Blended families. I hate the phrase, but until we can come up with a better one. There it is.
I have found as a step-mother, that there is very little I can do to control how my step-children feel about me. There are so many elements at play beyond my control that my only choice is to cross my fingers, and hope for the best.
One thing I have learned lately… I can’t parent them the same way.
You can yell at your own kids for leaving their shit all over the house and it’s okay. Well, Benjamin is used to it anyway. He knows that if he leaves a pile of his stuff in the middle of the kitchen floor after school “mom will freak out.” Then he glares at me, tells me I am being mean (rightfully so) and huffs off. But, when I scold Lily and Cohen for the same offense their reaction is looking at me with darted eyes filled with fear. I immediately feel terribly and wish I could recant.
Their relationship with their mother dictates my relationship with them.
This revelation has been like finding a clue in the midst of a dark, dark cave of the unknown. Now there is a little sliver of light to a better understanding and I only hope I can find more and turn on more lights before they are teenagers and all hell breaks loose.
Until then, would you look at this bunch?
All big and stuff. My amazing husband took this picture, running down to capture them on the fence before their first day of fifth and third grades.
Alaina (the evil step-mother).