Blended Families

Support and advice on blended families including being a stepmom or stepdad, raising children from a previous relationship, and dealing with your ex.

Bree posted in Behavior Aug 22

Crying fits at day care

So my step son just started a day care/preschool setting this week. Every morning at drop off and every afternoon at pick up, he has these crying fits that range from controllable to uncontrollable. He will either just cry and say no or he will drop himself on the floor and flail his arms and legs (side note: he only does that fit when his mom drops him off). I’m asking for suggestions on ho... More

  • Nana
    Aug 29

    Be confident yourself (if you believe in the environment and staff) and the hardest thing is don’t linger. Talk ahead of expectations and the fun things he might do. At the end of the day ask him questions like “what was the best/ hardest thing about today. How did you show kindness. How did you show kindness.” Reward when drop off and pick up are positive. Tell him at pick up that (favorite t... More

  • May-Ling
    Aug 29

    our preschool suggested we pick up this book to read with our kids to get them used to some kind of dropoff ritual for consistency:

Daughter has never had a father figure

Hey guys, I could really use some advice or a different view point on my situation. My daughter is almost three and I was a single mom most of her life. During her whole life she’s hardly been around men. (Lots of girls in our family) Only my stepdad, my grandpa and her father on the rare occasion. I think because she was hardly around men, she developed a fear of them. So she never really lik... More

  • Anonymous
    Aug 13

    I've typed a response to this post several times but have deleted it constantly because I just can't figure out how to word what I want to say. Basically, your boyfriend needs to stop. If she is scared when he gets stern he needs to stop. End of story. I went through this with my boyfriend, the two of them started butting heads a lot. I had it out with him and explained that he needs to... More

  • Anonymous
    Aug 13

    Is she really scared of him though if she behaves fine when she’s alone with him? And if she’s behaving with just him... then technically he’s also seen her good side too right? Maybe it’s not fear that’s the issue but really her just being a toddler and testing you both as a team. When you disagree on discipline, do you show it or express that in front of her? Maybe she’s trying to figure o... More

Anonymous posted in Blended Families Jul 26

Boundaries with coparenting

My ex and I get along well, we are both engaged to new partners, we have a 6 year old that lives with me and stays with him one night a week. Our son just had surgery and has a 2 week recovery, so he won’t be able to go back and forth between houses. He is going to stay with me since he is mostly always here. His dad insists he should be able to come and spend time with him for a couple hours, ... More

  • Anonymous
    Jul 27

    I disagree with your fiance. I live with my boyfriend and my daughter. Her father tends to come up once a month to visit. When he does, he stays in our house (he would never be able to afford a hotel stay) and we cover food. I dont like my ex. My boyfriend doesn't like my ex. The visits aren't always super comfortable, but we love our child. Her father is finally making an effort to be ... More

  • Serrina F.
    Oct 09

    I'm in a similar situation like yours with my oldest son and his father who has a wife and another child together and than there's my fiance whom I have a child with. So what I would say to that is to have a sit down with all the adults to make everyone as comfortable as possible and come to some kind of agreement, understanding. Especially being that this is a special situation with a... More

Anonymous posted in Blended Families May 18

Out of state custody

I am looking into moving to another state in order to get away from my daughter’s father- he is really not a safe person. I know I need to be in a new state for 182 days in order to gain jurisdiction there. Does anyone have experience in this type of situation that could offer me advice or pleasant stories (I’m terrified to do this). Much love! Thank you!

  • Anya levonavna
    May 20

    I was in a very similar situation I’m 2012 when I found myself in a toxic marriage with an abusive man. We lived in PA but I was from New York City and still had a lot of strong ties there. I took my two year old son and left in the middle of the night. My husband came several times to try to take our son back but as soon as he would show up I d call the police. I went to the precinct and I spo... More

  • Anonymous
    May 24

    Anya, thank you! How did you get jurisdiction? My biggest question now is what do I need to do right away so that I can prove that I have been there 6 months when the time comes?

Really struggling with 7 year old step daughter

Hubs and I each brought in a child from a previous relationship and then we have one together. My daughter (4years old) loves him tremendously and most of the time loves spending time with him unless she is tired or doesn’t feel good then it’s mommy time. My daughters father isn’t in the picture and hasn’t been there since she was about a year old. His daughter (7 year old) has never really wan... More

  • Anonymous
    May 18

    From the perspective of a step daughter - my step dad came into my life when I was 2, my sister 4. I didn't remember times with my dad so I took him in and accepted him as dad immediately. My sister did not. She fought with him constantly, it continued until she moved out at 18. I know it's frustrating, but you have to try and understand how hard it is for that girl to watch her mom pop... More

  • Anonymous
    Jul 26

    I might be way out of line with my thinking, but 7 years old isn’t too old to make her fix her mistakes. She pulls clothes off hangers and tosses them on the floor to get your attention or get a rise out of you...I’d tell her she has until morning to pick them up and put them back in the closet or she will lose some privilege. That’s that. I also would consider therapy for the whole family. And... More

Step dad struggling to be as loved as mommy.

My fiance has been struggling lately with my daughter. He feels like a terrible dad because my daughter says she doesn't want to spend tine with just him. This is his first time around a kid and he's been strict as of late. I try to tell him when he's going overboard but he doesn't always listen. They fight a lot and I'm at a loss as to what to do. She cries when I leave, or... More

Anonymous posted in Blended Families May 07

My son is resentful of his siblings and his stepdad

My 12 year old son is resentful of his stepdad and his younger siblings. We have been together for 7 years and have 2 children together (3 & 1). Before that, it was just my older son and daughter (who are now 12 & 15). He feels that his stepdad and younger siblings have taken me away because they require much more attention. Any advise on how to get him through this?

  • Brian
    May 07

    As a dad and step dad, I’m just honest with the kids. I don’t know how this is suppose to work, but I have enough love for all of them and I try to make time for one on one with them individually. Sometimes it’s helping with homework and other times it’s ice cream or just cuddling and watching their favorite shows. Good luck.

  • Sam
    May 10

    I could have wrote this. Good luck mama! ❤️❤️

Anonymous posted in Blended Families May 05

When to introduce my significant other to my kid?

I’ve been talking to this guy for about a month now we’ve went on a couple dates and spent a few nights together we’ve talked about a lot of the serious topics and have the same views of what we want out of life and have the same values we click in that sense and in person things just feel right with him and I can see myself with him for the long haul and this is the first guy I’ve been with si... More

  • Anna
    May 13

    I’ve been debating this myself, similar situation. The previous poster made a good point about attachment; that’s been my concern. But a friend that’s been a single parent said that she benefited from introducing her kids early - if the kids didn’t connect with the guy, she took it as a sign and they ended up being true. That being said, I think for me it will boil down to timing, my comfort le... More

  • Anonymous
    May 21

    Not for a while. I wouldn't introduce a man to my kid until at least 6 months of dating if not more.


My SS will be 6 in a few weeks. He is bright, sweet, and loving, but also argumentative and defiant. All of this seems to be on point with his age. But when I moved in with him and his dad about a year ago, he was still throwing fits and his behavior was very much like a toddler, instead of an almost five year old. We have made major progress with his behavior, but a couple things are worrying ... More

  • Joanna
    May 04

    I don't think these behaviors are alarming. But if you think that his behaviors are delayed, his school should have resources to evaluate it. Trust your gut.

  • Elissa
    May 04

    He has been seeing a counselor for several months. This just occurred to me yesterday and wanted to ask. I did email his counselor as well

Anonymous posted in Blended Families Apr 26

How can I help my stepdaughter not feel torn?

My awesome husband and I have been together going on 7 years. We have shared custody of our daughter. She was 4 when I met her and we took our time in getting to know one another before her father and I got married. Her parents did not have a healthy co- parenting relationship for year before I stepped onto the scene, but I have Since the beginning I have been respectful of her mom and don'... More

  • Tiffany S
    Aug 11

    My bonus daughter is a teenager now (15). I've known her since she was 4. Her father and I have been married for 8 years. She revealed to us 3 years ago that her step father ( mom's current husband) was touching her since she 5 til 12 when she told. Child protective services got involved, my bonus daughter moved in with me and father, we now have custody. My bonus daughter told her mom... More

  • Kellz
    Sep 17

    wow... so I hope this is still an active post.. bonus daughter. I like that!! I have like little to no advice.. at this moment... more like another problem, issue... I need help. so here we go, my *bonus*child lives with me and her dad and has ever since she was 2. Her mother is in prison, and she hasn't always been.. but shes never really been more than a pop in from time to time. needl... More

Anonymous posted in Blended Families Mar 29

Do I step back or keep going

I’ve been dating my boyfriend for a little over a year now, He has a beautiful little 6yo girl and I love her to pieces and I’ve grown to be very involved in her life. But recent events have reminded me that I am very much not her parent, one day I hope to be but currently I’m not. Sometimes I feel like a glorified babysitter and nothing more. Do I continue to try to be a maternal figure in her... More

  • Erin
    Apr 01

    If her mother is in her life, you will NEVER and nor should you want to be able to compete with that. Depending on the situation you could be more of a maternal figure eventually but you may have to accept that being a step parent is difficult and make the best of it. If you don’t try too hard it can be nice but don’t ignore your own needs or you will only end up resentful and that’s how you be... More

Xena posted in Behavior Mar 20

6 Year Old, that doesn’t wanna listen.

I’m needing help on this problem too. I’ve been with this little girl for 8 months now, moved in with her & her dad ( bf of mine ). She hasn’t been respectful or good at listening to me at all. She acts totally different when her dad gets home from work. Or when she’s around other people. She likes to ignore me Or throw tantrums. So I send her to timeout. But it seems like she isn’t learnin... More

  • Xena
    Mar 21

    Thank You all so much for the help! I will try things out, make some charts for chores & etc and see where it goes from there . Thank you so much y’all

  • John Maxwell
    Mar 22

    All you have to do is engage in all activities she loves doing, Make her see you and talk to you as a friend not someone trying to replace her mom.

Xena posted in Behavior Mar 20

How to make 6 year old clean up?

I need advice on how to make her understand that she needs to pick up her toys, clothes, shoes, & etc. when she’s done with them. I kept telling her if I see any toys on the ground they're going with me & I’ll take them or I’ll throw it away. Am I doing the right thing?

  • Jessie
    Mar 20

    I think positive reinforcement is almost always key, but IF the time calls for it, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with grabbing a trash bag for a little scare and saying, “well, I told you... If you can’t take care of your things by putting them back where they belong, then I’ll give them to someone who will.” ;) Good luck!

  • Elissa
    Apr 01

    I would tell her she has til such and such time to pick up her things. If she doesn’t, the item goes in time out, for like a day, or she gets an extra chore before it can come out again. We have a lego chore chart and my SS loves to complete everything so all the LEGOs are on it. You could try something like that as well

Anonymous posted in Blended Families Mar 17

New boyfriend

How long should I wait to bring my son around my new boyfriend? I've been good friends with my bf for almost 10 years now, but we didn't start being a couple until recently. When and how should I tell my child's father? My child's father and I have been broken up for almost 2 years, but still living together until about a month ago. My child's father and I had no issues no... More

  • Kerry
    Mar 18

    Did your child know your bf before you started dating? How old is your child? Imo if youve known him for that long and trust him have him around your son but as a friend to him not a “father/dad” figure. The father cant dictate who you have around your son unless it puts your son in danger or a bad situation. If you have good friends and family, then have them around your son. Specially if you ... More

Rissa posted in Adoption Mar 07

1st birthday

So I’m adopted and I’ve invited both my birth parents and adoptive parents to my l.o. 1st birthday. My adoptive mom is extremely jealous that I have my birth mom involved. Please tell me all things that could go wrong bc I’m super nervous.

  • Rody the donkey
    Mar 14

    You should be sensitive to your adoptive mom’s feelings. Maybe treat bio mom at the same importance as an aunt. Talk to adoptive mom about it. Adoptive mom would’ve love to birth you herself. She shouldn’t have to feel like someone else is taking the valuable title of grandma away from her. This stuff matters. Also, talk to other adopted kids and see how they handled this problem themselves and... More

  • Elle
    Mar 21

    Be sensitive to your adoptive mom's feelings. No one wants to feel replaced or replaceable. Reassure her that no one -- not even the woman who gave birth to you -- could replace her as your MOM and your child's GRANDMA. I like the above idea of giving the bio mom something like aunt-like status, similar to how friends are sometimes aunt-so-and-so. Suggest sitting down separately wit... More

Anonymous posted in Blended Families Feb 27

Remarried with two children

So I had my first child with my first husband and my second child with my current husband. My first child and my current husband have always butt heads since me and him got together. He has always been very respectful, compassionate and respectful of her feelings. But yet she treats him as second best even when he goes above and beyond to try to earn her love and respect. Any suggestions from a... More

  • Anonymous
    Apr 09

    Thank you Sammyjo for your advice!


My 7 year old stepdaughter has been giving us attitude at home and is now acting up at school, not listening to her teachers and flat out telling them no. We talked to her about it but it's not helping! Any advice?

  • Scarlett
    Feb 10

    I walked her to class and talked to the teacher. She has been not doing her work and standing in her chair during class which made the other kids laugh which in turn made her want to do it more. I had her apologize to the teacher and we had a much better end of the week!

  • Angie
    May 26

    Have you gotten your daughter into therapy yet. Ive seen some of your other posts about daughter and bowel control and u also said she hadnt seen her mom i awhile....wanted to know if you finally sought treatment. The absence of her bio mom could be affecting her really bad....despite u being a great stepmom, she needs to talk about it with a professional asap

Anonymous posted in Behavior Jan 15

3 year old regressing

My 3 year old step-daughter lives with me and her father and has been for 2.5 years now. Her mother has been in and out of her life off and on but she now sees her every other weekend and since this started consistently about 5 months ago my step-daughter has regressed in potty training, talking, and maturity. She has a lot of anxiety and anger since our time sharing of every other weekend with... More

Anonymous posted in Blended Families Jan 15

Mother in Law drama. Trying to parent over us?? PLEASE HELP!

WARNING: LONG POST BUT I'M DESPERATE Hey Mommies! (& Daddies) My hubby and I have 3 kiddos, 1 baby boy in common (6mo.) & He has 2 children from a previous marriage 8 yr old boy and 10yr old girl. My stepkids mother would never let the kids go to their Gmas house and they never got alone time with her. Which I honestly think is ridiculous. When I became pregnant I told my MIL that ... More

  • Anonymous
    Jan 24

    Thank you all so much! I appreciate all the input and advice. I really thought I was just being ridiculous but I’m so happy to hear that other women feel the same way.

  • Steph
    Apr 27

    I like my MIL a lot but she’s too nosy and involved and it’s all because of my husband. He has to call home everyday to tell them what he’s eaten, how his day was... like a baby that’s never stopped nursing. But there were a few comments I agree with- your husband is the one who needs to talk to his mother. If it was my mother- she’d want to hear from me and not my husband. It’s more respectful... More

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