What advice do you wish you'd been given...(13 Posts)
....before starting to live full time with a stepchild?
Dp and his DD11 will be moving in in 4 weeks. We've known each other for 2.5 yrs and I have DD11 and DD9.
I think I have a good relationship in the main with DSD, but I know that it's a huge change for us all.
Many thanks in advance!
Message withdrawn at poster's request.
We've had the house extended and the kids have a room each (all the same size).
Alpaca: I think advice about detaching is really what I'm after! As DSD lost her Mum when she was 5, it's a slightly unusual set-up. I want to be there for her like I am my own daughter, but I also know she has a fabulous father and that her relationship with him is always going to be her primary relationship.
I want to find a balance between being calmly and breezily detached and stepping in where I think I can help (eg. Periods, which I've been supporting her with).
Listen to how cheerfully naive I am!
Sorry, that should have read DS9.
The girls will be going to the same secondary school in September.
Good luck! I mean that sincerely.
You say that you already have a good relationship with her, and that it has been 2.5 years since you have known her - which all seem pretty good foundations.
I wish I'd sat down with my OH, maybe even with a counsellor and talked about 'possible difficulties' and how we'd handle them e.g. maybe for you - what if the two 11 year olds fall out/compete.
I wish me and OH had both agreed that it was normal to have difficulties, normal for DSC to be very resentful, normal for us to love our own children more. But that doesn't mean it has failed or it can't work.
Also I wish I'd got stuck in more as the 'joint head of household' - basic respect comes before everything - and resisted being the 'nice mate or friend' to the kids, and seriously lowered my expectations. Their mother will always come first and their loyalty will always be to her - no matter how much you put in (sorry, in my experience!).
Sorry hadn't seen that her mother had died - her loyalty to her mother would remain - maybe even tell DSD that you don't want to or will not ever try to replace her mother - and that her Dad is her main carer - but that you will treat her fairly 'normally' ie be a parent and some things may be a little different that she is used to. And keep the communication open. Maybe even go through some basics like meal times, school work, what to expect with your OH.
And about periods etc - speaking as a step mum to 4 DSDs in teenage years - I got a couple of those 'growing up' books - left them around in bedrooms - they were all completely leafed through from cover to cover! Their mum had had the 'chat' but I always had good supplies of whatever they needed!
My mum died when I was 7, Dad remarried when I was 10, DBs 13 and 17 and DS 19. She had DSD19 & DSB17. For me she has always been my mum. I have very few memories of my own mum. I was so thrilled to have someone permanent in my life who treated me like a daughter, nagging and all, and who took a real interest in me. Harder for the older children though. My DB who was 13 was like me, and was delighted to have someone who defended us and was genuinely interested in us.
Run run and run some more if I'd know, it's not so much dsd I love her, but her mother is a total nightmare! I wasn't ow didn't meet dp till they had been split 6months but she hates me, I've tried to be ok but nothing works with her
Wallypops your post made me cry! I'm glad you had a positive experience.
I think I'm most concerned about being able to let the small stuff go. I've had this house to myself for 3 years now so I suppose I also feel like I won't have full control over my home any more.
I appreciate the replies.
My DSC were all grown up when I met DH, so never had any of them live with us, and tbvh, I don't think I could have coped with it anyway. especially as DH is very much a Disneydad! There are occasions where one DSC (with issues) has to stay with us, I find it so hard because I feel like a ghost in my own home! I certainly didn't sign up for it, when we married, but there you go....it has to be dealt with!
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