Does it get easier?

(19 Posts)
jt2345 Fri 22-May-20 09:45:22

Hi all,
I'm new to all this, been with a guy for just under a year and he's got a 3 and 6 year old. They are living with us 50% of the time. Before Corona I moved out when they came as we wanted my introduction to be gradual, but since all this has happened it's been full steam ahead having them every other week!

Just wondering, in your step parenting life, does it get easier? I've found the first few months really tough.

Has Corona made things more challenging for anyone?


OP’s posts: |
AH89 Fri 22-May-20 14:19:55

Hi J,
I’m in somewhat of the same boat as you except recently married!
Husband has a 5 year old, she lives with us full time.

I find it extremely tough. Corona has just amplified that.
There was no way I could’ve known what I was truly getting myself into - I think if I had, I might have thought twice and stopped myself falling in love.
It’s the emotional toll it takes on you to look after a child that’s not yours.
I’m also wondering if it gets better! Unfortunately for me, it hasn’t.
She is loved and looked after by us both, people say she has never been happier or healthier since I came into her life so I must be doing something right. But it’s draining and I’m exhausted, sometimes resentful.

aSofaNearYou Fri 22-May-20 14:26:32

Honestly, no, and I hate saying it because I know it's not the answer you're hoping for. But if you are already having doubts then I would avoid committing to this situation if at all possible. Look at the situation you are in and ask yourself if you think you would look back and be happy if your whole life was like this, because it will be if you stay with him.

jt2345 Fri 22-May-20 14:49:38

@AH89 I am glad I am not alone, we can do this! How long has she lived with you?

Do you wish you'd called it off early on? I honestly think he is my soulmate and I don't want the fact that he has kids to mess everything up.

Do you think it will be better once we have kids ourselves?

OP’s posts: |
Lailaloo747 Fri 22-May-20 14:55:52

I think it does....
I’ve been a SM for 5 years and the first 3 years were hard work. It’s difficult trying to ‘parent’ someone else’s children in a way they want you to....especially if it’s different to how you parent your own children.
Me and my OH had many disagreements about house rules but we’re all on the same page now, thankfully.
Just remember, however hard you’re finding it, the children are probably finding it harder.
2 different homes, 2 different sets of rules etc.
I think to be a SM you have to be quite thick skinned. I found it tough to start with...doing all the washing, cooking, homework, school runs etc for 2 children that some days hardly acknowledged my existence! I think a lot of that came from worrying about getting too close to me and upsetting their mum. Now their mum has been in a new relationship for a few years, it’s much easier!
Good luck OP!

hulahoopqueen Fri 22-May-20 15:15:34

I really agree with @Laila - the best thing you can do is sit down with your partner and agree how you will work together to present a united front as a team.
Also make sure that when DCSs are not there that you and DP are making time for yourselves as a couple to rest and recharge where you can, it will really help when the kids come back to you and you’re ready to get stuck into stuff with them!
I would say that under a year is not long, so keep your chin up because at the ages your DCSs are, it’s very young and they will have the chance to grow up with you which is so rewarding.
Try finding some activies they can do with just you and treat it as bonding time - whether it’s gardening and planting some seeds with them, or maybe learning a sport or something with them, this can be really helpful for building relationships.
You got this OP!

BadgerBadgerMushroom Fri 22-May-20 15:21:32

I think it does get easier. My DSD and DSS live with us most of the time and stay at mums EOW. Like PP have said sometimes you can feel side lined and like you are not important but when it gets to a stage where you really know them it can be really lovely. I really miss them when they are away now. Its taken a few years though to get into that settled routine and they are at an age now where they are beginning to compare rules/houses etc but hopefully DP and I can support them through that as much as their mum the other end. Our biggest problem is their mum and how she talks about us but we try to let it go and don't retaliate and hopefully will help them.


TammyLynn47 Fri 22-May-20 17:01:44

Hi, I am engaged to be married . When we first meant he was the most loveable man and we did everything together . Than his 14 year old daughter didn’t like it that he didn’t ask her permission to date me , ask me to move or even marry me.

She has caused a lot of problems like calling children aid on us and making up lies. By taking off when she is here visiting or calling her dad and names because we have rules.

Her dad explained that she never had rules before or even consequences before. He told me if she didn’t like anyone he was dating he would leave them. She won’t even talk to him now or see him until he leaves me .

I feel like our relationship is falling apart. We don’t show affection to one another anymore we barley talk anymore. Our house is really quiet . He is always making up excuses for her and why she is they way she is .

I don’t even feel like it’s my home anymore and when she is here I walk in eggshells and I don’t really sleep .

I am losing someone I thought was my soulmate.

CoronaIsComing Fri 22-May-20 17:51:53

No, I’m sorry but no it doesn’t. I found that it got harder when we had our own child, partly due to the age gap and partly because SS’s life at his mum’s was worlds apart from DS’s life (that SS also enjoyed) with us. Privately, as well the fact is that you probably won’t feel the same about your step children as your own and you will have to work very hard not to show that.

To be fair, it does get easier eventually, as SS is now 20 and an adult.

AllsortsofAwkward Fri 22-May-20 20:56:33

Me and dh got together when I was 23 and I had ds who was 2 we been together for almost ten years and have another 2 dc, we have no issues not sure if it's the same because my dh is the stepfather but my ex and his dw have been together then same amount of time and have one dc. We both content in our own relationships and all 4 cooparent when needed with a rather blotchy 12 year old grin

HotSauceCommittee Fri 22-May-20 21:02:56

I found it tough to start with...doing all the washing, cooking, homework, school runs etc for 2 children

You’ll find it easier if you don’t take responsibility for these things. Sure, help out, but they have a father. Don’t do the wife work for him.
I am not a step mother, but I don’t see why you’d take on all the domestic and home work when the kids father should do it.

TheMotherofAllDilemmas Fri 22-May-20 23:33:28

First time around I found it very easy, lovely kids, no problem at all, I missed them for years... but then their parents and I had very similar parenting styles.

This time around dad doesn’t bother to correct them, mum is a mega sulk, prone time huge explosions and drama. The kids are very manipulative and entitled teen boy has violent tantrums and younger girl’s way of sulking is to stop eating. Am I going to join households? Fuck no. Actually, I’m still surprised we are still together, wouldn’t blame him if he ends it on my reluctance to spend time with his kids, but honestly, I tried hard but they are awful. I cannot bring myself to spend the rest of my life dealing with such hell in alternate weekends.

If you think it is too much, better to run on time before things get more serious and complex.

dontdisturbmenow Sat 23-May-20 07:47:06

Don't make Alice with an who has very different parenting styles and kids already old enough to be settled in that style.

It's a recipe for arguments, resentment and frustrations. Finding out what type a parent a man is should become of the first things to identify when considering a relationship with a father. And not talking about the 'oh he is so amazing with them, takes them out to the park and talks so lovingly about them' but how much he gets involved with their day to day life, how he coped with routine bits (ie. the hiring part that too many men can't be bothered with) and disciplining.

TheMotherofAllDilemmas Sat 23-May-20 08:44:50

@TammyLynn47... end it and move on. When you have a teen behaving as a wronged wife and a dad enabling such disturbing behaviour the best way forward is to run to the mountains NOW , because you will end up running to them anyway but with far more baggage and difficulties in the future. Don’t get married.

Some men have unhealthy platonic love attachments to their daughters disguised as “being a good Involved parent”. There are every kind, from the one that keeps reassuring the girl she will always come at whatever cost to others (from where you go for the day to deciding who the parent should be with) , to the men who say they just need a woman their age to satisfy their sexual needs as they regard their daughter as their “partner”.

TheMotherofAllDilemmas Sat 23-May-20 08:45:52

*she will always come first

Electrical Sat 23-May-20 11:42:00

Can you explain the thinking behind how you could possibly imagine bringing even more kids into the world could improve this situation? My mind is blown that anyone could think this.

JoandLily Sat 23-May-20 15:24:19

Hi, I met my partner 7 years ago and he is the first man I had been with who had a child. It is without doubt so much harder than I ever imagined and it has got harder. I would never recommend anyone to get with someone who has a child.
I constantly wishing my life away to when my SS is an adult and no longer dependant.

TheStuffedPenguin Sat 23-May-20 17:19:30

I am not a step mother, but I don’t see why you’d take on all the domestic and home work when the kids father should do it

It is SO easy to say this and as you say you have never been there - what do you think happens ? You wash your own clothes and you say to him oh you have to wash and iron the kids and your own stuff? You have to shop for the things your kids eat and cook it ? Get real!

User137 Sat 23-May-20 20:48:54

Under a year is a really short period of time. The research I read suggested the first maybe even 3 years are tough with a step child as you both find your places but it does get better in the right circumstances.

I found learning it’s okay to have some time out - take a nice bath, go for a walk (can’t do much else at the moment!) to get some time to yourself. Best to spend less time with everyone but it be higher quality because you feel refreshed when you do and can put energy into it than just feeling you have to be there all the time and struggling.

Also I read a comment about having your own child with a step child, having a step child is, I think, always going to be hard work and very difficult in a different way to having your own but that doesn’t mean it can’t work well with your own. My step children and own have an amazing bond.

It is all about the strength of your relationship with your partner, whether you can work well with him, you’ll have times when you disagree, because you’ll all trying to learn how to make it work, but that’s okay.

However, I do think it will always be more complex, and so what you need to weigh up is if your relationship with your partner can last and is strong. If it is then it will get easier.

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