Being a custodial step-mom
Hi! I'm new to this site and found everyone's posts very inspiring so I thought I would write about my life with my step children.
I have two step children: ss 7yr. and sd 9yr. My dh had gotten temporary custody of them two years ago after the bm disappeared with them for 20 months. Recently we went to mediation and it became permanent; the children would live with us.
My dh and I have a 20month daughter, who is my pride and joy. She's still young and loves her brother and sister very much. My dh seems very happy that his family is finally together. (He actually wants one more!)
My problem is that I'm not happy. I find it very difficult to love my stepchildren like my own. I understand that it takes time, but I have been in their lives since they were 2 and 3yrs old. I feel that I am being mom to them (they call me mom), but without the rewards of the title. Their bm lives in another state, hasn't seen them in over 2 years, calls about once every two weeks, never has paid child support; in all words, a lousy mom. She said she was coming down for Halloween, then backed out. She should see them for Christmas, but who knows?
I feel very sorry for them, even though they can't even comprehend what their bm has put them through. My ss and sd have been in counseling for over two years; some times it doesn't seem to be working!
I have the most problems with my sd (9). She is very stubborn, lazy, and disrespectful to adults. I discipline her (because I am the one raising her), and she hates my guts. There hsa been a few nights when I'm happy that they (ss & sd) have gone to bed! I try to have some one-on- one time with each of them, but some times I don't even have the energy for that. I love the time I have with my d (20 months) and can't imagine being separated.
My dh works nights, so most of the child rearing falls on me. And because of his guilt about how the children have been treated, he tends to not discipline. He says I'm too hard on them, but I feel that if I don't teach them; how will they learn? No one else is doing it?
I feel that every step of the way, every thing I do is being watched and critized by bm and dh. Who knows? It could be used against me in court later.
I didn't feel this strongly when the custody issue was up in the air, but now that it's permanent...I almost feel like I'm suffocating. My dh had been wonderful when I say that I need some "me time". He will watch the kids and I spend time with my girlfriends and go shopping by myself.
Has anyone else experienced this? Am I going crazy? My close friend says that it's okay to feel this way, but I don't think it should be going on this long. Any suggestion on how to feel better?!
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