You know what is hard…as a stepmom…? Finding a “parenting balance” between you and your spouse’s individual and unique parenting styles. Not only are everyone’s parenting styles individual and unique, but when one parent is the biological parent of the child, and the other is not, these parenting styles often clash for multiple types of reasons.
The other night, my stepson (13) wanted to go to a fall festival at his school. Totally ok. In fact, more than ok-we were happy he wanted to go! Our only request before he left? Vacuum upstairs (a 1.5 minute task) and check in via text every hour while there (he would be there parent-free, so this was for safety).
The first check in time came…and went. We texted first, then called, and no answer whatsoever. I discovered while waiting to hear from him that he had not completed the vacuuming (that he said he had done, as he was walking out the door.)
The fall festival was three hours long, from 4:30-7:30. Originally, he was set to stay until it ended. However, because he did not check in on time (we finally heard from him 35 minutes after his check in time, where he said he “forgot” to check in) and he didn’t only NOT do his chore, but lied about doing so…I suggested he come home early from the party (only 1 hour early). My husband was not happy about this idea. I could see in his eyes that it killed him to tell his son to be home early (understandably so).
Having parented his older brother through the teen years, one thing I learned (too late at that) was that, when it comes to teens, you have to set a standard and stick to it from day one…or else the teen years go awry (like with my oldest stepson—-although he is doing great now at 19 years old!).
I explained this to my husband, and he reluctantly stuck by the “you need to be home at 6:30” deal with our son…still, reluctantly.
This may not seem like a big deal to some, but when it is bio dad’s feelings up against stepmom’s feelings, it’s hard…really hard.
Turns out, our son was upset but got over it within moments of being home, and sat down to enjoy a good book for that hour he would’ve been at the party.
He is the type of child that actually learns from his mistakes, and I know he will not make this mistake again with us (at his mom’s may be a different story, but we have no control over that.)
The moral of this story? Heck, I don’t even know. Just a story in the life of a stepmom who is trying to find that perfect balance that doesn’t exist-but is doing so because she loves and cares for her husband and stepchildren.
If you enjoyed this post and would like to read more stepmom-related posts, check out The Stubborn Stepmom and also my blog “for the stubborn stepmom” post! If you simply enjoy mom-related posts, check out my “how to wake up before your children” post and “how to be a productive mom” post.
Until next time…thanks for reading.