Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Are you a childless stepparent?

How many of you are childless stepmothers? Me, too. My husband came with three children. That led to two step-grandchildren. Now there's a step-great-granddaughter, but I'm way too young for that.

We do not have a warm and fuzzy relationship. In fact, now that they're adults, we don't have much of a relationship at all. But at least when we do cross paths, we hug and say nice things, unlike some other steps.

I have been reading postings at the Childless Stepmoms forum. If you're looking for company, you might want to check it out. Be forewarned: What I see there most is a lot of anger. The childless stepmoms often seem to be at war with the biological mothers and with the teenage kids. The younger children are usually all right, but there are constant battles over child support, visitation, discipline and other issues that come from sharing children. It's a good place to vent with friends who know what you're talking about.

In contrast, blogger and artist Tiffany Lee Brown writes about the joy she has found in step-parenting. Once a childless stepmom, too, she recently became a mother herself. She says her great relationship with her stepdaughter made her want to have kids of her own. Read her blog at magdalen.blogs.com/nymphe.

What is your experience with step-parenting? Do you think it's harder because you don't have children of your own? (I do.) I'd love to hear what you have to say.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Dear Sue

Not sure how I came by your blog, but over the past week or so I've been working my way through the postings and comments. I've done a lot of crying while doing so!.

I am 42 and my partner is the same age and we met at University and were best friends before we got together 10 years ago. In the meantime, he had a son (now aged 13) and therefore I have known my stepson since before he was born. We have a rather special relationship and I think its healthy. However, he's coming up to 14 now and I want to make sure I continue to have a good relationship with him through the teenage years. I love him and he's very important to me as I didn't have kids of my own (just didn't happen, even though I wanted it to - maybe I'll tell you more about that in another post).

I work MUCH harder at the relationship with him, than his father does and it is an absolute fact that the father would not have seen as much of the boy - or have anything like the good relationship he does now - if it had not been for me pushing him to arrange access, visits, etc. I arrange all the diary events and weekend treats. I do all the shopping and childcare. I know what he is allergic to and what his tastes are. I even know what his secret 'on-line gaming' alter ego is. his father knows none of this! Yes his father is - obviously - the one who gets the love and I have to admit it hurts me.

I am fed up of 'real' mothers telling me its different when it's your own. Yes, I know it's different!! I hate being excluded from the 'advice circles' because I am not his biological mother. I badly wanted to be a mother but had to settle for something else. It has brought me to tears just writing this down and it's something I haven't been able to discuss with anyone else, so I am glad to have found your blog.

Lily x

Suelick said...

Lily,
Thank you for sharing this. I know wasn't easy. Hang in there and love your stepson and your husband.
Sue