Stepmom’s Having a Baby!
What to Expect When You’re Expecting
BY ERIN CARELESS, PHD
One line, two lines … positive! You’re having a baby!
I vividly remember looking at that pregnancy test strip and erupting into shocked, nervous, excited giggles. I went straight to a kids’ clothing store and bought a tiny white onesie with the word “Petite” inscribed on it. I wrapped the pregnancy test in the onesie, placed them both in a gift bag and impatiently waited for him to come home from work.
It was a joyful time—except for the fact that I suddenly couldn’t drink my beloved coffee without turning green. Before I met my husband, I didn’t think I would ever have children. It wasn’t something I had dreamed of since I was young, like many of my friends had. But there I was a very happy Mommy-to-Be.
That initial joy of being pregnant didn’t wane for me. However, I did begin thinking about my stepchildren and how they’d react to the news. They were 9 and 7 at the time. I worried they might be jealous, become angry or be unsure about what this meant for our family dynamic. As with most things when you’re living in a stepfamily, having a baby is made a little more complex by the dynamics of a second marriage.
Having a baby is a life-changing event in any context, impacting everyone in the immediate family. For a previously childless stepmom, as I was, it’s important to understand that all of those family dynamics will shift and change to make room for the new addition. …To read the rest of this article, log in and download the August 2018 issue. Don’t have an account? Click here to subscribe.