Why did I choose to be a step-mom?

  • Hi Everyone,

    I was just wondering if anyone else out there has been facing the challenge of being a step-parent? What is it that makes a person accept that challenge, what is the purpose of it?

    You're expected to sacrifice like you are their "real" Mom, yet you don't have the same say in how to raise them, don't get the credit for being there for them or the contributions you make to the kids well being...I seem to remain the outsider.

    Because if you get too close, you're intruding, and if you don't get close enough, you're a heartless, evil person who doesn't care about the kids.

    I feel like I can't win, so what is the purpose of all this?

    i've been a step-mom for 10 years now, and I still feel inadequate.

    What to do/


  • I grew up with a step parent and obviously since you are worried about it you are probably doing a good job. I know it is hard but it sounds like you and your partner are trying to go at it the best way. Also depending on the ages of the children they will probably retreat anyway.

    I think really it is better to actually be a bit distant and let them come to you. My mother forced me to call my stepfather dad and other stuff that made me uncomfortable. In fact it led me to retreat from her as well as him.

  • Brigidaire,

    bieng a parent, a flesh and blood parent is not easy, bieng a stepparent is even more difficult,

    I am a grandmother raising a second generation, what i can advice you is to try to be thier friend,

    be there when they need a helping hand, study thier faces to know when they have a problem, let them know with words, that you are willing to help them to the best of your ability, the decision they make will be theirs,you did not mention their ages, children have different stages, and go through alot of changes, share activitys with them, there are so many ways to teach a child, when we see a movie, we can always comment on what is right and what is wrong and the consquences of that wrong action, but you never did reprimand did you? things you see on the news, look at the world around you for clues, observe thier faces, it will tell you so many things, when they are sick, when they are happy and so on. just be there, now the question u ask, why did i choose to be a stepmother, because you love the man! and the kids came along! cheer with them when the do something good! great words to use on a child, i am so proud of you! you look so pretty or so handsome. today is here the day you bieng wating for so long! like i said in the beginning it is not easy, and i l know you want to share in the lives,otherwise you would have not written to this post, bottom line, my grandchildren sometimes say to me you think you are my mother, i have only one answer for them I am well aware that i am not your mother, but i feel like i am! what i dont say is who is here playing that role, maybe someday they will understand! all the sacrifices that are done for thier well bieng! even when they are your own! sit and watch stepmom with kim bassenger, and you will get plenty of good ideas with that movie, i am not really sure if that was the titl of the movie or my step mom is a alien, bottom line, it draw a clear and better picture, and dont worry about tommorow, take it one day at a time,

    i hope i have been of some help, now i would like to hear from Dalia, she always has some wonderful advice! Continue with the love you have in your heart for it diffently shows! God bles u

  • the kids must be big now since u been a stepparent for ten years now! just keep loving and when they became adults, they will then see wow! that they were blessed by having someone like you besides them that really cares about them! i face some of the same issues with my grandkids as i did with my son! some parents, go thru the same issues, with thier own kids, kids are like billionaires, the more they have the more they want! And if they they repay with kindness remember at all times, that god is the one that gives the true rewards,

  • Being a stepparent is extremely hard. I took the challenge when my husband's daughter was 5. He loves to remind me that I'm the only mom she's ever had. She wound up in CPS care just before our wedding because the guardians her father chose for her (after his ex girlfriend--the mother--abused her) while he was on military duty abused her and the CPS worker neglected to inform him . We couldn't find her for a long time. We've been through hell with her, legally, medically, ethically, morally, etc. I wouldn't give it up for the world. It is hard to know what to do when I am watching my 18 year old stepdaughter destroy herself (she asserts her independence with drugs and prostitution while being a mental age of 10 (the state never addressed her mental issues and mandated that she be kicked out of the system -- I'm medically disabled and can't care for her on my own while he's a long haul truck driver --our only dependable source of income -- and can't take her on the road with him to care for her because she'll run off in some other state). Yet , as hard as it is for me to stepparent her, it is even harder to be a partner in her father's life because he has his strong feelings and passions, and I would never cross them, but I have to balance him to bring him back to reality to think of what's best for her instead of what FEELS right for him.

  • my story is similiar to ladelady with the exception that iI am the grandmother, my son girlfriend bore him two beautiful boys, the eldest right now is fifthteen, this child was so abused that his head is full of sarces, his mother use to hit him with the belt buckle on his head, one time this child bieng only two years old my son came from work when his exgirlfriend call him to take the child to the hosiptal, the bone in his leg was out of place, the child had a cast on his leg for a long time. my son wanted the relationship to work, even though they were not living under the same roof, he would still see her, as related by the child, she used to keep him in the crib all day long! tied his hands behind his back all day long so he would not suck his tumb, still and all three years later, she became pregant with another child, meanwhile he tried was trying to get custody through the courts, sometimes justice can be blind and deaf! when the youngest was ten months old, she call my son, at that time my son had moved on had a new girlfriend, threating that she was going to throw the baby from the balcony, a third floor balcony, this time the cops intervene, and she was arrested, and my son through the courts of puerto rico got custody of his two boys, one now is fifthteen and the youngest ten, i fear for my oldest grandson to turn to drugs, or be abusive himself, sometimes it becomes a vicicous cycle, its too soon to tell but fortunely, he has not turn to drugs, which i pray he never does. but he is a difficult child

    for me it is extremely fearful, just thinking when i see certain attitudes he takes. i worried my self sick, even though i know, that if things are meant to happen there not much i can do but each night i pray to god for god to lead him through the right path.His second girlfriend stood by my son side a few years, eventually she abandon the ship because she did not want the responsibity, she was working full time and going to college to become a nurse, at that time my son was also working and going to college to become a nurse, i was living in the states when i got a call from him to give him a hand, so he could continue and give his kids a better future, it was a battle for me because, i had already raised three children, but i agreed, today my son is a

    chemo nurse, the youngest child has is much more easygoing the the oldest, thank god he did not have to go through what his older brother went through. I love them intensely, i admire both of you for taking the challenge of bieng a stepmom, and above al wanting the best for these kids, Depending on the ages of Brigidaire, children i think she should find a way to have a good heart felt conversation with her kids, letting them know that she truly love them and that she well aware that she is not the birth mother, but in her heart she feels like she is that she will always be there for them, we are a family, the most beautiful word in the world! and as a mother i can tell you that they were times when raising my own children was quite challenging, kids now feel that thier lives are thiers, teenage years are the most difficult. not only here in the states no matter where you go; try getting past the door using that very powerful key, the key of love. when i first read your forum, i skimmed read which is a habit i have because i am always stress for time, my house is 2000 square foot, i do shopping and three meals a day, sometimes i do not even have time to think, and take care of three men!

  • If you have been there for 10 years you are in no way inadequate. You chose to be a stepmother because you fell for the father of this child/children. If you were not enough he would have left you long ago. It is a hard place to be, as a child has only 1 mom, but can adapt to many father figures. Do not underestimate yourself, if you love the man, then you must love his kids otherwise this relationship would have failed long ago. I am not in a position to understand your dilemma as I am a single mom and I refuse to allow anyone near my child or me, I am far too overprotective of my only child and since the father is deceased. I will not allow anyone else to get near us. You have accomplished something I never will, so I think you should look to the positive side of yourself and know that this appears to be a problem to you, but not him, or they would have been gone long ago. Good luck to you, have more faith in yourself. You must be doing ok otherwise he would have been gone years ago. God bless you my dear and stop doubting youself, you obviously have offered this family a great part of you.

  • Brigidaire

    I was just reading the aries forum, i totally agree with frizstgold comments to you, like your self i am also a aries, our families, our job, our homes, come in first, then we stress our self out believing that good was not good enough, i also totally agree with the above comments, obsivoly you done a great job! those kids are still there with you, and they are not so small, your husband is with you, for your own personal happiness stop stressing, just enjoy your family, and take sometime out for yourself, because without Brigidaire, life would never be the same for your family, you have been a excellent step mom and if you are a mother, i am sure, you have been excellent, one day when they all have familys of thier own, maybe not in words, but with actions, they are still going to be by your side. giving plenty to love and support!

  • Hi Everyone,

    I just want to thank everyone who responded to my question, I honestly didn't think anyone would reply!

    But this is a great community, I will never doubt again!

    It saddens me though that there are so many of you have lived lives filled with so much pain -mental and physical- in ways I can't even imagine having to live through. I am so glad there is a safe place where you are able to talk about it to people who care about you, and not feel judged, that you are tainted, not good enough...here in this forum you can drop your insecurities and fears.

    I like that!

    I feel that I need to tell you more of the story, explain myself more.

    I asked "why did I choose this path" because I feel we all have a mission in life set out for us before we decide to be born, and I was wondering if anyone had a theory about why one would choose to be a "good" step-mom, is it to push the barriers of what constitutes family? Because that is the sense I get. I guess I needed some encouragement that I am doing the right thing, and that i can try harder...it is all for a higher purpose.

    Why do I feel that?Because it makes what I went through with my step-moms seem worth it.No, I was never physically or verbally abused by my 2 step-moms, but they never made me feel welcome or important. In fact they made me feel like a burden, an imposition on the life they wanted to create with my Dad.They never accepted me, or encouraged my Dad to make me feel like I was still part of the family. So I always felt like an outsider as a kid, which I knew was wrong. Why have kids if you don't want the responsibility that comes with that priviledge? And why fall in love with a man with kids unless you are prepared for the consequences that come with that?

    So, I fell inlove with a man with children, which I was always kinda expecting. I could right the wrongs and make sure no kid had to go through what I did.But I doubt the mission, when it seems so fruitless, so unrewarding at times, and I wonder if it is worth it.

    Because I want to be happy too, live my dreams.



  • Hi everyone,

    I see no one has responded to my last post, but that is ok. I think a big part of this whole phenomena of forums,blogs,twitter is that anyone can express their thoughts to the world...someone is listening. It gives you that sense of release, validates who you are, that you are not alone...or maybe you are.It allows you to get a different perspective of your life, and give an opinion on what is happening to other people, share your experiences with others.

    I feel its like writing in your diary, yet allowing stangers to read it and help you understand yourself withmore clarity quicker

    So anyways, just a quick note.

    The day after I wrote my last post, I had a conversation with a co-worker that helped me see I am not alone, my life does have a purpose!

    He as well had his parents divorce when he was young, and his parents did the same thing mine did...told their children that their Dad was a bad man, that their Mom was a rotten woman. his parents told him things about each other that he should not have been told,his parents dissed each other to their children to make themselves feel better, and to share their hatred of each other to their children, never thinking about how that will affect the relationship the child has with the other parent.

    When a child loses respect for their parents, they lose respect for themselves and everyone around them.You lose respect for life, and this is the base from which hatred and selfishness flourishes and grows, spreading to everything.

    My co-worker said that because of this he will never diss his ex-wife in front of his son, never disrespect her in front of his boy. No matter how much he hates his ex-wife, he will never express that to his son, because he must teach his boy to respect his mother, to do otherwise is just wrong.

    I have never heard anyone else express these thoughts to me before, but now that I have I see I am not alone, and i get why i had to go through what i did.It is to learn compassion for others. Just because you messed up your life doesn't give you the right to make your problems everyone elses. Stand up and take responsibility for your mistakes, forgive those that hurt you, and move on. Learn about yourself and try not to put yourself in the same situation again.Accept that you are imperfect, and so is everyone else so why be so quick to judge and lay blame.

    What I'm getting at is that a think a big part of the reason why I chose this path of being a step-mother is to help create a world where people stop focusing on what is best for them, always putting their needs first. We as a human race need to stop blaming everyone else for what is wrong with this world and see how that we all are to blame. Everytime you do something that you know is wrong, but feel justified for doing the wrong thing because someone else did you wrong, you keep the viscious cycle of hatred alive.Everytime you judge someone as ignorant, beneath you, you help the power of darkness stay alive.

    I beleive we can have a world where everyone is given the oppurtunity to share the very best of themselves...a world where we are all able to let the love inside each and everyone of us be the guiding force in our lives.

    Sorry for rambling, but I needed to express this to remind myself what it is I am to strive for, what really matters in life LOVE.

    I wrote to you about my"hardship" of being a step-mom because I was feeling sorry for myself. Now I see that I really haven;t been trying hard enough to do the right thing.


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