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Brand new to step-parenting and seeking guidance

Baker_girl328's picture

Hi everyone, my name is Lacey and my boyfriend's two beautiful boys have just started calling me mom. They have never had a mom since their dad has full custody so this is a huge deal. I am the first person they have ever called mommy. They are 4 and 6 years old and they are wonderful. But I need some advice. For one, is it too soon for them to call me mom and should we stop it, if so how would we do that? How do I make them respect me as their parent but still be a fun person to be around? I find the hardest part of all of this is that I'm starting with kids and not babies. I have missed important mile stones. Encouragement would be appreciated. thank you!

tog redux's picture

Well, yes, it's too soon for them to call you Mom, you aren't even married to their father. And you aren't their parent, though they should certainly respect you as they would any adult. How long have you been together?

Baker_girl328's picture

We have been together almost 2 years. We have been talking alot about getting married but my sister is getting married next spring so we are waiting. 

CLove's picture


I would firstly read as much as possible to see some of the future pitfalls.

Calling you mom - well I myself when SD13 was 8 and had asked me, I just said "Clove works for me".

If the bio mother is not dead, be aware that she could pop up at any time to reclaim her status.

Feel free to post as much as you like - however we are anonymous here so - you might want to take your name out...

Baker_girl328's picture

Unfortunately their mother went down a bad path. She got addicted to drugs and alcohol when the little one was 3 months old. My boyfriend has sole custody. She hasn't seen them in 4 years and has never tried to get contact. 

ChzyBob20's picture

I'm in StepHell.

You need to dump and run. He is just your boyfriend. You do not have boys. He and their mother do. This will end badly for you.

I've been "step parenting" for many years. I made a huge mistake and now I'm stuck and on tenterhooks. I compensated for BowelMovement for years and it spectacularly bit me on the a$$.

Your boyfriend is grooming you to be the unpaid nanny, chef and chauffeur for his prior spawn and likely will use you, a childless young woman, for your money.

There are plenty of men without prior kid baggage, ex wives, ex baby mamas etc. You owe it to yourself to run. Run fast. Don't look back.

Baker_girl328's picture

That's an incredibly unfair statement to make about a man you dont know anything about. My boyfriend asks me to do absolutely nothing for his kids. I do everything because I want to. I want to be their mother. I have been with these kids for almost 2 years. I have experienced first days of school and birthday parties. I have given baths and been their while they have been sick but not because their dad asked me to. He thanks me for everything I do for those kids. I'm sorry to hear you are so unhappy but that's not everyone's circumstance. 

Petronella's picture

How old are you? 

And you need to read some other posts and blogs before attacking someone for giving good and true advice.

If you want to be a mother, have a baby. Or does your boyfriend not want a child with you?

Who's paying for everything for these kids? You, or your boyfriend? 

Baker_girl328's picture

Why does my age matter? How did I attack anyone? We do want to have children but I may not be able to have any. Not that thays any of your business. my boyfriend has a very good job and supports his children just fine. 

24 years as a SM's picture

There is a lot of SM's on here that have been in the battlefield for many years with StepHell. ChzyBab20 is one of them. My user name is 24 years as a SM, but I have doing this for over 30 years. Some of us are tired and have to deal with Step crap everyday. With the issues happening around the world right now, some are on the edge.

Not all of us are sunshine and roses, we are blunt and say things that can be misinterpreted, if you don't like what someone has said, ignore it and move on to the next comment. There's an old saying "Don't judge, until you've walked a mile in my shoes".

JJCastle's picture

Welcome. I would be careful to allow the kids to call you "Mom". They do have a mother that could hypothetically resurface at any time, regardless how unlikely it seems. That is a turf war you do not want to get into, especially since you are a girlfriend without marital commitment. Keep that distance. Dont financially contribute to the child rearing. Do not be the default setting for childcare. Allow DH to parent and you act as backup support. Its very easy to overdo in step parenting and it can be messy and painful to undo when necessary. It is important to know your role and act within that. 

If BM really is out of the picture and stays that way, you and BF could consider a stepparent adoption some day when you are married and things play out further. BM would have to sign off on that though but something to consider for the future if it all works out. 

Allow your BF to take the lead on all child rearing decisions. Your job is to support him and work as a team. If he makes a parenting choice, back him up - be a United front. Nothing is easier to manipulate than two adults who aren't on the same page. You can still be a fun person. Color with them, play with them, just be involved with them.

If you provide the fun times but also back your BF up on discipline, you will gain respect. 

Rags's picture

I was the first person my SS-27 ever called Dad(dy).  His mom and I met and started dating when SS was 15mos old.   My DW booted the Spermidiot  for cheating on her before the baby turned 1yo and moved out of state for university when SS was 13mos old.  That is where we met.

So, I get what you are experiencing.  

I find nothing wrong with your SSs calling you Mom though I do think that you should minimize it unti you and their dad marry.   

In hind site, it would have likely been best if SS had not chosen to call me Daddy until his mom and I married.  But, he knew before we did I guess.  We married the week before he turned 2yo.

You May very well be their mother.  Just as I am the only real father my son has ever had.  Kids are smart.  They know who their "real" parents are and the real parent may not have anything to do with biology.


JuliAdam's picture

Good for you (and the kids) that you're willing to adopt them, and that the mother is (so far) not an issue.

I think 2 years is enough time for you to get to know your SO and the kids pretty well, specially if he has full custody and you're around all the time.

So my advice to you, since you're not having issues with you BF and parenting the kids, would be to seek information about PARENTING, and if possible share it with your BF so you can be in the same page.

That said, it's always good to talk honestly to you BF about your expectations and boundaries as the relationship evolves. Points I'd be aware of in your case: Who takes care of the kids when grandma is not available? What's the financial contribution you're willing to make if ever needed? What will be the response if BM or the kids ever decide to claim their "biorights"? What happens if your relationship ever comes to an end, are you ready to be cut off from your skids?

I don't think it's early for them to call you mom if everybody feels comfortable with it. I'd just find a way to let it clear for the kids that they DO have a bio mother that's for some reason out of the picture now, and that you're willing to fill in the position for the time being, or as long as you're daddy's girlfriend.

And if you're really sure about your relationship with your BF and your skids, I'd consider the adoption option mentioned above.

I wish you all the best and that you manage to build a loving family together.