfully when my husband came home and he heard the story from his son, he too was just as angry as i had been. We talked to each other later that night after my stepson had gone to bed and thankfully he was 100% on my side in how i was feeling. Even my stepsons mom was mortified, embarrassed and completely apologetic.

Every once in awhile, my stepson will sometime apologize for what had happened when we talk over the phone, and I never want to lay a guilt trip on him, that does nobody any good. But how do I trust him after that every again? I don't ever want to leave my daughter along with him, but there is a possibility that he will be coming to live with us full-time, so how do I deal with this issue, cause my lack of trust in him now will leave me suspicious with everything he does... especially when he gets into trouble. How do i get rid of this resentment toward him and how do I learn to trust him again without giving him the chance to be along with my baby just so he can prove he can do it without hurting her????

Steven M. R. Covey proposes a concept called Smart Trust. He suggests you consider these 3 things. 1. What is the opportunity? 2. What is the risk involved? a. what are the possible outcomes b. what is the likelihood of the outcomes c. what is the importance of the outcomes? 3. What is the character of the people involved. If I were you, I would not allow the boy to be with the baby until the baby was 10 years old, and had some chance of protecting herself.