A stepmom, especially a full custody stepmom, has all the normal worries every mother has running through her head – Am I being too strict? Am I being to lenient? How are their grades? Sports or music lessons? We all have the same worries about future situations too – puberty, the sex talk, first date . . . You get the idea. Stepmothers, however, have to worry about another set of future situations. Generally these are situations deal with biomom vs. stepmom and being a blended family. Being the kind of person I am – a planner – I tend to visualize these future scenarios quite readily and try to anticipate my response.
Recently, I have discovered that I am subconsciously preparing myself to hear the phrase”You’re not my mom” one of these days. It will probably be in response to my direction to say or do something. What will I say? How will I respond? The traditional “I may not be but this is my house” tact? I know they’re only 4 and 5 right now, but still, those are the kinds of worries that rattle around in my brain! This recent post is the result of an interesting situation came up the other day that in turn spiked my tendency to visualize future scenarios that may never happen.
Upon returning from one of their infrequent (hopefully, weekly) visits with Biomom, the White Knight and I were treated to a very matter a fact statement from our youngest about how I was there ‘stepmom.’ We both sat stunned for a second as we had never used that term in our household before. They use a very cute, mixed up version of my name each with their own variation. The ‘th’ in my name was very hard for them to pronounce when we were first getting to know each other and we’ve haven’t corrected their versions of my name since. I never anticipated having to address the issue of what they should call me until such a time as there was a third (or forth) child in our household. Apparently, Buddy had innocently referred to ME as his ‘mom’ while visiting HER prompting a talk from her on her part with the kids about the difference between the two of us. It was a really cool feeling to know Buddy thinks of me as his mom with the title and everything. It was unfortunate the kids had to hear about the complexities of relationships from her. You never truly know the effect words have on young minds where ideas are just forming about the larger issues of life. My husband and I have to constantly be on guard about what the kids pick up from their visits with their Biomom. She makes promises, voices big plans and ideas that rarely happen. How do you explain to a child that mom’s new boyfriend’s daughter is not their sister?