Society places these invisible boundaries on things you should and shouldn’t do as a step-parent. From my experience the deeper you’re in a situation the more those boundaries fade. As stepmoms, we have to place limits on so many things like how we love our bonus babies and even how much we do for them. The truth is that it is unreasonable and impossible to try to make everyone happy all the time. In fact, it’s not your job at all. Your job is to make sure you and your significant other are on the same page and your kiddo is taken care of. It’s not on you to try to fix things that were already in shambles before you arrived. You can definitely help if you feel like it’s the best thing for your household but not at the expense of your peace.
There are so many boundaries that stepmoms are warned not to cross. Just “stay in your lane” and there won’t be any issues. Lies! You could do everything to support your man and help do things for your bonus baby and there may still be issues. Conflict is inevitable in all relationships, friendships, and just dealing with people in general. We all have different backgrounds and ways of thinking so it’s not realistic to think every day will be rainbows and butterflies. I know at the beginning of my relationship I placed an enormous amount of pressure on myself to try to follow these unwritten rules because I wanted my experience to be different than what I’ve seen from others around me. I was open to the idea of one big happy family but that idea was shut down very early on. So one day I woke up and decided that I would not over-extend myself if and when it’s not reciprocated. Instead, I chose to do what I felt was right for my household. I shifted my focus on what I could control. So that lane I mentioned it’s wherever I feel my place is in the moment and not dictated by boundaries society sets in place. If I feel strongly about something I’m going to speak on it. When my husband and I were just dating I’d let a lot of things play out and step in when I felt I needed to. As a wife, I’m very vocal to my husband about things that directly affect me and our household.
I’m the type of person who’s always in fix-it mode. I’m always thinking (sometimes too much) and because of that, I have to remind myself I don’t have to take on everything. Constantly trying to handle stuff (like I’m Olivia Pope) can be exhausting but it’s just in my nature. You can ask my close friends …… I’ve always been the “mom” of the group. What I’ve learned since becoming a stepmom is the best form of self-care for me is letting things go. I’m not losing sleep or sweating the small stuff. As long as my home is in order it’s all good. I’ve learned so much about myself during this journey. I’ve had so much support as I’ve been figuring out this role that it’s helped me to see things from new lenses. I know there’s still so much for me to learn and over time I’ll change even more but I’m excited about the place I’m currently in. This lane seems like a winner from where I’m standing.