After hearing from many blended families, I’ve realized not all will have the same answer to what their hardest part of step-parenting is but the main one I’ve heard so far holds truest to those who don’t have it made easy.
Not to take away the other hardships that come from step-parenting I’ll be sharing some of them as well to be an equal opportunist here 🤪. So here goes on some of the main ones I’ve heard:
•Blending a family together – With both parents coming from different cultures and different parenting techniques, it can be very difficult to come together and find that compromise needed to raise your blended family. With my husband and I coming from different backgrounds the main thing that kept us going was our faith.
•Step-children being difficult –
I have heard some horror stories of step-children acting out or giving the step-parent a hard time. Honestly I feel blessed to have been spared from this and pray for those who are going through this trial.
•When the ex still has feelings for your spouse –
This becomes uncomfortable especially when they try to find every opportunity to sit next to your spouse such as during kid events, kid’s sport events, kid’s appointments, and the like. It gets even more uncomfortable when the ex-spouse gets remarried and continues the same actions above and now the ex-spouse’s new spouse takes their anger out on you or your spouse without wishing to acknowledge the obvious.
•When false stories are being spread about you –
While this one is a hard one, to which I can totally relate to but I’ve gotta say it’s still not the hardest for me because wonderfully enough the truth ALWAYS comes out.
•And many more…
Now let’s get to the grit of it. And what I’ve heard the hardest part of step-parenting is: it is when a bio-parent is waiting for you (the step-parent) to fail, to make a mistake. And worse yet to make a big stink about it, document it, and try to create a negative picture of who you are when you are already beating yourself up for the mistake you made to begin with. (Now dealing with these kinds of bio-parents puts a whole new different spin on “walking on eggshells” and “dealing with ptsd”)
That’s right; some bio-parents don’t realize or cannot conceptualize that step-parents are humans (just like they are) and do make mistakes (just like they do).
So why do some bio-parents expect step-parents to be perfect when they themselves are not and only jump at the opportunity to bash on the step-parents when they mess up? Good question but I’m sure only true psychologists can answer that one.
Please be advised of shocking statement said here next that led me to writing this blog;
I made a mistake.
What?! Me, making a mistake?! How dare I be human! How dare I be less than perfect!
For those newer readers my mistake can be found in my previous blog titled “Miracles in the New 2020 Year”. Read it and come right back here.
Now currently some of you may find this as a joke. A joke that I’m bringing this up. That it doesn’t seem that big of a deal. That this mistake can’t possibly be what has made such a dilemma. Well… kids talk and so do others. And it has.
Sadly some bio-parents use counseling sessions to try and get the counselor to document false or negative things going on in the other parent’s home but never truly letting the kids be free and comfortable to talk about the fears and stresses they actually face in their own home. And then we are shocked to hear how hurt these kids are when they finally open up when they become adults.
Sometimes the things we face in our lives may seem unfair but I see it as a great opportunity to share with others. To let you know you’re not alone in this. And that we are all humans who wish to grow, learn from mistakes, and be better not only for oneself but for all family members involved.
So to all step-parents; know you are awesome! You are loving on kids who are not your own. You are sacrificing your own needs to satisfy your step-kids needs. You are to be commended! And yes if mistakes are made, learn from them, but MOVE ON! Don’t let others bring you down.
To all bio-parents; give grace to the step-parents who are helping raise your children to be the best they can be. With understanding that while mistakes do happen (and your guilty of them too, unless your not human 😉) give the same courtesy to the step-parents as you would wish someone would give you when you make a mistake.
And to all counselors; realize there are two sides to every story, to every family. If you believe one side because they scream the loudest then I encourage you to consider re-taking a course in psychology. Don’t be there to encourage a parent to continue finding reasons to take children out of school to satisfy their need to document negative things. Be there to encourage families to get closer, to help bridge that gap, to stop the alienation, because truly your job can be one of which will be reflected on how well or not well the children grow up.
With that I’ll leave you with this: The greatest of people make mistakes, but they learn from them, move on, and triumph at life. So go forth and triumph!