5 Rules to Help You Be a Better Stepmom
If you grew up within a stepfamily, then you already know the unique perspective you have going into the role of being a stepmom. In many ways, it can give you a helping hand in better understanding the feelings your children and stepchildren are experiencing. After all, you felt those same feelings when you were a child.
These five rules are never-break laws that can help you navigate your life and become a better stepmother.
1. Never speak negatively about your stepchild’s mother or stepfather in front of them.
As tempting as it may be to make a snide comment or even state facts that could shed negative light on their other set of parents, it’s never a good idea. Your child/stepchild is already dealing with emotional turmoil and feeling torn between parents. Adding negativity or sharing your own personal feelings will only confuse and hurt them.
2. Don’t take it personally when or if your stepchild prefers their bio-parent over you.
It’s natural for a child to prefer a parent or household when their parents are not together. Sometimes this ebbs and flows, sometimes it stays the same. Don’t take it personally, and instead foster your own unique relationship with your child/stepchild. It isn’t a competition and your child/stepchild will love you if you embrace them and love them back.
3. Don’t expect to be a big happy family right away.
Being a blended family comes with its own set of challenges. It’s not going to be perfect. Ever. And it’s not going to be happy right away either. Be patient and stop placing pressure on your family to be a certain way. Stepfamilies are beautiful and happy in their own mixed up way.
4. Never interrogate your stepchild about their visit with their other parent.
Your child/stepchild already deals with loyalty issues. Don’t question them about the happenings at the other home. You should instead be doing your best to communicate with the other parent. Often times this means swallowing your pride and compromising, but keeping the conflict low is best for your child.
5. Remember that becoming a stepparent does not equal instant love for your stepchild.
It’s a big myth that marrying a man with children automatically means you’ll love his children (your stepchildren). Just because you fell in love with him doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll love his children. This is a love that sometimes needs to be fostered, nurtured, and grown.
The biggest lesson to come away from this is: do not put pressure on your child/stepchild or yourself. Each stepfamily is different; some mix together easily and others come with resistance and conflict. Your family is unique and special. These rules can help you to better navigate the feelings that come with being a stepmom as you take on raising your own blended family.
Photo Credit: Holly Sosa
Tags: biodad, biomom, blended family, daughter, family, father, life as a stepfamily, mother, son, step family, stepchildren, stepdad, stepdaughter, stepfamily, stepfather, stepmom, stepmom advice, stepmother, stepson
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I’m Holly, a SoCal Mama with a Michigan heart. A mother in a blended family, I am passionate about normalizing stepmother and stepchildren relationships and bringing awareness to the ever growing blended family lifestyle. I am a lover of holidays, stationery addict, and food is my love language. The way to my heart is through the color lavender and florals. Grab a cozy afghan and visit my blog, OurHollyDays.com. Let’s be friends.