(Closed) Step-parenting…

posted 8 years ago in Encore
Post # 3
Member
10851 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2010

I’m a step-mom, but I don’t have my own kids. I agree though, it’s a really really hard job. It’s probably the hardest thing I’ve done in my life. Some days I can hardly wait for Sunday evening to come just so we can have the weekend over with. Other weekends are awesome. It goes back and forth. I get jealous of having to share my time. Fiance works so hard, I don’t get a lot of alone time with him, never mind two full days back to back, so it’s really hard for me to give that up every other weekend. Usually our non-stepson weekends Fiance works…….. It’s really difficult.

I do get worried about how the dynamics will change when we decide to have our own kids. How will my stepson feel about them? Will he be jealous? Will our kids feel neglected on the weekends we have my stepson?

Fiance and I are really honest with each other especially when it comes to issues surrounding my stepson. It doesn’t work to bottle it all up, it literally made me sick. It was awful. So now we talk about all of it very honestly which really helps. I think Fiance hadn’t thought of a lot of things from my point of view/side, so being able to explain “I feel _____ because of ______” is really helpful for our relationship. It helps us as a parenting team and also as a couple outside of being parents.

Post # 4
Member
2634 posts
Sugar bee

I agree that being a step parent is really, REALLY hard.  Especially because the quinessential “wicked stepmother” gets thrown around a lot.  I have two kids and Fiance has two kids and we have to work hard to find a balance.  I will absolutely say there are I feel like he treats his kids more fairly than he treats mine (and it’s probably visa versa as well).

I’d HIGHLY recommend this book about the subject.

Post # 5
Member
814 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2010

we’ve had a very hard time.. i don’t have any kids of my own, and i’m always worried that his son will be treated better than our kids because he is allowed to do whatever he wants when we have him, which would not be the story with our own.. he also feels like i’m attacking his son when i lay down the law, i just don’t inderstand why everyone has to make it more difficult than it needs to be for step-mom’s

Post # 6
Member
10851 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2010

@brittanymichelle: It sounds to me like you and your husband need to come together like more of a parenting team. I mean, you’re the kid’s stepmother, you are also now part of his parenting and upbringing, that includes discipline! Every kid needs boundaries and rules. If every weekend with you guys is a “no holds bar do what you want” type situation, that kid is going to run rampant! Clearly that’s going to be really hard on both of you!

Fiance and I have been really careful to have clear consistent rules for his son, which works really well for us since with FSS’s mom he really doesn’t have rules. Or at least not consistent ones. When he’s with us he really thrives and behaves really well. When he’s with his mother he’s a monster. Part of it could be him wanting to impress us, but I think the larger part of it is having those boundaries. We’re also careful to make sure our weekends together aren’t these huge over the top extravaganza of zoos and movies and trips out to do this and that. We work really hard to have a “normal” at home type life with him rather than building up an expectation of time with Daddy and Bakerella is crazy fun over the top. No one can sustain that.

I think it’s so hard for stepmom’s because everyone feels attacked from every perspective. The bio mom feels like we might replace her in her “mommy” role, or she’s threatened by this other woman in her ex’s life. The dad feels torn between paying attention to his child(ren) and us (the stepmom). I’m sure he also feels like he’s walking on pins and needles to make bio mom happy a lot of the time and wanting to make sure she’s kosher with everything that’s going on. And then there’s us, stepmoms, with all our conflicting issues and emotions that we’re all so familiar with. Who can win in that situation?! The best you can do is just try to get through it and realize you all need to work together as a team for the kid right?

Post # 7
Member
3709 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2011

My FI’s sons are grown ups now…ages 20 and 24. I am 34 so I am less of a step-mom and more of a confidant although I am sure when they have kids, I will be grandma =)….that should be interesting.

My daughter is 12 (13 tomorrow) and we both treat her pretty much the same. Since it’s just been me and her for her whole life (she sees her dad about twice a year) my Fiance is the first “father” that she has ever had so he makes sure to be a good one.

I think because we have pretty much the same approach to parenting, it hasn’t been too much of a transition for us. We are a unit and all of the kids know this so it makes discipline easier.

Post # 9
Member
10851 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2010

@mx4: I get where you’re coming from. I feel the same way about my FSS sometimes. He full well knows how to do certain things (he’s 4-1/2) and will do them with me, but if Fiance is around he needs Daddy to do everything for him. It makes me insane. I think for the bio parent who has their child part time, they try to do everything they can to make that child happy. I mean, they miss out on SO much. And if this is his only child, she really is the apple of his eye. It’s really easy to be jealous of this, I totally totally agree. It sounds though like he has a really great relationship with your kids. So come at this though from the same place you’re coming from, his daughter is not your child. You love her I’m sure, but she’s not your kid. Same goes for your kids and him. He may have a great bond with them, but I’m sure sometimes they get on his nerves and at the end of the day, he doesn’t have that inexplicable genetic bond with them.

I wonder too if it’s an age thing, because my FSS and your stepdaughter sound really similar in terms of annoying habits, LOL! FSS repeats himself a lot like Rainman if you don’t verbally respond. I don’t freaking care if the train went in the shed! Why does that need my response?!

Honestly, I’ve sort of learned to accept my frustration and annoyance. I have good days and bad days with FSS. Usually there are more good days and I’ve figured out activities that I can do with FSS where we can bond and get along. And I totally agree, I’m doing the step parenting thing because I love my fiance, not because I really wanted to have a four year old in my life every other weekend. Sometimes you do things for the people you love even if it’s not the path you would have chosen. My dad said that to me about ten years ago, and now I understand what he meant.

I’m all for honest communication with Fiance when it comes to his son. I’ve told him that I find it hard to share every other weekend since we don’t get a lot of time together, and that I’m jealous of the undivided attention FSS gets from him when I get his phone ringing through dinner, etc. That’s really helped us and it’s given him the opportunity to recognize when I’m feeling frustrated, etc. I would maybe explain to your husband that you’re feeling left out of the situation and jealous of the time he spends doting on her because that’s the core of it. It’s not the child herself, but what she represents in terms of time and relationships.

Feel free to PM me any time, I totally get where you’re coming from. We all need to vent 🙂

Post # 10
Member
153 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: October 2010

@brittanymichelle: I completely agree with you and am in a similar situation. My Fiance tries to be more like a best friend than a father to his 2 daughters. So they have no rules or even a bedtime. So when they stay with us, I lay down the law and don’t let them disrespect me or my Fiance. I do get criticism from my Fiance for this sometimes, but he always backs me up in the moment.

I do really worry about when we have children of our own. I know it will be more of an issue concerning how his current children feel.

I never saw myself as a stepmom and am still trying to get used to the term. I guess I will just talk to my Fiance if I have issues and work through this the best that I can. They will be 18 soon enough! ha.

Post # 11
Member
2538 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: July 2010

As someone who has never remembered her parents being married and just remembered different step-parents (give my parents so credit, they were young teens when they married due to me), if you have any questions on developing a good relationship with your step-kids, let me know. I’ve had good and horrible step-parents.

mx4 – as far as your feelings for your step-daughter, I’ve been in her place. It’s awful. Changing homes, changing rules, changing schedules, changing from only to siblings. Yes, she’s 5 and you’ve raised four children, but that’s not her fault. You knew this when you married your husband and you married him as well as her. It’s a new adjustment for everyone in this situation. And of course your husband treats his biological 5 year old differently than he treats his stepchildren who are older and need less. You probably, from what you say, do the same thing too. It’s not a bad thing; it’s just the way it is. Step-parents treat their biological children different.

As for being resentful of his daughter, be careful. This ruined my Dad’s second marriage. She resented me and constantly made my Dad choose between us (not saying you’d do this. I’m just speaking for experience.) You just got married. Give it some time and you’ll all be able to adjust.

Post # 12
Member
829 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: November 2010

I have a confession… I LOVE my step children but I am so resentful of them. I wish my husband loved ME as much as he did them. I will always be third and I hate it. It is hard to be a Step mom especially with ex drama but hey I guess the price I pay for choosing him and this all of a sudden family. I have no kids myself. I hope one day this feeling will go away.

Post # 13
Member
10851 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2010

@Jizes318: It’s like being in a love triangle isn’t it?! The other person is there, and you just have to deal with it, the person in the middle is stuck… It’s not fair to anyone, but you all have to get along and make it work as best you can. I’m sure things will smooth out over time, I don’t think the adjustment to being a step parent happens overnight, I think it’s an evolving process.

Post # 14
Member
814 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2010

@bakerella: that is sorta our problem, his mothers had no consistent rules and we spend then enitre weekend trying to whip him back into shape.. it’s so frustrating because i act like a mother, and his mother lets him do what he wants, and mostly so does his father unless i really put my foot down and make him enforce the rules.. they don’t understand that what is good for him isn’t always fun, they just want to keep him happy, which is okay, except that fact that cleaning your room, going to bed without a movie and eating dinner with the family pisses him off! lol, so i make the rules really, because his parents don’t realize how important rules really are!

Post # 15
Member
10851 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2010

@brittanymichelle: What’s going to be best for your SS is if you and Darling Husband get on the same page about parenting and rules. It has to be confusing for SS to have three parents with three different parenting styles, and different expectations from all of you. I think you guys need to find a compromise and it’s definitely not fair for you to be “bad cop” all the time. It’s going to cause a big strain on your relationship with SS because you’re going to be the mean one and you’re going to be super stressed all the time. Maybe you and Darling Husband need to sit down one night and come up with some ground rules, etc and start working as a team?

Post # 16
Member
814 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2010

@mx4: i don’t have any of my own children, but i fear that i will also feel this resentment because i resent my step-sons mother… i always feel like the world revolves around her, and it makes it very difficult. she has always made poor decisions in her life and everyone feels bad for her because the father of her 2nd and 3rd children recently passed away from a drug overdose, and i know this sounds mean, but if you don’t want drugs in your kids lives, than don’t get pregnant by someone who does drugs, and the things that he did. i’ve always been very aware of the result of the decisions i make, and she gets all the sympathy because she never thinks about the results and ends up in a bad place and everyone feels bad for her… whew, i don’t ever tell anyone that, but i always feel it!

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