Raye - posted on 03/12/2015 ( 10 moms have responded )
Someone else's post got me thinking, so lets hear opinions about step-mom saying "my kids" versus "my step-kids"...
There are times, when I'm talking to co-workers, friends, family, even my step-kids that I feel awkward saying "step-son", "step-daughter", "step-kids". They know I'm not their bio-mom, so it's not like I want to deceive anyone. But, it feels like they might think I don't want to be associated with them (that adding "step" beforehand is creating distance between them and myself), and that is not my intent. I am proud of them and I love them. My husband has custody, so we have the kids most of the time, and I do look after them, kiss their boo-boos, tuck them in at night, take them to scouts, sports, events, etc. and I do try to treat them as if they were my kids (I don't have any bio-kids). I'm not trying to step on the mom's toes or be disrespectful. So...
How long would a woman need to be a step-mom (or long-time GF) before it's ok in general conversation to refer to her step-kids as "my family", "my daughter", "my son"? I know not every step parent has the same amount of time that they spend with the children, so this is presuming she has acted in something of a parental capacity as the father's partner.
Also, what's your opinion of this situation: If we are out at a restaurant and the waitress tells the kids to ask their "mom and dad" if they can have dessert, am I supposed to blurt out "I'm not their mom"? Or "hold on a minute while I call their mom"? Again, I wouldn't want the kids to feel like I don't want to be considered their family, and I would get crazy looks from the wait staff. Occasionally one of the kids has said something like "she's not our REAL mom" not meaning disrespect to me, but just explaining, and the waitress looks like a deer caught in the headlights. She doesn't know how to respond and it makes everyone uncomfortable. I will then say "I'm their step-mom" and that usually gets a nod of understanding, but then the waitress usually won't say two more words to us the rest of the time we're there. So, I feel there are some situations where it's just less complicated not to specify.
So what are the accepted conventions (if any) when it comes to this type of thing?