So I am a step parent, my husband is a step parent, my daughter has a step mother and the whole thing can sometimes be a minefield. The relationship my daughter has with my husband is amazing, he loves her like his own and she loves him. They laugh, joke, hug, piggyback, make plans, play, and just enjoy each others company. They think of each other when apart and look forward to sharing good news with each other. In short i’m truly lucky things have worked out so well.
My relationship with my husbands son is also good, considering he is a 16 year old boy its not as easy as a 6 year old girl but we do alright. We can hold a conversation, when he feels like talking, he can be great company on days out and family holidays and I do try and make sure he is included in events where I can. But like I said its not as easy with a teenager, he works part time, has a girlfriend and if Facebook is anything to go by a lot of friends so we don’t see him as much as we would like. There is quite often, lets be honest, a better offer going on somewhere else. Who can blame him, when we were 16 did we want to stay in on a Saturday night with our family or were we out at a “friends house”?? Its not just the lack of time we spend together but also the quality time, sometimes sleeping takes precedent over playing board games, watching a movie or even playing Playstation!
Unfortunately having such a big age gap between the two does mean we are sometimes stuck finding activities everyone will enjoy, on holidays abroad he has to suffer the kids discos before the adult entertainment starts and at home it often means we are confined to the house of a Saturday night as she is asleep upstairs. But on our camping trip this year we all enjoyed a trip to a castle and a game of mini golf on the beach so it can be done, and dont get me wrong Scott sometimes takes him out or goes over to his so he isnt just confined to Saturday nights in with just us,but again this is all less time I get to spend with him. I dont take it personally, right now he is more interested in being a teenager than building a relationship with me, I get that. But over the 3 years I have known him I feel like lately that gap has widened and we are more distant than ever. Even Scott struggles to get a sentence out of him at times and a visit to the Grandparents is like gold dust.
So back to my title line, I guess I never really thought one day I would be step parent and if I did I just imagined I would parent this child in the same way I did my own, love and care for them the same, and offer them the same relationship I do my own. My daughter’s father has a partner he has had for 3 years also and she does not have the relationship with T that Scott has. If i’m honest its the polar opposite. There are no hugs, no affection, no cards or presents on birthdays, she doesn’t ask how T has been if she has been poorly, doesn’t kiss her goodnight or shower her. There is no involvement in T’s school life or homework and she doesn’t show an interest in T’s hobbies. Yes they holiday together and T never has a bad time there but her children are very much separate to T and I just find that strange.
Here I am wanting a relationship with my “step son” and struggling to build one and here she is not trying to. Obviously i’m biased and thinking why would anyone not want a relationship with my
sometimes grumpy little monkey perfect little girl, but hey there isn’t much I can do about that. All I can do for now is keep plugging away the same as my husband and hopefully one day this relationship will build to be two way!
Any thoughts, comments, experiences on step parenting are very welcome, hats off to anyone doing it because it can be a roller coaster ride that you are only a passenger on!