Helene - posted on 09/11/2012 ( 1 mom has responded )
I'm 44 years old and have 3 kids age 18, 14, and 11 and just married my husband three months ago. We dated for 2 years prior to our marriage and tried to establish many family activities/outings, meals, and trips together as "6" during that time I have an eleven year old stepson whose mom past away six years ago. My children and I have moved into my husband and stepson's home and am wondering how best to acclimate the home and family as a whole. My children have grown up with "house rules" their whole life and although my stepson has had some structure to his everyday life via his dad and a nanny (who is no longer with us), I am wondering how to balance acclimating my stepson's changing responsibilities and expectations while maintaining the expectations and rules I have established w/my biological children. My children require second reminders, verbal sternness, or consequences, just like any kids, but I have no problem enforcing expectations/rules. Some of the books I have read recommend having the biological parent maintain all of the structure and discipline, but this is sometimes impossible since my husband is away on business 80% of the time. I do not want to build any resentment from my stepson, but want to foster a relationship of respect and don't want him to feel as though he can take advantage of the situation. Thus far I have been pretty lax about enforcing the same rules with him as with my own children My own children have also noticed this environment and are beginning to become mad w/ my stepson and me, since they feel I am being too lax. I want to establish consistent boundaries with all the kids but realize that it will take time. I don't want to nag my stepson, but after multiple requests by me over days, weeks, and reminders by his father, my stepson either forgets or chooses not to respect requests I make to clean up after himself, maintain his room, and taking too much /wasting food for snacks and meals. Any suggestions?