My ex husband, ex in law's and my parents do not like that my boyfriend trys to help me discipline my child. I was a single parent for nine years before I met him and have been with him for 3 years now. He lives with us. My oldest, which is the one I'm asking about, hates him. She is now a teenager and is beginning to be manipulative and unruly. She's always been a good girl, but she hates my boyfriend. He has never abused her in any way and is in no way trying to take the place of her dad, which she clearly knows. With only myself as the disciplinarian in the home, my child refuses to adhere to the rules and consequences I have set. I need the reinforcement from another adult at times and if he is the only other one there, he trys to help and I don't see anything wrong with that. We don't abusively punish her, but we do make her mind, ground her, and when she and I get into arguements, he steps in when she begins to be extremely disrespectful to me, and he'll basically make her do what i was asking her to do in the first place. That kind of stuff. Can I get in trouble for this?
Sounds like appropriate discipline to me. Get a book on parenting a child that age for help for you and your boyfriend. Don't let him use corporal punishment.
Accepting cases in Dallas, Denton, Collin and Tarrant Counties. THIS IS GENERAL ADVICE AND DOES NOT REPLACE A PERSONAL CONSULTATION WITH AN ATTORNEY AND DOES NOT ESTABLISH AN ATTORNEY/CLIENT RELATIONSHIP
Your first duty is to your child, NOT your boyfriend. Your boyfriend should not be disciplining your children, and you should not be allowing him to do it. If your relationship is strong enough that marriage is appropriate, then you should be married. His moral authority is greater as a step-parent than as a boyfriend. You should not be living together either with the problems you are describing. You are fortunate the other parent has not filed to modify your custody. Why after 3 years is he still "boyfriend?" You should not get married for the wrong reasons, but you do not need a 3-year boyfriend that is causing this problem between you and your daughter.
Thomas J. Baker of Baker & Tisdale PLLC principally practices in the Central Texas area, including Bell, Coryell, McLennan, Milam and Williamson counties. The advice given here is not and ahould not be taken as a substitute for in-personal consultation with counsel, particularly where legal documents, such as court orders need to be reviewed. I am Board-Certified in Family Law but not in any other areas of practice.
Try some counseling to develop a relationship with your child so that she will listen to you. It will involve unlearning some habits that no longer work for you and developing new ones.
Do not allow your boyfriend to physically punish.
Do make sure rules and consequences are clear and articulate them to your ex. That may allay your ex's fears.
This answer DOES NOT establish an attorney-client relationship. This answer is based on the limited information provided and is not intended to be conclusive advice. There are likely other factors that might influence or change the advice after a more lengthy consultation.
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