Alexandra and Katherine resent me holding them accountable for their mishaps. I am not very good at sugar coating things. I call people out. I am quite good at backing someone into a corner and making that person feel completely offended and inadequate.

I finally have come to the realization this may help me feel better for a few moments, at the great expense of my relationship with the person subjected to my miserable argument. Like many of my BFO's (Blatant Flash of the Obvious), changing this dreadful practice of mine requires serious change on my part.

Dr. Phil is a well-educated, professional psychologist. Me: I think I know it all after my college psych 101 class!

Interestingly, I have always treated Nathan and Leilah very well. I am exceptionally careful of how I discipline and correct the children. I seek out successful parents and inquire about what they did to mold and create successful adults - including Dr. Phil and Robin. Their books are most helpful.

I have noticed one particular common denominator among successful parents - the parents are respectful of each other and value each others thoughts and contributions. Even when the parents don't agree on how to handle a particular situation, they do not argue about the issue in front of their children.

I think Alexandra and Katherine are occasionally resentful of how Marty and I care for Nathan and Leilah. Marty and I interact with Nathan and Leilah on a closer level than we did with Alexandra and Katherine when they were little girls.

Lastly, I think Alexandra is angry with me because she considers me a hypocrite. Fair enough on her part. I rationalize my choices: I am older, I have suffered more, paid my dues, and it is payback time. Erin, the great martyr. Uhmm, no. Glory!
I am sure many parents have heard their children complain one of their siblings is your favorite child because you do this and don't do that.  I love and treat both my daughters for who they are, as individuals, not as the same person.  What I do for one daughter may not be right for the other. My daughters, Alexandra and Katherine are certainly no different.  Alexandra and Katherine have rarely ever been in need of anything.  I find it most interesting whenever I am engaged with one daughter; the other becomes desperate for my attention. I must stop, drop and roll to her immediate need, if not, then, obviously, I love the other daughter more than her.   I hope they can see this when they are older. I certainly hope Alexandra can see this now, as she is supposed to be raising two children herself.

I love Alexandra very much. I am disheartened to hear she thinks I do not love her. Perhaps this is her way of trying to get my attention. Occasionally, I find this thought of hers very interesting. Alexandra must have no idea that so much of my time, energy and money (two pregnancies, one pre-term labor, boyfriends, cars, and a wedding, etc.) are given to her was because I love her. Nathan has lived with Marty and I most of his six-year-old life. Leilah also lives with us now. I suppose, caring for Alexandra's children does not count as my loving her...

This brings me to my real concerns. Alexandra is quite focused on negative comments and the irrelevant: what I think about Tony, I do not like where she lives, or that I love Katherine more than her. Better yet, I am more concerned about her children, Nathan and Leilah, than I am about her. I feel frustrated when Alexandra throws out all these ridiculous accusations.  She is trying to divert attention from the true problems by focusing on petty, unimportant issues.

Let me be very clear about Alexandra's boyfriend, Tony: NO, I do not like him. I think he is uneducated, and unemployed. I think he is insolent, self-centered and lacks ambition, at almost 24 years old; he owns absolutely nothing - not a phone, or even a vehicle.

I made so many mistakes raising Alexandra and Katherine. I feel very guilty about their issues as adults that are a direct result of my poor parenting.

Dr. Phil helped me realize how important it is to articulate my feelings, rather than lash out in anger, making character assassinations, so I can feel better for 30 seconds.

I want Alexandra to learn these things now. The expense of waiting is too high for her children.
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