Step-parents offer advice

It's tough being a step-parent but can be rewarding as well. Our users from the Step Parenting Support forum give advice to one another.

Q: Having a hard time keeping my mouth shut

I have been dealing with ungrateful stepdaughters for years. I have always supported them, stood behind them fed them, bathed them, clothed them and so on. It’s like they have forgotten everything I have done for them. I fought for them in court when they were younger and getting abused by their mom. I went from being their saver to being the wicked stepmother. I have gotten to the point where I can’t even stand to be around them. I find myself getting in a bad mood anytime they are here. How can I get past this, I’ve got a few more years left before they are 18. I’m so stressed; I hate the fact that I have closed myself off to them. What do I do?

Step Parenting Support user Answer

I only became grateful for the things my parents did for me when I was in my mid-twenties, and I think that’s fairly common. These girls sound like normal teenagers with the added burden (for you) of a useless bio mom. Would you guys go for family therapy? Maybe you should also go for some counselling on your own to help you sort through your feelings. What does your husband say about all this?

The only other thing I can say is, this too will pass, but it might take a while. My daughter also has a bio family member who she idolises, but who really has a bad influence on her. People keep reassuring me that she will eventually realise the truth, about her parents and her evil grandmother. For my sake, and yours, I hope that’s true. Read full post. 

Q: Any advice from experienced step-moms?

I am about to move in with my boyfriend who has 2 kids age 7 and 9. They live with him. Is there any advice out there from any of you - potential pitfalls to avoid, potential issues that may arise, and how to deal with them? I get along well with the kids, so far there have never been any issues, or at least nothing serious anyway. They are really nice well behaved kids. I am so scared everything will change once I am a permanent fixture in the house.

Step Parenting Support user Answer

Never discipline them, it is their fathers responsibility, unless you are alone with them, then he must say to them that you are going to if necessary. Then do it in a positive manner. Never bad mouth their mom. Accept you are not their mom and never will be, your role will be that similar than a close aunt. 
Never let them play you and your boyfriend off against one another. Be honest with your boyfriend about them; do not keep things from him. It is not your place to have secrets with them. Give them love and a lot of understanding. Try and see things from their perspective. Ensure you get time with their dad and that they also have alone time with him. Good Luck, all the best and I hope it stays a positive experience. Read full post.

Q: Step son giving attitude

How do you deal with a step child who gives you attitude always?

I love my step son he is 10 years old, I take him as my son, do everything for him, like cook, washing, help with school home works sometimes. The problem is whenever he has a fight with his dad then I‘m in trouble, he says I must always listen to him not his dad, when I listen to his dad then I am in trouble when his dad leave us alone he would start pointing me with finger, threaten to beat me, says some nasty words and when his dad comes back he would pretend as if everything is ok even try to smile at me. How do you deal with your step child mommies?

Step Parenting Support user Answer

Ok 1st of all he’s 10 - don’t allow him to intimidate you because this is what he is doing right now. Secondly you and your hubby need to sit down together and speak to him together. Tell him that what he is doing is bullying you and that’s not on, no one likes a bully. Try and make a point of sitting together at least every week - maybe something is happening outside of the home and he thinks his home life is the only place he can take control. Don’t ever forget you are the adult NOT him, don’t lose control; he will never respect you if you do. Good luck. Read full post.

Come and visit our new forums. There is already a forum for step-parenting support.

(Compiled by Tashreeq Vardien, September 2012)

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