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Step-parenting, do we have to put up with other peoples kids?
Family & Parenting / 1:34 PM - Thursday May 12, 2011

Step-parenting, do we have to put up with other peoples kids?

After watching the Dr-Phil show i have came to the conclusion that being a step parent is one of the toughest roles in the world, why do step parents get thrown under the bus, heres the problems step parents face.
[1] your never accepted by his or her kids.
[2] they dont respect you as a step parent.
[3] you cant disapline them.
[4] the biological parent always take their side.
[5] they remind you every day that your not their
mom or dad.
[6] there bratty.
[7] they think you want to replace the parent
thats absent.
[8] they will never love you as a parent.
why do some people put up with this?

- Asked by steady4rhyne, A Mr. Nice Guy, Male, 46-55, Self-Employed

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You put up with it because:

1) You love their mom (in my case) or dad.
2) They NEED parenting. Sure its hard and, let me tell you, you get sick of it, but you know you are making them a better person.
3) When they are in their 20s/30s, they will recognize what they put you through and appreciate it!

Hang in there, its a pain, but if you get support from the parent, you can do it!

Have a good one!

- Response by kanaka, A Life of the Party, Male, 46-55, Dallas, Executive

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My husband is raising my son from my first marriage and to be honest I dont envy raising someone else's child. I'm not sure if the roles were reversed I could do it.

- Response by youngfuddyduddy, A Married Girl, Female, 36-45, New York, Who Cares?

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I totally disagree with all of this. :-) This depends on the biological parents way of parenting, rules, etc... definitely depends on the situation and person. I have a stepmom and loved her! We were great kids and she was a great mom, even better than our biological mom. We respected her and she respected us. I was 8 when she married my dad and now I will be 28 in a few weeks and still love her just as much now as I did then. :-) This depends on the family dynamic and the rules and whether you stick to them! And I LOVE Dr. Phil btw! He is the man! haha!

- Response by ml272010, A Life of the Party, Female, 29-35, Atlanta, Administrative

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No one has to put up with it.... They just choose to stay because they are in love with the kid's parent.

- Response by kinzie1125, A Thinker, Female, 29-35, Who Cares?

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i was with my ex for 5 years, basically helped raise his son from age 1.5 to 6 and he loved me like a mother. his actual mother would give him presents to give me on mothers day. so yeah, it depends on both parents and how the child is raised, and how mature they are as well. i think the problem lies with jealously that the other parent has a new boyfriend or girlfriend or spouse. my ex let me discipline his son and in fact, his son a lot of times chose me over his father. the best was when his son would call out for ME when he was upset, even at his mothers. lol but i got lucky with a good ex girlfriend who understood the importance that its about the kids, not pettiness. and she got lucky with me that i wasn't mean to her kid for no reasons and loved him with all my heart :)

- Response by nicky711, A Thinker, Female, 36-45

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As a guy widowed when my boys where early teens this one hits home hard. My new s/o has girls almost the same ages as my boys and it hasn't worked out exactly like the Brady Bunch did. However, I disagree with every statement you list at least to some degree.

Currently, the kids are what keeps us from living with each other. We hope to be empty nesters in another couple years and live together then. It has been hard on both of us, my boys have been slow to accept her and worried about the replacement factor, her girls can be bratty and demanding and I think their mother lets them get away with too much. It ain't always easy, but I'm glad we've both been willing to slog through it as my new s/o really is the love of my life, and slowly both set of kids are coming around to at least respecting and liking both of us and us together.

- Response by grinandbareit, An Engaged Guy, Male, 46-55, Other Profession

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Because they are crazy. The relationship with a Stepchild is largely determined by the relationship the biological Parents have. If they are contentious and had nasty breakup a stepparent is going to be in the cross-hairs all the time. They are in position as the "Enemy". That makes it difficult to bond with the child.

On the other hand if the Parents are cool and the child is normal and well-adjusted, it can be okay. Clear rules of the role must be discussed BEFORE Marriage with BOTH Parents and the Parents MUST have logical repercussions in place to protect the Stepparent from what could be an unruly bratty child. Primarily this falls to the Spouse that re-married.

If 2 Step-Parents are involved it just gets that much more complex and now you have 4 Parties trying to Parent one child. It can be tricky for sure and people should not go into without much consideration...

- Response by thottienc, A Career Woman, Female, 36-45, Who Cares?

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Good question, why do they put up with it? But when they do, they can be saviors. My cousin had 3 kids from a prior marriage but after she divorced her first husband, her kids were in BAD shape! She's not very good with discipline and her kids were just bad, bad, BAD! They were obnoxious to be around and even though I'm related to them and they were just kids, I found myself actively disliking them. Then she met a new guy and married him, and even though he had to endure pretty much everything you listed, now 5 years later those kids, WHO ARE NOT EVEN HIS KIDS, are SO much better, and its pretty much ALL down to him. Of course THEY wont admit it, they still occasionally say "you aren't my dad" but they are just WAY better than they were, and the oldest is due to go to college this fall and he's very smart and the future for him looks very bright - if his step dad had never come along, he'd be mess right now.

I feel somewhat guilty that it took someone from outside the family to care enough to straighten those kids out - maybe I should have done my bit to be the male-role model that they clearly needed but of course they are my cousin's kids so there is only so much I can do since I only see them occasionally. Anyway he has basically saved those kids and I am very grateful to him for that.

- Response by xerxes, An Intellectual Guy, Male, 46-55, Washington, DC, Lawyer

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It's not always that way. I love my step mom. She is my family. She has always been able to discipline me just like one of my parents. If she said I was being bad,I was,and my parents believed her...I wouldn't lie about it either. She just couldn't make the big decisions but she could put in some input if it concerned her. I never thought she was a "replacement parent" just an extra parent. She may not be blood but she is my family and has always looked out for me. I even named my daughter after her and my mother. It's about the individual child and how the parents raise them. I knew how to act right,some kids don't...mostly b/c they aren't taught!

- Response by misskitty420, A Cool Mom, Female, 29-35, Student

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Sorry but this doesn't describe my experiance as a step-mother or as a step-child. I love my step father dearly. and miss him despreately (he passed away) He definately disaplined me. I always respected him. And he was my dad as far as I'm concerened.

And my step daughter adores me and treats me great and her dad doesn't take her side automaticlly.

- Response by bellabyrdie, A Thinker, Female, 29-35, Who Cares?

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I disagree that you are never accepted by step children. My husband adopted my two children from a previous marriage and we had another child together. They all call him Dad.
Rosey

- Response by roseytalks, A Thinker, Female, Who Cares?, Tampa, Who Cares?

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(1) Sometimes this is the case but not always. Both my husband and I were raised by step-Dads who we treat like they were our birth fathers.

(2) I'm coming to find out that it doesn't matter if you are the biological parent or not if your kid is a disrespectful brat he/she will not discrimnate.

(3) My husband disciplines my son, as well my Step-Dad disciplined me as a child.

(4) Fortunately we are all on the same page i.e. husband, ex-husband and myself

(5) I'll give you this one but only when they are pissed at you. Hell this is all they usally have against you!

(6) Any kid can be bratty


(7) Only if you act like it.


(8) I disagree! I loved my step-dad like he was my own. Actually most people didn't even know he was my step-dad. I have more respect and love for him then I did my birth father.


I will say that raising a child as your own is a noble thing and it takes a lot of patience, love and understanding. If you give this to a child they will respect and love you regardless if you are not their biological parent.

- Response by kdtxchic30, A Thinker, Female, 36-45, Who Cares?

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That may be how some kids act towards their step parents but i loved my step mom and i accepted her right away.

- Response by carolcarr, A Thinker, Female, 26-28, Tampa

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I have a step mother. Sometimes, I don't know why she puts up with us. But hey, it's not like the gets the bad end of it.

First of all, my sisters and I (and our step brother) really didn't have much say in the situation.

Second, it is so difficult to accept someone new into your home when you have already established it, ESPECIALLY someone with different styles, thoughts and ideas.

I do respect her and appreciate all that she does for us. I knows she does things that she doesn't have to. And the weird thing is my sisters and I were completely OK with he before she married our dad. It's just difficult to accept someone new into the home.

- Response by agent89201, A Sportif, Female, 18-21

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I think it all depends how they were raised and how the parents handle the other parent new relationship. My parents divorced when I was 5, they have always been friendly to each other (they hardly talk, but when we are all together for my kids birthdays they are civil to each other), I accepted and love my step-dad (married to my mom for 15 yrs.) and step-mom (married to my dad for 10 yrs.), I would do anything for them.

- Response by anrade, A Trendsetter, Female, 29-35

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I woUlD THINK tWIcE ABoUT MaRRYINg some one with children. There are enough problems in marriage without buying more D

- Response by duggers, A Guy Critical, Male, 66 or older

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not all step children will be like this. it depends on the kids and how the biological parent guides them and their ages etc.

I am dating a man right now with 3 kids. he has custody of his kids. I am far from being the step mom since we have only dated for months, but I can tell you that I love those kids and they love me too.

there has to be boudaries set and expectations

- Response by fondacox, A Trendsetter, Female, 36-45

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I think it depends on the stepparents and the stepchildren. I was a stepchild. Nothing you've said was true in my case. And, this was a man my mother had an affair with.

1) I not only accepted him. I accepted him as my Dad. Because my biological Father was a deadbeat, child abuser, and insane.

2)I respected my stepfather greatly.

3)True. He never disciplined us. Because, we never did anything that would have warranted us getting disciplined by him. My mother disciplined us. He knew that is was the job of the biological parents to discipline and to keep problems down. He also knew how he felt about anyone laying a hand on his own children. Especially, after treating his children's mother badly and leaving. But, he still disciplined them. HIS children's stepfather received the treatment you've listed.

4)Not true, because there were never any issues where it was a children against the stepfather deal going on. If there was any type of disagreement or rules made, she listened to all sides. But, she wasn't going to allow her children to dictate her life with her husband.

5)Only happened once. It was me. Because, I had known him since I was 2 years old. I looked at him as my real Dad, so when my feelings were hurt. I said that to him once. I hurt him and I never did it again.

6)I was never bratty. Our relationship was very special and had a lot of love and understanding. He taught me about life and a lot of the things you would expect your Dad to teach you. He didn't have the same relationship with the other children because they were much older when he came into their lives.

7)Never thought that at all. None of us believed he was trying to replace our Father. Because, he never treated us like he was. He was my Mother's husband, whom we respected, period.

8)I love him dearly, just as I loved and would have continued loving my biological Father had he desired to be a DAD. People put up with it, because they love their spouse and felt they were worth it enough to go through whatever challenges might occur TOGETHER. The good or the bad. And, some have already filled out what type of parent/child relationship went on while dating.

If it was a healthy, respectful, functional, relationship with well-behaved children it wasn't that much of a risk. Most if they sense what you've listed in those children or biological parents; they wouldn't have stayed in the relationship long enough to marry the person. But, those who love deeply and are willing to be a positive influence in the lives of those children would.

I would love to love a man's children as my own. Even knowing they really were not. I would love to encourage and be a positive influence in their lives. I would never try to become their parent. I would respect their parents role in those childrens lives and the relationship they would have to continue to have with the other parent.

If those children or the relationship between the parents were unhealthy, unhappy, and wrong. I would not involve myself with that. I would not take it out on the children. I would do my best to be a good stepparent. But, I'm not going to be in a relationship that was unhealthy or dysfunctional. The children would have to know my position in that household and be well-behaved, loving children. No demon seeds sorry!

If my spouse wasn't willing to be in control of that situation and let those children know that I was to be respected and obeyed. I wouldn't be with that man, period. The "step" part wouldn't have even been the problem. Just the people involved period. IMHO

- Response by thelovedovefor1, A Creative, Female, 46-55, Atlanta, Who Cares?

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You don't have to put up with anything.... But then you CAN'T date their Mom

- Response by nicolegillenwater, A Thinker, Female, 36-45

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As a Step child I have to say this si not always the case.

1) I accepted my step mom from day one she made my dad happy and was nice to me what's not to accept.
2)I have tonnes of respect for my step mom I know I was not an easy kid to live with and respect that she was still there and never gave up on me
3)My step mom to this day can still discipline me. I would not even think of crossing her.
4) I don't speak to my biological mom so this is not an issue
5) I've never once told her in anger she is not my mom.
6) I was bratty at times, but so can all kids be.
7) My step mom always made sure that I knew she didn't want to replace my mom and at times encouraged me to try and rebuild my relationship with her.
8) I absolutly love her as a parent, even more so perhaps because I know that she did not have to be a parent to me, she did it because she wanted too and I love and respect her for that!

- Response by psychoticbabe1, A Thinker, Female, 26-28, Other Profession

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Most of your premises are incorrect (at least in healthy homes).

1. Never is a long time, and unless the child is a brat or the step-parent an a$$, they will eventually accept them
2. Respect is a tricky thing, but it can be demanded/earned and eventually given in both directions (in a healthy home)
3. This is a point of view of a parent that really isn't a good parent. If I appoint an adult as a caretaker of my child I EXPECT them to discipline them.
4. Again, a good parent isn't one that defends a child in the wrong and is intellegent and calm enough to know when that is.
5. That only happens if the actual parent allows a insufficiently disciplined environment. So again, a good parent would not allow that to be said.
6. They're bratty only if the biological parent raised them to be bratty before the step parent was even on the scene.
7. Thats a defensive reaction thats not adaquately addressed by the parents. Again, poor parenting
8. That is probably true... But You don't have to love your step mom as much as your actual mom to still love, respect and think of the step parent as family.

You have to remember... Parents of the Year are not on the Dr Phil show.

- Response by An Intellectual Guy, Male, 36-45, Teaching

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