Is blood thicker than water? Can step families make it? Or are they all destined to be like the tale of Cinderella with her evil stepmother? I grew up in a family with a stepdad. Part of my children are being raised by a stepdad. I also knew a few friends when I was a kid that had stepparents. So how do stepfamilies stand?
My stepdad has been around longer than I can remember. I was only 18 months old when my mom and he started dating. When I was 3 years old, my baby sister was burned pretty badly. Of course she was babied more, but I was a little girl and noticed dad treated me different. My mom made some good rules that didn’t pamper my sister so much and my relationship with my stepdad grew.
When I was 11 along came another sister. Mom went right back to work and I helped my stepdad care for the baby. It was a bumpy ride for me to see him as my dad. He did treat me a little different but he really did love me. Blood is thicker than water……..
We now have a great relationship. I can talk with him about real life stuff and he will listen. Dare I say, he is a friend too! I still call him dad, as I always have. He is grandpa to my children. Now let’s look at my friends experience growing up with a stepmom.
I only have a few instances where I ran into my friend’s mom. I was never really comfortable spending the night there and I understood why when I was about 17. My friend “Molly” lost her mom when she was an infant. Her dad quickly married so Molly would have a mom. I believe that her dad truly loved the mom and was lost when she passed on. He became an alcoholic. The stepmom ended up having two of her own children, both boys.
She treated Molly much like the story of Cinderella. One time she got beat real bad because we wouldn’t let her little brother play with a project we were working on. He was too young to even do it. They didn’t beat her in front of me. They took her to the basement, but I could hear. I never went back after that time until we were teens.
Molly ran away once when we were younger teens. She stayed with us for a few days. She soon got scared and left to go back home. She never complained, never told anyone what was going on. When we were around 16, I left home, never returning. She left for a few days too. We talked a lot over those days. I found out only a few things that had happened to her and it does invade my sleep sometimes. It’s too terrible to mention here!!
Molly ended up leaving for good a few months later. She went and lived with an Aunt from her real mom’s side. I heard from her 10 years ago and she was happily married and a mom. We lost contact and haven’t spoken since. I think of Molly often and the life she lived. I only saw a small piece of that life and sit her crying as I type this.
So onto my husband as a stepdad, we have been together for 13 years. He has always been a stepdad to my kids. He is a great man, don’t get me wrong. Being a stepparent is a rocky road. It was hard in the beginning. The kids didn’t like me not being with their dad and therefore didn’t like anyone I was with. They wanted to call him dad and he refused. I was hurt until he explained that they had a dad and he would never try to replace him. He was only an addition to their lives.
My son took the longest to come around (he was just 5 when stepdad came into the picture). He was around 14 when he finally gave in. My husband is a good stepdad. He treats the kids fairly and tries his best to never favor his own children.
I believe that blood is thicker than water. But I also believe that given enough time that water can become very similar to blood. It seems to take on the same qualities in our hearts. I know that my husband and my stepdad love their stepchildren with all their hearts. I understand that my dad will always love his own children a little more than me, but that is ok because I know that he loves me and truly that is all that is important. I love each one of my children differently. They are all unique and I love them all for different reasons. Doesn’t mean I love one more or less than the other though!
So what is your opinion on stepfamilies? Any experiences?