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Stepmom Central Stepmom Central

Is there a double standard?

Posted by on May. 10, 2012 at 12:36 PM
  • 53 Replies
1 mom liked this

"There is a double standard by which we suspect Stepmothers of being wicked and selfish, yet expect them to be utterly selfless and loving to kids who are not their own, kids who are often hostile and rejecting for many years in spite of a stepmother's best efforts and intentions."

Wednesday Martin, Author of "Stepmonster"



Thoughts?

by on May. 10, 2012 at 12:36 PM
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whatIknownow
by Emerald Member on May. 10, 2012 at 12:43 PM
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I don't know anyone who has either of these expectations. 

I don't expect SMs to love their stepkids or be utterly selfless. Just be nice to them. That's plenty. 

jessiesluv
by on May. 10, 2012 at 12:44 PM
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But if these kids are hostile, isn't being nice to them despite what they do to her, selfless? I would think so.

whatIknownow
by Emerald Member on May. 10, 2012 at 12:48 PM


Quoting jessiesluv:

But if these kids are hostile, isn't being nice to them despite what they do to her, selfless? I would think so.

obviously there are some psycho kids out there that are going to be hostile no matter what, but dont you think if she is just nice to them (and nothing more) from the very beginning, it will reduce the hostility?

lots of times she tries too hard to be significant to them and it gets on their nerves, and that is the cause of the "rejection." If she doesn't try to force herself on them, there will be nothing for them to reject.

sometimes being nice to someone is simply staying out of their way.

I know I've oversimplified it, but "being selfless and loving" is just a bad game plan from the get-go.

SassyMom25
by Gold Member on May. 10, 2012 at 12:48 PM

"There is a double standard by which we suspect Stepmothers of being wicked and selfish,"

I think a  lot of SMs come in with certain expectations of kids (which could make them seem wicked), whether it is from experience with their own kids or a lack of experience with kids altogether. SMs also tend to miss out on the 'honeymoon period' with their DH when kids are involved and I think that is even harder to accept for SMs without bios (which could make them seem selfish).

"...yet expect them to be utterly selfless and loving to kids who are not their own, kids who are often hostile and rejecting for many years in spite of a stepmother's best efforts and intentions."

For the next part, I feel like it is harder to meet the 'needs' of others when you feel like your own 'needs' aren't being met.

newwife1
by Silver Member on May. 10, 2012 at 1:06 PM


Quoting jessiesluv:

But if these kids are hostile, isn't being nice to them despite what they do to her, selfless? I would think so.

Yep. I speak from experience.

Just because a kid is a kid and is part of my husband doesn't mean it's easy to look past all the horrible acts he has done.


newwife1
by Silver Member on May. 10, 2012 at 1:09 PM


Quoting whatIknownow:


Quoting jessiesluv:

But if these kids are hostile, isn't being nice to them despite what they do to her, selfless? I would think so.

obviously there are some psycho kids out there that are going to be hostile no matter what, but dont you think if she is just nice to them (and nothing more) from the very beginning, it will reduce the hostility? NOPE

lots of times she tries too hard to be significant to them and it gets on their nerves, and that is the cause of the "rejection." If she doesn't try to force herself on them, there will be nothing for them to reject.

sometimes being nice to someone is simply staying out of their way.

I know I've oversimplified it, but "being selfless and loving" is just a bad game plan from the get-go.


Tarac1012
by Member on May. 10, 2012 at 1:11 PM
1 mom liked this

well first think of a lot of the Disney movies - it's always the wicked step mother .... so there is sort of a thought there.... but I think in reality, as a women, we are (a lot of times) maternal creatures.... and whenever you are dealing with someone else's kids - kids who HAVE a mom, things can get complicated.  Mom's don't want to feel replaced and step mothers have sometimes an akward place in the whole dynamic. It's a tuff role to be the SM.... I know I have reminded myself many times over the years that I just need to continue to do the right thing... as long as I do, then I know at the end of the day I don't have to worry.  I don't think my DH ever expected me to love SS as if he were my own but he does expect me to care about him and to treat him with respect. I do - and the reality is that I do love my SS though not the way that he does. And that's okay - my husband understands that and appreciates everything I do.

lilangilyn
by on May. 10, 2012 at 1:37 PM
3 moms liked this

I know when I became a stepmom, I didn't want to be "mom." Just myself. Just another caring adult, an aunt type figure, if anything. I wasn't pushy, didn't overstep. My skid, though nice and accepting most of the time to my face, was lying his little ass off behind my back about what an evil piece of shit I was. The more he lied, the more kudos he got from BM and her DD.

I think the quote is accurate. I think we expect way too much of all stepparents in the way of loving and beling selfless towards the kids. Unrealistic expectations that set the stepparents up to fail.

jessiesluv
by on May. 10, 2012 at 2:04 PM
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I have seen a lot of bms in here especially, say "do no harm". In some situations, Im sure it takes a LOT from SMs to do no harm when they are putting up with very hostile children, even when being "nice" to them hasn't worked.

gr8d8n3mom
by on May. 10, 2012 at 2:04 PM
3 moms liked this


Quoting lilangilyn:

I know when I became a stepmom, I didn't want to be "mom." Just myself. Just another caring adult, an aunt type figure, if anything. I wasn't pushy, didn't overstep. My skid, though nice and accepting most of the time to my face, was lying his little ass off behind my back about what an evil piece of shit I was. The more he lied, the more kudos he got from BM and her DD.

I think the quote is accurate. I think we expect way too much of all stepparents in the way of loving and beling selfless towards the kids. Unrealistic expectations that set the stepparents up to fail.

(ok did u sneak into my home and write this off my key board?? LOL)

I agree with this 100%,  Now let me add,to this, how many BM's have told the SM to keep their nose out of the "parenting" or "raising" of the skds, it is ONLY between BM & their DH.(especially if the skds are small) while this sounds ok, the skds still LIVE  at ur house! You have rules and expectations expecially if your a BM urself.  Same rules for all kids, sorry BM. kwim?


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