One Wife’s Advice For Stepmoms

photo credit: lrargerich

I have received many inquiries from wives interested in advice for stepmoms.  I realize that there are many wives who get married and immediately step into their role as a mom and encounter how that transition can be challenging at times.  I am so excited that Marsha, our guest blogger today, was willing to open up about her experience in stepparenting, as well as offering a few encouraging tips for stepmoms.  If you have any additional tips for stepmoms, please leave them in the comments below.

Marsha writes:

Being a Mother is one of the most difficult jobs you will ever have.  Being a stepmother… well, let’s just say at times it can be even more difficult than being a mother.  Now I cannot speak for every stepmother, I can only tell you about my journey as a stepmom.  A rocky road filled with jewels.

I was 26 years old when I married the man of my dreams. My husband Bruce had been married before when he was young and he had 2 boys ages 3 and 5 when we tied the knot. I had known my husband and his boys for a year before we got married, and I loved his boys like I love chocolate. And believe me, I love chocolate!! They were adorable, sweet, kind and outgoing. I thought we would be the perfect little family!

At the time we were married, my stepsons lived with us for every other week.  It was a difficult transition for me to go from a woman who was dating, engaged, and then expected to be a mom figure for half of the year!  My happy family image started to disappear when I realized raising kids was a lot harder than I thought it was, especially when they are not your biological kids!

Throughout the almost 8 years Bruce and I have been married, we have had my stepsons 80% of the year for about 5 of those years.  I, as the stepmom had become “the mother figure.”  Not literally of course, but I took on most of the mom responsibilities since they lived with me.

There are many kinds of stepmoms. One’s who are the primary mom, ones who are the every other weekend stepmom, and one’s who are not involved in their stepchildren’s lives by their choice.

At this current time, my stepson’s mom has decided she wants to be the Mom again. And gracefully I have to step back.

How do I feel about that?

Incredible sadness, anger, betrayal, and a great sense of loss of my identity. The law is clear though. Step-parents have no legal rights, even if they are the ones helping with homework, cooking their favorite meals, and driving them to their friend’s house and going to school meetings.

Here is my humble advice for stepmoms:

  • PRAY!!!!!!!!!!!! This is the most important thing you can do for your family.  Ask God to give you a mother’s love for those children.
  • Let your husband communicate with his ex-wife. Trust me, no good will come from a stepmom telling the biological mom what is going on with her children or upcoming decisions to be made. It causes the “mama bear” to come out from the biological mom and she will feel angry and threatened.
  • Just love those step children as much as you can! Kids never asked that their parents get divorced, and they certainly didn’t ask for another parental figure in their lives. As a step parent, you will get grief from the kids. You will get the attitude from them that they don’t have to listen to you. They will even at times say they hate you. Just love them through it, as God loves all of us. It’s difficult, but if you keep your eyes on God, He will give you the strength!

Good luck to you my fellow stepmoms!  

It’s a beautiful job to be entrusted to care for your husband’s children.  And even when it feels like you are failing day by day, pick yourself up and start fresh.

 

 

Someday hopefully your stepchildren will say “Thanks for helping raise me. I truly love you.”  And always remember, your reward is in Heaven waiting for you…

– Marsha Neu

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