Being a Step Parent puts you in a role of being a comparison. Children now have someone else to compare their birth parent to. We brace ourselves daily for the comments of who is the better cook, better boo boo kisser, and better homework helper. It is these small comments that are like paper cuts. Little annoyances by themselves, but as they stack up, they make you very sore.
Sometimes it may make us over compensate. We try even harder to be “better” often to only fail making us even more miserable. How in the world do we get out of this cycle? Running around in a hamster wheel trying to be the best at everything does not get you much further than where you started.
The key to positive Step Parenting is simply about being the best YOU you can be. Be happy – even celebrate that Mom is better at something than you, tell them that you are glad that she has that attribute and can be that person in their lives. It makes that child feel part of something good. I know it’s hard, but the more positive reinforcement of the other parent we can dish out, the more comfortable your Step Child will grow with you. The other thing I am always telling my boys – even when I am on the good side of the comparison – “It’s not a competition.”
You do need to celebrate, even if it is just with your supportive spouse sometimes, that you are AWESOME at certain things too. By the way – you ARE an awesome person just by stepping up to the plate and offering to be a parent and role model to a child that needs to be surrounded by as much love as possible. Keep doing an amazing job…
~ Amy Elizabeth