Many on the Encore board are well-adept at this kind of situation and something I know alot about.
I’m a mom and my Fi is a dad. Three between us.
I made it well known to him that I didn’t want to immerse myself 100 percent into “their time” when they came to see his dad. I did not want to see myself as an interference in their time with dad. I slowly became more involved during “their time” as the last 2 years went on.
You have to see things from a childs’ point of view. They’re the ones who didnt’ get a say at all about any of this in their lives. They didnt’ get a chance to vote on does mom and dad divorce. They didn’t get a vote on “do I want mom or dad to date again or remarry”. Nope.
I saw my son go thru something like this when my former husband remarried. Granted, he was cheating and it was literally an add-water kind of marriage and shake, but my son had a difficult time. He had somebody around (the stepmom) who he didn’t really know, and was told “son, this is your stepmom.” and he had to like it or lump it.
I was the one ironically who said to be nice to her, he didn’t want to be at all. I also spent some time (yuck) ad nauseum talking to my ex, to encourage him to have son and dad time alone. Just the two of them. But he refused, and it caused my son to feel left out and have issues with the whole thing.
I know it’s difficult, tryingtobepatient, to have couple time with your Fiance, but you knew he was a dad going into this relationship, just as I know T is a dad going into this also. We sure don’t get as many date nights as two childless partners would, but that’s ok. We took the slow road on this one, and it’s paying off well. HIs kids 100 percent accept me and we have no issues with my son either (he loves him!). It’s a slow process, does take alot of patience, and when you’re married, you will be there full time!
One thing I did was meet up with T on a weekend when his kids were there, meet them all for lunch, and then just make over, be so happy and supportive and say stuff like “Wow, you all are going to have so much fun today. I hope all of you have a wonderful weekend/day with your dad. Can’t wait to see all of you later”. That really worked. My counselor btw, who I worked with after my divorce and saw again a few years ago, said that making demonstrative efforts and being very vocal about how you love and support their relationship with their dad and support them having quality time with their dad will make the ease into becoming a new family just so much simpler.
Much of them accepting and feeling comfy about all of this is perception. If they perceive they have you, a stepmom to be, all supportive and happy about them spending alone time w/dad and then saying how you can’t wait to spend time with them too, it will be perceived quite differently than if you’re not vocal about things.
He’d spend time with his kids for most of the weekend, then on the last day we’d have a night all together where we had dinner, played games, or watched a special movie (family things) so they could feel comfy and ease into things. They don’t feel I am there to steal their dad from them.
(((((tryingtobepatient, Fiance, and kids))))))