(Closed) new life together… with stepchildren. How did you balance?

posted 6 years ago in Family
Post # 5
Member
88 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

You have to plan. FH and I make plans to have some alone time and we also have our kids on a schedule where everyone is in the bed by 9pm which also gives us time alone.

Hope this helped!!!

Post # 6
Member
1697 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

Oh my! it can be easy or it can be a challange, I suggest thinkng about their routines now and trying to keep them as close as possible to what they are. It’s all about structure, keeping things predictable for the boys. have family meetings where expectations for the week are stated. Do they call you mom or are they older? One thing i tell my son who is 12 is that my Fi is not his dad but he is an adult and he enforces my rules. Perhaps look for a support group for blended families in your area? We went to one ( just the adults) before we even got engaged and it helped prep us for a lot.

Post # 7
Member
2442 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: April 2011

Just jump right in.  Kids adjust quicker than adults.  Don’t sit back and wait for things to come around.  You be the woman of your household.  Don’t let them try that “You’re not my real mom.” stuff.  You’re the mom in that household.  End of story.  

You didn’t mention how old the boys are.  If they are older, they will understand your need for some private moments.  If they are younger they will quickly adjust to the new family unit.  You may not get a bunch of alone time but it’s probably a better idea to work at forming routines, traditions, memories, bonding situatons etc. with your new family and not just your new husband.  

Post # 9
Member
2053 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: October 2011

@hecallsmelove: I just married this past October and have two stepsons that are with us about 75% of the time. As others have said, you must plan special time as a couple, special time with each child and special time altogether as a family. If your special time as a couple means you need to pay for a sitter while you two go out to dinner or on a picnic or drive to the park or coast, do it. Find ways to be romantic and playful even if the kids are in your home (sneaking kisses, showing a little pre-show lingerie you will wear later that night!) It is a lot of work but worth it in the end. Do what you can now to prepare by initiating those bonds and making them stronger now. 

I highly recommend the book The Smart Stepmom. It really lays everything out effectively and clearly. No sugar coating, very real. Here is the link off Amazon.com:

http://www.amazon.com/Smart-Stepmom-Practical-Steps-Thrive/dp/0764207024/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1325126987&sr=8-1

This book has helped guide me so very much in so many situations and continues to be a source I turn to as our bonds grow. The content is invaluable. It is not just about your relationship with your stepchildren; it also addresses your relationship with your husband.

I should warn you, though, that there is a slight religious overtone in that there are some references to God peppered throughout and at the end of each chapter a short prayer. (The prayers are written simply in a very natural way.) If you are not religious, though, please, please, please don’t let that dissuade you from benefiting from the book. There are still plenty of good tips and comforts throughout. Good luck and feel free to PM me with any questions any time.

EDIT: I see now that they are 6 and 7. While they may adjust nicely to you now because they are young and already used to you after 3 years, it is possible that once married and they are in your household more often, they may start to act out. They know what is going on and the finality of their father remarrying may hit them hard. It is also true that as stepchildren they may often relive the loss of their family as different events occur in their lives. So, definitely take charge as the lady of the house and be on the lookout to ride the tide, okay? Hang in there!

Post # 11
Member
2442 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: April 2011

I don’t think you NEED a babysitter.  Since the boys are still young, put them to bed and have at home dates with your husband. By The Way teach the boys to knock before entering your bedroom if the door is closed.  That is crucial… in the beginning and for years to come!

Post # 12
Member
7587 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: December 2010

I’m in a very similar situation to you, except I have lived with my bonus son since he was 14 months old, so I had to adjust then. Moving in with them was a HUGE shock! My life instantly changed and boy did I make some mistakes at first. The best part about kids, is they are forgiving and they do actually forget. It’s really trial and error and you’ll figure it out.

Baby sitters are worth it. However, it’s even smarter to find a couple with kids that will trade nights out with you for free. 

I love this site http://www.bonusfamilies.com/index.php

Post # 13
Member
2053 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: October 2011

@hecallsmelove: You’re welcome! I’m glad to hear you’re open to the book. I hear ya on the needed prayers! 😉 You’re right to let your future husband lead as far as discipline goes. It is a difficult dance to do, trying to find where you can fit in and be helpful without stepping on toes.

Of course, family and friends can help with babysitting, and yes, just getting the kids to bed early enough for you two to have a couple hours to yourselves is a great way to have newlywed time on a regular basis. My husband and I can justify getting a sitter as a last resort: we would rather have the odd date night bringing us together and have the money go to a sitter, than to allow life to wear us down when we weren’t watching and have the money go to a counselor someday.

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