Coping with new baby and DSC(12 Posts)
Hi step mums and step dads
Need some advice yet again... I'm 7 months pregnant with my second child, plus I have four of my husbands children who live with us full time (19,17,15 and 14 years old.) Times are hard as some of you reading this will have seen in my previous thread. I'm growing increasingly worried about separation anxiety with my first child who will only be 18 months when my next baby is born. Tonight my eldest SD joked that when my little baby girl is born she is going to steal her from me. I got quite defensive and said my little baby will not be leaving my arms. She then said that she would steal my son instead. I know she was only joking but I can't help but feel sad knowing that my time will become limited with my son, because of the birth of my daughter. I just never expected that I would be sharing any of my children with anyone other than my husband. Being a new mum and recently having to step into the role of step mum too is extremely challenging. Any ideas or tips on how to deal with this paranoia and how can I control my SC or at least my emotions towards everyone during this next phase in life. I can't help but feel deeply sad that I might lose the close connection I have with my little boy. I guess all us mums go through it, but how do I manage these emotions as well as the needs of my SC.
Thanks for listening once again.
TBH it sounds like you have an anxiety issue not a step children issue. I'm not going to flame you because actually it sounds like you are not in a great place but your reactions to your SD's comment is not normal and your SC do not need controlling. It is odd to consider your step children having a relationship with their brother/sister as sharing.
Are you usually this anxious?
Lol! I don't have an anxiety issue. I'm pregnant and am still trying to come to terms of being a new mum as well as a step mum. Why is my reaction to my SD not normal? Is what she said right? She's 17... They've only been living with me full time for 6 months so how am I meant to accept the entire family as my own in such a short period of time? Building a blended family takes years. Im here for advice, not to be judged...
I understand the feeling of sadness that, with a new baby, you'll have less time to spend with ds. Lots of second-time mums worry they'll never be able to love a new baby as much as they love the first, and that the first will feel pushed out.
But it sounds as if your 17yo dsd is willing to be hands-on helpful. Can you persuade yourself this is a blessing rather than a threat? If she's willing to cuddle your baby while you pay attention to ds, and/or play with ds while you tend to dd, you might find she's a great source of support.
Thx HirplesWithHaggis. It is a blessing, I know you are right. I guess it's just a fear I have of losing my connection with my son. She is a good girl and is super helpful. She loves kids, which is great. I guess I need to stop worrying and wait until everything happens. I think perhaps her choice of wording was wrong. I have so much on with all the SC, my own son and the running of the house. The whole thought of bringing a new baby into this crazy environment at the moment scares the living daylights out of me... You are right though, I need to look at the positive side of all this, rather than any negative. All of the SC are lovely kids and together we are building a family. It just takes time and space, which are two things I don't get much of x
Your life has been turned totally upside down recently. If you're 7 months gone, you may not even have known you were pregnant when you're suddenly invaded by a bunch of teenagers? That's a lot to take on board, and I take my hat off to you, I really do!
It's good that they're helpful kids, though I daresay there will be teen dramas in the days ahead too. How much does your dh contribute in terms of childcare?
You won't lose the closeness with your ds, I promise you that. You have many years of laughs, hugs and snuggles ahead with him, and with your dd when she comes.
(And a supply of babysitters to give you some of that time and space you need... )
It's been full on since they all came to live with us. The younger two arrived first and then the older two. I have had some massive adjusting to do, as the kids have had to do coming to live with my husband and I (new rules, new personalities, new environment etc.) but we've all coped really well, even my DS. But yes you're right they all come with dramas. Particularly the younger two DSD. Still at school, peer pressure trying to fit in etc. it's been tough and I've really had to step up in trying to help guide them, in absence of their mother (they have nothing to do with her.) my DH is very good. We just don't get enough time together and I don't feel like I get a break. Life feels a bit relentless at the moment, but the reward is watching all the children grow and develop. I need to be stricter with getting my husband to give me some time out, but then I end up feeling guilty thinking he works all day and it's just as hard for him. My DH and I could do with a little holiday, but I'd hate to leave my ds. Again feeling this full on separation anxiety. Is it because I'm pregnant do you think? X
A friend of mine has step kids with a similar age gap with her own kids.
They developed the most amazing relationship as the little ones grew up from babyhood. There was very little us/them - in their eyes, the babies were their siblings, pure and simple.
Think of it in terms of your elder child always having someone to pay attention to him / play with him if you're busy with the baby - I know that would be brilliant for my DS with my second on the way, I feel so worried about him feeling pushed out or neglected, and we have no family nearby.
Think of all the different role models your kids will have - the interests, and jobs and all those older people looking out for them, cheering them on, going to their sports matches, helping with their school projects or explaining things that aren't an area of expertise for you.
And Yeo, think of the babysitting. . DH and I get a night out together a couple of times a year and it costs a fortune in babysitting. We've figured out that we might manage a weekend away together in about 15 years' time.
I get that it's tough. But this has the potential to be something really positive for your kids. I think the key at this point is that you don't need to see them as your family - but you do need to recognise that they're your children's family.
Yes, not Yeo! I have yet to train this phone.
All mums worry about the impact of a new baby on their first child - it's totally normal. But there isn't a finite amount of love - your capacity to love will just increase. When your baby is born neither child will have less of a bond with you or need you less, just because they have siblings. They will both always know you are their mum, even if they also have lots of lovely older siblings who are involved on their everyday lives. Being close to your dsc will not take away anything from you because your children's capacity to love will also expand to include all their siblings as well as their parents.
In the end you have to remember that children can never have too many people to love them and you are all very lucky that your dsc are so willing to love and to help. This can only be to your own children's advantage in the long term.
I actually do completely sympathise with you, having been in a very similar situation. And there can be a bit of competitiveness going on. I don't know what your situation is like - but I really did have to tell my DSD of 17 years to back off. Which is a shame, like other posters have said, of course it would be great to have a 'helper' and great for everyone to bond too. My DSD adopted I 'will not be told' attitude and went into battle with me if I asked her to do things (e.g. close the safety gate)
But that has to be done where you feel more or less in control, and I think that there are so many of them and you are juggling this fairly new, and two very young ones soon - I can imagine why you probably are feeling quite overwhelmed and not able to manage the other girls. It is totally normal to feel like you are.
I coped partly by:
Asking DSCs to do specific things with the kids - feed them - push them out in the buggy etc
Having a quieter space - sometimes in my room to just have a less chaotic space
Not worrying about what anyone else thought or challenged me - they are our babies/kids and it isn't for other chlidren to say things like 'he'll be OK' on safety issues. Just stand your ground.
It just sounds a little overwhelming - don't worry I've also heard all the 'well you should be grateful you have on hand babysitters' - or 'why are you stopping so and so from doing that with the child, it's her sister/brother'. YOU are the parent here and your priority is to parent these young ones first. The other kids have years ahead to bond and there's not reason they can't do that in a way that is safe and not bossying you around too.
I'm the youngest of 6 (4 + 2) I always saw them all as my siblings and it was great. I would wish my situation on everyone. Not always so easy for the older kids to be honest.
My step mum never did them and us. She was mum to all of us.
I saw more of my siblings and less of my parents, because big families are a different dynamic, but I honestly think from the childs perspective that's a great thing.
Think a little longer term. The older ones will be moving out and on in the next few years. I felt totally bereft as the youngest when that happened. Enjoy the time with all of them, let the oldest help as much as they want to. Soon enough it will be you and your husband with 2 youngish kids, who are already fun to be around.
Your babies will always have a bunch of people looking after and out for them - they are really really lucky!
It may not feel like it today but your situation is pretty ideal if you can roll with it.
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