Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Surprise Step Child?

Dear Jacque,

A few months after I met my now husband, he discovered (through paternity testing) that he had a child from a relationship 9 years prior. The child’s mother waited for 9 years to seek child support and never established contact between my husband and her or the child (they lived 2,000 miles away).

This past year, the child’s (now 14) mother established contact with my husband and ultimately my husband has finally talked to his son online, over Skype and emails. Father and son seem to enjoy their talks and my husband is planning a trip to see him in the next few weeks. I don’t plan on going mostly because this boy hasn’t even met his father yet; bringing along an extra “mom-type” wouldn’t be fair to anyone.

I have done everything in my capability to be a good stepmom to the two kids that we share custody with with his ex-wife. In fact, some would say I’ve gone above and beyond the Stepmom call of duty. I love my stepkids and consider them like my own.

What perplexes me is that I can’t seem to wrap my head (or heart) around liking this third kid. I want to consider him part of our family, but I’m struggling with that. I admire my husband for stepping up and wanting to establish a relationship with this kid but I feel like a horrible person because I don’t want to deal with the new extension of our stepfamily.

Our custodial kids don’t know about their half-brother and we have no intentions of telling them at the moment. Both kids tend to have behavioral issues when confronted with major upheavals (as could be expected).

Any advice for how I can maintain my sanity while I warm up to an “extra” stepchild?

Read the answer on Becoming A Stepmom

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