Angela - posted on 01/18/2012
My own children were adults when I married my second husband nearly 3 years ago, so their experience isn't the same as any child where the step-parent has come into their lives when they're still children.
Their father married the wife after me nearly 10 years before I married my second husband. He died about 4 months after I got married. Apart from my oldest boy, none of the others has made any effort to form a relationship with their father's widow. My oldest boy got to know her from the beginning, went to the wedding and everything. I feel so sad for her. Despite my best efforts, my daughter refuses point-blank to invite this lady to her wedding later this year.
From what I've heard from friends who grew up with a step-parent, it can be particularly hard for the adult involved. Often more so than the child.
One or two friends of mine with a step-parent told me that they set out to make the person's life a misery. Sometimes this is encouraged by the bio-parent who is the same gender as the step-parent but very frequently it's the child's own wilful choice. One friend of mine feels very sad that she mistreated her step-mother so shamefully and she's never had one word of reproach from her and as an adult she now respects that step-mother and wishes with all her heart she didn't give her a hard time when she was young. The stepmother is kind and friendly with her but they don't have that closeness they could've had if she'd been more accepting of her as a child.
Sadly, this is a typical story. I've seen more heartache in stepfamilies than I ever thought possible. Children can be very cruel. Even though I was a single parent for a lot of years following the breakdown of my first marriage, and wanted to form a permanent relationship with a new partner I always steered clear of men who had children because I didn't want to be yet another resented step-parent.
My second husband never had children with his first wife. He regards my children as his, in a way. I would break my heart if any of them were ever cruel or cut him out of things in the way so many stepchildren do.
Sorry if this isn't a very uplifting post. I really hope your daughter develops a good relationship with her step-dad.
God bless you and good luck.
Carla - posted on 01/18/2012
It will depend on the persons involved. My children were 3 and 5 when my now-husband came onto the scene. My ex was extremely angry that they called him 'Daddy', but HE was the one that raised the kids! Ex would make arrangements to come get the kids on the rare weekend he felt like it, only to have them sitting on their little suitcases by the picture window hours on end waiting for him to show up. We took the kids and moved across the country. We were never sorry.
Kids want consistency, they NEED consistency. If her bio has an active role in her life, I would talk to him when this day comes that you have someone in your life to marry. You HAVE to be on the same page, like Brandi says. This CAN be a positive thing, or it can be He**.
Start praying, before this situation even comes. Pray for a Godly man, pray for your daughter to accept him, and for your ex, that he will support your marriage.
God bless, hon, hope you find a wonderful, Godly man to help you raise your child, and be a good support to you.
Brandi - posted on 01/17/2012
I have had a step-dad since I was 3 (now 31), and my daughter will soon have a step-dad. I do believe all situations are different and can play out differently depending on the activity of the bio-dad. To this day I call my step-dad, "Dad" as he has been the one to raise me alongside my mom. Yes I do occasionally speak to my bio dad but he pretty much gave up his rights and chose to spend his life drinking it away.
My daughter, now 5 already has a step-mom and will soon have a step-dad as I am recently engaged. Her bio-dad plays a big role in her life on a consistant basis. Her relationship with my fiance is wonderful. We do have boundaries and he knows not to cross them. Fiance is allowed to correct my daughter and discipline should I not be present and it be needed. I am the one who is the main disciplinarian to my daughter, but in the same sentence my daughter knows she will respect my fiance just like she does me and her father.
What are your questions or concerns? I will gladly answer what I can from my view of things and help you out as much as I can. But like I said all situations are different. If you asked my cousins how they liked their step-dad, you would get a completely different response than what I give. I try to think as positively as I possible can about this situation.
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