Maleficent's Guide To Step Parenting(327 Posts)
I have been much maligned as a step-mother over the years and so misrepresented, even I sometimes wonder what is truth and fiction. The sad fact is that people will always believe the child over the step-mother, no matter how outrageous the story and accusations.
Take my step child, Snow White. Ran off and shacked up with 12 men in a squat. Doing so many drugs she thought she could speak to animals FFS. (Lets face it, she didn't get called "snow white" for no reason IYSWIM.) I rescue her from herself with an intervention and a stay at the Priory and what do I hear back? Magic Mirrors, wood cutters and poisoned apples! And people believed her.
However, I know now where I went wrong and look back on those times thinking "If only I had had someone to show me the way". So here it is, dear step mothers. The Mumsnet Guide to being a stepmother. Instead of worrying, just ask "What would Maleficent Do?" and follow these 12 steps to become the perfect Mumsnet Step Parent.
All of the following advice has been given to step parents in one form or another on Mumsnet discussions.
1. You may call yourselves step mothers, because that is what you are.
2. It's wrong to refer to yourself as mother in any form as it detracts from a child's real mother.
3. You should not try to be a mother to a step-child as they already have one.
4. If you don't act motherly you are rejecting the child and this can damage them and cause emotional problems later in life.
5. It is OK to think your own child and the children of your friends and the children at your child's school are horrible.
6. Your DH or DP's Children aren't horrible it is you making them that way as they can sense that you don't like them.
7. You must not declare that you love your stepchild or expect your step child to love you as that is not natural and they already have a mum.
8. You should automatically love your step children and if you can't you are bad and should leave your DH / DP.
9. If the children live with their mum, you should never change any payments of maintenance as it is unfair on the child.
10. If the child comes to live with you, the mum should not have to pay maintenance as it is your job to support them as you chose to be with a man who had children already.
11. You should not distance yourself from your step children as they will sense this and it will make them feel unwelcome.
12. As an adult its up to you to put your emotions to one side and distance them from your step children as showing how you feel will make them feel unwelcome.
You know. Reading this back, I think I can summarise this so much better.
1. Damned if you do.
2. Damned if you don't.
Now, off you go and get back to being Man Eating, Child Stealing Whores
Yes, this is my life!
Can I add one?
"Never, ever "agree" with your DH that one of his children has behaved badly. Even though you have been looked to for an acknowledgement of this".
My youngest "step" is 17. She ignores me, does the same to her dad, looks utterly utterly pissed off that she has to visit, wants for nothing. When her lack of "whatever" has caused her dad to display that wounded look I hate to see (because HE IS A GOOD FATHER) and I make the appropriate comment.......... IT IS NEVER THE CORRECT THING TO SAY.
If your SS walks past you in the lounge in the house you are half paying for and cleaning, cooking and washing in for all the occupants including SS - and totally blanks you on his way out - and then your DH arrives home from dropping your grandchild off at your daughters and comments that your daughter was a bit ignorant - DO NOT UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES POINT OUT THE IRONY IN THAT AND GENTLY SUGGEST HIS SON IS A TAD IGNORANT AT TIMES. TRUST ME THERE WILL BE EXTENUATING CIRCUMSTANCES TO HIS SONS IGNORANCE.
Oh and WENDY - an antidote to the 'I can say things about my kids but you cant - or even nod in agreement' - syndrome. ! - sorry that needs work - needs to be more snappy and catchy .
What I do now is stop DH in his tracks - the second he starts to moan about his son - 'I'M NOT INTERESTED - I'M NOT ALLOWED TO COMMENT - SO DONT TELL ME ABOUT IT'
Infuriates DH no end. Does it change him though ?
...er....... that'll be a NO
Ah, to know we are not alone, after all!
Suda...? You're not really doing time are you? You're quite a legend on MN, I believe?
...and 5 & 6, and 6 & 7 and so on.
Its about how the 'advice' given to SPs contradicts itself on a daily basis. Tongue firmly in cheek.
Having 4 kids ignoring you / talking about your home as "Dad's home" / leaving stuff all over floor for you to pick up / stealing from your home / lying to you / DP / each other / constantly listening to them telling you how much better they are / their school is / their Mum is etc. / making demands instead of asking nicely / screaming when they can't get their own way / being left for hours at a time with step children while DP works or runs other child around / either listening to incessant whinging when given a chore or simply completely ignored / not giving you a minutes peace from 6am to 10pm and you have to smile and agree with DP about what lovely step children you have.
If DS asks to finish something on X box however, he is the devil child and should be reprimanded severely and when DP mentions 3 times that he will switch off his game in the future to "get him back", I am supposed to agree what a good idea this is.
Can you tell I am looking forward to the weekend? Not!
Yes - keep laughing REDHEN - I'm sure eventually the nice men will come and take you away too.
Just think we might end up in neighbouring
Message withdrawn at poster's request.
Thanks Reality - love Gaiman and that is deliciously dark!
Can I add some advice I have received from MN:
1 - never expect any extra money from your ex for your child because it is now your new partners job as step-parent to provide for you and said child because that is what he signed up for when you all moved in together.
2 - always graciously encourage your new partner to pay extra maintanence to his ex because she is the one carrying the burden of the childcare and if he doesnt pay up it is only their child who will suffer.
Thank god that dad's are all bottomless pits of money hey
I don't think 1 and 2 contradict each other
I have never seen anyone on MN (or anywhere else) object to the term "stepmother", if the woman in question is married to the father
referring to yourself as a "mother" is rather different and does cross a line
Oh yes and even though you spend every saturday ferrying your DSD to and from dance classes while her mother enjoys 'me time' don't think for a second that you are allowed to receive any praise or display any outward pride when the child performs their yearly show, showasing skills gained through aformentioned classes.
It's her mother's chance for some glory as she created her after all.
roland I think Mal was refering to when your not allowed to consider yourself a step mother until you're married. A lot of the time you have no intention of getting married because its not something you're in to but may have been in the child's life as a mother-type-figure for years.
Is it my 1 & 2 that you don't think contradict each other, or OP?
I meant the OP
if not married, I think Dad's girlfriend is appropriate
Isn't the point that even with step attached to mother, it's "not allowed". I think lots of us have been referred to in less than complimentary terms by the ex. I was either "her" or "that fat cow" for a long time .
I love the summary, but can I add:
Damned if you do
Damned if you don't
And if neither applies something that you've never done or would do will be fabricated so you can be damned
I actually think 'Dad's girlfriend' is a bit rude. Depending on the circumstance of course but in my case I am not married to DP but I've been here for 3 years and we have DSD 3 weekday nights a week and 3 out of every 4 weekend days/nights so I would like to be able to at least be refered to as 'step-mum'
However, I am 'the new girlfriend' said with a sneer... es 'new' after threee years...
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