Being a step-parent
As many of you may know by now, I am a step parent. So, I thought I’d write a little blurb about step-parent life through my eyes!
I just want to say that being a step-parent has been a challenge. I’m sure there are reams of books on how to be a step-parent that are equally useless to the “having your first child” books are to the parents. I will never read a step-parenting book. Not because I’m a bad step-parent (I haven’t had the years and years to mess up the child as the parents have), but because I feel that, again, reading a useless book about raising someone else’s child seems counter-intuitive. So, I buy rum. Rum is delicious and costs the same as a Step-Parenting for Dummies Book. Despite all these, I’m going to give you ten things I’ve learned since becoming the “instant parent” that everyone teases me about:
- Being the step-parent is like being the cool Aunt that everyone wants to hang out with. Except the step-parent has no pull when it comes to discipline. Even the cool Aunt gets listened too. Not so with cool pseudo-mom.
- As a lesbian, I was quite fine without all the penis. Having a young boy has made up for all those years of not having a set of junk running around the house. No male role model am I. Except that I can build a fort out of anything.
- I was smart and missed diaper time. This has not spared me from poop and vomit everywhere. I assumed not having children meant I only had to wipe my own butt. Wrong.
- No, I don’t know what Bakugon, Pokemon, Bey blades, movies all in Lego, or Skylanders video games are. I know I’m a lesbian, and didn’t like Barbie, but that meant I liked GI Joe. But not the new movies. Why are all these boy toys so hard to say and even harder to play? I remember lego was rectangles and you made a square house or a rectangle fire engine. Get out of my fire engine, Lego Yoda.
- She who makes the best chocolate milk has to do everything for the child that he cannot do for himself. I think that’s in the Bible somewhere.
- New step-parent seems to be automatically disliked by the ex-spouse, for no particular reason. I’ve developed a mathematical formula indicating that the hatred of the ex-spouse for the step-parent is exponentially proportional to the amount the children adore the step-parent. I am guessing the exponent is about x1,000,000. I knew math was good for something. I am still unclear what happens in the teen years when he hates us all.
- I have officially participated in 1,574,547 baths. Perhaps I am the male role model, but again, all these bath toys are like foreign pieces on the stupid game Risk that I could never figure out. As a step-parent you may NOT bath with them, despite being soaked anyway at the end. Step-parent bath equals prison at any age. Saying no just makes them sad, which is solved by the world’s best chocolate milk.
- The step-parent really has no legal rights over the child, but is still step-mom or dad. Until he breaks his arm riding his bike. Then the step-parent is some sort of satan-like moron. Luckily, this has not happened to me yet, as I have not found a way to control gravity around the child. Physics is not my strong suit.
- I’ve discovered that step-parenting is somewhat akin to purgatory. You aren’t really in Heaven, but aren’t really in Hell. You are responsible for the well-being of something that does not really belong to you. And normally have no idea what story he or she is telling you about what it was like when his parents were still married. And how that was better than the way things are now. And can his parents just be married again. This is the time, good step-parents, to just smile and prepare 2 parts rum with 1 part glass. Forget the ice or any other liquids.
- Step-parenting can be rewarding. You get a child without the pain of a husband (heehee) and no labour or stretch marks. You can come into the relationship at really any age depending on whom you choose to be with. 17 seems like a good age to come in at. Some days you secretly realize why you are a cat person and never entertained the idea of getting pregnant. Other days you see that, while getting knocked up still appears unappealing, having a kid is super fun. And legally, he isn’t yours, so if he becomes a felon it’s not on you. *wink* Plus, there’s the bonus of rum. And because you are the cool parent, half the firsts happen with you. In your face, regular parents!