Wednesday, May 16, 2007

What is a stepmother?

What is a stepmother anyway? On the one hand she is not the bio parent, by definition. She may have bioloigcal children, but they are not how she became a stepmother.

On the other hand, she is not a step. Not really sure how the word step gets in there; it is not all that descriptive.

A stepmother cannot simply act like a mother for a number of reasons. There is probably a mother already filling the position of mother - and typically there is not room for two in that position. When stepmothers try to wedge themselves into the mother position, it places the stepchildren into a loyalty dilemma - a dilemma the stepmom is going to lose no matter how good a person she is or how lousy the bio mother is.

And yet, the stepmother is there and present with the stepchildren and someone has to be responsible. So, how does she pull that one off? How can a stepmother be a responsible parental figure without violating the bio mother's position in the stepchildren's lives?

A stepmother is a woman who enters a family slowly, takes on authority slowly, and never fails to keep a healthy amount of space for the bio mom - emotionally and otherwise. She has as much authority as she has earned with the stepchildren. She is supported by her husband. She admits her mistakes to others and celebrates her victories privately. She waits. Sh resists the temptations of normalcy and accepts the messy reality. She learns to anticipate certain kinds of messes and embraces them with an ironic sense of peace.

If you are a stepmother, you are someone who creates a working path through the unknowable, adjusts the direction of the path on the way, and knows that her goodness is her gift to the world, her family and herself. She knows that she will ahve her reward at the end of the journey, not at the beginning.

50 comments:

rhonda said...

I am a new step-mother and this article helped me to see where the boundaries of my role really lay. My husband does not seem to understand though. He claimed his feelings were hurt on Mother's Day when he asked me if I felt like a mother to his son and I stated, "No, because truly, I am not his mother"
My step-son's mother is alive and he has a relationship with her. They spend every weekend toghether. After 18 months of a relationship, there is no way I am going to feel like his mother- probably only after 18 years will I begin to feel like a signficant entity in his life. I am realistic though, I know this is going to take time. I feel my husband has placed an unrealistic and unfair expection on me - to feel like this child's mother after only 18 months.
What do you think?

Mandi said...

I think you're right on. I've been a step-mom of 4 for 3 years. Each child and I have a different relationship based on age and receptiveness to the situation. Kids are very loyal to their bio parents whether they deserve it or not. It is in our (the Step-parent's) best interest to let the kids choose how they want to grow the relationship with us, and not put unrealistic expectations on how that should progress. I learned this weekend that the average step family takes at least 7 years to blend. Some less, some more. So the biggest thing is give time:)

Anonymous said...

I've been a stepmom for my now 12-year old stepson for 3 years now, and it's just starting to get easier. Discipline is the hardest part, especially since I'm home with him during the days in the summer. I have to set boundaries and enforce consequences, but it started out really hard. I didn't feel like any relation to him in the beginning either, so that genuine love wasn't there. Thankfully I'm a teacher, so I tried treating him as one of my students, and that seemed to help. He knows I care for them and love them as God's children, and our relationship seems to have grown because of it.

Anonymous said...

This stepparenting thing is much harder than I expected. Although things aren't just terrible, I am so out of my element. My stepdaughter is 15 and her dad was a widower when we met. She is sweet to me most of the time, but she doesn't look to me for any direction. Even when I am home with her, she calls her dad for advice and instruction. To further complicate matters, everyone considered her mother a saint and I am living in the shadow of her life and influence. Plus, everyone is watching me to make sure I am good to my stepdaughter and husband. My stepdaughter has been pampered and protected so much that she is behind in learning common sense things she should have learned some time ago. Her dad is a very giving man, but he has babied her and I can't figure out whether or not he wants her to grow up. When I try to get him to treat her as the 15-year old she is, he thinks I am being too harsh and critical. I give them both time and space occasionally, since their relationship existed before I came along. However, she is reluctant to give the same courtesy to me. She rarely goes and does things with her friends and when we finally do get some time alone out of town, she calls constantly. I understand her dad is her only living parent, but it frustrates me since he and I need to have some alone time. Once again, he doesn't understand my point of view. I'm dealing with a pampered child and a dad/daughter relationship with an iron-clad bond. I pray about it, but find my feelings (usually unexpressed) are driving a wedge between me and my husband. Anyone been there? Any suggestions?

Anonymous said...

to Anonomous about tight father/daughter team,

I am in the same boat. There is more of a relationship with my husband and his daughter then between my husband and myself it seems. When asked something about what he wanted done for the wedding he replied to the person we "my daughter and myself" prefer it THIS way.. leaving my opinion out on our wedding plans!

I have learned to bide my time, vent with friends but to hold my ground as well. I am not a third party. If she wants to know something, she has to ask me directly and politely.. Not ask dad to ask me etc.. When she calls and he runs to see what she wants.. I do comment on the inappropriateness of it all. I have also shown him scripture expressing the need for the marriage to be US first, kids second etc..

My ex husband responded to others telling him what he was doing was wrong.. Though I am not all that comfortable with having friends from church approach my husband to explain that my point of view is valid and biblically correct. *even though the bible says to deal with it that way* To me it feels like I am complaining to them and spreading our baggage to the public.

Anonymous said...

Step parenting is the most challenging thing I can think of. I'm a stepmom of 3, the oldest 15. Defiance dominates his behavior. He chooses to live with my husband and myself over his mother and her husband, whom he admits treated him badly. I think he takes his anger at her out of me. His dad works long hours, so I am left to "discipline" a 15 year old boy who does his best to ignore me. Anger is not as easy to control as the writer of this article describes. I sacrifice time with my own two children who are six and 9 in order to "parent" my step son. Dad has been slow to see how his son has worn me down, and although he is the disciplinarian, I don't think he "gets it".

liz said...

I have read some of the comments and found that I can identify with bits and pieces of many. My situation is a little different though. I am stepmom to a 16 year old girl (have been with her dad for 7 years now, married for 3). We too have a child now, but it's the "step" portion of our lives that is by far the most challenging for us.

This is the primary issue. It's about a lack of support and understanding, coupled with unrealistic expectations on the part of my husband. I must admit that he too feels misunderstood, but since I am not at liberty to speak for him, I'll just share my side.

His daughter is in so many ways a great girl. My problem is with dad. Here's our situation...my husband doesn't have much time with his daughter, as she spends the majority of her time with her mom. In turn he spends a lot of time nurturing that relationship whenever possible. Understandable really. The problem lies in the fact that he devotes very little of himself toward nurturing our relationship as a family (blended as it may be). Short before our child was born I expressed concern about this, fearing that we would eventually become divided. Now, 2 years later, I regret to say that in many ways I was right. This makes me very sad inside, and in turn I find myself withdrawing to escape feeling of frustration and rejection.

Unfortunately, my husband responded very negatively 2 years ago, as he still does today. In a nut shell, his expectations (very high I might add) revolve around my relationship with his daughter directly (one-on-one), while mine center more around our family as a whole. He wants to see more "positive behaviors" (for example, no discipline on my behalf, or concerns about friends, staying out late, boys, drugs, etc - the typical teenage stuff). In effect, he's looking for more of a Grandmother-type figure for his daughter. He doesn't like rocking the boat, and adhers to a more "hear no evil, see no evil" type approach to parenting. He has never seen my concerns as being caring or watchful. Instead he sees them as a personal attack on his daughter, and thus becomes VERY protective and defensive. It should be noted though that this is completely the opposite of his parenting approach with our child. In this respect we are pretty much on the same page and work well as a team. Go figure!

On the other hand, I often feel akward or uncomfortable in on-on-one type situations with his daughter. For one, I feel I am taking time away from "their" visit, something they both want (again, very understandable), I feel as though my actions and words are being monitored/judged by my protective husband, and I am not always sure I feel as though she (my husband's daughter) really wants to be with me anyway. I worry that , when she doesshe's just being nice; she can be a pleaser. My husbands response to this...I'm just making up excuses.

I'm just wondering if there's anyone else out there with a similar situation? Unfortunately (or not, depending on how you look at it), none of our friends have blended families, making it very hard to talk about. I am beginning to feel very isolated, drowning in my own failure and lack of experience as a "step".

liz said...

I have read some of the comments and found that I can identify with bits and pieces of many. My situation is a little different though. I am stepmom to a 16 year old girl (have been with her dad for 7 years now, married for 3). We too have a child now, but it's the "step" portion of our lives that is by far the most challenging for us.

This is the primary issue. It's about a lack of support and understanding, coupled with unrealistic expectations on the part of my husband. I must admit that he too feels misunderstood, but since I am not at liberty to speak for him, I'll just share my side.

His daughter is in so many ways a great girl. My problem is with dad. Here's our situation...my husband doesn't have much time with his daughter, as she spends the majority of her time with her mom. In turn he spends a lot of time nurturing that relationship whenever possible. Understandable really. The problem lies in the fact that he devotes very little of himself toward nurturing our relationship as a family (blended as it may be). Short before our child was born I expressed concern about this, fearing that we would eventually become divided. Now, 2 years later, I regret to say that in many ways I was right. This makes me very sad inside, and in turn I find myself withdrawing to escape feeling of frustration and rejection.

Unfortunately, my husband responded very negatively 2 years ago, as he still does today. In a nut shell, his expectations (very high I might add) revolve around my relationship with his daughter directly (one-on-one), while mine center more around our family as a whole. He wants to see more "positive behaviors" (for example, no discipline on my behalf, or concerns about friends, staying out late, boys, drugs, etc - the typical teenage stuff). In effect, he's looking for more of a Grandmother-type figure for his daughter. He doesn't like rocking the boat, and adhers to a more "hear no evil, see no evil" type approach to parenting. He has never seen my concerns as being caring or watchful. Instead he sees them as a personal attack on his daughter, and thus becomes VERY protective and defensive. It should be noted though that this is completely the opposite of his parenting approach with our child. In this respect we are pretty much on the same page and work well as a team. Go figure!

On the other hand, I often feel akward or uncomfortable in on-on-one type situations with his daughter. For one, I feel I am taking time away from "their" visit, something they both want (again, very understandable), I feel as though my actions and words are being monitored/judged by my protective husband, and I am not always sure I feel as though she (my husband's daughter) really wants to be with me anyway. I worry that , when she doesshe's just being nice; she can be a pleaser. My husbands response to this...I'm just making up excuses.

I'm just wondering if there's anyone else out there with a similar situation? Unfortunately (or not, depending on how you look at it), none of our friends have blended families, making it very hard to talk about. I am beginning to feel very isolated, drowning in my own failure and lack of experience as a "step".

Anonymous said...

I am a mother dealing with the stepmother of my daughter. I feel she has crossed the line many times but this time I am done. She has decided over the 3 week summer vacation they have had my daughter for that my daughter is no longer able to call her by her name. She has to call her mommy, or mrs. first name, or mrs. last name. she told my daughter that she is not her friend so she is no longer able to call her by her actual name. I feel like my child is in boot camp over their, I think that this is rediculous and disrespectful to my child and me. She also has no problem talking trash to ME,( the real mother!) when ever she feels like it. My childs father lets this go on. I cant understand why he never takes his childs side. Please someone let me know if they think I am mad for no reason or if I am in the right being a little peeved at the new rules stepmom is trying to create!!

Anonymous said...

Dear Bio Mom,
I am the stepmom of a 5 year old and have been married for less than a year but living as a family for more than 2 years. I am by no means an expert. What I can say from my own experience is that it is very tough situation. I want to be the best person I can for my stepson but am constantly reminded by him I am not his mom. He tells me every day how much he misses her. How I don't do what she does. How he'd rather be at her house. How things belong at her house. I really feel tired. I am not sure what's going on at your exhusbands house but I suspect that your daughter could be having some of that dialogue with someone who is washing her clothes, cooking her meals, driving her around all the while being told she is a subpar stand-in. If she's tried the friend route and is still on that path she is probably ready to take it back to just basics. Give me the respect I deserve as an adult period. I know it may seem the stepmother is being tough but I think there is no way to describe how tough it is on the stepmom either. I think in my situation I approach from all sorts of angles and always come back to I am just not his mom, not his friend, not someone he prefers at all, so it really makes me feel drained. I don't know what's transpired but you should really try to get the full story I think. It will shed some light. I know the biomom in my situation is very quick to excuse his tantrums and sometimes encourage them. I think it's always good to feel like you're missed but it's also sad that the stepparent has to feel like they're in the way.

Anonymous said...

I married a widower with three young children 7 years ago. I had never been married before and simply never considered myself a "step" mother until a few months ago when somewhere along the line, began using the term. Prior to that, we simply considered me the "second" mom, because the first mom had passed away. This term "stepmother" has really caused lots of problems-- I feel second rate, the outsider, and a hired hand. There is nothing "Step" or halfway about the job I'm doing raising these kids or the huge responsibility and commitment I have taken on, including handling many crisis situations, life-thrreatening surgeries, and giving up all my "previous life" behind including moving to another state--oh--and having a baby with special needs along the way.
Unfortunately, my husband works very long hours and is not around much to support me or help with discipline. I feel at a dead end; in a no win situation. Do I just stick it out until they are all out of college and moved away? what can I do to make it a full and rewarding life?

Anonymous said...

I can't even tell you how wonderful it is to hear stories from other step-mothers, describing how they feel, what happens in thier home and lack of support and understanding from the husband/bio-father. I'm also a step mom of 2 and bio to 3, all boys. My oldest 2 are out, and I now have 2 teenage stepsons. I don't really care for the term step...They are good kids, I have never tried to interfer with the raising/disapline of these boys. Don't get me wrong, I do cook dinner, take them to doctors, sign school papers,etc. My husband does not really support me when it comes to correcting them or anything, so I stay out of it. They have a mom that lives close and has them 50% of the time, and if there is something that bothers me, I complain to my husband. We get through it, but I feel like a nobody. On mothers day the boys didn't even say happy mothers day to me, and MY husband was more concerned with making sure their bio-mom was taken care of. Oh well....step moms need thick skin I guess, and lots and lots of prayer. Hardest job you'll ever love? :o) God bless all the stepmoms!!

Anonymous said...

I recently moved in with my boyfriend and his three kids. We've only dated for five months. The oldest is a girl, 10, and the twins, a boy and a girl, just turned 7.
I've been there a month and feel so confused! He has the kids every other week for a week. They are good kids, just out of control. His discipline is on one hand lax and yet other times he flips out and screams at them. They climb the counters to get food, leave the refrigerator open, sneak food in their rooms during the night, and unlock our bedroom door at night hoping to catch us "doing dirty things". When I asked why, they said they hear their mom making "dirty noises."
The oldest wakes us up early in the morning and tells us it's time to get out of bed. The youngest girl burps at the table, spits her food out if she doesn't like it, openly sneezes. My boyfriend laughs at her, which entices her more telling me "he's a guy and that's what guys do." And lately she and the oldest are taking my things. My pillow that I sleep with, perfume, clothes, shoes, computer, whatever they feel like. On the other hand, they always want to hang out with me which is nice, but then my boyfriend disappears. I don't get much done and am going to school with no time to study when they're there. The other confusing thing is that they want to sleep with me or cuddle on the couch.

My boyfriend told me I'm being to hard on them. I don't hit, yell, verbally abuse, or ground them. I guess I'm trying too hard to teach them manners. I'm stern. I told them they must ask when using my things and to please try to remember to return them. He has admitted that he is overwhelmed too.
I'm six years older than him (I'm almost 40), divorced years ago, with no children.
While I've been reading these articles, I wonder how to back up and relax with the discipline?
They talk about their mother all the time and I respect that. I encourage them and try to listen. She had an affair with a coworker and is living with him now. He's terribly jealous and resentful of my boyfriend to the point where the ex-wife/mom is not allowed to call him nor will he let the children call their dad.
Many of you write very well, any ideas or helpful advice?

Anonymous said...

I wrote previously ("I'm dealing with a pampered child and a dad/daughter relationship with an iron-clad bond") and have made some new discoveries and progress. God has really helped me through my prayers and those of my mom and a close friend. Improvement comes in baby steps and develops my patience and faith in God. I try to pray about handling each situation that arises or requires a serious conversation with my husband. He is good to me and listens to my concerns when I present it in the right manner and don't attack him or his kids. In addition, he has agreed to go to a "Successful Stepfamily" conference with me. I think we both will benefit from receiving advice and encouragement. That, in turn, should help us to feel like we are a normal stepfamily that is making progress, however slow that might be. God will bless our efforts to do good, even when we don't want to or are too tired or don't see the point. I await His direction and guidance and trust Him to make us a family.

Some verses that help me:

Galatians 6:9
Ephesians 3:20
Philippians 2:3-4
Philippians 4:6-7
Philippians 4:13

I would be happy to share my thoughts about the conference, if anyone is interested.

Yes, God bless all the stepmoms.....and their families!

Anonymous said...

Wow... after reading these comments, I have to say that I feel really lucky and very blessed. I have 2 stepkids (a boy just turning 20 and a girl 18) and 2 bio kids (a girl 19 and a boy 4). My husband and I have been together since our older kids were just 3, 4, and 4 years old. They have always gotten along great (even better than some bio brothers and sisters) and my husband and I each get along well with our stepkids. And our 4-year-old son is a blessing for all of us. He adores his older brother and sisters and we all adore him. I think the reason our blended family has worked is first of all PRAYER and second of all COMMITMENT and TIME. My husband and I are very supportive of our family. We talked long before we decided to get married about how we would deal with a blended family. We took our time. We were together 5 years before we built a house and 3 more years (of living together) before we got married. And we still waited another 3 years before having a child of our own that would be a part of all of us. I have to say after 15+ years of going through this, it has been worth it! I have been on both sides... I am a mom and a stepmom. I deal with a mom and a stepmom on the other sides. I admit it's really hard at times. You truly do need support and commitment. I have to work at it. But for those of you just getting into step-relationships, make sure it's what you really want and are willing to make an effort because it's not easy. But it's definitely worth it!

kdwhorses said...

For me personally me and my step son have a great relationship. I am involved with him in football, rodeo, etc. I have never asked to be called mom-he calls me by my first name sometimes, but also mom. We had a rough start before me and his Dad got married. But through lots of prayer we have a great bond. The key to step parenting I think is patience, prayer and time. You can do it and it is very rewarding!

Anonymous said...

I have a question for everyone... My husband's ex constantly tells me that I am just my stepdaughter's "friend". Do you agree with this?? My husband and I have my stepdaughter 80% of the time. I am the one who is with her in the afternoons right after school - when I'm off work. I drive her everywhere, do her laundry, cook her favorite meals, talk to her about everything, host parties, etc. I don't try to do the "firsts" like first bra, etc. - but I feel like so much more than a friend to her. I'm certainly not her mother even though she's here so much, but I'm not just her friend either. I have 3 biological kids, and I treat all of them the same way. My husband treats these 3 the same way he treats his biological daughter. This came to a head last week when my stepdaughter's mom asked the coach to remove my name from the team roster because it "just wasn't necessary". She said that only her name and contact info, as well as that of my husband's, should be included. She said, "You're just her friend." I take offense at this since I am with my stepdaughter 80% of the time and have a great, parental-like relationship with her. What does everyone think???

KaHigRN said...

I am not a stepmom, but I have been dealing with a stepmom. First, I don't think you are just a friend to your stepdaughter. But you also, like you said, aren't her mother. It sounds to me her biomom is feeling threatened by you and feeling pushed aside by all you are doing for her daughter and all she ISN"T doing for her.

I know I get very mad when my ex's new wife tries to tell my girls what to do when all of us are all together (like at a soccer game). She tends to forget that I am there, the girls are with ME and I DO NOT need her help in parenting my girls. I try REALLY hard to bite my tongue because I know she only means well and the kids aren't too bothered by it. I'm sure if I made a big deal out of it then the kids would be more upset.

My advice would be to let the biomom's comments go in one ear and out the other. Just realize that she most likely wishes she could be doing all the things you are doing for her daughter. It is very hard for both biomoms AND stepmoms. Sometimes we both have to let things just be.

Sarah said...

I am going on three years as a stepparent of four - 10 through 16 year olds. Our relationship ebbs and flows like most but I regularly struggle with feelings of worth and purpose. They live mostly with their mom (supermom) and step-dad (super by association, who has his own child)and they do enjoy their dad, but me - what exactly do they do with me? I have never been married and I'm 36. I have no children of my own which I belive makes my feelings of not fitting in that much worse. I have never wanted a child before - I think I have just been afraid since my own homelife was pretty dysfunctional. My husband is placing no pressure on me either way. He wants what I want. I feel though that these reasons to have a child are not good motivations. So, I don't really know what I want. Are there any bio-child-less step-moms out there? I'd appreciate any comments and help with persepctive. I have felt very alone.

Anonymous said...

I have a stepmother, and I will try and explain what goes on inside the head of a child's mind (I'm 31) of a parent who has divorced and remarried a new woman. In my case, my stepmom moved in with us when I was 17 or so, therefore it was quite the transition for me and my brother. I was and still am happy that my dad found someone he loves and that loves him, but my stepmom has verbally attacked myself, my mom, my uncle, and my brother and sister. Basically, she gets very angry at one of us for something minor, and is very aggressive with us. She says mean, hurtful comments, with the intent on making myself or the other person cry or break down, then says she doesnt hold grudges so why should we? I realise it must be hard to be a stepmom or parent, but it is very difficult for a child to see their parent become "different' with another person. In the end, if you treat your stepchildren respectfully but firmly, this is key. I think that if the step parent doesnt act too controlling with the bioparent, this helps too. Good luck stepparents out there it can work, just realise that children are used to things and it takes time to adjust.

Anonymous said...

I am a step-mother of 2 kids. The kids have different mothers but I have a good relationship with both kids. Their mothers really do not like me because the kids love spending time with my husband and I. I can not help that the kids toke to me very quickly. I have been there for these kids for 9 years now. My step-kids' mothers say they do not have a problem with me but they ALWAYS seem to put me in the middle.
MY husband has been put in a very uncomfortable position. His children's mothers are trying to make him chose between the kids and me. what should I do.

Anonymous said...

In response to "liz said," I'm right with you. I am stepmother of two teenage girls (16 and 14) my husband and I have another girl together, age 3, and right now all children are living with us. We have been married now for seven years, together for 9. I don't really want to share a lot of info, but I just didn't want you to think you were alone in feeling pushed out of your own house. I feel so alone sometimes, too, and sort of like an ugly middle aged Cinderella. I drive them wherever they need and want to go, sew, cook, clean up after them, clean the house, the works, but when I ask them to do something little, the answer is most of the time a "no." When I get angry about anything, my husband tells me I'm being unreasonable, and usually gets angry at me. It's a no - win situation right now. I'm not allowed to say anything against his daughters, but I'm supposed to act happy no matter how I'm being treated. I almost left the other night, but it upset my daughter so bad, I will never do it again. I really don't want to leave. I love my husband very much, and he is a great guy, but I know he is just scared of losing them again. I just wish we could talk about problems and come to a compromise without it always escalating into an enormous fight. I feel like it almost has to get to that point for him to even realize that something needs to change. And I desperately need a break from the teenagers. I do love them - I've known them since they were 5 and 7, but I almost feel like my husband's giving in to them all the time not only destroying our husband and wife relationship, but making it impossible for the girls and me to like each other, causing me to resent them. It's always 3 against 1 while the toddler watches.
As far as discipline goes, the girls have raised themselves for the last 8 years because mommy parties very hard, and so there is a lot to be desired, but my pastor told me just to think of them as roommates. Believe it or not, it has helped tremendously since I stopped trying to be their mother and began letting my husband do ALL of the disciplining. Having my daughter made me realize that I am not their mother, and never will be. I do want to at least be a friend, if my husband will stop teaching them that I am the enemy.
I know all of this complaining is wrong according to God. I know this suffering is shaping me into the person God wants me to be. The only thing that has gotten me through this is Jesus Christ. I pray throughout the day and read the Bible as much as I can. I ask the Lord to put the name of the book he wants me to read in my mind, and 99% of the time, the book is relevant to what is going on in our lives. If it weren't for God, I'd have been divorced years ago. If I were where I needed to be I wouldn't be typing this. I just want you to know you aren't the only one hanging by a string.
To the girl with the boyfriend with kids, I would say, remember that you really aren't their mother. To them you are just some woman off the street, as I was to my daughters. It may take years for them to warm up to you, and depending on the situation, they may never. Also, if your husband does not love God the way you do, run the other way.

Anonymous said...

My situation is different. I am a former step-father, now remarried to a woman who is step-mother to my 14 year old biological son.

I remember when I started as a Step father in my first marriage (this was a long time ago) I made a lot of efforts to bond with my step son, doing father-son type activities together. It worked out well for a while, although our relationship drifted apart and pretty much ended 10 years later (5 years after I separated from his mom). That was hard.

But my real concern is how my current wife feels about my own biological son. He is with us every two weeks and holidays, and I have been with my wife for 7 years. I try so hard to arrange family activities for the 3 of us and spend quality time together. My son was always up for this - he threw his arms around my wife the first time he saw her. However, she does not like spending time with him. We argue a lot about me wanting her to join us for walks, movies, shopping, whatever. But usually the best I can get is that we eat together. She usually refuses to go on family vacations together, or if we do she isolates herself from us. I remember that early on there were times when she would walk on the opposite side of the road from the two of us, as if she were ashamed to be associated with us. I see my son drifting farther and farther from her, as he gets older and realizes better what is going on.

My son and I remain close as ever, but we need to go off and do things together while my wife pursues her interests and basically waits for my son to go so we can do things together.

Somehow I just assumed that my wife would want to bond with her step-son, just has I had tried to do in my first marriage. I thought that usually the problem was more with kids rejecting their step-parents, not the other way around (notwithstanding fairy tales).

Otherwise my wife is lovely and my extended family likes her. She says her coldness toward my son is because my X is so difficult (legal problems etc), she does not feel comfortable with her son. This does not seem fair to me.

It breaks my heart. I love my son and my wife but after 7 years of trying I feel torn in two and despair of ever feeling like a happy family together. I am ready to give up trying.

Anonymous said...

My situation is different. I am a former step-father, now remarried to a woman who is step-mother to my 14 year old biological son.

I remember when I started as a Step father in my first marriage (this was a long time ago) I made a lot of efforts to bond with my step son, doing father-son type activities together. It worked out well for a while, although our relationship drifted apart and pretty much ended 10 years later (5 years after I separated from his mom). That was hard.

But my real concern is how my current wife feels about my own biological son. He is with us every two weeks and holidays, and I have been with my wife for 7 years. I try so hard to arrange family activities for the 3 of us and spend quality time together. My son was always up for this - he threw his arms around my wife the first time he saw her. However, she does not like spending time with him. We argue a lot about me wanting her to join us for walks, movies, shopping, whatever. But usually the best I can get is that we eat together. She usually refuses to go on family vacations together, or if we do she isolates herself from us. I remember that early on there were times when she would walk on the opposite side of the road from the two of us, as if she were ashamed to be associated with us. I see my son drifting farther and farther from her, as he gets older and realizes better what is going on.

My son and I remain close as ever, but we need to go off and do things together while my wife pursues her interests and basically waits for my son to go so we can do things together.

Somehow I just assumed that my wife would want to bond with her step-son, just has I had tried to do in my first marriage. I thought that usually the problem was more with kids rejecting their step-parents, not the other way around (notwithstanding fairy tales).

Otherwise my wife is lovely and my extended family likes her. She says her coldness toward my son is because my X is so difficult (legal problems etc), she does not feel comfortable with her son. This does not seem fair to me.

It breaks my heart. I love my son and my wife but after 7 years of trying I feel torn in two and despair of ever feeling like a happy family together. I am ready to give up trying.

Anonymous said...

My ex partner is getting remarried and insists on our children calling her step mum, I don't think this is right as I am here an involved in every aspect of my childrens lives, I feel a step mum can only be called such in the absence of the bio mother, my chldren are so confused by this.
Anyone have any ideas on this?

Anonymous said...

I know it is hard for step mothers, but it is hard for the kids too. I am a 21 year old girl who has had to deal with her step mom for nine years now. and my mother passed away ten years ago. doesnt sound right does it'? my dad remarried a year after my mom passed away. my whole life flipped upside down. i moved to a different town and suddenly had a new mom and new siblings(her kids). I was confused and lost and my dad did nothing but everything she wanted. My dads lack of confidence and lack of communication has caused me so much pain, and i will never get over it. I wouldnt say i "dislike" my step mom, but every time i think about why im not happy at home.. leads back to her. and Maybe i wouldnt like anyone who my dad married, i dont know. and i dont know for sure what im saying is the truth, but it is in fact that i do feel forgotten by my dad. i feel like my "step mom" rules everything in my house hold. Ifeel like things arent fair. i feel like she is maniluaptive. and doesnt care about my feelings. i feel like she wishes my dad didnt have kids. trust me, my step mom and i have gotten into plenty of fights. many ending with nasty emails threatening me that she will leave my dad, and that she is jealous of the relationship my dad and ihave and that we arent allowed to do things without her. for example...my step mom hates fishing... and sports.and has nothing in common with my dad or me or my family. and now shes trying to go fishgin with me and my dad! is she kidding? anyways.. my family used to go to disneyland every year because its my favorite place.. and ever since she came into our family we havent been once together. And my favorite family tradtion is chirstmas morning and shes jewish. ya she comes to christmas morning,,, but she just complains about it and hates it. i just dont understand why my dad married her. he didnt even date one other person besdies her after my mom died. its like the first girl that said hi to my dad he married. i just think my dad didnt realize what he was getting himself into and regret it now, but it is so far into deep with her and to stuborn to admitt his mistakes and really doesnt want to be alone. all in all....its not just the step kids causing the problems. it does both ways. i just keep reminding my dad it will never be the perfect happy family we used to be so he needs to stop having those expectations.

Anonymous said...

Many people say that a step parent should not try to take the place of the biological parent but in many aspects I disagree. I am 19 and have been living with my step mom and my dad since I was 8. In the beginning there was the huge custody battle and weekends with my real mom etc that was to be expected but after all of that went away I was urning for a mom. A real mom. That would care for me as a mom should. I can say right now that I really don't know what that feels like. I went from a neglectful mom to a wreck step mom. I want a women that treats me like her child and is proud of me as if I was her own. I just joined the Airforce two days ago and I leave for basic in April. As soon as I got home and my dad told me how proud he was of me yet my step mom went off on a rant about how I was going into the Reserves and it doesn't count and how I am going to end up just like my father. She often talks bad about my real family (everyone from my mom to my grandparents.) right to my face. And she just loves to throw her son in my face. My step brother and I get along alright I guess. But he is 29 and still living at home. And everything I do get's reported to my step mom. My step mom and dad often get in fights about me then she blames me for causing it. I have put up with this for 11 years now and I can not wait to leave the house. My best advice for you step mothers is to treat your child like your own. It will take patience and time but it is worth it. You don't want your step child to grow up and say they don't know what it is like to have a mother, do you?

adventurechick said...

My husband and I got married 6 months ago. I'm 38. He's 35. He has a son who's almost 3. Husband and bio mom had a short term dating relationship. Bio mom is a nightmare, has rage/anger/control issues. She had supervised visits for a period of time. She's had unsupervised overnights for the past 9 months. My husband has been the sole caretaker and only stable person in his son's short life.
I moved from the east coast to the midwest to be with my husband and step son a year ago.

My step son and I have tried to bond over the last year. We play together but that's about it. I do not put him to bed/get him up, do not change diapers, do not pickup/dropoff at playschool, do not dress him, make him meals or anything else even though I have offered to do these things countless times. I think my husband is so used to it being just him and his son and he has told me he doesn't want me to feel like I'm a babysitter. I have told him countless times that I am here now, a part of this family and that I can do these things also because it will strengthen my relationship with my step son.

My husband just started a new job which means less face time with his son. I am home looking for work or at the gym. I know no one here. I used to think the lonliest time for me was during the day, but it's lately become when my husband and step son come home.

My step son has been rejecting me. He doesn't want me to get him anything he asks for, only daddy can. He no longer wants me in his room at night to read stories or sing songs. Only daddy can. He will get up to go sit with his dad and interact with him and leave me sitting by myself. He refuses to hug me. He refuses to say good bye to me before he goes to school or to see his mom. He recently said, "mommy said you're bad." I knew this was coming as she has often called my husband names, yelled and screamed at him in front of their son during transfers. She denies everything of course.

So I feel rejected, excluded, like I am so alone. I have sat my husband down several times to talk about these issues. He tells me I'm the adult. How can a 3 year old hurt my feelings when he can't understand "intentions?" So I feel like my feelings are not validated. And nothing has changed as a result of those conversations. I've come to dread my step son coming home. When he does come hom I put on a smile and try to engage him and play with him, whatever he wants to do. But I have been getting the firm "NO!" Only daddy can. Over the past year, I have only been alone with my step son for about an hour. His dad is super dad and I am nothing. Except lonely, feeling like there's no way I can break into the father-son bond and truly be a part of this family.

Anonymous said...

I think being a stepmother is often helped by how your husband sets the stage for you. If your husbands kids see how happy dad is it will pave the way. My stepchildren are are teenagers so not as depedent, though it is still hard and you must feel your path, offering love and support without stepping the boundry it is wonderful to have them excited about your future as family

Anonymous said...

I feel for all of you, step parents and step children alike. I agree with the post-er who said that the Bio parent needs to set the stage for the new spouse or significant other. Unfortunately that is not often the case.

I'm getting ready to have "the talk" with my boyfriend to end our 4 1/2 year reationship. He has four children from two different marriages. In each set, there is a golden child (one who can do no wrong) and a scapegoat. The two favored children, his oldest and youngest daughters (ages 32 and 14), never really accepted me. They each enjoy special time with their dad, including vacations together.

I have a 13 year old daughter who was warm and accepting from day one. We would get together with bf and his youngest daughter thinking the two would hit it off, being so close in age. Each time, my daughter and I were blatantly ignored. She would literally wedge herself between us and her dad, turn her back to us, cozy up to her father and speak with him as if we weren't there. If my daughter spoke to her she simply wouldnt respond. It was so uncomfortable and painful to see my daughter treated so coldly that i decided it was best for us to limit our time with her to gatherings involving the entire family.

The 32 year old isn't much better. She has canceled on every single plan bf and I made with her. She has lied, muttered underhanded comments and feigned innocence when called on it...in a nutshell, her behavior has been textbook passive aggressive. I get that she may have felt threatened - she took on a surrogate spouse role as her dad and stepmom's relationship deteriorated, and she and her dad have a weird sexual undercurrent. I dont think there was physical incest, but emotionally they are very close.

I understand how difficult it was for them to accept a new woman into their dad's life. I understood that they may have felt displaced and resentful. I gave them time and space to adjust. However, the behavior was and is unacceptable. Its OK to have negative feelings but those feelings can be expressed in a way that causes the least amount of pain for ourselves and others. My bf didn't see it that way.

When I brought up the behaviors to bf, he would get very angry and defensive and accuse me of attacking him and his children. He couldnt take a step back to hear what I was saying and he wouldn't have a heart to heart talk with his daughters to find out what their issues were or to point out the hurtfulness of their behavior.

I wanted the same thing Liz says in her post...to be a cohesive family as much as possible. In the end, what I have is a compartmentalized life with a bf who lives two seperate lives- he sees his two fave girls individually or sometimes the three of them, they vacation together...and those plans never include me. It was this way from the beginning and I didn't have his support in changing things to integrate my daughter and I more fully into his life.

In the end, I realize that this is the way he wanted it. He wants mutually exclusive relationships rather than something inclusive, no matter how much lip service he has given to wanting the same family life that I wanted. And its OK for him to want that. Now that I know, I can make a different choice.

I'll leave with the recommendation to read about emotional incest and verbal abuse. I know they both sound like nasty things that happen in other people's lives, but from reading the posts it sounds like many here are experiencing it, just as I had.

Love and blessings to you all...

Anonymous said...

I feel for all of you, step parents and step children alike. I agree with the post-er who said that the Bio parent needs to set the stage for the new spouse or significant other. Unfortunately that is not often the case.

I'm getting ready to have "the talk" with my boyfriend to end our 4 1/2 year reationship. He has four children from two different marriages. In each set, there is a golden child (one who can do no wrong) and a scapegoat. The two favored children, his oldest and youngest daughters (ages 32 and 14), never really accepted me. They each enjoy special time with their dad, including vacations together.

I have a 13 year old daughter who was warm and accepting from day one. We would get together with bf and his youngest daughter thinking the two would hit it off, being so close in age. Each time, my daughter and I were blatantly ignored. She would literally wedge herself between us and her dad, turn her back to us, cozy up to her father and speak with him as if we weren't there. If my daughter spoke to her she simply wouldnt respond. It was so uncomfortable and painful to see my daughter treated so coldly that i decided it was best for us to limit our time with her to gatherings involving the entire family.

The 32 year old isn't much better. She has canceled on every single plan bf and I made with her. She has lied, muttered underhanded comments and feigned innocence when called on it...in a nutshell, her behavior has been textbook passive aggressive. I get that she may have felt threatened - she took on a surrogate spouse role as her dad and stepmom's relationship deteriorated, and she and her dad have a weird sexual undercurrent. I dont think there was physical incest, but emotionally they are very close.

I understand how difficult it was for them to accept a new woman into their dad's life. I understood that they may have felt displaced and resentful. I gave them time and space to adjust. However, the behavior was and is unacceptable. Its OK to have negative feelings but those feelings can be expressed in a way that causes the least amount of pain for ourselves and others. My bf didn't see it that way.

When I brought up the behaviors to bf, he would get very angry and defensive and accuse me of attacking him and his children. He couldnt take a step back to hear what I was saying and he wouldn't have a heart to heart talk with his daughters to find out what their issues were or to point out the hurtfulness of their behavior.

I wanted the same thing Liz says in her post...to be a cohesive family as much as possible. In the end, what I have is a compartmentalized life with a bf who lives two seperate lives- he sees his two fave girls individually or sometimes the three of them, they vacation together...and those plans never include me. It was this way from the beginning and I didn't have his support in changing things to integrate my daughter and I more fully into his life.

In the end, I realize that this is the way he wanted it. He wants mutually exclusive relationships rather than something inclusive, no matter how much lip service he has given to wanting the same family life that I wanted. And its OK for him to want that. Now that I know, I can make a different choice.

I'll leave with the recommendation to read about emotional incest and verbal abuse. I know they both sound like nasty things that happen in other people's lives, but from reading the posts it sounds like many here are experiencing it, just as I had.

Love and blessings to you all...

Anonymous said...

I am also anStep-mother, I am 25 years old and my husband it's a 43 years old. My step daughter have 5 years old. I have leaving with my husband for 3 years and my step daughter lives with her bio mom. She comes here only every other weekend.
I can say that is not been really easy, but not because my step daughter, is because my husband, I really try so hard to make his daughter happy, but my husband is always watching to make sure that I am not doing anything wrong. The other day I was ready to read some books to my step-daughter and he came into the bedroom with a camera, I don't wanted to be in any picture as I was so tired that they after we came back from the beach, so he said, OK then take me a picture with my daughter the I took 2 pictures and he checked of course and he was so angry because he said that it did ot came good, and to me they were good!! so he always gets angry if I am not behind them taking pictures, but sometimes I am busy or playing with the girl or cooking etc etc.. So I feel very overwhelmed because I always try, to do something diferent when his daughter comes, but I am not sure if he really appreciate it. And of course he said things like he can divorce me but not his daughter or first his daughter and then the rest of the people..

I am not sure what to do with him? any suggestion? Please help :-(

Anonymous said...

My stepmother came into my life when I was five years old. I love my bio mother, depsite her many issues and problems. But she wasn't able to be a mother to me. I was happy when my father got remarried because I wanted a real mother who would love me like my own mother never could.

In the beginning, my stepmom was fine. I remember having birthday parties, and being read stories, and doing things with her. We called her Mom. Then when I was seven, she had my half-sister. Everything changed.

Suddenly, my bio sister and I didn't do things with her anymore.
There weren't any more special outings. She became a stranger. She even started introducing us in public as "her husband's children" when before she had introduced us as her daughters. She became obsessed with HER daughter. And the obsession continues, twenty-one years later.

My bio sister and I found out, years later, that she told her family that "taking us in was the worst mistake she ever made in her life". Do you have any IDEA how WORTHLESS that makes a person feel?

We were also told by a relative (who wasn't supposed to say anything) that nearly all of the presents we ever received for birthdays and Christmas, etc. actually came from my stepmother's parents and her brothers and sisters because my father and stepmother had bought NOTHING for us. So even the times when I thought she was trying to take an interest in us, it was a lie.

My bio sister has two children - my stepmother has never seen them. She says she doesn't want to, since she is not our mother. On my wedding day, she didn't even speak to me. Since the day I have moved out of their house, I have not received a single phone call from her to see if I am alive. For all she cares, I don't exist.

I go to Christmas at my grandmother's every year (who is my stepmother's mother, by the way, and the SWEETEST woman in the world) and watch my stepmother lavish attention on my half sister, and my half sister's ex-boyfriend (who my father and stepmother have guardianship over) and it kills me. I am a grown woman and I still don't understand what I possibly did to earn second-class status in my own family.

I can see the stepmoms' point. It must be difficult to love someone else's children. But instead of feeling loved, I grew up feeling like I was the live-in maid, or some annoying house guest that had to be tolerated until I was eighteen. And to top it off, my father is so besotted with this woman that he has never seen how she treats my sister and I. He thinks we are all one big happy family.

Please don't give up on your stepkids. Try. And if that doesn't work, keep trying. For me.

Anonymous said...

I am atep mom for a 19 year old daughter,with one year six months in marriage. A week after our wedding with my husband, I called a family meeting. I introduced myself formaly to my step-daughter, giving a summary of what kind of a person am I.I also mentioned what kind of life I would like all of us to live. I also gave them a chance and apparently we were on the same path.
My husband told me that,he didn,t ask his daughter to do anything for him except for her to do her washing or prepare food for herself. I then sat down with her telling about the importance of taking care of our home. I told myself I have to be patient because she is not used to it, but steady and surely.After a year , she wrote an email to her Dad saying their relationship has changed and God being good I believe in faimily meetings. She told me that she was told that her Dad will change and she then saw him changed.

I told her that peoplea outside have lot of experiences obout step-families. I asked her to have a positive attitude towards our relationship and not take speculations and assumptions into reallity. Ialso told her to understand that me and her mom are two different human beings. She must take what is good from me/her mom and never discussed any weaknesses of us as her both parents with other people. But I PRAY that I must be a true and genuine mother to her, and fulfill the responsibility of being a parent as God gave to us to make sure we have taught our children what is good or what is wrong. I believe through God's guidance we willbe a happy step-family ever.

CHARLES said...

My wife and I have been married for 23 yrs and she do not think I should allow my grandchildren from a previous marriage to come and stay with us for a few weeks this summer.She thinks since I have returned to work it is a bad idea. In past years my children would come from chicago and stay in the summer, as they got older thing did not go so well with my wife and children, they still respect my wife and they are in there 30's. I love my wife very much and my grandchildren. I need answers and scriptures on the "MISSED RELATIONSHIP" that need to be fixed.

Crissy84 said...

I have found a lot of the previous comments to be so helpful but am wondering if there are any more bio moms with some advice for me. My x-husband's girlfriend has taken on the role of step-mom but as she is a teacher, she is very critical of how I teach my son and she puts a lot of pressure on my 5 year old to know more than he should have to know now. She is very manipulative when her and my x want me to do something and I don't do it. She will tell me that my son will resent me and it's just getting very tiring. Her and my x both chose their careers I feel over my 5 year old as they have moved to a completely different province and won't see him more than a few times a year. Should I really spend every minute concerned that my son will resent me? Should I just give in to everything she wants? She wants to have weekly chats with him online just her....is that necessary? If my son asks me to talk to her then of course I have no problem but should I don't understand why she thinks he will resent me if I don't tell him to talk to her on the phone or computer twice a week. She just seems very controlling and when I don't give in to what she wants she uses my son to get back at me. She will ask me if something she wants to do with him is okay, and before I say yes or no she has already told my son about it so I really can't say no. Any constructive advice would be much appreciated. I want to work with her and lessen the stress and tension, but it seems to me that the only way I can do that is if I just say yes to everything she wants whether I like it or not.

Anonymous said...

although my partner and i have only been together for 5 months this is our second attempt at a relationship, so we know each other well. he has 4 kids: two are adults and one of them (a boy aged 19) lived with him when we started seeing each other. the other 3 (two boys aged 21 and 11 and one girl aged 9) live with their mum.the two youngest come to visit most weekends and, although i refused to become involved in their lives at this early stage in their father's and my relationship, he forced the issue by bringing them with him to visit me one day. i now get on with them all very well. recently the 11yr old decided he wanted to spend more time with his dad so he has moved in. just tonight my partner told me he hoped his son would never move back with his ex and that he had decided to actively encourage him and his daughter to live with him permanently. my partner and i had plans to live together and to move abroad in 5 or so years. although i am happy with the children coming for weekends i am still in shock at my partners decision. i did not react very well and told him that although i cannot stop him from allowing his children to live with him i do not intend to become a full time step mum. i think because i get on so well with the kids he had simply assumed i would be on board with his plans and now he is angry at my reaction. we are in serious danger of allowing this to ruin our relationship but we are at a stalemate. he honestly cannot see that this will bring a seismic change to our lives and plans together and he now says that this is the way it is going to be and i can like it or lump it. i am 50 and have never had or wanted to have children and really do not want to start now. if their mother had died i would perhaps feel differently because my partner would have no choice but to have them live with him. however, he seems to have moved the goalposts on me and refuses to see why i am so upset. i need help to figure this out!!!

Anonymous said...

I am a step-mother of a 7 year old. we have a very strong bond and I will not step in the role of her mother. I am her mentor. Yes, I do discipline her but it is ussually with natural consequences or choices. I will not yell and use my hands. Fear is not any way to treat anyone. I let her come to me and I enjoy our time. Now I'm not saying that evrything is "Fuzzy" all the time. I find when it's not it is usually because the she is trying to say something and does not know how to express it in words. I believe that sometimes she doesn't even know what is going on herself, emotionally. my approach to this is if you want to tell me something lets talk, if you want to treat me badley or having a bad day I am choosing not to hang out with you and you can take some time to yourself. I deserve resspect, just as everyone of us does. try to put your self in their shoes, show some empathy and humility. It is quiet interesting what a child's perspective is. I put it this way it may seem like us step parents are being abused verblly, mentally, even physically from our step children. But they are children, we think we have it hard parenting or being in their life. I believe we have the easy part. we can rationalize the actions and reations of peoples behaviour, they can't. look for the underlying issues, the looks, tones. they might be angrey and we might be the target but are we really the target or is life in a split home where mom and dad don't get along and they have to chose and keep things from mom or dad and feel ashamed to tell their friends their mom and dad aren't together. that this person with my dad is my step mom and not my real mom and..........
All we can do for them is be there, take a walk write a note, enjoy a meal and love them for them.
as for the husbands...well...agin this is their child and no matter how much we feel we should come first we might in some instances but in many that child will. not because he doesn't love you or want to be with you or that he doesn't love his other children that he has had with you.he is safe with you in that family,and to me it's about guilt. GUILT and once they come to terms that the life they chose for themselves and their child could actually be a better one, things won't change for them. abondonment...you never know until you are put in that position how you would act or react to the things they have gone through and a path they chose for their child.
IT SUCKS ALL AROUND!!!!!
make the moments that you have together a choice to make a difference even if it's just a smile and i missed you.
that's all

Anonymous said...

I am a step mother of an 11 year old girl and a 5 year old boy. Both have different mothers. I have been around since the 5 year old was born so naturally we have a really strong bond. We share custody of the 5 year old with his mother and it has been really hard over the years. She is not the easiest to get along with. I have never asked the kids to call me mommy and I respect whatever they look up to me as. The 5 year old hates to go to his mothers house and is always asking to stay longer, he is always welcome but he is not always allowed by bio mom. The 11 year old and I are not so close, her mom lets her run wild and when we get her for visitations she is not allowed to do so here so she does not like her visits. I do not know what to do.

Anonymous said...

I am a bio mom/stepmom. My family(blended family) get alone great. The trick is respect,understanding and communication. I read post from stepmom which said "i cook clean and change diaper etc i shouldnt feel like an outsider...the first thing is acceptance. Accept the fact that you r the step parent no matter what u will always be the step parent....it is what it is.....once u have accepted that u can focus on been the best stepmom u can be stress free....when its the bio father week turn...you are the motherly figure it is your responsibility to do what u can for your step child during your time...ofcourse the step child going to be more attach to there bio mother ...they have grown and heard there mother voice since the begining of birth..respect that the bio mom will be a bit or alot of controlling shes a mother ofcourse shes going to be that way....and for the bio mom get to know the stepmom agree to disagree..u cant raise one person with 2 different methods it get confusion...n that child will end up playing both sides...EVERYBODY NEEDS TO BE ON ONE PAGE....love this child care for this child ...but most important STAY IN YOUR PLACE...We r only human.....i understand the hard work it is to been a stepmom..but thats just it...u can not compete with the bio parent ...so if u cant beat them join them..at the end of the day everyone will feel happy and apart of raising this child

Anonymous said...

I am in a new relationship (10 months) with a man that has an 8-year old daughter. She's a great kid but, I'm thinking about discontinuing the relationship because I don't really want to be a step-mother and I don't want the stress & hassle of an ex-wife who is constantly asking for more money. I already feel the stress and disconnect (between my bf & myself) that happens when his daughter is around or when his ex starts asking him for help or money.

And Sometimes, I want to take the lead in saying, No to the daughter, or teaching her, because he doesn't seem to have the skills or desire to do it. He tries to be the "good parent" because he only sees her 4 days out of the month.

I just taught her how to ride a bike and I didn't even get any acknowledgement or appreciation for that from either of them! Then I feel like I'm overstepping my boundaries. She's a kid and I care for her as a babysitter would but, I don't love her because she's not my kid—there's no bond. And to be honest, that bond that they have, that ends up putting me second—makes me feel jealous. I want to feel happy in life and like I come first. I don't want to be on this roller-coaster all the time.

I'm also concerned that he doesn't want any more children. I want to have a baby and family of my own (I'm 33) but, he says he's undecided about having more kids and might not be able to give me what I want (he's 44). I know myself well enough to know that if I settle for being a step-mother and not a mother...I'm going to end up resenting him and feeling like I wasted my time with this guy.

Well... I guess I just answered my own concerns but, another frame of mind would still be helpful.

Anonymous said...

Move on asap! He'll never change and you will waste precious years trying to change him. Go with your gut you already are smart and answered your own questions!

Anonymous said...

I am a 23 year old mother to a 4 year old andI recently married a man who had 3 children from a pervious marriage ages 9-4. We have only been married a little over a month and have been together for over a year now. I really don't consider my self to be their step mom because I only see them maybe 4 times a month if they decide to come over. It has been a tough ride for us bc there bio mom is always lookin for a reason to complain or want more money. There mother who seems to be a great mother to them is always using them to find out information from us about money and other things. It feels like I have to tip toe around them to make sure they don't go running back to her telling her lies. It has driven a wedge between us and my husband. I don't feel a connection with the childeren bc while they are here they are all nice and then the next week his ex is calling and saying the kids don't like it here or we do things how they want it done. It is very frustrating situation. I treat them all the same including my own son but he seems to favor the oldest. I have told him that I don't think that's a good thing and if we have our own kids I want him to treat them all the same but I don't think he will. He feels like he has to spoil his kids bc they arent there but he doesnt want to do anything if it is just us and my son. I understand that he feels the need to spoil them bc hes not around a lot but I just want the same respect for us too. Any advice would be great. I truely do love him but I just cant live up to what he wants me to be when his children just ignore me when I ask them to do something or to clean up. He expects me to be a mother figure to them but I can't do that when they don't even respect me or our house.

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Nice Post !
Situs Lowongan kerja terbaru dan terpercaya
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Anonymous said...

Im 31, stepmother of 2 girls (5 and 10) They come every weekend for the day and all weekend once a month. we've been together for 18 months. I love him very much but I don't like his daughters. They trash my house, they say nasty things to me, I feel judged by my boyfriend, feel like im an outsider when they're here, whatever I do for them they are ungrateful, rude and not nice kind people and I really don't want to be around them. I don't know what my role is, he is SO defensive of them wheneverI try to discipline them or talk to him about how rubbish they make me feel. is there an answer? can you be a happy step mother? I cant see me ever wanting to see them, their visits are an endurance test for me. Can I change my attitude and actually learn to like them? I don't even like them, let alone love them. Help please, I don't know what to do.

Anonymous said...

I have a husband that is almost 20 years older than me, he has 5 adult kids. So hard to deal with, they are strong willed and rude. They dont just think im thier slave they tell him what to do and tell him what they are doing.He has willed aklmost everything to kids so I feel stabbed in the heart. I am trying to get over it but im not well, and its like no body cares how sick iam. its all about that family im just an intruder and slave, like cinderella!

Anonymous said...

I am the girlfriend and have been living with my boyfriend for 3 years now. We just build a new home together. We have 6 teenagers between us. He has 3 I have 3. We have 4 still at home. We most of the time don't fight unless it's about the kids. When we are without the kids which is not very often, we have such a different relationship.Most of the time at home is my 2 youngest sons and his oldest son. Everything is usually pretty good. Then when his youngest son comes for a visit, everything and everyone changes. He has a smart mouth, and has something to say about whatever anyone says. He doesn's pick up after himself, and he gets a way with it. He uses my kids clothes because he never brings anything. And when he leaves to go back home, he takes their clothes. My two sons tend to go to their friends house most of the time when he is with us or they will go back to their dads. My boyfriends son does no wrong.And he has no respect at all for me or anyone else. He thinks he is being funny. And it makes he and I and me with my relationship with his son frustrating. His other 2 kids we have good relationships. My reasoning for not getting married yet is because of his son. I know my kids may do things that are irritating to my boyfriend too, but they respect him and don't pop off to him.I do try and pick my battles, but it is very hard. There is so much more but can't write everything. What do you think? Need suggestions. We have discussed it many times,. Things never change.

Anonymous said...

I am a step mother of a 10 year old boy. I've been with my husband for 7 years and married 2 years we have a daughter who is 4. My husband just recently got custody due to the mother looking her soon to drinking and driving for the 3rd time. He now lives with Us and it is very hard he puts me down and doesn't listen to me and teaches my daughter to say bad things about me. I try and be loving and I do all the things I do for my daughter and husband like cool wash clean for him but no matter how nice I am he still puts me down. I'm to the point where I don't feel like being nice anymore I'm just so tired and drained with it all. I feel like I do fit in my family anymore. I pray constantly for the Lord to help me

Anonymous said...

To stepmoms that realize the significance of a child's mother's feelings, THANK YOU. I have co-parented three years with my ex-husband's new wife, who is a very nice person with a very poor sense of boundaries. I have parented my kids 85% of their lives alone, so it is very hard to learn how to let go at times. That said, with counseling, I have made tremendous progress. However, it is hard to try to discuss issues with their father to have her in the background communicating her thoughts, really. I don't need to be told how to parent...i am 16 years old and doing it for 25 years. They see the kids once a year...and sorry, I do not and never will view her as my equal. I'm honest enough to admit it and, as a stepmother, I respect my husband's ex. She did a great job and doesn't need my input. I wish I had that kind of respect..and likely, probably won't. So thank you.

Anonymous said...

If I had it to do all over again, I would NEVER marry anyone with children! When I met my husband, he has a daughter by his previous marriage living in the house with him. she stayed with him because she could do what she wanted to do - go figure - he also had another daughter before he got married - I love the oldest but the younger one, wish she would go away - she is 28 years old and 4 kids later - oh what a throne she is in my side - she needs to raise her 4 children and stay away from me and what goes on in my household - if I had it to do over again, I would never marry anyone with children!