I started this blog when I married my husband because he has two daughters. At that time, everything was exciting and it felt very much like we were a packet of Sea Monkeys. The universe added water and POOF! I suddenly had a husband and two teenage kids. I wanted to blog, respectfully, about the ups and downs of Step Family Life, and create a space for other step mothers to either feel some camaraderie or help give them hope by sharing witty, positive anecdotes. Sadly, I have very few positive stories to relay from the last two years. The truth is, if the kids and their other biological parent aren't open to having a new person in their life, you can't win; even if you have the best of intentions, even if you go way outside your comfort zone to be who you think they must need you to be, and seek counsel from professionals you can't win. Bitter? No. Educated and realistic about the actual dynamics of a step family? Yes. I had imagined being a strong, positive female role model and friend to the kids (nearly adults) but that is not the reality. I imagined this friendship and respect while also filling our home with my own biological and adopted children as the girls moved on into adulthood. That too, became quite a bit more complicated than expected.
So, I abandoned this blog.
Let's go back to yesterday. Yesterday, as I was being questioned and probed and told to get a million labs scheduled, I realized that this blog is still relevant. Maybe it should be called Just Add Moolah Family instead. When I got married, I married a man with kids and I also received brothers and sisters in law, parents, aunts, uncles, grandparents- POOF! Our endeavors to have our own children through IVF and hopefully also adoption are very intentional. Getting pregnant won't be an accident, adopting can't be an accident, and so I imagine myself in a lab with beakers and safety goggles, adding just the right elements, we'll just call them water for the sake of simplicity and theme, and POOF! -hopefully we will end up with our own little family.
If you or someone you know is a step mother, or more accurately in some cases just the dad's wife, please check out Step Mom Magazine. It saved my sanity and is full of helpful advice, validation, and even positive real life stories about how different families make it work in their own way, not the way that those without any experience in a step family expect you to make it work.