Gaylord Focker, will you be my son-in-law?
I’m pretty sure that most of you have seen the movie “Meet the Parents” starring Robert Deniro. Of course it takes him the majority of the movie to accept that his daughter loves Gaylord Focker.
Such is usually the case with step and biomoms. Sometimes it takes moms a while to acknowledge the fact that stepmoms actually love their children and mean them no harm.
And that ‘s okay. Give the moms space to accept reality in their own timing.
Stepmoms, for what it’s worth, you should make every effort to interact civilly with your stepchild(ren)’s mother. If possible as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men.
Don’t get me wrong, I KNOW that some people are utterly unreasonable, don’t want to get along, and are mentally unstable to boot. But that has nothing to do with you and who you are! You are a stepmom with values and principles and a good heart. Use every opportunity you can to be the bigger person. In the end, the small things just don’t matter. If it is not a life or death situation you will be better off letting it go. Working together works–trite but true.
Take it from one who knows, it feels so good to do the right thing even when you feel that the other person doesn’t deserve it. I struggled a lot with this thought when it came to dealing with Eliza. I was most successful when I remembered that we didn’t deserve to have Jesus die for us, yet he did without hesitation. Therefore take what a person “deserves” out of the equation.
I had “proposed” to Eliza in the early stages of our burgeoning correspondence. I even shared articles with her from the CoMama’s so she wouldn’t think I was crazy for even dreaming of such a partnership. I wanted to let her know that I was not trying to take her place. I also wanted her to know that I wished to work with her for the sake of our boys. I can’t say that she accepted because I feel that if she had, the boys would be with me now.
Even though I was rejected, I have no regrets for wanting what I felt was best for the boys. It’s a small consolation in the face of all that has happened, yet it’s one less burden that I currently have to bear.
I think the words you speak, and the advice you offer is great, because it is heartfelt.
Great advice as always!
I was thinking about this very thing just this morning, Morocco. This is such a fantastic post, your writing is always so insightful and fulfilling.
My husband’s ex has made it clear that she didn’t have the child with me, so she shouldn’t have to have anything to do with me. The fact of the matter is that she willingly signed those divorce papers, and her former husband is now married to me. Although she did not have the child with me, I am now married to the father of her child and I am as much of part of that childs life as any other family member, by blood or marriage.
I know a lot of ex-partners don’t want to accept, nor deal with the new spouse, but we’re here, we’re not going anywhere, get over it already and act like an adult!
And whether she cares or not, I’m not going to stop being nice because that’s just who I am!!!! 😀
Eliza would feel threatened with you because she KNOWS you can do what you say. She is not able to do that herself, she is not stupid either. She knows the boys would be best with you, she also knows she may suffer the risk, of being replaced with you. I don’t think she can bear that. She is selfish that she does not want them to have “another” Mom, she wants to be the only Mom here. She knows with her relatives there is no chance of that happening. So she is willing to sacrifice their happiness to keep her Mom to herself. That is what I see here. Also with their Father gone, I think she feels that they may develop a closer relationship with you. That simply, is not going to happen in her eyes. Dynamics change in relationships, when people come into or leave the current arrangement.
I still marvel at the way you handled yourself with Eliza. There are not alot of StepMom’s, that could have done that. I know I would not have been able to. That is more then I can stretch.
Yes, you absolutely did the right thing for everyone. You stay true to your word, regardless of circumstances.
I really appreciate your insight! I agree with your keen assessment. I know that my time with Eliza is over, but I want to use my stepmom experience to help others.
Today I was reading through some of her letters and cards that she sent and they almost made me cry. In the positive ones she was writing what a wonderful stepmom I was to take such good “care” of “our sons.” Reading through them made me realize that she was simply manipulating my emotions the entire time. If only what she had written was sincere. It is hurtful to me because I am such a bleeding heart. And I suppose I believed that she would treat me in the same manner as an act of common courtesy OR appreciation for rearing her boys.
But I will never regret extending anyone compassion. However, I think I will be more cautious of wearing my heart on my sleeve in the future. You live and you learn, eh?
Yes, kill her with kindness–even if she never responds in turn. We have to never grow wary of doing good.
So very true, all of it. And how wonderful that you cared for the boys the way you did and worked with Eliza for their benefit under very difficult circumstances. She, however, will have a very heavy burden on her shoulders…. what she has done to the boys for her own selfish reasons. On the surface she can pretend otherwise, but she will be haunted, I’m sure.
Would you remind me how long you have helped parent the boys? I know you don’t want to expect this but they may seek you out despite Eliza. So glad to see you posting again 🙂
It was a little over two years and I’ve been in their lives for eight. I would love for them to seek me, but I know that will be years from now. Ethan is 13 and Evan will be 10 in three weeks so they are too young to make any moves alone.
I have so much respect and awe of your strength. I have to say that your words ring true. I can see that writing really helps you. I know that I don’t have to tell you to keep doing it. Please keep doing it. I haven’t been through what you’ve been through, but your words still give me strength to endure whatever trial I am going through. Even, if you didn’t intend to, you are the source of strength to many. Continue to be who you are. I will continue to pray for you and your family, as well as continuing to grow from your strength and wise words.
Wow! I am amazed at your strength and sensitivity. Thank you for sharing yourself with us.