Good morning wonders.
I dislike the word stepparent. So many people do not understand the meaning of the word. The dictionary defines it as someone that your mother or father marries after the marriage to or relationship with your other parent has ended. Well step parents I’m here to define it a little more for you and as my grandfather would say, “If you throw a stone at a pack of dogs, the one that hollers is the one you hit!”
Disclaimer: I’m speaking to the stepparents whose spouses have visitation rights and don’t use them.
I think the definition of stepparent should include the perspective of a child. That’s the missing element. So from the child’s point of view I’m redefining the definition to include some points of reference from the child.
If you are a stepparent and your spouses children are not allowed over your house, you are not a stepparent.
If you are a stepparent and your spouse is mentally, physically, financially or socially supporting your children but is not supporting their own, you are not a stepparent. As a woman I have never been able to understand this one myself. I don’t know how you would expect a child to understand.
If you are a stepparent and your spouse has had no communication with their child, can you help them? It won’t be easy in all cases but we have FaceTime, Skype, Twitter, Instagram and a host of other ways of communicating that distant should no longer be a deterrent.
Look I know a lot of you have reasons for why your not involved in your children’s lives but if it’s not a court ordered situation to stay away, you may need to look deeper and find a way to make a place into your child’s life. As far as my definition goes:
Stepparent – you stepped into a child’s life because you saw there was a need. But fulfilling that step makes you a parent.
Step parenting is not for the weak hearted. I want to see you be brave.
Wow! Well said. I am a step mother! My first husband (deceased) had a child with his first wife; whom he was never given “access” to from a parent standpoint. Military so he moved around the country and just came “home” a few times a year and the child was never “accessible” when Daddy was in town. When he was 15, my husband was able to gain custody and he came to live with us! I had a huge learning curve and huge challenges to overcome. In the last 25 years this child of my husband has become my SON ! Now that his Daddy has been dead for 10 years, he has withdrawn from me; but I still think of him as my SON ! I always believed that being a step-parent was equal to being a good host. Let the “real” parent be the parent. That went right out the window about the 2nd month of him living in our home. Such a good message. These kids that get bounced around need all the EXTRA love they can get!
That’s why I don’t like the word. Stepping in when your dealing with a child should also mean staying in. Drop the step and be the parent. I’m sorry your son has become withdrawn. That’s the reason I felt I needed to blog. I am the product of a stepparent relationship and I see the relationships my grandchildren are going to have 20 years from now when they are grown with their parents and I don’t like what I see. We have to look pass our wants and see the child’s needs and there is enough love for everyone. I want my grandchildren to have all of their family in one room celebrating their life not to have to select a few because there is strife. As adults the parents should be able to sit together for the child’s sake. I’m sure your son knows you love him still.