Well, I was going to post a recipe today – my insomnia has been bad again this week, I’m very tired and the recipe I was going to post is very easy (it’s coming tomorrow). But I’ve had the thoughts for this post rolling around in my head ever since this post last week and I need to get it off my chest.
Being a step-parent is not easy; there are ALL sorts of challenges and obstacles and frustrations that come with the job. I can certainly understand the desire to not want to do it – trust me, I really, really can – but if you’ve married a man with children from a former marriage or relationship, you’ve got to put on your big girl panties and face facts. The ex-wife or girlfriend and the kids are a part of his life, and always will be (or always should be) and it’s something that you’ve got to not only learn to live with, but deal with in a mature, responsible manner.
After my little rant last week about Ex-husband and Current Wife and the little games that are apparently being played, I started thinking about how very fortunate I am in another respect. I’m not talking about Beloved; I believe I’ve made it more than clear that he is not only a marvelous father to his own daughters, but a great step-father to my kids. No, I’m talking about The Young One’s step-mother.
Good Ex, as he’ll be referred to henceforth, met and married a lovely woman from Trinidad a few years ago, and they have a son who is almost 3. Now Good Ex and I have had our problems and moments of frustration over the years, but we’ve always done our best to be the best parents we can be to The Young One. In our efforts to continue to co-parent despite our separation, we’ve discovered that it’s not all that difficult to be civil to each other – we’ve even managed to remain fairly good friends.
Good Step-Mom has been just that – a good step-mom. In fact, I thinks it’s safe to say she’s been an exemplary step-parent. Oh, she’s made a mistake or two, but what step-parent hasn’t? I can say, though, that when I’ve felt that there has been an issue I have had no problems talking to Good Ex about it, and any problems there have been were resolved quickly and with as little angst and drama as possible.
Mostly because she seems to understand what her role in The Young One’s life is, and she makes an effort to fill that role without any undue resentment or emotional baggage. She seems to understand that Good Ex and I are the parents, and she lets us parent. She is there for The Young One when he needs her without being interfering or badmouthing me. She welcomes my son into her home and is kind and loving towards him while he’s there, but never tries to assume my role.
While Good Step-Mom and I will probably never be the best of friends, she does not seem to be threatened by my friendship with Good Ex and I appreciate that a great deal. I wonder how many second wives understand how very, very important it is for the parents of their step-children to remain on as good of terms as possible, and how important it is that they do what they can to facilitate that relationship - or at the very least, not to hinder it. Good Step-Mom is mature enough to understand I am no threat to her marriage – we’re no longer together for a reason.
At any rate, I am grateful to Good Step-Mom and am glad she is part of my son’s life. She is doing a great job of being exactly the kind of step-parent I myself try to be. I can only hope that I’m as successful at it.