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Old member...new problem. Navigating the step-parenting waters

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 

Briefly, I have a 12 year old girl and an 8 year old boy. I have been separated/divorced from their father for 6 years. Their father and I have an amicable relationship. We each have them 50% of the time.

 

I have been dating a man for 7 months. We are serious about moving forward together. We have been discussing moving into a bigger house together in November/December.

 

The kids were introduced to him slowly at about 4 months with an outing to the Harlem Globetrotters. He has been to dinner with us and has attended a couple of family events. This past weekend we all went camping for one night and then to an amusement park the next day with my family.

 

He has no kids of his own but likes kids and likes MY kids. He is patient and kind with them.

 

Well at the end of the day at the amusement park we were all tired and grumpy. My daughter said something sassy and he retorted. Nothing serious enough for me to even make a note to mention it to him later in private.

 

Now the kids have decided that they don't want me to date at all till they leave the house.

 

I have practiced AP with both of them since childhood and I want to give them input, but I certainly don't want to be alone forever. I don't know what to do.

 

Sigh. it was going so well :(

 

Victorian

post #2 of 6
Thread Starter 

of to add, my daughter is extremely headstrong and I am sure that my son is just going along with her.

 

V.

post #3 of 6
With all due respect, its not up to your children whether or not you date. My MIL did this, and she is a miserable person who will probably be forever alone because she waited to date until after her kids were out of the house. Meaning that she hasnt and probably wont date at all. I mean, its 10 years at least before your son is out. That is a long time.

Im not a stepparent, but I come from a blended family, and I hated my step parents for a long time. Now my stepmother is the closest family member to me smile.gif

You like this guy, you are serious, he likes your kids, he does things like camping and amusement parks? Go for it. You deserve to be happy and when your daughter is 25 and she can go to her boyfriends house for Christmas because she knows you wont be totally alone on Christmas Day she will be glad you found someone to share your life with besides her and her brother. Because, (and Im sorry if this stings anyone, Im not trying to be mean) when people are single forever, in laws can be really really resentful of that (and honestly, so can the children)
post #4 of 6
Thread Starter 

thanks :) I need to hear stuff like that. My daughter can be very vocal about things. I don't want to ruin their childhood, but I don't think that I should have to be alone.

 

What can I do to show them that it will be ok and maybe even FUN? We are all going to Disneyland in October...I am hoping that goes really well.

 

Six years is a long time...I wonder if maybe I waited too long?

post #5 of 6


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Victorian View Post

 We have been discussing moving into a bigger house together in November/December.

 


 

I agree that this isn't a choice for your kids to make, but I think this winter is a bit soon to be moving in together. You've kids have only known him for 3 months, and they haven't had a chance to work out their relationship at all. He doesn't know anything about parenting. My advice would be to take it slower and spend more time together with him and your kids, and let some of the kinks in those relationships get smoothed over before adding co-habitating into the mix. I suspect that things will go more smoothly when you do all live together if you take your time.

 

Ultimately, if it continues to be bumpy and there are issues with your DD (beyond her words when she is VERY tired) family counseling is always an option.

 

BUT, back to your main question -- you have a right to be happy and to have a significant other who you love and who loves you. You have a right to feel supported, to have someone to build a life with. And your kids don't get veto power on that, even though they've been APed!

post #6 of 6

Has your bf mostly just been joining in for the big, super-fun outings?  Maybe at this point the kids are kind of seeing him just as the fun guy and that is why your dd reacted so strongly when she saw more of his "human" side when he was tired and cranky.  Perhaps your bf could start joining your family for more normal activities like a casual weeknight dinner or just hanging out on a Sunday afternoon to give everyone a chance to get to know each other without the crankiness and high expectations that sometimes come from the big events. 

 

I know my stepdaughter and I got to know each other best and enjoyed each other's company best during those kind of quiet moments.  She was much younger than your kids, but sometimes those big outings left me struggling with how to deal with a cranky kid and her just wanting daddy (or mommy, which was even harder!). 

 

Good luck!

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