Thursday, August 8, 2013

Custodial Step Mom Rambles...

I read a blog yesterday about being a step mom.  She said it was purely her thoughts, but in her situation talking about being a step mom while in the midst of it, is like going through divorce giving advice to someone else.  While I do think there are some things you shouldn’t discuss, I also think that as step moms we struggle.  It’s not a struggle that every mother can relate to, especially when you are the custodial step mom.  There are often times I wish there was someone who understood; that I could talk to and seek advice.  I come from a long line of long married folk. My 3rd time the charm, came with 4 step children.  

I love them as my own, from the moment my husband I started talking about them I knew in my heart there was no way I couldn’t.  Now that I’ve lived with them for 6 months and the honeymoon phase (yes, there is a honeymoon phase with the children) is over, I learned 70% of all blended families fail.  People that rate is higher than normal marriage.  We only have a 30% chance to make it.  Well guess what?  I’m in it for the long haul, and in that I have to talk.  

You will not find me doling out advice; I don’t have any.  What you will find is my open and honest feelings about what I (me personally, no one else) is going through.  By doing this, I hope that just one person will not feel as alone as I do sometimes.   Your husband doesn’t know what you are going through, your mother-n-law doesn’t know what you are going through, and only you do. You may be the only one that understands it the way you see it, but I guarantee you are not alone in this.

As custodial step-parents, we often spend a considerable amount more time with our step-children than both their biological parents.  We often cook, clean and do more laundry than both their biological parents.  Yet, we are the first ones looked down on as only being a step parent.  While a majority of step-parents are non-custodial and get to take on more of a “fun” parent approach, custodial step-moms take on a lot of responsibility, with more times than not any appreciation.  Sure, maybe someday the appreciation will come, but it might not.  The one thing you have to realize though is your step-children deserve a constant in their lives, whether they realize how important it is at the time or not.  

I am more than just a cook, maid, laundry mat, health insurance provider, and money provider.  I am not just a step, I’m an asset.  With all those duties, I get certain perks of the job, I get to expect my house runs in a certain order, I get to expect you to learn how to do chores and help out, I get to set limits on when you can come in and out of the house, not just your biological parent.  I also get to earn your love.

Guess what as a step child you are missing out on realizing by only concentrating on negativity?  As just your step-parent, when you are already 16, I don’t have to take any responsibility for the way you were raised. There is no pressure on me for the way you behave.  They screwed you up, I just get to love you the way you are.  I get to gang up on your biological parent and be a voice to say what you want to say, but don’t have the ability to know how to say correctly. I get the chance to be the fun one, who will listen and stand up for you in a way you can’t.  I’m not trying to take the place of another parent; I’m just trying to love you.  I will be a constant love for you.  I will get on to you out of love, and I will love you fiercely. I will be an asset not just a stepping stone.  

We are going to go through a lot of learning curves, because we are both new to this whole thing.  You may never come to love or like me…but God taught me to love you as he loves me….and I will.  Always.