This prestigious position is by far one of the most important roles to fill. It’s an underrated position, but significantly important. The community is large in number. According to the US Bureau of Census, everyday there are 1,300 new stepfamilies. Over 50% of US families are remarried or re-coupled. But only 45% of the children are considered “well off.”
Here are some life long basic fundamentals for being a SUPERSTAR STEPPARENT.
Approach this vow with an open mind
Fully accept your new spouses kid(s) as your very own. You are officially a new mom or dad. Your daily, weekly and monthly decisions shall now include them. Fitting them into your comfy lifestyle will disorder your rotation, but you’ve had plenty of time to formulate by now. Be open-minded on all levels -just about. There really is no middle ground at first. At the beginning you may feel out of place, but with time you’ll balance it out. Also, it’s imperative you have a sense of self. We all put on an “act” every now an then, but be yourself.
Get involved. But don’t over step your boundaries.
Sounds complicated? At times it can be. Make sure there’s a clear and respectable understanding between you and the biological parents before you commit.
A permanent role will open up for you to make your debut. Things like dropping off or picking up from school, sports activities, ice cream dates, baking pastries or reading bedtime stories. Set mini goals around your new responsibilities. Example: If you guys are baking pastries, buy or hand make aprons with names on it to make it more fun and thoughtful. Any role you have, do your best!
Don’t try to outshine the opposite parent, that strategy will cause jealousy and/or conflict. If the opposite parent is a “no show” or a “deab deat,” the role is yours.
In the book The Four Agreements by Miquel Ruiz, he influnces readers to “Always Do Your Best.” Ruiz explains, your best will depend on whether you are feeling wonderful and happy, or upset and angry. Doing your best is about taking action with grace, because you love it.
Create a fun loving environment
Relax. You don’t have to be so serious and don’t overdue yourself. In fact, be the cool parent occasionally. Think outside the box. Understand their interest and cater a bit to what makes them smile. Example: If your new son is obsessed with a particular PS4 game, at the right time, spent 10 to 15 minutes playing with him. This is a great way to allow them to open up to you. In due time.
How to deal with discipline? First off know that your stepchild will test you. If you already have children -you know. It is your spouses responsibility to have a family meeting (spouse, stepchild(s) & you) to lay the ground rules, therefore everybody know’s the game plan. What should the meeting entail? The basic levels of respect for starters
- no badmouthing
- say, Thank you
- Yes or no Ma’am/Sir
I would approach this very carefully. I strongly advise not whooping or spanking them at all or at least no time soon. If your spouse is a disciplinarian. Great. Let them handle that part. Rather your job may be to talk calmly to them about their wrongdoings. Try to correct their wrongdoings by suggesting some sort of solution to the problem. If this behavior continues, you may wanna chat with your spouse on tactics to discipline then. Maybe take a valuable item away. Such as…
- smart phone
- gaming system
- cancel their upcoming plans
- no TV
As you grow and develop actionable habits, this will hopefully become second nature to you. It’s not easy by any means. The more you invest the better the outcome. You have this incredible opportunity to be a mentor and a daily role model.
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