Question of SM's Do you think DH should influence SK to acknowledge you on mothers day if you are an active SM (50/50) or do you think DH should sit back and only do something if SK's suggest?
Just wondering what your thoughts were...
depends on their age I think. If they are young children then he needs to facilitate something, but if they are adults then probably not...
I don't think it's a bad thing for a father to remind his children of all the things a stepmom does for them... it doesn't matter the age of the child, including adult children.
Should he tell his children to acknowledge the stepmom, no. But, I do think sometimes what parents, including stepparents can be taken for granted. My dad, to this day, reminds my sister of all the times my stepmom went down to the school to help her in dealing with my nephew, or babysat for her, or did nice things for her. My sister 'forgets' the nice things my stepmom did. My sister did not like my stepmom, so she probably thinks of the things she didn't like about my stepmom instead of thinking about the nice things she did. It is still the choice of the child to acknowledge the stepparent, but yes... the dad should especially remind kids that don't like the stepparent of the nice/good things the stepmom has done.
I think it should be up to the stepmom and kids. If it's a good relationship and SM wants to be acknowledged, then yes DH should facilitate. If she doesn't want to be, don't force it. If the kids have issues with their own mother, don't put them in the middle. A made up holiday isn't the time to force relationships.
Even in the best of situations it can be hard on both parties. If SM does a lot for kids, DH should certainly remind them but Mothers Day isn't the only reason why he should do it. Its a commercial holiday and if she feels the need to be owed on a certain day, than somethings off in the dynamics of the relationship. And thats where DH should start EVERY DAY to facilitate. If SM is doing too much, thats the real problem.
I am not a SM, but if I heard my X was every encouraging my kid to show any appreciation of ANY SM on mothers day I would go threw the roof. Any work SM does is on behalf of DAD. HE should be parenting and HE should SM appreciation. If he cant or wont parent, kid belongs at moms. Kid did not ask for SM, dad did.
what a sad world to live in kkny... I thought I had problems! There are many things I do for SD, some on behalf of dad, some have NOTHING to do with dad.... I do them because I care about her & want her to have experiences that neither of her parents would give her... like having birthday parties & going to swim lessons. Her mom won't do, dad can't. I guess your answer would be to send SD to live with mom since dad is working & can't take her to do those things... yeah right! Her mom is too busy with boyfriend & her new baby now... before she did nothing anyways, now she just has an excuse to do nothing. How sad that you would think that someone doing something for a child should not be appreciated by the child... just because she is a stepmom. If my daughter's friends' mother did something nice for my daughter, I would tell my daughter to say thank you.. because she didn't have to do anything nice for her, even if she didn't ask for it. It is teaching children common courtesy to thank others when they do something nice...
Personally, I am not really celebrating "Mother's Day" today. I am at work... again. My kids show me they love me all year long & I don't need flowers & cards to know they love and appreciate me. If anything, it would have been nice to stay home & sleep in.. just because I have been working 7 days a week for several weeks & taking care of a sick grandbaby & now I am feeling a bit sick.
I think I live in a pretty nice world. Saying thank you is one thing, recognizing a SM on mothers day (unless mom is mia) is another. And it should be dad who should be appreciative.
Saying thank you & showing appreciation is appropriate when someone does something for you, whether you ask for it or not. Mother's Day is a commercial holiday and anyone that takes it so seriously as to give it such great significance on the importance of one's role, might have bigger issues to deal with... it's just another day.
If your grown kids don't call you on Mother's day, is it a big deal? I think it's a bigger deal if they go weeks or months without calling but then call you only on your birthday & holidays.. including Mother's Day. What happens day to day is more important than what happens on one single day that they have given a title to.
Not to demean the day, but really... it is just a day set aside to celebrate with your mom (or mom with her kids) that hopefully they get the day off from work & acknowledge the role a mother (birth, step, adoptive, foster, or just a motherly type) has had in influencing you or your life.... and really, that celebration can take place any day of the year... sorta like Valentines Day. Getting chocolate & roses on Valentines day means nothing if he's just doing it because he feels obligated to 'because it's Valentines Day'. My DH shows me throughout the year, that I am his Valentine & the love of his life. We rarely do anything on Valentine's day because everywhere is commercial crap & crowds, trying to make that day special.
Yes, dad is appreciative for all I do for his child. To be honest, SD's mom should be appreciative too. No, she didn't ask me to do nice things for her daughter but she is not willing to them herself. and yes, their child should say thank you. If they don't want me to do those things, then they can decline... I will save my time & energy. But, SD is asking DH if she can go to swim team again this year. I guess he should tell her no, he has to work and her mom is too busy with the baby.. SORRY.
No, as I said, I think DH should be the one thanking you. These things are his responsibility.
why would I take SD to swim team... take time away from my work & pay for it, if she isn't expected to thank me? If she doesn't care to be thankful, then what would I bother for?
When I pick up SD from school or fix dinner for the family, including her or do her laundry, DH is thankful for that... those are things I do for him. He is responsible for those things. Taking her to after school sports, activities, etc. are things I do for HER. He would tell her no, he can't do it because he has to work & his schedule isn't as flexible as mine. Her mom isn't going to do it. They are not necessary, they are extra's. Just because I am able to do those things, does not mean I have to...
OMG kkny, I'm gob smacked by your response, more than gob smacked, disgusted really.
Your comment makes me think that you might feel you "own" your kids. And that if another woman was mature, kind, loving enough to parent your child you'd be small enough to drive a wedge where none needed to be. It just shows your insecurity as a parent in my opinion.
I celebrate my kids SM... And feel damned glad to be able to do it. She's given of herself, loved on my children and been generous to a fault.
Your attitude only promotes blended families to divide and conquer. And why would a SM be such a threat to you as a parent I wonder?
I pity the "nice world" you've got going on.
You know KKNY, when I first started dating my DH, he told me immediately about his son. The more serious we became, the more I was advised by not only my family and friends but his family as well. I was told that if we got married, I was NOT marrying just my DH but his son as well. And I was told that if I was not prepared for that then we shouldn't get married. And I embraced that role. My DH works full time and goes to school full time and is appreciative of everything I do for SS. But I also expect my SS to show appreciation of what I do. Its called manners and respecting your elders.
Manners is one thing. Mothers day is another. You didnt marry the kid, you married the dad.
No I married both! You can't separate the kid from the dad. Because the son's relationship takes precedence over my relationship with his dad. I don't expect SS to acknowledge me on Mother's Day because he spends the day with his BM. But if he was at my house, then yes, I would like some acknowledgement but I wouldn't expect it.
KKNY I would feel very sorry for any SM that was involved with your kids.
"No I married both! You can't separate the kid from the dad"
Of course you can. When kid is 18, kid never has to see you again. The son has a relationship with his dad.
If you get divorced, absent highly unusual situation, you will not owe CS for your stepkid.
Wow feel sorry for whatever family your daughter decides to marry into .... just sad!
and her children.
"Mother's Day is a commercial holiday and anyone that takes it so seriously as to give it such great significance on the importance of one's role, might have bigger issues to deal with... "
Yep. does anyone here know how M.Day came about? anyhoo....
I told my DH (Sfather) that he needed to be pro-active for Mday with my DD because she wanted to do something but didn't quite have the drive. She's 8. I think 0-18 the parents are pretty much responsible for making sure the other parent is cared for. After that, if you didn't raise 'em right... well...
I got breakfast (that I helped cook and clean for) and dinner (that I made and shopped for) and a happy family and a from the garden bouquet. I'm happy. Expectations are low.
If my DD had a SM, I would expect her to make a card or acknowledge in some way...
Here's an example. I used to get picked up by a friend's dad and taken to a class. Somehow it just worked out that he was the one who took me. He would take me for a meal after. One day I didn't thank him for the meal and he got pissed. I realized years later that it doesn't matter how many times someone helps you/does something for you... or if it's willing or spontanious or generous or they would have done it anyway...
YOU SAY THANK-YOU.
Period. Otherwise it's bad manners. And anyone who is a mother would realize it's not the gift, it's the feeling behind it.
KKNY, your DD is out of the house. For Dad to make any sort of deal out of SM/Mday would be ridiculous. I don't tell my SM happy mother's day. I met her when I was 18.
The U.S. has celebrated Mother's Day for about a century now, and it's interesting how we've adapted it to our modern family structure. Nowadays you see M-Day cards for mothers, stepmothers, people who have felt like a mother to you--and generic cards for people who are a mother but not yours--just a way to say "You are a great mom." I was noticing on Facebook this morning all the "Happy Mother's Day to all the moms and all the women who help raise children," etc.
The families I know have many different ways that they celebrate. In some, it is very much up to the children to make the cards, the breakfast, etc., with Dad's help and coaching if they are young. In other families, M-Day is a day for a man to honor the mother of his children, and he runs the show, even inviting the adult kids over--they might bring a card and a present, but it's Dad who puts it on.
In our family, SDs have done a Mother's Day brunch for BM with her DH; DH and I helped them pick out gifts for her when they were younger and even now, since they are college students, we pay. Then M-Day evening SDs, my kids, DH and I have all gone out to dinner and they give me a gift that they have selected with DH. Before the kids could drive, BM and I often ended up exchanging a little "Happy Mother's Day" hug.
Unless there is some reason the SKs should resent their stepmother (child abuse, neglect, etc.), it's nice for their dad to help them honor her on that day. Having a mom in his house is a nice thing!
KKNY, what a sad way to look at the parent-child relationship. That only money matters. And, maybe, DNA. Luckily, you are in the minority.
ulrike1, I also had many people wishing happy mother's day to me on facebook & at work... people that ask if I have kids & wish me a happy mother's day.
Maybe only people that have personal issues to deal with have a problem with being kind, teaching kindness or sharing. Maybe they have low self esteem, insecure or just plain bitter and full of hate. What a thing to teach kids!
It's so uplifting to have a view of the world that we are all a family, that ALL humans are interconnected and work together for a better life for all. That our species continues to grow and adapt and evolve. The petty, brutish idea that we are just amimals that promote our own self-interest and that of our genetic offspring is an outdated view.
I would rather pass on my cultural values than my genetic material any day.
"Unless there is some reason the SKs should resent their stepmother (child abuse, neglect, etc.), it's nice for their dad to help them honor her on that day. Having a mom in his house is a nice thing! "
Unless the mom is mia, a SM is not a mom (at least to that child, she may be mom to others). She can be helpful, a friend, akin to an aunt maybe. But she is not a mom.
As to anyone who feels sorry for any family my DD marries into, if she is already married to SM, how can she marry.
Yeah people, get with the program! Even if BM is a pedophile child beater, who is getting supervised visitation in her prison cell, she is still mom, damnit! It is her God-given right to have total control over her possessions, I mean children.
I explained all this to SS8 yesterday; he had made me a Mother's Day card and I ripped it up and threw it on the ground. I told him I'm not his mother and he knows it. I explained that he got one chance for a mother in life, unfortunately he got a crappy deal on it but as long as she bothers to see him even a couple of times a year, then that means she is Mom, he's stuck with that, and he is just SOL. For some reason he started to cry but I just walked away and figured DH could deal with it when he got home; after all, he's not my kid. (Hopefully it's obvious I'm being sarcastic.)
I specifically said where mom is MIA, situation is different. Courts control kids time with parents when parents can not agreee. Kids are NOT possessions -- they are not Dads to give a new mom to. Dad should not be "facilitating" or encouraging or requiring kids to treat SM as Mom. Of course kid can do whatever her wants re card. But the question what should dad facilitate. Dad should first facilitate DAD being parent for whatever parenting time he has. Second Dad should encourage child to be polite.
I find your POV to be so funny kkny. My SD got in the car last weekend and started telling us about what she did with her dad... er, stepdad. She corrected herself by changing it from dad to stepdad. Um, BM is still married to older sister's father and BM is not married to BF, whom she has either encouraged or required her kids to call him dad. (and think of as Stepdad... wonder how that is going to affect the kids if things don't work out with him) His kids are told to call her mom, which irks their BM... His kids LIVE WITH THEIR MOM... she is not MIA. SD's BM goes around their (small) town telling folks she is raising his kids, like the brady bunch... she actually refers to their "family" as the brady bunch. So, is it okay for MOM to have kids calling BF, "DAD"? and that's when kid LIVES WITH DAD... not just having an involved noncustodial dad!
Yesterday (Mother's Day) we picked up SD and she says she spent most of the day with grandma... driving out of town to take her sister's friend home while BM stayed home with BF & the baby. (and the town they went to is halfway to our house... we could have met up with them to save SD from being in the car an extra 2 hours, but I'm sure they never considered doing that. It might be considered doing DH a favor)
And yes, SD got in the car and her first words were "Happy Mother's Day Ima!"
Well, let's see, my DH had "parenting time" of 97% of the year last year. So BM is not, in her opinion, MIA. And who gets to make that determination? Mom could be gone 100% of the year because she was in very bad health or deployed in the military, and that does not mean that she's not a good mom, obviously; just one who has something going on right then and needs a bit of assistance. And I really don't think most kids wouldn't understand that, except very young ones.
Courts control kids time with parents when parents can not agreee. Um, not really. The courts do not force anyone to see their kids. So yeah, I agree that kids are not possessions; not of the father to force a "new Mom" on, nor that of a "mother" to deny a new "Mom" to (unless visitations are being denied or something). They are human beings who have the right to find their own happiness and love as best they can, same as the rest of us. And if their choices upset bad BM's or BD's; too bad for them.
It should be the Child's choice -- dad "influencing" child to treat SM as mom is not really child's choice. Its wrong to suggest child treat either step parent as parent.
"dad "influencing" child to treat SM as mom is not really child's choice. Its wrong to suggest child treat either step parent as parent."
Mom influencing child to treat BF as dad is not really child's choice... or is it okay when it's MOM making the choice?
How about a mom that influences a child to DISLIKE the SM? Is THAT wrong? What if the child lives with SM F/T? Even P/T, don't you think it will affect how kid is treated by SM if the kid is being a little sh!t to SM because mom wants him/her to. Is it wrong to suggest kids don't like SM because BM has issues of her own & doesn't like SM? Who is mom thinking of? Herself or her kid?
How sad it is when kids aren't allowed to make their own choice... well, they can choose~ as long as it doesn't upset mom.
Mother's Day has absolutely nothing to do with birth mothers, stepmothers, kids, fathers.
It has to do with womanhood and humanity, to prevent war.
Here is a link that might be useful: Mother's Day
Exactly, imamommy. For that matter, if BM is just so bitter and angry towards SM (for good reason or not), is it in the kids' best interests to discourage SM from being close to the kids? If every time SM does something special with the kids she or DH get an enraged screaming phone call, sooner or later SM's liable to stop doing anything on her own with kids. Great, BM "wins" - and next time Dad has to work during visitation time, rather than getting to go out and do something fun with SM, the children are sitting around the house with a quasi-babysitter who's afraid to cause any trouble with BM by actually spending any real time with them.
BM's should also keep in mind that if SM has new children, they will be your kids' half-brothers and half-sisters, whether you like it or not. So promoting animosity between SM and kids may put them into a position where they then have to choose between their half-siblings and their own mothers.
To answer the question: I would be fine with if the child wanted to do something.
I don't get too caught up in titles of Mom or Step-mom. As a mother - I love my daughter and step-daughter. I do for them and do things with them simply because i love them. I find it deplorable - the attitude that because I am a step-mother - i should do nothing for my step-daughter simply because I married her dad.
Why would I single out an innocent child, why would i ignore a child or not try my best for this child? How would i call myself a well-rounded mother by those actions.
Actions speak louder than words... and I believe when you love someone especially a child it is hard to just ignore them. The BM in my situation wants that.... i mean she wishes that i don't even feed my SD if she is hungry. What kinda crap is that?
I hope and pray - I never harbour that type of anger, hatred, malice, and horrible attitude that I can just overlook a child or ignore a child's needs as some would do when they don't care. That in my book is just sad.
Ima, if you read what I said, I clearly said it is wrong for child to be influenced to treat either stepparent as a parent. I am truly sorry some kids have mom who are MIA. But that doesnt excuse treating all SMs as moms.
I am truly sorry your husband cheated on you and caused your marriage to end and caused you pain, but that doesn't excuse spewing venom at every SM that is in a kids life and treating them as if they are irrelevant if a mom is in the picture. Kids have the capacity to love many people... not just one mom & one dad. More so, they deserve to be loved by many more people than just their mom & dad.
I think children should be nice to their stepparents as to any family members(except of course abuse situation). I also agree with imamommy that children can love many different people not just mom and dad.
But i also agree with kkny that it is wrong to influence children to treat stepparent as parent (unless parent is nonexistant). It is very easy to confuse and brainwash young kids.
let's see ashley's situation. her SD's BM made SD to call a stepfather "dad" as to not confuse a little baby. And she influenced SD to treat a stepparent as a "dad", and now who knows maybe it contributed to alienation of her dad? How is that OK?
My DD loves my parents, yet it would be stupid of me to say "they are your parents".
I was very close with my grandmother and for some time I and DD shared a house with grandma, when DD was little. DD treated her with outmost respect and loved her very much (passed away few years ago :(. yet she was "greatgrandma", not mom. How silly would it be for DD to introduce her as "mom" to people or me influence her to treat her as a parent. In fact my grandma would probably say "did you lose your mind?" LOL She was no nonsense lady.
If titles are not important then maybe DD should start calling me "auntie" or send me cards for father's day.
It is very important to love and respect other people, but they are not "mom and dad"
I disagree with your logic Finedreams. My DH and I have been married just shy of 4 years. SS's BM has been married about the same time. SS is 8. SS calls me whatever he wishes, sometimes its mom and sometimes it my first name. However, BM makes SS call his SF dad and treat him as dad. But this has not done anything to alienate SS. In fact, it has driven SS closer to dad and more time expressing how much he wants to live with us. SS was raised by his maternal grandparents for 4 years, calling them "mama" and "papa." But he knows these are his grandparents and not his parents.
You all sometimes take these questions way too personal and dive in way too technical. The question was acknowledge, not 'should Sks declare and honor their SMs as their mother on Mother's Day'.
Should DH instigate the acknowledgement? No. Should he discourage an acknowledgement? No.
My GS acknowledged his soon to be stepmom all on his own with the help of his BM. GS is under no delusion that Sm is his mom or even on equal status as his mom...he has a mother who tries hard and loves him very much...yet BM and GS both felt acknowledging SM on Mother's Day thanking her for the motherly type things she does for GS was in no way disrespectful towards his BM nor taking away who Gs's mom actually is.
She was not honored that day as his mother, but as a motherly type figure in his life that helps do the motherly type daily things for him when his own mom is not present. That being said, BM/GS also acknowledged me and my mother. We were all acknowledged as motherly type figures who are a part of loving and caring for a child.
Celebration of the day and what and how it means to a children and women can and does depend on the individual family. In no way shape or form do I think a sk should be pressured, forced or made to believe that anyone other than their active mother should be honored over the actual mother, but if a child desires to acknowledge a motherly type figure in his life and thanking her for those actions she provides said child should not be banned from it nor made to feel they have done anything wrong.
There's nothing wrong with Ima's SD jumping in the car and announcing 'Happy Mother's Day' to Ima. Ima is a kind, loving, giving woman who provides motherly type things to SD and Ima is a mother to kids in Sd's life and home.
In KKny's case, I highly doubt little KKny jumped out of bed and ran to the phone to call her dad's SO and shouted 'Happy Mother's Day'. I also doubt Ms TOW who is in no way showering motherly type actions on little KKny sat around all day hoping and wishing for the call or for the flowers to arrive whatever. Really, would a lady who is refered to as 'the gold digger' by little KKny expect even acknowledgement let alone to be honored?
Then we have the case of Mom2all, whose BM dumped her kids and is missing in action. Mom2 who has been and is every bit acting the mother for these kids. If they want to celebrate Mother's Day honoring Mom2 they should be allowed to and DH should help them with the celebration. If not for Mom2 these kids would not have a mother or any motherly type figure in their lives at all.
Mother's Day is what and how one choses to make it. My 2 cents.
The orgininal question was should dad "influence" the child. I think the answer is NO. Influence v. pressue --not certain I see the difference, only one is more polit.e The title question "facilitate" -- that is not the same. Facilitate is kid coming to dad and saying I want to buy SM a card, will you drive me to store. BIG DIFFERENCE.
FD~ What kkny said is, "I am not a SM, but if I heard my X was every encouraging my kid to show any appreciation of ANY SM on mothers day I would go threw the roof. Any work SM does is on behalf of DAD. HE should be parenting and HE should SM appreciation. If he cant or wont parent, kid belongs at moms. Kid did not ask for SM, dad did."
She was not saying if people were encouraging to treat SM as mom... she was saying "TO SHOW ANY APPRECIATION OF ANY SM ON MOTHERS DAY I WOULD GO THREW THE ROOF" and to say a kid showing appreciation to a SM on mothers day is cause for going through the roof by a BM... well, when it's the mother's insecurity or hatefulness that discourages a child from having a relationship with a stepmother that would benefit the child, that is selfish and potentially hurtful to the child.
As for titles, it is a personal choice and it should be the CHILD'S choice. Yes, small children CAN be influenced. They are not alienated from one parent because the other parent forces them to call the new stepparent mom or dad... they are alienated from the other parent by discouraging them from having a relationship with that parent, whether there is a 'replacement' parent in the picture or not. Ashley's SD would have a great relationship with her father if the mother encouraged her to love both dad & stepdad. It isn't that she has her call stepdad "dad" that causes the alienation... it's the attitude that "you have stepdad & you don't need to go see the sperm donor." (not saying that is what the father is, but that it is the attitude that the mother has toward the father that influences the child) Moving the child away so they cannot maintain that parent/child relationship is also part of alienation.
It is not simply having the child calling stepdad "dad". As I said before, my SD calls her mom's BF "dad" but it has had no adverse affect on her relationship with my DH... because my DH is secure in knowing that he is her father and she is not going to forget that and she treats him as her father. If he were to throw a fit because BM is having her call a BF dad... (which is ridiculous because not only is she not married to BF, she is still married to older sister's father).. but if DH threw up a fit over it, the result will be that SD will feel conflicted and it would cause turmoil for her. Why do that to a child? Her mom is living in a fantasy world, pretending to be the brady bunch but SD loves the BF... apparently when she is there for the weekend, he takes her to the movies or skate park with his kids while BM spends very little time with her. If DH were to do what BM has done... drive a wedge... then who would suffer? BF would still go take his kids but he might leave SD behind. It isn't going to cause BM to spend more time with her, just cause her to be excluded from doing things she enjoys while she is there. That is what BM's insecurity has done to SD in our home... BM has put a stop to girl scouts, baseball, karate, and dance... because she says I should not be doing 'mom' things with her daughter! (while she coaches her BF's kids in baseball for two years)
Kids know who their parents are, regardless of what title they use. They should not be 'forced' to call anyone by a certain title, but it should certainly not be discouraged if it is what the child is choosing to do and if the relationship is beneficial to the child. Now if BM were to tell SD that she doesn't have to do what daddy says or somehow try to encourage SD to stop treating dad as dad and at the same time, encourage her to treat BF as dad... that is alienation.
Ima, as you know, what I said was "but if I heard my X was every encouraging my kid "
Its not about the kid choosing, its about whether the parent should influence the choice. Why do you choose to ignore what I said?
I don't choose to ignore it, I disagree. There is nothing wrong with dad saying "hey, don't forget to wish your stepmom a happy mother's day for all she does for you!" just as there is nothing wrong with a mom telling the child, "don't forget to wish stepdad a happy father's day for he does for you!" assuming they do things for them.
If the stepparent has NO role in the child's life, then it would be ridiculous say anything... but if they have no role because the other parent forbids it, then it's not the same as having no role because the stepparent (or child) chooses for them to have no role.
For years, you have made it clear you disapprove of any contact your child has with her father's SO... so she has no contact with her. Congratulations. I am sure that has had no affect on your daughter's relationship with her father.
When I say "don't forget" to someone, the inference is that is something they intended to do. Its a reminder. As you said it ASSUMES the child would be doing these things. The original question was should dad "influence", which my dictionary says means to persuade, say, induce,manipulate. Different than facillitating. These are two entirely different situations. You can not assume every child wants to remember a stepparent on Mothers Day or Fathers Day. A stepparent can have a role, but it doesnt make them a mother. My DD loves my sister, but doesnt send her a card on mothers day. She is a beloved aunt. Where mom is invovled with child, I think this is the type of role a SM should aspire to.
FD - Thank you for bringing up my situation. It has been one of my "sticking" points. BM was "creating" a new family for SD, while destroying the old one. DH and I hadn't even been dating a full year when the sister was born.
SD has never lived with me and would never consider me HER mother, but she did (shockingly) send me a "Happy Mother's Day :)" text. I am a mother and she recognized that, even though I'm not HER mother. I thought that was pretty cool.
I have never even suggested to DS that he do something for DH for Father's Day, even though he has lived in the same house with him for over 2 years. DS actually suggested last year that he have a special day with DH since he is with his own dad for Fathers Day. I think he felt really bad for DH because SD wasn't here to spend time with him.
But BM has ALWAYS pushed SD to do something for Father's Day for SF (even to the detriment of DH's time with SD on Father's Day). It's all part of her creating that perfect family. So far....she's succeeded.
Ima - you said "Kids know who their parents are, regardless of what title they use." I would generally agree with that. But I do feel that BM making SD call SF "dad" was preparation and definitely contributed to the future alienation. DH and I thought there was no effect on his relationship with her just because she called him "dad", but in reality, there really was. It caused SD to see no difference between the two, when clearly there is and should be. It made it easier for them to pretend to have this perfect family where they live now because she isn't without her "dad". She has her "dad" and her mom and her sister.
Does that make sense?
My DS sends my sister (his beloved aunt) a Mother's Day card. So what?
"But BM has ALWAYS pushed SD to do something for Father's Day for SF (even to the detriment of DH's time with SD on Father's Day). It's all part of her creating that perfect family. So far....she's succeeded." - and that is terrible
As to sending your sister a card, if that is the kids choice, thats fine. Its when parents "influence" it is as you said crossing the line.
Ashley, I understand what you are saying, but having her call him dad in conjunction with moving away & pretending to be a family, including eliminating time with her true dad to spend time with her stepdad... I believe THOSE are the alienating tactics, not giving stepdad the title of dad. Kids have two sets of grandparents... they have the ability to love both but that relationship is going to be stronger or weaker depending on the amount of time spent & the type of interaction, etc. There are many factors that influence a relationship... and when one parent tries to create a new family at the same time as trying to eliminate the old one, that is a bigger influence than having her call stepdad "dad". Calling him dad is just a part of the overall alienation but your SD knows who her father is and as long as he does not give up in having a relationship with her, she may come around when she is adult and out of her mother's home.
So is it just SM's on mothers day you have issue with?? or is adult females in your daughters life?
I am guessing you never told your daughter to wish your mom, sisters, the lady next door, happy birthday or mothers day after all not her mother why should she care about another woman.
And I bet she ignored every female she crossed paths with sunday instead of being polite and saying "happy mothers day" because after all none of them are her mother ...
Yes adults should influence children to appreciate someone who is part of their life and even perfect strangers they may bump into while in the real world.
Ignorance is the only word that comes to mind at this point ... and yes I feel sorry for any family your daughter marries into because you have raised her to be a rude adult not putting anyones feelings above yours. So she will not aknowledge her mother in law or sisters in law in any way shape or form afterall they are not "her mother" only females she knows. You are the only person who matters to her and thats it end of story .... I did not expect your daughter to wish her dad's SO a happy mothers day ... but you said any SM ... so if one of her friends had a SM and was with her that day your own sister is a SM so guessing she ignores her too... and you found out later she wished her a happy mothers day you would go through the roof .... how ignorant is that statement.
My 2 kids gave me cards and oldest SD wished me a happy mothers day ... even though I am not her mom, she even got her GM a card and texted her BM ... and guess what my 2 gave their SM cards .... she is a mom not theirs but still a mom.
What is really sad is next month when all these kids on here who have SDads will be forced by BM's to celebrate fathers day and aknowledge them "for all they do" .... while not "influencing them" to aknowledge their BDads.
Wouldn't want to manipulate any child into doing what is right and proper rather raise rude and ignorant children after all poor things are children of divorce.
pseudo mom: My mom is a SM as well; my SF was a widower with young adult children when they met. Over the years, my mom has developed a good relationship with my SS's; they all now have kids who know my mom as Grandma. And do you know, my SS's all "influenced" their kids to sign the Mother's Day cards that they sent to her, and encourage them to call her Grandma! I mean, really! On top of that SS8 calls her Grandma too! (As he does his other step-grandmother on his BM's side.) All of these SM's getting attention from their step-grandchildren on Mother's Day is just appalling and I fear the consequences.
I wonder why I never seem to hear about the "real" grandmothers getting all bent out of shape about sharing the title of Grandma with "step" grandmothers?
Psuedo, my DD is extremely well mannered and always says thanks, etc. Her latest college BFs family loved her. But that doesnt mean DD doesnt understsand peoples places and roles. You can show appreciation without calling someone mom.
My sisters SS is very nice to her, but guess what, my sister never oversteps her role, and would never suggest to her DH that she be treated pari pursu with mom as relates to that role. My sister said she does not try to compete with the grandmas, and guess what, they like her.
Well, kkny... if your daughter ever gets married, there is a 50-60% chance the marriage could end and statistically, her children stand a good chance of being in a stepfamily situation, either as a stepmother herself or her children may someday have a stepmother. How sad that your feelings will probably influence how she views that.
Won't it be ironic, if she falls in love with someone that has children and doesn't feel the same way you do about the role of a woman in another woman's child's life? How sad if she does.
I didn't get a card, call, or acknowledgment from SD, nor did I expect one. I told my DD she had to call both Grandmas, and Great-grandma to wish them happy M's day. She then took it upon herself to call her aunt and wish her one too. I thought that was sweet.
Especially if the S-parent is a birth-parent themselves I think it is respectful to "facilitate" the celebration of their role in the lives of the children around them. I will be encouraging DD to celebrate Father's day with Sdad as well as helping her (reminding, helping to find a gift, driving to buy said gift, helping to wrap gift, mailing gift) for her birth-father. Also, instructing her to call her grandfathers.
I think it is a beautiful thing to be able to celebrate Mother's/Father's day with the mothers/fathers around you. My DD picked a bouquet (I was the one who suggested it) and took it to our neighbor. Does that mean DD thinks she is her mother?? (DD WISHES, LOL, as our neighbor has four kids and is the epitome of the perfect loving beautiful mother... DD tries to move in every chance she gets!)
I'm not threatened though, I encourage it. She has acted motherly toward my daughter, and I want to honor her commitment to motherhood. If my DD were 16 and didn't want to, or didn't volunteer I wouldn't force it. I would, however, enforce that on Fathers/Mothers day we celebrate/honor those around us. Which means, we have a breakfast and do something together that the honored person wants to do. It's respectful. Just like going to celebrate the birthday of the uncle who never took me anywhere, never paid me any attention, never acted like an uncle... you go, and you bring a card.
There is enough love here. We have enough to share. There is no need to compete for it. The more we give, the more we have.
I am dumber for reading that ... what the heck is
pari pursu??? think you meant pari passu ??? which again I had to look up you have used it a few times I thought maybe its important but I was wrong... noone said anything about being equal question was should dad influence the kids to acknowledge SM ... and you got all gung ho about your stance on if your daughter acknowledged another SM you would go through the roof ... you didn't say your ex's SO you said "any SM"
how wonderful you and your sister are. Someday when I grow up and get as smart as you and your sister I will know my place in this family.
BTW the grandparents like me better than their own grandchildren ... who have been taught by their mother to only honor her and no one else in their life because none of them matter only their mother. :)
So her rude children embarrass her and I get to say "not my kids don't blame me" :)
Ahhhh the blessing of not being their mother .
Actually, Ima divorce is less likely for women who are college grads and wait till in 20s for first marriage. Not zero obviously. If DD were to get divorced, I would help her with lawyer, and help her get custory and ROFR.
I would suggest any young woman read these boards if they were interested in a man with kids.
SS -- I think children should be influenced to be polite and civil. It is up to them who they love and respect. It should not be influenced by either their mom or dad.
I gotta ask. KKNY if DD marries and her DH purchases a card for his mother for Mother's Day ,then signs card "Love _____ and Little KKNY" sliping it in the mail (with Little KKNY aware of how card is being signed and sent), are you going to go through the roof?
Little KKNY knows this is not her MOTHER, but has chosen to join her name on card wishing another woman Happy Mother's Day because this woman is a mother (the mother of her husband) and someone Little KKNY thinks kindly of and wants to join in the good wishes...do you think she has stepped out of her 'place' or not abided by rules of role?
My DD has every desire to honor both her grandmas. That would not be dad "influencing" little kkny.
"SS -- I think children should be influenced to be polite and civil. It is up to them who they love and respect. It should not be influenced by either their mom or dad. "
So would you think making a special breakfast and buying/making a card for someone for a special event in their life indicates love/respect or polite/civil?
If my DD were at her aunt's home and it were Mother's Day I would be proud if my DD made her a card and wished her Happy Mother's day. I think that is the most respectful thing to do.
Civil: Politeness; an individual act or a manner of behaving which conforms to social conventions of propriety.
It is polite and socially expected that mothers will be acknowledged on Mother's day. I have had strangers wish me a Happy Mother's day. I graciously thanked them. I could have said "what, you think I'm your mother!!!???"
I think encouraging children to acknowledge important days in the lives of the people around them is polite and respectful. It really has nothing to do with me. Respect and love are earned.
But love/respect are nearly ALWAYS influenced by parents. We start by taking them to these old people's house from the time they are little and making the kids hug and kiss them. We leave them with these strangers, we make the children call them and say they love them before they could possibly know what love is. We call them Grandparents. LOL.
YOU CAN'T FIX STUPID!
"So would you think making a special breakfast and buying/making a card for someone for a special event in their life indicates love/respect or polite/civil?"
- Depends. I dont see Mothers Day as an event for SM. Her own kids, if any, can send her a card if they want. I dont expect a card for me on Fathers Day. I am not the dad. My widowed mother did the work of two parents, I never got her a fathers day card.
"It is polite and socially expected that mothers will be acknowledged on Mother's day" -- I disagree. It may be expected to recognize your own mother on mothers day, not others. If some people want to do it, doesnt make it an expectation.
LOL Ima. Happy Mother's Day!!! KKNY, do you wish people a Merry Christmas or Happy Holidays?
Here's a little history (notice the original intent behind the day was for women who are a) mothers or b) wives and therefore SM's would fall under the Wife Catergory):
The impetus for the holiday originated with Julia Ward Howe, known primarily as the poet who penned the words for "The Battle Hymn of the Republic."
In 1870, Howe became outraged by the ravages of the Civil and Franco-Prussian Wars. Believing that women had a particular sensitivity and understanding of the human costs of conflict, Julia called upon women everywhere to stand up for peaceful resolutions and negotiations rather than violence and bloodshed. In an effort to draw attention to the movement to end all wars, Howe issued a proclamation which said in part:
"Arise, then, women of this day! Arise all women who have hearts, whether our baptism be that of water or of tears!
"Say firmly: We will not have great questions decided by irrelevant agencies. Our husbands shall not come to us, reeking with carnage, for caresses and applause. Our sons shall not be taken from us to unlearn all that we have been able to teach them of charity, mercy and patienceÂ Â
"In the name of womanhood and of humanity, I earnestly ask that a general congress of women without limit of nationality may be appointed Â to promote the alliance of the different nationalities, the amicable settlement of international questions, the great and general interests of peace."
Although Howe did not live to see her dream of a MotherÂs Day for Peace fully realized, other women took on her cause such as Anna Jarvis, an Appalachian woman whose own mother was involved in reconciliation efforts between Confederate and Union neighbors.
In 1907, the first MotherÂs Day was celebrated in West Virginia and finally declared as an official national holiday by President Woodrow Wilson in 1914.
SS, yes how clever of Ima. I guess that is how she resolves disgreements by calling people stupid if they do not agree with her.
I am careful -- I usually know people's religion. But I think Happy Holiday is safe as January 1 is pretty non-sectiarian. I doublt when Howe started her dream of a mothers day, there were many divorces. Looking at Wilson's official proclamation, it is for mothers, not wives.
And in any event, we're not talking about people being free to say what they want, we are talking about whether DAD should "influence" child to acknowledge SM on mothers day. I dont think Dad should "influence" kid to do this.
Why is not being a wife not enough to celebrate? You have an anniversary.
When SMs cant get along with the kid's mom, one has to wonder what happened first - the mom being unreasonable or the SM overstepping. I would put trying to get Dad to encourage kids to give SM a mothers day card overstepping.
When SMs cant get along with the kid's mom, one has to wonder what happened first - the mom being unreasonable or the SM overstepping. I would put trying to get Dad to encourage kids to give SM a mothers day card overstepping. So if Dad encourages the kids to give SM a card, that means that SM is over-stepping?
Those damn uppity SMs; first they're all (every one of them) out stealing other womens' husbands and now they're overstepping baby snatchers too! Hey, I've got an idea; since the only time it's OK for a SM to be appreciated by her Skids at all is if the BM is dead, maybe all of us SMs should start killing off the BMs that feel this way? I'm thinking a kind of Strangers On A Train thing.... Who's with me?! :)
Ima was making a reference to a popular comedian. You chose to take it personal.
The point I was making and you, I believe, are side-stepping, is that Mother's Day is hardly the Hallmark Holiday people make it out to be these days, all flowers and lace and "mommified". If you want to trace it to England, it originated as a church holiday honoring Mary. It wasn't for years that it was acceptable to celebrate all mothers.
"why is not being a wife not enough to celebrate"
I don't understand the question. The original Mother's day was a day of PEACE. That was the main component. Banding together to keep our males (sons and husbands) safe.
Either celebrate it as originally intended or don't be pedantic about how others celebrate.
I wasn't saying people that disagree with me are stupid, kkny. Just stating my belief that YOU CAN'T FIX STUPID! It's my opinion that a stupid person may not know they are stupid, maybe they are oblivious, so they don't know to change so they aren't so stupid. In this case, I am the stupid one for wasting my time, thinking you're mind could be opened. It's too funny if you thought I was calling you stupid.
SS -- really because when Woodrow Wilson signed the Proclamation about mothers it said nothing about wives. So I think you are really stretching. A SM is not the mother. She can be a mother to other kids. If kid wants to send her a card, fine. For SM to get dad to "influence" kids to send a card, well its certainly a way to start more drama in the relationship. I guess some people thrive on that.
when people say "Happy Mothers Day" to me I don't necessarily assume that they think I am their mother. Colleagues? my DD's girlfriend? my SIL? my father? Really, they say it because they acknowledge I AM THEIR MOM? they acknowledged that i am a mother of someone else.
So if SKs say "happy mothers day" it is very nice and polite way to acknowledge that you are a mother-of your children. (of course not talking about steps who replaced the parent)
But I don't think people here are talking about Sks acknowledging stepmoms as someone else's moms...
I think it should be dealt with on a case by case basis. In KK's case, sure, her DH really shouldn't be encouraging DD to give a card. DD is grown. SM isn't SM (yet or maybe never) and has not participated in the raising of the child.
So, grown child with SM/WBSM who did not help raise: NO
In my DD's case, if she were with her dad and his girlfriend and I were in the same town I would not encourage her to make a card. WBSM is not a Mom. But if WBSM were a bio-mom of her own accord I would encourage DD to make her a card. WBSM would then be "eligible" for a card due to her "mother status". DD is old enough that if she wanted to make WBSM a card even though WBSM isn't a mother or her mother, I wouldn't care. But if dad encouraged it under those terms, I'd be a little peeved.
I encourage my DD to do father's day for my DH because 1. he is in every way her father figure and 2. he is a father to his DD, so father's day IS "his" day. I think that is respectful.
Kind of like making a card for a veteran next door for veteran's day even if he isn't "my" veteran.
well that's exactly what kkny was saying, not appropriate for a dad to facilitate honoring SM as a parent when she is not. OK to acknowledge that SM is a parent to her own children, as Ok to acknowledge an aunt or grandma as somebody's mothers. Somewhat strange to encourage a child to acknowledge a person on a Mothers Day if she is no one's mother (unless again completely replaced a parent).
imamommy, i think it is ridiculous that SD calls mom's BF 'dad", he is not her dad and not even a stepdad, I bet you mom "influenced" her.
I dont think that "completely replaced" is the appropriate cut off line for acknowledgeing or dad facilitating acknowledgeing a sm on mothers day
Silver, assuming your neighbor is a US vet and you are a US citizen, he is YOUR veteran. And I would expect him to be honored on veterans day. Now if he were Al Queda vet, I would not expect him to be honored.
Momof4, kid can do whatever kid want. Dad can facillitate (as in heah dad will you give me a ride to the mall so I can get a card). But that's it. I think it is wrong for dad to influence, wrong for SM to hint to dad it owuld be nice (either to dad or kid). And same for mom to do for stepdad. Kids should be civil.
Some of the SMs here are big on expecting or hoping or demanding (whatever) that the kids mom respect boundaries. Well I think SMs should respect boundaries and understand that Mothers day is for moms (and unless mom is MIA, in jail, strung out etc, then SM should be spending Mothers day with her own kids, or have a day off, but in any event not expect nor demand Mothers day recognition from the stepkids)
"Now if he were Al Queda vet, I would not expect him to be honored."
hahaha you made me laugh, haha Al Queda veteran's day.
I actually thought the same thing, how is it he is not "your" veteran, if he served "your" country? He certainly is "your" veteran.
'But love/respect are nearly ALWAYS influenced by parents. We start by taking them to these old people's house from the time they are little and making the kids hug and kiss them. We leave them with these strangers, we make the children call them and say they love them before they could possibly know what love is. We call them Grandparents. LOL'
????I certainly never "made" DD to kiss and hug grandparents and say she loves them. They were/are very close to her. It grows naturally from naturally developing relationship that comes from healthy interaction and communication between grandparent and a child. It's not just happening from mom and dad making kids do and say things.
what you described is influencing behavior patterns: give a hug, now give a kiss, now say you love grandpa, now write a card, now call stepmom "mommy", now give her a kiss, now say happy Mothers day etc. It is not influencing LOVE it is influencing certain behavior. love and respect is not that. Respect is earned and love comes from the heart.
personally I teach my children to respect their elders, respect their peers, respect their teachers.... etc etc
and it is certainly not wrong for a dad to say to his child (given a caring sm who is an active part of a childs life) what are we going to do for sm for mother's day or what do you want to do for sm for mothers day or I made plans for us to do x for sm for mothers day.
he should certainly encourage the same for mom and not just ignore mom exists because they are divorced but there is nothing wrong with acknowledgeing a sm that is motherly to the kids to be acknowledged for all the motherly things she does.
Pseudo:"Ahhhh the blessing of not being their mother ."
Ha ha that is funny. Good for you Pseudo :-)
"nothing wrong with acknowledgeing a sm that is motherly to the kids to be acknowledged for all the motherly things she does."
what do you mean by that? what's motherly things? Like nurturing? My dad and my uncle do a lot of motherly things towards people, so did my grandpa, they are loved and respected but they are not the mothers. I do nice things for my niece, i am not her mother. I do nurturing things to plenty of people, i am not their mother.
It would be very appropriate for a father to ask "what are you doing for your mother for mother's day?".
My neighbor does nurturing motherly things as well for SS - but not every day. If your relatives are with your kids six out of seven days a week; getting them ready for school, helping with homework, talking about their day, doing their laundry, feeding them, bathing them, and tucking them into bed (and I don't mean just one or two of the above but all of them, day after day, on a long term basis) I'd be interested to hear about it. I don't mean to imply that DH doesn't do more than his share of stuff around the house or parent; but no one who has their SK more than 50% of the time is going to be dividing up the things that need to be done that way (Well, I'll cook dinner for myself and you, but you have to cook for the kid.... and I'm picking his clothes out of the laundry before I wash... and even though I'm off work at 3:00 PM I want you to hire a chauffeur to drive them to soccer practice and after school care.)
As for the "veteran" thing; there are countries around the world filled with graves of US veterans; I'm thinking of France in particular. I'm really glad that they (mostly) don't subscribe to the "not my veteran, no reason to keep his grave in order" theory. Rather they will honor the US veterans for what they did for them.
I believe the distinction of veterans I made was not US v. France, but US v. Al Queda. There's a differnce.
I think that someone who has kid 6/7 days is more in the category of mom MIA. BUT, then there is a slippery slope from 6/7 to 51/49 then to any SM. In any event, that some SMs work less than full time is a division of household labor/funds that works for you and your DH.
I think one reason my sister has had no drama with SS mom is that my sister doesnt expect appreciation from kid, viewed getting kid through school as its own reward (self supporting SS now, Dada) and never overstepped her role, either as SM, or SGM.
where as I would acknowledge those in my life whomever they are that are motherly (or fatherly for that matter)and caring and support me.... particularly those that are there throughout my life if not every single day in person, but there for me every day. And, as I said for a caring supportive sm, there is absolutely nothing wrong with saying we want to show appreciation for all she does... Her name is after all step MOTHER and what better day than MOTHER's day to say "thanks, you know you really didnt need to stay up until 2 oclock in the morning making me a costume for multi cultural day and you really didnt need to sign me up for sports, take me to every practice, and take me to a million stores to find the equipment I needed... and so on and so on.
And there is nothing wrong with dad (particularly when kiddos are young) helping the kids out with or making the plans for a nice moms day for the sm.
I still think the key is to make sure that in the process mom is not getting ignored or pushed to the side.
A stepMOTHER is as much as mother as an Ex-wife is a wife (except to her own kids/husbands respectively, if any). Once you lump ALL stepmothers as mothers, your logic falls flat.
I like FDs idea, ask kid what are you doing for mothers day.
that makes no sense... and I didnt lump all step mothers together I specifically said caring supportive step mothers... you know the kind that we see on this forum every day.
You said " Her name is after all step MOTHER and what better day than MOTHER's day to say "thanks," clearly stating that the mother in Stepmother should mean something. It doesnt.
I'm lost on the whole Al-Quaeda reference.
"As for the "veteran" thing; there are countries around the world filled with graves of US veterans; I'm thinking of France in particular. I'm really glad that they (mostly) don't subscribe to the "not my veteran, no reason to keep his grave in order" theory. Rather they will honor the US veterans for what they did for them."
Thank you Mattie. That was more what I was going for. I just didn't word it very well.
When my DD was small and even now I influence who she will like. This is not done overtly, but in context. I am selective about who I allow around my daughter and she develops relationships with them. She wanted to make a present for a friend of mine who is a mother (not related to us) but my dd wanted to celebrate Mother's day. I think most kids want to "celebrate" whichever holiday comes down the pike and want to have as many people in the "celebration" as possible.
The thing with the grandparents: No, I don't "force" my dd to hug and kiss anyone. But I influence her to form a relationship with them. This is done through sending her off to stay with them, having her call them, they send gifts, she sends thank yous.
My DD called her grandma and wished her a happy mother's day. But Grandma is not my DD's mother. I told DD, please call grandma and wish her a happy mother's day. And dd was happy to. I don't see anything wrong with this. If the kid says "no, I don't want to, she's not my mom" WELL. That is where the "forcing" would come into play. I personally would not force a kid into doing something like that.
BUT, I force my DD to write thank yous. I tell her we are going to do XYZ for her teacher or a neighbor and she has to help. I took a tupperware of food and gave it to her yesterday and told her, now go give this to neighbors, watched her walk across the street and then left her there. They watched her walk back.
IF she had a Smom, and if that SM did any sort of care-taking for DD I would tell her she needed to acknowledge that. I think it's only polite. Caregivers get so little acknowledgment, especially SMs. They are expected to be the unacknowledged, unpaid servant who is LUCKY to be included in the family at all and better know their place and never overstep. Meanwhile, usually, in my experience they are the glue holding the family together at Dad's house (let's face it, most dads can't keep it all together on their own, especially with young kids).
The parent should not force a relationship where there is none and the child is not comfortable. But the parent's role is to facilitate the relationships of the child until they are old enough. To facilitate means to help forward the progress of a person, to make easier.
And I think the Sparent can be extremely valuable even if they don't completely replace the parent. Kids need all the support they can get, IMO. Let's hear it for caring, concerned adults helping our children ~ the ones who many believe have NO OBLIGATION to help.
I am extremely thankful for a number of people in my DDs life. But that doesnt make them mothers.
If you beleive this "Meanwhile, usually, in my experience they are the glue holding the family together at Dad's house (let's face it, most dads can't keep it all together on their own, especially with young kids)", then dad should get miminal visitation. Visitation is for parent/child relationship, not stepparent.
In any event, OP was asking should dad INFLUENCE child in this. If child wants, fine. Even if mom wants. But for dad or SM to INFLUENCE child to appreciate SM on mothers day is asking for drama in many cases.
Oh, puuuuuullllleeeeeeeaaaaaaassseeee, KKNY! You acting as though you don't "influence" your DD!
Let's get down to brass tacks here...it is our job as parents to influence our kids! They don't have the experiences to know what they should and shouldn't eat, drink, say, do, whatever. So we influence them with the things WE prefer to eat, drink, say, do, whatever.
If DS didn't like X's GF and I thought it was irrational (kids don't always know the whole story), I would set him straight on it, whether I like her or not. I guess you consider that influencing, as well.
Yes, of course parents influence kids, but what I am saying is that if SM or Dad influence kids in any way to treat SM as mom, it is likely to increase drama. Some people look for drama in their lives. I prefer TV and movies.
"...if SM or Dad influence kids in any way to treat SM as mom..."
In that case, when SD is throwing up, I most certainly should not be the one holding her head out of the toilet, or helping her bathe (since she is too shy at 10 to have dad see her naked and PREFERS me). That is not something a friend does. I don't do that for ANYONE other than my DD. Nor should I help her pick out clothes, make a snack, dress her wounds, give advice, help learn sports, deflect dad's irritation that Mom is turning her into a spoiled little brat and she's incredibly hard to be around and she reminds him of X so it's double hard for him and I don't know X so I can treat the completely idiotic things that X is puppeteering through SD's mouth at face value and therefore calmly whereas he is likely to say something to damage the relationship further (like when she says she will only shop at _____ store, or that she doesn't understand why we don't buy a brand-new car every year ((LOL! like MOM who is going through her second bankruptcy!!)) or that, wow, DH's aunt really does want to see me?? I thought she didn't like me, that's what MOM said...) And DH has a hard time not saying something snippy back. I have that degree of separation, so am a good buffer.
But maybe I should let BM send her little daggers of animosity for DH right through SD, and let DH struggle not to say anything and leave that giant hole in the conversation while DH counts to 10, 50, 100, 1000.... because that's THEIR relationship, right? Why should I be a calming influence? I'm not supposed to influence!
I shouldn't let her sleep on my side of the bed when she's scared at night. And DH shouldn't let her. Because that would be treating me as a parental figure and G*d forbid she should think of me as anyone but the woman her dad married.
Oh, and she and DD should not think of themselves as sisters since they didn't come from the same sperm and the same womb. That would just be weird.
Whew! My workload just got a lot lighter!!! Can't imagine what this does for you ladies who actually live in the house of the father and his child. (not your house. their house. because they are the family. not you. got it???)
I've had grandparents, aunts, nannies, babysitters, teachers, etc help with all that. I've said if mom is MIA, it is different. If dad cant do all this, my child is always welcome at my house. We dont need a SM. But even if a SM does this, it doesnt make her a mom.
Nope. Sure doesn't. Moms are born when they give birth. Adopted parents are born when they sign legal documents. Stepparents are born when they marry parents.
Wait. I'm looking at this logically!!! LOL.
So, KKNY, you think my DH should force his DD to let him help her bathe when she gets suddenly ill at our house and has vomit all over her... or he should call BM to fly over here?
Or I should help but shouldn't think of it as doing motherly things. It would be more of a "babysitter or nanny" status? And when SD says thank you for being my Smom I should tell her that I'm not her mom and any hired help would do the same?
I think the difference in the roles you are referring to:
is that the first two are related and the second three are paid. Stepparents are neither related nor paid.
"Nor should I help her pick out clothes, make a snack, dress her wounds, give advice, help learn sports, deflect dad's irritation that Mom is turning her into a spoiled little brat and she's incredibly hard to be around and she reminds him of X so it's double hard for him and I don't know X so I can treat the completely idiotic things that X is puppeteering through SD's mouth at face value and therefore calmly whereas he is likely to say something to damage the relationship further (like when she says she will only shop at _____ store, or that she doesn't understand why we don't buy a brand-new car every year ((LOL! like MOM who is going through her second bankruptcy!!)) or that, wow, DH's aunt really does want to see me?? I thought she didn't like me, that's what MOM said...) And DH has a hard time not saying something snippy back."
ROFL! Okay now that was the longest sentence ever (and kinda funny and kinda sad)! I actually forgot to breathe while reading it! LOL!
kkny: In any event, that some SMs work less than full time is a division of household labor/funds that works for you and your DH. I don't know where you got the impression that I work less than full time; I work more than full time. I am currently self-employed as an application developer. (BTW, I make more than DH as well but that's not really relevant.) The reason that I am with SS8 after school is because I can be. In our opinion, it is in the best interests of SS to not have to go to after school care but rather get to come home to his own house where someone who loves him is waiting, in the best interests of DH and his ex to not have to pay for after school care- in fact, the only person who comes out behind is me, because I am the one who is then working very early in the morning or late into the evening.
It is not that I am complaining about it because it was not something forced upon me, but something that DH and I decided was best for all of us, and no one else was in a position to be able to do so. But that is the kind of thing that I think most of us are talking about; something Dad can't do, BM can't (or won't) do, and for SM to not do is not going to be best for the kids.
Silversword, I like your idea and I'm thinking about going to the spa, maybe followed by a few glasses of wine and then an evening at the opera since I'm going to have all this free time now! Want to join me?
"Stepparents are neither related nor paid."
EXACTLY the friggin point! If SC and SM have a good relationship, DH should be even more emphatic that children thank SM since she's not related or receiving payment for caring for the children of her husband.
I don't have to do sh*t for SD...not even if it benefits DH. I could care less if DH is "happy" with me for doing something for SD. Generally, he doesn't even say anything when I do something for her because he expects it from me (another topic for another day). But I have done things for her and I will continue because I genuinely care for her. So will DS. Even though WE tend to get forgotten.
Mattie, I would love to join you!
It's the same at my house. I work more than full time. But DH (the SM in this situation, lol) is with DD in the mornings because our schedules work better that way. I could put her in early morning care but DH (and BD) and I agree that it's in everyone's best interest (except for.... wait for it... DH's...) to have her at home instead. He has to leave later, which means he has more traffic both directions and is at work later.
Try to find a babysitter/nanny/teacher who would do that without expecting a big bonus!! LOL! And what does he get? Well, the gifts of a true parent who has to get a child ready in the mornings. Backtalk, attitude, slow kid who makes him late, non-listening, grouchiness, etc.
And, when DD goes to BD's house he is working a lot of the time. She is with WBSM or Grandparents more than 50% of the time. Sure, I could say she'd be better off with me if he can't be there 100% of the time but that wouldn't be the best for their relationship. The time she does spend with her BD is valuable too.
I would regard SM as doing stuff on behalf of her DH. If he isnt thanking her, thats a different problem.
" If SC and SM have a good relationship, DH should be even more emphatic that children thank SM since she's not related or receiving payment for caring for the children of her husband."
Yes. Thanked as a PERSON, a HUMAN, who is going out of their way to care for you. I don't know one person who has ever gotten confused as to who their mom was. Not one.
When they re-define the Step-PARENT to be "Person who does things for you like anyone else who is paid or related to you by blood Day" I'll reconsider my opinion that stepparents should be thanked on mothers/fathers day.
We could call it PWDTFYLAEWIPORTYBB Day for short.
"I would regard SM as doing stuff on behalf of her DH. If he isnt thanking her, thats a different problem."
When I make food for DH's grandparents they thank me. And I'm not their granddaughter. DH doesn't need to thank me. I have my own relationship with them, independent of him. They're smart enough to know he didn't have anything to do with it. And I do it because I love them.
So Silver's ex and DH's ex just get to take it for granted that we two step-parents are re-arranging our schedules for the benefit of their children? (Because they're not our kids, nope, no way, we're not parents!) Oh, and the fact that they are not paying money for child care or for our "babysitting" does not deserve a thanks from the BP's either? We're just some kind of sub-humans that exist to serve others?!
Damn, here I didn't realize that I had turned into a house elf from Harry Potter.
Never mind the revenue loss that the Sparents are experiencing as unpaid babysitters/chauffeurs. I wonder if food stains on my car seats could be a tax-write off since they aren't my kids?
When my DD says "my Dad" to her friends, should I correct her if she's talking about DH? Funny thing, I will say "your dad...blah blah blah" and she says "which dad?" It always throws me...um... X. Bio dad. Of course. Otherwise I would have called him Mr. Silver. Ironically, it's X who started telling DD that DH is her Sdad. She came to me, DH is my Sdad? LOL. who told you that? Dad. Oh. Well, yes, he is. Too funny.
My DH has a "mom". Occasionally he will say "my mom" and someone will get confused. I thought your mom died. Oh, he'll say... yes, this is my OTHER mom. He's so lucky he has two :)
Ha, since I am self-employed and actually have an office here (for which I pay exorbitant rent, apparently, since this is not my home in which I live, but rather DH's and SS's, the real family); anyway, every time this unrelated short person comes running into my office, accidentally knocking things off my desk, getting fingerprints on my screen, or worst of all, spilling chocolate milk on my carpet, I'm gonna write it off as a business expense! I wonder if there's a way that I can get some kind of credit for claiming I'm running a work-study program if I let him watch me work?
Now my real question is, if it's OK for SM's to be Mom if BM is dead, then what happens if BM is dead, then SM dies? And then there's a new SM? I mean technically she's allowed to be Mom, but then how are the first moms referred to? "My late mothers" just doesn't sound right. And does SM who was Mom because BM is dead still get to be Mom after she dies, or is the "Mom" title only available to living SM's? It's just all so confusing! :)
"...every time this unrelated short person comes running into my office, accidentally knocking things off my desk, getting fingerprints on my screen, or worst of all, spilling chocolate milk on my carpet..."
ROTFLMBO!!! This unrelated short person...!!!
Which brings up another question. When everyone goes to heaven (well, that's assuming the wicked stepmother makes it to heaven) is the original nuclear family reunited? Is there a special orphanage in heaven for displaced SM's? Perhaps they get to be the family maid?
"We could call it PWDTFYLAEWIPORTYBB Day for short."
LMAO! Try reading that outloud. LOL! I think all my coworkers just looked at me weird!
KKNY - "I would regard SM as doing stuff on behalf of her DH. If he isnt thanking her, thats a different problem."
No...I do stuff for SD that DH would never do so as to make our place more hospitable for her. Like buying pads and tampons to have here in case she starts her period while she's here (like she ever comes, anyway, but I did), washing her sheets and pillows and vacuuming her room to get rid of the dust since no one has been in her room for months, making sure she has any toiletries she might need while here, letting her know what our plans are so she can pack appropriately (and bring the right undergarmets for the dress she was wearing at the wedding), etc. DH doesn't have to thank me for that stuff.
I even keep up with SD's schedule (what I can find on the school's website cuz they won't tell us a damn thing) and let DH know so he has something to text her about. I'm not doing it on behalf of him. I'm doing it to make a tough situation better.
Now, I would agree with you if I was doing something on behalf of DH or BM. Like when BM volunteered to bring a turkey to a banquet and then asked DH to ask me to do it. BM should thank me...not DH or SD. Or when I go and get DH a birthday, Christmas, or Fathers Day gift from SD (which I won't do anymore unless SHE asks me to), SD should thank me for that. Or if DH asks me to get a birthday gift for SD since he has no idea what to get her then DH should thank me.
The way I see it is kinda like grandparents. My mom's mom didn't get mad because I spent a week with my dad's mom. And I called them both "Grandma".
If you think that is fine that DH doesnt have to thank you for all that, its fine.
You had (have) two grandmothers. That is a major major difference between SM/Mom and two grandmas.
Now what does any of that have to do with Mothers Day? Seriously, I can't imagine as a Mother listing off things for DD that I do for her and exclaiming this is why I get to be celebrated and why she must honor me. That kind of entitlement is exactly why *some* SM's aren't perceived as a parental figure to the stepkids. They are just too much work and emotional exhaustion to deal with. The last thing a kid from a divorced family needs to deal with, if a grown woman can't understand that concept then it's kinda unlikely she's going to blend well into a stepfamily and again, her responsibility.
I really can't believe the concept is so hard, let the kid chose. There's nothing wrong with Dad mentioning Mothers Day, but to push, prod or exclaim this loudly over a stepmothers *right* to mothers day, well...it's just odd.
As far as Mom passing, BTDT. Stepmom doesn't get a special reward for being the last one standing.
At the end of the day, it's not about Mom or Stepmom. It's the individual relationships and common sense. If SM is TOW, yeah she probably shouldn't be expecting a card. If SM married when they were adults, probably not. If SM doesn't have a cordial and respectful relationship with the kid/adult, yeah...she probably shouldn't be so worried about a card. If Mom is a drunk, doesn't see the kids, she probably shouldn't be worried about a card. If Mom passed away, SM/Dad can find it in themselves to be sensitive towards the childrens loss.
"I would regard SM as doing stuff on behalf of her DH. If he isnt thanking her, thats a different problem"
wrong wrong and more wrong.
The things I do for DH are things like making sure there is tea in the fridge when he comes home because I know that's what he likes... watching every sports show known to man so I can catch him up on what is going on when he works late and cant watch it himself. fixing the brakes on the car instead of waiting around for his one day off for him to do it.
The things I do for my children (skids included) are for them and thier benefit only. Infact, if you really want to get nit picky some of the things I do are more for mom then DH... like driving every morning and afternoon half way to meet her so she doesnt have to drive the whole distance to take them to school...like putting off studying for my finals because mom called and cant pick up the kids at the last minute because she has to work.
But still I see that as doing for my kids. They need to go to a good school to get a good education so if I have to drive every morning to make that happen then so be it.
If they forgot until the last minute that they need a costume for multi cultural day and I stay up all night making one...that is for them. (and acutally DH wanted me to just forget it and come to bed)
when I put them into sports and carted them back and forth to practice because they wanted to play oh so bad... that was for them. It would have been easier to just say no it certainly didnt benefit Dh or mom in any way...only the kids.
And yes, as a mother or a step mother I expect a thank you. It's polite. And I teach my children to be polite. Just like when I say please take out the trash (an everyday chore) and thank you afterwards... it's manners.
"I can't imagine as a Mother listing off things for DD that I do for her and exclaiming this is why I get to be celebrated and why she must honor me."
No one said this is what SM's are expecting.
The irony is that my DD thanked me for all I do for her and for being "the best mom I've ever had" LOL. The kids get it. Mother's day is a day for appreciating all that mom's do. Like, cooking and cleaning and bringing fresh flowers in the house. Which is why most mothers, on mother's day, ask for a meal they don't have to cook, a clean house, and some flowers!!
Otherwise, if not thanking for what parents do on mother/father day, it would be a "thank you for your sperm/egg day". That's all that's left. Either it's a "thanks for all you do" or it's a "thank you for my life" or it's "congratulations for getting knocked-up".
Nivea, I agree that the kids should choose and no child should be forced to give a card to a SM. But facilitating that (indicating that it would be appreciated by SM and would be a nice gesture) is not in bad taste, IMO.
"...fixing the brakes on the car instead of waiting around for his one day off for him to do it."
Mom, no kidding. In our house I do the car repairs (by that I mean driving the car to get fixed, lol). DH's schedule is not as flexible as mine. So many people in my family say "that's DH's job, it's his car, and he should be maintaining yours too!" Yes, I wish he did the car repairs. But it just makes more sense for me to do it. And he thanks me. I guess my point is those same people don't say "it's Silver's job to take your SD to school, it's her kid!!" when they find out he is driving DD to school every day. I see that Sparents get the short end of the stick.
"And yes, as a mother or a step mother I expect a thank you. It's polite. And I teach my children to be polite. Just like when I say please take out the trash (an everyday chore) and thank you afterwards... it's manners."
I agree. I think the problem some are having is the "thank you" being requested on Mother's day, or as it will hereby be referred to: BMOD or "Birth-Mom Only Day". Acknowledging a SM on BMOD is what is causing the dissension.
KK said a while back, let the kid chose.
There's a difference in acknowledging appreciation and paying homage. There'a also a difference in coercion vs free will. My FMIL considers Mothers Day her day and her day only, us other twits are not acknowledged. Neither are our mothers or *stepmothers* (shock and awe!) She considers Mother Day a major holiday and it's dedicated only to her. And she wonders why people don't want to spend it with her, she is emotionally exhausting and demanding emotion from others that they do not feel. Luckily as adults we're free to say no, as children they can't.
There's a difference in asking do you want to? vs demanding homage based on titles. Even behaving nicely and humanely towards others doesn't get a gratitude for life award. It's called being human.
And fwiw, I think they same exact way towards bio mothers who demand acknowledgement/praise/worship on Mothers Day. Insecure and needy, the last thing a stepkid needs influencing his or her life.
I actually fix the brakes and do a lot of other car repairs. It is just sooo much cheaper. My Dh's boss laughed when I showed up at his work because DH's car broke down (hole in the gas tank) to fix it. DH's boss was like you better not let that one go!
I realize that that is where the dissension is falling but I was more addressing the whole Dh should be thanking you nonsense.
As I said before there is nothing wrong with dad helping the kids along with a mothers day for sm. If it causes drama that dad helped kids celebrate mother's day with sm, then I think it reflects a lot more on moms insecurities then anything else. And, (should I be misunderstood) no one should force anyone to do anything (within reason). I can understand if dad only helped kids do something for sm and then did nothing to help kids do something for mom... that I can see causing drama (unless of course mom is married and her husband helps the kids do something for mom) and hurt feelings.
I think there is a gray area between Dad helping kids v. Dad influencing kids. But even a dog knows the difference between getting kicked and someone tripping over him. If dad influences kids to treat SM at Mothers Day, its wrong and may cause drama, and I dont care if he does the same for mom and stepmom. SM.is.not.mom. This has nothing to do with insecurity. Dad can encourage kid to celebrate SMs Bday, etc etc, but she is not the mom.
Otherwise, if not thanking for what parents do on mother/father day, it would be a "thank you for your sperm/egg day". That's all that's left. Either it's a "thanks for all you do" or it's a "thank you for my life" or it's "congratulations for getting knocked-up". I don't think it's right to acknowledge BPs on the "thanks for having sex and giving me life" day unless they didn't actually enjoy the sex - if they did, then they were just doing it (so to speak) for themselves and the kids were just a by-product. Or maybe the BP's should just send cards back and forth to each other on that day? "Thanks for the mediocre time we had twelve years ago."
Also, I think SMs are in a segregated part of heaven, right next to the Catholics who had originally been in hell for eating meat on non-Lent Fridays but got paroled to their separate and unequal part of heaven after Vatican II.
The whole "SM's should be thanked by their DH and taken for granted by everyone else" thing is so silly that I can't respond seriously. :)
Whats so silly as turning around thanking SM, but not treating her as a mom, to be taken for granted.
Ha, good point! Maybe that should be the criteria; if SM is taken for granted like a mom, then she can be appreciated on Mother's Day; if relationship with SM is distant or formal enough that she gets thanked for each specific thing, then she's "just" a SM. :)
I see nothing wrong in thanking SM for what she does, people should thank each other, but I do not understand demanding special acknowledgment. I do not think SM need to be taken for granted or be unappreciated, but it does not mean they are mothers. I appreciated my grandfather and thanked him often, still he was not my mother.
And I think it is a bad idea to do nice things in exchange for some elevated status. I am surprised how concerned are SMs about things they do for the kids. I am never concerned about what I did for DD, i am the mom. If SMs would truly considered themselves "Mom"s they would not care to list things they do for the kids.
wow!!! "Meanwhile, usually, in my experience they are the glue holding the family together at Dad's house (let's face it, most dads can't keep it all together on their own, especially with young kids)",
who said that? this is just awful, i don't understand this logic, portraying men like some helpless immature boys, why even have children with men like that? sounds like an image straight from a stupid sitcom.
"Now my real question is, if it's OK for SM's to be Mom if BM is dead"
I don't think that mother had to be replaced because she died. Plenty of posters here were concerned with SMs trying to replace a passed away mother, it caused resentment and anger in SKs. Bad idea.
"Mom"s they would not care to list things they do for the kids."
If my kids walked away to another room when I came into the room they are in, if they held up their hand to the side of their face during dinner so they didn't have to look at me or didn't want me to look at them, if they ignored me when we are in the car going somewhere like I am not there.. or I am just the 'driver', and if they were disrespectful, disobedient, and constantly tried to get me in trouble by making up lies.....
well, wait a minute. I raised my kids. I taught my kids to be respectful and polite. I taught my kids to say THANK YOU. I would NOT tolerate my kids to treat me like that and if they did it to spite me, yes.. I would probably have a list of things I WON'T do for them... like take them to the mall or shopping, or to a movie, or let them go to a friend's house.. and damn straight I would remind them that I am putting a roof over their head, I am feeding them, I am clothing them, I take them for medical care, and I do all that because I love them and they are MY children... but that does not mean I have to do the extra's if they treat me like that.
The difference is that when it's MY kids... they were raised by ME. They know what my expectations are. There is a bond. They (our own kids) don't usually have someone (like a mother or grandmother)'supporting' them in treating me like crap.
SD lives with me. I once asked SD if she wants me to treat her like she's one of my kids. She said yes. She had done something wrong, so I scolded & lectured her like I would my own kids. The next thing I know, BM is calling up DH to complain. That's why some step kids cannot be treated the same... and I say some because my exBF's kids lived with me and I treated them as I did my own and that was never a problem. Their mother was not there to start crap at every turn.
And I would also point out that SD goes to her mom's.. calls her mom's BF dad.. they pretend to be a brady bunch 'family'... and what happens at BM's house, stays at BM's house. First, SD does not talk about it... either she has no desire to share or she's been told to keep quiet. Second, we don't drill her or ask. Not that we don't care, but it's her mom's house & her mom can do what she wants in her house. DH can't do anything about it if she does something he disapproves of anyways. It would be nicer for SD if BM would give her daughter the attention she needs and not worry about what we are doing in our house... but some mother's can't put their child's best interests first.
the funny thing is that everything that I "listed" for my skids included my dd. I expect and treat my own dd the same way I treat my kiddos... those that see a difference are obviously not in the position of loving kids that are not biologically their's and have no concept of devoting themselves to someone because they chose to..not because they were born to them.
My stepkids and bio daughter are the most important things in my life and I would sacrifice myself for any of them ...
My DH has on several occasions reminded the skids of what I do for them and what I dont have to do for them.. for example when bio mom was under the influence of now ex bf and she talked nothing but bad about me and to me and made sly comments when I was sitting right next to her... Dh asked and said what has L ever done to you that made you feel bad? what has L done to make you feel good? what has L gone out of her way to do that neither me or mom were able to do for you?
that is most certainly dad influencing... but dad was questioning the brainwash that was going on and making the kids think for themselves.
FD: wow!!! "Meanwhile, usually, in my experience they are the glue holding the family together at Dad's house (let's face it, most dads can't keep it all together on their own, especially with young kids)",
I said that. I didn't say men are helpless. Usually they are doing their best to be providers. And the day-to-day parenting (meals, laundry, organizing the schedule, driving to functions, helping with school projects, etc) falls to the woman, the SM.
Just like it does in a Nuclear Family.
Are there even any sitcoms with Stepmothers?
If Dad cant or wont parent, then he shouldnt be given substantial parenting time -- unless mom is incompetent or MIA. That simple.
"If Dad cant or wont parent, then he shouldnt be given substantial parenting time -- unless mom is incompetent or MIA. That simple."
I agree. How do you feel about my situation with my DD? She leaves for the summer. Dad works. WBSM and Grandparents watch her while he's at work. Is this considered "not or won't parenting"? In your opinion should she not visit him if he is unable to be the only adult in charge?
I would like to know first, is this a long distance situation and if so, who moved. Not LD, she should visit weekened or evenings. LD, depends on who moved. In any event, quality of care must be looked at.
Long Distance. Yes. I moved. For excellent reasons. And got primary custody even though I was taking DD away from her home state, my home state, and her entire environment. Which should tell you that I have both excellent references and an extremely valid reason for moving. One that her Bio-Dad fought tooth and nail, but now agrees I did the right thing.
Of course quality of care would need to be looked at :) That goes without saying. You were saying that if dad "can't or won't" care for kids then kids shouldn't be with him. To me, this means that if kid is primarily with smom or other alternative-caregiver, that child would be better off with BM than being in Dad's environment at all.
Quality of care is excellent. She is in the house she lived in for the first 4 years of her life, in a very safe location with extremely diligent caregivers. But "parenting" is not done primarily by Dad.
Bio-Dad works weekends and evenings :)
I think if CP moves, no matter how good the reason, CP has to be willing to make more sacrifices.
Dont understand Dad works weekends and evenings? Is he never home? Then what is point of visit?
KKNY said "But even a dog knows the difference between getting kicked and someone tripping over him."
Ha ha ha! I FREAKIN LOVE THIS! Sounds like something Dr. Phil would say. I am SO going to use this in a conversation today!
This is not about sacrificing KKNY. I have no problem letting her go there. She has a good time, she is cared for. Honestly, and this may make me sound like a bad mother, but I really enjoy my summers. DH and I are child-free for some of the time and we get to go on dates, sleep in on weekends and do "adult-stuff" that we ordinarily don't get to do. My afternoons are not filled with DD's activities and I get "me-time". OF COURSE I MISS HER, but I enjoy her a lot more when she gets back than I would if I never got a break.
You have posted several times that if child is not with Dad, and is being cared for by SM, that Mom should have child with her.
I'm sorry if you can't understand that some professions work different shifts and different days than others and that working those shifts does not mean he is never home, it just means he is home at different times than those with a 9-5 job.
KKNY - if you were in a position where you didn't see your kid but a couple to maybe 4 times a year, you would understand. It's worth the daycare or camp money or kiddo spending time with GPs just to get that couple of hours to spend with them every evening.
And weekends just aren't long enough. Especially when you add in travel time.
Your logic is BMs logic, therefore, SD never comes.
If DH wants to be able to visit SD in her town or go to his son's wedding, he can't be taking off a bunch of days. So yeah, SD will spend time with friends she has here or me or whatever while DH is working.
KKNY said "But even a dog knows the difference between getting kicked and someone tripping over him."
Ha ha ha! I FREAKIN LOVE THIS! Sounds like something Dr. Phil would say. I am SO going to use this in a conversation today!
I cant take credit, its an old law school line.
"It's worth the daycare or camp money or kiddo spending time with GPs just to get that couple of hours to spend with them every evening."
Or, in my X's case, spending the mornings and early afternoons and every Tuesday and Wednesday :) Which actually works out better because most people have weekends off and can dedicate time to her, like her aunt, so DD actually has four days a week where people are off, and X is off in the mornings and early afternoons, so she is really with other people only from around 2-bedtime (then dad picks her up after wok and drives her the couple miles home)
"And the day-to-day parenting (meals, laundry, organizing the schedule, driving to functions, helping with school projects, etc) falls to the woman, the SM."
It is not the case with most families where women work professional jobs just as much as men, day-to-day parenting falls equally on both parents, taking turns. In many modern families women are as much provdiers as men, if not more. What you described is a very old fashioned traditional set up 1800s style, those times passed. Not too many professionals run their life this way. Naive views again.
"It is not the case with most families where women work professional jobs just as much as men, day-to-day parenting falls equally on both parents, taking turns. In many modern families women are as much provdiers as men, if not more. What you described is a very old fashioned traditional set up 1800s style, those times passed. Not too many professionals run their life this way. Naive views again. "
I've worked in the corporate world for 13 years; my mother for 25. I don't know of a single family where the father and mother 'take turns.' That's a utopian view, in my opinion, and equally naive.
so in your family women are doing day-to-day family things while men are just providing? it could be the case in some traditionally run families where men are sole providers.
but every family in my circles is running it as a team, we do not have women running day-to-day family life and men only providing. we do take turns doing things and are equal in our contributions to the family life.
plenty of men are better cooks, and in many families people take turns doing laundry or each does their own, and so on.
heck my grandpa was born in 1908 yet he was the one who cooked and helped the kids with homework and he was a professional.
I am surprised to hear that some of you here run families very old fashioned way where women do all the cooking, laundry, schedules. it is so not the case in my circles!!! just so absolutely not.
But i do accept that traditional role divisions still take place in some circles.
"Usually they are doing their best to be providers. And the day-to-day parenting (meals, laundry, organizing the schedule, driving to functions, helping with school projects, etc) falls to the woman, the SM.
Just like it does in a Nuclear Family. "
Whose family? certainly not mine or any of my family members or friends or colleagues.
I agree. Both FDH and I work fulltime and we share household duties. I cook more because I like it, he works in the garden more. I vacuum, he cleans toilet and bathroom. We both do washing and other stuff.
Oh my. Naive again, huh. You've really got a bone stuck in your craw with me don't you FD?
I work a professional job 40+ hours a week.
But, from what I can see on this board my viewpoint is more inclusive of reality. MOST women on this board, from what I can tell, both work outside the home and chauffeur the kids, are responsible for the gift buying/party planning and day-to-day routines. Not because Dad is a slacker or mom is a housewife, but because that's how it works for them. In my X's case, WBSM shoulders at least 1/2 of the "parenting" because of my X's schedule. I don't know how they divvy up housework.
There have been countless studies and articles on the feminist movement and how it has increased the workload for women. Like it or not, women are still the primary caregiver for children. That is not saying there aren't any stay-at-home dads or involved dads, or single dads, or dads who do everything while lazy mom sits on the couch and eats doughnuts.
"Whose family? certainly not mine or any of my family members or friends or colleagues."
LMAO. Did you morph with KKNY??? If it doesn't happen in your circle it doesn't happen at all?
SS, then if dad isnt parenting, dad shouldnt get parenting time. That simple. Unless both mom and dad cant be there.
Dad is parenting KK. He's just not 100% parenting because he has to work.
What is the difference between DD being at summer camp (after all, I have to work too), or with Grandparents, or with WBSM. If she's happy, and she gets to spend a couple months seeing her dad every day.
This whole thread is just so insane to me.
My daughter gave me a beautiful Mother's Day card (handmade) that made me cry---and SHE AND MY MOM gave me a new digital camera. I am not my mother's mother (haha) but my mom was thoughtful enough to give me a gift because I am a MOTHER. My DH also helped DD with a new charm for my necklace.
I have personally never had any acknowledgement from SS on Mother's Day, but that is because he is always with BM on Mother's Day weekend. If he were here, I am sure that DH would have BOTH KIDS present me with my cards and gift.
DD and I gave my grandmother (her great-grandmother) a picture in a nice frame and a card. She is not OUR mother but she is a mother. And I wished every mom I saw that day a Happy Mother's Day. It is a day for recognizing and appreciating all the things---big and little---a mom OR stepmom does for the kids and family.
What is the big deal if dad says "hey, don't forget to wish your SM a Happy Mother's Day?" I agree with whoever said it should not be to the detriment of the mom, and a child should never be forced to celebrate with SM INSTEAD of mom....but believe it or not, kids ARE capable of appreciating and loving more than one person.
This whole thing is just so silly to me.
"And the day-to-day parenting (meals, laundry, organizing the schedule, driving to functions, helping with school projects, etc) falls to the woman, the SM"
In my family and in my circles, this is certainly true. Even though many, many of my female friends/family members work outside the home, they are still the ones organizing playdates, doing laundry, picking up from school or after-care, communicating with teachers, etc.
When I drive through the carpool line at DD's school or at SS's school, 98% of the cars are being driven by moms.
Times have changed but I certainly agree with the fact that moms still take on (and this may be by choice) most of the parenting and household-running duties.
I work part-time and I do ALL the school pickups, and most of the cooking, all of the laundry, most of the help with homework, driving to soccer practice, swim team, etc. DH works about 50 hrs a week and handles all the *typical* male stuff at home----yardwork, repairs, power washing the front porch, etc.
It's divvied up pretty typically IMO.
My mom has three Masters degrees, my dad has a PhD, and this is pretty much how our family growing up was managed. My mom taught highschool English until I was about 2 and then she became a SAHM. My grandma has a Bachelors degree in Biology, my grandpa has his Masters, and this again is pretty much how THEIR family was managed when my mom and uncle were children. My grandma worked in the research department at Washington University until she became pregnant with my mom and then she was a SAHM; of course, this was back in the 1950s but still. IMO it has nothing to do with education or social circles, it's just people following those biological roles. I know plenty of moms at my DD's school who are exremely successful women, in executive positions, etc. And they STILL are the parents you see volunteering as room moms or working the bake sale. I see very few dads doing these things.
"IMO it has nothing to do with education or social circles, it's just people following those biological roles."
Agreed. And sometimes men are more comfortable doing the cooking (one of the girls in my girl scout troop has a dad who is a CEO and he loves to bake and cook, so we always get delicious homemade treats from him) and cleaning and childcare, but most families, IMO, don't divvy up things equally. The end result is equal, but not the jobs individually. And SM's take on the "mother/female" duties often.
In my life:
DD's ballet class: I've never seen a dad
Girl scouts: We have one dad who drops off/picks up/volunteers. The other 10 are all moms. And all except one work full time (she is out of work, not career SAHM).
Soccer: All moms, with the dads showing up for games. My DH coached one season but does not go to ballet lessons. He does do music lessons with DD though.
Golf: We both hate the golf lessons but I'm usually the one there. Along with the rest of the women/moms.
Self-defense: One dad consistently takes his boys. He is SAHD during the day and works nights. The rest are moms. Ratio of 1/30 dads to moms.
PTA? All moms. Field trips? Moms. Kids being walked home from school with DD and I? Moms. Grocery store? Moms.
Love, my SM called me and sent me a Mother's day package with a lovely card and book to share with DD. I admit, I was a little shocked and pleased. My "REAL" mom didn't call, didn't write, didn't acknowledge. Why should she? She's not MY mom!!! LOL.
"PTA? All moms. Field trips? Moms. Kids being walked home from school with DD and I? Moms. Grocery store? Moms."
Ditto ditto ditto.
The time I see the MOST dads is during morning drop-off at school and I think that's because dads will often drop the kids off at school on the way to work. I always see dads at soccer games, swim meets, etc---all weekend activities. But the day in, day out grind of practices and homework and grocery store runs is almost always mom.
Wow. My DH is really looking good right now! Maybe part of the difference with him is that he already had primary custody for years before I met him, so if his kids wanted to eat, have clean clothes, go to scouts, etc. it was DH who had to do it. And I'd be damned if I was going to get married and wait on someone hand and foot unless I stayed home and was a housewife, which I have no interest in being. My DH cooks, cleans, grocery shops and does almost all the laundry. Mostly we just take turns based on who is busier and who has free time at the moment but he certainly does his fair share!
Love, my DH drops DD off at school :)
Don't get me wrong Mattie. My DH works very hard around the house. We just don't split every thing 50/50. He fixes toilets, computers, appliances. He waters the gardens. He does yard work. He trims trees and plants.
BUT, when his DD comes over I do more of the everyday, routine maintenance for her, as well as my DD who lives with us. DH does take care of DD while I go to the gym, or takes her out so I can have me-time (without me asking). I feel we even things out pretty fairly. We both work and we work around each other so that we can get everything done. His schedule is more flexible and he can work at home more often so he is the one to stay home when we need delivery signatures, etc. It all works out, neither of us feel we are being taken advantage of.
My point was not that the typical man is going to work and coming home while the typical woman is doing all the "woman jobs". What I perhaps did not say eloquently enough is that I feel, IMO, that women still do more of the child-stuff, and when a man remarries those duties become the SM's. Many SM's do not resent this and are happy to do it, but it is a very conflicting, fraught with emotional landmines position.
Much like being a diplomat. In a war zone. With very few supplies.
I agree there is potential for conflict. I still think whatever childcare related stuff SM does, she does on behalf of dad. At least in my situation. If dad doesnt want to take care of DD, he can send her back to me anytime.
I think it is perfectly fine for a stepparent or a grandparent to watch kids when needed, of course if parents are never available it is wrong but on occasion is perfectly fine and I think a parent who delegates should always say thank you. I always appreciated people who watched DD on my behalf.
When it becomes a norm, then it is a problem.
You are SAHM, of course you do household chores. I would not expect a man to work and then also do everything else, what is a woman to do then?
i was talking about families where both parents work professional jobs the same number of hours. totally different story. it is very sad if there are families where men do not do parenting or family stuff because they are more inclined to be providers, very sad.
People talk about PTA, all of the PTA meetings at DD school took place during the day and of course only moms attended, due to being SHAMs or working only part time, i never attended one PTA meeting.
My father as well as my grandfather as well as my brother as DD's dad attended/attend children's events/conferences just the same as women. If men are not willing to participate then why even having children? Might as well have kids by yourself using a donor.
"And they STILL are the parents you see volunteering as room moms or working the bake sale. I see very few dads doing these things."
Because these women don't work.
I was not talking about stay-at-home moms, of course they do all that while men work. I was talking about working women, you brought examples of your grandma and mom, they were stay-at-home moms, nothing to do with their education. I was raised by working parents and they were raised by working grandparents, that's why they had to take turns and everyone contributes. DD was raised by working parents. And that's how everyone I know was raised. Simply cannot pile it all on the mother in such situation, plus plenty of men actually love parenting and wouldn't want a woman to take over.
What you described does exist, and I am not saying some people don't stick to traditional role division.
oops, i mentioned lamom by mistake, meant lovehadley, sorry
I've been following this thread closely and deliberately not commenting. How did my name get in to the subject?
Thanks for the correction. I'm passing on this discussion.