I never thought I would find myself in a step parent role. I thought Dave and I would last forever and that if something did happen we'd be old and our kids would all be grown. I had often wondered after I decided to date how I felt about being a step parent. I wasn't sure I wanted to have small children. I definitely wanted them school age - past the point of having to need daycare or something.
When I met James I was like - cool - his girls are old enough and I know how to deal with girls. I have enough of them in my family that I know them much better than boys. Keagan wasn't happy that he was the only boy yet again - in a house of girls. He manages pretty well - but hates when everyone says he's cute. Poor kid ;)
Being a step-parent is much harder than I thought. I'm not married quite yet - but I've spent a lot of time with his girls. My kids respect me, I don't ever wonder if they love me. They don't always listen to me and I'm not the best with discipline when they don't. It is kind of weird because I was always the disciplinarian when Dave was here. He was the fun Dad for the most part. He did back me up if I couldn't get far enough. They always listened to him more than me. I tend to allow everyone to walk all over me. I'm an outsider now though. I try super hard to get them to like me, which means that I don't really have that many rules with them. The main rule I want them to follow hasn't really gone well (wanting them to sleep in a bed and not on the floor or couch). I also don't allow music with cussing to be played - and that is not negotiable. My kids know that and it is just not something I want to listen to. I'm fairly lenient in general, but still feel like I can't get just the basic things followed and don't want to push. After all - I'm not their Mom. It is really tough because we only get them every other weekend and we want them to want to come. We don't want them to just come and have free reign though either.
Much more difficult that step-parenting is co-parenting!!!! I'm one of the easiest people to get along with. I'm super nice too. I honestly can't stand the person I have to deal with. I tried - so hard I have tried. I have finally stepped way back and said - I don't deserve to be treated like that. I unfriended her on FB and do not text her at all. We tried mediation and that was horrible for me. I was super angry for over a month with some of the stuff she said to me. Just yesterday she posted something about how people need to co-parent and work together. We have tried - she's not being civil - it is her way or nothing. It's so hard. I've never felt this way before. She constantly talks bad about me to the girls and others. I love the girls - I only want the best for them. I've given them a lot and have taken them so many places that they've never been.
I won't get in to everything that has gone wrong because I'm not trying to bash her. I respect her as the mother of the girls. I refuse to be belittled though. I haven't done anything wrong. I've only pushed for a Dad to have as much time with his girls as possible according to the rules that were set up in their agreement. I want what is best the girls and I know that she doesn't agree with me. I know that it is always best to have the involvement of 2 parents. My kids don't get to have that - and that is so sad for us. I can only try to get these girls to have more of their amazing Dad in their lives.
I know that this isn't going to get any easier. I just hope that I can make it through the next few years without losing it. I never usually have to hold myself back, but I certainly do now. I will not say anything negative to the girls, but saying something positive gets more difficult every day.
I am a wife and mother of 2. I have many different interests - baking, home renovations, music, education ;)