I am a step parent. I didn’t plan to become a step parent. In fact, after seeing what my own mother and the rest of my family went through at the hands of my half brother, her step son… well I swore I’d never choose to become part of a pre-made family. That experience colored my world view of step parents. My Mom is a damn good mother, and my half brother is a very sick individual that we just won’t touch.
But yet, I am a step parent. I STEPPED up into a role of mother 10 months earlier than planned. I stepped into a pre made family because the love of my life, DJ had a son from his previous relationship. At first it was so easy because we were on the road and he was with his biological mother Monday-Friday and we got him on the weekend. We saw how loving he could be and how great he was for us.
Then Christmas happened, and his Mom had to remove herself from the picture, from his life because of personal reasons. I didn’t push, but I took care of him, the house, helped with school work and eventually I became “MOM”.
Because kids that are products of divorced families, where one parent gets remarried… that child now has two different sets of parents. They get two of everything, holidays, birthdays, vacations, because they are now apart of Mom’s family, and they apart of Dad’s family which are two separate families now, instead of one.
But when the family that started out wasn’t healthy, wasn’t emotionally alright- that takes a toll on the parents and the children. Now I have to stress that all four parents, Mom, Step-Dad and Dad and Step-Mom are all on the same page when it comes to our child. We joke that he’s community property now because we all love and care for him.
I’ve taken care of him while he was sick, fixed boo boos, made sure he understands what it means to be a good man, a brave man, instead of a coward and a bully. I’ve handed books to read as punishment (Freedom Writers FTW) I have stayed up late stressing about how to help this child, I’ve sought out help, made appointments, lost sleep to care for a child that’s not biologically mine.
Fuck biology. Telling me that he’s not my child, telling me that I’m not his parent… well would you say the same to adoptive parents? Foster parents? Parents that STEP up into pre made families and take on a child when you can choose at any time to walk the hell away and say “Fuck this!” No. Biology is just science and genetics and DNA. What makes a mother is the time and effort you put in. The caring and the NEED for your child to be safe, and loved.
Thankfully his Mom is back in his life, and she is happy and healthier. She took the time out she needed and when he was ready he began talking to her again. Unlike my Father who is a total dick, and doesn’t give a damn about the children he helped create… and walked out of our lives choosing a woman that everyone can see is using him, abusing him and controlling him emotionally, and yet he went back. My son’s mom? She did what was best for her, and she talks to him daily, and talks to us daily to make sure that we are all on the same page.
I’m the one who woke up at 4:30 am so twisted up about how my son is behaving that I am now up for the day drinking a protein shake, making coffee and planning out today’s events.
So please. Don’t you ever tell me that child isn’t mine. Blood isn’t everything. In fact biology means very little in the bonds of family. Don’t discredit my motherhood, my parenting and my love for this child. Because if I didn’t care I would walk away. If I didn’t give two shits about what happened to him I’d try to get DJ to make him go live with his mother. I wouldn’t bust my ass to help him help himself, to teach him what its like to be a man, a good man, and a good citizen. I wouldn’t care if he ended up in jail, or Juvenal hall or a mental institution.
But I do care. I am scared for this little boy. I know in my heart that this boy can do anything he damn well sets his mind too and that he could take this world by storm. That he is smart, loving, and willing to help just about anything and anybody. It breaks my heart to know that my son is lost, and that he is suffering. Can you say the same for half the drugged out parents out there? Or teen moms? Or career parents that leave their children with Nannies or barely take the time to see them?
He’s not biologically made of me, but he’s in my heart, on my mind and I would kill to protect him.
Yup. I’m a step parent. And its one of the best adventures I’ve ever taken.