Bio-Parents & Step-Parents: Get over yourselves – it’s not about you.

It’s not about being a Bio-mom or a Step-mom – it’s about being a parent either way. My opinions on this are very strong – because I am both, and my children have both. Our children, my biological, my husbands biological, my ex-husbands biological child from a different relationship and his wife’s biological from a previous marriage – do not give a care about who is who – they only care who is there for them – who cares about them – who they are safe with.

The children do not care about child support, or who used to be married to whom – or why one parent dislikes the other. They are children – they care that their parents show-up, that they be involved, that they support them in sports, academics, and in their lives. They care that when there is a Christmas recital, and they peek through the curtains – all of the people they love are there – without fighting, for the best interest of the child.

My children’s step-mom and I have talked maybe twice – she has formed her opinion based on my ex-husband and there is nothing I can do to change that – and honestly I won’t try to. Over the years, I am confident she will witness enough for that to change on her own. As a bio-mom there are only two things I would appreciate her doing for the children 1) Love and care for them as her own 2) Be there – all the time – supporting them. In my opinion that is her role, she is in there lives, and is their fathers main person in his life – together they make their home, a place that is a home to our children.

In our home, I feel it is my job to be the same for my stepson – to always look out for his best interest. He came into our home with a mother already – but not by his side during our time. My place isn’t to replace hers – but it is to fill in the void temporarily. Why should I not? Is it not my place to love him, to teach him little things here and there, to show him love, compassion and understanding? My husband is a wonderful man, but he is also a man. No disrespect to the fathers out there, because I know that some are sensitive & snuggly, but women are able to teach certain things that men can not. When my stepson came into my home for the first time, he was only one – not potty trained, cried all the time, he was a baby – and I was already a mother. It is only natural – to mother the child, it would be unnatural for me to not have.

The problem with society or the bio-mom vs step-mom or even bio-dad vs step-dad is not the role they play and who over steps who, the problem in the involvement – and who is and who isn’t. The “other” parent can only be seen as over-stepping when there is room to do so. If things were covered, the role was fulfilled completely – there would be no room, to step in or take over as many feel the other parent does. There is also the part of partial involvement – the parent who is never there for the child – but is hurt because one parent has made it so. Take for instance my children’s Bio-dad and his wife. For my daughter, they have not been involved. They missed the entire year last year of anything that was important to her, and rightfully so she was upset. Softball is something my daughter loves, and she plays in a competitive league – its nine months out of the year – and her father didn’t support her – at all, even using it against her. Her stepmother was not involved at all either, though I don’t know if it was her choice or not. Today, is try-outs and they are both there as it is their weekend. On one hand, I was impressed they stayed, because they never have. On the other hand, I’m fearful that the involvement will not be permanent. The involvement needs to be permanent.

Children need consistency and permanency of being supported for all involved. There are times when you have to work, or something important comes up, that is understandable. However, a vendetta, or personal adult problem shouldn’t interfere with a parents involvement with a child. Don’t you remember being in a game, or a recital and looking for parents and grandparents, aunts and uncles? Why are step-families – not part of that group? Because we came after, or because we are seen as second.  A step-parent is no different from a friend that comes into your child’s life and loves them, only to be called an aunt or uncle – even though not blood related. They still care for your child, they love your child, playing with them, teaching them – doing what adults are supposed to do with children.

If parents spent more time addressing the real facts – instead of labeling the nasty role of a wicked step-parent on the “other” parents forehead – they might be surprised that they have something to not only offer your child – but maybe yourself. Who cares if another woman or man loves your child, plays with your child, or builds a healthy relationship with your child – either way your child is benefiting. Did you read that? YOUR CHILD IS BENEFITING. That’s whats important – nothing else.

Do you think your child is benefiting or losing because of your situation?

See you next blog, Jess~

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About Totally Jessifiable

This blog contains all the inner workings of me - the good the bad and the ugly. Although a majority of it is Step-Mom related since that is my current state of parenting along with my own children. There will be times of regress, moments of my childhood, good and bad that created the parent I am today - and there will be moments of utter happiness because I have made it through hell and back. This blog is real, it will hopefully make you angry, it will make you cry, it will make you laugh so hard you may pee your pants - its suppose to create a feeling within you - and I hope it does.

Posted on October 21, 2012, in Father, Judgment and Loss, Life, Love, Marriage & Divorce, Parenting, Stepparents and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. I completely agree! I have one stepson and i have two bio sons with my husband. When husband and I were together i made sure to have her permission if i were going to be around her son. I went out to lunch with her and my stepson so that she could see how i was with him and i made sure she knew that i was a good person that she could trust with her child. I’ve always made sure to respect her as his mother and give her that place but i assured her and him that if he needed anything that i would be there. Note, four years later we are constantly communicating and she even status to talk a while with me when she comes to stop him off. We discuss concerns that we may have about him or something new that he learned or is doing. (He’s 6 now) we have joint birthday parties where all of her and our families go. I think we don’t see it as step parenting but more like co parenting. He needs us all to love him, teach him and take care of him.

  2. Hi, great article. I am also a mom and a stepmom so I see both sides. I would just caution that in the early months and years people may not be physically or emotionally capable of doing everything that you describe. In the months after my separation and in the first months of my relationship with DH, my emotions were just so raw and couldn’t bear to be around Ex and (later) TM, despite my best efforts and intentions.

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