Thu 10 Jun 2010
Recently, I had the pleasure of meeting a wonderful woman who is a real inspiration to many. Jessica is the Sassy Single Mamma and she has begun a blog of her own. I so love the way she has embraced her children’s soon to be stepmom and asked her is she would like to write a guest post. I was thrilled when she agreed.
So here is Jessica’s words of wisdom to stepmoms. Please note, her words are from experience as she used to be a stepmom herself. Enjoy!
A stepmother is a very unique breed of woman! She is a woman who has courage and honer running through her huge heart! A heart large enough to let in children she never got to bond with as a baby! She loves her husband’s children but knows she could never say (s)he’s mine. Because of her love, being a stepmother is a never ending battle in her mind.
Never knowing where you truly fit in or what your exact rule is to the stepchild can cause friction in the household! I know so well because I was once a Smom to a little girl. I loved her as my own. When she hurt I hurt, when she was happy my day was brighter. It was hard for me sometimes to step back and remember I’m her stepmom and a mother to her soon to be brother.
Now my rule has changed to a mom of two boys who are about to be blessed with a smom of their own. Honestly, I’m not worried! My children’s father would not bring a woman around unless she is a good person. I have also met her on several family dinner nights!
Yes that’s right I’m a very unusual woman who wants nothing but the best for my kids father and part of that is getting to know his new love.
I wouldn’t say I’m the controlling type but family means the world to me, and making sure my boys have stable loving homes is priority. So I plan to have a “normal” friendship with this new woman. And that includes the three of us sitting down and coming up with rules that will please both households. We must also go over strict guidelines on what punishments will go along with the rules.
I feel my children will see her with more respect if she is not stumbling around. I want this to be a smooth transition for everyone. I would hate to see her punish the boys for something they are usually allowed to do. Even worst is the idea of hearing “but she let’s us do it!” along with these new sets of rules I sat her down the other day to talk about what our ideas on Smom means.
So here is my list of what a Smom should do/be:
1) Be a role model. Show the children how a woman acts and takes care of the household. My kids had to see a relationship fail once, so make sure they see love and respect.
2) I am their mother. Don’t ever try and take my place! Be there for them but know your role and never introduce them as YOUR kids!
3) Keep communication open. As hard as it might be sometimes make sure you talk with the mother about her kids (good and bad)
4) Don’t talk bad. Yes there are bad mothers out there! But its not your business. Don’t make a child feel they have to choose between the two families! Children are innocent and have the right to love someone even with faults
5) Be apart of their lives. Weather its full, primary, or partial custody its your job to be there! It will show the child and mother you want to be a great influence. Pluses you got something to talk to the child about!
6) Love them for them. Don’t try and change them. Don’t try and turn them into what YOU believe they should be.
7) Don’t compare them to your child. Every kid is different! They learn, play, and socialize in a way that’s comfortable for them.
Be a mediator. They will fight with their family and friends. Its your job to listen not to put fuel on the fire. Tell the father or mother what the child is telling you what’s going on.
9) Learn from them. Children have a remarkable way of showing us our flaws. Don’t take it as an insult or reason to run away.
10) Be willing to negotiate rules. Yes each house will have different rules but really look at how important it really was before you punish the other house with keeping up with a grounding or taking away of a favorite toy! I bet the mother will see your flexibility and will become more supportive and flexible with you as well.
11) Selfless! You must be able to share your husband with his kids. Yes there are days you will come home and want to talk to your husband but wait till the kids go to bed! (That’s if he doesn’t get them all the time) If he has a annual camping trip with the kids before school starts up, don’t invite yourself or complain a week is to long.
12) You are his wife, but I am the mother of his children. I’m not saying I’m better then you! I’m saying he has a responsibility to take care of his kids, and part of that is making sure his kids mother is okay! So when he says I got to drop my car off at___ because hers broke down and needs to get to work… Don’t complain! Realize its for the good of the kids.
I do know every family is different, and your situation may not allow some of my list. But give it a try! You never know how things may change for the better.
Sassy Single Mama is a 23 year old mother of 2. She just began her blogging adventures about dating as a mother and raising her boys one day at a time! You can read more about her at her blog:
So what do you think? Please share your comments here!