Monday, August 5, 2013

Adventures in Sorta-Stepparenting

I had grand plans for getting caught up on my blogging this weekend and getting a few posts scheduled for the remainder of my Sorta Step-Parenting Gig, especially since my own children are away, so I'm down to just three kids right now.

Didn't Happen.

This step-parenting thing is weird when you aren't really the stepparent and are just "dad's girlfriend." Normally under these circumstances, I'd just defer to Lawn Boy, but this time, for the first time, I'm the one home with them all day, so waiting for him doesn't fly. Adding to the complications is the fact that we don't live together, so we are splitting our time between two homes.  It's easier at my house: my house= my rules, but the children want to be at their dad's because it's where they feel most comfortable, which puts us in a little bit of a grey area, because Lawn boy has different expectations and parameters than I do.  He has been clear though; I'm in charge.

The biggest hiccup has been establishing levels of respectful behavior.  His children are permitted to speak to each other AND their parents in a manner that is simply not acceptable to me. That's been the biggest obstacle, because while sometimes they are deliberately testing me, sometimes they are rude and don't even mean to be! 

On a more humorous note, we also had to tackle the whole lift the seat and pee IN the toilet, not ON it thing more that once. I addressed it a my house and then had to do it again at Lawn Boy's. His 9-year-old said to me, "but I wipe off the seat."  Not well enough my boy, not well enough!  Pick UP the lid and put it back down when you are done!

My landmark discovery of the week was that 'new' toys are extremely helpful in getting them to clean up, when they aren't normally required to. Especially when that 'new toy" is a small Dustbuster. Then they'll fight over who 'vacuums!"

It hasn't been easy, but I'm glad I offered, because the extra time it's allowed them with their father has been priceless.  I'm hoping that as we go forward, and are all in one place, it will get a little easier, although I know that each time they come back, they will have fallen back into what's permissible when they aren't with us and there will be a learning curve as we find our groove again!


Leah said...

Time is your biggest friend. And patience. And being on the same page with Lawn Boy. Lots of adjustments, but sounds like you are doing just great:)

Aleta said...

You have a lot to be proud of. You're going to be a great influence with your step children. It's good that Lawn Boy is handing you the power. You need his support in this!

The Dose of Reality said...

You are awesome to step in, especially when you don't even have your own children right now! They are lucky to have you! :)-Ashley

Cyndy @ Back in the Bush said...

I also think it's great that you're doing that for LB & the kids.
I hope it gets easier!

Mimi B said...

lol Trying to figure out how to respond to this in a positive way. =) I just see so much of my boyfriend's kids in LB's kids it makes me cringe. We're working on so many of the same things, but I haven't had to have his kids for any period of time yet. We're getting closer to spending more time together and it's making me a bit nervous. hahahaha You've done an awesome job and down the road the kids and LB will see how much you've added to their lives!