Dear Stepmom

I realize you despise me with every ounce of your being but I do not know why. I do not understand where your anger towards me started. What did you even know about me in order to form such a negative opinion? Was your opinion formed solely on the information provided by my ex-husband? Honestly, what would your ex-husband say about you? Would any of it be nice? Would much of it be biased? Would your version differ from his? Couldn’t that possibly be the case with what you have heard from my ex-husband?
I have thought many times about the “anti-relationship” between us. I have thought about what type of people we both are. I know without a doubt that you have people in your life who think you are wonderful, caring, kind, funny and understanding. It’s confusing to me that I have never seen those aspects of you. Why would you not want me, the child’s mother, to think those great things about you?
I also do not understand why this situation is a competition. Can I not just be my child’s mother and you be his stepmother? Why isn’t that good enough? Why do you put me down to my child and seek to replace me as his mother? Why must you make him feel guilty about loving me? Yes he lives you, or rather his father, but I am here, I am involved, I am his mother. He doesn’t need another mother, but an additional adult that supports him and loves him could be a wonderful bonus in his life. Are the sneers necessary? Are the faces and gestures at exchanges necessary? Is attempting to limit the amount and the manner of my access necessary? You have a son yourself, for one minute put yourself in my shoes and think how you would feel if someone were doing to you what you have done to me for so long? Under what conditions are those actions actually justified?
The competition continues even further than just the child, doesn’t it? Why do you feel the need to attack me professionally? Why do you feel the need to try to cause problems in my marriage? What possible benefit could that give you? What possible benefit to my son could that be? Will I ever be able to live my life without fear of you trying to destroy anything good or promising that I have?
My ex-husband loves you. He and I shared a time together when we were young and then we both grew and went our separate ways and grew up some more. I do not want him back and he does not want me back. We have both moved on. The only thing left of that is our son who needs us both in his life. Just as my husband can never replace the father, you cannot replace the mother. Trying to do so will only push my son further from you.
I love my child and I believe you love my child as well. That should be enough common ground for a good starting point of cooperation. I have tried my hardest to avoid you at all costs so this situation does not escalate but, if you are ever inclined to lay down the gauntlet and start anew in the spirit of cooperation I would welcome the fresh start. We do not even need to discuss anything from the past, it’s past, let’s just smile, treat each other with respect, work together and move on.

~ by Stepfamily Letter Project on May 21, 2009.

7 Responses to “Dear Stepmom”

  1. AAWESOME!!!

    I am mom, and you are stepmom, so step aside for the real deal.

  2. wow that was a great letter. it is so true in my has such meaning and truth. i really want things to be civil between me, my ex and his girlfried but they make it impossible.

    • ow that is sad, but I just wanted to point out that not all step moms r that way and not all bio moms r easy to get along with

  3. I wish my husband’s ex wife (who left him for another man but started wanting him back when he met me) could be as wonderful as you sound. I would give anything to get on with her. Her children are absolutely wonderful – thanks to her being a great Mum and dh being a great Dad. She won’t even acknowledge that I exist. It hurts me because I love my family so much and she is a special part of it.

  4. Its funny how your letter sounds exactly how i feel as a STEPMOM. Sometimes bio-moms are on the “evil” side as well.

  5. As a stepmom I would love to have a positive relationship with my husband’s children’s Mom. I have extended the olive branch numerous times and have had it thrown back in my face at every turn. Their Mother is very jealous of the relationship I have with them. I am not trying to “steal” her children I am only trying to make their lives easier by showing kindness and interest in what they do. It is a strange relationship that of the step and bio Moms and it is a relationship. I hope at some point she will be able to see things as you do.

  6. For “Biomoms”, the issues. It hurts that he found someone that can make it work. Moving on. The things that happened between you are his past and she’s his future. Even if you “hate his guts” part of that hate is the failure of the marriage or relationship, who wants to admit you failed at anything. You thought it was goning to be great. White picket fence, 2.5 kids and a dog. What does he say about you? Is she running the show? Do friends and others who knew you as the marrieds think it was all your fault, that your difficult, she’s so nice. Do they think “at least he traded up? Now to make it worse your replacement in his life (just take that as new wife, starting over. Not that you were traded in but it hurts) is now with YOUR kids. Yes they are his too but you’re their Mom. Now another wife is playing house where you left off and your kids are there playing with her. She is the fith wheel you never saw coming. The day you had your children it never crossed your mind “I wonder how hard it is going to be to share you with your stepmom, your other family”
    Now Stepmom’s:
    You are #2 (or 3 or 4 depending on his past..) He has been there done that. He not only dated other people but you have to sit with the reality that he loved another woman for reasons that will never probably be clear or told to you enough to marry and have children with her. He created life with her. It didn’t work and now you are here #2… You know he questions things “is this going to be like the other”. You know he compares you when you argue. As if being the rebound, the can I should I try again girl, wasn’t bad enough you love him like crazy and you take it on even when he becomes them. Yes you signed up for the package and you take it in sride. You are terrified! They are your toughest critics. Will they like you, will they except you, will they kill you in your sleep… It is a new world and them comes the true source and for biomoms maybe the take home message because you feel it too: who wants another woman in your realtionship! Who? Who? In their right mind would sign up for this. Oh you did because you love him, because you want to love the kids. But let’s face it real Mom’s barely get credit and true respect most times get ready for the crumbs of that. A good chunck of his money goes to her and a huge chuck of your time and his time goes to them. Your relationship is torn three ways and it just bugs you that one of those ways is to an ex lover. Why should biomoms and stepmoms get along? If you do great you both have truely grown as people but for the majority it is just not the family life or relationship you truely want and feel you were meant to have. But you wer dealt it so understand youbut then also understand her.

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