Blended Family, Blog, From Her, Parenting

The Stepmom Stigma

A Chance To Give ‘Stepmom’ A Whole New Meaning

Wow. Where do I start? Let’s think about the things that pop into your head when you hear the word Stepmom… does it make you cringe? [Perhaps] it puts a smile on your face. Either way, we all have different ways we react to having or being a stepmom. Let’s take a look at what it takes to have this important role in your family’s life.

Well, being a stepmom involves 9 attitude traits:

  • Love
  • Joy
  • Peace
  • Patience
  • Kindness
  • Goodness
  • Faithfulness
  • Gentleness
  • Self-Control

Sound familiar? Well, in case you need a refresher – this is the Fruit of the Spirit [which by the way, I am needing this poster as a reminder].

That’s right! But let’s be real, having these traits with your own flesh and blood children is hard enough, so how do we apply it to being a stepmom?

Simple. Your stepchildren are just as much yours as your own flesh and blood are.

Yeah, I said it – I know. Pretty risky of me, isn’t it? [No, not really.]

First of all, let’s get something clear.

Not ALL stepmoms come straight out of Cinderella. In fact, my goal as a stepmom is to be the exact opposite. Cinderella has always been one of my FAVORITE movies. I used to be a housekeeper, and I was single, and I would ridiculously imagine myself mopping the floors by hand (well, I wasn’t imagining that I really WAS doing that), and suddenly my prince would walk in and rescue me.

Lucky me, I got my prince. Turns out that when Will was in grade school, he played the role of the prince in his school play, Cinderella. How convenient.

 

When Greta, my youngest stepdaughter, discovered that I absolutely love Cinderella, she wanted to share in the joy of watching it with me. It wasn’t until partially through the movie that I began wondering if this was how she viewed me. I became nervous. Self-conscious. I immediately wanted to turn off the movie.

  • Mean
  • Crude
  • Jealous
  • Ugly
  • Manipulative

These were all traits of Cinderella’s evil stepmother.. and boy did I find it hard to not view myself with these traits. To this day, I still struggle with viewing myself like this.

420372_3348707672965_1286729743_nMy relationship with Taelor is extremely opposite of mine with Greta. My relationship is good with both girls, but Taelor being older made it extremely easy for me to join in the family. She confided in me, as a stepmother. Taelor never made me feel like I was competing for attention, and always looked for ways to just be with me and have fun with me. She welcomed me as a stepmom with open arms, as did Greta – but with Greta as the younger of the two, ‘step-momming’ has come with some challenges. That’s for another blog.

 

So let’s break it down and put a whole new name to this ‘Stepmom Stigma’.

I Stepmom Like This

  1. I Remind Myself That I’m Leaving a Legacy. It isn’t often that one get’s to have complete influence on another’s life. I’m fortunate enough to make an impression on my kids that will last them a lifetime. Having the opportunity of not being Greta and Taelor’s real mom, I can hold the power to give ‘stepmom’ a new definition.
  2. I Throw Away Anything Negative. Whether it’s negativity towards any of my kids, step or not, I throw it out the window. Sure, we have children with issues that need to be dealt with, but if I deal with it in the light of a positive attitude and the hope that lies in knowing God brings healing, wisdom, and restoration – I have no reason to be negative. Negativity creates poor results, and I don’t want to create negative adults out of my ‘poor-result children’.
  3. I Turn Around And Keep Moving. So honestly, I don’t always walk out #2 like i’m so graciously displaying in this post. I’m human! But guess what, we have an opportunity to keep moving. If we are displaying negative attitudes towards our children, apologize. Ask forgiveness, receive it and move forward. Just because you had a bad day doesn’t mean it’s the end of the world.

So how do you stepmom? Let’s not leave out those stepdads! Let us know some of the challenges you face. Comment below or contact us. We would love to hear from you!

5 thoughts on “The Stepmom Stigma”

  1. I find the most challenging part for our family is my stepsons mother accepting me in his life. Often we fear being replaced, or 2nd place, and in that struggle deny our children the extra love and caring a step parent can offer. I have a child with a stepmom too, and although I strongly dislike her, if she shows my son love I accept her role in his life. Because hey, the more people that love our children, the better their lives will be for it.

    1. Yes! That is one of the HARDEST parts of being a step-parent in my opinion. You have this idea of what it is to be a good parent, and someone else may have a different idea of what it is to be a good parent. Most times, those ideas clash COMPLETELY.

      That is another blog for another day, but I’m hoping that even though there will always be challenges in co-parenting… that it remains about our kids and not about ourselves. It’s a fine line to make sure not to cross. At least for me, it is.

      Thanks so much for sharing, Christy!

  2. Thank you, Laura. Thank you for posting your personal stories through this journey on earth. Love how you and Will find ways to stay positive. You are an inspiration to step parents and biological parents.
    I always told my kids that they were extra special to Terry because he “chose” to adopt them into our blended family.
    Most of all, thank you for coming into my life.

    1. Thank you for those kind words, Tanya! I am so happy you’re in my life too! Blended families are no easy task, but God’s definitely blessed all of us.

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