Overheard at my local coffee shop: “I’m telling you, Amanda, this parenting stuff is for the birds. My kids are so ungrateful. I do and do for them and they just seem to expect it. I need a very long vacation.”
No matter what I did, they didn’t like me. His kids didn’t like me. And his ex hated me. I turned myself inside out trying to please the kids. They still hated every cookie I baked, every meal I cooked. Some days it felt like they hated me for breathing. Meanwhile, I bent over backwards to show his ex I was a good and kind person she could trust with her children. Continue reading “Stepmom Help: Inside the August 2016 Issue”
Lots of stepmoms show up in my counseling office because their family doctor prescribed an antidepressant and recommended therapy. Admittedly showing signs of depression (i.e., irritability, sadness, changes in appetite, difficulty sleeping, fatigue), these women readily agree with their doctors that something is not right. What both doctor and stepmom fail to consider, however, is that the symptoms of depression are stunningly similar to signs of bereavement. Continue reading “Stepmom Grief: Inside the July 2016 Issue”
There are common phrases you, as a man, may use when you want to avoid conflict. Doing so, you often wind up kidding yourself and your partner by thinking that it isn’t because you’re avoiding conflict. It’s because you’re a peace-loving guy!
You met a great guy—the kind of guy you’d been waiting for. He had so many of the qualities you wanted that you couldn’t believe your good fortune in finding him. Sure, he had kids. But he was worth the extra effort. You had no idea (nor could you possibly have imagined) that partnering with this wonderful guy would take you down a road of vulnerability like no other.
Two people fall in love and decide to marry or partner for life. They make the decision together and enter the union with love, hope and a commitment to stick with it for better or worse.
Unlike a first-time marriage, children often come with the vows made in a remarriage. Those children, regardless of age, are part of the newly created family. But they do not make the choice to form a new family. Nor are they the reason for it. The reason for the remarriage is the love and commitment shared by the two people saying, “I do.” Continue reading “Stepcouple Strategies – Inside the March 2016 Issue”