I am curious if anyone has any good book recommendations for this. DH has been in the picture since DS was 2 (he's 5 1/2). At first their relationship was fantastic, then over time it seems like a wedge has been driven between them. I feel like DH gave up trying and DS is only 5 1/2...so where's that leave us?? I am just looking for some ways to help facilitate a better bond between the two of them because, honestly, it's affecting my relationship with DH.
Hello, I'm sorry, unfortunately I can't suggest any books, but i can offer some advice.
I'm a step parent and my relationship with my stepson changes all the time. I always love him, but sometimes we're close and other times we're a little distant. What we do have is a strong bond which allows our relationship to change whilst still feeling like a family. Two things have been really useful are:
1. Changing tact
- making sure I concentrate of being more of a grown-up friend, rather than a 'disciplinarian'
2. Quality time
- spending a little time each week doing something only he and I do together. Each week we cook something. whether its breakfast, a cake, dinner, etc. Thats what works for us, but you partner could do something a bit more 'boyish'. Like build a lego car together (or something more age appropriate!)
It's all about getting to know each other :)
I hope this helps.
Delilah. www.stepchildren.co.uk - the practical guide for step parents.
Delilah, thank you. Both my DH and I have one son from a previous relationship but his son lives nine hours away so the time that either of us gets to parent DSS is so limited. When we do get him I give him the same love and snuggles that I give DS but there is a clear difference these days in how DH treats each child. Your two suggestions are exactly what I feel needs to happen but it doesn't. You have pretty much described the exact opposite of what happens between them. DH is definitely the "disciplinarian" in the house. I know a lot of it has to do with the fact that he's VERY type A and he feels like I am "to easy" on DS. The fact is that I treat DS with the same respect that I treat an adult and I include him in the solutions to problems and talk things through with him. The quality time is a serious issue, too. This is mostly because he *doesn't* intitiate activities with DS so DS's default is to come to me b/c he automatically expects a "no" from DH when he asks him to participate in activities. It all makes me very sad and I feel like if I could just find a helpful book that I could give him to read it would be helpful. I feel like I've talked myself blue on the subject.