I remember going home one day and completely breaking down in my partner’s arms. When he sought to find out what was the matter with me all I could say was “this is so difficult”. I guess he understood exactly what I was talking about because he didn’t say a word after that, just held me until I was calm which I really appreciated because at that particular moment that is all I wanted to do was cry.
You see we were still dating and I had met his two wonderful children. I had been eager to meet them and in my head had all these plans and fantasies of us being one big happy family after all, I loved their dad and by extension I would love them. Thing is, it didn’t quite go as I had expected. They did not warm up to me instantly as I had thought and this made our interactions very awkward at the beginning.
I struggled with the fact that his ex would be a constant part of our lives, sometimes I felt like an outsider in my own home and other times I felt like I had this dirty little secret that I could not share with anyone about being a step-mum, I didn’t want to be judged or labelled as ‘evil’. I also felt guilty opening up to my partner about my feelings because I thought he would get the perception like I didn’t love him or his children. Took me a long time to understand all the new family dynamics, why I felt like I did and re-adjust my expectations.
So today I will share with you 5 things I wish someone had shared with me before I embarked on my step-parenting journey.
1. KNOW WHAT YOU ARE GETTING YOURSELF INTO.
The most common confession of every stepparent I have worked with is “I wish I knew it was going to be this difficult”. A lot of people get into step-families with the notion that they will function just like the traditional family they were raised in. This ends up in disappointment because blended families are nothing like traditional families therefore the same principles just don’t work.
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