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Avatar universal

My step parent section..

So this is what I have, this space, my ideas, opinions,responses and questions aren't always perfect, but I just want to have this space to say THANK YOU to all of the "step parents". Being a child of divorce and a mother of divorce, I have had "step parents", my kids have had "step parents" and I have been a "step parent"..Its like a world that revolves around "step parents". I noticed awhile back on these boards there are easy ways to upset people. Being a "step parent" with any problem is one way. It can be any problem and the boards blow up and usually "turn" againest the "step parent". It can be from the smallest "how to get my step child to kiss me, to how do I disipline my step child", and before you know it, peoples replies become judgemental. I think it may just be a "group" of elders that had parents that were married forever that don't quite understand the whole "step parent" situation. Sometimes, being a "step parent" is not a choice, sometimes it is, whatever the "step parent" reason is, I think it is just wonderful that there is another person to love our children!!! Our society should be more approving of it because it is the REALITY, not badger the "step parent" for trying to do what a normally responsible/irresponsible biological parent should be doing. Which brings me to why I am leaving this post, if you find that you are a "step parent" frustrated by 'badgers" and you can not find a helpful answer, post your question here, for now, and I with what ever powers I have, will be an easy listener and hoping helpful answer. Yes, I know this is quite a strestch, but I guess Im tired of reading posts where "step parents" dont ever get an answer, and by the time they do, they usually are frustrated and dont post anymore replies. This forum is supposed to be helpful to everyone, and I feel I can be a helper, and I know there are others on here who are very helpful, so give it a try. I want to see what kind of things I can accomplish that are positive. Thank you so much for reading this! Have a nice day!!
64 Responses
Avatar universal
I am so pleased to see someone come to a forum with this kind of attitude.  I am a step-parent and a biological parent.  There is no difference in love for either of my children, however, whenever I have in the past (I stopped trying about 9 years ago) asked a question on a "Parent" forum re: an issue with my son (stepson) I got a great big ration of nastiness of how I should just stay out of it all.  I am a believer of being a parent, period.  I am also an Marriage and family therapist, and would love to be of any help on this forum as well.  Thanks again!
Avatar universal
Awesome, thank you very much. Hey if this takes off like Im hoping it will, maybe I can find out where they actually create the forums, and see if they will add "Step Parents" as its own forum..Yes, parenting  to me is like parenting all the lil munchkins in the world. I just love kids and just want the best for all of them..Ok, add this to your "watch" list and check it out occasionally. Thank you again!!
Avatar universal
I forgot, being a therapist will help. You probaly have some really good advice!!
173939 tn?1333221450
MedHelp already installed the new forum "Divorce and Breakups" which includes custody and co-parenting issues. Check it out - it may be just what you are looking for.
In the other post I supported all step parents that go the extra mile to even just accept children of a previous relationship, regardless of how much time they spend with them. I think a lot of the harsh posters automatically see a new wife as an intruder of a previous family life. In reality it is often the man who is back in the dating game and casually mentions - oh, by the way, I have a few kids... when his new future wife is already emotionally involved. I am not even a stepmom but a biological mother and appreciate what a lot of step parents do. So, good luck on your journey.
As for the full custody issues that keep popping up in any step parent post I want to add my two cents. The biological mother-turned-single mother often has to be a master in time management, providing the family income and being a good parent. Sometimes just squeezing in the simple necessities like clothes shopping or haircuts or the daily bath is a challenge and will be delayed or just not perfect. Of course one could say that mothers-turned-single should not be the ones raising their children and often people are quick on these forums to judge a biological mom as unfit. What hurts is that initially the ex-husband sailed off, often barely interested in the well-being of his kids until one fine day he settles down again with a new wife. And then suddenly there is the perfect family setting without the single-parenting madness and the biological mother always looks like a loser. And then she loses her children in a custody battle? That is just very painful. It takes a lot of maturity and communication among parents and step parents to understand each other`s challenges and to respect the child`s needs and desires. I am glad to say it worked out well for my son but it did not come easy and it certainly took a step mom with a very kind heart.
Avatar universal
Hi, I will check out the "divorce co-parenting" forum, but Im not sure "step parents" should post their because, as you now, problems with divorce are quite negative, and I think that their should be a positive area for "step parents" to write in. Even a "step parent single parenting" section would do. (Thanx for the idea)
I understand the frustration a step parent has, I was and am one. I was also single, I had a 6 year old and a 16 month old at the time, and yes it was hard. I lived and paid rent at a family members house, I took on jobs that I could bring my 16 month old, and I stayed on top of my sons education and had to meet all their needs. It was very hard, but I would not have changed it for the world. Being a single mom helped me learn more appreciatition for the world, and I was able to teach that to my kids. They had fathers involved who took them every other weekend, but at no time did I feel the work I was doing was a reason to have them take my kids. Then I became a step parent, boy I thought I had things nipped in the bud, nope I didnt, it is so easy to lose control of a situation where you have the problem of "out of control" kids. Then bring the mom into the equation, it was like a stirring pot ready to blow. The problem most "step parents" allready have when they decide to make a choice is, the other biological parent that is not in the picture, talking badly about them telling the kids that they dont have to listen to "step parent", the list can go on. So as you call an "intruder" as the step parent, that is really how the step parent feels, because they have "negative" forces surrounding them. However, usually it is the biological parent that is the "intruder" for introducing this negative and hateful way to their children and throwing it back on the "step parent". Exs often go into jealousy, confusion, anger, and use it on their own children which in turn is used on the "step parent". It makes an very unbalanced situation. Then you have this one step parent , doing all the work, and of course as stepparents, we feel as were doing the work alone, it brings us closer to the child and figuring out the needs. A reponsible parent will not teach the child anything, and worse yet, will raise them to think wrong.
Kind hearts and people that focus on children are all around us. This is usually how it goes say  a mom writes in and says her 9 yr old son runs around beating her up. The advice is usually this "Check if he has anger problems, add, take him to a counselor" Fair enough right? Then this my 9 yr old "step son" runs around beating me up, the answer is usually as follows "Well, if he had His Mother and His Father together, maybe he wouldnt do that, children need a stable home, maybe You are the reason he is doing it" See the difference, one little word, and all heck breaks loose.
Responsible peole are going to gripe about irresponsible people, no doubt.It should not be any different if its a parent or a step parent. ANy parent that loves a child and is responsible and takes care of their children be praised!! Even if the are single, step, bio, etc. We need these children to suceed. What is it teaching to the kids if a parent can be irresponsible? In my experience, give an irresponsible parent less responsibilities, and they either become more reponsible after awhile, or they live their life and someone else raises their kids. We need these kids to be responsible and to learn it in any way so when they get older, they dont make the same mistakes. Maybe after all this, marriages will becaome a thing of the future, a divorced family may not be able to teach it, but maybe a family with a step parent where their is love can. Maybe a single mom can be responsible enough and strong enough to teach it to her kids too. My kids have 3 step dads, yes 3!! They get the love of the world and are very lucky.We have had our ups and downs getting through the communication barriers and emotions,but above anything, my kids are happy stable and loved. It has been a rough life for all of us, but we will get through, and if I can make one person smile because they are doing good, then thats what I want to do.
PS, I saw something in your post that made a light bulb go off, you might be some good help over here. You mentioned "communication"! Dah, that is probaly the most important information, anyone could give..Im going to ask Rebecca that and see if it helps. Im happy everything worked out for you and your son, he is lucky to have so much love surrounding him. Thanx for writing in!
Avatar universal
Hey, I read something in Trials reply. Communication! Big word, huge possibilities. Have you been able to communicate with the mother? Can you talk to your husband and she if he can communicate with the mother. Maybe a talk to her about how you feel and her picking up her share when shes supposed to will stop the problem. Ok, let me know!!
Avatar universal
I forgot to add something. Are children of married "whole" families allowed to disrespect and not love their parents? The answer is no. So you are suggesting that you see a problem in "step parent " households, you are seeing that the children do not respect nor love the other "intruder".Well how about this, how about it being a balance, how about if the kids can love and respect a "whole" family they can do the same when there is a "step parent".Kids shouldnt have that choice anyways.It just creates confusion. Really how often do you see kids not receiving the emotional comfort for their sadness and emotional upsets in a "whole" family? I would say alot of times. There is no difference whether the family is whole or blended. The same problems exist, and it is the adults responsibility to take handle and control unwanted actions in a child to shape them into future adults.
282524 tn?1348492612
Yes I called Bri's mom and I was screamed at because she thinks I should do everything for Bri that I do for my 2 boys, that is fine because I do when it is our week but I shouldnt have to on her weeks. And my husband lets her run her mouth and he will just walk away, I cant and wont let her do that to me. I wish I could get along with her mom but she makes it very hard.
13167 tn?1327197724
Here4.  No family is perfect.

No set of parents are perfect.  

What is MOST close to perfect is a loving mother and father who are married and focused on the needs of the children.

What is LEAST likely to be perfect is a man and a woman who aren't married and have separate children all living under the same roof,  although sometimes the kids are passed around so they don't have a 100% home.

Let me tell you what I typically see on a board like this,  and maybe you'll agree this is what you see too.

Bio moms say things like:  my son is small for his age,  and actually probably hyperactive.  He's as sweet as he can be,  though,  and I love him dearly.  I am really worried about how he'll be treated in school when he goes to kindergarten because I guess he has a tendency to have a hard time making friends because he's so bouncy,  and also it's hard to get him to brush his teeth.  I lay awake nights worrying.  HELP.  

step moms say things like:  my stepson is hyper.  He doesn't wash,  and he doesn't have any friends.  He is here every other weekend and the house is in total chaos when he's here.  He's loud,  and bouncy,  and messy.  I'm at the end of my rope,  I want to leave when he's here.  HELP.


Do you ever hear a biomom  write a post like this:

Me and my boyfriend live together and he's the most perfect man I've ever met.  I love him forever,  he's absolutely perfect and we get along great,  he's the man of my dreams.  But when my children visit,  the whole house comes apart.  My children are loud,  and messy,  and have bad table manners and play Nintendo.  They also want to stay up late playing and interrupt our conversations.  They're hard to get to go to bed at night.    My perfect relationship  with my boyfriend is wrecked for me during this time and I'm miserable during their visits.  HELP.  (Do you ever see biomoms saying that,  ever?  Is every other post from a stepmom just like that?)


So do you see what I see?  When a stepmom writes a post describing specific symptoms and asking for help,  or expresses love, and asks for guidance,  I think they get treated very well here.  It's the moms who are irritated and just wish the kids would vanish and stop taking up her time that make my head fly off.  I know some stepmoms are really trying,  and really loving,  and kudos to them.   The complaints I see,  and the outrageous expectations I see,  are more typical.

Best wishes.
13167 tn?1327197724
rebbecca - how would you like to change places with Brianna for a year?

You be her,  and she can be you.

Really imagine it.  Does it sound like a comfortable swap for you - would you like to be in her shoes?

(Please don't answer by saying how much you hate her lazy mother).
282524 tn?1348492612
I lived Bri's life as a child, so what the hell do you really want to know now.  And I turned out pretty damn good and I had a stepmom from hell and I would never do that to Brianna.
152852 tn?1205717026
RockRose wrote:
"...Bio moms say things like:  my son is small for his age,  and actually probably hyperactive.  He's as sweet as he can be,  though,  and I love him dearly.  I am really worried about how he'll be treated in school when he goes to kindergarten because I guess he has a tendency to have a hard time making friends because he's so bouncy,  and also it's hard to get him to brush his teeth.  I lay awake nights worrying.  HELP.  

step moms say things like:  my stepson is hyper.  He doesn't wash,  and he doesn't have any friends.  He is here every other weekend and the house is in total chaos when he's here.  He's loud,  and bouncy,  and messy.  I'm at the end of my rope,  I want to leave when he's here.  HELP.


Do you ever hear a biomom  write a post like this:

Me and my boyfriend live together and he's the most perfect man I've ever met.  I love him forever,  he's absolutely perfect and we get along great,  he's the man of my dreams.  But when my children visit,  the whole house comes apart.  My children are loud,  and messy,  and have bad table manners and play Nintendo.  They also want to stay up late playing and interrupt our conversations.  They're hard to get to go to bed at night.    My perfect relationship  with my boyfriend is wrecked for me during this time and I'm miserable during their visits.  HELP.  (Do you ever see biomoms saying that,  ever?  Is every other post from a stepmom just like that?) ..."

That is so true!  I have seen the odd stepmother post a loving request to help a little one struggling, but it's way, way, way too often the way you described.  It's incredibly sad.
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