Step Up or Step Off
I know it isn’t easy to help raise someone else’s child. It’s a big responsibility and it’s not yours. It might be hard to connect with the child or maybe you’re just not ready for that kind of connection or no matter how hard you try, the bond just isn’t there or the simple fact that every time you’re around the child, your reminded that (s)he is someone else’s. There are a whole lot of different factors as to why step parenting doesn’t always work out. I know for me personally, I didn’t have that daddy’s girl bond with my step dad, not even during the time I believed he was my “dad”. It just got worse when I found out he wasn’t. I seen how much love he would show his two biological children (my half-sibs) and I wondered how come I didn’t get the same attention. As an adult, I realize that it must have been hard for him to accept another man’s child. To have to look at me every day, hear my voice every day, feed me, buy me clothes, and just support me knowing I wasn’t his. I could see how he would come to resent me. But I’m just a child, I didn’t know, I had no idea. I never asked for this, it just is. You can’t take it out on an innocent child. They say history repeats itself. Well, I’m a believer. I found myself in the same situation. There I was with a child and then a possible step dad. They didn’t bond whatsoever. As much as I’d hoped they would, they didn’t. My dad was basically my son’s dad. Even though he knew that my dad was his grandpa, he would always tell me that, that’s his dad to. I couldn’t be angry at my son for not taking a liking to this guy, it just wasn’t there and I wasn’t going to force him either. But, this was someone that I was going to be with and they both had to learn how to tolerate each other, I guess you could say. I could see the frustration at times on both my son and my boyfriend. It was just me and my son for the first year of his life, just the two of us, now all of a sudden he has to share me with somebody else. On the other hand, me and my boyfriend are trying to build a relationship and I’m feeling like maybe he thinks my son is getting in the way of that because he would act out or have a temper tantrum and sometimes he just didn’t want to deal with it, and, he really didn’t have to. He could leave anytime he wanted and there would be absolutely no obligation on his part. As for me, this is my son, he is my obligation forever. I can’t just walk away when things get tough. He needed to make a decision. All or nothing, and if it didn’t work, then hell, it didn’t work. But at least we could say that we gave it our all. He decided to stick around and we worked on making it work. It wasn’t easy to say the least, we had a lot of ups and downs. But he did take on the roll of father figure. So this post is kind of an homage, if you will, to all the step parents in the world who have stepped up to become a co parent or the parent that the absent parent never was. We don’t acknowledge you very much but I would like to say thank you. Sometimes the step parent is closer to the child than the biological parent. As was the case for me and my step dad years later. It took some time, but eventually it happened. I still have hope for the two guys in my life.
**Shout out to Shards of DuBois** Go check out her blog.