Lessons in Motherhood: 4 Ways Being a Stepmom Made Me A Better Mom by Melissa D. Day, MS
A year and a half ago my husband and I welcomed an ours baby into our family. My adjustment to motherhood has been anything but seamless. For a decade we have balanced raising my four stepdaughters with my own graduate studies in sociology, my unpredictable college teaching career and my husband’s out-of-state job.
Add a newborn to the mix and there are sure to be some bumps in the road!
The experience of becoming Mom, in the context of only ever being a stepmom, has been an interesting point of comparison. In the midst of my studies, I’m conducting research about the stepmother experience—so I probably spend too much time considering what differences can be discerned between motherhood and stepmotherhood.
In American culture, we tend to assume that being a mother is superior to being a stepmother. That’s true even if, in our day-to- day lives, things can look close to the same for women who fill both of these roles. I surprised myself when I kept thinking of the ways my stepmom journey has made me a better mom. After all, aren’t we stepmothers supposed to be taking notes from mothers?
What if we acknowledged the ways mothers could learn from stepmothers’ experiences instead of just the other way around? What follows are four ways being a stepmom has made me a better mom.