Stepdads

Dawn - posted on 08/11/2009 ( 15 moms have responded )

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How do you help a 5 year old understand all the details of life after mommy gets married?? He doesn't want to call my future husband his daddy even though they love each other very much.

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Jennifer - posted on 04/10/2011

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do not force him to call your new husband daddy. it should be his choice. he will do so when he is ready. I would gather that he is used to calling him by his name till this point - so if nothing else, it will take time. do remember that no matter how close he is with your new husband - that man is not his father and he is old enough to understand that. just take things one step at a time - tell him that he is more then welcome to call his stepfather dad or daddy or by his name...whatever he is comfortable with. just don't make a big deal of it...things will happen in their own time.

Naomi - posted on 08/11/2009

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My children have never called my husband daddy, nor has my husband's children ever called me mom, and we are all still very close. It's really not necessary.

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My husband is my older kids stepdad and they were 5 and 1 when we started dating and maried a year later and they call him by his first name. My smaller kids never confused the names. They call him dad.

It was just natural not to force them to call him dad as it might have been wierd in the long run do what you feel comfortable with. In todays world stepfamilies ard becoming the norm. So it doesn't matter what other think.

Tanya - posted on 08/11/2009

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I met my husband when my daughter was 5, he was amazing with her, went to every pageant, school event and soccer game and always helped out with home work. we moved in together when she was 6 and had one of her brothers when she was seven.

She started calling him dad when she was seven, not because I or he asked her to because she loved him and feels as if he is her dad, if i had of forced her to i would have reuined what a wounderful relation she has with him. Also he took the time to earn her respect and affection but showing her respect and affection, taking time out to do what real dads do. hope all works out for you.

Isobel - posted on 08/11/2009

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I'd say, for now, just love the fact that they love each other...that's all he needs to understand.

I don't think that it's necessary for a kid to call a step parent mom or dad...I still call my mom's husband by his first name...names don't mean much.

Hanna - posted on 08/11/2009

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I was a divorce kid and even though it was hard for me, i loved my new dad and to this day i call him daddy and consider him my dad because he has been 'the father figure' to me since i was 5.

my parents explained it to me like this: your mommy and daddy love you very much but not everyone can live together because then they end up fighting all the time. so they live separately, but you are still the most important thing in both of their lives (and it would help if you and your ex could sit down together and explain it or at least say the same thing but separately) and any time you need something, both mom and dad will be there for you. and as far as your new husband, well tell your son that he's blessed because he'll have 2 dads and 3 people who will care about him and do stuff with him. then you can ask if he enjoys spending time with your new husband and he can consider him a special person who is not there to replace his dad, but rather an addition to his family and to people who he can count on when he needs something.

i hope this helps. i understood it and i loved my step-dad very much, he was my best friend for a long time so the transition was smooth. and even though my mom did try to keep my biological father in my life, as i grew older, it put a few things in perspective and i understood why she left him and who is my dad (not biologically, but definitely the person who put in all the work in good and bad times in sickness and in health as they say)

Sharon - posted on 08/11/2009

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Hey Dawn - as he gets a bit older and cognizant of the fact that he doesn't "have a daddy" it will probably come up again.



I heard kids in the daycare discussing this. With the end result that the little girl who only had a mommy - would call the new boyfriend daddy. It was a really uncomfortable situation. No one handled it gracefully. I don't think that will happen with you and if you and the BF decide to get married, you guys can revisit the "daddy" title then.



Good luck!

User - posted on 08/11/2009

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Let the child make the choice... it is always best to not have any pressure on the children... I have a six year old girl and a three year old boy that have been living with myself and my new partner. They love each other, but he is not their "Dad" or "Daddy". A stepfather has a big responsibility to not think about his feelings and be able to love a child that may never say "Daddy" to him.



I wish all the best for you, it is hard to think from the child's point of view without putting any pressure on them to make you or your husband feel better. Good luck! You never know... they may choose to do it themselves one day.

Dawn - posted on 08/11/2009

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Thanks everyone for all the advice. I guess I should have clarified that he has never known his real father. He's never even asked about him. I have been wih my fiancee since my son was just over 2 years old. They do lots of "manly" things together like go to auction sales and shop for tools.
I guess it is my preference because we will start trying for a child together in September right after the wedding.
I overheard my son talking with his friend one day about daddies. He said "I don't have a daddy I have a Dean". He doesn't get what daddy really means I think so if he's happy with "his Dean" then so be it. I don't plan on pushing the issue I was just wondering if anyone else had gone through the same thing.

Cindy - posted on 08/11/2009

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I'm going through a similar situation with my step son. I know he won't call me mom but i don't expect him, he has given me a nickname, but he also has a step dad that he calls by name, we're all pretty comfortable with that...but if you have children with him you'll want to tell them why he get's to call him by name but they cant

Emma - posted on 08/11/2009

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i have a stepdad and have done saince i was 2 and have always called him dad but i always knew that i still had my real father and recently found myself in my mums shoes with my daughter and my partner i didn't want to put any preasure on her so i left it and she came to me and asked if it was ok if she called him da it has caused dramas with the other part of her familyt but i just told her its her choice and no one can tell her to or not to in the end you have to let them make up thier own mind to much preasure will just confuse them and make it harder.

Cassandra - posted on 08/11/2009

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let me tell you something...my 5 year old has for the past year only known one person as daddy...BUT she wont call him that, recently she met her real daddy....for the FIRST TIME...and she calls him daddy...i think it is more about what they call them the FIRST time...like if he called him daddy from the beginning meaning that you been with him the whole time since your son was born...or atleast started talking...then he would be better at callin him that....like my 18month old...she calls him daddy...but my 5yo refused to call him anything but rob...

Heather - posted on 08/11/2009

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I also have a step-dad, he wanted me to call him dad and I never have. I am just not comfortable calling anyone but my dad, "dad". Just make sure he knows how much you and him love each other, and how much he loves your son. Let your son know that he doesn't have to call him daddy for the step dad to know how much he loves him. They should pick out something meaningful to the both of them.

Cayla - posted on 08/11/2009

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well when i was 4 years old my dad met a new woman

and i was the same way i just wanted my mom and dad back together.

Just encourage your new husband to do plenty of activities with your child.

Its going to take plenty of time for the adjustment and dont make him

call his step-dad daddy i know it would be great and everything but let

him adgust to his own terms. Im just saying this because this is what

happened to me as a child i did it on my own terms and now have an

amazing relationship with who i now call mom. So just like i said

encourage them to spend lots of bonding time together when hes comfortable

he will call him dad :)

Sharon - posted on 08/11/2009

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5 yr olds aren't going to get it. But you can tell him this man is his step daddy and the title will be.... and find a title you guys can agree on. Papa, Uncle, Daddy Mike.



But keep in mind that whatever title you go with any future children you have together will be use it.

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