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Learning to Disengage

treetopannie's picture

This is the first weekend I really feel good about my ability to disengage from overparenting my Skids. I think it's harder when you have your own bio kids, and then you have Skids, it's harder to not swing into mom action with the skids. I have struggled for the past year with how to NOT be a mom to my skids. There's aspects of mothering to being a stepmom, but its also about knowing when to not be a mom. I need practice on not being a mom. But I think I did pretty good this weekend with it. Learning to let Dad take certain issues, and learning to let other issues just go...I am less stressed...feels good. feels damn good. Wink

treetopannie's picture

started therapy thurs and realized from that that i was letting the skids control me in how i would just freak out when they were due to come for the weekend. I kept reminding myself of this realization throughout the weekend, that I deserved to have my own space that they could not and would not control how I felt at any particular time. certain things they say/do EVERY SINGLE WEEKEND get on my LAST NERVE, but i realized that that's something i'm letting them do. i can choose how i feel. i wasn't choosing before.

treetopannie's picture

yes, giving up my need to control. and really taking back control of me and my space and my time, and my own thoughts for that matter. I would be obsessing about them instead of having thoughts about what matters to me. so having more control over what's in my power and giving up control over what's not. the serenity prayer, i guess. Smile

Milomom's picture

Treeto, I am so happy for you and your new path to sanity. Disengaging has made me 1000% happier in my relationship with BF & skids (SD15 & SS12). It takes time - about 1-2 years for me. I used to do the same thing as you. Looking back, I would always sort of "compare" how I would raise my own biokids (I don't have any now) to how BF is raising skids. It would drive me absolutely BONKERS that BF doesn't have the same parenting strategy as my own (nor does BM...she basically lacks most parenting skills in general). For example, I am MUCH more concerned with a child learning basic skills (i.e. respect, good work ethic, morals) and their education (good grades) - and setting boundaries and disciplining them when they behave otherwise. BF is not the polar opposite, but close enough. Of course, he wants them to be good people when they grow up, but he doesn't really discipline them at all, no chores, no consequences for bad actions or bad grades. The skids are overall good kids, respect us but their grades in school are horrible, they are very lazy, they have disrespect for other adults sometimes, are very entitled, lack motivation and overall they do what they wish (most of the time) because Daddy allows it.

Overall, I am a believer in choosing your battles. I won't let skids take "control" of my relationship with BF and they know that we, as the adults, are "in charge". But they are going nowhere fast (just like BM) and I don't expect them to do a 360 at this point. My belief is: YOU ARE ONLY TREATED THE WAY YOU ALLOW YOURSELF TO BE TREATED. Don't let yourself get obsessed with everything that is skids & what comes with that. They have a mother and a father and I let them do the parenting. I love skids and try to be a good role model and do what I can for them, but at the end of the day it is best for you to step back and tell yourself "not MY kids, not MY problem". Good luck!! I hope this helps you.

oceangirl3's picture

I'm trying to learn how to disengage as well. I have a naturally tendency to parent when I have kids around. The tension between my boyfriend and I regarding this whole situation is at an all time high right now. He is not understanding all the pressure I feel I am under, not just with his daughter, but with other things in my life. Any good advice on how to disengage? What helped you? I'm desperate for some help now. SD comes this weekend and I really need to work on disengaging with her and her dad when she is here.

Hogger's picture

How do you disengage when the SS and BD are on the same custody schedule? The parenting role kicks in for SS automatically because the BD is around too. I really want to disengage and have tried for awhile now. Hard to have different rules for each child, especially when they are so close in age as well.