Stepbomb: I've decided it's time to say goodbye. I'm going to stop writing "Stepbomb" because I need to give my full focus to fixing the situation between my husband's ex-wife and me.
Since day one, I've felt that I was thrust into a side of divorce I was unprepared for. Although I've lived through divorce (my parents are divorced and I have a stepmother), I was still shocked by how hard it is to be a stepparent.
Of course, if the mother of my stepchildren had welcomed me with open arms, I would have been telling you a very different story over these past few months. Naively, I'd thought that was going to happen, based on our relationship for the two years prior to me getting engaged to her ex-husband. We were friendly at sporting events, had dinner together and always had pleasant exchanges.
I do not blame my husband's ex-wife for all of our problems. I take responsibility for the mistakes I've made, and I've done my best to learn from them. The purpose of writing this post each week was to gain insight from you. And I thank each and every one of you for providing me with your opinions.
My plan is to work even harder to build a relationship with my husband's ex-wife, to see her side of things, to give her more credit for how hard it must be to watch another woman build a relationship with her daughters. My husband, who is a very active father and has by no means ever shirked his responsibilities to his children, is also working even harder to better his relationship with his ex-wife.
I will say that unless you've directly walked in the shoes of a stepmother, you will never truly know how hard it is. Imagine marrying the love of your life and also falling in love with his children, only to be constantly reminded that you belong in the background, that you aren't a "real" parent. I believe there is a middle ground that needs to be discovered between biological mothers and stepmothers. And until that happens, until misperceptions and insecurity (on both sides) can be put aside for the sake of the children, we are going to continue to have rocky post-divorce situations that aren't fair to anyone -- especially the children. And at the end of the day, the most important people to me in this situation are my stepchildren.
Thank you for reading each week.