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Is there a double standard?

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"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
Replies (11-20):
justahousewife
by on May. 10, 2012 at 2:14 PM
1 mom liked this

I think this would be eliminated greatly if the step-parent was allowed the respect an adult deserves in the home and not just co-exist in the same home with step-children. 

When we tell an adult they're not allowed to parent in any way, shape or form that gives the children free rein to treat that adult like a subordinate and it tends to be later on in life that they stop and realize what they're really doing is wrong. 

If nothing else the home should be treated with a pack mentality; adults rule and children are to be respectful.

Steamedpuddle30
by Hi, my name is... on May. 10, 2012 at 2:21 PM
I Agree. I'm told to stay out of this and that. Which is fine. I'm told let Dh handle it(which usually is true) then when it comes to lets say x mas I'm EXPECTED to spend the same amount on my skids and my dd's.

All of the sudden I'm expected to be equal...it's odd sometimes.Yet never tell them Anything or let it go.

I don't like that sometimes I am expected to do more for them then I'd do for my dd's so that we can "bond" I will if I can but I don't thnk I'm required to look like a butch bc I simply don't want to do whatever task BM or skid asked me to do.
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 .


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.

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Steamedpuddle30
by Hi, my name is... on May. 10, 2012 at 2:22 PM
Good one:)

Quoting gr8d8n3mom:



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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whatIknownow
by Ruby Member on May. 10, 2012 at 2:23 PM


Quoting justahousewife:

I think this would be eliminated greatly if the step-parent was allowed the respect an adult deserves in the home and not just co-exist in the same home with step-children. 

It is up to her husband to make that happen.

When we tell an adult they're not allowed to parent in any way, shape or form that gives the children free rein to treat that adult like a subordinate and it tends to be later on in life that they stop and realize what they're really doing is wrong. 

You don't have to be a parent in any way, shape or form to be given "the respect an adult deserves in the home."  It is completely unnecessary.

If nothing else the home should be treated with a pack mentality; adults rule and children are to be respectful.

Dad should rule the children, no question. When Dad lets the children run the show, the whole family falls apart. But the SM may or may not be part of the ruling team, depending on the age of the children, how often they are there, etc. Still it comes down to Dad's parenting. If he is a strong parent, the SM will do fine. If he is a weak parent, she's looking at a long bumpy road. If Dad is a weak parent, there is nothing the SM can do to compensate for that.


Moms2NTwins
by on May. 10, 2012 at 2:42 PM
1 mom liked this


Quoting whatIknownow:


Quoting justahousewife:

I think this would be eliminated greatly if the step-parent was allowed the respect an adult deserves in the home and not just co-exist in the same home with step-children. 

It is up to her husband to make that happen.

When we tell an adult they're not allowed to parent in any way, shape or form that gives the children free rein to treat that adult like a subordinate and it tends to be later on in life that they stop and realize what they're really doing is wrong. 

You don't have to be a parent in any way, shape or form to be given "the respect an adult deserves in the home."  It is completely unnecessary.

If nothing else the home should be treated with a pack mentality; adults rule and children are to be respectful.

Dad should rule the children, no question. When Dad lets the children run the show, the whole family falls apart. But the SM may or may not be part of the ruling team, depending on the age of the children, how often they are there, etc. Still it comes down to Dad's parenting. If he is a strong parent, the SM will do fine. If he is a weak parent, she's looking at a long bumpy road. If Dad is a weak parent, there is nothing the SM can do to compensate for that.


On one old forum I was on the above was thrown in to describe the "disney dad" the fun dad who never enforced rules in order to not upset the stepkids, rules out the window when the stepkids are there, ignoring bad behavior as to not have to discipline the child etc. Making for a horrible situation for the SM who can only exist in the home and nothing else

wife to Ron and proud 

momma to 4 kiddos b(15) b(10) & my twins b/g(7) bonus kids: b(14) g(10)

http://www.truthforsophia.com/ 

whatIknownow
by Ruby Member on May. 10, 2012 at 2:44 PM


Quoting Moms2NTwins:



On one old forum I was on the above was thrown in to describe the "disney dad" the fun dad who never enforced rules in order to not upset the stepkids, rules out the window when the stepkids are there, ignoring bad behavior as to not have to discipline the child etc. Making for a horrible situation for the SM who can only exist in the home and nothing else

Yup. The Disney Dad is a SM's nightmare.

justahousewife
by on May. 10, 2012 at 2:56 PM


Quoting whatIknownow:


Quoting justahousewife:

I think this would be eliminated greatly if the step-parent was allowed the respect an adult deserves in the home and not just co-exist in the same home with step-children. 

It is up to her husband to make that happen.

When we tell an adult they're not allowed to parent in any way, shape or form that gives the children free rein to treat that adult like a subordinate and it tends to be later on in life that they stop and realize what they're really doing is wrong. 

You don't have to be a parent in any way, shape or form to be given "the respect an adult deserves in the home."  It is completely unnecessary.

If nothing else the home should be treated with a pack mentality; adults rule and children are to be respectful.

Dad should rule the children, no question. When Dad lets the children run the show, the whole family falls apart. But the SM may or may not be part of the ruling team, depending on the age of the children, how often they are there, etc. Still it comes down to Dad's parenting. If he is a strong parent, the SM will do fine. If he is a weak parent, she's looking at a long bumpy road. If Dad is a weak parent, there is nothing the SM can do to compensate for that.


And that's where the double standard is issued. It's up to dad to rule but yet sm has to just take whatever dad decides to enforce. BM gets a HUGE say in how SM is treated if the children have any sentimental attachment to her. So we just hope that BM and dad are these great strong people who feel that adults should be respected no matter their connection. SM just has to hold on tight and be taken for whatever ride everyone else deems fit. Oh and she is expected to do so graciously with no resentment for the children.

I don't buy it. I don't care who the adult is in the home, they're to be respected. You might not like the person, you might not want anything to do with them, but it's their home so they are to be respected. Respect includes following their rules for their home.

While SO doesn't have young children I've had several step-parents of my own. I know first hand what goes on between SM, BM, SD and BD. We happened to be part of one of those family's who thought belittling the other person was a cool thing. It's rather sad as an adult to look back and realize what we were encouraged to do. My own children will be taught to be respectful of the adults in the home they happen to be in.

whatIknownow
by Ruby Member on May. 10, 2012 at 3:01 PM


Quoting justahousewife:


Quoting whatIknownow:


Quoting justahousewife:

I think this would be eliminated greatly if the step-parent was allowed the respect an adult deserves in the home and not just co-exist in the same home with step-children. 

It is up to her husband to make that happen.

When we tell an adult they're not allowed to parent in any way, shape or form that gives the children free rein to treat that adult like a subordinate and it tends to be later on in life that they stop and realize what they're really doing is wrong. 

You don't have to be a parent in any way, shape or form to be given "the respect an adult deserves in the home."  It is completely unnecessary.

If nothing else the home should be treated with a pack mentality; adults rule and children are to be respectful.

Dad should rule the children, no question. When Dad lets the children run the show, the whole family falls apart. But the SM may or may not be part of the ruling team, depending on the age of the children, how often they are there, etc. Still it comes down to Dad's parenting. If he is a strong parent, the SM will do fine. If he is a weak parent, she's looking at a long bumpy road. If Dad is a weak parent, there is nothing the SM can do to compensate for that.


And that's where the double standard is issued. It's up to dad to rule but yet sm has to just take whatever dad decides to enforce. BM gets a HUGE say in how SM is treated if the children have any sentimental attachment to her. So we just hope that BM and dad are these great strong people who feel that adults should be respected no matter their connection. SM just has to hold on tight and be taken for whatever ride everyone else deems fit. Oh and she is expected to do so graciously with no resentment for the children.

I don't buy it. I don't care who the adult is in the home, they're to be respected. You might not like the person, you might not want anything to do with them, but it's their home so they are to be respected. Respect includes following their rules for their home.

While SO doesn't have young children I've had several step-parents of my own. I know first hand what goes on between SM, BM, SD and BD. We happened to be part of one of those family's who thought belittling the other person was a cool thing. It's rather sad as an adult to look back and realize what we were encouraged to do. My own children will be taught to be respectful of the adults in the home they happen to be in.

I'm not following. "SM has to just take whatever dad decides to enforce"  - don't you think Dad should enforce that the kids respect his wife? 

How does BM get a say in how SM is treated? If Dad is insisting that his children respect his wife, and enforces that (delivers consequences when they don't), then the kids will respect SM. It has nothing to do with BM at all.

I don't think yo have to "hope" Dad is a strong person, you have to CHOOSE a strong  person. Your partner is not randomly assigned to you. You choose him. Just as you say that you will teach your own children to respect the adults in yoru home, you should choose a husband who will do the same.

pdxmum
by Platinum Member on May. 10, 2012 at 3:02 PM
1 mom liked this

That quote just seems so out of context with the powerful words of Ms. Martin.  A quick google search brought up this cool interview:

http://www.examiner.com/article/an-interview-with-dr-wednesday-martin-author-of-stepmonster

I think as SMs we simply need to not try to be either extreme - because both of those descriptors is an extreme - evil or self sacrificing.  I am neither.  I have done the self-sacrificing route - doesn't work.  Thank goodness I have never been evil, although BM and SD would say otherwise...

justahousewife
by on May. 10, 2012 at 3:29 PM


Quoting whatIknownow:


Quoting justahousewife:


Quoting whatIknownow:


Quoting justahousewife:

I think this would be eliminated greatly if the step-parent was allowed the respect an adult deserves in the home and not just co-exist in the same home with step-children. 

It is up to her husband to make that happen.

When we tell an adult they're not allowed to parent in any way, shape or form that gives the children free rein to treat that adult like a subordinate and it tends to be later on in life that they stop and realize what they're really doing is wrong. 

You don't have to be a parent in any way, shape or form to be given "the respect an adult deserves in the home."  It is completely unnecessary.

If nothing else the home should be treated with a pack mentality; adults rule and children are to be respectful.

Dad should rule the children, no question. When Dad lets the children run the show, the whole family falls apart. But the SM may or may not be part of the ruling team, depending on the age of the children, how often they are there, etc. Still it comes down to Dad's parenting. If he is a strong parent, the SM will do fine. If he is a weak parent, she's looking at a long bumpy road. If Dad is a weak parent, there is nothing the SM can do to compensate for that.


And that's where the double standard is issued. It's up to dad to rule but yet sm has to just take whatever dad decides to enforce. BM gets a HUGE say in how SM is treated if the children have any sentimental attachment to her. So we just hope that BM and dad are these great strong people who feel that adults should be respected no matter their connection. SM just has to hold on tight and be taken for whatever ride everyone else deems fit. Oh and she is expected to do so graciously with no resentment for the children.

I don't buy it. I don't care who the adult is in the home, they're to be respected. You might not like the person, you might not want anything to do with them, but it's their home so they are to be respected. Respect includes following their rules for their home.

While SO doesn't have young children I've had several step-parents of my own. I know first hand what goes on between SM, BM, SD and BD. We happened to be part of one of those family's who thought belittling the other person was a cool thing. It's rather sad as an adult to look back and realize what we were encouraged to do. My own children will be taught to be respectful of the adults in the home they happen to be in.

I'm not following. "SM has to just take whatever dad decides to enforce"  - don't you think Dad should enforce that the kids respect his wife? 

How does BM get a say in how SM is treated? If Dad is insisting that his children respect his wife, and enforces that (delivers consequences when they don't), then the kids will respect SM. It has nothing to do with BM at all.

I don't think yo have to "hope" Dad is a strong person, you have to CHOOSE a strong  person. Your partner is not randomly assigned to you. You choose him. Just as you say that you will teach your own children to respect the adults in yoru home, you should choose a husband who will do the same.

Ideally both bio-parents should teach respect. However when children go home and BM is being toxic about the SM that the children are not going to just say "mom we have to respect her because she's an adult". Most children don't do that, especially if they lean in the bm favor. KWIM? BM influences the children's feelings towards the SM and some treat the children like puppets to do their damnedest to get at SM. I'm sure you've read the stories of BM's attitude rubbing off on her children. Jealously, resentment, etc can be pretty toxic emotions.

Unfortunately not everyone makes the wisest choices the first time around or ever for that matter. Divorce happens, children are stuck in the mix and bio-parents have to figure out what to do next. It would just be more ideal for the step-parent coming into the picture if both bio-parents were grown up about the whole deal. Sadly enough not everyone is. Until it happens I think step-parents will continue to be handed a double standard.

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