Becoming a step-parent isn’t for everyone and I for one, wasn’t about to take on this responsibility.
I don’t have kids of my own yet and it’s something I’d like in future. He had kids already and was hinting that they were enough. Staying would have meant relinquishing my dream of having biological children and I couldn’t deny the world offspring with my superior genetics. There were other reasons as to why I could never be a stepmom and I’ve listed some of them below.
I suck at dealing with conflict
Imagine co-parenting with someone that isn’t happy that their ex moved on with you. Everything would be a battle. You’d need to keep them in the loop about everything and seek their permission for any significant family activities such as travel or traditional rituals (no I won’t chop up your child, it’s just an example.) I wouldn’t know how to handle the conflict. I know you’re thinking that its my man’s place to deal with his ex but who will look after the child day in, day out? The mother of the home. So of course our paths will cross. It’s inevitable.
It’s too much pressure
The role of being a step parent comes with a stench of stigma you can’t wash off. Everything you do is scrutinised with a magnifying glass. If I discipline the stepchild, its subject to investigation. Since fairytales, the stepmother has been marked with a scarlet letter and from Shakespeare the child that isn’t from that home has been problematic. Its a recipe for disaster. I’d constantly be second guessing myself. Overbearing and possibly overloving the child so that no one will accuse me of being an evil stepmother.
Deep down the child will resent me
These little creatures only know what they see. If the father leaves their mom that’s all they know. The reasons why are usually kept from them cause they won’t understand or in my society, the child isn’t worth consulting about the parents’ split. All they know is, “my parents aren’t together and you replaced my mom.” They also experience guilt of feeling like they have to choose sides and mom will always win.
This post is ironic because I don’t use my biological father’s surname so technically I shouldn’t be one to talk.
But hear me out.
The surname that I use is from the father that raised me, the only father I had. He was the most amazing man. He was very loving and he went out of his way to raise me like my siblings. There was no difference between them and I when we were growing up. We were equal equal not Animal Farm equal but the equal that you use in a math equation equal.
And for him that was okay because he had all that love to give to my mom and to me. I barely have enough love to give to myself. If we’re being honest. Would I be mean and hostile to the child? No, especially if the child was there before me. If the child comes during my reign, that’s a different issue between me and my spouse. Still, no child will be harmed during this parenting.
Also, let’s face facts, it’s the stepmoms that are accused of being evil. Even though we know men can also be diabolic. And when it’s the man its worse if he is the head of the house and the breadwinner. That’s when we see women choosing their husbands over her kids or sending the kids away to live with relatives because her child isn’t welcome in the home.
If being a stepparent isn’t for you, it’s nothing to be ashamed of. Let the person that you are with know where you stand instead of leading them on, wasting their time and resenting them in the future. If you’re like me without the emotional capacity for it, then that’s fine. Just be honest about it. Don’t go through life pretending to be something that you are clearly not.