I’m thankful to be a bonus mom, because that means my husband accepted me as his wife and to be a part of his kids life. That part was not easy, I became a step mom at 25 which is young. After graduating High school, I planned to move away for college and get a degree in criminal justice but that changed quickly after I met my husband. After that my role as a bonus mom officially began, it has been the most rewarding, greatest and exhausting thing I’ve ever done. Here are 6 tips that have helped me navigate into a blended family.
Have your husband back – The burden of having to think about his kids rights and visitation during a divorce while communicating with his x-wife can be stressful to any man. Support him, and encourage him during the toughest times even when you feel left out. Support can go a long way, it can make him feel like he’s doing the right thing and it can be good for his mental health.
Flexibility – Plans can change at the last minute due to schedule conflict, inconsideration, miscommunication and many other things, So it’s a good idea to work on flexibility if you haven’t already.
Do not intrude – Don’t get too involved with your husband’s ex-wife and kids decisions, because that can make things worse and cause more conflict. It’s only best to get involved if your husband says it’s ok to.
Don’t compare households – You can not change your step kids’ bedtime schedules, meal plans, or what they are allowed to watch if they’re doing those things differently at their other home. This is great because it will teach the kids balance and it won’t make them feel like they’re doing anything wrong, they will feel free-spirited and it will teach them differences.
Validate – Make sure you often reinsure your step-kids that they are loved, valued, special and important. During divorce situations and blended families, kids often feel lonely, crushed and angry so reinsurance is important. Create great memories and fill their lives with special moments to distract them from any chaotic situations
Listen – Sometimes during chaotic situations, we like to over talk and argue. Sometimes its great just to listen, that’s a good way to build any relationship, make progress, improve situations and encourage respect with both parents and kids.